Attorney Tali Gottlieb responded to an incident in the Supreme Court in which Judge Meni Mazuz turned to her and said, "Madame, shut up."
After the hearing, Mazuz made it clear that he regretted his uncalled-for statement and explained that Attorney Gottlieb interrupted him and acted insolently and disrespectfully,
In response to the incident, Gottlieb told Arutz Sheva: "A Supreme Court justice in Israel tells me to 'shut your mouth' and I say to him, 'Sir, you do not talk like that, under the symbol of the State of Israel, his Honor will not talk to me thus. I am standing in the Supreme Court.'
"If I told you that, you would say to me, 'Well, that's attorney Gottlieb's story.'I went to take the protocol before anything happens to it, and indeed, in the minutes I see an accurate reflection of what I'm saying."
According to Gottlieb, if the protocol did not exist, no one would believe it. "Mazuz's response afterwards is even more troubling to me because he says things that are in complete contradiction to the protocol."
"Had he asked for forgiveness, everything would have been glossed over, but justices of the State of Israel, who stand at the center of fateful decisions affecting rights and statehood, can't act that way to lawyers."
Gottlieb admits that she may provoke antagonism: "I am considered a lawyer who fights fearlessly and that's a good thing. I don't have the same ethical rules that apply to judges. A basic ethical rule is that a judge must respect one who comes before him, so you speak to me that way and don't apologize? What then do you expect if this behavior spreads?
"I have great respect for this system, but as part of my respect for the judicial system, I have respect for myself and my commitment to my loyalty to the client and to my self-respect as a human being. If this happens to a lawyer who is less skilled than me, who can't answer, he would freeze in his place. We can't allow representatives of various authorities of different ranks to behave in this manner."
Translated by Mordechai Sones