Lavinia Moore(SA) congratulates Senator Doug Cameron on his speech re Palestine in the Australian Parliament 10Feb11 February 11, 2011

Senator Cameron,
Australian Parliament

Dear sir,

Firstly I wish to commend you for your courage in raising the issue of the plight of Palestinians in our Federal Parliament. I say courage because in the past, successive governments and elected representatives from both major parties have assiduously avoided the topic.

Given that international law, UN resolutions and conventions, and universally accepted standards of human decency, justice and equality for all clearly state principles and decisions that would be consistent with any statement by states or their leaders that acknowledge that Palestinians have suffered and continue to suffer, and that they support the need to rectify the situation, one has to seek elsewhere for reasons that would explain why so few have chosen to do just that.

It cannot be because the Palestinians have not been treated unjustly.
It cannot be because their land is not occupied.
It cannot be because they are not constrained and oppressed and have been for over sixty years.
It cannot be because their children, mothers, fathers, are not being killed.
It cannot be because they are not imprisoned, tortured and assassinated.
It cannot be because on top of the occupation and suppression they have not also felt the full force of a mighty military attack.

Reasons far less than this have caused previous leaders of this country to send our sons and husbands and fathers to fight to rectify a perceived wrong against many other peoples.
So why the silence?
Why so few voices of support?

The only reason I can think of is that those who choose to keep silent do so because they are afraid to speak out. And that can be for only two reasons. One is that they fear being attacked for speaking the truth about the situation that Palestinians find themselves in.
The other is that they fear having to face their complicity in the oppression of the Palestinians. Guilt often stirs vehement responses when confronted.

So what made you speak out? That is something I do not know.
But speak out you did. And in our parliament. That same parliament that refused to acknowledge the NAKBA. The same parliament that readily celebrated the establishment of the state of Israel.
So I wanted to say well done.
And thanks.

I am not Palestinian but I count many among my friends. And I am sure that they too will be glad that you have raised this issue. It’s a beginning. I hope that others will choose to follow up on the issue, and that one day we will see an Australian parliament passing resolutions that acknowledge the truth of what has happened and is happening  to the Palestinians.


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