Professor Stuart Rees Awarded Inaugural Jerusalem (Al Quds) Peace Prize By Supporters Of Palestinian Human Rights

Professor Emeritus Stuart Rees AM

On 29 November 2018 at a black-tie event in the Queen’s Hall of the Victorian State Parliament, Melbourne, the inaugural Jerusalem (Al Quds) Peace Prize was awarded to Professor Stuart Rees, founder of the Centre for Peace and Conflict Studies at Sydney University that in turn established the prestigious Sydney Peace Prize. Stuart Rees has been indefatigable in his support for peace and for Palestinian human rights.  The prize was presented by former senator, Australian foreign minister  and New South Wales state premier, Bob Carr, and hopefully will augur a turning point  in Australian and Western attitudes to the  sorely oppressed Palestinian people.

The Arabic name for Jerusalem is Al Quds, meaning “The Holy One”, and surely there is nothing more fundamentally holy than peace.  The Jerusalem (Al Quds) Peace Prize) will be awarded annually by Australians for Palestine (AFP) and the Australia-Palestine Advocacy Network (APAN). The day of the award, 29 November, was chosen because it is the United Nations Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People [1]. Some pertinent comments on the eminent awardee, the award event and  its context are set out below.

  1. Professor Emeritus Stuart Rees AM, the first Jerusalem (Al Quds) Peace Prize recipient.   

Professor Emeritus Stuart Rees AM is an eminent Australian academic and human rights advocate, and was lauded thus by those giving the awards: “Stuart  Rees is a prominent Australian academic, author, poet and ethicist, whose life has almost totally revolved around human rights and conflict resolution. In 2005, he was awarded a Membership of the Order of Australia [AM] for service to international relations, particularly as Director of the Centre for Peace and Conflict Studies at the University of Sydney and through the establishment of the highly-regarded Sydney Peace Prize. Professor Rees was commended for the Jerusalem (Al Quds) Peace Prize for his scholarship and activism in pursuit of justice for the Palestinian people, his staunch commitment to the UN-declared international status of the city of Jerusalem since 1947 and his belief in peace with justice for the benefit of all peoples living in the Holy Land. His numerous books, his several anthologies of poetry, and his willingness to write and speak publicly on social justice issues, have seen him described as one of the most humane voices in Australia today” [1].

Stuart Rees was educated in the UK with postgraduate specialization in sociology and social studies. He worked at the  University of Aberdeen and University of Southampton (UK),  the University of Toronto  and Wilfrid Laurier University (Canada)  in the University of California, Berkeley and the University of Texas at (US) and thence at the University of Sydney (Australia) as Professor of Social Work and Social Policy (1978-2000).  He has had a long record as a human rights activist for the disadvantaged,  Indigenous Australians and the Palestinians. In addition to his scholarly publications, Stuart Rees is also a poet and a novelist.

Stuart Rees’ terrific novel “A Lover’s Country” (2016) is based on the real life event of the award of the prestigious Sydney Peace Prize in 2003 to Palestinian writer, scholar, legislator and activist Hanan Ashrawi [3, 4]. This award  aroused the ire of the ferocious  Australian Zionist Lobby and its  Mainstream journalist, politician and academic supporters that dominate media and public life in Australia and elsewhere in the West. Indeed the Jerusalem (Al Quds) Peace Prize acceptance speech of Stuart Rees and the award speech of Bob Carr both dealt with this episode at length. The plot involves Tom Markson (academic,  convenor of a Sydney Peace Award jury and evidently based on Stuart Rees himself). Tom himself in a drunken moment of weakness finally succumbs to Zionist pressure to reverse the award decision,  much to the intense displeasure of his lover and former student Naomi Branach (an anti-racist Jewish human rights  activist and journalist who is working in Palestine).  However Tom reverses his decision, he sticks to his guns over the award, the lovers make up and there are 3 extremely graphically described sex scenes involving Tom and Naomi in the novel that rank Stuart Rees together with Henry Miller in this literary respect [3, 4].

