What on earth does the ECAJ think it’s doing?

I, along with many others wish we had the answer to that.  I have been told it is likely due to the political leaning of the new President?

For non-Australians and non-Jews, the ECAJ is the Executive Council of Australian Jewry.

According to its website it is…

– the officially elected representative organisation and the voice of the Australian Jewish Community.

With this in mind, perhaps they should ask the Community what it wants. That is of course if they can tell the Community who and what they are first, as most people I encounter have never heard of them.

To my surprise on Thu, 23 Jan 2014,  some ten days ago, I received the following email from them

Subject: Humanitarian crisis in Syria

“If anyone wants to donate to help Syrian refugees,the Arab Council of Australia recommends the Red Cross Syrian Crisis Appeal”

Hello? Has someone lost it? I could not believe what I was reading.

At first I thought it was a joke, but then knowing from whom it came, I strongly doubted it was one.

I answered with some kind of comment like

“You are of course joking?”

Joking is putting it mildly knowing what the Syrians think of Israel, and like Iran, and the rest of the region,  they would happily blast us into oblivion.

Israel is a humanitarian country and has been treating injured Syrians in Her hospitals. After treatment they have to be secretly smuggled back to Syria for fear of retribution.

In early November a Syrian baby was born in Israel. By all accounts the mother wanted no paperwork regarding the birth of her child, as it was too dangerous. Both her and her baby would likely be killed if it was known the baby was born in Israel.

IDF evacuates 20-year-old mother to Ziv Medical Center in Safed. First Syrian refugee baby born in Israeli hospital. Photo: Hannah Bickel

This is what they think of us and yet the ECAJ asks us donate money to them?

Within a very short space of time of receiving this, emails started arriving from others asking if I’d received the email and was the ECAJ playing some kind of a joke?

The ECAJ, supposedly our peak body sending out monetary appeals  from the Arab Council of Australia?

Don’t they have enough?

The Arab world has more money than it can count and yet they come to us for help?

Sure is puzzling and it wouldn’t happen in reverse that’s for sure.

Michael Burd, who is a regular visitor and contributor to this site, asked me if I thought the sender was serious. I told him I would think so , there was no reason think otherwise. He told me he’d sent an email asking and he’d wait for the reply.

To this day that reply has not been forthcoming, so I think we can safely presume the answer is in the affirmative.

Yes, it is for real.

Michael wrote to the Australian Jewish News and his letter was published on Thursday 30th January.

I publish that letter now, with his permission.

I was astonished to receive an email from one of our most senior Jewish community leaders in Sydney calling for donations to help Syrians.

Syria is technically still at war with our Jewish brothers and sisters in Israel, and if Syrians were not currently fight­ing among themselves they would, in my opinion, not hesitate to continue their battle with the Jewish State under Assad or Syria’s next possible Islamist leader.

The Jewish community is being asked to donate money to the “Red Cross Syrian Crisis Appeal”.

I am not aware that there are guar­antees where this money would end up – in that part of the world I hate to think.

If, heaven forbid  across the Syrian border Israelis were fighting Israelis in a sectarian war it is,  in my opinion, inconceivable that Keysar Trad, or any other Arab or Muslim community representative,  would have the chutz­pah to canvass their constituents in Australia to donate funds to Magen David Adom to help Jews.

No doubt there will be those in the Jewish community that criticise my views with the usual condescending response

“oh, we are better than them.”


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  1. It seems that Isreal is quietly giving humanitarian aid to Syrians. We all know about the medical assistance, but on the quiet, Israeli citizens are cooperting with Jordanian humanitarian groups and previde clothes and toys and possibly money for food. There is a humanitarian crisis in Syria and Israel and Israelis are meeting their commitment to humanity and to their Jewish ethics in helping their fellow human beings.

    BUT…charity begins at home and there are many Israelis who need help, notably those whohwere displaced from Gaza. And yes, helping human beings is fine, but if one does so, why should it have to be done secretly? If the goodness has to be hidden because of Arab antisemitism, why bother? And why should Jews in the Diaspora contribute to a foreign country, at war with Israel from which jihadis are returning to our shores and who are likely to threaten our society? Why should Jews in secret be more humane than the mohammedans to each other? The filthy rich Saudis and Qataris are funding competing jihadi groups, but they seem to have no spare cash to help civilians caught between gangs of brutes competing to be more callous than the other.

    Yes, the ECAJ’s heart is in the right place, but sadly its head is stuck up its own derriere. Jewish help should be given to any worthy cause when it can be done openly and proudly.

  2. I would like to see the entire “Appeal” by ECAJ.

    True, as Paul says, Jews must demonstrate that Judaism is ABOVE human transgressions, violence etc. and we must help those who are the victims of those who Jews consider UNWORTHY OF ASSISTANCE.

    Judaism DOES include the norion of ENEMIES !!! Torah is replete with examples of people who were determined to affect, indeed DESTROY ( G-d forbid ) the people of Israel. Those were meant to be opposed, NOT helped.
    With this in mind, the help which we are supposed to provide should go SELECTIVELY ONLY to the victims.

