Tuesday, February 06, 2007

The new Justice Minister is Daniel Friedman, a law professor at Tel-Aviv University. This is a mixed blessing.

Friedman has been an outspoken critic of the Court, ever since Beinish blocked the appointment of his friend, Nili Cohen, several years ago. One of the critics of the Court in the Knesset told me today how Friedman would call him at all hours haranguing him about the the Court's injustices -- but only after the Nili Cohen incident, never before. This is the good news.

The bad news is that Friedman doesn't have much taste for religious Jews. One of his campaigns in the past was to go after Bar-Ilan for preferring religious faculty. One of the Mafdal-Ichud MKs told me today that he was very distressed by the appointment and expects Friedman to "harass us endlessly".

Unfortunately, once these kinds of guys get into power, they usually fall in line with the legal establishment but they don't often discover a newfound fondness for settlers and haredim.


Blogger Rafi Goldmeier said...

I was not aware of his issues like that. The papers only say the main things like him speaking against the court (which is something the right wing and religious have been doing for years and getting major criticism for it)

10:06 AM  
Anonymous zalman said...

Why did Olmert appoint him?

11:58 AM  
Blogger Ben Bayit said...

Could be, but unless the man is an old lech with his teaching assistants it's unlikely "they" have a "file" on him. Unlike Neeman with his law firm he isn't publicly involved in "high finance" type of dealings. So what can they possibly have on a 75 year old professor who taught 12 out of the 14 Justices on the court? It's like appointing Yeshua ben Prachia to be the first Pope after Jesus. But a good move on Olmert in sticking it to the "system" after "they" turned their backs on him despite his agreeing to do all they wanted.

But then again - I've been consistently saying that the "oligarchy" does not want to have a constitution (and Menachem Ben-Sasson all but said as much in the Makor Rishon interview) and that changing the appointments process won't "fix" anything anyhow. My guess is that the oligarchs now view Freidman and Amnon Rubenstein as old geezers who fell off their chairs and hit their heads on the marble. They will be marginalized

12:09 PM  
Blogger Ben said...

It's pretty straightforward. The bureaucrats in the justice ministry have been holding the politicians by the balls for years. Now the ministry is in the control of a guy whom they probably won't be able to indict and who is beholden to Olmert and to nobody else.

1:20 PM  

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