ECAJ Responds to Rhiannon

November 8, 2011 by  
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Greens NSW Senator Lee Rhiannon has issued a statement calling on the Israeli government “to immediately release Michael Coleman”, an Australian member of the Freedom Waves to Gaza Flotilla, who has been arrested by the Israeli Defence Force…a statement that has met with a sharp response from The Executive Council of Australian Jewry.

Senator Lee Rhiannon

In her statement, Senator Rhiannon said: “I have also asked the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade to work hard to ensure Mr Coleman is safe and is released without delay,” Senator Rhiannon said.   “It is the Israeli Defence Forces that have acted illegally as the boat Mr Coleman and other Freedom Waves participants were on was in international waters when intercepted.”

Senator Rhiannon added: “The United Nations Human Rights Council Inquiry Report of September 2010 found that the Israeli blockade of Gaza is illegal.  It is time to end it once and for all”.

Dr Danny Lamm

The President of the ECAJ, Dr Danny Lamm, issued Rhiannon with a stinging rebuke.  “As usual when it comes to Israel, Senator Rhiannon has blundered badly.  She is wrong on the facts and wrong on the law.   There is not a skerrick of evidence that Michael Coleman is in any danger, as she has implied.” Dr Lamm said.

“Senator Rhiannon’s characterisation of the blockade of Gaza and the boarding of vessels that are used to break the blockade as “illegal” is mendacious nonsense, as will be immediately understood by anyone who has read the Palmer Report.  Unlike Senator Rhiannon, Sir Geoffrey Palmer of New Zealand, is an expert in international maritime law.” Dr Lamm said.  “Palmer and other legal experts, Alvaro Uribe (Colombia), Joseph Ciechanover Itzhar (Israel) and Süleyman Özdem Sanberk (Turkey), investigated this issue earlier in the year.  They concluded that Israel’s naval blockade of Gaza is legal, describing it as a legitimate security measure in response to the real threat posed by terrorists in Gaza.”

“The experts also concluded that ships that are being used for the purpose of breaking the blockade may lawfully be boarded and commandeered by Israeli forces, even in international waters.” Dr Lamm added.

“It is ludicrous to suggest that this latest attempt to break the blockade is necessary to bring medical supplies to Gaza”, Dr Lamm stated.   “More than 30,000 tons of supplies are transported into Gaza from Israel every week, including at least 5 truckloads of medical supplies.  The people who want to break the blockade are not interested in providing humanitarian assistance to the Palestinians.  If that was their fundamental aim, they could send their supplies in by land via Israel.  Their main purpose is to harm Israel and her people”, Dr Lamm concluded.


16 Responses to “ECAJ Responds to Rhiannon”
  1. Bubbie says:

    A really good answer, full of roatinlaity!

  2. Otto Waldmann says:

    I am compelled to make constant reference to the said TV interview given by Coleman prior to being detained by the IDF. In it, the now media attention seeker/receiver, in some 27 seconds, was giving a list of at least o dozen criminal features of Israel’s policies. I, once again, wonder : If you knew what bastards the Israelis are what posessed you to allow them to enjoy their deviled souls at you expense !!! Or maybe Coleman’s taste for martyrdom could harbour more advanced projects. That in itself is most definitely worth looking into. Israel is doing precisely that ! This also means that if an Australian Jew would be idiotic enough to promote his anti Iranian activism in the same manner Coleman is doing against Israel, he would deserve his chosen fate.

  3. Liat Nagar says:

    Lee Rhiannon’s continual vitriolic campaign against the State of Israel borders on obsession. She’s a poisonous addition to Parliament and doesn’t appear capable of constructive, rigorous intellectual debate. For anyone aware of the history of the Jewish people, she invites foreboding. As for Mr. Coleman being held by the IDF? He did have the option of deportation, which he refused. Is Senator Rhiannon aware of that? The so-called humanitarian flotillas to Gaza are no such thing: their sole aim is to provoke Israel into retaliatory action that will bring further International rebuke and whip up more enmity.

