Israel in EU & NATO?

Discussion in 'Current Affairs, News and Analysis' started by Pork_Pie, Jan 2, 2007.

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  1. Telegraph Link

    Something I've thought about for some time. NATO security guarantees could make Israel feel less worried, EU human rights standards would help to improve the treatment of minorities.

    Long way off yet, with many obstacles to cross, but an interesting idea nevertheless.
     
  2. Bouillabaisse

    Bouillabaisse LE Book Reviewer

    Who cares if they feel less worried? What benefit to us if they join either organisation? Not much, I expect
     
  3. just another 'war' to get involved in and another tour to add to all the others the lads are doing when things go pear shaped...
     
  4. Better inside the tent pi*sing out than outside the tent pi*sing in? :wink:
     
  5. Im not sure whether they would be an asset or a liability in NATO. They would certainly have to change their ways, I think.

    As regards them joining the EU, many of them chose to cease being Europeans. By choice and, so they say, destiny, they are in Asia Minor and long may they stay there. Entry to The Eurovision Song Contest is hardly a precedent or qualification for them!
     
  6. No thanks!
     
  7. Bouillabaisse

    Bouillabaisse LE Book Reviewer

    How come no one ever looks at the "inside the tent, p*ssing in it" option?
     
  8. If Israel truely wishes to join the EU and NATO clubs, then it will have to change quite dramatically its mentality and methods. I suspect that it is not ready to do either of those. Thinking that you're a liberal western democracy is not the same as being a liberal western democracy.
     
  9. in_the_cheapseats

    in_the_cheapseats LE Moderator

    The same could be said for Turkey but they have been allowed to get half way there. I don't class Turkey as particularly liberal western democracy in outlook. Israel is probably more so.

    The difference is that Israel is the buffer between Europe and more militant religous states and so is more opinionated in some matters than we are, simply because of circumstance.
     
  10. Israel is an Asian country, not a European one, so there’s no place for them in the European Union. Special trading arrangements between them and the EU is a possibility, but not membership. Another reason why Israel would be ineligible for EU membership is that they have capital punishment on their statute books. Granted, it has only ever been applied once, against Adolf Eichmann in 1962, but it’s still available under Israeli law. They would have to abolish it if they wanted to join the EU.

    Furthermore, membership would mean that citizens of other EU countries would have the right to live and work in Israel (though how many would want to is a different matter). As the self proclaimed Jewish state, they wouldn’t be too pleased with an influx of non-Jewish incomers. They’re already worried about their “demographic time bomb” where the Israeli Arab population is growing faster than the Jewish one. European Jews can already go there by right, but they’d throw a track if they had to accept Muslims from the UK and France, not to mention Christians, Hindus, Buddhists, Atheists, Zoroastrians .....

    As for joining NATO, Avigdor Lieberman’s agenda is obvious:

    “The war we are waging in the Middle East is not a war of the state of Israel alone, it is a war of the entire free world, and we are situated on the front lines.”

    In other words, he wants to get NATO involved in the mess that started in 1897. The UK was sensible enough to bug out in 1948, and the only time this country and France got militarily involved with them since was hardly a resounding success. He must be on drugs if he thinks any European country would want to get sucked into it again.
     
  11. NATO is now a creaking anti-Russian alliance, the members are legally commited to defend each other. It is not a cosy club.

    The expansion of NATO in the Eastern block is already highly questionable from a strategic point of view. Europeans are increasingly dependant on the Kremlin for their energy resources and in reality have very little latitude for action if a minor ex-Soviet vassal state requires real military aide.

    Israel has been strategic impediment to DC since the early 70s. I can't recall a single incident where Israel provided anything but peripheral aid to the US in its millitary ventures. If it wasn't for the lucrative indirect US state subsidy to the American arms corporations that Israel provides an excuse for I'd find the relationship bizarre.

    I can see no practical value to the other members in admiting a country as impetuously prone to badly planned invasions as Israel to NATO. Even the US which is currently emotionally commited to the defence of Israel has very deliberately not entered into a formal alliance with it. Like the sentimental Yanks our major strategic interests happen to lie under the sands of Israels sworn enemies.

    From an Israeli point of view it could find its natural military adventurism and cavalier attitude to human rights severly constrained by a deep alliance with EU powers whose populations if not actively hostile to it have almost no will to actually defend it.

    Avigdor Lieberman is a delusional wingnut if he thinks Israel can afford to turn its back on the neighbors and look to Europe. He may find any thought of intercourse with racial inferiors deeply distasteful but a tiny country wedged in the great Arab mass of the ME does not have the luxury of choice.
     
  12. I think Israel has applied Capital punishment a few more times than once.
     
  13. I'm happy to be corrected on that point.
     
  14. non, non, non.
     
  15. Personally, I wonder if a 'less worried' Israel is a good thing. Whenever Israel has been most confident of its military position re. its neighbours it has arguably spelled m ore trouble rather than less. Wouldn't a less cocky Israel be more likely to be amenable to the Palestinians and thus have a calming effect on other Arabs?

    If Israel were to join NATO then there's surely a theoretical case for Lebanon, Syria and Jordan should too (...not that I'm in favour of either!). It could (conceivably....?!) be like taking in Turkey AND Greece in 1952: neither bolstered enough by solo membership to be too cocky to the other (1974 a possible flaw in this argument I know) and held apart by friends they like/need more than each other to stop them scrapping.