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Mossad and Our Passports

In the current debate surrounding the Australian passports used in the assassination of Mahmoud al-Mabhouh in Dubai, there are two equally unsound positions.
Firstly, there’s the shrill (if exultant) Anti-Zionist response, that often tips over into outright racism. (see readers comments at the end of the stories)
On the other side, Jewish Australian leadership still hasn’t managed [...]


Winning Friends and Influencing People 3: Anti-Semitism, The Hiatus, and Secret GLBT Business.

I’ve written before about the story of my paternal grandmother’s Holocaust survival. In short, her father, a religious Jew, made friends with the local priest long before the catastrophic events that wiped out Polish Jewry.
As Jews from my family’s village were packed off to the concentration camps, this priest managed to forge papers for my [...]


Oh Dvir! Now It’s Official

Dvir Abramovich was at it again.
Yet another piece about how Jews and the Holocaust don’t get the respect they deserve.
Yet more responses from puzzelled or angry non-Jews.
Yet another attempt by me to demonstrate to non-Jews that Jews who cry wolf regarding anti-Semitism are not representative of the community as a whole.
Even I’m bored…
Or I would [...]


AJN 3 – John Searle: A Very Bizarre Suggestion

John Searle’s commentary on the community survey (AJN 15) is a study in how to say as little as possible in 800 words. One brief section, however, demands attention.
Along with the expected motherhood statements that pepper his piece, Searle also indulges in frantic dissimulation.
To give the appearance of responsive governance, Searle concedes that certain areas [...]


Dvir Abramovich in The Age: No Laughing!

Although Dvir Abramovich’s opinion column in today’s Sunday Age grossly misstates facts and makes various bizarre assertions, I would still like to thank him for the free publicity he has so generously given this blog, through his opinion piece.
Nevertheless, it is only right that [...]


In The AJN – The Community Survey; a Question; and Coming Next

Community Survey
Headed by Andrew Markus, the Australian Centre for Jewish Civilisation at Monash has recently completed a 45 page study on patterns in Australia’s Jewish community.
This week, The AJN published some of the results, and this post will examine some of the more interesting findings:
1) Religious affiliation – As expected, Orthodox Jews are in the [...]


Young Jews, Drugs, and Alcohol

I remember kids with dead eyes and expressionless faces. My words bounced off them – at first – like a tennis ball against a concrete wall.
Even after ten years, I’d panic at every first meeting: how could I ever get through to them?
Not all these kids were regular substance abusers, and they didn’t have appointments [...]


Part Five – Axis of Honour: Dislocation, Family, and Terror

You probably remember the refrain, during the Bush years, that the Islamists objected to our freedoms and our way of life – that this is why America was attacked on September 11.
This is not exactly in the realms of profound analysis, and belonged with Bush’s ill advised response soon after the attacks, that America was [...]


Bren Carlill of AIJAC Responds to Part Two – Axis of Honour

Bren Carlill, responding in comments, to the second in the The Axis series,  makes some very interesting points – not least of which, is that his piece in The Australian was edited so that key information was omitted.
After reading his comment, I think it’s appropriate to retract my implication that he views all Muslims/Arabs as [...]


Part Three – The Axis of Honour: Honour and Shame

Honour and Shame

Parts one and two of this series have focused on how both right- and left-wing ideologies prevent us from understanding terrorism. I’ve mentioned that if we remove ideology from our analyses, we have a much better chance at tackling the issue, both theoretically and practically.
I’ve also suggested, “honour” as one framework that [...]