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A Counterintuitive Observation

Reader comment on item: [The Gaza Withdrawal:] A Democracy Killing Itself

Submitted by Ron Thompson (United States), Aug 19, 2005 at 08:56

I'm annoyed at watching two Network News reports of the Gaza withdrawal tonight (Thursday). Doesn't anyone see the utter contrast between the way the Israelis are handling this painful dispute among themselves, and the way any Arab or Moslem country in the world would handle such a dispute (i.e. with an upsurge of mindless lethality).

There is something almost wonderful in watching some of the settlers, or the 'outsiders' from Israel ....... arguing with or browbeating or pleading with the soldiers. While it hasn't been perfectly nonviolent, still, there have been no fatalities or even serious harm-intended violence.

So it was intensely annoying to see two news anchors talk again in terms of 'moral equivalence', as if the manner of Israelis disputing among themselves bore any relation whatsoever to any inter-Arab or inter-Moslem dispute.
Why isn't someone saying, loudly, to 400 million Arabs or to 1.2 billion Moslems, this is how a civilized people handles even the bitterest disputes. From this point of view, the process has been almost a joy to watch.

The failure to point this out is part of the larger problem behind George Bush's colossal mistake in thinking he could bring democracy to the Middle East at the point of a sword.

Infinitely better if he had said to the Arab world, "There IS a Democracy in the Middle East - Israel's. And even if's painful to hear, you ought it consider it as a model for a government drawing its legitimacy from the people under a Rule of Law, instead of trying to destroy it by methods, especially suicide bombing, which have metastasized around the world, and are increasingly coming home to roost, as in Iraq." (I admit that while I have great sympathy for the innocent victims of the hateful terrorists in Baghdad and elsewhere, I can't help but think that many of those would probably be dancing in the streets if such violence were being inflicted, as it has been, on Israeli civilians by Palestinian murderers)

Let the crucial lesson of Means and Ends, as being shown by the Israelis before our eyes, and so radically unlearned by any Arab society, be talked up and pointed out before the World. Ron Thompson
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