Maurice Solovitz
Tolerance can't be measured in degrees of Intolerance

Israel must have a new political system

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Fascism isn’t just a disease of the 20th century. Fascism is a disease of the 21st century too. And it has overtaken many nations in some way or form. It threatens Israel because Israel’s political system encourages instability and instability is Fascism’s most helpful ally.

Fascism is the entrenchment of a radical ideology within society to the exclusion of everything else. Communism and Nazism are simply more extreme manifestations of the same. But more about fascism later.

For too many decades now, apologists for Israel’s proportional representation system have earnestly declared that its system of governance provided the purest form of democratic expression in global society.


What it represented and what it represents today was and is political governance by special interest groups. Top-down, it ‘feathers the nest’ of its loyal constituents first. Its trickle-down economics applies wholly corrupt considerations of who will create the most damage if not appeased. And it tries to ignore the rest.

All political systems depend on engaging with a chosen cadre that rules and maintains that rule with a minimum amount of friction. Why? Because that friction destabilises and ultimately leads to those in power being replaced, or ‘worse,’ their system being overthrown.

The difference between fascism and democracy is two-fold: empowerment, and presentation. The wider the perception of opportunity (which is in itself, a form of empowerment) the greater the political satisfaction. And it is how we perceive our situation that determines our outlook on everything; job, social interaction, recreation, and life itself.  Fascism depends on the disempowerment of its ‘enemies.’ Anyone not a fan of the supporting narrative is an enemy.

Fascism depends on the targeting of specific groups as a means of subverting the values and principles of society. It relies on intimidation and marginalisation as a means of removing unwanted interference, creating a regimented, singular, and unopposed narrative. It eliminates free speech and free association. Its modern guise is to create a selective and hierarchical, intersectional pyramid of sanctioned prejudice; a selective call for “safe spaces” and “no-platforming” but in reality, it is hate dressed in prejudices finery.

By controlling information, it exercises power over what we think.

In 1950’s America it was radical right-Wing McCarthyism demonising the Left and for the last two decades it has been the fascist Left and their Islamic allies constructing a narrative of Palestinian victimhood that absolves the Arab world of any responsibility in the plight of the new-(Arab) Palestinians. It is the cause that replaces apartheid South Africa and everyone must support it. The Palestinians are the vehicle through which Jews are, and Judaism is assaulted as a means of replacing us within the Western World. In some respects, McCarthy was right about the Fascist Left. His methods may have been crude, but Jews now have to contend with the same prejudice, threat of violence and distancing (as if infected). The Fascist Left learnt its lessons well.

It will come as no surprise that Israeli society was too focussed on winning a century long war against an existential enemy to pay much attention to global intellectual and political developments. And then technical prowess and economic success led to overwhelming complacency and contempt for undercurrents that should have been understood for the devastating threats they contained.

Which returns us to Israel and its dysfunctional political system. Israel has a unicameral (single chamber) proportional representation system. It has never worked because the nature of Israeli society means that too many parties create a block to stable government. No one party can exercise control. Back-room deals safeguard corrupt practices as the rule rather than the exception. This cumulatively damages public confidence in the legal system. In the 20th Century, fascism exploited the collapse of legal authority to rule over an alienated society.  How is the 21st Century any different?

In spite of Israel being a geographically tiny country with a small population, Israel needs a bicameral (two chamber)* system of government that allows its diverse peoples to be represented legislatively through an * upper and a lower house, providing a voice to fundamentally opposing ideologies while preserving the peace.

Representative democracy occurs where individuals are elected to parliament in direct constituency elections. Constituent boundaries defined by population size, rather than by geographical area elect representatives who stand for parliament as members of a political party. An Independent, wishing to stand for office would have to create a political party and, in all cases, in order to be legally constituted as  a political party, a full platform of beliefs and policies presented in published form and accepted by the state electoral commission as valid.  It would discourage mavericks from fragmenting the vote and encourage people to integrate their special interests into the major parties.

Where I would also differ from the various existing models is that each voters’ single choice for a representative in the Knesset (the Lower House of Parliament) would require greater than 50% of the constituency vote, which may therefore require more than one round of voting in parliamentary elections. Once the first round of voting had been tallied, the votes of the parties’ gaining seats in the Knesset would be eliminated from the total vote tally leaving the remaining votes, those not represented in the Lower House, to be proportionally allocated seats in the Upper House.

That Upper House could not propose or vote upon matters pertaining to Budgets, Foreign Affairs or Defence. It could reject or send back, with amendments, any other bill passed by the lower house twice before being over-ruled by the lower house. And It could propose and table bills for consideration in the Lower House.

Responsible government should then mean that only legislation that is fair and benefits all members of society equally would be considered. Ideal? Realistic? An Upper House, to retain relevance would have to demonstrate credible alternatives to what is presented in the Lower House.

The dichotomy of Left and Right is a failure of vision in a world of fear, anger and confusion.  Israel needs an alternative. It needs a realignment of forces to politically represent a fusion of what is traditionally referred to as “left wing” and “right wing.”  In a world that approaches 80% middle class it is probable that most people are “liberal” on some issues and “conservative” on others.  In Israel the Left is too closely associated with failed elites and a European anti-Jewish model that has embraced Islamism.

WB Yeats wrote:

Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold.

Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world,

The blood-dimmed tide is loosed, and everywhere

The ceremony of innocence is drowned.

The best lack all conviction, while the worst

Are full of passionate intensity.

(The Second Coming, published 1920)

Does this not sound like Israeli politics at its worst, today?

Democracy is often fractious. It  is  also the least-worst option as a system of government. The daily demonstrations in Israel prior to 10/7 may or may not have been a rejection of the results of the 25th Knesset elections (the 37th government). What they certainly were, was an expression of the fear of marginalization that the adoption of an extremist coalition government represented.

Israel’s own dalliance with fascism is not just as some would excuse it, an attempt by Benjamin Netanyahu to cling to personal power. A longstanding reluctance to tackle violence undermines society and encourages those at the fringes of society to express themselves, increasingly, openly, and with violence of word and deed, against anyone with whom they disagree.

Today may be the nightmarish void at the genesis of creation. Surrounded by malevolent forces, the future is uncertain. What is known is that we must not allow our past and our present situation to become our future too.

For a reset to take place the political structure must be reformed and only then will it be possible to challenge the ills within Israeli society.  Only then will we be able to challenge the global narrative of denial that is rewriting our past to exclude us from the future.

About the Author
Maurice Solovitz is an Aussie, Israeli, British Zionist. He blogs at and previously at
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