Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Nonviolent, democratic Arabs 'bad for Israel'

Egypt's revolution and Israel: 'Bad for the Jews'
Ilan Pappe, The Electronic Intifada: Spearheading the Israeli interpretation are the former Israeli ambassadors to Egypt... Their tirade can be summarized in the words of one of them, Zvi Mazael, who told Israeli television's Channel One on 28 January, 'this is bad for the Jews; very bad.' In Israel of course when you say 'bad for the Jews,' you mean the Israelis... But what is really bad for Israel is the comparison...

Nonviolent, democratic (be they religious or not) Arabs are bad for Israel... What is at stake here is the pretense that Israel is a stable, civilized, western island in a rough sea of Islamic barbarism and Arab fanaticism. The 'danger for Israel is that the cartography would be the same but the geography would change. It would still be an island, but of barbarism and fanaticism in a sea of newly formed egalitarian and democratic states.

In the eyes of large sections of Western civil society the democratic image of Israel has long ago vanished but it may now be dimmed and tarnished in the eyes of others who are in power and politics... One way or another the cry rising from Cairo's Tahrir Square is a warning that fake mythologies of the 'only democracy in the Middle East,' hardcore Christian fundamentalism (far more sinister and corrupt than that of the Muslim Brotherhood), cynical military-industrial corporate profiteering, neo-conservatism and brutal lobbying will not guarantee the sustainability of the special relationship between Israel and the United States.
Image source here.