Friday, April 3, 2009

The Lieberman leaning

If Israelis think their foreign minister's ascent is an aberration, they're being disingenuous about the nation's rightwing forces

Seth Freedman, Thursday 2 April 2009

" Yesterday's tub-thumping tirade by Israel's new foreign minister and deputy prime minister sent tremors through political circles, both internally and internationally. Politicians and pundits alike scrambled to distance themselves from Avigdor Lieberman's vitriol, implying that his views are utterly at odds with mainstream Israeli thinking, as though he and his ideology simply sprang out of a vacuum....

The Gaza "withdrawal" pulled the wool over the eyes of none but the most ardent members of the "Israel right or wrong" brigade. Annapolis was rendered all but obsolete as soon as Olmert signed the agreement with one hand while concurrently rubberstamping settlement expansion with the other. The treadmill effect – where Israeli leaders act as though they're forever breathlessly running towards peace while never actually moving from the spot to which they're rooted – means that those backing the two-state solution are no nearer to realising their ambitions now than they ever have been.....

The incumbent foreign minister is merely the latest manifestation of a 60-year-old malaise, and to pretend otherwise is to lead observers up the garden path. Israeli voters have been making our bed for decades, plumping up the pillows and smoothing out the sheets at every electoral opportunity: now we get to lie in it alongside Lieberman. That speaks volumes about the entire country, not just one politican and his master-plan."

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