Justice Barak: Friedmann will ruin our democracy

Former Supreme Court president Aharon Barak calls Justice Minister "a crusader who'll stop at nothing."

aharon barak 224.88 (photo credit: Courtesy)
aharon barak 224.88
(photo credit: Courtesy)
The Supreme Court's war of words continues against reforms initiated by Justice Minister Daniel Friedmann. "The beginning of the end," former Supreme Court president Aharon Barak labeled Friedmann's initiatives in interviews he gave Tuesday to several major Israeli newspapers. "Friedmann will not change. He is an honest man walking headstrong into a wall. He is a crusader who will stop at nothing," Barak said. According to Barak, Friedmann, whose reforms he likened to a "tsunami" that would eventually bring down Israel's democracy, was "not doing his job" and was therefore not the right man for his position. Since his appointment in February 2007, Friedmann has been trying to lead several changes in the court system. Friedmann favors limiting the Supreme Court's jurisdiction in several fields, especially those pertaining to security decisions undertaken by the state. He also wants to change the procedure for appointing judges and justices. Barak claimed Friedmann's reforms would give the executive branch too much liberty in manipulating the judicial branch, and this, he said, would make the Supreme Court "a castrated court, a midget court."