A Lebanese-born lawmaker in Australia has attacked the Jewish lobby in that nation as “cancerous” and “malicious.”
Speaking during a debate on religious tolerance and multiculturalism in the New South Wales parliament in Sydney on May 23, Labor councilor Shaoquett Moselmane also told the Israeli ambassador to Australia, to “butt out and stay out” of the debate.
“Your perceived right to bully as you do in the Middle East does not extend to the Australian political arena,” said Moselmane.
“I accept the right of people to express their views, even when they are wrong, naive, ill informed, indoctrinated and blinded by the power of a political lobby group that is cancerous, malicious and seeks to deny, misinform and scaremonger,” he added.
Referring to the a report in The Australian newspaper – which he called the “Australian Israeli media” – he accused the publication of “denying the truth of Israel’s occupation of Palestinian land and the killing and dehumanising of the Palestinian people.”
.Last month, Moselmane told parliament that the state of Israel is “a corruption of justice.”
This is the second time that the Jewish lobby has been identified as a factor in Australia in that nation’s parliament. In 2002, Federal Labor MP Julia Irwin charged “the Jewish lobby” with being responsible for a “code of silence” forbidding parliamentary debate on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, and quoted an email from an unnamed “senior media commentator” warning her: “You have taken on the most implacable, arrogant, cruel and powerful lobby in the country”, and advising that she would be “singled out for vilification and, if possible, political destruction.”
Asked why the commentator she quoted was anonymous, Irwin told theAustralian Jewish News she had promised not to reveal the name because the commentator had “felt the full force of the Jewish lobby’s fury a long time ago and had gone through hell”.
“Anyone speaking or writing publicly on the Middle East can expect to be subjected to personal attacks and to have assumptions made about their reasons for raising the issue,” she said.
Irwin said she had received “hundreds of messages”, mostly supportive, following the extensive media coverage of a motion she proposed which condemned Israel’s actions in the West Bank and Gaza Strip.