Who’s Afraid of Israeli Democracy?


By Kahina
December 30, 2010
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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 in some eyes. However, 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. When the right wins elections, 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.

Atlantic shill Jeffrey Goldberg proudly portrays this Orwellian vocabulary when he warns that “wide swaths of Israeli Jewish society” are undermining the country’s democracy. And he lists Orthodox Jews, Middle-Eastern Jews, Settlers and Russian Jews. In other words the majority of the country.

And how is this terrible majority of Israelis undermining the country’s democracy? Well Jeffrey, they’re going to the polls and voting for the parties of their choice! And then the parties represent them in the Knesset and in the government coalition! Clearly this threat to democracy cannot be understated.

Unsurprisingly Jeffrey Goldberg’s list of the “Fearsome 4″ are all associated with the right. Even more unsurprisingly, they all represent ethnic and religious minorities that deviate from the establishment left’s native-born secularism.

It's a long piece but please read the rest of the article by Daniel Greenfield here http://www.israpundit.com/archives/32117#comments

COMMENTS

Kahina

Thu, 12/30/2010 - 11:18

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2 points

When people here in the UK, in America, and elsewhere complain about the Israeli government - when you ask them to be more specific, what they actually tell you is that they don't like Shas and Yisrael Beitenu. And it really is racist.

Yes racist. Racist against the Sephardi/Mizrachi and Russian communities. Those are the communities that vote for them. All those Jews who don't quite fit the elitist European mould of the Labour founders.

Remember, next time you're critising Shas and YB, you're just being racist against those that aren't quite... you.


Joe Millis

Thu, 12/30/2010 - 11:39

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-1 points

Kahina, I point you to an editorial in the Jerusalem Post.
Also, is it racist to point out Shas's and YB's racism?


jose (not verified)

Thu, 12/30/2010 - 11:42

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1 point

Also, is it racist to point out Shas's and YB's racism?

If you don't point ten times more often to Saudi Arabia, Lybia, Egypt, Syria, Lebanon, PA, and Iran's racism, yes.


Kahina

Thu, 12/30/2010 - 11:55

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2 points

Joe, you love all the multi-culturism that Israel has to offer.

But you make it clear in your comments that you don't like these parties, these parties that are voted in by the ethnic groups. The left parties try to persuade them to vote for theirs, but to no avail.

Should they have their vote taken away?

What can we do?


Joe Millis

Thu, 12/30/2010 - 12:07

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-1 points

Obviously, Kahina, I don't like these parties for the same reason I don't like the BNP. It's also a fallacy to suggest that YB, at least, is an ethnic party. A large number of its MKs and voters are native-born Israelis. And a large number of "Russian" voters,once they have been in Israel long enough, cease to vote for narrow-interest Russian immigrant issues. Just look what happened to Sharansky's party, Yisrael Be'Aliyah. Without a continued mass immigration, immigrant parties have a sell-by date.
As for Shas it long ago ceased to be the party of just the "downtrodden" Sephardim. It's appeal extends beyond that and has a large percentage of voters -- disaffected Likudniks, for instance -- who are neither Orthodox nor Sephardi/North African/Yemeni etc. The fact that its Knesset list is all-male, all Orthodox says a lot about the leadership, not the constituency.


jose (not verified)

Thu, 12/30/2010 - 12:10

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2 points

Millis's view of democracy is to give the right to vote only to those who think like him.

Multicultural country but only if they vote all alike!


Joe Millis

Thu, 12/30/2010 - 12:34

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-1 points

Millis's view of democracy is actually everyone has a right to vote and everyone has a right to criticise those parties with which they do not agree. As Lord Sugar would say, Jose: You're fired (as my spokesman).


bataween

Thu, 12/30/2010 - 12:41

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1 point

Greenfield is right - 'right-wing' Mizrahim are seen as an obstacle to peace, one of the reasons why the Jewish refugees from Arab countries issue has been neglected for so long.
The US and Europeans are only interested in manipulating Israeli politics for their own ends.


Kahina

Thu, 12/30/2010 - 12:50

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1 point

Yes, big thanks to Danny Ayalon of Yisrael Beitenu for keeping them on the agenda. I think YB are picking up a lot of the Mizrachi/Sephardi votes becuase of this.


Joe Millis

Thu, 12/30/2010 - 13:02

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-1 points

Here's a case in point, Kahina. Ayalon is Algerian-born, whose family had French citizenship (in common with other Algerian Jews). He's hardly an immigrant from the former USSR.
Anyway, I think raising the plight of the Jews from Arab lands is a ploy by the Israelis to get the Palestinians to lower their compensation demands from Israel for the "Naqba". Some people are going to be very disappointed. And much like the disgrace that is the Claims Conference, some people are going to get very rich indeed on the back of the victims. As will quite a few lawyers.


Kahina

Thu, 12/30/2010 - 13:21

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0 points

Ayalon was actually born in Israel, it was his father who was born in Algeria. After independence from the French, Algeria allowed only Muslims to become citizens and drove the indigenous Jewish community out. They had to leave all their properties and businesses behind and restart their lives from nothing.

And you're right about the followings of the parties, they don't have strictly one ethnic following anymore. But parties like YB, whether you like them or not, are growing and taking votes from the other parties.

What is a surprise is how many British Jews who have made Aliyah have voted for them. They just keep shtum in family dinner parties so as not to raise the blood pressure of their eldery relatives.


jose (not verified)

Thu, 12/30/2010 - 13:25

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0 points

Anyway, I think raising the plight of the Jews from Arab lands is a ploy by the Israelis to get the Palestinians to lower their compensation demands from Israel for the "Naqba".

