We speak with two Israeli journalists in Tel Aviv after lawmakers in Israel passed a highly contested bill Monday weakening the power of the Supreme Court by preventing it from blocking government decisions it deems unreasonable. The bill is part of a broader set of judicial reforms pushed by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu that has sparked months of unprecedented protests, which continued last night. Journalist Haggai Matar says that while the Supreme Court “is not an ally to Palestinians,” its rare rulings in favor of Palestinians are a driving factor in the right wing’s overhaul, as well as decisions meant to curb public corruption. Palestinian leaders have criticized both Netanyahu’s government for pushing the judicial reform, as well as the massive protest movement for not speaking up for Palestinian rights as Israel continues its deadly crackdown in the West Bank. It’s time for the U.S. to show Israel there are consequences for apartheid and anti-democratic legislation, says Gideon Levy, columnist for Haaretz. “What kind of democracy can exist in an apartheid state?” he asks.
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