Serial Criminals Rule Israel. That’s Where the Collapse Begins By Mordechai Gilat – 5 minutes read time.

Here’s a question that no sane family in Israel can avoid asking: How did we get to the situation where Israel resembles a giant stinking sewage pit? How is it that career criminals and con artists rule the country and do whatever they want with its property?

Why has no criminal investigation been launched against Energy Minister Eli Cohen when he was foreign minister, when he ordered the issuing of diplomatic passports to associates? (As reported by Haaretz’s Gidi Weitz in December.) Is someone at the State Prosecutor’s Office preventing the police from doing its duty in this and other serious cases?

Why are the police not questioning aides to National Security Minister Itamar Ben-Gvir regarding the distribution of rifles to civilians, even though Attorney General Gali Baharav-Miara has ordered the police’s fraud unit to do so?

Why wasn’t the Likud supporter who made and shared a video calling for a mutiny in the army not ordered to remain in custody for the duration of the proceedings?

Why are people who demonstrate against the government and for the release of the hostages dragged into holding cells under false pretenses? They’re put in wrist and leg restraints, while this Likud supporter, a serial offender who poses a clear danger to democracy and the rule of law, is released with restrictions.

Perhaps most importantly, why hasn’t Benjamin Netanyahu placed Transportation Minister Miri Regev on leave due to the findings by Channel 13’s Raviv Drucker? Why haven’t the corruption suspicions led to a criminal investigation by the state prosecutor? Here are a few answers.

• Israel no longer has a genuine civil service. De facto, with Netanyahu’s blessing, the state comptroller no longer exists.

• There hasn’t been a Civil Service Commission with teeth for years – again, with Netanyahu’s blessing.

• The Justice Ministry department that investigates allegations of police misconduct shuts its eyes, so the country doesn’t have a professional police force for which the law is a guiding light. This department, whose record is impressive, no longer really exists.

• There is no longer a genuine State Prosecutor’s Office or a genuine state prosecutor, nor are there people who create an atmosphere of a war on government corruption. In this climate of utter lawlessness, violence runs riot as never before.

Instead, the police mercilessly beat people demonstrating against the government. Members of the protest movement are arrested on baseless grounds, and police officers fearlessly lie in court when seeking to extend detentions. The prime minister brazenly lies in a desperate attempt to obscure his failures. The prosecutor’s office is silent about the thugs who are taking over the country.

No less important, there aren’t enough serious judges for the fight against corruption, judges who send a signal that corruption and crime don’t pay, judges in the spirit of Meir Shamgar, Aharon Barak, Dorit Beinisch, Eliyahu Matza and Miriam Naor.

If judges like them were presiding over the case against Netanyahu, who is charged with bribery, fraud and breach of trust, he wouldn’t have dared come to the Jerusalem District Court with 10 obedient cabinet members. He wouldn’t have dared to give that speech in which he threatened the judiciary. He would have feared the judges and treated them with reverence.

He would have shown respect for the main gatekeepers of the rule of law instead of ostentatiously ignoring them. He’s not a hero, as the members of his crazy cult think. But when their honors the judges don’t maintain their honor, why should he protect them and what they represent?

When the judges have all the time in the world to ploddingly conduct the most important trial in the country’s history, knowing that this is in the defendant’s interest, why should he order his lawyers to hurry?

When the judges are shown – sometimes by their own statements – to be unfamiliar with the evidence or even parts of the indictment, it’s a disgrace.

When these judges face clearly hostile witnesses but refuse to brand them as hostile witnesses – witnesses who either lied to the police or are lying to the court – why should other witnesses not retract the testimony they gave the police, testimony supported by documentation or other witnesses?

Why are the judges letting the defense disobey them and turn the courtroom into a circus? Don’t they realize that disrespect for the judiciary and law enforcement starts with them and very quickly trickles down?

I’ve been there and seen it, and I’ve been embarrassed. I’ve been embarrassed for the judges as I am for the entire system. I’m embarrassed, maybe even especially, for the Supreme Court.

We need to acknowledge the truth: This is where the country’s disintegration begins. There is evidence that the government’s effort to weaken the judiciary is reaping success. This is where the fortress really falls.


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