Part of the chaos occurring with democratic upheavals across the region is a
result of misunderstandings, since people confuse elections for democracy,
President Shimon Peres on Thursday.
“But elections are just
Democracy starts the day after elections and includes
underlying values and substance,” Peres added in comments at a conference at the
Interdisciplinary Center Herzliya on the future of the state comptroller
“The basic foundations of a democratic administration
are harmed when a non-democratic party is elected though a democratic process,”
Next, the president discussed the complaint that today there
are no “big leaders,” and how it is hard to become a “big leader” in an age
where everything is less dependent on any one individual.
other important trends, such as the just announced major cuts in the defense
sector, Peres said, “Before we needed a big army, but now we need to redefine
what is ‘force.’” In an age of “nuclear bombs that are so strong that you can’t
use it [along with other unconventional and cyber weapons], why does it matter
how many bombs you have” and how big an army you have, he added.
said that the even after spending trillions of dollars on fighting terrorism,
the United States couldn’t end it.
“Globalization is not a question, it’s
a reality. Science is globalization and there is nothing anyone can do to stop
it. We can’t fight over borders, as there are no borders,” he said.
“negative things also come from science. Science by itself” has no conscience
about whether it is used for positive uses “or to make bombs,” he
Returning to the topic of the conference, Peres said the role of
the state comptroller is to protect the minority.
“The government only
guards the need of the majority,” he said. “The comptroller guards each and
every individual citizen’s rights.”
Peres said very strongly that there
must be “no compromise” in terms of corruption in the government.
congratulated Joseph Shapira, the state comptroller and ombudsman, on his
ability to strike a balance between fighting corruption while paying attention
to the right of every individual who needs attention to get it.Greer Fay
Cashman contributed to this report.