Israel and democracy? #4 Kim, E.

Values essentially refer to the attitudes people hold with respect to other people or objects on his or her own perspective. It also refers to the general consensus one holds on ethics which defines the actions on how one decides what is right or wrong, and what one “ought” to say, do and live. The concept of value includes personal and social values where personal values become more apparent depending on one’s preference while social values can be more abstract, governing an individual’s behavior within a society.

Israel is a country that prides itself as being the only democratic state in the Middle East. As a democratic state, it has developed a resilient friendship with the U.S. partly because of its endorsement in progressive values such as freedom of religion, speech and human rights like in America. On March 24, an Israeli soldier killed a Palestinian terrorist in the lands of Hebron which brought on a heated debate regarding such values. Claiming that the soldier had done so out of self-defense, his case which was followed by an arrestment brought on dissenting voices among Israel’s political leadership and the public opinion. After all, the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) stands as the righteous structure in the Israeli national consensus because conscription is so intrinsic along the country’s history and almost every Jewish citizen sees his or her children serving in the army. Indeed, it was no surprise that a public opinion poll stated that the majority of Israeli public believed that the soldier should not have been arrested. On the other hand, the IDF criticized the soldier’s action saying that it was against the IDF moral code which emphasized both strength and morality, standing up for the state’s democratic values. The result was mass slandering on the IDF’s stance by right-wing politicians and public opinion. On the other hand, Palestinians were not so impressed by the IDF’s democratic efforts. They called the incident a cold-blooded murder and said that it was the Israeli army that killed 200 Palestinians, who were mostly defenseless, in the beginning of the current waves of violence. The military was further denounced for setting off extreme-right activists who attacked Palestinian civilians and destroyed their properties in Palestinian neighborhoods in the settlements. That being said, Israel’s democratic values are in jeopardy as its flaws of democracy keeps being politicized domestically and internationally as questions keep coming up on whether it can remain democratic at the same time as they are occupying other people.

Sources:

Savir, Uri. “Has Israeli army become defender of democracy?” Al-Monitor. Apr. 2016. Web. 02 May 2016. <http://www.al-monitor.com/pulse/originals/2016/04/israel-idf-eizenkot-defender-democracy-war-crimes-turkey.html&gt;

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Israel and democracy? #4 Kim, E.

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