Monday, February 16, 2009

The Roughest, Toughest Divorce Lawyer in Town

Bradley Burston cites Elah Alkelai convincingly, to my mind, to explain that the voters didn't vote to block an agreement with the Palestinians but rather the opposite: they voted to ensure their representatives at the negotiating table were tough bastards in the best meaning of the term.
The Israeli public may have voted for the right not because it rejects the idea of peace deals, partition, and a two-state solution, but because it believes the right is better qualified to find a way to carry out that undeniably painful process...

Think of it as severance of an arranged marriage, and the vote Israelis cast last week was for what they perceive as the roughest, toughest divorce lawyer in town.
Had I thought Netanyahu would drive the hardest bargain, I'd have voted for him, too; the reason I didn't is because past experience indicates he's actually a poor negotiator, who loses control and capitulates the moment the going gets hard. Olmert was vastly his superior in that respect, but alas, Olmert allowed himself to be ousted for corruption.

6 comments:

adam d. said...

That is exactly correct. Olmert has had fantastic instincts, and in his lawyerly way has positioned Israel more skillfully than his predecessors had done.

Still, Bibi's bottom up message is one I'd like the world to hear about now.

Anonymous said...

But won't the continued expansion of settlements make an agreement more difficult to reach no matter who is in charge of negotiations?

Anonymous said...

Question for Anonymous:
Do you believe there is any level of impeccable Israeli behaviour that will lead to unthreatening neighbours?
At least in daily life if you happen to have to get along with a bully I have never observed one during almost 50 years in offices who reacts to politeness and/or concessions by moderating his or her bullying.
And a lot of those I have observed trying the conciliatory method with the ruthless were very smart and skilled people it did not help them one bit.
If Israel wants to do something about the settlements strictly in its own interest for its own well-being that's another viewpoint but the hope of winning anything by doing it from anybody else is totally futile.
rgds,
Silke

adam d. said...

Silke,

You're question is well phrased. We've seen that even Buddhist statues are not impeccably well enough behaved. I don't now how a living society of Jews could do better.

Anonymous said...

adam d.
thank you for the compliment and for the example of the Buddha statues - I'll hereby appropriate it
Silke

adam d. said...

go for it.