Moshe-Mordechai van Zuiden
Psychology, Medicine, Science, Politics, Oppression, Integrity, Philosophy, Jews -- For those who like their news and truths frank and sharp

Lies and truths about the judicial power grab attempts by the Israeli government

Keep this list of 53 lies and their refutations handy in the coming months.

Even the left-wing (opposing) media echo many lies. Most people who spread the dishonesties don’t even know these are fabrications. Many opinion makers know the truth but think the end justifies the means, which our rabbis teach us is patently false. A lie is a lie and forbidden.

Some of the truths may seem right-wing and some left-wing, but none of them should be. They should all be the (sometimes uncomfortable) truth.

If you’ve not been around crooks like I have, you’re probably naïve and taken for a ride somewhat. If you rely for news on one or two sources, they probably have indoctrinated and fooled you. Check it out below.

Get informed! Don’t let anyone fool you! Additions/corrections welcome!

NB: Notice how the column on the right is three times wordier than the one on the left. A lie is quickly said, but reality has many angles.

The lie: The People is divided. The truth: Most opponents deeply understand the issues, but most of those pro the overhaul never dug into politics and follow rabbis too unknowledgeable and honest to understand the deceit in politics.
The lie: The opponents don’t understand the intricacies of it. The truth: The demonstrators are amazingly perceptive. As the Sages of the Talmud already admitted when the People knew better than them: If not Prophets themselves, they are offspring of Prophets.
The lie: The opponents are just destructive anarchists. The truth: At times of so much de­spair, it’s a marvel, so many care.
The lie: If this continues, I will leave Israel. The truth: Leaving would just be a reward for the legal coup. Don’t give up. The despair we inherited from many generations living in the Diaspora. Now we’re winning. Do not throw out your winning ticket.
The lie: The opponents are a tyrannical minority trying a coup, supported by ex-generals, as their only way to get rid of Netanyahu and undo Israel’s democracy. The truth: All the shoddy polls predict Netanyahu is done forming a government. His policies and leaning on the far-right have cost him any majority. No coup or fake trial needed. He’s history. No Israeli believes an insinuation ex-generals are preparing a military putsch.
The lie: It’s only fair to start talking about releasing Rabin’s murderer. The truth: The right got so drunk on power that every taboo fell.
The lie: The government tries to found a messianic theocracy. The Truth: Only Jews who don’t know anything about Judaism use such adverse words. Israel must be both Jewish and egalitarian. Atheists too must be tolerant.
The lie: Netanyahu will make sure that no civil rights will be taken away from minorities. The truth: I trust Bibi’s a humanist. But why doesn’t he let ministers target gay/trans-youths, their adoption rights, and Muslims?
The lie: The opponents are the Looney Left. The truth: Many carry the national flag because they are not. Some of the Looney Left speaks at rallies for everyone but the opponents run the whole spectrum from far-left to medium-right, from Muslims to Gays, from secular to traditional.
The lie: Minorities have nothing to fear from this government. The truth: Vulnerable groups disagree. In the Tel Aviv demos, a sizeable number of flags are rainbow and the pink (Lesbian) version of the Israeli standard. The new law to protect women in danger is less extreme than the previous one. The gender equality minister has no support to do anything. Physicians have joined the protests with a strike as they fear an abortion ban is coming.
The lie: This government acts with cultural Apartheid [sic] against the Bedouin by wanting to forbid their religious tradition of polygamy. (The likely intent was cultural genocide or supremacy, but Apartheid is the new slur again.) The truth: Surely, the Bedouin have much to fear from the attempt to limit the powers of the High Court. Yet, the idea to outlaw polygamy among them has nothing to do with this Bibi. Social workers have reported for decades that multiple wives here always went together with violence against women. Yet, the way this is now imposed may very well be racist, insensitive to their Black minority status. For Jews, polygamy is banned, though it is Biblically allowed. All Muslim men can have up to four wives. In Israel, they just register only one.
