Australia and the Middle East: Origins of Bias Toward Israel

Australia and the Middle East: Origins of Bias Toward Israel

  • 26 November 2006

This lecture reviewed Australia’s Middle East policy and
the changes that have taken place since the country’s days
as a British colony. It explored the issue of Australia’s Jewish
and Arab communities, their participation in the broader
Australian community and their varying influence on
political decision making. It is often asked why the Arab
community is not as active as the Jewish community and
why it has had such little influence on Australian public
opinion and decision-makers.
The speaker explained the differences of the historic
developments and experiences of the Arabs and Jews in
Australia, which allowed the Jews to shape their present
day commitment to their affairs. These include their
organizational skills; their willingness to make financial
investment to promote their interests; the importance they
place on mobilizing their youth by educating them on issues
affecting the Jewish community and by instilling in them
the importance of shouldering responsibilities. They also
understand the importance of public relations and effective
lobbying to influence the society they live in, to both defend
and serve their interests. In contrast, the Arab community is
a newcomer to these countries, and lacks financial capabilities,
in addition to the cultural difference between the two. While
the Jews value investing their resources in public relations and
lobbying, the Arab community is lacking in this culture. Arab
immigrants are now entering a transition era, which may push
them to be self-assured about the fact that they are Australian
citizens and can enjoy full rights of Australian citizenship.

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LECTURER

Sunday 26 November 2006

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Sunday 26 November 2006

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