More from Oz. Leftism and Islam mirror today what they did in the 1930s.
Although this clip is from July 8th, it is still interesting in terms of the tactics of the Anti-Israel group.
JEWISH Melburnian Bruce Hill and a small band of protesters agreed to call off a counter-rally in opposition to a pro-Palestinian demonstration last Friday, but he is not entirely happy about the decision.
A crowd, reported to be around 100-strong, besieged a Max Brenner chocolate shop at Melbourne’s Queen Victoria Square on Lonsdale Street last Friday night, shouting “From
the river to the sea, Palestine will be free,” while frightened shoppers kept their distance.
Although Hill, a long-time Israel supporter, and five other protesters complied with police requests, he said seven decades after Nazis barred entry to Jewish stores in Germany and Austria, he and other Jews felt compelled to voice their disgust when Max Brenner shops in Melbourne and Sydney were declared off limits because of their ties to Israel.
“All we were planning to do was stand very quietly, not engage with these people, and hold posters showing Nazi stormtroopers outside Jewish shops, with the slogan, ‘Berlin 1933, Melbourne 2011’,” he said.
Hill emphasised pro-Palestinians had a right to demonstrate peacefully. “You’re allowed to demonstrate, obviously, but I think the tactics of boycotting stores has a pretty deep and shocking resonance,” he told The AJN.
The protest, though, was anything but peaceful. Pro-Palestinian demonstrators ignored police orders to move on and scuffles broke out, leaving some officers injured.
A police spokesperson told The AJN there were 19 arrests – 13 men and six women – and 16 have been charged and bailed on offences including trespassing, besetting a premises and assaulting police. Three others were issued with penalty notices for riotous behaviour.
Three police received minor injuries but no member of the public was injured. A police cordon set up to protect the premises and shield shoppers in the precinct held firm against the violent display.
The local group, Students for Palestine, claims the Max Brenner chain’s parent company, Strauss Corporation, supplies its sweets to the Israel Defence Forces. It therefore sought to bar Melbourne shoppers from buying their chocolates as part of a Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) action.
New Zealand-born Hill said the counter-protest he organised with Ted Lapkin, a former consultant with the Australia/Israel & Jewish Affairs Council, was a personal initiative and did not have backing from any Jewish community group.
He said police told Israel supporters they had a right to protest but it might interfere with policing the political action.
Yet Hill said he felt uneasy about looking on. “How did that work out in the 1930s? Last time we took that approach, how did it work out?”
Hill called on the Jewish community to have a dialogue about how to respond to BDS rallies. “It’s a discussion I think the community needs to have. Do we say nothing or do we do something? Both have things to be said for and against them.”
Responding to the city demonstration, Jewish Community Council of Victoria president John Searle said: “It’s not surprising that with the degree of violence and the purpose of the demonstrations that has been displayed to date that so many arrests occurred. I have full faith in the authorities to deal with these events and take appropriate action.”
Melbourne Ports MP Michael Danby condemned the protesters as “prejudiced fanatics who should look into their soul, while 1500 people are murdered in Syria, they launch their own sad little attack on a chocolate shop because it also has stores in Israel”.
Danby urged the community to “warm up over winter” with Max Brenner hot chocolate, rather than boycott the store.
A similar BDS event was staged outside a Max Brenner outlet in Sydney on June 11.