TCU Daily Skiff Thursday, April 22, 2004
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Bush should try to stick to his guns
President shifts stance on Israel’s harsh policies


Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon’s hostile policies have produced more and more conflict in an area of the world that is already rife with violence. President Bush has, in the past, taken the sensible steps to condemn such brutal actions, but his administration seems to be changing that position for what appears to be nothing more than election year politics.

While Israel unquestionably has the right to defend itself, Sharon’s attempt to disengage from Palestinian territories has been marked a controversial wall which amounts to nothing more than a land grab and two assassinations that have antagonized Muslims all over the world.

In the past, Bush has had enough sense to confront Sharon when he took a position that was blatantly wrong. Now, however, he’s applauding the work of a man many Jews even dislike so that he can swing a few votes in November’s election.

Supporting Israel is a big issue with Jews in the United States. According to Nathan Diament, a lobbyist for the Orthodox Jewish movement, Jews in the United States have an 80 percent turnout rate. Their support could mean a lot in swing states such as Ohio, Pennsylvania or the infamous Florida.

Republicans in Washington would have us believe that the administration’s move to support Sharon is a policy decision, but the obvious political maneuvering and benefits involved show that Bush is merely trying to secure his re-election.

A president who talks so much of standing on principles should be more willing to stick to his previous position than change his opinion to gain votes. Maybe Bush should try to win votes by being honest and moral instead of scheming and advantageous.
 
 
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