Being Nowhere
Circus Tradition
Class Politics
Enormous Loss
Haditha Tragedy
Homeless Being
Illegal Camping Ordinance
Journalism Priviledge
Keep Us Safe
Leadership and the People

Lesser Evils
Lynching Iraq
News for Working People
Nice Cops
Palestinian Democracy
Poison Fish
Political Communication
Selective Memory
Vestigial Entrances

Palestinian Democracy

The Palestinians continue to embarrass American foreign policy. Though they have had elected leadership for over a generation, American policy depreciated its significance because Arafat was a charismatic and a man of war.

Now the Palestinians have managed a democratic and peaceful transfer of power while morning the loss of a beloved and wartime president -- and under foreign occupation in the bargain. Were this achieved in Iraq it would be seen as total vindication of American foreign policy and a sign that ‘civilization’ had been brought to the Middle East. In Tel Aviv, of course, the election is of minor interest. Before Israel is willing to end two generations of illegal occupation the Palestinians must bring the level of violence down to zero.

Over in Iraq a zero level of violence is not in anybody’s metric for success. But here the Palestinian election is a gloomy reminder that the second nail has been driven into the coffin of the American adventure. Not only was there no need to eliminate weapons of mass destruction, there was no need to provide the middle east with a local example of political freedom.














©Al Katz • Prof. of law SUNY, Buffalo, 1969-1989 (ret.)