A friend to Israel – “Australia is under new management & open for business “

…….A triumphant Mr Abbott declared Australia “under new management and open for business” in his victory speech on Saturday night, pledging to create a competent, trustworthy government.

Tony Abbott was gracious in victory.  The man who was labelled  a few years ago as ‘unelectable’ was elected.

I wish I could say the same about ‘dear Kev’. He rambled on and on. Was it only me who saw the looks on the face of his wife, which clearly were saying  “Shut up! Be quiet! Enough already”?

Egotistical to the end! He sounded as if he’d won, even though it was worst ALP vote since Federation.

The ALP looks set to be reduced to one seat only in two states, something that has never happened before in even one, and looks likely to narrowly avoid the same in a third state.

 The important thing to us, as well of course  as what happens on the ‘home front’, is Tony Abbott’s and the Liberal Party’s stand on Israel. He is well and truly on record as being a firm supporter.

 Here are a few highlights to questions posed to Tony Abbott by AIJAC – Australia Israel Jewish Affairs Council, in regards to Israel prior to the election .  Please visit the site to read it in its entirety. I have posted only three of ten questions.

“In keeping with a long-standing pre-election tradition at the AIR, we sent a series of ten policy questions to the campaigns of both Prime Minister Kevin Rudd and Opposition Leader Tony Abbott to help inform our readers as they go to the polls on Sept. 7.

The questions – designed to focus on political issues of special concern to the Australian Jewish community – deal with issues including Israel and the peace process, communal education, counter-terrorism and communal security, the Iranian nuclear crisis, multiculturalism, racial hatred laws and the vexed question of asylum seeker policy.

The answers from both campaigns are presented here in full


Australia’s relationship with Israel

Australia’s relationship with Israel is important. The Coalition’s traditionally strong support for Australia’s Jewish community has been matched by firm commitment to Israel’s security. That reflects our two countries’ shared democratic values and the Coalition’s recognition that Israel is under existential threat in a way that almost no other country in the world is. The Coalition also believes there is scope for closer trade and investment ties with Israel.

The Coalition would not, as has Labor, nominate an anti-Israel campaigner for election to the International Court of Justice. And it would ensure that Australian taxpayers’ money doesn’t find its way to Gaza Strip terrorist organisations, as emerged last year.

Israel has no stauncher friend than the Liberal-National Coalition and as Greg Sheridan has written, it is “crystal clear” that the Coalition has a deeper level of support for the Israel relationship than Labor (Greg Sheridan, “Badly misjudged action will have a political cost”, The Australian, 25 May 2010).

The Coalition is firmly committed to restoring the Australia-Israel friendship to the strength it enjoyed under the Howard Government.


What part should Australia play in the quest for peace between Israel and its neighbours? And what principles should underlie Australia’s decisions with regard to voting on Israeli-Palestinian issues at the United Nations?

Israel’s long-term security requires efforts to achieve a two-state peace settlement involving accommodation of the legitimate aspirations of the Palestinian people and their unconditional and unambiguous acceptance of Israel’s right to exist behind secure borders. A Coalition government would be glad to assist if it could play a useful role in advancing that prospect.

The Coalition believes the Australian Government should have made support of Palestinian observer status at the UN conditional on the Palestinians’ unconditional and unambiguous acceptance of Israel’s right to exist behind secure borders.

In deciding not to support Israel, the United States and Canada at the United Nations over Palestinian observer status, Labor decided that Australia would turn its back on a long-standing friend.

The Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) campaign against Israel continues to be active in Australia, where Jewish businesses have been targeted for their claimed support of Israel. How should the Australian Government respond to BDS? Should organisations that engage in BDS receive government funding?

The Coalition is deeply concerned by the Boycott, Divestments and Sanctions campaign against Israel. This campaign has been backed by the Greens and is designed to destroy any business that has a connection with Israel.

It was disappointing that Labor joined with the Greens in not supporting Liberal Senator Arthur Sinodinos’s September 2012 Senate motion condemning the BDS campaign.

The Coalition will institute a policy across Government that ensures no grants of taxpayers’ funds are provided to individuals or organisations which actively support the BDS campaign.

Arthur Sinodinos

Senate Motion.

At the time of proposing the motion Liberal Senator Arthur Sinodinos was the Shadow Parliamentary Secretary to the Leader of the Opposition, Tony Abbott.