The lie: It’s forbidden for demonstrators to block traffic and for essential workers to strike. This is anti-democratic and dangerous. My dog had a tooth itch, and I was prevented from taking it to the vet. The truth: The whole purpose of strikes and demonstrations is to disturb normal society to put pressure on the powers-to-be to give in. The inconvenienced public, though, isn’t the enemy and must receive apologies. Immediate dangers must be prevented.
The lie: Cops are too violent/weak. The truth: By law, rank-and-file soldiers, pilots, police, and military police are not allowed to express a political opinion. But they find themselves between a rock and a hard place: angry demonstrators and an angry minister of police. The police chief countering they need to serve the public was fired. I went to dozens guiding the demonstrations and said with a broad smile: I know you can’t say anything, but I can: Thank you for your protection. Many faint smiles.
The lie: The opponents are anti-democrats because they argue a soundly elected majority coalition. The truth: This is the world upside down. When an administration opposes equality, it acts anti-democratically. Being elected gives no license to persecute anyone.
The lie: No country in the world has a supreme court revoking democratically approved laws. The truth: Nearly all countries have a constitution enabling any judge to rule any law unconstitutional. Because Israel has no constitution, we must have an active High Court putting the brakes on the Knesset, government, and professionals.
The lie: Israel’s Basic Law is its constitution, and, therefore, the High Court can’t repel a Basic Law. The truth: The High Court uses the partial Basic Law as a constitution. Yet, it’s approved by a simple Knesset majority so it can be vetoed by the High Court, like any law. Pipedreams aside, we lack the consensus to get a constitution.
The lie: The Israeli High Court has gotten crazily activist. The Truth: The High Court is really reluctant to intervene. Even Ben Gvir was allowed to run in the elections and enter government!
The lie: The Israeli High Court is extremely left-wing. The Truth: You mean, it will defend powerless individuals and groups against the authorities. But you can’t complain that a butcher cuts. That’s his work.
The lie: Curtailing the High Court makes no difference to regular Israelis. The truth: The IDF is a People’s army, often falsely accused by tyrants and Jew-haters of war crimes. But ex-soldiers have not been randomly sued outside of Israel (on vacation) because of Israel’s High Court human rights’ reputation and its serious court system that will investigate and punish when applicable. Beware not to make it toothless. Without the Principle of Complementary, the International Criminal Court can arrest Israelis in 120+ countries to be charged and prosecuted.
The lie: The government was ready to compromise. The truth: The government tried to further the reforms piecemeal and pretended to compromise, but you can’t merge democracy (equality) with some bigotry and favoritism. A compromise in democracy leaves a ‘democracy’ compromised.
The lie: We need to go back to the old status quo. The truth: If any changes can be made, they should go the opposite way of the coup attempt. State-paid rabbis should be diverse and not monolithic. Basic Laws should be readapted by an 80% Knesset majority. Politicians who oppose equality should not be electable.
The lie: Both sides are too extreme and intolerant. The truth: This is a false moral equivalence. Some bigots have entered the coalition and try to undo equality, democracy. You cannot call the opposition against that just another opinion.
The lie: Netanyahu invites the opposition to join him for a broad unity government. The truth: Opposition parties can join his coalition, but composition or policy of his team won’t change? That’s devouring, not unifying.
The lie: It’s for or against; there is no middle ground. The truth: You can be for protecting the power of the High Court without saying all they ever did was done well. They allowed for Ben Gvir. You can be against Bibi while admitting his merits. He prioritized preventing thousands of COVID deaths. He never prolonged armed conflict past the minimum. More gray: the broad anti-overhaul coalition has folks to disagree with deeply for everyone. But you join forces for the good of the country.
