Emily Gian. ZFA Media & Advocacy Director.

Israel 70!

Recently, my five-year-old son started asking me about soldiers. It all began when we were visiting my husband’s family in Israel last year. He saw a soldier walking to the bus stop early one morning and grabbed my hand and moved to hide behind me: living in Australia he is certainly not used …

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Seven years.

It has been seven years since five members of the Fogel family – parents Ehud and Ruth, and three of their six children Yoav 11, Elad 4 and Hadas who was only three months old – were butchered in their home in Itamar while they were sleeping.  Baby Hadas was …

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When Israel fired back .

On Saturday morning (Saturday evening in Australia), news began to filter through about an incident in Israel’s north – an Iranian drone flying into Israeli sovereign territory, a downed F-16 jet.  It was not clear straight away, but the IDF did post a timeline of the events and how the drama all unfolded: …

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Lorde made a mistake.

New Zealand singer Lorde was quoted in a recent Guardian article as saying, “I want to be Leonard Cohen,” so when my father, a life-long Cohen fan, heard about this and the reasons for the cancellation of the Tel Aviv leg of her world tour show which also involves two gigs in …

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O Jerusalem (If I forget you).

The year started in almost the same way it finished – with controversy surrounding an American President and Israel. In late December 2016, the United Nations Security Council passed UNSC Resolution 2334, which related to Israeli settlements in “Palestinian territories occupied since 1967, including East Jerusalem.” The United States of …

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Running from the truth.

I accidentally found myself caught up right in the middle of the Run for Palestinian Human Rights event yesterday. Yes, me. A proud Zionist. I was just trying to find a parking spot outside the Royal Botanical Gardens in Melbourne on a beautiful, sunny Sunday morning when I saw small …

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Herzl’s Dream.

I have just returned from over a month in Israel with my family over the Jewish Holidays. In my head, I had been planning to write a piece about some reflections I had relating to Israel, Theodore Herzl and whether the Zionist dream had been fulfilled. Whenever we visit Israel …

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From the Island to Zion.

I have just returned from an overseas vacation with my family. My husband is Israeli and for some reason, I will sometimes get nervous if people ask where he comes from. Despite the fact that we never travel to particularly “unfriendly” countries or areas, you never can tell what sort …

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We need to talk about Gaza.

Some events of note have happened in Gaza in the last week or so, not necessarily related, but they make up a part of a bigger problem, one that is not being sufficiently aired and dealt with in the public domain. I will move chronologically. The first event was the …

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Stars, Stripes and Selfies.

On Monday afternoon, the President of the United States, Donald Trump touched down in Israel after a visit to Saudi Arabia. The flight from Riyadh, Saudi Arabia to Tel Aviv, Israel was an historic one given it was the first direct flight between the two countries, which have no official diplomatic relations. Prime …

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The (not-so-hungry) Hunger Strike.

I took a gap year from University in the early days of the Second Intifada.  At that time, sadly, there were terrorist attacks occurring in Israel, sometimes on a daily basis.  In those days, there was one Palestinian terrorist whose name kept popping up again and again – Marwan Barghouti. …

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The news last night.

The following is a slightly modified version of a Facebook post written last night at 10:24pm by ZFA Director of Media and Advocacy Emily Gian.  Join the conversation on Facebook here.  Just a few hours ago, I received an alert on my phone about a suspected chemical attack by the …

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Let’s be Frank.

From the first time I saw it, I was unable to get it out of my head. A picture. It was of a participant at a Women’s Solidarity March earlier this year in America.  She wore a keffiyeh and a Palestinian flag draped around her, and a t-shirt with the …

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When Bibi came to town.

After months of planning and anticipation, and indeed years of wondering if it would ever eventuate, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu finally came to Australia last week on a five-day whirlwind visit.  In the process, he made history as the first sitting Israeli Prime Minister to visit our fair shores. …

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Trumping Solutions.

Two days ago, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and American President Donald Trump met in Washington for the first time since the latter was inaugurated. The greeting was done in a far warmer manner than similar meeting between Netanyahu and Trump’s predecessor Barack Obama. The two discussed a number of …

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Childish games.

Not long ago, a group of 49 State and Federal Australian MPs signed a petition critical of the alleged “cruel” mistreatment by Israel of Palestinian minors in detention in the West Bank (actually the number is 48 because one  signatory denies having signed it and APAN have apologised). The petition …

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UN-acceptable.

During this year’s Australian Federal Election campaign, three candidates who were running for parliamentary office in my own electorate of Melbourne Ports were scheduled to debate at a forum co-hosted by the Australian Jewish News and Zionism Victoria. The Greens candidate, Steph Hodgins-May withdrew from the debate claiming among her …

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Trump’d.

I have thought about how I would write this for over two weeks now. I know it is important to cover the US Elections in terms of what it means for the world and for Israel and the Jewish people, but given that the American public itself is so divided …

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Will the media ask for redemption this Jewish New Year?

One does not have to be particularly religious at this time of the year to take the opportunity to reflect on the past twelve months or so and to think of what will be in the year to come. As I look back, my mind inevitably wanders through the events …

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Unsocial Media

A little while ago, I embarked upon some research on social media, and in particular the issue of how Israel is represented there. It would probably come as no surprise to any of you that there exists a substantial body of anti-Israel content in this sphere. Much of it particularly …

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