On Wednesday, a significant 'Selichot' prayer event took place for the first time in the Knesset square, setting the stage for Yom Kippur. During this gathering, Knesset Speaker Amir Ohana delivered a compelling speech in which he firmly rejected the notion of dividing Israel into two separate states due to internal disputes.
Former Prime Minister Ehud Barak was interviewed by the American CBS network on Tuesday night, during which he expressed concerns about the reform of the judicial system and its potential consequences. Barak asserted that these reforms could have a significant impact, even to the point of costing lives. His comments were characterized by a sense of urgency and a call to action.
"We are on the way to a non-violent civil uprising," Barak exclaimed during the interview. "There will be ups and downs, and it may take time. Unfortunately, some individuals may lose their lives along the way. We will have to endure toil, sweat, and tears - and hopefully not bloodshed."
כשמדברים על ארגון פשיעה שנוצר מהון כלכלי וכוח של האליטות זה מגיע לזה שעלוב ובזוי כמו אהוד ברק מחפש דם ברחובות רק כדי שהוא לא יגיע לדוכן הנאשמים. והפרקליטות המושחתת דום שתיקה. pic.twitter.com/tQFuJ6wPXF
Barak did not shy away from addressing the possibility of violence, noting that it often originates from right-wing elements. However, he emphasized that such violence must be halted, regardless of the cost. In a seemingly reflective moment, which contradicted his previous words regarding the lose of life, he added, "I am confident that, contrary to all the warnings, a civil war will not erupt. Netanyahu lacks both the military support and the will to engage in such a conflict."
The former Prime Minister firmly asserted that the current government in Israel is illegitimate and its members are actively seeking to alter the system. According to Barak, the government's actions threaten the rights of minorities, the LGBTQ+ community, and women, and he expressed a strong determination to prevent such changes. "We are on the path to a non-violent civil war," he declared. "We must thwart their efforts, safeguard Israel's democratic values, and emerge victorious in this battle."
Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu is visiting the U.S. this week amid ongoing protests over the government's judicial overhaul effort. Former Prime Minister Ehud Barak tells CBS News, "We, the people, are defending our democracy against an attempt to destroy it from within." pic.twitter.com/vsPTpvCU01
In response to Barak's remarks, the Likud party issued an official statement, condemning his words and accusing him of incitement to violence. The statement read, "Ehud Barak, the leader of the left-wing demonstrations, who previously vowed that 'bodies would be covered in water' before judicial reform, continues to incite violence by suggesting that 'people will lose their lives in the demonstrations.' Barak's sole ambition is to overthrow the right-wing government, even at the cost of Israeli lives. We call upon law enforcement authorities to put an end to this reprehensible incitement."
Barak's comments followed controversial statements made by Prime Minister Netanyahu just prior to his trip to the United States. Netanyahu criticized Israelis who were protesting against him in the U.S., accusing them of aligning with the PLO, Iran, and other adversaries. This remark drew strong condemnation from members of the Knesset and protest organizations opposing judicial reform. Subsequently, his office issued a clarification, stating that he meant protesters would coincide with PLO supporters and the BDS movement.
Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu's decision not to attend the state memorial ceremony for the late Yitzhak Rabin, scheduled for October 26 at the Greatest of the Nation on Mount Herzl in Jerusalem, has generated considerable attention and controversy. This marks the first time a sitting prime minister has boycotted the state ceremony, as reported several Israeli News channels.
The inaugural episode of the 56th season of the esteemed investigative program, "60 Minutes," which aired on Sunday night, delved into the realm of Israeli judicial reform and the consequent protests that erupted. As an integral component of this episode, an interview with Justice Minister Yariv Levin was featured, during which he articulated his perspective on the role of the Supreme Court vis-à-vis the government and the will of the people. Levin asserted, "The Supreme Court is above the government and the will of the people; I want to balance that."
About 400 reserve aircrew members of the IDF’s Air Force, who are at the forefront of the reservist protest against the government’s judicial reform, convened a meeting in the heart of the country on a Wednesday afternoon. The purpose of this gathering was to strategize in preparation for the government's upcoming actions regarding the controversial judicial reform. Notably, two influential figures graced the meeting with their presence: Rabbi Yaakov Shapira, the head of Merkaz Harav, and Tom Friedman, a prominent journalist from the New York Times. Additionally, Professor Shahar Lifshitz from Bar Ilan University provided a comprehensive legal and political analysis of the ongoing situation.