Navonim - The Ramblings of Garnel Ironheart

Navonim - The Ramblings of Garnel Ironheart

Friday, 3 April 2009

No Respect for Democracy

Israel recently held a general election, for those of you who hadn't heard. The Israeli right wing won and has just formed the government under the leadership of Binyamin Netanyahu. Netanyahu ran on a platform rejecting an immediate two-state solution to the Israeli-Arab problem while his opponent, Tzipi Livni, ran on a platform promising it.
Despite the Israeli electorate's demonstration of its democratic choice, it doesn't look like their wishes will be respected by their so-called friends in the international community:
As world leaders wrapped up on Friday an economic summit in London aimed at tackling the global financial crisis, a number of them took the opportunity to touch on another contentious issue by calling Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and urging him to work towards a two-state solution.
Chancellor Angel Merkel phoned the new premier and underlined Germany's commitment to strong relations with Israel, but called on Netanyahu to support the peace process with the Palestinians.
According to the chancellor's spokesman Thomas Steg, Merkel stressed German hope that the new Israeli government will continue to support international efforts and agreements aimed at arriving at a two-state solution.
Her comments were echoed by British Prime Minister Gordan Brown, who also phoned Netanyahu a short time later, AFP reported.
On Thursday night, US President Barack Obama reiterated his support for the Saudi Mideast peace initiative in a meeting with King Abdullah, the White House said in a statement.
The February 2002 initiative calls for a full Israeli withdrawal from all territories taken in the Six Day War, including east Jerusalem, and a "just settlement" to the Palestinian refugee crisis in exchange for normalizing ties with the Arab world.

For those of you who don't remember the 2002 Saudi plan, here's the capsule summary:
1)Israel is to surrender all territory captured in a defensive war started by its enemies, without any preconditions.
2)Israel is to accept millions of refugees whose claim to land in Israel is based on lies.
Israel is then to become yet another Arab state, albeit one with a (temporarily, until they can be killed or driven out) sizeable Jewish minority.
The cynic in me would like to simply note the following: All these world leaders are displaying an incredible contempt for the democratic process. Israel chose a government that rejected the Saudi suicide plan and their response? Accept it anyway. We don't care what you people actually want.
Also: the only difference between the European/US objective and the Arab objective is one of method. While the Arabs would love to openly destroy Israel and see it go down in a terrible bloodbath, chas v'shalom, the rest of the international community would prefer to avoid such messiness and simply have Israel agree to cut its own throat.
With such friends, it's no wonder Israel thinks the Arabs like them too.


Jewish Atheist said...

LOL. So criticizing the results of an election is "no respect for Democracy?"

What then is Israel w/r/t Hamas, the democratically-elected government of Palestine?

Just because a person or group is elected doesn't make them right.

Garnel Ironheart said...

So you're just proving my point: One of the fundamental principles of Western democracy is that, assuming the parties are sincere about their platforms, the voters are NEVER WRONG.
Yes, there are times when the electorate makes a mistake but that's because they're given the wrong information during the campaign.
Why was the Israeli election of 1993 a joke? Because Rabin ran on a platform of "No talking to the PLO" and once elected he completely reversed course.
Same thing with Sharon in 2000. Remember his "No withdrawals whatsover!" campaign? Oh, but once he was in power and threatened with corruption charges, he changed course.
As for Hamas being the democratically elected government, keep in mind that the Arabs make Mexico look like a shrine of honesty and transparency.
There's a huge difference between a legitimate electorate (Canada, US, UK, Israel, etc) and a corrupt one where the balloting is just going through the motions.

Anonymous said...

Hamas won fair and square - EU election monitors, the whole shebang - though doves like JA seem to like to believe that this was because of widespread Fatah corruption and Hamas's promise of social services rather than broad ideological support for Hamas's platform.

The governments of the West, as JA pointed out, are being consistent - they refuse to accept the results of the democratic process when the elected power fails to agree with their own goals. At least Israel is not being blockaded or having its foreign aid cut off.

Garnel Ironheart said...

EU election monitors watching an election are like giving a bicycle to a fish.

At any rate, the governments of the West are boycotting Hamas not because they don't like that it won the election over their preferred terrorists, Fatah, but because Hamas has refused to present itself as a legitimate government but rather has turned 'Aza into an armed camp as part of its war against Israel. Does anyone doubt that if, instead of firing rockets at Israel, Hamas cleaned up the Strip, started providing basic services and actually governed that the Western governments wouldn't run hand over foot to open ties with them?