Comfort to Israel’s enemy

The following letter appears in today’s Australian newspaper:

Geoffrey Brahm Levey (Letters, 14/4) claims he signed the Independent Australian Jewish Voices petition because he supports and cares for Israel. While the IAJV declaration appears reasonable, it condemns equally Palestinian terrorism and the steps Israel takes to counter it.

The group’s website contains links to “other independent voices” – Independent Jewish Voices in Britain and the German group Schalom 5767. Both of these groups, nonsensically and unequivocally, blame the Middle East problem not on continued Palestinian and Arab violence and rejection of Israel’s existence, but on the occupation that is a direct result. Further, IAJV spokesmen such as Antony Loewenstein and Peter Slezak have made it clear in recent radio interviews that they regard Israel as the source of the region’s problems. If Levey really supports and cares for Israel, he should find better ways of showing it than by backing a fringe group that gives such comfort to Israel’s enemies.
Robert Friedman
Melbourne, Vic