Mind Games

A Palestinian acquaintance today suggested his ideal situation: voters should come out en masse in support of hard-line Israeli politicians such as Lieberman not because they agree with their politics, but rather because it would prove to the world how unbalanced, unjust, and unequal the true nature of Israeli domestic policy. Now, I (and many others) had always had the sense that Netanyahu and Likud’s election last year was a tactic of his opposition to get him elected, see him *&$% up, and then they would come in to clean up the mess. Very George W. – Obama. Probably not the voting tactic I would have used, but it certainly seems to be effective.

Primarily I was surprised at the assuredness with which this opinion was proffered. It was put forth as the most sensible solution: elect, by a landslide, the candidate who would make life the absolute most miserable for Palestinians in a very public manner and thus show the world the “truth” about Israeli government. It took me aback at first. My tendency would be to elect the most forward-thinking (liberal, progressive, what-have-you) coalition I could get my hands on. But in reality, it definitely has an aspect of future-proof-ness that is hard to deny. If the goal is to enact change from both the top and the bottom and all the way through, then that is where it must come from. Voters elect the hard-line conservatives. The conservatives show the world how they abuse civil rights. The world comes down on them and they resign or are pushed out. A more socially just regime comes into power and, with time, things just…might…work…out.

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