Palestinians use Australian Campuses to Delegitimize Israel and Australia

01.09.22
Editorial Note

Last week, the University of Melbourne Student Union council voted in favor of BDS against Israel in solidarity with the Palestinians.

In their statement, the union declared that the University of Melbourne proudly supports Israel. The University “works hand in glove with Lockheed Martin, the world’s largest weapons manufacturer and a major collaborator with Israel.” The University of Melbourne opened up a research and development center for Lockheed Martin in 2016, “which is used to advance research in military technology and channel students into the military sector. In partnership with Lockheed Martin, Melbourne University is funding the creation of drones and missiles that will be used to attack Gaza and the West Bank. Another partnership the University maintains is with the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, which offers programs to train up future Israeli Defense Force soldiers, the same people who go on to terrorize, brutalize and kill Palestinians. In 2014, the Hebrew University publicly declared its support for Israel’s war on Gaza and called for donations to bolster the war effort. More than 2,000 Palestinians were murdered during this eight-week onslaught. The Hebrew University administration called the cops on Palestinian students as they protested the war.”

For the Student Union, the Israeli Apartheid Week activities on campus “demonstrate that there is support for the Palestinian struggle, and that people will not easily be intimidated by legal threats from Liberal students. Around 65 students and staff attended a speak-out in solidarity with the people of Gaza, where Victorian Socialists candidate for Northern Metro Jerome Small spoke about Israel’s recent attack on the Gaza Strip. The attack killed more than 47 Palestinians, among them 16 children, and 360 people were injured. Just prior to launching the attack, Israel ramped up its long-standing blockade of Gaza, cutting off access to fuel and electricity and bringing an already strained hospital system to the brink of collapse.”

It is customary that pro-Palestinian advocates de-contextualize the events. shey do not discuss the background of the conflagration, which was triggered by the Palestinian Islamic Jihad operating under orders from Iran. They don’t mention that the PIJ launched hundreds of missiles into Israel. The declaration conveniently omitted that more than half of those killed were PIJ operatives. Many civilians were killed when the rockets misfired and landed in urban centers from the jihadist operation. Hiding among the civilian population is against international war conventions, which all Palestinian terror groups have ignored.

The student union runs other activities including a forum on “Why you should oppose Israeli Apartheid” and an artwork on the university’s South Lawn that encouraged students to write solidarity messages on Palestinian flags. The union’s official endorsement of BDS “means there is an opening for students and staff to further demonstrate their solidarity with Palestinians. Given there have been threats of further legal action, continuing to unapologetically stand with the oppressed against Israel will be important.”

Already a BDS motion was passed before. On April 29, the University of Melbourne Student Union passed a motion calling for BDS against Israel entitled “UMSU stands with Palestine – BDS and Student Policy.” The motion condemned Zionism as a “racist, colonial ideology” and called for the University to cut ties with Israel and divest from companies associated with Israel. The resolution was followed by a similar resolution attacking Israel passed by the Sydney University Students’ Representative Council and a resolution in support of a student at the Australian National University. But on May 27, 2022, the student union rescinded the motion following complaints that it was antisemitic and caused Jewish students to feel unsafe on campus, as described by the University of Melbourne.

Indeed, these are not spontaneous activities. Last year, WAFA, the official Palestinian news agency, following the war between Gaza and Israel, announced that “More than 400 Australian scholars and academics have released an open letter in solidarity with Palestine, and called on the Australian government to condemn Israel and its actions. “As scholars, academics and students in Australia, we stand in solidarity with Palestinians in their struggle for liberation and against Israeli settler colonialism,” the letter said. “In the past month, Palestinians have faced brutal Israeli settler colonial violence in the Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood of East Jerusalem and al-Aqsa mosque, the West Bank, Gaza, and in Palestinian cities and towns in Israel. This violence is rooted in a century of colonization and Palestinian dispossession.” And that “Israel has declared a war on Palestinians. We have seen worshipers attacked in al-Aqsa mosque during the holy month of Ramadan, families facing the threat of forced removal from their homes, protestors shot and tear gassed, Israeli security forces and Israeli-Jewish mobs attacking Palestinians in Lydda, Jaffa and Haifa. We have witnessed massacres in Gaza, with entire families obliterated.”

It means that the Palestinian Authority is pulling the strings in Australia.

The petition by the scholars and academics also stated that “As scholars, academics and students in Australia, a settler colony built on the dispossession of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.”

Also, as mentioned before, in 2016, the University of Melbourne opened up a research and development center for Lockheed Martin, “which is used to advance research in military technology and channel students into the military sector.” As if such development is negative.

In other words, the Palestinians are working on the delegitimization of Australia, not only Israel. The student union accuses the University of Melbourne of “anti-colonial posturing and pink-washing.  “The University shrouds itself in progressive gloss—from the huge WOMENJIKA sign at one entrance to the campus (Womenjika is the Woi-wurrung word for welcome) to the array of pride and trans flags scattered throughout campus.”

