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Saturday, 16 June 2007

Speech by Vic Alhadeff to Marrickville Council

NSW Jewish Board of Deputies Ceo Vic Alhadeff Issued an unsuccessful plea to Marrickville Council Members on Tuesday night to reconsider forming a sister-city relationship with Bethlehem.

Councillor Iskandar, councillors, good evening.

My name is Vic Alhadeff, CEO of the NSW Jewish Board of Deputies. Thank you for the opportunity to address you on the proposal that Marrickville enter a sister-city relationship with Bethlehem, and for a delegation from Bethlehem to visit Marrickville in August.

Profound concerns flow from this proposal:

10 of the 15 seats on Bethlehem Council are controlled by Hamas and allied parties, including Islamic Jihad. (6 Hamas, 1 Islamic Jihad, and 3 Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine – including Mayor Victor Batarseh).

Hamas is part of the Muslim Brotherhood which seeks world Islamic domination. It aims to dominate the Christian peoples of the world, the Jews and all other faiths.

It demands that Israel be destroyed.

If that were not enough, it holds the killing of Jews – not just Israelis, but all Jews - as God's will.

To quote from the Hamas charter:

“The time [of redemption] will not come until Muslims will fight the Jews [and kill them] until the Jews hide behind rocks and trees, which will cry: O Muslim! there is a Jew hiding behind me, come on and kill him!”

Bethlehem Mayor Victor Batarseh – who is due to lead the delegation to Marrickville – said his party “is against the two-state solution acclaimed by the international community.” In other words, he seeks Israel’s destruction.

Before 1991, 70 – 80 percent of Bethlehem was Christian that figure is now less than 15 per cent after a campaign of discrimination against the Christians of the city.

Last month German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier, refused to meet the Mayor of Bethlehem because Bethlehem Council is dominated by Hamas identities.

Given the above, I have three concerns:

1. That a Bethlehem delegation will include Hamas members. This means an international guest could address a public meeting hosted by this council and could call for the destruction of Israel and death to the Jews. Will Marrickville seek an assurance that no Hamas members will be included in a Bethlehem delegation?

2. Funds from this council could end up in Hamas coffers, supporting terrorism. It is not permitted by Australian law to fund a terrorist organization.

3. If Marrickville’s objective is peace and goodwill, would it rather consider a sister-city relationship with the Arab-Israeli city of Neve Shalom, whose raison d'etre is coexistence?

Finally, according to Australian law, Hamas is a terrorist organization. According to Australian law, Islamic Jihad is a terrorist organization. They dominate Bethlehem Council, with which Marrickville is considering a sister-city relationship.


Bagelblogger: Vic Alhadeff in addressing Marrickville council broaches what must be the most controversial of points.

Marrickville councillor Sam Iskandar the chairperson of Tuesday nights meeting stated
“We are not supporting the violence. The idea to educate people about peace and harmony and exchange social experiences,”
If this is so, then why of all the possible cities in the world would you pick a sister city that is so entangled with Hamas and Islamic Jihad? It flies in the face of logic.

The sad reality of the mistreatment of Bethlehem's Christians by Hamas and other Muslim organisations should be a flag of warning regarding Bethlehem Council's desire for 'Peace and Harmony'.

Marrickville council's desire for a sister city arrangement doesn't educate towards Peace and Harmony it simply legitimises the very hatred prevalent in Hamas and that of its majority on the Bethlehem council.

AJN: Speech by Vic Alhadeff to Marrickville Council
AJN: Sydney local council to partner Bethlehem


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