    As such, if an appeal is to be headed, it should go ONLY through MAGEN DAVID ADOM and through any ISRAELI GOVERNMENT instrumentality involved in the same aid. Only those two entities, which ARE ON THE GROUND can do justice the Jewish way !!!

    If ECAJ do not qualify these conditions, Jewish help should not be given to the so called Syrian crisis. The “so called” qualifies the FACT that we are not at all confident that help given to ANY organisation outside strict Jewish control goes to the intended “help”.


    The Jewish community of Australia IS NOT in a working relationship with ANY organisation in Australia or overseas which has in its agenda attacks against any Israeli or generally Jewish issues !


    • Otto, totally agree. We are told to love our neighbour, but that doesn’t include our enemy who wants to destroy us. It would be suicidal to think that it does.

      We are ethical Jews; we are not Jews for Self-Destruction (except perhaps for groups like Jews for Palestine, or Jews for a Just Peace etc. Come to think of it, there are so many self-hating Jews that maybe we are becoming Jews for Self-Destruction!

    • Otto the entire appeal is posted above. I will re-post it here for you.

      Subject: Humanitarian crisis in Syria

      “If anyone wants to donate to help Syrian refugees,the Arab Council of Australia recommends the Red Cross Syrian Crisis Appeal”

  3. The point is here..

    Why on earth is the ‘peak body’ of the Jewish Community in Australia sending out appeals for donations of money from the Arab Council of Australia?

    Admittedly, and very begrudgingly in this case, if an injured person who considers himself my enemy,came to me for help, I would I suppose help in a crisis situation, but I certainly would not be donating money to him.

    That’s like stabbing yourself in the back.

  4. Maria hartley

    Unfortunately it is the women and children who probably need to be cared for. They are the ones who suffer. But if the help given is not recognised and has to be given in secret, then it is a no win situation. The rich Islamic people’s seem to do very little to help their own other than to wage war and promote hatred. When does their charity begin at home? The ordinary people of Islam are as usual the pawns in all of the various conflicts against the Jews ans Israel. What a dilemma for the Jewish people?

    • Unfortunately Maria, the oil rich Arab States care little for anyone except maybe their own inhabitants. They treat their guest workers worst than most people treat slaves.

  5. “The ECAJ, supposedly our peak body sending out monetary appeals from the Arab Council of Australia?”

    Did they consult the Jewish community, who they are supposed to represent, before sending this out? There are many struggling people in Israel who desperately need help, also – despite the myth of all Jews being mega rich – there are many poor Jews in Australia who need help, also Aussie battlers who are deserving of our help.

    Surely the mega rich countries like Dubai and the rest of the Emirates, who squander money on building artificial islands, and 7 star hotels, and cater for the mega rich mega stupid (Kate Blanchett springs to mind!) who ignore human rights abuses to go and luxuriate there, could provide the funds needed.

    Yes, the Syrian population are suffering, but it’s up to the Arabs to come to the aid of their ‘brothers’, as Jews have always come to the aid of the many Jewish refugees who have been kicked out of Arab lands.

    Syria has great emnity towards Jews and Israel. Why should we assist those who want to destroy us?

    • Pam I have no idea what the statistics in Victoria are in the Jewish population, but 20% here in NSW live below the poverty line.

      You are right when you say “what/who gives the ECAJ the right to send out begging letters for the Arab Council when it is so desperately needed with our own Community”. This is no better than the Refugee Statement than was signed off on by the Board of Deps.

      Unfortunately I was not in the hall for the vote, but my husband tells me that one woman stood up and said it like it is in regards to our illegal Muslim immigrants. The general community doesn’t go along with this, as the Leftists are in control and is the reason behind people wanting nothing to do with the Board. This and all this interfaith garbage. They say it works but they haven’t the guts to go to the streets of Bankstown, Fairfield etc with it.

      No they are not refugees in the main. They are fare paying passengers, who arrive by air from wherever and then hop on to a leaky boat to come here and we are supposed to feel sorry for them.

  6. David Baden --Australia

    Who is really behind all this rubbish? and what is their motive?

  7. Perhaps Australians for Palestine may issue an instruction to the Jewish community how Jews should direct their donations for Palestinians fleeing fighting amongst them selves too.

  8. Notwithstanding that, as we well know, Israelis are collecting food, medicines and clothing for the refugees of the Syrian conflict and fielding hospitals to treat Syrian wounded because that’s what Jews do, you and your readers may find it inappropriate, even strange, for the ECAJ to inform members of the community that “If anyone wants to donate to help Syrian refugees, the Arab Council of Australia recommends the Red Cross Syrian Crisis Appeal.” , however it is disingenuous for you to report that “… the ECAJ ASKS us (to) donate money to them (Syrian refugees)” and for Michael Burd to say that the ECAJ is ”…..CALLING for donations to help Syrians.” when it did no such thing: “IF ANYONE WANTS TO …”

    The ECAJ has, on previous occasions, advised the community where donations can be made in cases of urgent humanitarian crises including in Muslim countries. That’s what Jews do. To compare the ECAJ or any element of the Jewish community to “Keysar Trad, or any other Arab or Muslim community representative.” and what actions they may take vis-à-vis the Jewish Community is simply wrong. That is not what Jews do.

