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Israel-Election Project Essay

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     This paper seeks to analyse any aspect or aspects on the role of the ‘Israel-Palestine Conflict’ in the 2008 US presidential election. This paper takes the position that the conflict between the two countries is an important issue in the coming presidential election and any position taken by each of the candidates could materially affect one’s chances in the polls.

      There is the political aspect of the Israel-Palestine Conflict as far as the 2008 US presidential election is concerned. Each presidential candidate’s position on the issue could seriously affect one’s chance in the elections.  American voters consider it as an issue on how the candidates will consider the conflict as that of American relationship with Iran, Iraq or any country of the world where America has an interest.   The influence on voters will have to be linked on how the presidential candidates address the issue on peace and security of America. The issue on the conflict is linked to America’s problem of terrorism,  To illustrate, the candidates may or may not support Israel over that of Palestine. Support for Israel may mean having to protect Israel in case Iran will attack Israel since Iran and other countries are linking its relationship with America on how America is treating the issue.  While the Arab countries want the Americans to take out it influence on the conflict, the latter could not do so since many believe that America has been a part of what is the present status of the conflict as a result of supporting the establishment of Israel’s territory in the Middle East.

      The two dominant candidates of the two major US political parties, have actually diverged on the Israel-Palestine conflict where Obama of the Democratic Party, would be expected to take the role of ‘honest broker’ while McCain of Republican Party,  would most likely continue fighting the Islamic extremist as a result of the conflict. McCain is expected to continue what has been done by George Bush from the first day in office.  Given that the Bush and McCain are both republicans, it is not surprising to see continuation of the programs (Anderson, 2003; Weidenbaum, 1997).  As to how the American voters will take the issue in the presidential election is matter that must be decided comparably to the issue on US-Iraq relation. If voters would like the continuation of the program of Bush in going against the Islam extremists, then most probably people would vote for McCain, otherwise they would be voting for Obama who, being a democrat, seems to treat the Israel-Palestine conflict as of lesser priority over that of the US economy (The Irish Times (2008). But since the Israel-Palestine conflict will also have its economic repercussions then Senator Obama, is in indeed very careful in issuing statements about the position he is taking. This is in the context of the use of government funds in either taking a position on the issue.

       Mr. Philips, who is a known Middle East expert opined that McCain is less sympathetic towards the Palestinian side which means that a short-term outcome of peace talks, which McCain still supports, would most likely to be too optimistic. Compared with Senator Obama, Mr. Philips sees that former would more likely bring the parties to the negotiation table if elected into office.  The similar supports of the two presidential candidates for peace talks between leaders of the two conflicting nations were made in their June speeches to the American Israel Public Affair Committee (LaFranchi, 2008)

      The less tolerant attitude of McCain to the cause of Palestine was evident when he made a statements that there is a need ensure that Israel’ people can live safely when time comes that Palestine leadership is consenting and capable of delivering peace.   The same could also be inferred when he stated that a peace process that believes in terrorists can never result in peace (LaFranchi, 2008) . The statement is taken to refer to Hamas control in Gaza (Erlanger, S. 2007). Obama on the other viewed that the security of Israel as “sacrosanct”, whereby he proposed a defence cooperation between Israel and US with $30 billion in the form of assistance to Israel for the next ten year (LaFranchi, 2008).  Obama, by his action, is supporting Israel just like McCain coinciding with statement made that lasting peace is the result of real security. Said position is in a sense the same as that taken by President Bush, thus making him to be no different with the opposite side. Senator Obama is taken by many that he is just acting as traditional politician in making careful position about the Israel-Palestine conflict. However, Obama sounded a little different by stating that he would not wait until the waning days of his term, apparently attacking his Bush and Clinton who had done peace talks on the final months of their presidencies (LaFranchi, 2008).

      It can be concluded that the Isreal-Palestine conflict has both its political and economic repercussions which the two presidential candidates will have to address with their careful statements before the presidential elections. Politicians are politicians and that whatever statements before the election will really have a great effect on their chances in getting into the office. As to whether they will fulfil their positions or promises on the issue is of course a separate matter.

References:

Anderson, B. (2003) The Rise of Southern Republicans; The Mississippi Quarterly, Vol. 56, 2003

Erlanger, S. (2007) Hamas Forces Seize Control Over Much of Gaza, {www document} URL, http://www.nytimes.com/2007/06/13/world/middleeast/13cnd-mideast.html?_r=1&scp=7&sq=Hamas%20control%20in%20Gaza.&st=cse&oref=slogin, Accessed July 26, 2008

LaFranchi, H. (2008) Obama and McCain diverge on Israeli-Palestinian conflict, {www document} URL, http://origin.csmonitor.com/2008/0722/p01s01-uspo.html , Accessed July 26,2008

The Irish Times (2008), Poll shows Obama well ahead on economic issues, http://www.irishtimes.com/newspaper/world/2008/0717/1216073186159.html, {www document} URL Accessed July 26, 2008, Accessed July 26,2008

Weidenbaum, W.  (1997) A Republican’s Post-Election Agenda for Economic Growth ; Challenge, Vol. 40