By Eli Ajzenman
As Israeli soldiers were going into battle under the cover of nightfall, here in the bright sunshine of a glorious Melbourne summer day, some 300-400 Jewish members of the community,some non Jewish supporters,as well as a few politicians and community leaders made the effort to attend a rally on the steps of the Victorian Parliament House in Spring st today.
While our soldiers were greeted with mortar fire from the enemy, here we were greeted with fiery speeches of condemnation of Hamas.
Members of Federal Parliament inc Michael Danby representing the Rudd Government and Liberal Senator Mitch Fifield,both gave probably predictable if not similar speeches of condemnation of Hamas, Australia’s unending support with constant reference to the unavoidable but necessary action of the Israeli Defense forces.
An interesting subtext of separating Hamas from the general Palestinian population of Gaza,was cleverly intertwined with descriptions of “innocents” who would suffer from both sides of the conflict.
Iran was prominently and consistently affixed with Hamas as the partner if not the director of all that was occurring in Gaza. Emotional references to Bali, Mumbai and NY 9/11 rounded off the package of well rehearsed media sound bytes.
It wasn’t until Danny Lamm spoke that some true emotion and realistic sentiment of what was occurring in Gaza and in the world generally that made the event worth attending. Danny was straight up in announcing that this whole conflict is about anti-antisemitism, anti Zionism an anti Israel.
The world and a lot of us try to hide the fact that this conflict is not about land and peace, but one group wanting to eliminate the Jews from the middle east. This is the conflict, this is why we as Jews need to stand up and support Israel.
The rally ended soberly with speakers asking people to quickly go home as an anti Israel rally was due to be there soon. I am not sure what conflict the authorities were trying to avoid.
However a number of Israeli’s together with a few chabbadnicks and some of the more fervent “no arabs in Israel” placard carrying members of the crowd joined in fervent song and circle dancing on the lower steps.
Waving Israeli flags and the now familiar yellow “moshiach” banners with loud and boisterous voices they at least seemed determined to let “those” coming that there was a crowd of Jews here who will not always just quietly dissipate into the train stations.
Rally outside Parliament House Melbourne