The lie: With all the disagreements, about one thing everyone agrees: we need to have judicial change. The truth: The status quo isn’t perfect. What ever is? But it’s good enough. If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.
The lie: Small government [interference] gives most freedom. The truth: Little interference by the authorities gives more freedom to the rich and powerful only. Right-wingers tend to lie for selfish greed and left-wingers for social ideals.
The lie: The Reasonableness Law. The truth: The newly approved law is the undoing the old criterium of a judicial reasonability check and is really the Unreasonableness Law.
The lie: It is unreasonable to remove Bibi for conflict of interest allegations. The truth: The new law to shield Bibi from recusing himself because of conflict of interest accusations stinks to high heaven. No one should be above the law, or get a law that places him there. In great chutzpah, the coalition now accuses the president of the High Court of not being unbiased about its erasure of the reasonability standard as she publicly rejected it.
The lie: The judicial change the government wants is minimal. The truth: It is not. Do you think the opposing lawyers, soldiers, pilots, heads of security, hi-tech, banks, and physicians are all totally mistaken? Don’t be so naïve!
The lie: Protests are of no use anymore. The government does what it wants anyway. The truth: Protests now tell the High Court more leniency won’t be tolerated. When that fails, quiet will return after new elections.
The lie: Democracy is that elected officials outdo non-elected officers. The truth: Laws by the majority that unjustly harm minorities or individuals cannot be part of the democratic system and must go unheeded and removed. The truth shows now the coalition tabled a bill that the chief rabbis appoint all local rabbis even if clearly against the will of the inhabitants’ wishes.
The lie: The IDF, IAF, and police must obey their political bosses. The truth: The IDF, IAF, and police must not obey immoral political orders, which the High Court will underline. Befehl ist Befehl is out.
The lie: The protesters are anti-democrats trying to blackmail the legitimately elected government. The truth: Winning elections gives no one a license to do whatever they want. The PM must continue to listen to us. And we must protest if something isn’t OK.
The lie: We will treat Muslims and Jews the same – that is equality. The truth: You don’t show equal love for your son and daughter by buying a wedding dress for both. Each has their own needs. To treat the powerless ‘equally’ means to neglect. To punish haters equally to peaceful people is to enable hatred to spread. To protect the vulnerable as much as those who are safe is to endanger them.
The lie: The main question is which political leader to trust most. The truth: Lying is part of politics. There is no need to put full trust in anyone. They’re all human, make mistakes, and can’t admit it since that would be their political end.
The lie: Ben Gvir, Levin, Rothman, Bibi, Gantz, Lapid, Hertzog, Derri, Lieberman, etc. are racists, evil, incompetent, etc. The truth: It’s not personal. Only the High Court must decide who is so anti-equality that they have no place in a democracy. But for the rest, what counts are politicians’ vows or acts, not inner sentiments or convictions. Attack sins, not the sinner. Fight issues, not people. Idolize artists, royalty, and your partner, but not elected officials. Canceling people is the flip side of Hollywood’s heroes’ culture. Yet, you publish if you catch a powerful person lying, stealing, or being a hypocrite (saying you want Israel to follow Jewish Law and then going to vacation outside of it) or bully. We should condemn harassment of anyone involved or their families.
The lie: The US, EU, and other national friends need to pressure the present Israeli government. The truth: If only these countries would make more of an effort to clean up the lack of equality in their lands! Free hateful speech, the death penalty, homelessness, abuse of would-be immigrants, etc. etc. I understand they like feeling superior, but we could teach them about a fair society and equality.