  1. Activist celebrities at the Jerusalem (Al Quds) Peace Prize award function.

Bob Carr as a former premier of News South Wales, former senator and former Australian foreign minister was the most important of the celebrities present, and made the official award presentation speech. Bob Carr deserves great credit for getting the cravenly US lackey Australian Labor Party to shift to a more “balanced” approach to Palestine while still advocating a “2-state solution” for a Palestine that has now been 90% ethnically cleansed of Indigenous Palestinian inhabitants. Bob Carr served as Australian foreign minister under fervently pro-Zionist PM Julia Gillard who had come to power in the 2010 pro-Zionist-led Coup that removed an evidently insufficiently  pro-Zionist Labor PM Kevin Rudd from office [5, 6]. When the issue of recognition of the “non-member observer state ” State of Palestine at the UN came up, PM Gillard  wanted to join with the US and vote no. However Bob Carr was able to persuade the Labor MPs to support the compromise of Australia “abstaining” at the UN vote. According to an Australian Parliamentary Library report: “On 29 November 2012 the UNGA voted to accord ‘Palestine’ ‘non-member observer state status’—138 states voted in favour of the resolution; nine countries voted against it and 41, including Australia, abstained… Shadow Foreign Minister Julie Bishop, indicating a clear partisan divide on this issue, stated on a number of occasions that the Coalition would have voted ‘no’ on a resolution upgrading the Palestinians’ status at the UN” [7].

Australia has had a shocking record of voting “no” or “abstaining” over numerous motions supporting Palestinian human rights and decent treatment of Palestinians [7]. Indeed under the Right-dominated Coalition Government  Australia has become second only to Trump America as a supporter of Apartheid Israel. Extraordinarily,  the present fervently pro-Zionist Coalition Government under new PM Scott “Scomo” Morrison has greatly affronted the Muslim world and put on hold an important Indonesia-Australia Free Trade Agreement by proposing to consider moving Australia’s Israel embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem.  Jerusalem (Al Quds) is the third  holiest site in the Muslim world, and Apartheid Israel illegally annexed East Jerusalem into Israel as well its Palestinian population who are unable to vote for the government ruling them.  Bob Carr has been able to carefully shift the now Opposition Labor Party to a more civilized and balanced (if still very inadequate) position on Palestine, for which he has been vilified by the Zionists. Bob Carr has boldly stated “[PM Rudd] said about one-fifth of the money he had raised in the 2007 election campaign had come from the Jewish community… subcontracting our foreign policy to party donors is what this involves. Or appears to involve” [8, 9]. Bob Carr on his book “Diary of a Foreign Minister”: “The important point about a diary of a foreign minister is you shine light on areas of government that are otherwise in darkness, and the influence of lobby groups is one of those areas. What I’ve done is to spell out how the extremely conservative instincts of the pro-Israel lobby in Melbourne was exercised through the then-prime minister’s office” [10]. Indeed the Coalition’s outrageous Jerusalem move proposal was condemned by the Labor Opposition, most notably by the Jewish Zionist Labor Shadow Attorney General Mark Dreyfus, as a departure from a 70-year bipartisan Coalition-Labor consensus on the special nature of Jerusalem.  .

Also present at the Jerusalem (Al Quds) Peace Prize award was former Greens Senator Lee Rhiannon who has been a strong and resolute supporter of the Palestinian human rights. I was there, sought her out, shook her hand and praised her for being like a “candle in the night” for her statements supporting the Palestinians in a look-the-other-way Australia that horribly ignores the plight of the Palestinians [11]. The Australian Greens are vastly better than the Coalition Government or the Labor Opposition over Palestine but, apart from the wonderful, resolutely pro-human right  Senator Lee Rhiannon, are opposed to Boycotts, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) against Apartheid Israel [12, 13]. Under pressure from rightist Greens over her support for BDS, Lee Rhiannon resigned from Federal Parliament in August 2018 [14]. Lee Rhiannon will be sorely missed as resolute supporter of the Palestinian human rights in the Australian Federal Parliament (although one notes that the remaining Green MPs  are far more supportive of Palestinian human rights than the  Coalition or Labor MPs).

