Drawing on his experience as both an experienced Israeli human rights activist and an academic researcher, Ron Dudai explores a number of key themes relating to litigation, human rights and the ongoing Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
Focusing particularly on the perspective of Israeli lawyers and human rights activists it aims to provide readers with some of the salient background details, debates and dilemmas underpinning human rights legal activism in Israel today.
Israeli law is an important arena in which the struggle over shaping political culture and national identity is waged, and the Supreme Court has been the main site for such legal struggles. Dudai thus commences with an overview of Israeli legal culture, litigation and the role of the Supreme Court.
Subsequent sections of the report develop debates concerning the role of lawyers and legal strategies in human rights activism, including analysis of the ‘legitimation’ debate – the burning question as to whether litigation in the human rights sphere sometimes creates more harm than good.
In the concluding section Dudai compares the approach of traditional or ‘established’ human rights NGOs with more recently established grassroots groups and considers the tensions that underscore different variants of legal activism.