The lie: The demonstrators have been riled up by foreign actors. The truth: Inside the Jerusalem demonstrations, you feel the honesty of the marchers. It is ironic when politicians call us dishonest. The planners have a lot of money, but they don’t need aliens for that. The Israeli elite is anti-reform too.
The lie: We must work hard to prevent a civil war. The truth: The only schism is between the People and the rulers.
The lie: The left/secular just fight a cultural war with the right/pious. The truth: Israeli politics centers around interest groups. If you’re not at the table (in the coalition), you’re on the menu. But the anti-overhaul push also protects the right/religious. The next coalition will be left-center. The overhaul would allow for a law limiting new house ownership to ex-IDF soldiers.
The lie: Ultra-Orthodox-Jewish families are booming, which means soon they’ll be in the majority and the end of equality and democracy. The truth: Many traditional and secular families still have many children, their revenge on Hitler. And the Chareidi numbers will fall now they’re absorbed into society.
The lie: Religious politicians work for a more religious Israel. The truth: Many of them don’t. They are often just human, want more money and power for their own, and don’t even consider the ‘others.’ So, they may promote the death penalty ignoring that Jewish Law today opposes it completely. They want less oversight, but the commandment not to defame does not mean don’t check the rulers.
The lie: Bibi is a friend and ally of the religious. The truth: This is politics. He’s as little a friend of the pious as Trump a friend of Jews (while encouraging White supremacists). Stop being so gullible! He’s not a friend, and the others aren’t the enemy.
The lie: Bibi then says he will reform at moderate speed, and then that it will be at top speed. The truth: His goal is to please, not to inform. Top speed is to placate the right, moderation is to reassure the left—and to lull the marchers. To feign weakness has this aim too.
The lie: Bibi always lies. The truth: He said there won’t be a civil war; that’s correct. Surgeons cut, soldiers kill, and politicians lie; unpleasant but part of their jobs.
The lie: This fight is the most important political issue in Israel. The truth: This fight must be won, but meanwhile, the rich use this to distract us from the ways they keep making everyone else poor.
The lie: There was not much to report about the demonstration. The truth: The media just focus on violence. A huge, good-hearted demonstration is no news to them.
The lie: Bibi is just hurting Israeli Law to frustrate the trials he’s on. The truth: That’s a theory that can’t be proven. It doesn’t become true if it’s repeated a million times and most people believe it. Don’t waste your energy on speculation. Just oppose any unjust bills.
The lie: Muslims only respect an iron fist. We should call their bluff when they voice empty threats (If he enters the Temple Mount …). The truth: Provocations are not OK in a democratic State. Intimidation flies in the face of equality. Long-term goals need empathy, not ego.
The lie: The situation is extremely grave, explosive, and dangerous. The truth: That’s only true without opposition. The popular resistance should make us hugely optimistic. To get more viewers (money), the visual media try to scare us. Stay calm and rather read the news. Feel free to skip outlets, reporters, or writers you found spreading lies, propaganda, slander, hyping, etc. Or better still: Be a relaxed, happy, and optimistic activist. Don’t worry.
The lie: Everyone who supports Israel and my point of view, wears suits with ties, or smiles must be a good person. The truth: Mass murderers and political crooks tell stuff to get power, not to voice their beliefs. Smiling people in suits may lie too.
The lie: Jews should unite. The truth: The story of the Tower of Babel (Genesis 11) illustrates that, though unity is great, its cause is paramount. Not just Jews are (somewhat) divided. We don’t get hurt when we take time to contemplate Muslim-Israeli needs.
The lie: Judicial overhaul tension may harm national security. The truth: When homeland or foreign security goes down, we’ll need to scale down the protests. So, we must check if the coalition is not fabricating these tensions to have us fold temporarily.