    You and your readers should find ideology driven reporting inappropriate, even wrong. What did the ECAJ say? Not what did you hear? All this angst …..

  9. Don’t know about you Danny, and you do what you like, but I wouldn’t for one moment help people who wished me dead. I also find you to be somewhat of an enigma considering your activities elsewhere.

    Try going out to the streets of Lakemba, Bankstown, Liverpool, Blacktown and other points west and asking them to give to Jews or to Israel and you’d likely by knifed in the stomach.

    We know how much our help is appreciated appreciated – not.

    Cast your mind back to 1999 to the Iran earthquake. Immediately Israel offered help only for that offer to be hit on the head. There have been several times since

    “We will accept help from anyone except Israel”

    2012 an Israeli a Foreign Ministry spokesman in Jerusalem said

    “We offered Iran assistance after earthquakes in the past, but they refused. So this time, we didn’t even bother to ask if they’re interested,”.

    Has Israel finally woken up?

    Turkey also refused in 2011.

    I feel sorry for the people suffering but of one thing you can be sure, whatever you do would not be repaid in kind ever.

    “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you”

    We have 20% of the Jewish Community in this State living below the poverty line. They get my help before people who wish me dead.

  10. Danny, firstly judging by the controversial email we received from the ECAJ, it appears to me the ECAJ has been contacted by the Arab/ Islamic community advising where they would like Jews to donate money to Syrians. Which is bizarre in itself.

    Can you ever imagine Jewish community leaders contacting the Arab /Islamic community advising for their community members to donate money to Magen David Adom for Jewish relief?

    Alternatively the ECAJ contacted the Arab/ Islamic community to ask them where should Jews direct any donations to the Syrian cause.If so why?

    From the overwhelming reaction to my letter in the AJN most people also thought the ECAJ email was a tongue-in-cheek attempt at humour and were equally outraged .

    You insinuate we Jews should donate money to Muslim countries, Why? I’m curious as to which countries we Jews should support Danny, Pakistan where they decapitate Jews? Iraq, Iran, Syria, Afghanistan, Egypt, Palestinian territories, or other Jew friendly countries perhaps more moderate like UAE, Saudi Arabia, Oman you know Danny these countries that discriminate against Israeli Jews and wont allow entry to their fiefdoms.

    I would think there are enough wealthy Islamic countries around the globe which can afford to fund all Muslim refugees who, by the way, are are fighting amongst themselves how tolerant they are .

    Whilst we Jews in Australia live under a siege like mentality from Muslims {extremists} and according to a recent ECAJ statement we will be living under this siege for some time to come.

    There is no reason Jews should be supporting those people who wish us harm, even if it is as they say a minority? That is called self-preservation Danny.

    You may be happy to accept living with Armed Guards and looking over your shoulder as your lot in Life Danny but not all of us are that tolerant and believe someone should be held responsible.

    ECAJ do a good Job trying to defend Israel’s case in Australia, I wish they would stick to this task instead of dividing the community over their old fashioned and outdated Multiculturalism views and asylum seekers obsession /mishegas.

    Lastly I note your comment ‘You and your readers’.. ever so self righteous and condescending perhaps a little less of that please.


  11. It seems that the roof bodies here are mimicking the Israeli habit of the Freudian “compulsion to repeat”.
    That is, to continually shoot itself in the foot, or stab oneself in the back, as was noted above.

    By which I mean:
    not expelling the Arabs in 1948 (when population transfer was very much in vogue, unlike today);
    by itself starting and generating the confusion over the status of the territory it captured in 1967 declaring it occupied under military law and settlements in violation of the 4 Geneva Convention (Theodor Meron – much quoted by Bob Carr, Meir Shamgar etc.);
    the legitimization of the PLO and the predictable catastrophe of Oslo;
    the unilateral ceding of territory (Gaza);
    not permitting Jews to pray in their Holiest place smack in the middle of the Holy City (and national capital!);
    offering to give away most of Judea and Samaria, more than once, as if the Palestinian Arabs somehow magically have legal title over land Mandated for a reconstituted Jewish Home (treason, under Israeli Basic Law);
    recent medical treatment of Gaza PM Haniyeh’s grandchild, to the current charade that masquerades as Peace Talks – and paying an entry price of releasing 104 convicted prisoners for the privilege! It just goes on and on, and I think we all know the reasons for this

    Peace is surely a desirable goal, but not at the price of potential collective national suicide.

    But then, this is perhaps not new news, the insanity of so much of the misguided elites-driven Israeli Policy, and subsequent kow-towing by local roof bodies.

    I’m just glad I never received that email from the ECAJ, and disturbed – but not surprised – that they have not seen fit to reply to those who have questioned it.