Australian Foreign Minister Penny Wong Tuesday announced that her country will be hardening its stance in favour of the establishment of an Arab state in the ancestral Jewish lands of Samaria and Judea.
According to the Australian ABC, Wong said Canberra aims to “strengthen the government’s objection to settlements by affirming that they are illegal under international law and a significant obstacle to peace.”
“Australia is … returning to the term occupied Palestinian territories and the point I’d make is that it is consistent with UN Security Council resolutions, it is consistent with the approach taken by key partners including the United Kingdom, New Zealand and the European Union,” she said.
“In adopting the term,” Wong added, “we are clarifying that the West Bank, including East Jerusalem and Gaza, were occupied by Israel following the 1967 war and that the occupation continues, and reaffirms our commitment to negotiate a two-state solution in which Israel and a future Palestinian state coexist.”
This decision marks the second major turnaround by the Labor government of Anthony Albanese of the direction Australia had been moving in under previous Liberal Party leaders.
Ten years ago, Foreign Minister Julie Bishop cheered Jewish hearts and infuriated the Palestine Liberation Organisation by positioning her country against the universally-held falsehood that Jewish settlements are illegal under international law.
“I would like to see which international law has declared them illegal,” she said in an interview published in The Times of Israel on January 15, 2014.
Unlike Wong this week, the then foreign minister was factually correct. Despite the incessant clamouring of the majority of world leaders and their media mouthpieces, international law nowhere holds that the construction of Jewish towns and cities in Samaria and Judea is prohibited. Simply repeating something hundreds of thousands of times does not make it true.
Bishop served under the pro-Israel prime minister, Tony Abbott. At that time, together with Canada under the premiership of Christian Stephen Harper, conservative Boris Johnson as the United Kingdom’s Foreign Minister, and in the runup to Donald Trump’s election as president of the United States, Israel was experiencing a somewhat diminishing sense of isolation on the world stage.
During Abbott’s tenure there was a big push towards having Australia recognise Jerusalem as Israel’s capital, with Christians and others circulating and submitting petitions to the federal government in an extraordinary nation-wide effort in that direction.
See related: Israel Can Always Rely on Australia
Hopes were high, with the August 18 election of Scott Morrison as prime minister – and this during the Trump presidency – that the professing Christian would tie his country fast to Israel by making the embassy move.
Instead, Morrison balked at relocating the mission, and took the half-hearted step of recognising “West Jerusalem” only, thereby effectively affirming the division of the city by Israel’s enemies.
Last October, Prime Minister Albanese decided to un-recognise even West Jerusalem as Israel’s capital.
Australia has now fallen back into line with the United Nations, which overwhelmingly supports the division of Israel’s ancestral lands in accordance with its “Two State Solution” for the creation of a new Arab state called Palestine.
The Labor Party’s draft national platform “calls on the Australian government to recognise Palestine as a state” and outlines that it “expects that this issue will be an important priority for the Australian government.”
Along with the United States and other western nations, Australia is pursuing this policy despite knowing full well that the Palestinian Arab leadership in all its forms – from the PLO (which is the Palestinian Authority) to Hamas – is decisively dedicated to Israel’s destruction.
Joel, the Hebrew prophet of old, sounds a dire warning to those nations that maltreat the Jews and divide the land God calls His; which He gave exclusively and forever to them:
“For behold, in those days and at that time, when I bring back the captives of Judah and Jerusalem, I will also gather all nations, and bring them down to the Valley of Jehoshaphat; And I will enter into judgment with them there on account of My people, My heritage Israel, whom they have scattered among the nations; They have also divided up My land…”
“Multitudes, multitudes in the valley of decision! For the day of the Lord is near in the valley of decision. The sun and moon will grow dark, and the stars will diminish their brightness. The Lord also will roar from Zion,and utter His voice from Jerusalem; The heavens and earth will shake; But the Lord will be a shelter for His people, and the strength of the children of Israel.
“So you shall know that I am the Lord your God, dwelling in Zion My holy mountain. Then Jerusalem shall be holy, And no aliens shall ever pass through her again.” (Joel 3:1-2; 14-17)
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