Worth noting that the two Palestinian entities, Gaza and the West Bank, persecute the LGBTQ community, forcing them to seek refuge in Israel.

Although small, the Palestinian diaspora community in the West is highly busy trying to delegitimize the West. Australia is a good example of this trend.

References

https://redflag.org.au/article/melbourne-university-student-union-reaffirms-support-palestine

Melbourne University student union reaffirms support for Palestine

by Emma Dynes and Bella Beiraghi

Sunday, 28 August 2022

The University of Melbourne Student Union council for the second time voted in favour of the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions campaign against Israel and in solidarity with Palestine on 15 August.

The motion, which was passed 16 votes to three, was moved by Palestinian international student and activist Dana Alshaer, and recognised that “the growth of the Israeli economy and land is built on the exploitation and colonisation of Palestinians” and called for the university to “divest from corporations complicit in and profit from the Israeli apartheid and that operate on illegally occupied Palestinian land”.

This follows a months-long battle between Zionists and Palestine solidarity activists over a previous pro-Palestine motion passed in April. That motion provoked a significant backlash from Zionists on campus, as well as from the University administration and the Murdoch press. Threats from a Liberal Party-aligned student to launch a class action against the union resulted in the council rescinding the motion in June.

The union then hired a consultancy firm to survey the student body on the question of Palestine. A large majority—73 of 124 surveyed—believed the union should adopt a motion endorsing the Boycott Divestment and Sanctions campaign against Israel. This was an important factor in strengthening the council’s resolve.

The successful vote also followed the Israeli Apartheid Week event on campus, organised by Students for Palestine. The central demand of the week was for the University of Melbourne to sever its ties with Israel. The University shrouds itself in progressive gloss—from the huge WOMENJIKA sign at one entrance to the campus (Womenjika is the Woi-wurrung word for welcome) to the array of pride and trans flags scattered throughout campus. But despite this anti-colonial posturing and pink-washing, the University proudly supports Israel.

The University works hand in glove with Lockheed Martin, the world’s largest weapons manufacturer and a major collaborator with Israel. According to a Lockheed Martin information webpage, the value of “collaboration between Lockheed Martin and Israeli industries [from 2004 to today] is expected to exceed $4 billion”. The University of Melbourne opened up a research and development centre for Lockheed Martin in 2016, which is used to advance research in military technology and channel students into the military sector. In partnership with Lockheed Martin, Melbourne University is funding the creation of drones and missiles that will be used to attack Gaza and the West Bank.

Another partnership the University maintains is with the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, which offers programmes to train up future Israeli Defence Force soldiers, the same people who go on to terrorise, brutalise and kill Palestinians. In 2014, the Hebrew University publicly declared its support for Israel’s war on Gaza and called for donations to bolster the war effort. More than 2,000 Palestinians were murdered during this eight-week onslaught. The Hebrew University administration called the cops on Palestinian students as they protested the war.

Israeli Apartheid Week activities on campus demonstrate that there is support for the Palestinian struggle, and that people will not easily be intimidated by legal threats from Liberal students. Around 65 students and staff attended a speak-out in solidarity with the people of Gaza, where Victorian Socialists candidate for Northern Metro Jerome Small spoke about Israel’s recent attack on the Gaza Strip. The attack killed more than 47 Palestinians, among them 16 children, and 360 people were injured. Just prior to launching the attack, Israel ramped up its long-standing blockade of Gaza, cutting off access to fuel and electricity and bringing an already strained hospital system to the brink of collapse.

Other activities included a forum on “Why you should oppose Israeli Apartheid” and an artwork on the university’s South Lawn that encouraged students to write solidarity messages on Palestinian flags.

The union’s official endorsement of the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions campaign means there is an opening for students and staff to further demonstrate their solidarity with Palestinians. Given there have been threats of further legal action, continuing to unapologetically stand with the oppressed against Israel will be important.

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https://english.wafa.ps/Pages/Details/124734

+400 Australian academics send open letter in solidarity with Palestine, call for action

RAMALLAH, Tuesday, May 25, 2021 (WAFA) – More than 400 Australian scholars and academics have released an open letter in solidarity with Palestine, and called on the Australian government to condemn Israel and its actions.

“As scholars, academics and students in Australia, we stand in solidarity with Palestinians in their struggle for liberation and against Israeli settler colonialism,” the letter said. “In the past month, Palestinians have faced brutal Israeli settler colonial violence in the Sheikh Jarrah neighbourhood of East Jerusalem and al-Aqsa mosque, the West Bank, Gaza, and in Palestinian cities and towns in Israel.  This violence is rooted in a century of colonisation and Palestinian dispossession.”

