Source Documents – The Israeli Knesset Debates, 1948-1981 are available on line through the prodigious work of Dr. Natanel Lorch and good offices of the The Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs. There are six volumes that cover the period. In addition there are 18 key debates from events in Israel’s democratic history. Each volume is available in full in PDF format, as are 18 key debates on major issues as listed below. Among those included are the Altalena Affair, Law of Return, Jerusalem and the Holy Places, Reparations from Germany, Eichman Trail, Dimona Reactor, the Six Day War, Yom Kippur War, UN treatment of Zionism, Israel treatment of Arabs in territories, Jerusalem Law, and much more. The material assembled also includes a glossary of Israeli political parties, a listing of Israeli personalities who served in various governmental capacities over time, and a summary of the Knesset debates from 1948-1981. This is a rich resource, and certainly worth perusing. Any one of the topical debates could be used in shaping discussions for a variety of cursory or in-depth enrichment purposes.
- Volume 1 – People’s Council and Provisional Council of State, 1948-1949
- Volume 2 – The Constituent Assembly-First Knesset, 1949-1951
- Volume 3 – Second Knesset, 1951-1955; Third Knesset, 1955-1959
- Volume 4 – Fourth Knesset, 1959-1961; Fifth Knesset, 1961-1965; Sixth Knesset, 1965-1969
- Volume 5 – Seventh Knesset, 1969-1973; Eighth Knesset, 1974-1977
- Volume 6 – Ninth Knesset, 1977-1981
Website- The Israeli Knesset website is available in Arabic, English, Hebrew and Russian. It is a wealth of information about contemporary events, elections, and about Israel’s democracy. There is no peer to this website for inclusion of information about how the Israeli government works. The website is robust in content; it includes basic laws, legislative process, the Knesset’s history, and roles of various governmental institutions such as the president, judiciary, cabinet, prime minister, etc. For those interested in accessing regular information about the Knesset, law making, and key decisions, the home page contains a current digest of the most current goings on in the 120 member parliament. http://www.knesset.gov.il/main/eng/home.asp