"A group of non-Jewish student leaders had a transformative experience during a recent visit to Israel as part of the Australia/Israel & Jewish Affairs Council's (AIJAC) Rambam Fellowship Program. The 3 Young Labor members and 3 Young Liberals spent a week travelling through the country and the West Bank, meeting with prominent Israeli commentators, as well as representatives from the Palestinian Authority."
Hm... I bet these bright young things, aflame with a longing for Truth, Justice and the LibLab Way, were put right by those PA "representatives."
Er... maybe not:
"Mikaela Wangmann, national women's officer of the National Union of Students, said, 'The experience has made me a lifetime defender of the State of Israel - not in the knee-jerk, geopolitical sense but in the way you would defend any people who are just trying to build for themselves a better world' [while] Australian Liberal Students' Federation president Christian Street said that he feels 'far more able to talk to people about Israel with confidence now that I have some practical experience of the issues at play, the trip was worth it for that alone'."
And the point is?
"AIJAC executive director Dr Colin Rubenstein said the program helped foster 'an informed and constructive awareness of Israeli/Palestinian issues among some of Australia's future leaders'." (Future in their hands, The Australian Jewish News, 27/9/13)
Well, he would say that, wouldn't he?
So this lot are Australia's future leaders, eh?
OK, then, maybe we should know a little more about them:
1) According to Tharunka (1/59 2013), our NUS women's officer, Mikaela Wangmann (Adelaide Uni), belongs to the "hard-line Christian social conservative faction of the ALP, the Shop, Distributive & Allied Employees Association (SDA)."
Now whether that means you get a Bible with every purchase I'm not quite sure, but whatever it means, it sounds as if young Mikaela's going places, and soon. Just think, with Israel as the wind beneath her wings, young Mikaela could turn out to be the next Julia Gillard!
In the event, I thought it might be useful to draw your attention to the following paragraph from a recent thought bubble of hers, which not only casts light on the workings of her mind, but the felicities of her prose style as well :
"Of the forty people who have been featured on Australian money only 10 have been women, while I acknowledge that it is better than I though it would be its still bullshit! Money which is one of the things we value most in our society, and having your face brandished across it is one of the greatest honors that can be bestowed features thirty men and ten women. TEN." (10 out of 40, 'aint bad? Wait., nuswomens.wordpress.com, 5/6/13)
2) Todd Pinkerton, NUS General Secretary, apparently belongs to the Labor faction 'Student Unity'. Now I couldn't find much on this bloke, but, hey, isn't this retweet interesting?
"IDF ?@IDFSpokesperson 22 Jul NEWS: The truth is spreading. Today, the EU joined the US, UK and others to label Hezbollah as a terrorist organization Retweeted by Todd Pinkerton."
(Parenthetically, I can't for the life of me understand why, but this rant of George Carlin's has suddenly popped into my head and I can't get the damn thing out - short of putting it down here that is. So here goes: "And I'm getting really sick of guys named Todd. You know? Yeah, it's just a goofy... it's a goofy fucking name, OK? Hi, what's your name? 'Todd! I'm Todd. And this is Blake and Blair and Blaine and Brent.' Where are all these goofy fucking boys' names coming from? Taylor, Tyler, Jordan, Flynn. These are not real names! You want to hear a real name? Eddie. Eddie is a real name. Whatever happened to Eddie? He was here a minute ago. Joey and Jackie and Bobby and Phil. Bobby and Tommy and Danny and Bill. What happened? *Todd* And Cody, and Dylan, and Cameron, and Tucker. 'Hi, Tucker. I'm Todd.' 'Hi, Todd! I'm Tucker' Fuck Tucker; Tucker sucks. And fuck Tucker's friend, Kyle. You know? Yeah. There's another soft name for a boy. Kyle. Soft names make soft people. I'll bet you anything that ten times out of ten, Nicky, Vinny and Tony will beat the shit out of Todd, Kyle and Tucker." Such a relief getting that off my chest, I can tell you.)
3) "The liberal hard right at UNSW is run by Nik Kaurin, formerly a staffer to NSW MLC David Clarke and now working for senator Concetta Fierravanti-Wells." (Honi Soit, 2/10/12)
4) Phoebe Drake, Labor, is President of Sydney Uni's SRC. There's not much to report here, folks, except to note that over at her twitter account Phoebe describes herself as a "Lover of chocolate, coffee... and a good book."
I'm thinking, shouldn't that now be amended to 'Lover of chocolate and coffee - Max Brenner, of course! - and a good book... by Leon Uris'?
5) Christian Street, Liberal from Melbourne Uni. Not much on this bloke out there in cyberspace, but in case any of you out there in realspace ever find yourselves buttonholed by a young man confidently banging on about Israel somewhere within cooee of Melbourne U, and he terminates the convo with an abrupt 'Anyways, I was there, so there!', it'll probably be Christian, OK?
6) On Jessica Wilson, the third Lib, I drew a complete blank, but as serendipity would have it, I did come across a certain Jess Wilson, an American currently living in Beersheva, Israel. Curious, I began trawling through her tweets when, lo and behold, I struck gold, or, more accurately, fool's gold. Now I've read some pretty mind-blowing takes on Palestine/Israel before, but this particular tweeted take... takes the cake:
"Israel is like STOP TOUCHING ME and Palestine is like YOU'RE TOUCHING ME and Hillary is like I WILL PULL THIS CAR OVER."
Like, I haven't read anything quite as, like, memorably moronic since, like, rambammed NSW MLC Peter Phelps tweeted from, like, Sderot on his last rambam: "Just peered into Gaza - now I know how Frodo felt when he first gazed upon Mordor."