  4. Terry says:

    Let us not forget that rhiannon represents the only western political party I know of that advocates the boycott of Jewish businesses, right here in Australia. There was another western political party that did likewise – the German nazis. And in my view, rhiannon’s antagonism towards Israel is a fig leaf for the very same racist antisemitism that prevailed under her mate, adolph.

    The Liberals brought a motion in the Senate condemning the boycott of Jewish businesses in Asutralia – Brown refused to support it. The entire green party is in bed with rhiannon in its hatred of the Jewish People and the support of terrorism against us. And the human rights industry? Nowhere to be seen.

    As for this coleman character. Release him in gaza and refuse to let him leave via Israel.

  5. Otto Waldmann says:

    I am in a bit of an undecided state. Should the Israelis release Mr. Coleman or keep him as long as it takes to establish how and why this worthy Australian functions the way he does.
    I saw him on the News whre he came out in his full size erratic mode, stating the kind of stuff it seems forms the Foreign Policy of the Aus. Greens. His rants were targetting all of Israel’s criminal features, you know the kind gazans, and why not ALL palestinians are at the receiving end. He tols the world, in a first Mr. Coleman apearance, apart from his immediate family and close friends, whomust have all agreed to “Go, dear Son/friend, put yourself in harm’s way, allow those Jews to tear you apart or maybe just assess your state of mind for free, ‘ cause they seem to be pretty good an that Freudian stuff !!”.
    And here is the crux. Our Israeli experts are trying to eascertain what makes one jump aboard a small vessel well beyond half way around the world and engage in jitters of social conscience for people to whom the name Coleman is just as common as Rhiannon,Bob Brown, Fiona Burns etc. Sitting pretty and for days on end at their favourite caffes in the mild sun of the Mediteranean on the Gaza strip, the locals are puffing on their UN sponsored nargile ( the bottle boiling drugs and releasing fumes which end up in the lungs and cerebral cells ) cheering their Aussie brother, occasionally jumping a few inches in protest when IDF soldiers apprehend the main protagonists.
    So, either we provide a free psycho service to Mr. Colleman, thus doing him a toive or release him into the wilderness of his most definitely unhappy existence.
    I say get rid of the moron and send him back to aunty Lee, also known as Tante Braun who,when accompaniang our very own Ms Porszolt ,both looking for the same freebee Macquarie St. consultation in Judea/Samaria, were deemed beyond repairs and released at once. Meanwhile we are observing the Green Mental Ward in full flight and wonder what keeps them up there so painfully visible.It can only be the hot air. ( and I am very dissapointed that this is the only way I finished it. Far too kindly ! )

  6. ben says:

    So! If an Jewish Australian or Jewish Australian – Israeli is arrested by Iran wouldn’t the ECAJ expect Australian politicians to contact Iran ?

  7. Ben Derusai says:

    I don’t recall Rhiannon getting so fired up about Gilad Shalit’s ‘detention’.

    • ben says:

      Shali is not an Australian citizen and he was a soldier of an occupying army. A legitimate target for capture.

  8. Jack Chrapot says:

    Ben, rest assured that Michael Coleman and the idiots who sailed with him are in greater danger from the missiles being fired by Palestinian terrorists than at the hands of Israeli bureaucrats.

  9. David says:

    Rhiannon is an anti-semitic idiot who gets it wrong every time.

  10. MARK says:

    Tough luck, try invading Irans waters they will hang him from a crane. Or China his kidneys would be sold.

    Stay out of Israeli waters other wise you may get roughed up the poor Baby.

    • ben says:

      Hello Mark you are wrong and in fact. Israel is supposed to have “dis-engaged ” from Gaza. And it boarded the ships in international waters. If iran had done this, Israel and the US would have rolled out the bombers.

