Bar-Ilan & President Herzog


During this challenging period, Bar-Ilan’s professors have been actively working with President Herzog on the ‘People’s Directive’ in an attempt to build bridges and bring about solutions. Of the eight lawyers involved in leading the negotiations at the President’s residence, four are professors of law from Bar-Ilan: Profs Yedidia Stern, Yaffa Zilbershats, Shahar Lifshitz and Ariel Bendor.

In an open letter to these professors, Bar-Ilan’s President, Prof. Arie Zaban, wrote:

“I’d like to express my deepest appreciation for the contribution of Team Yedidia to the formulation of the People’s Directive issued by the President of the State of Israel.

I am pleased that Bar-Ilan University has put forth Israel’s best legal experts, to join forces for the benefit of Israel and its citizens. Your combined breadth of knowledge in Israeli law, nourished by deep roots of Jewish heritage and democratic tradition, is a guarantee that the Jewish and democratic character of the State of Israel will endure in the future as well.

We are deeply pained by the dreadful rupture, the widening breach among the Jewish people. Those seeking a change to the judicial system also understand that the legislative blitz as it currently stands – both in its content and by the motivations driving it – is not a proper way to proceed. Victories must be left to the battlefield, and vengeance – to G-d above. You, with your cognizance of what is hanging in the balance, engaged the breadth and depth of your knowledge of the issues, and dedicated yourselves to the most critical national undertaking before us at this time – to draw up a compromise solution.

I have read the proposal in detail – formulated together by President Herzog, the team of experts and the state’s representation. Broad agreement is the only way to bring the judicial aspect of this crisis to closure. I hope our leaders will exercise leadership, and ultimately adopt the proposal so that we can begin rebuilding the contract between Israel and its citizens.

The government must take a wide look at what is happening on the ground and exhibit the necessary sensitivity and responsibility so that we can begin addressing the social side of the crisis, to mend the deep rift among our people, and to re-establish the value system that is at the foundation of our shared life here. Bar-Ilan University’s unique character also lends it a greater share of responsibility to Israeli society and to our country; as such, your involvement sets an example, a paragon of our responsibility to impact tomorrow, today.”