Saturday, December 29, 2012

Boycott the election

What are they finding so interesting here about Benjamin Netanyahu and Avigdor Lieberman running on the same ticket? After all, both of them have been in the same coalition for many years now and no one is able to point to any ideological difference between them.

Salman Masalha || Boycott the election

The media adore elections. Everyone here wants to feel like America but is choosing only the glittery American shell. No one is talking about the essence. Everyone loves to talk about social justice, because its very fashionable. No one is saying from what to subtract and in whom and in what to invest.

What are they finding so interesting here about Benjamin Netanyahu and Avigdor Lieberman running on the same ticket? After all, both of them have been in the same coalition for many years now and no one is able to point to any ideological difference between them. Moreover it is possible to build another story on top of the infrastructure of their joint list Likud - Beiteinu (literally Likud - Our Home) and add another home, Habayit Hayehudi (the Jewish Home). Indeed, who is able to point out serious differences among all those parties?

And it doesn’t stop there. On issues such as occupation, war, peace, national justice and other such “unimportant” trifles, there is no difference among the Zionist parties, as evidenced by the hopscotch of Knesset members jumping ungracefully from there to here and from here to there. The jumpers of all stripes are doing this in the awareness that there is no abyss gaping between the parties out there. The transition does not require concessions on any positions, heavens forefend. All that is required of that the player tread lightly, as in stick out a foot and step in it.

From the perspective of the Arab voter, the grassroots Israeli apartheid is working overtime in the media. They combine different parties under the rubric of the code name “Arab parties” with the  aim of keeping an entire public out of the political discourse in Israel. For example, it is possible to see a manifestation of this in Ari Shavit’s op-ed “Israel’s senseless Elections (Haaretz English Edition, December 20). “The Israelis, unaware of what they are doing, are making an irrevocable decision to perpetuate the occupation and to end Zionism,” he writes. Moreover, “But apart from Tzipi Livni and Zahava Gal-On, nobody talks about it. Apart from Hatnuah and Meretz, nobody cries out.”

In Shavit’s political lexicon strictly kosher Israeli parties like Hadash and Balad, which take an oath of loyalty to the state of Israel in Israel’s Knesset, simply do not exist. In Shavit’s lexicon kosher Knesset members like Dov Khenin and Ahmed Tibi do not exist. Hence, this being the case, the election is being conducted in Shavit & Co.’s “Jewish state.”

There is also the despicable species of those whose sole desire is to use the Arab citizens in order to replace the right-wing government and then throw them away. These are heard expressing regret that the Arabs are not uniting into a single Arab party and increasing their representation. Well, here is a scoop: As among the Jews, the Arabs too are divided between left and right – with respect to both political and social issues. As among the Jews, there are Arabs who are secular, religious, traditional and so forth.

Among the Arabs there are parties parallel to the Zionist parties. The United Arab List – Ta’al is the Arab parallel to Habayit Hayehudi: This is an Islamic party, pure and simple, the party of “the Muslim Home” in which there is no trace of Christian or Druze Arabs, never mind truly secular Arabs.

There’s the argument that says an Arab who doesn’t vote is equivalent to someone who votes for Netanyahu – an argument that comes from the despicable racist species. The real question is why would an Arab citizen anoint Netanyahu clones to reign over him? After all, we have not heard from any party a commitment that Arab citizens will be represented in the government, any government that arises. We have not heard a commitment of this sort from any of those who are aspiring to replace Netanyahu. This being so, for whom should we vote? For being a “blocking bloc,” in the sense of disposable Arabs who do the job and then can skedaddle?

All the political rushing about and all the commentaries will not change the picture. There is nothing new under the heavens of Israeli politics. It seems that the headline summing up this election is “Israel snores.” Let it be said, then, loud and clear: No thanks. Therefore I am calling for a boycott of the election.
Published: Opinion-Haaretz, Dec. 26, 2012


Facebook comments:
Post a Comment

Middle East
  • The Arab world's quagmire

    Only a society that can engage in introspection and self-examination can emerge from its dark past and march confidently to a different future. Otherwise, it will continue to sink into the same marshy swamp.

    Read more

    A Feeble Middle East

    The West learned on its own flesh that this region conducts itself by other codes. Iran has continued to entrench its standing by means of its religious ideology. The toppling of Saddam Hussein shattered the illusion of the existence of a unifying “Iraqi identity” and gave an encouraging shot in the arm to Iran, which is forging ahead.

    Read more

  • The decay in the Arab world

    With great sadness, it can be said that in the absence of a sane civil alternative, the Arab world will continue along this path.

    Read more

    Neither Arab nor Spring

    The vicissitudes that have, for some reason, been collectively dubbed the "Arab Spring" are neither Arab nor Spring. One can say that they are actually living proof of the identity crisis and reverberating bankruptcy of Arab nationalism.

    Read more

  • another title

Israel - Palestine
  • Our troubles come from us

    And so we have reached a situation in which every Arab is concerned with his own problems and everyone talks about what preoccupies him personally – that is, his own troubles.

    Read more

  • Never-ending tragedy

    The Israeli right, in all its forms, wants exclusively Jewish control over all of the Land of Israel. To the Palestinians who live in this space, it promises residency – temporary, of course, on condition that they keep their heads down, accept their designated status and behave accordingly.

    Read more
  • Solomon’s Mosque

    Religion, every religion, is the No. 1 enemy of nationalism. But under conditions of tension, such as tribal warfare, these polar opposites combine into a toxic soup that consumes all common sense.

    Read more

  • They see not, nor know

    The term "neutralize" is very popular with people who have served in the security and expulsion forces. The question to be asked is, What did the poet who spoke of "neutralization" mean in this plan?

    Read more

    For Jews only

    From the moment the pundits followed in the footsteps of the politicians, both large and small, they carried this noxious melody everywhere. They were part of legitimizing the illegitimate in Israeli politics.

    Read more

  • With yearning soul

    The Zionism that aspired to establish a "Jewish home" in the Jews' "ancient homeland" did not take into consideration the fact that the land was not empty. It thus adopted the principle of population transfer, based on the same ancient biblical tradition.

    Read more

    Rabbis of the Dry Bones

    Racism surfaces when a society loses its self-confidence and turns to seeking ways to defend itself against what is different and perceived as increasingly threatening.

    Read more

  • الحلم

    أنّي في سجن جدران بيضاء
    حيث لا يعرفني أحدٌ، وأصواتٌ
    تختفي في الرّدهات، وأضواء تستنشقُ
    جمجمتي اللّاهثة.
    تتمة الكلام

Press photo to Email



Site Archive


  • The pit and the pendulum

    In those days, we did not drink four goblets of wine, because everything that gladdens the human heart is not a part of our custom.

    Read more

  • Welcome Back to History

    Islam, like other imperialist ideologies, still needs enemies to flourish. Enemies have served Islam in the past as fuel for its wagons. Without enemies Islam declines and stagnates...

    Read more

  • another title

  • Balkrishna Sama

    Man Is God

    He who loves flowers, has a tender heart.
    he who cannot pluck their blooms,
    has a heart that's noble.

    Read more

  • Martin Niemöller

    First They Came

    First they came for the Communists
    And I did not speak out
    Because I was not a Communist.
    Then they came for the Socialist
    And I did not speak out
    Because I was not a Socialist.

    Read More

  • Salman Masalha

    The Song About the Child

    Boston Gospel Choir

    Text: Salman Masalha
    Composer: Stephen Feigenbaum