Democracy and Diplomacy

Read an article about any of the current international crisis, be it Ukraine/Russia, Israel/Gaza, or anywhere else and it is not too hard to read what people think is the chess master play, but then things get in the way.

In Israel, there’s a lot of talk of the right-wing parties dominating the coalition and people wondering why Netanyahu won’t just “do the right thing” as they see it. To us, bringing down a government is not big thing in the face of “doing the right thing.”

It’s possible that while the crisis lasts, the Labor Party and Shas could compensate for a departure of one or both of the other coalition members, but it would mean new elections right after a war, which would probably mean even more right wing MKs.

But why?

Well, because of democracy. Thinking that something is awful doesn’t mean that it’s unlikely. Would we prefer than Bibi is a dictator? Maybe then he could do whatever he wants!

Similarly, in the US we like to think that politicians should fall on their swords for “the right thing.” Obamacare might have been the one thing in the last decade that fit the bill. For the most part, political suicide doesn’t mean turning over the reins to someone better, it means someone worse. Politicians believe if they can hold on, they can do lots more incremental change and calculate whether the one big thing they’re asked to blow themselves up for is worth it.