ZFA states its case

October 10, 2013 by Gabsy Debinski
Read on for article

Recently, there have been some accusations flying around about the ZFA, stemming from an advocacy update published last week, and it seems apt to respond.

Gabsy Debinski’s advocacy column

Galus Australis article

Over to Gabsy….

Gabsy Debinski

Gabsy Debinski

My role at the ZFA is to provide food for thought on topical issues as they present themselves in the media and other forums.  In doing so I try to reflect the views of the vast majority of Australian Jewry who identify themselves with Zionism. The bulletin does not purport to speak for each and every member of the community.

The ZFA aims to represent Australia’s Zionist community, and in particular our affiliate organizations. Naturally there is a wide range of opinions within the community on many issues.

Our affiliates range from Australian friends of Likud and Betar, to Ameinu and Friends of Meretz, Habonim Dror and Hashomer Hatzair. The suggestion that the ZFA agenda is set out by kippa wearing men in suits is false and a simple read of the names of its executive proves it. While internally we discuss and consider all viewpoints when it comes to Israel, at the end of the day, we form a consensus view relating to key issues. In regard to the J Street conference, there is clear consensus which includes our affiliates at every point on the political spectrum, that the public support at the conference for a Palestinian right of return is not in tune with the mainstream view of our community. We received vast feedback from our affiliates and the broader community to this effect.

We are proud to have an incredibly strong and diverse Zionist movement in Australia. The ZFA’s objective is to provide as broad a tent as possible so that as many Zionist members of the community can participate in as many of the programs that we and our affiliates operate. However, there will be instances where it’s incumbent on the ZFA, on behalf of its affiliates, to identify and comment on conduct that falls squarely outside the view of the mainstream Zionist community. This is precisely what has occurred.



One Response to “ZFA states its case”
  1. Robin says:

    I am not a member or subscriber of the American organisation J-Street but I don’t like the attempts to demonise it by some Australian communal leaders either. Some in our community may not agree, but J-Street’s stated position on a two state solution and the right of return seems perfectly mainstream to me, in the sense that it is entirely consistent with the views of many thousands of Israelis and with all the terms of the offer that Ehud Olmert made as Prime Minister of Israel in 2008. See the J-Street petition at http://2campaign.org/#petition which supports a two state solution that:
    “◾Bases borders on pre-1967 lines with agreed-upon land swaps and provides robust security guarantees;
    ◾Evacuates settlements outside Israel’s future borders while compensating the estimated one in five settlers who relocate to make peace possible;
    ◾Establishes the Jewish neighborhoods of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel and Palestinian neighborhoods as the capital of the future state of Palestine. Holy sites would be internationally protected and accessible to all; and
    ◾Resolves the Palestinian refugee issue through resettlement in the future Palestine or third countries, compensation and a symbolic level of family reunification in Israel itself.”

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