 Mr President I give notice that on the next day of sitting, I shall move—That the Senate-

(a) Notes that:

(i) Senator Lee Rhiannon has acknowledged that some votes shifted away from the Greens in Marrickville, in the NSW local government elections, because of the boycott of Israel issue;

(ii) Marrickville Greens councillor Ms Marika Kontellis last year voted to retain Council’s BDS (Boycott, Divestments and Sanctions) policy and last month attended the Byron Bay BDS conference;

(iii) the NSW Greens chose Karel Solomon, a BDS advocate who has branded Israel an apartheid state, as a candidate for Marrickville Council;

(iv) Irene Doutney, the Greens’ candidate for Sydney Lord Mayor, has supported BDS actions and said she personally favours a full boycott of Israel;

(b) Calls on the NSW Greens to explicitly reject the BDS policy; and 

(c) Condemns the BDS campaign.

If we want to engage nation states, to promote cooperation and peace on issues like the Middle East, the best approach is to work with them rather than isolate them and make them appear the villains that they are not.

Labor’s capitulation to the Greens on this important issue is indeed troubling.

No amount of justification after the event by Foreign Minister, Senator Bob Carr can expunge what Labor has put on the record.

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  1. Adam Bandt, (so far) the only ‘Green’ to be elected has publicly supported the BDS and has been quoted as wondering why the other members of the party do not do so openly. (My implication being that they do so in private).

    IMHO any person – esp Jew – who voted for them should go live in Syria, Egypt or Saudi Arabia – or any one of the other wonderful Middle E astern countries that none of them boycott. Frankly, I would happily contribute to sending Bandt and his Band to those countries on condition that they promised to stay for at least one consecutive year.

  2. Susan Parsons

    Last night’s election was a ‘beautiful set of numbers’ to quote Paul Keating.

    I couldn’t watch Rudd’s concession speech – he acted as if he had won and the ALPBC coverage was disgusting!
    Should have guessed it would be so.

  3. I felt sick the pit of my stomach listening to Rudd. His wife’s face said it all though.

    Adam Bandt is the only Green elected in the Lower House. Thank G-d.
    The Tally Room says “the Greens will win seats in more states than 2007, although not as many as 2010” in the Upper House. As it stands they will probably have 10.

    What breaks me up is the fact that parties like the Australian Sports Party and the Australian Motoring Enthusiasts Party get a seat.

    This is interesting, though what a shame poor old Carr didn’t get booted out. Still at least he won’t be showing his face round the UN anymore.


    • Susan Parsons

      Something needs to be done about voting for the Senate.

      Disgraceful outcome.

      And Clive Palmer has a lot to answer for as well – he helped Labor in Queensland.
      Still,,it’s a start: no more Rudd.

      Let’s see if Shorten takes over. More likely Albanese I think.

      • If you read about the Senate, it says everywhere it’s the best system in the world? Go Figure

        Here are a few of the 50 or so parties Voluntary Euthanasia Party,No Carbon Tax Climate Sceptics party, Shooters Party,Sex Party,Fishing Party
        No Carbon Tax Climate Sceptics party

        One Nation

        Australian Fishing and Lifestyle Party.

      • Could be Tanya Plibersek

        • Susan Parsons

          Not even “no”, Shirlee! HELL no to Plibersek! She wasn’t even loyal to the red witch!

          • Her name has been bandied around today. Seems it will be between Shorten and Albanese. Preferably the former.
            Albanese only opposed the Marrickville Council BDS action becasue it was beneficial to his wife election.

      • I heard on ABC 24 earlier, that both sides of politics agree there has to be a change in the system of electing the Upper House and they will see to it during this term of office.

        • Susan Parsons

          Good about the election laws, Shirlee. I don’t even want compulsory voting as I believe it is undemocratic. The downside of that is we will get US-style elections which isn’t good either, so I don’t really know the answer.

          I remarked at my polling booth that we needed ID cards, and votes should be made in pen, not pencil. The young man on the desk said many people had made this comment.
          And you can cast your vote anywhere in Australia – must be some voter fraud going on somewhere.

          Apparently the only states Obama didn’t win last time were the ones with voter ID laws. Says a lot to me!

          Not sure if I even like preferential voting….one year the Nazi party were on the senate ticket and it was back when you had to fill in all the numbers unlike now. I was unimpressed to say the least!

  4. The party is over. So now the hangover begins. Or so it will seem to a large number of people who did not want Abbott as their Prime Minister. The last few years has seen many blogs and media outlets rubbishing the Rudd/Gillard/Rudd governments, with such fowl and venomous tones unheard of in Australian politics before now. I won’t name those I blame for dragging our political scene down into the gutter, but those of you, who follow our politics and aren’t firmly rusted onto one side or the other, will know who they are.
    But now that we have a fresh government, let’s hope our politicians and media will act in the manner most Australians expect them to. Many of them need to clean up their act. We have a great country, and we don’t need regression by those selfish agenda driven ratbags.
    Those who enjoyed the party last night will probably have a hangover for different reasons. They see a great future for Australia under an Abbott led government. Here’s hoping they’re right.
    Every cloud has that silver lining, and I guess one of them has been the amount of material our political scene has provided for political cartoonists. Fantastic !! Australia has some outstanding published cartoonists and many have produced brilliant work over this period.
    My work, mostly unpublished, can be seen here by clicking on this link. http://cartoonmick.wordpress.com/editorial-political/

    • Susan Parsons

      Agree, and let’ hope adults are now going to set the tone.