You don’t need to trust me. Trust must be won. Just try my suggestions.

Among 2939 words, I put in one joke, a 16-word phrase. Did you notice?

About the Author
MM is a prolific and creative writer and thinker, previously a daily blog contributor to the TOI. He often makes his readers laugh, mad, or assume he's nuts—close to perfect blogging. He's proud that his analytical short comments are removed both from left-wing and right-wing news sites. None of his content is generated by the new bore on the block, AI. * As a frontier thinker, he sees things many don't yet. He's half a prophet. Half. Let's not exaggerate. Or not at all because he doesn't claim G^d talks to him. He gives him good ideas—that's all. MM doesn't believe that people observe and think in a vacuum. He, therefore, wanted a broad bio that readers interested can track a bit what (lack of) backgrounds, experiences, and educations contribute to his visions. * This year, he will prioritize getting his unpublished books published rather than just blog posts. Next year, he hopes to focus on activism against human extinction. To find less-recent posts on a subject XXX among his over 2000 archived ones, go to the right-top corner of a Times of Israel page, click on the search icon and search "zuiden, XXX". One can find a second, wilder blog, to which one may subscribe too, here: or by clicking on the globe icon next to his picture on top. * Like most of his readers, he believes in being friendly, respectful, and loyal. However, if you think those are his absolute top priorities, you might end up disappointed. His first loyalty is to the truth. He will try to stay within the limits of democratic and Jewish law, but he won't lie to support opinions or people when don't deserve that. (Yet, we all make honest mistakes, which is just fine and does not justify losing support.) He admits that he sometimes exaggerates to make a point, which could have him come across as nasty, while in actuality, he's quite a lovely person to interact with. He holds - how Dutch - that a strong opinion doesn't imply intolerance of other views. * Sometimes he's misunderstood because his wide and diverse field of vision seldomly fits any specialist's box. But that's exactly what some love about him. He has written a lot about Psychology (including Sexuality and Abuse), Medicine (including physical immortality), Science (including basic statistics), Politics (Israel, the US, and the Netherlands, Activism - more than leftwing or rightwing, he hopes to highlight reality), Oppression and Liberation (intersectionally, for young people, the elderly, non-Whites, women, workers, Jews, LGBTQIA+, foreigners and anyone else who's dehumanized or exploited), Integrity, Philosophy, Jews (Judaism, Zionism, Holocaust and Jewish Liberation), the Climate Crisis, Ecology and Veganism, Affairs from the news, or the Torah Portion of the Week, or new insights that suddenly befell him. * Chronologically, his most influential teachers are his parents, Nico (natan) van Zuiden and Betty (beisye) Nieweg, Wim Kan, Mozart, Harvey Jackins, Marshal Rosenberg, Reb Shlomo Carlebach, and, lehavdil bein chayim lechayim, Rabbi Dr. Natan Lopes Cardozo, Rav Zev Leff, and Rav Meir Lubin. This short list doesn't mean to disrespect others who taught him a lot or a little. One of his rabbis calls him Mr. Innovation [Ish haChidushim]. Yet, his originalities seem to root deeply in traditional Judaism, though they may grow in unexpected directions. In fact, he claims he's modernizing nothing. Rather, mainly basing himself on the basic Hebrew Torah text, he tries to rediscover classical Jewish thought almost lost in thousands of years of stifling Gentile domination and Jewish assimilation. (He pleads for a close reading of the Torah instead of going by rough assumptions of what it would probably mean and before fleeing to Commentaries.) This, in all aspects of life, but prominently in the areas of Free Will, Activism, Homosexuality for men, and Redemption. * He hopes that his words will inspire and inform, and disturb the comfortable and comfort the disturbed. He aims to bring a fresh perspective rather than harp on the obvious and familiar. When he can, he loves to write encyclopedic overviews. He doesn't expect his readers to agree. Rather, original minds should be disputed. In short, his main political positions are among others: anti-Trumpism, for Zionism, Intersectionality, non-violence, anti those who abuse democratic liberties, anti the fake ME peace process, for original-Orthodoxy, pro-Science, pro-Free Will, anti-blaming-the-victim, and for down-to-earth, classical optimism, and happiness. Read his blog on how he attempts to bridge any tensions between those ideas or fields. * He is a fetal survivor of the pharmaceutical industry (, born in 1953 to his parents who were Dutch-Jewish Holocaust survivors who met in the largest concentration camp in the Netherlands, Westerbork. He grew up a humble listener. It took him decades to become a speaker too, and decades more to admit to being a genius. But his humility was his to keep. And so was his honesty. Bullies and con artists almost instantaneously envy and hate him. He hopes to bring new things and not just preach to the choir. * He holds a BA in medicine (University of Amsterdam) – is half a doctor. He practices Re-evaluation Co-counseling since 1977, is not an official teacher anymore, and became a friendly, powerful therapist. He became a social activist, became religious, made Aliyah, and raised three wonderful kids. Previously, for decades, he was known to the Jerusalem Post readers as a frequent letter writer. For a couple of years, he was active in hasbara to the Dutch-speaking public. He wrote an unpublished tome about Jewish Free Will. He's a strict vegan since 2008. He's an Orthodox Jew but not a rabbi. * His writing has been made possible by an allowance for second-generation Holocaust survivors from the Netherlands. It has been his dream since he was 38 to try to make a difference by teaching through writing. He had three times 9-out-of-10 for Dutch at his high school finals but is spending his days communicating in English and Hebrew - how ironic. G-d must have a fine sense of humor. In case you wonder - yes, he is a bit dyslectic. If you're a native English speaker and wonder why you should read from people whose English is only their second language, consider the advantage of having an original peek outside of your cultural bubble. * To send any personal reaction to him, scroll to the top of the blog post and click Contact Me. * His newest books you may find here:
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