Sunday, August 19, 2012

The Left Despairs Of Israeli Democracy While Doing Its Best To Destroy It

Joel Fishman, editor for Scholars for Peace in the Middle East writes about The Dangerous Link between Delegitimization and Sedition that is developing in Israel:
I am referring to the ongoing campaign to discredit the idea of the Jewish state and particularly its prime minister, Benyamin Netanyahu. Most recently, a group of agitators, prominent intellectuals, and fashionable authors have accused the Prime Minister of being a dictator, a megalomaniac, and war criminal. Moreover, they have claimed that the existing form of government is not a real democracy. According to them, the Prime Minister, the government, and the Jewish State lack legitimacy and virtue. They no longer deserve to hold office and even to exist.
As examples, Fishman lists:

The issue is not one of democracy--the goal is not to encourage discussion and debate but to circumvent it and force one's own opinions and politics on the majority:
We must listen carefully to the message which such individuals convey and identify their ultimate purpose: that is the end-goal which they really hope to achieve. They do not intend to bring about improvement through constructive criticism and reform. They do not seek to convince but to destroy. Because they reject the existing structure of the Jewish state, they seek to annihilate it and wipe it off the face of the earth. Under the new order which they hope to create, they would construct a "perfect democracy" ruled by a cadre fully committed to their partisan ideological views. They know that they can never achieve power through legitimate and free elections, so they endeavor to achieve their objectives gradually and systematically through overt means and subterfuge. This is the meaning of sedition.
Read the whole thing.

Similarly, Shlomo Avineri addresses the problem that Refusing orders is a dangerous sign:
A number of bad things have happened recently to the public debate over the Iranian issue: Not only are some participants unaware of the facts - nor do they have any way of knowing them - recently various important people have been calling on the military leadership not to obey the elected political leadership's decision if it decides to attack. In addition, pilots have been called on to refuse to carry out such an attack.

I am one of those who have doubts about the necessity and wisdom of a military operation against Iran at this stage, but the things that several writers and journalists have said on this issue are infuriating, and they are a dangerous sign. They have no place in a democratic state, even if one can understand the agony and sincerity of opponents of an Israeli action.
Avnieri suggests that those officers with strong doubts should do the honorable thing and resign--with the option of going ahead and warning the public against what they consider the dangerous path being followed by the government, much in the way that Col. Eli Geva did in the first Lebanon war. However, for seniors officers to simply refuse to obey the Israeli government "means a putsch and a military coup" -- or sedition.

Giulio Meotti notes the misdirected efforts of the Israeli left to stop the attack on Iran:
Only fools could expect that left-wing ideologues would embrace such a preemptive strike. But what the Israeli literary doyen Amos Oz and his friends did is beyond the conceivable.

Oz and others writers sent a legal ultimatum to Prime Minister Netanyahu, demanding that he state publicly that he will not order an attack against Iran without a receiving the cabinet’s approval first. Oz and the other writers originally gave Netanyahu until Thursday, August 16, to do so or face legal action.

Amos Oz is not trying to indict an Iranian regime at the International Penal Court for calling the Israelis “a bunch of bloodthirsty barbarians,” “an insult to human dignity,” a “stinking corpse,” a “wild beast”, a “scarecrow", “filthy”, “bacteria", "impure", “unhygienic” and “contaminated". No, Oz is trying to indict the leaders of the Jewish people during the most dramatic time for Israel in years.
There does seem to be a lack of vocal response from the Left to the aggressor in this case, which lends that much more credence to the idea that politics -- Israeli, not international -- are what is driving the Left's rather  undemocratic attack on the democratically elected government of Israel.

Iran, for its part, is no doubt enjoying the show.
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