Israel supports democracy – except in the case of Egypt There is a clear consensus in Israel about the necessity of democracy, but when it comes to Egypt, suddenly Israelis are shaking.

Posted: February 7, 2011 in Uncategorized

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* Published 02:07 06.02.11
* Latest update 02:07 06.02.11

Israel supports democracy – except in the case of Egypt
There is a clear consensus in Israel about the necessity of democracy, but when it comes to Egypt, suddenly Israelis are shaking.
By Roy Arad

There is a clear consensus in Israel about the necessity of democracy, spanning from supporters of former Balad chairman Azmi Bishara to friends of National Union MK Yaakov Katz. In other words, broad disagreement can be found within the wide range of opinions, but no one opposes the holding of elections, including the accompanying baseless election campaigns and sleepy election monitors. To a large extent, even if people have critiques of the scope of democracy and the electoral system, there is clearly no opposition to the democratic idea.

But when it comes to Egypt, suddenly Israelis are shaking. The very words “Muslim Brotherhood” cause commentators jaws to drop, even though I do not think anyone here would oppose a common border or peace agreement with Saudi Arabia, the most Muslim nation of all. Former Prime Minister Ehud Olmert made every effort to promote an agreement with the Saudis, and sharia law (the legal code of Islam ) did not prevent him from doing so.

In a democratic Egypt, even if the Muslim Brotherhood joins the coalition – like Shas here – there is no doubt that Islamic laws will not be imposed as strictly as in Saudi Arabia. As long as the democratic system is preserved, more or less, such matters maintain their own dynamic. If anything, Egypt has a Communist tradition, and the pendulum could just as well swing in a more secular direction there. Read more

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