    • Mick, I think the Rudd/Gillard/Rudd governments brought themselves into disrepute with their awful behaviour. They all maligned Abbott, accusing him of being misogynist and homophobic, while the media trumped up charges that he attacked a woman while at uni.
      But the public weren’t fooled and the results yesterday showed that they trusted Tony and not Kev.

      • I’d like to pleasantly add to your reply here if you don’t mind please, Pam.

        Looking at the behaviour of both Labor and the coalition over the last 3 years, the words “awful behaviour” is fully applicable to both sides (plus many elements of the Australian media).

        This can be seen by anyone with an open mind. Sure, if anyone champions one side over the other, they become blinded by the rust and can not see any bad in the party they support.

        You can observe this in the staunch Labor supporters just as much as you can in the staunch Liberal supporters. It’s a shame, but it’s just human nature with some people when they let their dedication blind them from reality.

        In my humble opinion, and yes, I could be wrong, yesterdays election was not decided by political ability of either main party, but by the brilliant election campaign run by the Libs. It was much better than the Labor’s efforts.

        Both campaigns were full of misleading elements, lies and deceit from both sides, but Libs did a better job of it ( with a bit of help from the media). Facts always get in the road of a good story.

        I’m sure I’ll be told ‘I’m wrong about all that, but that’s the problem with having an open and unbiased mind.

        No hard feelings please, Pam, all just my humble opinion.



      • Mike I see you as wrong.

        The ALP did all the promising and we all know how they lie. That’s a well proven fact.
        Remember “There will be no carbon tax under the government I lead”?

        From where I sit I don’t see any lies in the Liberal campaign and listening today about what people think of Abbott, I don’t think he will deliberately not do something he says he will do.
        It will take time. It’s going to take a good deal of time and effort to get us back into the black.

        He hasn’t promised that much. Stop the boats. Remove the Carbon Tax. Then here is this stupid paid maternity leave which will make young married women unemployable. No employer will employ a young married woman if he has to pay for her to have time off to have a baby. It’s too expensive.

    • Your cartoons are terrific Mick. If They can be used here at all please let me know. The address is in Contact Us

      • Mike, I’m quite happy to be challenged, but I can’t see how the Lib’s behaviour has been awful, whereas the Labour lot have blatantly lied and tried to discredit Abbott. Many of Labour’s supporters have been disgraceful in their denigration of Abbott, yet haven’t been called to account. I remember Julian Burnside saying “pedos in speedos” about Abbott. To suggest, on zero evidence, that he was a paedophile was reprehensible, yet none on the progressive side shunned him for it, or even criticized him. This is one example of the disgusting behaviour I’m talking about – which you just don’t see among Liberal supporters.

        The advantage of this site is that we can have honest discussions, so feel free to disagree.

  5. The trouble is that “the Palestinian people’s” aspirations are ILLegitimate: namely, the lust for Israel’s demise and the rejection of the Jewish people’s inalienable human and political rights. The Coalition should acknowledge this obvious reality and should stop treading on eggshells.

  6. Susan Parsons

    Kudos to Tony Abbott and his team for pulling this off after all the vile remarks made about him the likes of which I have never seen in Oz politics before.

    (Even Keating’s insults to Hewson were funny – ‘a feral abacus’).

    I also think a lot of thanks are due to Andrew Bolt, Alan Jones, Larry Pickering and Michael Smith who did an outstanding job of exposing the lies and deceit. And also the IPA.

  7. Well, so long as Abbott sees Israel as “goodies” so far perhaps some interesting policy about Israel will come about.

  8. It was a great result last night; Tony came across as dignified and with the gravitas of a true leader. Kev was embarrassing with his concession speech, and went on far too long.

    The candidates for who should lead Labour are an unedifying lot. Plibersek and Albanese are pro-Palestinian, which makes them supporters of totalitarianism – not good for the leader of the opposition in a democracy. Shorten has been disloyal and is too involved with the unions.

  9. Susan Parsons

    The US blogs are picking up on the Abbott win! Excellent!

    Front Page of The Drudge Report, Breitbart and Weselzippers…..and my friend AD1389 who I emailed as soon as I found out last night.