“Israel has declared a war on Palestinians. We have seen worshipers attacked in al-Aqsa mosque during the holy month of Ramadan, families facing the threat of forced removal from their homes, protestors shot and tear gassed, Israeli security forces and Israeli-Jewish mobs attacking Palestinians in Lydda, Jaffa and Haifa. We have witnessed massacres in Gaza, with entire families obliterated.

Israel’s actions are in violation of international law. East Jerusalem, the West Bank, and Gaza are considered occupied under international law and Israel is responsible to guarantee Palestinian residents of these territories special protection. Instead, Israel is confiscating Palestinian land and homes, committing ethnic cleansing, and engaging in war crimes and grave breaches of the Geneva Convention. The recent report of Human Rights Watch has concluded that Israeli actions towards Palestinians in territories it controls, from both sides of the Green Line, amount “to the crimes against humanity of apartheid and persecution.”

“The shelling of Gaza from air, sea and land; the mob violence enacted against Palestinians within Israel; and Israeli military and settler violence against Palestinians in the West Bank and East Jerusalem should not go unanswered by the international community. While ceasefire with Hamas in Gaza has been declared, we remind the world that Palestinians across all historic Palestine continue to be subject to Israeli colonisation, apartheid and occupation,” the statement added.

The letter emphasized that ‘silence is not an option.’

“We call on the Australian government to condemn the state of Israel and its actions, and re-evaluate its current and proposed trade agreements. We also call on the Australian government to suspend its defence cooperation with Israel and halt acquisitions of Israeli military equipment. As scholars, academics and students committed to decolonising knowledge, it is our responsibility to speak up and stand with Palestinians against the forces of colonialism, injustice and inequality and for an immediate cessation of Israeli violence in all its forms,” the letter concluded.

K.T./ K.F.

==================================================================

https://australiaacademicspalestine.weebly.com

Palestine and Australian Academics

OPEN LETTER

AUSTRALIAN ACADEMICS OPEN LETTER IN SOLIDARITY WITH PALESTINE AND CALL FOR ACTION

SIGN HERE
As scholars, academics and students in Australia, a settler colony built on the dispossession of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples, we stand in solidarity with Palestinians in their struggle for liberation and against Israeli settler colonialism. In the past month, Palestinians have faced brutal Israeli settler colonial violence in the Sheikh Jarrah neighbourhood of East Jerusalem and al-Aqsa mosque, the West Bank, Gaza, and in Palestinian cities and towns in Israel.  This violence is rooted in a century of colonisation and Palestinian dispossession.

Israel has declared a war on Palestinians. We have seen worshipers attacked in al-Aqsa mosque during the holy month of Ramadan, families facing the threat of forced removal from their homes, protestors shot and tear gassed, Israeli security forces and Israeli-Jewish mobs attacking Palestinians in Lydda, Jaffa and Haifa. We have witnessed massacres in Gaza, with entire families obliterated.

Israel’s actions are in violation of international law. East Jerusalem, the West Bank, and Gaza are considered occupied under international law and Israel is responsible to guarantee Palestinian residents of these territories special protection. Instead, Israel is confiscating Palestinian land and homes, committing ethnic cleansing, and engaging in war crimes and grave breaches of the Geneva Convention. The recent report of Human Rights Watch has concluded that Israeli actions towards Palestinians in territories it controls, from both sides of the Green Line, amount “to the crimes against humanity of apartheid and persecution.”

The shelling of Gaza from air, sea and land; the mob violence enacted against Palestinians within Israel; and Israeli military and settler violence against Palestinians in the West Bank and East Jerusalem should not go unanswered by the international community. While ceasefire with Hamas in Gaza has been declared, we remind the world that Palestinians across all historic Palestine continue to be subject to Israeli colonisation, apartheid and occupation.

Silence is not an option.

We call on the Australian government to condemn the state of Israel and its actions, and re-evaluate its current and proposed trade agreements. We also call on the Australian government to suspend its defence cooperation with Israel and halt acquisitions of Israeli military equipment. As scholars, academics and students committed to decolonising knowledge, it is our responsibility to speak up and stand with Palestinians against the forces of colonialism, injustice and inequality and for an immediate cessation of Israeli violence in all its forms.
SIGN HERE
PLEASE NOTE: signatories are being uploaded manually by a few volunteers. Please be patient with us while we continue to update the list daily. Thank you for your support!
Signatories:

