I’ve been kicking around the stunning victory of Hamas in the Palestinian elections in my head trying to figure what I wanted to say about it, but Mac’s already said it for me:
So…Hamas winning the Palestinian election…it puts President Bush in kind of a pickle, no?
He so badly wants to spread democracy to all and sundry, yet when a group he doesn’t approve of is democratically elected, he refuses to work with the new government until they change to please him. It appears that President Bush only likes democracy when it works in his favor [although this is not exactly a new and unique idea]. Guess you have to be careful of what you wish for.
I figured it was only a matter of time before one of the countries we’re trying to force democracy onto went ahead and used it to elect a bunch of folks we’d rather not see in power. I doubted it would be Iraq or Afghanistan because we’re pretty much pulling the strings in those elections already, but I hadn’t considered the possibility of the Palestinians as being particularly likely either. I find the whole situation a mite bit amusing in that uh-oh-what-are-ya-gonna-do-now-smart-boy way.
Which isn’t to say that I’m glad a terrorist organization is now in control of the Palestinian parliament because I have every confidence that Bush will handle this problem about as well as he’s handled the aftermath of the Iraq war, which is to say he’ll find every opportunity to fuck it up. Refusing to work with the new government isn’t a good first step. We’re always carrying on about how we want to spread democracy and let the people choose who their leaders will be so the least we can do is try and work with whomever the hell they’ve picked to represent them. Hypocrisy won’t go far to winning a lasting peace in the Middle East.