Antisemitism

Over 600 Australian leaders unite against 482% rise in antisemitism

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Responding to a staggering 482% increase in antisemitic incidents following the October 7 Hamas massacres in Israel, over 600 Australian leaders from diverse sectors signed a public statement denouncing hatred and discrimination on Tuesday.

This large-scale, unprecedented movement has been extensively reported on by The Australian Financial Review and involves both Jewish and non-Jewish leaders, highlighting the significant rise in antisemitism amid the escalating conflict in Gaza. AFR’s front page on Tuesday was dedicated to this initiative, with a lead story titled “Not the Australia I know.”

The statement, which was published in major Australian newspapers, identified a “482% rise in antisemitic incidents [that] has swept Australia’s shores,” calling attention to the offensive language, vandalism, and harassment happening in public places like the Sydney Opera House and Melbourne’s Flinders Street Station.

Australian minorities speak out

The signatories unequivocally stated, “Racism in all its forms is deplorable and abhorrent.”

Diane Smith-Gander, a prominent Australian business leader and advocate for inclusion, stated, “I never imagined an Australia where there would be a need for 600 business and community leaders to call out ugly ideas that are dangerous to our way of life.”

A copy of the Australian newspaper commenting in rising antisemitism in the nation (credit: Courtesy)

Lachlan Murdoch, chairman of Newscorp, an influential global media company, reiterated these sentiments :“When it comes to antisemitism, there is no room for equivocation. There is no fence-sitting. It is our duty to address and tackle it.”

Jamie Garis, managing director of Luminis Partners, emphasized, “Racism is abhorrent in any form but at this time, with an alarming increase in antisemitism, it’s important to call that out specifically as something that cannot and should not be tolerated.”

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Peter Yates, chairman of AIA Australia, reflected on his personal experiences with discrimination, underscoring that “racial intolerance is completely unacceptable.”

Georgina Downer, director of the Menzies Institute, expressed her concerns about the spread of antisemitism, “As Australians who benefit from a tolerant and multicultural society, we must wholeheartedly reject antisemitism in all its forms.”

The movement also addresses educational settings, with Victorian Education Minister Ben Carroll issuing a warning against state school teachers participating in pro-Palestine advocacy, emphasizing the importance of political neutrality in educational institutions.





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