    • It’s been coming out of Israel and the UK too

      • I forgot to mention James Delingpole and Gateway Pundit. I notice Mr Harper and Mr Cameron have congratulated Mr Abbott. So far no word from Obama. Glad it is in the Israeli papers 🙂

  10. I also don’t like compulsory voting. I’ve worked on on pre-poll booths and polling day booths to know that it has to be. I’ve had conversations with many people who say they are only voting because they have to and don’t want to be fined.

    The problem is that the ALP would never get rid of either. It’s because of their voters both were initiate to start with.

    ALP supporters, your average working class person wouldn’t vote. I am not being snobby but it’s a proven fact

    The other point is, I believe, that more people support the Right than the left, so theoretically Labour would never be elected

  11. Hi Shirley!
    What a brilliant article, I couldn’t agree more! I voted for Abott and am thrilled he is our PM 🙂 first and foremost, for his continuously staunch support for Israel. I know for a fact that amongst many of my friends and colleagues, they are devastated that the Liberals are in government but regardless, it is time Australia has a leader who understands Israel’s situation and is willing to stand by them without appeasement (oh how I despise that word!!) Particularly now that we are on the UN Security Council, it is most timely!!
    Also, I love this new blog, its fantastic!! Kudos to your good work!! (and Pam too!)
    Elisa xx

    • Welcome Elise. Thank you for your kind words and please don’t be a stranger

      Don’t be surprised that your friends and colleagues aren’t happy about the Libs being in government. You are after all in Melbourne, the home of the ‘loony left’

      Maybe we can get you to write about Israel from a non-Jewish perspective, that would be very interesting. You’ve seen the side of Israel that most of us don’t see.

    • Elisa, I cannot understand why some of your friends and colleagues are “devastated that the Liberals are in government” since I’m sure that they care about Australia’s wellbeing and must have witnessed the shambles that the ALP made of their opportunities in government.
      Also, they probably recall the great job that the Howard governments did.
      I guess that some people are just rusted on to a particular party for one reason or another.

      • She is in Melbourne, that’s why. The left rule there. They don’t see that the ALP did a bad job and most certainly wouldn’t find anything at all right in what Howard did.

    • Hi Elisa, great to hear from you again. I agree with you about Abbott’s staunch support for Israel, which shows he prefers democracies to totalitarian regimes. Rudd, on the other hand, was ambiguous at best, and if Albanese becomes Labour leader, we will have a staunch supporter of Palestinian totalitarianism as opposition leader.

      Are you back in Melbourne? If so, do come along to our next AIFA meeting on Sunday 22nd.

  12. Save the myriad of specific interest groups ( ethnic/religious, cultural/hedonistic, culinary/environmental, manic/ideological etc. ) our mass production Aussie electorate prefers not to bother thinking profoundly about the blokes they put in those two houses.

    Kev 007 was hailed as the bloke better,smarter and more appealing than Howard, who was disposed of like an old putrid thong in favour of an ex ABC personality, who was dropped unceremoniously to be replaced by a ball boy of politics who is best known by two initials, “JA”.

    Gillard enhanced our image as the first “lady” to lead the country, while nobody knew in which direction she was going on any morning. Julia was, then, thrashed about like any top Aussie bloke, hitting him with all kinda taxes, wasteful family purse shopping sprees for ceiling bats and other paraphernalia.

    How Tony will be treated from now on by the media no one knows. That circus of inebriated rhetoric they call the Lower House will get even lower.

    Would I change it for anything else in the world ? I am writing from the heart of leafy, autumn warm Bucharest. Very soon I shall embrace our sandy shores again.

  13. Otto, I think you underestimate Aussie voters. I believe they had the intelligence to see through Labour’s lies and demonisation of Toby Abbott and saw him as much more honest than either Julia or Kev. What I found particularly revolting was how they even denigrated him for his voluntary work, something that many Aussies are involved in, and like me, would have felt affronted to see a person attacked for wanting to help his fellow Australians.

    Abbott’s acceptance speech revealed a thoughtful and quite humble person who is dedicated to public service. Rudd, on the other hand, showed himself as a shallow egotistical person.

  14. Carr will no doubt be appointed professor of Peace and Conflict Resolution Studies at The University of Sydney. From that august eminence will go forth the Word that “the Zionists are to blame for the downfall of the party of the little battler.”

  15. Pam
    I suggest you should try underestimating the politicians as well. To mine, nothing they produce for public consumption contains any genuine emotional ingredients. I cannot name one Australian politician that would inspire me. Intellectual reliance left through the front door, with dignity, in the person of John Howard.

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