Aileen Moreton-Robinson, RMIT Randa Abdel Fattah, Macquarie University Gary Foley, Victoria University Lana Tatour, University of New South Wales Amy McQuire, University of Queensland Ghassan Hage, The University of Melbourne Tony Birch, Academic and Author Samah Sabawi, Independent Scholar Crystal McKinnon, RMIT Sara Saleh, University of New South Wales Alison Whittaker, University Technology Sydney Suvendrini Perera, Curtin University Jane Lydon, The University of Western Australia Joseph Pugliese, Macquarie University Chelsea Bond, The University of Queensland Karima Laachir, Australian National University Fethi Mansoori, Deakin University Evelyn Araluen, The University of Sydney Micaela Sahhar, The University of Melbourne Tasnim Mahmoud Sammak, Monash University Mohamad Abdalla, Griffith University Sameeha Elwan, Curtin University Anas Iqtait, Australian National University Lucia Sorbera, University of Sydney Paula Abood, University of New South Wales Michael Mohammed Ahmad, Western Sydney University Bassam Dally, The University of Adelaide Eugenia Flynn, Queensland University of Technology Ryan Al-Natour, Charles Sturt University Sary Zananiri, Leiden University Ahmad Shboul, The University of Sydney Amin Saikal, University of Western Australia Halim Rane, Griffith University Muhammad Sulaiman, University of South Australia Andrew Brooks, University of New South Wales Nick Riemer, University of Sydney Alana Lentin, Western Sydney University Na’ama Carlin, University of New South Wales Ayman Qwaider Debbie Bargallie, Griffith University Jumana Bayeh, Macquarie University Samya Jabbour, Curtin University Ben Golder, University of New South Wales Tanja Dreher, University of New South Wales David Brophy, University of Sydney Liyana Kayali, Australian National University Adel Yousif, University of Tasmania Farah Fayyad, Macquarie University Jessie Moritz, Australian National University Andy Kaladelfos, University of New South Wales Leila Kouatly, Australian National University Janja Peric, Australian National University Esther Armanious, Australian National University Philip Etches, Australian National University Ian Parmeter, Australian National University Amro Ali, American University in Cairo Nesrine Basheer, The University of Sydney Ali Aldahesh, The University of Sydney Kirill Nourzhanov, Australian National University Stephanie Hemelryk Donald, Monash University Scheherazade Bloul, Deakin University Eda Gunaydin, University of Sydney Mariam Farida, University of New South Wales Azima Akhmatova, Australian National University Dara Conduit, Deakin University Marika Sosnowski, GIGA Hamburg Hadeel Abdelhameed, Deakin University Sarah Philips, The University of Sydney Nora Amath, Griffith University Meaghan Morris, The University of Sydney Nasser Ghobadzadeh, Australian National University Peter Manning, UTS Burcu Cevik-Compiegne,  Australian National University France Meyer, Australian National University Jonathan Dunk, Deakin University Giovanni Tiso, Overland Literary Journal Toby Fitch, The University of Sydney Claire Corbett, UTS Souheir Edelbi, University of New South Wales Mike Griffiths,  University of Wollongong Samy Akil, Australian National University Khalid AlBostanji, Australian National University Mona Albluwi, Australian National University Eva Nisa, Australian National University Firouzeh Khoshnoudiparast, Australian National University Muath Amayreh, Australian National University Geir Henning Presterudstuen, Western Sydney University Laura Smith-Khan, UTS Linda Briskman, Western Sydney University Intan Paramaditha, Macquarie University Carolyn D’Cruz, La Trobe University Jordana Silverstein, La Trobe University. James Godfrey, Independent Scholar Fahad Ali, Sydney University Felicity Gray, ANU Roanna Gonsalves Scott Poynting, QUT and Charies Sturt Jess Whyte, UNSW Maria Giannacopoulos, Flinders University John Maynard, University of Newcastle Justine Lloyd, Macquarie University Dave McDonald, The University of Melbourne Margaret Mayhew, Independent Scholar Samina Yasmeen, University of Western Australia Mehal Krayem, UTS Paul Tabar, Western Sydney University Faisal Al-Asaad, Melbourne University Lobna Yassine, Australian Catholic University Dilnoza Ubaydullaeva, Australian National University James Trevelyan, University of Western Australia Nafiseh Ghafournia, University of Newcastle Anisa Buckley, University of Melbourne George Morgan, Western Sydney University Noah Basil, Macquarie University Maree Pardy, Deakin University Julia Dehm, LaTrobe University Randi Irwin, The University of Newcastle Rifaie Tammas, University of Sydney Baden Offord, Curtin University Zora Simic, University of New South Wales Anastasia Murney. University of New South Wales Brigitta Olubas, University of New South Wales Anne Monsour. University of Queensland Padraic Gibson, University of Technology Sydney Effie Karageorgos. The University of Newcastle Scott