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July 23, 2006

The Meaning Of Democracy Palestine/Middle East

Yesterday, it was Alan Dershowitz. Today, it's Noah Feldman, NYU law professor and adjunct senior fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations. A couple of law professors arguing that up is down and black is white. Billmon highlights these passages:

For its part, Israel is gambling that the right strategy is to make the people who elected Hamas and a government that includes Hezbollah reckon the costs of their representatives' recklessness. That is why Israel has targeted not only Hezbollah leaders and strongholds but has also bombed infrastructure that sustains daily life for everybody in Lebanon. From Israel's standpoint, this is no longer a fight with nonstate terrorists who are holding their fellow citizens hostage to their tactics. It is, rather, war between Israel and countries that are pursuing (or tolerating) violent policies endorsed (or at least accepted) by their electorates. [...]

Democracy can no longer be seen as an end in itself, and the fate of peoples lies in their own hands. [Emphasis added]

Translation: you can vote, but if we don't like who you vote for we have the right to bomb you. So much for our much-vaunted eagerness to spread democracy in the Middle East.

It's staight out of Chomsky: public "intellectuals" tying themselves in knots to justify the crimes of empire. It's seldom so appallingly, nakedly obvious, though. So I guess we can at least thank Dershowitz and Feldman for that: they've laid it bare for all to see.

As for Feldman's argument, one is reminded of Henry Kissinger's famous statement regarding US support for the coup that resulted in the overthrow and death of democratically-elected Chilean president Salvador Allende, and his replacement by the monstrous Augusto Pinochet:

I don't see why we need to stand by and watch a country go communist due to the irresponsibility of its own people. The issues are much too important for the Chilean voters to be left to decide for themselves.

Democracy, get it?

Posted by Jonathan at July 23, 2006 11:05 PM  del.icio.us digg NewsVine Reddit YahooMyWeb


Didn't the attack on the Trade Towers consist of an
attack on a country which is pursuing (or
tolerating) violent policies endorsed
(or at least accepted) by their electorates?

Posted by: at July 24, 2006 08:15 AM