Tuesday, May 8, 2007

Pears and Apples?

Or maybe it's more like string beans and bananas?

According to this Newsweek article, the American public isn't really happy with their politicians vying for the Presidency. Israelis aren't crazy about our choices either.

In some way they're all the same, insulated by self-serving staff and led by pollsters.

The need for millions of dollars to cover campaign expenses and pay all those salaries have made politicians all over the world, marketing-sensitive puppets, rather than inspiring ideologues.

Abraham Lincoln could never have been elected in today's world. His plain face and long speeches wouldn't go over well on the media. Pictures of FDR being lifted into his wheelchair would make the front pages, and JFK's casual affairs would be prime time news.

Americans vote for politicians who are like their plastic-wrapped individual slices of cheese.

In Israel, it's harder to "wrap" the politicians, since within minutes you can find someone who went to the same nursery school, youth movement, army unit or doctor. The rules are getting tougher as Katzav and Ramon have discovered the hard way.

I have another question.
Does Israel need the same sort of politician they have in the United States?

The United States is considered as "the leader of the free world." Its security is firm. Its existence isn't in danger. No matter who's elected the next president, it really won't make any difference in substance. The "War in Iraq" is a skirmish, thousands and thousands of miles away from its borders. Yes, soldiers are being killed, but not in numbers which affect more than their families and friends. And as the politicians say, America did not have to start that war. The United States was not in any danger. Personally, I can't understand why thousands of Iraqis and Americans had to die to give Sadaam Hussein a "fair trial." He was executed, and people are still dying.

In Israel the stakes are bigger, much bigger. Our country is being threatened by the Arabs on our borders and even further afield. They've already, in the 59 years the State of Israel has existed, started wars and kept up rocket and terror attacks all the time.

We don't need pre-packaged politicians with American election advisers. That's how Hizbullah had such an easy time arming South Lebanon to attack us last summer. Former Prime Minister Ehud Barak, who is actually running again, at the advice of his American advisor, campaigned that he would withdraw the troops if elected. That's what he did, and to "sweeten it" for the terrorists, he did it so quickly that enormous quantities of expensive military equipment was left for the terrorists to use against us. For some peculiar reason, the Winograd Report glossed over it, just blaming those who were running the country last summer.

Israel does not need well-coiffed politicians or those who've had plastic surgery to make their eyes seem more open and alert.

We need true patriots who see the needs of our embattled country before any other considerations. That's the only type of person who can truly lead us.

G-d willing


Anonymous said...

Israel had an American politician at its helm ... he's called Bibi. He ruled by public opinion and made a mess of things (albeit, Barak and Olmert have shown him up on that front).

Frankly, Bibi did a much better job as finance/foreign minister. The country needs a completely new leadership ... have you considered running?

Batya said...

I agree about Bibi; that's why I'm nervous about giving him another chance. Not enough substance.

Who would vote for me? This blog never even made the finals as top blog... though my Arab Mansions article/series has...