Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Who's Afraid of Israeli Democracy?

Daniel Greenfield
Sultan Knish
28 December '10

Haven't you heard, Israeli democracy is in danger. That's the latest media talking point on Israel. And where is the threat to Israeli democracy coming from? From its democracy. Confused? That's probably because you think that the word 'democracy' has something to do with the popular vote and the right of every person, irrespective of their religion, country of origin or accent to vote for the party of their choice. As misguided as the vote may be. When it actually means the right of media pundits, academics and elitist judges to dictate how the country is run based on the values of a entitled upper class scrambling to hold on to power.

Out of their concern for Israeli democracy, the American media and the Obama Administration have been pressuring Netanyahu to "broaden" his coalition by replacing the Shas party of Middle Eastern Jews and the Israel is Our Home party of Russian immigrants, with the Kadima party. Traditionally calls for a broader coalition usually mean one that represents more of the country. But due to their fear for "Israeli democracy", this is actually a call for a coalition that represents fewer sectors of the country.

Liberals who usually value diversity in everything, want to close the door on a broad coalition in Israel. Why? Because Middle Eastern Jews and Russian immigrants tend to be right-wing, and diversity is only a legitimate value when it serves to promote the left. But when the right wins elections, suddenly the pundits rush to their keyboards to type out an urgent telegraphic warning. DEMOCRACY THREATENED BY DEMOCRACY. STOP. DEMOCRACY MUST BE ABOLISHED TO PRESERVE DEMOCRACY. STOP. But if democracy threatens democracy, it's not democracy that's under fire. It's the insistence of a small group of powerful people on getting their way regardless of what the public wants.

(Read full "Who's Afraid of Israeli Democracy?")

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