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Prolonged Armed Conflict and Diminished Deference to the Military: Lessons from Israel

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  27 December 2018


We examine whether the level of deference shown by the Israeli Supreme Court to military decisions has changed over time by empirically analyzing the entire body of Supreme Court decisions in petitions against the military commander between 1990 and 2005. Setting forth a number of different factors that might generally affect the degree of deference to state agencies, we hypothesized that there would be a decrease in deference in the relationship between the Court and the military commander during the examined period. Our findings show that deference to the military commander has indeed diminished significantly. We argue that this is best explained by the continuation of the armed conflict (and its aftermath, namely, the routinization and increase in the number of petitions by the civilian population) and also—to some extent—by the rise of a substantive rule‐of‐law legal consciousness, central to which is the importance of human rights.

Copyright © American Bar Foundation, 2010 

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