by Zero Hedge

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Update(1346ET): In a much anticipated 8pm (local) speech, at a moment hundreds of thousands of protesters are in the streets, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu confirmed in a televised speech that he will pause his ultra-controversial judicial overhaul plans which many say would destroy Israeli democracy and court independence.

He emphasized that he is aware of the deepening divide and tensions in society as a result of the legislation, but called the anger in the streets the product of an “extremist minority” that is “tearing Israel apart.” The crisis not only resulted in massive national strikes on Monday, but escalated to the point of growing numbers of refusals of recruits and soldiers to serve in the Israeli Defense Force’s reserve units, putting the country’s security in peril. According to Netanyahu’s words as reported in the Times of Israel:

The premier says he has repeatedly called for dialogue on the overhaul plan and says there “must not be a civil war,” saying there is a severe crisis in Israeli society.

“When there’s an option to avoid civil war through dialogue, I take a time-out for dialogue,” he says, adding that “out of national responsibility,” he is delaying the final readings of a divisive judicial appointments bill — under which the coalition would take almost complete of their appointment of all Israel’s judges — until the next Knesset session a month from now.

Reportedly many thousands of right-wing ‘counter-demonstrators’ have been taking to the streets, including in front of Knesset, to confront the much larger crowds which stand against the judicial overhaul. Crucially, Netanyahu signaled that he will eventually move forward with pushing through the legislation: 
He says “most” of his coalition allies support the move, stressing that the overhaul will end up passing in one form or another.
While the large-scale demonstrations are likely to continue for the time being, they are going to drop off in intensity, also as some of the major national strikes will likely be called off: 
Both the Histadrut labor union and the local council umbrella group call off their sweeping protests planned for tomorrow, in the wake of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s announcement that he is delaying the judicial overhaul legislative push.
However, organizers of anti-overhaul protest immediately say they will keep the demonstrations going until the plan is scrapped entirely
Within hours before Netanyahu’s speech, the White House issued an unusual statement, considering Israel has long been thought of as Washington’s most stable and dependable ally.
“President Biden is not concerned that Israel will deteriorate to a civil war,” NSC spokesman John Kirby said.

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