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		                                    Thinking Torah Blog		                                </span>

02/02/2023 05:00:00 PM

Feb2

Rabbi Josh Whinston

In this week’s Torah portion, Beshalach, we find a pinnacle moment in the story of our ancestor’s escape From Egypt. This week we read Shirat HaYam, the Song of the Sea, or the splitting of the sea. The Israelites walk through the sea unscathed, but the Egyptians are swallowed up as the water comes crashing down. Living in Israel for the last month feels very similar to splitting of the sea in Torah. After 18 months out of office, Benjamin Netanyahu was reelected Prime Minister late last year and we are currently facing the most extreme right-wing government in the history of Israel. While there are many reasons to be concerned about this current government, it is the planned judicial overhaul that is frightening so many Israelis here. Many academics, business leaders, and average Israelis are rallying in the hopes of saving Israel’s democracy. The current government intends to fundamentally change the judicial system here and essentially remove any checks on their legislative priorities by allowing Supreme Court rulings against legislation to be overturned by a simple majority in the Kennest. 

Over the next few weeks, Israeli democracy will be in the midst of a split sea. On one side of the sea lies a functioning liberal democracy and on the other lies an illiberal autocratic shell. Israeli Jews need our voice in this fight, they need to know that we care about the future of the Jewish people in this land. They are asking us to make our voices heard.

Please consider joining members of the Reform Movement in Israel and across the world in writing to the Prime Minister’s office by clicking HERE.

Tue, May 28 2024 20 Iyar 5784