This book looks at the theoretical issue of how a democracy can defend itself from those wishing to subvert or destroy it without being required to take measures that would impinge upon the basic principles of the democratic idea. It links social and institutional perspectives to the study, and includes a case study of the Israeli response to Jewish extremism and violence, which tests the theoretical framework outlined in the first chapter. There is an extensive diachronic scrutiny of the state's response to extremist political parties, violent organizations and the infrastructure of extremism and intolerance within Israeli society. The book emphasises the dynamics of the response and the factors that encourage or discourage the shift from less democratic and more democratic models of response.
. The decision to shift the responsibility for dealing with Jewish extremism and violence from the army to the Shabak was another indication of the institutionalisation of the ‘extended criminal justice model’ as the dominant doctrine in the struggle against Jewish terror. Isser Harel, founder of the Shabak, began the process of segregating the GSS from the army, thus reinforcing its status as an autonomous non-military body. According to Harel, this made it easier to reconcile between security operational needs, on the one hand, and the legal constraints of a
construct of the ‘defending democracy’ to the reader as a broad, holistic and operational framework, embodying a number of different levels of analysis found in constant interaction among themselves, and enabling the transference of the construct to the scrutiny of other nations and states as well as comparative research. The Israeli political context In order to evaluate the changes in the Israeli response to Jewish extremism and violence, I begin by presenting the discussion of those particular political characteristics of
THIS CHAPTER HAS three principal objectives. First, on the basis of the findings of the first four chapters, it will provide a synopsis of the Israeli response to Jewish extremism and political violence. This will extend from the early days of the State’s existence until the beginning of the new millennium, with an emphasis on current developments. Such a historical perspective will enable us to assess the degree of success of the Israeli ‘defending democracy’ in moving from the ‘militant’ pole to the ‘immunised’ pole on the continuum of the