basic laws

Publications Regarding basic laws

Articles

Op-ed

The "Anti-Pardon" Bill: Laws are not a Substitute for a Backbone

In an article in <em>The Times of Israel</em>, Attorney Amir Fuchs argues that legislation that would give judges the authority to sentence murderers to life in prison with no possibility of pardon is misguided and will not prevent terrorists from being released in future prisoner exchanges.

Op-ed

Basic Law: Referendum—Changing the Rules of the Game of Israeli Democracy

Dr. Dana Blander draws on the findings of Israeli public opinion polls and explores some of the ramifications of the new Basic Law: Referendum, a law that establishes a system in which every citizen is entitled to participate in historic decisions on withdrawal from territory.

Op-ed

Only a Constitution will Ensure Good Governance in Israel

IDI researcher Attorney Amir Fuchs asserts that the only way for Israel to ensure good governance is by adopting a constitution.

Op-ed

Press Freedom, Democracy Under Fire

While in Israel there is no formal constitution, freedom of expression is inherent in our Basic Laws. Yet a recent episode between the Israeli government and the foreign press placed Israel in a problematic light and was neither democratic nor right.

Elections in the Shadow of War (2009)

On December 27th, 2008, just weeks before the scheduled general elections, the IDF launched a large scale military operation in the Gaza Strip. Should elections be postponed because of war or should they be held as scheduled? IDI researcher Dr. Dana Blander discusses this question from an historical-legal perspective, drawing on Israeli historical precedents and the experiences of other democracies.

Op-ed

Knesset Considers Changing Law to Apply Death Penalty to Convicted Terrorists

A recent Knesset bill that would introduce the death sentence for terror-related murder in Israel has broken the decades of relative silence on the matter. 

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Press Release

The Nation State Bill Bias

How can Israel - a light to the nations, and homeland for the Jewish People, fail to embrace equality for all, alongside commitment to the diaspora?

Op-ed

An Invitation to Racism

On December 4, 2012, the Israeli Supreme Court heard a petition arguing that the “Admissions Committee Law” is discriminatory and unconstitutional. Attorney Amir Fuchs explains why he sees this law as an insult to Israel's democracy.

Op-ed

A Ready Alternative to the Nation State Law

IDI researcher Dr. Amir Fuchs criticizes the proposed Basic Law that would establish Israel as the nation state of the Jewish people and recommends accepting Israel's Declaration of Independence as the preamble to Israel's future Constitution instead.

Policy Statement

IDI Experts Submit Legal Opinion on Basic Law: Israel as the Nation State of the Jewish People

A legal opinion opposing the proposed Basic Law: Israel as the Nation State of the Jewish People, which was submitted by IDI Vice President Prof. Mordechai Kremnitzer and Attorney Amir Fuchs to the Ministerial Committee on Legislation on June 4, 2014.

Op-ed

censorship, gag orders, military censor, media

Prof. Mordechai Kremnitzer and Attorney Amir Fuchs assert that the only way to guarantee Israel's existence as a Jewish and democratic state is not through a Basic Law that defining Israel as the nation state of the Jewish people but through a Constitution. 

Op-ed

Basic Law: Israel as the Nation State of the Jewish People – A Danger to the Zionist Enterprise

In an article in the Hebrew weekly <em>Makor Rishon</em>, Prof. Mordechai Kremnitzer and Attorney Amir Fuchs argue against the current initiative to pass Basic Law: Israel as the Nation State of the Jewish People, which they see as divisive and problematic.

Op-ed

Human Rights under Attack

IDI Researcher Attorney Amir Fuchs discusses two indirect threats to human rights in Israel: attacks on the Israeli Supreme Court and attacks against Israeli human rights organizations.

IDI Experts Submit Legal Opinion on Basic Law: Israel as the Nation State of the Jewish People

On June 4, 2014, IDI experts Prof. Mordechai Kremnitzer and Attorney Amir Fuchs submitted a legal opinion to the Ministerial Committee on Legislation stating their concerns about the proposed Basic Law: Israel as the Nation State of the Jewish People. A full translation of this legal opinion can be found below.

Op-ed

Basic Law: Israel as the Nationalist State of the Jewish People

In an op-ed originally published in Maariv, Prof. Mordechai Kremnitzer and Attorney Amir Fuchs warn that the Basic Law: Israel as the Nation State of the Jewish People would undercut the balance between the "Jewish" and "democratic" nature of the State of Israel.

