Pollies speak up for Israel

Mark Dreyfus speaking in Parliament.

SHADOW attorney-general Mark Dreyfus said that whatever the grievances of the Palestinians, “indiscriminate murder will never be a legitimate form of political protest” when he spoke in Parliament last week.

“It is terrorism, and it is abhorrent,” he said.

Stating that the recent violence in Israel reinforces the need for a lasting resolution of the conflict based on the right of Israel to live in peace in secure borders, and on the realisation of the right of the Palestinian people to also live in peace and security within their own state, he added, “It is imperative that the Palestinian Authority, Hamas and other Palestinian factions cease all public statements and incitement by their officials and in their media that promote political violence or that are otherwise inimical to the achievement of a peaceful, two-state resolution of the conflict.”

Noting the 20th anniversary of the assassination of Yitzhak Rabin next week, Dreyfus said, “The best way the world can honour Mr Rabin is to push ahead with the work he began. For Australia’s part, we will continue to give our full support to the peace process. Our support for Israel’s right to exist in security and safety will remain a guiding principle of our policy.”

Federal Member for Melbourne Ports Michael Danby echoed Dreyfus’s thoughts when he spoke in Parliament on Thursday and said that the “lone wolf stabbing attacks” are fuelled “by the deliberate incitement of Palestinian leaders such as Mahmoud Abbas”.

Danby noted that allegations that Israel is trying to change the status quo on the Temple Mount are falsehoods, adding that Abbas claimed Jews “have no right to desecrate the mosque with their dirty feet” and that instead of trying to calm tensions, he said that “every drop of blood spilled in Jerusalem is pure, every martyr will reach paradise, and every injured person will be rewarded by God”.

Attacking both media coverage of the violence and Fremantle MP Melissa Parke, who has been highly critical of Israel, Danby asked, “In what kind of moral universe is it legitimate, understandable or okay to knife and stab innocent civilians, run them over with cars or shoot them in bus stations? It is not okay in Israel. It is not okay here in Australia.

“In what moral universe should we say that the media should pay more attention to the people with knives in their hands than the people with knives in their chests?”

JOSHUA LEVI