Tuesday, January 17, 2006

Election Observers for Palestinian Elections Threatened

This is the first I had heard that the election observers in Palestine for the January 25th elections have been threatened, and told to leave the country. The article seems to indicate that this is a fairly common thing, and that the National Democratic Institute, who monitors elections worldwide, has assessed the threat and is comfortable monitoring the elections, feeling they are not putting their people in harms way.

What is to be gained from these threats? Perhaps the PA recognizes that Hamas is going to take the election, and hopes to use their present position in government to steal the election. But with Abbas indicating that he is ready to step down and the party in disarray verging on all-out chaos, that seems unlikely. Maybe a faction group then, or certain particular politicians, who believe they can grab hold of some of the power that’s up for grabs?

Or maybe what is to be gained is the respect of the Palestinian people. Perhaps they feel that they do not need the West to watch over them like they are school children, incapable of holding a fair election. Perhaps the Palestinian people are pushing the moderators out because this is a big moment for the Palestinian people, the moment where they are claiming a national identity, and having the West overseeing it somehow lessens that moment.

Posted by Scottage at 11:01 PM / | |