Sunday, January 30, 2005

Evaluating Sharansky

Natan Sharansky, as I wrote a few days back, is my choice to become the next Israeli Prime Minister. It's becoming apparent to me that he's very misunderstood.

AngryArab asserts that he's opposing Sharon from the right, which makes him a right-wing fanatic. Barry Freedman, who is a right-wing fanatic, wrote in the Jewish Star, a Long Island paper, that he's all for Sharansky because Sharansky insists that the Palestinians democratize before Palestine becomes a state. Then he says he's completely opposed to a Palestinian state under any circumstances.

It's a shame, but Sharansky's image as a right-winger is pretty much solely based on his pro-democracy stance. His criticism of Sharon is not the Barry Freedman-brand, the simple call for Greater Israel. It is that Sharon does not care enough about what is going to happen in Gaza after the Israelis leave. Sharansky's core belief is that a Palestinian entity that is non-democratic is not worth making peace with because the peace will not last. But unlike the right-wing fanatics, he's not a rejectionist. And contrary to the assumptions of the anti-Zionists, being against Disengagement (which many of them are anyway, which should clue them in) does not a right-winger make.

Two things that Sharansky could do to help his case though:

1. He should criticize the Bush administration for its soft stance on Saudi Arabia. The place is a fascist state.

2. He should explain better how Israel can help the Palestinians develop democratic institutions. His op-ed pieces, which are rightly critical of Israel's position of not caring what kind of government the Palestinians have, should now explain, with specifics, what Israeli leaders should do to help Palestinian democracy along.


At 2:56 PM, Blogger Irina Tsukerman said...

There's only one reason Bush supports the Saudis, and that's cheap oil. As long as we're remain dependent on oil as our main source of energy, we'll be also dependent on Saudis and their kind.

At 3:04 PM, Blogger Michael Brenner said...

Saudi oil is not worth it.

At 8:47 PM, Blogger Irina Tsukerman said...

Morally - no. But practically, I can't imagine this country without oil


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