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The Israelis planning their escape from Netanyahu’s judicial coup

TJI Pick
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Published: 31 July 2023

Last updated: 5 March 2024

Fearful for the future, a large number of Israelis are seriously considering emigration, or have already started the process of moving to Spain, Portugal, the US – even Thailand.

Last December, when Amir (not his real name) was offered a postdoctoral fellowship at Princeton University, he and his partner Gilad (also not his real name) had yet to decide whether they were ready for a big move. But a month later, the newly elected Netanyahu government unveiled its judicial overhaul plans – and that pretty much decided it for them.

“There have been more and more incidents of violence against LGBTQ people in recent months, and we’re very scared that we will lose whatever rights we have as a gay couple,” says Gilad, 32, who works in high-tech and lives with his partner in the central Israeli city of Rehovot. “We also know that we wouldn’t have those rights if it weren’t for the rulings of the courts.”

And so, in September the couple will be boarding a plane for the United States, where they plan to spend at least the next two years.

A day after the coalition passed an amendment this week aimed at preventing the High Court of Justice from overruling government decisions it deems unreasonable, Yaniv (also not his real name) packed a suitcase for his family. He hasn’t ordered their plane tickets yet and doesn’t even know what their destination will be, but he wants to be ready to leave if and when “all hell breaks loose here,” as this computer programmer describes it.

Exodus: The Israelis Planning Their Escape From Netanyahu’s Judicial Coup (Haaretz)
Feeling under attack by their government and fearful for the future, a staggering number of Israelis are seriously considering emigration, or have already started the process of moving to Spain, Portugal, the U.S. and other countries. They explain why

Tired of Israel’s ‘pressure cooker,’ 100s of families lay new roots in Thailand (Times of Israel)
The relaxed atmosphere, friendly locals and affordable prices make Ko Pha Ngan a top destination for sabras seeking to escape their daily grind for a piece of paradise

Illustration: Aron Ehrlich

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