Sunday, December 9, 2012

The Prisoner of Zion

Two items appearing recently in the print media speak to the peculiar rigidity of the Prime Minister, Julia Gillard, when it comes to the Middle East conflict, the second, significantly, composed (or approved) by Gillard herself exclusively for inclusion in the Australian Jewish News:

"Even if Gillard's forced capitulation on the UN vote on Palestine does not change votes in caucus, it will go down as a seminal episode in her prime ministership. Sources describe the cabinet discussion on the Monday night, when 10 of her cabinet ministers spoke against her position of a no vote against Palestine, as respectful. They were gobsmacked when at the end of it Gillard summed up by telling them that even though what they said was fair enough, this was not an issue for cabinet to decide, it was a question of prime ministerial prerogative. She told them she would exercise that prerogative to deliver Australia's vote against Palestine. Ministers were appalled, first, because she had failed to listen; second, that she was seemingly oblivious to the danger she faced; and, third, that there was only one view that mattered: hers." (PM's Praetorian Guards are revolting, Niki Savva, The Australian, 6/12/12)

"It's widely known that the debate within the Labor Party on how Australia should vote was a vigorous one - befitting the significance of the issue pending before the world. But it is important to distinguish between what was debated within the Labor Party and what is always accepted without debate. I am proud of my party's historic friendship with Israel. Nothing will ever change that and we will be proud and firm friends of Israel in the future." ('Our friendship with Israel is beyond debate', Julia Gillard, AJN, 7/12/12)

Is this not one of the great mysteries of Australian political life? Here is the leader of a party that has jettisoned just about every conceivable principle it ever stood for, to the extent that no one knows anymore quite what it stands for, telling two in-group audiences - not the rest of us note - that a supposed friendship with a foreign power, and not just any foreign power but a vicious, occupying apartheid state, is beyond debate.

Why this extraordinary degree of dogma, reminiscent of nothing so much as the doctrine of papal infallibility, this adamantine refusal to openly debate without fear or favour? Did Gillard climb into this ideological straitjacket unaided? What is the nature of its ties and clasps that none of our so-called intellectuals dare mention? Where is Australia's John Mearsheimer and Stephen Walt?

4 comments:

Kevin Cohen said...

Perhaps she, like many of us without an anti Israel agenda, does not share your inaccurate and biased view?

MERC said...

Hey Kev, cite one inaccuracy - just one - if you don't mind.

Peter D said...

Someone has been leaving me a copy of the Daily Telegraph now and then lately. On Wednesday this week Simon Benson was back at it, on page 4 ("ALP CARR CRASH"), with an article introducing - bolstering - an opinion piece by Michael Danby on p.25, back side of the editorial page of the same issue, castigating Bob Carr for undermining - nay, betraying - Gillard's leadership on the UN vote.

They should give Danby a greater platform - the whole world would sooner discover he's a complete knucklehead.

P.S. Merc, there's no need to publish any comments I make here. As you see fit - I won't mind.

MERC said...

Peter, Your comments are always so rational and to the point, unlike so many I get from the usual suspects, many of which I'm forced to delete as crimes against reason, that it'd be yet another crime against reason not to run them.

The Zionisation of the Daily Telegraph, like that of the NSW Government, is an interesting new development. Obviously, no stones are being left unturned in a concerted campaign to keep the wool pulled down over people's eyes, even those who formerly wouldn't have mattered in the scheme of things, the readers of the DT. What a sign of desperation.

Re Danby, I've sometimes thought he should form a new party with his offsider, Mike Kelly. I'd love to see them turn up at the next federal election under an honest party label. The Zionist Brotherhood would be be good.