How Trump’s far-right politics could reach Australian shores — thanks to Israeli influence
Right now Malcolm Turnbull is schmoozing with the most right wing leader Israel has ever had, Bibi Netanyahu, to celebrate a victory for a one hundred year old war that we had no business fighting.
And three days ago it was announced that Australia signed a multi-billion dollar deal with Rafael, an Israeli arms company.
This past month police dressed a terrorist in a keffiyeh, the Palestinian scarf shown below, as a prop for a police drill.
The timing of these incidents couldn’t be more connected.
The Israelis are giving us the training manuals, and so we are being taught Israeli propaganda; that a keffiyeh is a symbol of terrorism.
But actually the Australian Federal Police had slurred the iconic scarf and national symbol of the Palestinian people.
When I was younger I was taught that the people who wore keffiyehs supported Hamas.
Now that the time from Bush’s War On Terror is over we are able to look back and reflect. Our TVs would often show Arab protestors shooting at the sky to celebrate war, and peace, and marriages and more. This was shown as a sign that whatever it was, the only thing Arabs desired was war.
But no, the West misunderstands Arab culture. Arabs are into their guns and they shoot in the sky to make loud statements of celebration, or mourning, or anything in between.
The Arab tradition of shooting in the sky only means a loud statement, it does not especially mean a desire for war.
It’s wrong for us to appropriate the meaning of the shooting for racist means, and it’s wrong to do it for the keffiyeh.
But now the Australian government has just signed a multi-billion dollar arms deal with Israeli company Rafael. It’s obvious where our misunderstanding of the keffiyeh comes from.
Our political compass is becoming increasingly polarised suddenly. Donald Trump and Bibi Netanyahu is the American dog wagging an Israeli tail, and now Malcolm Turnbull and Theresa May are deciding that they want to play that game.
Malcolm Turnbull’s away on leave in Israel while buying weapons there, meanwhile here in Australia, he’s caving to the far-right of our country. He has committed 600 asylum seekers at Manus Island to a likely death by leaving them alone with no food, money, electricity, or shelter.
It’s no surprise that Turnbull would do something erratic like this. The immigration minister Peter Dutton and a factional powerhouse of the right faction of the Liberal party. Some hot-button issue has got to simultaneously keep Dutton busy and warm Turnbull’s throne while he’s away on business.
Do not think that it is impossible for Australia to be hit by the populist tsunami from the far-right. Australians have told me that we are just better than that; we wont get caught up in this wave of far-right politics; but that’s the exact assumption that caught the USA offguard. Making that assumption is what we should really be better than. It means we will let our gaze down and we could be caught offguard again.
Usually the Israel tail is wagged by an American dog. But Bibi Netanyahu is strong, and he knows how to wag the dog from his tail. It’s not natural for the relationship, it’s a reversal. Bibi has spents years laying the foundations for race-bait fearmongering while Donald Trump still needs to learn to refine his craft.
Malcolm Turnbull and Peter Dutton are coming to the dog park to play.
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