full-page-JN_5-feb_FA_sold-out1Members of the Australian Jewish Democratic Society (AJDS) are dismayed that the United Israel Appeal (UIA) has brought a series of ill-considered speakers to Australia to support their 2015 fundraising campaign. Amongst these speakers are people who consistently voice Islamophobic and racist sentiments; who oppose the end of the Occupation; and who actively call for military solutions to political problems, which could result in more bloodshed.
We are concerned that such speakers add nothing productive to conversations in our community and in our society more generally. On the contrary, the hate speech that some of them offer actively works against creating an Israel/Palestine which is just and peaceful. There are many speakers – Israeli and Palestinian – who could speak to us and inspire us with ideas for a vastly different future for Israel/Palestine. It is disappointing that the UIA was unable to provide these much needed voices for Australian Jews to listen to.
The Jewish communities in Australia should be united at this point in time in condemning Islamophobia and any speakers who would support it. Just as we call on other communities to condemn antisemitism, so too should we condemn racism, wherever it may appear.
This official AJDS statement was issued 3/3/15