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State University of New York Press
Professionals against Populism: The Peres Government and Democracy

Professionals against Populism: The Peres Government and Democracy

by Michael Keren


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Professionals against Populism: The Peres Government and Democracy

Based on Shimon Peres's private papers, investigates the role of professionals--attorneys, strategic experts, and economists--in Israel's national unity government of 1984-1986 and assesses their impact on government policy.

This book, based on Shimon Peres's private papers, tells the unusual story of the Peres government of 1984-1986 in Israel. It is the story of an unpopular politician, demonized by his political enemies, who operates under great time restraints to manage a pluralistic democracy losing ground to enchanted masses in public squares.

Lacking support from his own national unity government, Peres reverted to his old-time alliance with Israel's technocrats in his combat against populism. Michael Keren analyzes the role of legal professionals, strategic experts, and economists in the three main events of the Peres era: the scandal over the killing of two Arab terrorists by the General Security Service; the efforts to renew the peace process in the Middle East after the Lebanon war; and the economic stabilization program of 1985. This analysis illumines Israel's hitherto unexplored technocratic stratum and its ongoing struggle over Israel's nature as an advanced industrial state. This stratum, the author contends, has been the moving force behind the construction of the nuclear reactor in Dimona in the 1960s, the combat against populism in the 1980s, and the Israeli-Palestinian peace process of today.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780791425640
Publisher: State University of New York Press
Publication date: 08/28/1995
Series: SUNY series in Israeli Studies Series
Edition description: New Edition
Pages: 147
Product dimensions: 5.91(w) x 9.01(h) x 0.42(d)

About the Author

Michael Keren is Chairman of the Department of Political Science at Tel-Aviv University. He is the author of Ben-Gurion and the Intellectuals: Power, Knowledge and Charisma and The Pen and the Sword: Israeli Intellectuals and the Making of the Nation-State.

Table of Contents


1. Introduction

2. Knowledge and Democracy

3. Law and Security

4. In Quest of Moderation

5. The Social Contract

6. Conclusion





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