Australia’s Prime Minister Scott Morrison Does A Trump On Israel. Good

Posted on Tue 10/16/2018 by

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By Andrew Bolt ~

Good move, even if the Prime Minister is desperately pandering to Jewish voters in the Federal Seat of Wentworth, where there is a By-Election this weekend:

Prime Minister of Australia, Scott Morrison.

Mr Morrison said he had been persuaded to consider the issue of moving Australia’s mission to Jerusalem — in stark contrast to the position taken by Malcolm Turnbull — following discussions with the Liberal Party’s candidate in this weekend’s Wentworth by-election, Dave Sharma, a former Australian ambassador to Israel.

This is so obviously a play to the 12.5 per cent of voters in Wentworth who are Jewish. It seems a sign of desperation, coming so very late in the campaign.

And why does Morrison say he’s only “consider” the move? Both desperate and tentative?

Donald Trump would never be so “yes but” about this. Of course Australia should move its embassy to the Israeli capital, to both recognise a reality and to signal that Palestinian and a wider Muslim intransigence to Israel’s existence will not be rewarded.

So good on Morrison.

And Sharma can take some credit:

Sharma has argued for moving the embassy and recognising Jerusalem as part of a two-state solution rather than apart from it. Speaking at a Wentworth candidate’s panel in Bondi yesterday, he said: “I think we should be open to considering that question, as Australians. The US has moved their embassy to West Jerusalem. That part of Jerusalem has been controlled by Israel since 1948 and everyone accepts that it would be part of Israel in any two-state solution. But I also believe we need to look at this question in the context of our support for a two-state solution, and whether such a move would help further a sovereign two-state solution.”

And shame on Labor:

Opposition foreign affairs spokeswoman Penny Wong said the move was part of a “desperate” attempt to hold onto the seat of Wentworth, which has a high Jewish population…

“Both the government and the opposition have supported the approach of most other nations of maintaining our embassy in Tel Aviv on the grounds that Jerusalem’s status must be determined as part of an overall two state solution that recognises the State of Israel behind secure borders.

This is misleading. No credible two-state solution denies that West Jerusalem would remain with Israel, and any Australian embassy would be in that part of the city. It is simply false to suggest that moving our embassy has any implication for a two-state solution.

UPDATE

This is finally the kind of drawing-a-line politics that I have been urging on Morrison and which will give conservatives an issue they will gladly fight for. And I note that Sharma is today doing more main-stream media, too.

UPDATE 2

Morrison really does seem worried about the Jewish vote in Wentworth. He will also consider following Donald Trump on a second issue – reviewing the nuclear peace deal with Iran that Trump has rejected.

Greg Sheridan:

Similarly, the Morrison government is absolutely right to undertake a root-and-branch review of Australian policy towards Iran. The default position has been just to go along with Barack Obama’s deal that relieved sanctions on Iran in exchange for some restraints on the Iranian nuclear program.

This was always a crummy deal. Even if it is complied with, it leads directly to Iran as a nuclear weapons-capable state just a few years down the track.

Morrison’s policy is not going to be US policy, or the old default policy.

Instead, the government will undertake a full review of whether the deal actually prevents Iran from acquiring nukes. But this review will also examine all the related issues. Are the proceeds of the deal being used by Iran to produce other destabilising weapons and to support the export of terrorism?

UPDATE 3

How powerful has the influence of Donald Trump been in these two moves by Morrison. Trump has shown true leadership.

Andrew Bolt writes for the Herald Sun, Daily Telegraph, and The Advertiser and runs Australia’s most-read political blog. On week nights he hosts The Bolt Report on Sky News at 7pm and his Macquarie Radio show at 8pm with Steve Price.

Read more excellent articles from Andrew Bolt’s Blog . http://blogs.news.com.au/heraldsun/andrewbolt/