Why is this vile Jew-hater allowed to inject his poison into the heads of gullible young students?
A Sydney University spokeswoman said in a statement last night: “The University is deeply concerned about events surrounding a protest on campus and has commenced an investigation into the incidents.”
Further from Gerard Henderson. ( by Tim Blair)
Radical tolerance for the Left but intolerance towards conservatives
THE intolerant Left was at it again on Wednesday, this time at the taxpayer-subsidised University of Sydney where a group of demonstrators attempted to disrupt a lunchtime lecture by Richard Kemp on ethical dilemmas of military tactics.
Kemp, a retired British military officer and security consultant, is a former commander of British armed forces in Iraq and Afghanistan. He was the subject of a tough but fair interview by Fran Kelly on Radio National Breakfast on Wednesday before proceeding to Sydney University for a public event hosted by a couple of academics.
During his Radio National interview, Kemp supported the tactics used by the Israel Defence Forces in its recent war with Hamas-led Gaza.
Kemp’s point was that, by placing its rocket launchers and building its attack tunnels in heavily populated areas, Hamas essentially used the citizens of Gaza as human shields. Consequently, the legitimate actions of the IDF, in stopping the rockets and destroying the attack tunnels, inevitably would have the unintended consequence of killing and injuring civilians.
This was a tough-minded but valid point. No democratically elected government — whether based in London, Paris, Washington or Canberra — would do nothing while a declared enemy across a border fired rockets and planned military raids aimed at killing and kidnapping. Why should the democratically elected leaders of Israel be expected to act differently?
According to the report by Glen Falkenstein on the J-Wire website, Kemp had covered only non-state militant groups in Ireland and Afghanistan when a small group of demonstrators entered the lecture theatre. As is common with the extremes of Left and Right, demonstrators prefer slogans to argument. So this lot chanted in unison: “Richard Kemp / You can’t hide / You support genocide.”
Of course, Kemp has never advocated genocide. And he was not trying to hide. To the radical Left, however, such facts are of no moment. After all, “hide” rhymes with “genocide” and there was a lecture to disrupt.
A demonstrator, equipped with a megaphone, drowned out Kemp and the academic moderator.
Enter Jake Lynch, director of Sydney University’s Centre for Peace and Conflict Studies. He happens to be one of the leading activists in the Australian chapter of the boycott, divestment and sanctions campaign aimed at disabling the Israeli economy. Lynch was present in the audience when the attempted disruption began.
On Thursday, I engaged in correspondence with Lynch and he provided me with some brief iPhone videos of the occasion, which he had filmed. The footage indicates that protesters physically resisted attempts by security to remove them.
Lynch’s iPhone video indicates that a middle-aged woman threw water at some demonstrators. A still photo of the occasion shows Lynch thrusting a $5 note in the face of a person he called the “older lady”.
Lynch advised me that he did this to warn the woman in question that he “would have no option but to sue her for assault if she carried on — which would cost her a lot of money”.
This seems highly unprofessional behaviour on the part of one of Sydney University’s associate professors with respect to a member of the public visiting the campus.
You wonder what the vice-chancellor thinks about such action on the part of one of his senior academics.
In the event, Lynch’s legal threat was of no moment.
As Lynch conceded in his correspondence with me, he “emerged without injury” from the occasion.
But not without involvement. Lynch did not object to the attempt by the left-wing radicals to disrupt Kemp’s address.
In Lynch’s words: “I took a seat at the meeting, and left it only to remonstrate with University security guards when they used force to eject the demonstrators.”
In other words, Lynch’s position is that the demonstrators should have been allowed to prevent Kemp from speaking. According to Lynch, “The security guards’ sole remit in such circumstances should be to prevent harm being done.”
I asked Lynch whether he would accept protesters attempting to disrupt speeches at his Centre for Peace and Conflict Studies by opponents of Israel such as John Pilger and Hanan Ashrawi.
His response was the familiar “that’s different” argument.
Lynch wrote to me as follows: “I would dispute the parallel with John Pilger or Hanan Ashrawi. I have never heard either of them deliver a speech that was disingenuous or deceitful in the way of the remarks by Colonel Kemp.”
This rationalisation of intolerance overlooks the fact Kemp’s speech was disrupted before he even discussed Israel or the Hamas Islamists who run Gaza.
Lynch uses his influence to run campaigns against Israel. He is the poster-boy for the Left’s dominance of so many social science departments at so many Australian universities.
Born in 1965 to members of the British Communist Party, Lynch joined the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament when the middle-class radicals who comprised the CND believed the West should disarm.
This would have left the communist dictatorship in Moscow victorious in the Cold War.
As Lynch revealed in an ABC Classic FM interview with Margaret Throsby in April 2009, he criticises all Western leaders, but always from the Left. His targets include Barack Obama, Gordon Brown and Kevin Rudd, in addition to political conservatives.
The evidence suggests that what takes place at Lynch’s centre is little more than a left-wing stack. He believes that anti-Israel demonstrators have a right to disrupt lectures provided no physical harm is caused, but does not advocate such behaviour for his own functions.
This is a manifestation of what left-wing Marxist philosopher Herbert Marcuse once advocated. Marcuse called for tolerance for the Left but “intolerance towards the self-styled conservatives”.
It’s unlikely that the student demonstrators today have heard of Marcuse, but they practise his teachings, nevertheless.
Gerard Henderson is executive director of the Sydney Institute.
His Media Watch Dog blog can be found at theaustralian.com.au
For the first time ever in the history of Jewish life in Australia we’re now facing the worst climate of Jew hatred this country has ever seen.
In 1788 eight Jews arrived on the first fleet. By 1848 there were over 1000 Jews living in Australia.
We love this country. The Australian spirit rests deep in our souls. Our contributions to this country are on record and are significant. From Sir John Monash to Jimmy Barnes, Jews have been and will always remain proud Australians.
We have earned the right to demand protection not only from our government but also from our community leaders. Letters of condemnation have out lived their usefulness, the time for action is now. Jews should never feel or be threatened, least of all in so called “higher learning” institutions such as universities.
Unfortunately some of our compatriots have missed the point. Despite Australia’s geographical isolation from the rest of the world, some Australians have decided to transplant the very thing that made so many people leave their home countries and move to Australia in the first place.
Foreign ancient ethnic conflicts.
This has no place in Australia.
To see a university lecturer display the worst type of anti-Semitism in front of a mob of his students, with the sole purpose of agitating, provoking and humiliating provides us with the explanation of why so many university students have decided to make the Israel Palestinian conflict their own personal Vietnam where otherwise there would be no need to make the issue their own.
Purely and simply these young impressionable minds are being marinated in falsehoods, lies, prejudice and bigotry.
The peaceful heart, spirit and attitude of the Jewish people is our greatest attribute yet it is also our greatest weakness. This weakness is being exploited by bullies.
We are calling upon the entire Australian Jewish community to now unite & stand up and say with a strong voice that this will not be tolerated. We will not have the intolerance and violence that is currently on display all around the world replicated in Australia.
We also call upon those in the broader Australian community who are seeing the contributions that we have made to this country, who join us in our moral disgust at what our country is becoming and value peace decency and respect, to unite with us.
We must not let Australia become just another country that accepts as commonplace racism, violence and intolerance towards Jews.
It’s that simple.