The planned judicial reforms are bringing about an internal crisis that could harm the IDF’s ability to deal with the intensifying security threats facing Israel, the Institute for National Security Studies announced in an “urgent strategic warning” on Tuesday.
“We warn that the continuation of the [reform] will seriously damage the social resilience, the spirit of the IDF and its functioning; will reduce Israel’s ability to face its enemies and continue to win the support of its friends, led by the United States, and will damage its economic strength and especially hi-tech,” the warning read.
The message did not go into detail regarding the planned reforms and their immediate effects on the government. Instead, it focused on the reforms’ negative effects, worsening internal conflicts and the country’s ability to tackle the multiple threats it currently faces.
A combination of threats
“Israel is facing a combination of serious threats to its national security, economic deterioration in the shadow of a global economic crisis, and widening cracks in its relations with the United States,” the announcement read.
“Israeli society is in an unprecedented internal conflict due to the promotion of legal reform, which amplifies these threats and impairs the ability to deal with them. Without getting into the controversial program of the reform, there is no doubt that this is a far-reaching change of the administrative and legal rules of the game, which is perceived by many as a real threat to democracy and which is being promoted at lightning speed without being given a real opportunity to form a broad consensus. As a result, a large-scale public protest is intensifying, which inevitably permeates all life systems in Israel, including the IDF.”
This warning comes after the INSS’s annual report already warned that if the current Israeli government harms Israel’s brand as a democracy, it could negatively impact US support regarding the Iranian nuclear and other threats.
“In the geostrategic realm, we identified the special relationship with the US as the greatest challenge before the decision-makers,” INSS managing director Tamir Hayman said at the presentation of the report. “Any harm to [the relationship] will immediately impact Israel’s ability to handle all of the other arenas.”
Yonah Jeremy Bob contributed to this story.