JERUSALEM — Ayelet Shaked is a vocal opponent of the Palestinian state. During last summer’s war in Gaza she even shared an infamous piece by another author on Facebook that called Palestinian children “little snakes.” She later tried to walk that back, but her reputation for extremism lives on, and not without cause.
Now she’s Israel’s newly appointed Justice Minister and she plans to put limits on the Supreme Court, believed by many Israelis to be the country’s strongest bastion of democracy.
A 39-year-old mother of two who has a background in high-tech rather than law, Shaked has, along with Jewish Home leader Naftali Bennett, helped to make Jewish extremism palatable to mainstream, especially young, Israelis. Their campaign slogans urged Israelis to stop apologizing for their existence, their wars, and their right to contested land in occupied territories.
Now that they have been brought into the government formed after weeks of delay by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, one of the biggest obstacles to their program is the independent judiciary.