Burchill, Deakin University Marcelo Svirsky, University of Wollongong Helen Groth, University of New South Wales Rusaila Bazlamit, Curtin University Julian Murphet, The University of Adelaide Freya Higgins-Desbiolles, University of South Australia Suzannah Henty, University of Melbourne Ben Silverstein, Australian National University Kathryn Daley, RMIT University Sara Dehm, University of Technology Sherene Idriss, Deakin University Anjali Walisinghe Barbara Bloch, Independent Scholar S A Hamed Hosseini, University of Newcastle Nisha Thapliyal,  University of Newcastle Debbi Long, University of Newcastle Sharlene Leroy-Dyer, University of Queensland Timothy Laurie, University of Technology Sydney Benjamin Kelly, University of New South Wales Nadia David, RMIT Tristan Dunning, University of Queensland Adis Duderija, Griffith University Jan A. Ali, Western Sydney University Ned Curthoys, University of Western Australia Una Stone, RMIT Peta Malins, RMIT Meghan A. Bohren, Melbourne University Martin Kear, University of Sydney Evan Smith, Flinders University Heba Al Adawy, Australian National University Ari Jerrems, Independent scholar Kurt Sengul,  University of Newcastle Leila Khaled, Charles Sturt University Indigo Willing, Griffith Centre for Social and Cultural Research Fiona Lee, University of Sydney Sarah Attfield,  University of Technology Sydney Max Kaiser, University of Melbourne Eugenia Demuro, Deakin University Lara Palombo, Macquarie University Briony Neilson,  The University of Sydney Kate Clark, Monash University Paige Donaghy, University of Queensland Gok-Lim Finch, University of Western Australia Yves Rees, La Trobe University Jarrod Hore, UNSW Priya Kunjan, University of Melbourne Carlos Morreo, Institute of Postcolonial Studies Sulagna Basu, University of Sydney Nicholas Harrigan, Macquarie University Claire Parfitt, Independent Giles Fielke University of Melbourne Ingrid Matthews,  Western Sydney University Emma Mitchell, Western Sydney University Amanda Wise, Macquarie University Melanie Ashe Monash University Radha O’Meara, University of Melbourne Francesco Ricatti, Monash University Padraic Gibson, University of Technology Sydney Jack Shield, University of Queensland Melissa Fagan, Curtin University Alistair Sisson, University of Wollongong Sarah McDonald, University of South Australia Anastasia Kanjere, La Trobe University Raihan Ismail, Australian National University Lina Koleilat, Australian National University Jack Buckley, Independent Tyler Gleason, University of Melbourne Iain Davidson, University of New England Arathi Sriprakash, University of Bristol (formerly USyd) Dashiell Moore, University of Sydney Flávia Julius, Macquarie University Alissa Macoun, QUT Rachel Coghlan, Deakin University Peter Slezak, University of New South Wales Abdul Rahman,  Deakin University Catherine Weiss, RMIT Umut Ozguc, Deakin University Sophie Rudolph, University of Melbourne Beth Marsden, La Trobe University Tony Allison, Australian National University Rebecca Sheehan, Macquarie University Jordan Mcswiney, The University of Sydney Abdulla Al-Etaibi, Australian National University Jane Carey, University of Wollongong Joel Stern, Monash University Caitlin Biddolph, UNSW Mohammed Afefy, Latrobe University Zainab Mourad,  Western Sydney University Megan Weier, University of New South Wales Mhamed Biygautane, The University of Melbourne Ayda Succarie, Western Sydney University Khalil Al Jerjawi, Western Sydney University Chin Jou, University of Sydney Elisabeth Yarbakhsh, Australian National University Isabella Gullifer-Laurie, The University of Melbourne Lauren Piko, Independent scholar Valentina Baú, University of New South Wales Lindsay Kelley, UNSW Phillip Wadds, UNSW Hana Assafiri, APAN Verónica Tello, UNSW George (Kev) Dertadian, UNSW Shakira Hussein, The University of Melbourne Dan Tout, Federation University Rafa Marjan, Australian National University Ismail Albayrak, ACU Fleur Johns, UNSW Astrid Lorange, UNSW Benjamin Richmond, Swinburne University of Technology Mohamed Ibrahim, Swinburne University Jessa Rogers, Macquarie University Mahmood Nathie, University South Australia Heather Gaye Anderson, Griffith University Mary Anne Kenny, Murdoch University Ihsan Yilmaz, Deakin University Jon Piccini, Australian Catholic University Monika Barthwal-Datta, University of New South Wales Ntina Tzouvala, ANU Cin Webb, Western Sydney University Lucas Lixinski, UNSW Peter Burdon, University of Adelaide Cait Storr, University of Technology Sydney Ghena Krayem, University of Sydney Jeff sparrow, University of Melbourne Jessica Gannaway, University of Melbourne Salmaan Parkar, Charles Sturt University Camilla Palmer, UNSW/Curtin Jessica Mamons, Griffith University Muhammad Ashraf, Islamic medical association of QLD Lara Daley, University of Newcastle Sara Cheikh, Deakin University Jason Hartley, Griffith University Justine Lloyd, Macquarie University Hannah Carey, Griffith