  11. ben says:

    Lamm is the one speaking “mendacious nonsence’. Israel had killed members of flotilla earlier. It is supposed to have “dis-engaged” from Gaza. It therefore has no jurisdiction over Gazan territory. The vessels were impounded in International waters – an act of piracy. Lamm deos not state where the legal opinion was obtained and documents.
    Israel controls the borders of gaza and has imposed a blockade, Amensty International, Red Cross and Gush Shalom have recorded the human toll of the blockade. Even if the supplies Lamm claims are being allowed, it is at Israels whims, a violation of human rights of gazans. Unless one wishes to echo Golda Meir and claim that there are no Palestinian people.

    • Jay says:

      Benny,Benny, Oh Benny!

      Senator Rhiannon,has already been proven a fool so I wouldn’t follow her example by speaking up and removing all doubt or do you just love parroting the Big Lie.You’re right Israel unilaterally disengaged” from Gaza in 2005 and Israel’s civilians have been under constant seige from rockets and Terror Attacks ever since. Any country is allowed to defend it;’s borders. Don’t worry the “esteemed” Michael Coleman will be returned momentarlly,well fed and smiling,just like the 1000 Terrorists exchanged for Gilad Shalit who’s obvious condition bears no resemblance and rest assured that Israel will not demand that Australia release 1000+ of their convicted Felons many Murderers and in exchange for Mr Coleman.

      • ben says:

        Hello jay

        Israel controls the borders, air space and coastline of Gaza. The capture of the flotilla ship proves the fiction of disengagement. Hamas had observed an unilateral casefire for 16 months. It called of the ceasefire after the massacre of the Gahliya family by Israel in Gaza.

        I will be more than happy to debate you and show documentary evidence of Israel’s brutality towards Palstinians and gaza in particular.

    • Norman Trubik says:

      THIS WAS NOT Piracy.
      Here are some quotes from the Palmer Report”

      68. Similarly, the European Court of Human Rights has addressed the question in the
      context of law enforcement actions on the high seas. The Court found that the European Convention on Human Rights applied to a Cambodian ship boarded by French forces on the basis that France exercised full and exclusive de facto control over the vessel from the time of its interception so that the applicants were effectively within France’s jurisdiction.232
      A similar finding was reached by the Committee Against Torture when it
      concluded that de facto control over the individuals on a refugee ship in international
      waters triggered Spain’s responsibilities under the Torture Convention.233

      69. In sum, there is a clear tendency in international law supporting an expansive
      view with respect to the applicability of human rights treaties outside the territory of
      States parties to the relevant conventions. What is important is the State’s exercise of
      effective control in a specific situation. This would include the situation of the capture of
      a foreign-flagged vessel on the high seas in the enforcement of a blockade.

      82. The fundamental principle of the freedom of navigation on the high seas is
      subject to only certain limited exceptions under international law. Israel faces a real threat to its security from militant groups in Gaza. The naval blockade was
      imposed as a legitimate security measure in order to prevent weapons from entering Gaza by sea and its implementation complied with the requirements of international law.

      108. On the best view we can form of the matter we believe it was reasonable in the
      circumstances for the Israeli Navy to conclude that the vessels of the flotilla intended to
      proceed to Gaza. That is what they repeatedly said. That intention was consistent with
      an intention to breach the blockade.
      109. For Israel to maintain the blockade it had to be effective, so it must be enforced.
      That is a clear legal requirement for a blockade. Such enforcement may take place on
      the high seas and may be conducted by force if a vessel resists

      72. The blockading power is entitled to board a neutral merchant vessel if there are
      reasonable grounds to suspect that it is breaching a blockade. The blockading power has the right to visit and search the vessel and to capture it if found in breach of a blockade. Breach could occur outside the blockade zone, including on the high seas where there is evidence of the vessel’s intention. If there is clear resistance to the interception orcapture, the blockading power may attack the vessel, after giving a prior warning

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