Many of the respondents seem to miss the point. It is not the various and many religious practices of the Israelis that makes Israel a semi theocracy .. it is the actual power of the rabbis over the actual lives of the Israelis that makes it so. Having a mezuza or keeping shabbat or fasting on Yom Kippur does not amount to a semi-theocracy ... allowing rabbis to say who can and cannot marry, letting rabbis determine the country's foreign policy, letting rabbis exempt thousands of the youth from military service when the nation is at war etc etc etc ...THIS amounts to semi-theocracy. The CHOICE of the people to observe religious practices is called democracy ... the COMPELLING of the people to observe religious practices is called theocracy. A secular Israel will allow the free choice in these matters of religion ... a religious Israel will not allow a free choice. Secular is better.
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from the article: Gideon Levy / Let's face the facts, Israel is a semi-theocracy