Ali Kazak (ACT) writes to Australian Post CEO re Australia-Israel joint issue stamps 25Jun13 June 26, 2013


Mr. Ahmed Fahour
Managing Director and CEO,
Australia Post,
GPO Box 1777,
Melbourne Vic 3001
Dear Mr. Fahour,

I am extremely disappointed to learn that Australia Post has produced a joint stamp issue with Israel to commemorate the 1917 Battle of Beersheba in Palestine.  
I would like to draw your kind attention to the following:
– In 1917 the country was Palestine and Israel did not exist.
– The Palestinian people are the ones who fought and died with the Australian and British forces during World War I in Palestine and the battle of Beersheba. Jews did not fight with the Australian forces, they were merely 6.8 per cent of the population in Palestine according to British statistics.
– Until 1948 when the Jewish terrorist groups the Haganah, the Stern gangs and the Irgun attacked Beersheba, expelled the 6,884 inhabitants, usurped all Palestinian Arab homes, commercial buildings and shops and converted Beersheba into a Jewish city, there was not a one single Jew living in Beersheba.
– Israel’s occupation of Beersheba is illegal, since Beersheba is part of the Palestinian state according to the UN Partition of Palestine (UNR 181), and Israel is guilty of murders, ethnic cleansing and gross violations of International law and UN resolutions.
– Australia’s foreign minister, Dr. Herbert Evatt was chairman of the United Nations Special Committee on Palestine (UNSCOP) formed on 15 May 1947, which recommended the partition of Palestine into two states in order to impose the creation of a Jewish state on the Palestinian Arab land. Evatt played a crucial and active role in the United Nations committee to secure a UNSCOP report that supported the partition of Palestine. In his statement to the UNGA, Evatt said ‘The legal basis of Israel was unassailable. It rests on the decision of the general Assembly in 1947 which contemplated the coming into being of the new state and its subsequent recognition as a member of the UN. Moreover, the territorial boundaries of Israel were fixed by the decisions of 1947 and these boundaries must remain until they are altered either by the General Assembly or by the agreement of Israel with the other states and peoples directly concerned’, needless to say that these boundaries were not altered by the General Assembly or by “an agreement with other state and people directly concerned”.
Therefore, I would like to ask you; if Australia Post wants to commemorate the 1917 Battle of Beersheba, why did it not do that jointly with Palestine Post? And why did it not even include Palestine Post in this joint issue?
And why is the Arabic language not included on the stamps since Arabic  was the language of the country at the time, and even today Israel itself recognises Arabic as an official language beside Hebrew?
If Israel has reasons to falsify Palestine’s history as it does, what interest does Australia Post have to participate with Israel in this falsification of history?
By doing so Australia Post has also betrayed and insulted those Australians who died for freedom and fought not to enslave the Palestinian nation.  
One would have thought you of all people should know the history of Palestine, and respect the Arab and Muslim people’s feelings and sensitivity, especially because you are taking a leading role in Australia-Arab relations including the role as Chairman of the Council for Australian-Arab Relations and Australia’s Special Envoy to the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation.
I would like to call on you to correct this by either withdrawing the issued stamps and extend an apology to the Palestinian and Arab people, or find an acceptable way to correct this big mistake.
Looking forward to hearing from you.
Yours sincerely,
Ali Kazak
Former Palestinian ambassador

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