University Lisa Hartley, Curtin University Hakan Coruh, CISAC Dina Afrianty, La Trobe University Elizabeth Strakosch, University of Queensland Gaala Watson, University of Queensland Martin Clark, University of Tasmania Jonathan Dunk, Deakin University Rosalind Bellamy, La Trobe University Saffaa, University of Sydney Stephanie Green, Griffith University Katie Maher, University of South Australia Larry Stillman, Monash University Enya Moore, University of Technology Sydney Noah Riseman, Australian Catholic University Hanan Dover, Psychcentral PTY LTD Tobia Fattore, Macquarie University Lindsay McCabe, University of Sydney Marc Mierowsky, University of Melbourne Mark LeVine, Sydney University Alexia Derbas, Western Sydney University Mainul Islam, University of Southern Queensland Rosalie Atie, Western Sydney University Christopher Mayes, Deakin University Eman Taleb, University of Sydney Shawna Tang, University of Sydney Claire Akhbari, University of Melbourne Michael Richardson, UNSW Anna Copeland, Murdoch University Simeon Gready, University of Melbourne Katie Brennan, University of Queensland Zarlasht Sarwari, Western Sydney University Zuleyha Keskin, Charles Sturt University Sigi Jottkandt, UNSW David Pritchard, University of Queensland Erick Viramontes, Australian National University Mehal, University of Technology Sydney Aidan Craney, La Trobe University Isobel Beasley, University of Melbourne Amanda Porter, Melbourne law school Rosi Aryal Lees, Monash University Matt Partridge, Australian National University Ahmad Hassan, Charles Sturt University Zeynep Nevzat, University of Technology Sydney Fia Hamid-Walker, University of Melbourne Claerwen O’Hara, University of Melbourne Natalie Osborne, Griffith University Dirk Moses, University of Sydney Mohammed Rashidh, Jamia Madeenathunnoor Shahjahan Khan,  University of Southern Queensland Nazanin Zadeh-Cummings, Deakin University Selvaraj Velayutham, Macquarie University Susan Forde, Griffith University Cai Fong, University of Queensland Brady Robards, Monash University Joshua Badge, Swinburne University Susie Latham, Western Sydney University Batool Moussa, Swinburne University of Technology Gavin Trewella, Charles Darwin University Exequiel Sepulveda Escobedo, The University of Adelaide Taylor Redwood, University of Sydney Dylan Lino, University of Queensland Bridget Backhaus, Griffith University Jaime Pineda-Araneda, Griffith University Aysun Veliefendi Jamal Nabulsi, University of Queensland Lila Moosad, University of Melbourne Georgina Mulcahy, University of Sydney Dhakshayini Sooriyakumaran, Australian National University Ika Willis, University of Wollongong Sertan Saral, University of Sydney Catherine Greenhill, UNSW Freya Moran, Griffith University Ksenia Arapko, University of New South Wales Anna Carlson,  University of Queensland Helen McCue, Sydney University Leticia Anderson, Southern Cross University Kyle Harvey, University of Tasmania David Singh, University of Queensland Edwin Kwong, University of Melbourne Emily Hogan, JMC Academy Tooran Alizadeh, The University of Sydney Quah Ee Ling, University of Wollongong Abdul Hadi Shah-Idil, Charles Sturt University Zahra Taheri, Australian National University Andrew Whelan, University of Wollongong Kathryn Henne, Australian National University Cristina Rocha, Western Sydney University Greg Giannis, La Trobe University Bonnie Jane Gordon, University of Melbourne Rhiannon Bandiera, Maynooth University Sophie Hardcastle, UNSW Niall Edwards-FitzSimons, The University of Sydney Mouna Elmir,  University of Sydney Achini Imesha Munasinghe Vitanege, Swinburne Online Emma Rayward, Western Sydney University Felicity Royds, Monash Robert Brennan, University of Sydney Adam Brown, Mt Maria College Mitchelton Emma Ismawi, Collarts Wahib Ali, RMIT University Charlotte Mertens, University of Melbourne Lisa L. Wynn, Macquarie University Cyma Hibri, The University of Sydney Tony Williams, Monash University Rawah, Independent Karla Elliott, Monash University Joe Hughes, University of Melbourne Yung En Chee, University of Melbourne Mykaela Saunders, The University of Sydney Lysander Wilkins, RMIT Ben Howard,  Southern Cross University Lydia Mardirian, University of Melbourne Richard S. Lyons, YAQUI Tribe Siti Nur Hidayah, University of South Australia Nadeem Memon, University of South Australia Berhan M Ahmed, The university of Melbourne Ramila Chanisheff, University of South Australia Imad Mustafa, Iwaa aged care Husnia Underabi,  Western Sydney University Arzu Yilmaz, Your Community Health Sven Schottmann, Griffith University Ania Anderst, The George Institute for Global Health Alanna Kamp, Western Sydney University Karen Burd,  Griffith University Mokh. Arif Bakhtiyar, Curtin University Taelah Daley, UOW Jane Brophy, University of Melbourne Siti Rohmanatin Fitriani, University of South Australia Sky Croeser, Curtin University Lara Fielding, University of Melbourne