There will be no compensation for an imaginary wrong. 'Palestinians' evacuated their homes in order to get rid of the Jews with the help of the Arab countries. Therefore, they behaved as enemies that wouldn't help the Jews when they would be slaughtered ("itbach al yahud")
On the other hand, the Arabic Jews never behaved as enemies and were much richer than the 'Palestinians' so there could be a very big claim for the Jewish "Naqba".


Joe Millis

Thu, 12/30/2010 - 13:41

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0 points

Jose,at least 50 per cent of the Palestinians were forced from their homes, according to Israeli archival records and documented by Benny Morris, who is apparently no longer a New Historian.
And if you are French, you'll understand that by saying à la guerre comme la guerre, I am making no moral judgment about the expulsion of a large percentage of the Arabs by the Israelis,except to say it happened. Look up Ikrit and Biram.


Yoni1

Thu, 12/30/2010 - 14:20

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0 points

"Remember, next time you're critising Shas and YB, you're just being racist against those that aren't quite... you."

You don't actually know what 'racist' means, do you?

Shas is utterly disgusting for many reasons. Shall I list them? That does not make me 'racist', you moron.

And enough already of the whiney nonsense about the poor, downtrodden Sephardim. Some of my in-laws are Israeli Sephardim of very modest means, and they tell me they are sick to the back-teeth of this crap.


Yoni1

Thu, 12/30/2010 - 14:24

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0 points

"I think raising the plight of the Jews from Arab lands is a ploy by the Israelis to get the Palestinians to lower their compensation demands from Israel for the "Naqba"."

What a truly sick statement from a truly sick mind.

There are no 'Palestinians'. There was no 'Naqba'. There was a planned genocide of the Jews. It didn't happen. Nil compensation is payable.
There's the door.
Next!


jose (not verified)

Thu, 12/30/2010 - 14:30

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1 point

Jose,at least 50 per cent of the Palestinians were forced from their homes, according to Israeli archival records and documented by Benny Morris, who is apparently no longer a New Historian.

I know certainly more Benny Morris than you do, but how can Abbas be wrong as he was there while Benny Morris was born in 1948?

By the way, 100% of Jews were forced out of their homes in East Jerusalem. I hope you don't apply double standards..

Beacuse double standards would mean antisemitism.


Yoni1

Thu, 12/30/2010 - 14:31

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1 point

Never mind those in Iraq ...


Joe Millis

Thu, 12/30/2010 - 14:44

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-1 points

Whether we like it or not, there are Palestinians, they call it a naqba (hence the quotes). And to quote the Israeli singer Muki: "Everyone talks about peace, but no one talks about justice". No justice for both sides, no peace.


Joe Millis

Thu, 12/30/2010 - 14:45

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-1 points

It's called history, Jose. I doubt you know more Benny Morris than I, but if it makes you happy...


jose (not verified)

Thu, 12/30/2010 - 14:45

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1 point

And nearly 1,000,000 Jews, totally uninvolved in the Arab-Israeli conflict, were expelled on their ethnic origins.
A good part of them settled in Israel and I can certainly understand why they don't appreciate much Arabs in general, although I criticise their racist views. But I criticise mostly the racism in Muslim countries, much more prevalent and much more vicious.


jose (not verified)

Thu, 12/30/2010 - 14:46

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1 point

It's called history, Jose.

It is called revisionism, in fact.


jose (not verified)

Thu, 12/30/2010 - 14:47

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1 point

And it is evident that you don't know Benny Morris or you would avoid searching support from him.


Joe Millis

Thu, 12/30/2010 - 14:50

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0 points

Good for you, Jose. Welcome to the club of those who criticise medieval religious legislation. I hear the lorry with the medals has just gone through Sha'ar Hagai on its way to you.
Boogaloo on.


Joe Millis

Thu, 12/30/2010 - 14:51

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-1 points

Jose. Grow up.


Jonathan Hoffman

Thu, 12/30/2010 - 14:57

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1 point

Great article, thanks Kahina


Armchair Quarterback

Thu, 12/30/2010 - 19:47

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-1 points

"Jose. Grow up."

Joe when exactly was the last time you experienced a Sheffield flood ? The day Posner grows up Wycombe Wanderers will win the champions league


Joe Millis

Thu, 12/30/2010 - 19:54

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-1 points

Not entirely sure what a Sheffield flood is. Do I want to know?
As for Wycombe Wanderers, as far as I am aware the only good thing about Adam's Park is that it is the home of "London" Wasps.


Armchair Quarterback

Thu, 12/30/2010 - 20:09

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-1 points

0))


jose (not verified)

Thu, 12/30/2010 - 20:16

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1 point

Try to be a bit more focused on the subject rather than indulging in ad hominem and appeal to ridicule.


jose (not verified)

Thu, 12/30/2010 - 20:17

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1 point

0))

Your greatest contribution in one month, Wheelchair !


jose (not verified)

Thu, 12/30/2010 - 20:18

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1 point

The day Posner grows up Wycombe Wanderers will win the champions league

Where did you see Posner, by the way, Wheelchair?


Yoni1

Thu, 12/30/2010 - 20:37

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1 point

"Whether we like it or not, there are Palestinians"

Nope. It's called a canard. As big as the Protocols and just as ugly, and just as readily swallowed by idiots.


Yoni1

Thu, 12/30/2010 - 20:40

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2 points

Millis telling Jose to grow up is like Mickey Mouse telling the MGM lion to be more fierce, more like Mickey Mouse.

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