“The Arabs are voting in droves”
By Chris Doyle
17 March 2015
One would think this was a wonderful endorsement of Israeli politics. A huge Arab voter turnout. Democracy at work. A state of all its citizens.
Not for the incumbent Israeli Prime Minister, Binyamin Netanyahu.
Posting on his Facebook Page, he wrote: “The right-wing government is in danger. Arab voters are coming out in droves to the polls. Left-wing organizations are bussing them out. ”
It seems that nothing is more dangerous to him than an Arab that votes.
But just imagine if an Arab or Palestinian leader warned of "Jews voting in droves". The charges of anti-Semitism and Jew hatred would rightly be deafening. But in Israeli politics….
The reality is that Bibi knows his constituency and that he is scaring his support base into voting because they too dread the idea, the outrage, of droves of Arabs voting. All the main Israeli parties have publicly stated that they do not want to be reliant on Arab parties in the Knesset.
Netanyahu has no problem with forming a coalition with Avigdor Lieberman, the Israeli Foreign Minister and leader of Yisrael Beiteinu. For Lieberman “Israeli Arabs” are a fifth column and "Those who are against us, there's nothing to be done - we need to pick up an axe and cut off his head."
The region has enough head choppers already without any more.
The sad reality is that Israel’s democracy is only paper thin, and is only accepted as long as the Israeli Jewish component calls all the shots. In this election the Joint List (that includes the Palestinian parties) has shaken up the political system threatening to become the third or fourth largest block in the Knesset. A true democracy would celebrate this but sadly this is not Israel and will not be until it genuinely becomes a state of all its citizens.