Sujatha Fernandes, University of Sydney Annie Werner,  University of Wollongong Pekeri Ruska, RMIT Maria Ishaq Bhatti, Western Sydney University Tartila, Murdoch university Sabrina Islam, University of Melbourne Rebecca Scott Bray,  The University of Sydney Naama Blatman, The University of Sydney Fuad Fudiyartanto,  University of South Australia Paul Kelaita, University of Sydney Liz Conor, La Trobe University Merve Onder, ICMG Kazi S Rashid, Western Sydney University Anna Dunn, University of Sydney Jeremy George,  The University of Melbourne Fahim said Hashimy, University of South Australia Sherine Al Shallah,  University of New South Wales Rhonda Itaoui, Western Sydney University Noam Peleg, University of New South Wales Abdul Rahman, University of South Australia Suleyman Sertkaya, Charles Sturt University Aisya,  University of Queensland Mostafa El-Gashingi, Charles Sturt University Christine Hatton, Newcastle University Elliot Dolan-Evans, Monash University Paul Russell, Victoria University Geoffrey Mead, The University of Melbourne Elizabeth Dowding, UNSW Brett Woods, Victoria University Cat Hope, Monash University Sam Coulter, Griffith University Helen Keane, Australian National University David Carter, University of Queensland Niro Kandasamy, Australian Catholic University Amy Thomas, UTS Liam o’sullivan, Griffith University Effie Sfrantzis, Indepdendent Charlotte Epstein, The University of Sydney Mary Lou Rasmussen, ANU Aisha Ismail, Monash University Daud Batchelor, Australasian Muslim Times Alison Holland, Macquarie university Elias Nasser, University of Wollongong Jake Lynch, University of Sydney Cut Dhia Fadhilah, University of South Australia Ann El Khoury, University of Sydney Mark Bahnisch, Intercultural Communication Australia Kate Clayton, La Trobe University Michael Clarke, Australian National University Alexis Bergantz, RMIT Daphne Arapakis, The University of Melbourne Janelle Low, RMIT Tinonee Pym, Swinburne University of Technology Amin Rahman, BUET Megan Tighe, University of Tasmania Jasmine Westendorf, La Trobe University Karen Crawley, Griffith University Muhammad Mus’ab Yusof, ANU Kareem Akila, ANU Deborah Cleland, ANU Sahiba Maqbool, La Trobe Law School Tulsi Achia, University of Queensland Cheuk Yui Kwong, Australian National University Mandy Truong, Monash University Mathew Marques, La Trobe University David Au, Victoria University Michelle Ryan, Australian Naional University Ayema Samnakay Chad Toprak, RMIT University Patrick Thomsen,  Griffith University Brian p Brophy, University of Adelaide Nadeen Madkour, University of New South Wales Anastasia Gramatakos, University of Melbourne Edward Clarke, Federation University Australia Poppy de Souza, Griffith University and University of New South Wales Jacob Ian Forsyth, Western Sydney University Winnifred Louis, University of Queensland Kathy Bowrey, University of New South Wales Micah Goldwater, University of Sydney Simon Farley, University of Melbourne Paul Byron, UTS Shaazia Esat, Murdoch University Connie Musolino, Flinders University Lana Laham, Victoria University Kirk Graham, UQ Hafsa Pirzada,  Griffith University Zelmarie Cantillon, Western Sydney University Darren Austin, La Trobe University Maria Elander, La Trobe University Jessica Gerrard, University of Melbourne Teresa Jopson, Australian National University Louise Olliff, University of Melbourne and Western Sydney University Jan Breckenridge, UNSW Reema Alqassem, Monash University Adrian Farrugia, La Trobe University Elene Papazoglou, RMIT University Sarah Maddison, University of Melbourne Mia Martin Hobbs, University of Melbourne Gabrielle Appleby, UNSW Sianan Healy, La Trobe University Naser Alziyadat, Murdoch University Eden Bywater, University of Queensland Sonia Qadir,  UNSW Sydney Kyle Smith, Queensland University of Technology Bonnie Evans, University of Queensland Angela Smith, UNSW Anita Trezona, Deakin University Christopher Teuma Tash Reynolds, University of Adelaide Mark Clayton, University of Queensland Sharon Honeywood,  Sydney university Katimarie Finn, La Trobe University Alice Gorman, Flinders University Rawan abuyosef,  UQ Emma Green, University of Technology Sydney Evan Lawless, Curtin University Felicity Castagna, Western Sydney University Rajni Gamage, University of Queensland Cormac Opdebeeck, Wilson University of Queensland Eloise Rapp, UNSW Mel Robinson, Griffith University Hasan, Curtin University Ruth De Souza, RMIT University Muhammad Ibrahim Shaikh, ANU Hafsa Pirzada,  Griffith University Rerose Roro, Monash University Halima Goss, Griffith University Sidrah Samnakay, University of Western Australia Jane Haggis, Flinders University Alison Pullen,  Macquarie University Richard Joyce, Monash University Daniel Palmer, RMIT 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https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSep-53T7zOx701uprVqIU34ota9cBiiz1OL0cB11kgjihOaeg/viewform

