1/27/2006

Hamas: The Downside of Democracy

In The Republic, Plato argues that democracy is the second worst form of government. It is only exceeded by tyranny. He goes on to demonstrate how a democracy can easily slip into a tyranny. Churchill was of a slightly different opinion, that democracy is the worst form of government, except for all those other forms that have been tried from time to time.
The recent election of Hamas as the governing party of Palestine is a perfect illustration of potential prolems with democracy. Hamas won 76 seats out of 132.
But really, one has to ask, would Fatah have been a better choice?
Certainly one might try to argue that at least Fatah was not a terrorist organization. However it is a very corrupt party and Yasser Arafat, when he was alive, was hardly a man of peace (Nobel Prize notwithstanding.)
I support Bush, Harper, Olmert and any other leader when they say they will not deal with a terrorist government. Hamas has repeatedly called for the annihilation of Israel. They cannot be considered our ally unless they are willing to deal in a professional, non-violent manner. If they want to be treated like a nation, then they need to act like one.
I have to be quite frank; I have little if any sympathy for Palestinians in their so-called fight for independence. I have even less sympathy for them than I do the Bloc and the PQ, if such a thing is possible. When Israel was first established as a nation, the Arabs in the region were offered partition, a chance to form a nation of their own (nevermind the fact that they had already been given Jordan). This offer was flatly refused. Then, as now, the Arab world was more concerned with the destruction of Israel than it was with peace. It seems very convenient to me that they should now want a nation. Should they ever build a nation, I consider it extremely unlikely that this would be the end of the matter.

3 comments:

Sean J. said...

The entire middle east situation is so confuzzled and (depending on who you talk to) misleading that I rarely bother to comment on the topic.

Regardless of what you've been presented with, who you believe, or where you stand there are some truths to the situation.

Whether you see them as heroes or hellions, Hamas *is* a terrorist organization.

Now, they are also a governing body and frankly that yellow snow out of me.

Moose Hunter said...

This election presents some very interesting issues and questions for the West. If Hamas is to be "ignored"; then on what basis? Are some voters better than others? Can the result of a fair election be ignored if we don't like them? If we can do that in this case, when do we do it again? Nope, this is not going to be dismissed with a wave of anybody's hand.

BTW, why would you have expected the resident Arabs to accept "partition" after having been dispossessed of their ancestral lands by a religious group, albeit an oppressed religious group?

Ruth said...

"why would you have expected the resident Arabs to accept "partition" after having been dispossessed of their ancestral lands"

Because "ancestral lands," as you call them, are a matter of perspective. The lands of the Middle East have changed hands many times. At the time just prior to partition, that unfortunate lump of sand was under British and French jurisdiction. As far as I am concerned, that gives the Jews just as much right to live there as the Arabs.

Interesting question regarding ignoring Hamas. I need to point out that Hitler was also elected. When war broke out, his democratic right to rule was certainly not in the forefront of anyone's mind. Just because you are elected does not make you a good ruler. It doesn't even give you the right to rule, necessarily.
Actually, a comment is not sufficient for all I have to say. I think I will post on this.

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