A Jewish State – 75 Perspectives

Israel is a “Jewish state.” What is the meaning of this and how does it align with the democratic nature of the country?

These are the questions at the core of a contentious debate that has been raging since the establishment of the state.

This volume includes 75 essays on the question of Jewish — Israeli identity, by some of today’s best thinkers — Jews and non-Jews, from Israel and around the world.

A Jewish State – 75 Perspectives

Former Chief Justice of Israel’s Supreme Court: “Not recruiting yeshiva students undermines equality”

At a conference held by the Jewish People Policy Institute to launch the book 75 Faces of the Jewish State, which includes 75 thoughtful essays on the question of what constitutes a Jewish state. The Hebrew edition of the book was published (Yedioth Books) on the eve of Israel’s 75th Independence Day; the English edition will follow in short order.

Former Supreme Court Chief Justice Aharon Barak said in the discussion at the conference that Jewish law is our law, but its ability to fill the entire legal void does not really exist. Regarding the issue of IDF conscription, Prof. Barak said that not drafting Haredim into the IDF undermines equality.

He supported the Tal Law, which he said comports with the values of the State of Israel. With regard to recent accusations against him, Barak said, “My grandfather was a rabbi. His picture is in my office, and I glance at it hundreds of times each day. I’m not against the religious, and I am in favor of compromise. I have two bookcases that are connected by a single cord, one is Jewish and the democratic — this is not an oxymoron.”

PreviousNext