Elections and the Shell-Shocked Left
The Dangerous Mizrachi Red-Herring
Currently, it looks as if it may prove harder to form the new coalition government than expected. This will provide at least some uplift to the spirits of the Center-Left which is still in a state of shock.
The election result obviously disappointed and dismayed many – especially in the media. As a result, many have been casting about for a scape-goat. This turns out to be voters of a Mizrachi background. They are variously supposed to be too hostile to the Arabs to appreciate the finer points of genuine peace-mongering, or too poor or uneducated to understand that by voting for Bibi they were voting against their own interests.
This reminded me of a talk I attended many years ago in the UK given by James Klugmann. James was one of the brilliant group of Cambridge communists associated with the spies Philby, Burgess and others before the Second World War. He was also a marvelous lecturer. Almost everyone who met him immediately called him James (his name was actually Norman).
In this particular talk, his purpose was to answer the question of why the then British Prime Minister, the Labour leader Harold Wilson, was such a failure and had betrayed the working class yet again. Klugmann said he had asked this question at an earlier version of the talk and a voice in the audience had shouted, 'because he's a bastard'. Klugmann responded that while this theory certainly had its attraction, he wasn't entirely sure it satisfied as an explanation.