Op-ed

Basic Law: Legislation – A Lethal Blow to the Supreme Court

IDI Vice President Prof. Mordechai Kremnitzer and Adv. Amir Fuchs analyze the proposed legislation that would allow the Knesset to reinstate laws that have been struck down by the Israeli High Court and warn of a threat to judicial review and civil liberties.

Op-ed

An Anti-Zionist Law

In an op-ed in Haaretz, IDI Researcher Attorney Amir Fuchs warns that the proposed Basic Law: Israel as the Nation State of the Jewish People is not only anti-democratic but also undermines the foundations of Zionism.

Op-ed

Basic Law: Nation State? Only a Constitution Can Guarantee Israel's National Character

Prof. Mordechai Kremnitzer and Attorney Amir Fuchs assert that the only way to guarantee Israel's existence as a Jewish and democratic state is not through a Basic Law that defining Israel as the nation state of the Jewish people but through a Constitution. 

Article

Jewish, Democratic—and Israeli

We should simultaneously define Israel as the nation state of the Jewish people and at the same time---the state and home of all its citizens.

Op-ed

Israel at 60: On the Road to Democratic Maturity

Barak Cohen discusses how Israel's lack of a constitution manifests itself today as unanswered fundamental questions of seemingly irreconcilable identities. The steps of progress and maturity have to consist of compromises and rationality.

Op-ed

Harmful Revolution: The Nation-State Bill’s Assault on Equality

Israelis must unite around a balanced arrangement that asserts that Israel is the nation-state of the Jewish people that guarantees equality for all its citizens.

And the Winner is...

According to Israel's Basic Law, following general elections the president appoints a Knesset Member to form the new government. In the wake of the 2009 Israeli general election, Benjamin Netanyahu was chosen – even though he did not lead the largest party. Dr. Dana Blander proposes the establishment of a clear set of rules which would automatically give the leader of the largest party the power to form the incoming government, obviating ambiguity surrounding the selection process of the Prime Minister.

Op-ed

A Four-Step Plan to Combat Hatred between Jews and Arabs in Israel

IDI Research Fellow Yair Sheleg outlines four steps that can allay fears, contribute to dialogue, combat hatred, and improve relations between Jews and Arabs in Israel

Policy Statement

Legal Opinion on the "Zoabi Bill"

A summary of a legal opinion on a proposed amendment to Basic Law: The Knesset that was submitted by Prof. Mordechai Kremnitzer and Dr. Amir Fuchs to the Ministerial Committee on Legislative Affairs.

Podcast

The Nation State law

If Israel was founded as the state of the Jewish people, why is a nation-state law so problematic, having already toppled one government? 

Op-ed

Who's Afraid of a Jewish State with Equality for All?

A state that is proud of its identity has nothing to fear from granting all its citizens equality.

Press Release

60% of Israelis Think the New Nation-State Law Should Have Included ‘Equality'

The monthly Peace Index of the Israel Democracy Institute and Tel Aviv University, published today, finds that: only 52% of Jewish Israelis think it was important to pass the Nation-State law at this time.

Op-ed

The Admissions Committees Ruling: A Lack of Ripeness or Refusal to Decide?

Dr. Amir Fuchs discusses the Israeli High Court of Justice's decision to uphold the "Admissions Committees Law," which allows small communities to reject applicants due to a lack of social suitability. 

Op-ed

International Disabilities Day 2013: Human Rights and Judaism in Action

In honor of International Day for Persons with Disabilities, Rabbi Dr. Benjamin (Benny) Lau updates us on IDI's efforts on behalf of people with disabilities and reveals that people with guide dogs are now allowed to access the Western Wall.

Op-ed

On Intermarriage, Judaism, and Democracy in Israel

Rabbi Dr. Benjamin Lau shares thoughts on the tension between Judaism and democracy, in response to the public protests against the marriage of a Jewish woman who converted to Islam and an Israeli Arab. 

Press Release

'Yes' to a Nation-State, 'No' to a Nationalistic State!

Leaders of the Israel Democracy Institute call for alternative proposal that would place nation-state of the Jewish people on equal footing with democratic obligation to equality for all Israeli citizens.