The “Act in Defense of Democracy”, organized by a diverse group of organizations from the Argentine Jewish community, was held in the auditorium of Judaica Belgrano at the end of August. The aim of the event was to express rejection of the judicial reform proposal put forward by the current Israeli government, which has generated a wave of mass protests that has now lasted 34 weeks. Several Israeli civil society organizations and opposition parties are contesting the package of laws announced by the government in January, claiming that, if passed, it would undermine Israel’s democratic quality by decreasing the competence of the judiciary and significantly increasing the executive branch’s ability to make decisions unchallenged by other branches of government. In addition to the protests in Israel (with the main stage in the city of Tel Aviv), there have already been demonstrations and marches in dozens of cities outside Israel under the slogan “In Defense of Israeli Democracy”, led by local Jewish communities and Israeli citizens living abroad.
Various organizations, from youth movements to rabbinical leaders, organized and attended the event. In addition to UJR-AmLat, other institutions linked to the Reform movement were represented, such as the World Union for Progressive Judaism (WUPJ), Arzenu Argentina and Fundación Judaica. In the speech agreed by the organizations, it was stated: “The separation of powers is essential for the survival of a full democracy, as conceived by Herzl and the founders of the Zionist movement, and the reform directly attacks this separation in order to guarantee the unrestricted power of the government of the day. The Zionist dream and the 75-year experience of a Jewish democracy are therefore in danger… That is why we have come together today to say, from different perspectives and experiences, but with a unified voice: we will not remain silent while Israeli democracy is weakened and destroyed.”