JOHN CHUCKMAN COMMENT: GEORGE BUSH PUT DEMOCRACY ON A PEDESTAL? PLUS THE MEANING OF DEMOCRATIC VALUES – WHY ISRAEL CANNOT MEANINGFULLY BE CALLED A DEMOCRACY   Leave a comment


 

 

JOHN CHUCKMAN

POSTED RESPONSES TO A COLUMN BY NEIL REYNOLDS IN TORONTO’S GLOBE AND MAIL

Good God, here is a column delivered directly from Cloudcuckooland.

Indeed, George Bush is a war criminal.

He also was ready to sign off on any repressive measure at home that came along.

His vice-president, another war criminal and on whom he depended heavily, is surely one of blackest characters in modern American history- a man we easily imagine as a henchman for Hitler or Stalin.

Iraq was not about democracy, and truly only a badly uninformed person or a propagandist would say that it was.

I very much suspect Mr Reynolds of being the latter.

Iraq was about dumping Israel’s most implacable enemy, about dumping a former American friend who no longer followed the imperial line and had become quite an inconvenience, and, way down there on the level of the mysteries of human psychology, Iraq was about pathetic George Bush trying to outdo his always more intelligent and successful father.

What Bush did in Iraq was the equivalent of having used a nuclear weapon on civilians.

Please see my piece, Hiroshima, Mon Amour:

http://chuckmanwords.wordpress.com/2009/06/01/hiroshima-mon-amour/

Neil Reynolds, it actually is rather disgusting that someone living in the freedom and comfort of Canada could write this intellectual filth.
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From another reader:

“Canada…peopled by intellectual midgets…”

My, that certainly is testimony of high intellectual achievement on the writer’s part.

I do believe, when you call names to an entire group of people, it is called prejudice.

It certainly reflects ignorance.

And we may add further, using a pseudonym, adds cowardice to the writer’s list of illustrious qualities.
______________________
From another reader:

“Much is made of Israeli democracy.

“But Israel is only a democracy because its democracy hasn’t been challenged.

“Israelis would not contemplate submitting to an Arab majority, so Israel isn’t really a democracy at all. Its constitution is increasingly interpreted to exclude the possibility.”

Yes, but there’s even more on the issue of democracy.

One likes to believe that a genuine democracy also applies democratic principles abroad.

Yet nothing could be further from that concept than Israel’s practices.

It behaves like a muscle-bound bully towards all its neighbors and is friendly only to tyrants like Mubarak who assist its narrowly-defined interests.

We have countless examples of this anti-democratic behavior, but its ghastly behavior towards Gaza over the last four years is a breathtaking example.

Yes, Israel resembles apartheid South Africa in its “Bantustan” policies. People with sterling credentials on the subject have called Israel’s practices apartheid – Bishop Tutu, Nelson Mandela, and Jimmy Carter.

And while we’re speaking of South Africa, let no one forget Israel’s secret deals with that state concerning atomic weapons. Simply ghastly.

Israel’s apologists are addicted to name-calling when anyone points out these egregious abuses of human rights, decades and decades of them.

But is one to give up all principles, all concern for justice and fair-play for fear of being called names?

I think not. It is precisely in such matters where we can define those who love freedom and those who only mouth empty words.
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The bottom line regarding Israel and democratic values is easily stated, without name-calling and citing only facts.

What kind of democracy kills 1400 people in a giant, fenced-in refugee camp, which is what Gaza is?

What kind of democracy kills between 300 and 400 hundred children as part of that horror?

What kind of democracy carefully calculates the just above-starvation level of calories and then enforces a blockade – illegal to be sure – to keep only that level of sustenance going across the border?

What kind of a democracy attacks an unarmed flotilla of humanitarians on the high seas, killing a number of them and terrifying the rest?

What kind of democracy drops countless cluster bombs in civilian areas of Southern Lebanon?

What kind of a democracy targets UN observers bravely doing their jobs and kills them?

What kind of democracy weekly steals more of the property of others in the West Bank and Jerusalem, using the contrived laws to do so?

What kind of democracy assassinates, assassinates, and assassinates – instead of talking to people?

As I’ve written before, we can only be grateful there are not more such democracies in the Middle East.

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