Does the United States government think that too much democracy is a bad thing?
It seems so. Two stories are bothering me. First, the Bush administration is reclassifying documents already made public. This is of course in keeping with the way this Administration has handled practially everything, but knowledge about our government is fundamental to true democracy. What harm is there in leaving up cold war era documents?
Secondly, and more interesting, we have the question about support for the new Palestinian government. Hamas won a majority of seats in the Parliament. Because Hamas is on some list of terrorist organizations, the Administration will withhold all aid that we’ve been giving to the Palestinian people. Bush has been touting the uptick in democracy in the Middle East; clearly he only means democracy that kowtows to his views. How in the world do we justify this? Is this punishment for the Palestinian people who had the gall to select leaders we don’t like? Hamas is not the government. Hamas members will form the core of the administration and the majority of the legislators, but this does not mean that the philosophy of Hamas will become the policy of Palestine. If it does, if Palestine renounces its peace accords, if it calls for the destruction of Israel, then we have reason to act. But not now.
What’s Bush’s idea of democracy?