Australian Academics Open Letter in Solidarity with Palestine and Call for Action

As scholars, academics and students in Australia, a settler colony built on the dispossession of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples, we stand in solidarity with Palestinians in their struggle for liberation and against Israeli settler colonialism. In the past month, Palestinians have faced brutal Israeli settler colonial violence in the Sheikh Jarrah neighbourhood of East Jerusalem and al-Aqsa mosque, the West Bank, Gaza, and in Palestinian cities and towns in Israel.  This violence is rooted in a century of colonisation and Palestinian dispossession.

Israel has declared a war on Palestinians. We have seen worshipers attacked in al-Aqsa mosque during the holy month of Ramadan, families facing the threat of forced removal from their homes, protestors shot and tear gassed, Israeli security forces and Israeli-Jewish mobs attacking Palestinians in Lydda, Jaffa and Haifa. We have witnessed massacres in Gaza, with entire families obliterated.

Israel’s actions are in violation of international law. East Jerusalem, the West Bank, and Gaza are considered occupied under international law and Israel is responsible to guarantee Palestinian residents of these territories special protection. Instead, Israel is confiscating Palestinian land and homes, committing ethnic cleansing, and engaging in war crimes and grave breaches of the Geneva Convention. The recent report of Human Rights Watch has concluded that Israeli actions towards Palestinians in territories it controls, from both sides of the Green Line, amount “to the crimes against humanity of apartheid and persecution.”

The shelling of Gaza from air, sea and land; the mob violence enacted against Palestinians within Israel; and Israeli military and settler violence against Palestinians in the West Bank and East Jerusalem should not go unanswered by the international community. While ceasefire with Hamas in Gaza has been declared, we remind the world that Palestinians across all historic Palestine continue to be subject to Israeli colonisation, apartheid and occupation.

Silence is not an option.

We call on the Australian government to condemn the state of Israel and its actions, and re-evaluate its current and proposed trade agreements. We also call on the Australian government to suspend its defence cooperation with Israel and halt acquisitions of Israeli military equipment. As scholars, academics and students committed to decolonising knowledge, it is our responsibility to speak up and stand with Palestinians against the forces of colonialism, injustice and inequality and for an immediate cessation of Israeli violence in all its forms.

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https://plus61j.net.au/latest-news/melbourne-university-student-union-rescinds-israel-boycott-motion/Melbourne University student union rescinds Israel boycott motion

By Deborah Stone

May 27, 2022

Melbourne University students have rescinded a motion calling for Boycotts, Divestments and Sanctions (BDS) against Israel

The University of Melbourne Student Union (UMSU) has voted to rescind the motion it passed on April 29 following complaints it was antisemitic and caused Jewish students to feel unsafe on campus.

The motion entitled “UMSU stands with Palestine – BDS and Student Policy” condemned Zionism as a “racist, colonial ideology” and called for the University to cut ties with Israel and divest from companies associated with Israel.

The resolution was followed by a similar resolution attacking Israel passed by the Sydney University Students’ Representative Council and a resolution in support by student at the Australian National University.

But it was condemned by the University of Melbourne, which described it as antisemitic.

The decision to rescind the motion comes after extensive meetings between the Australian Union of Jewish Students (AUJS) and UMSU and after a legal action launched by Melbourne University student Justin Riazaty against UMSU for racial discrimination.

AUJS welcomed the decision to rescind the motion and released a statement asking that Jewish students be consulted on motions that affect them.

“AUJS calls on UMSU and other student unions to ensure that unions represent the viewpoints of all students. Universities and their student representative bodies should be places for well-informed, nuanced and open dialogue rather than hectoring polemics.

“The original UMSU motion was put forward over the objections of Jewish students. UMSU attempted to define Judaism, Zionism and antisemitism in a way that solely reflects the views of a fringe group of Israel-haters but bears no relationship to the lived experience of the Jewish people.

“We simply ask that student unions consult AUJS and relevant Jewish bodies on campus before putting forward motions impacting Jewish students on campus.”

The decision to revoke the motion was condemned by many students at the meeting. Palestinian advocate Fahad Ali wrote on Twitter, “UMSU has just voted to rescind a motion in solidarity with Palestine, following a legal threat from a Young Liberal. This sets a dangerous precedent by validating lawfare tactics against student organisations, and leaves UMSU open to legal attack in the future. 

“One can conceive of a situation where any ideological group — TERFs, homophobes, white nationalists, etc. — can sue UMSU in response to any motion they don’t like. By taking this decision today, UMSU has given those groups a green light. 

Ali reported the UMSU was considering passing an amended motion in supported of Palestine.


Deborah Stone is Editor-in Chief of Plus61J. She has more than 30 years experience as a journalist and editor, including experience as a reporter and feature writer on The Age, and as editor of the Australian Jewish News and ArtsHub.

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