I realize that I am reacting from a place that has never experienced what it is to live in Israel, but I can’t help but be so very disappointed by the outcome of their elections. Netanyahu has never shied away from his hawkish and aggressive foreign policies or his full on support of building settlements illegally in the West Bank. He has also made a show of annexing the Palestinian’s side of Jerusalem, which is wrong, Jerusalem is for everyone, not just one group. Netanyahu has exacerbated the Israeli-Palestinian conflict to higher levels and has viciously allowed the Gaza Strip to become an inhospitable place. I deeply believe that if the world would insist that Israel and Palestine come to an agreement and find a way to co-exist with 1967 borders, so many of the Middle East violence would diminish, not everything, but a peaceful accord between Israel and the Palestinians would take so many issues away from the radical element’s list of grievances that it would be a huge coup for peace for the entire world. I now worry for the entire region, for our ongoing negotiations with Iran and for the concept of peace in general. Netanyahu, I believe, wants war and we have enough Republicans who want war as well and together, they make for a toxic mix. I still can’t believe that the Israelis are willing to allow Netanyahu ride roughshod over their economy all because they are frightened; actually now that I think of it, Israel is an important example of what you sacrifice when you give into fear. Israel was a grand experiment in economic progressive principles and that grand experiment has been given over to privatization and military buildup, unfortunately that state of affairs wasn’t enough to get Netanyahu elected out of office, so in the end, I don’t know what will get Israel back to its economic progressive roots. I feel badly for them and their future.
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