Among many  human rights and anti-war activists present, a notable presence at the award was the Indigenous Australian activist Dr Gary Foley from Victoria University. Gary Foley is an Australian Aboriginal Gumbainggir academic, writer,  actor and activist who helped establish the Aboriginal Tent Embassy in Canberra in 1972 and an  Aboriginal Legal Service in Redfern, Sydney.  Gary Foley has been a resolute campaigner for the human rights of  Aboriginal Australians [15], notably through the “Treaty Republic” website [16] (for comparison  of the ongoing Australian Aboriginal Genocide and the ongoing Palestinian Genocide see [17]). Coalition-ruled Australia is second only to Trump America as a supporter of  nuclear terrorist, democracy-by-genocide Apartheid Israel. Apartheid Israel and Australia  have a common history of European invasion with dispossession and ethnic cleansing of Indigenous people.  The ongoing Palestinian Genocide and the ongoing Australian Aboriginal Genocide are both marked by a circa 10 year gap in life expectancy between Indigenous and non-Indigenous inhabitants [17].

Conversely, former Labor Government Foreign Minister and present Chancellor of the Australian National University, Gareth Evans [18], was also present at the award. Evans is noted for his espousal of the doctrine of Responsibility to Protect (R2P) [19] that was, for example, used by the France, UK and  US (FUKUS) Coalition to justify destruction of impoverished Africa’s richest country, Libya, with 0.1 million Libyans violently killed, a similar  number of avoidable deaths from war-imposed deprivation, empowerment of jihadi rule and violence, a continuing civil war and 1 million refugees [20]. In Evans’ own words: “Sixteen months ago, in March 2011, the United Nations Security Council, with no dissenting voices, and expressly invoking the principle of the responsibility to protect, authorized the use of ‘all necessary measures’ to protect civilians at imminent risk of massacre in Benghazi and elsewhere in Gaddafi’s Libya. A NATO-led airborne military operation immediately followed, and those thousands of lives at imminent risk were unquestionably saved. The March resolution followed a unanimous one three weeks earlier, also invoking R2P, which condemned Gaddafi’s violence against unarmed citizens, demanded that it stop, and sought to concentrate his mind by applying targeted sanctions, an arms embargo and the threat of ICC prosecution. Only when that was ignored was the military intervention authorized. I and many others hailed these resolutions as the coming of age of R2P, a textbook example of the doctrine working as it was supposed to, saving lives imminently at risk, and at last decisively cutting across centuries of state practice treating sovereignty almost as a license to kill. If the Council had acted as decisively and robustly in the 1990s as it did in Libya,  the lives of 8,000 others would have been saved in Srbrenica and 800,000 in Rwanda. But now, over Syria, despite a rapidly climbing death toll of as many as 17,000 or more, the Security Council remains, as it has been for over a year, almost completely paralysed, barely able to agree on condemnation of the violence and a diplomatic mission to address it, let alone more robust measures” [21]. Without UNSC approval of US Coalition air war intervention against the secular Assad regime,  the US Alliance nevertheless became heavily involved in the Syrian civil war via jihadi and other proxies with 0.5 million Syrians killed violently, a similar number of deaths from war-imposed deprivation, devastation of the country and 11 million refugees [20, 22].

Of course the ”right to protect” Israelis is always used by Apartheid Israel and by the US lackeys the UK, Canada, and Australia to justify horrendously disproportionate  killing of Palestinians by the neo-Nazi Israeli military.  Thus a 2017 summation: “In the 21st century so far (2000-2017), Israeli deaths totalled 2,962 of which 1,615 were non-terrorism deaths (Israeli killing Israelis) and 1,347 were terrorism deaths of which only 164 occurred in Israel proper (minus Jerusalem) . Thus Israelis were about 10 times more likely to kill Israelis within Israel proper than Palestinian terrorists and nearly 90% of Israeli deaths from terrorism occurred in the Occupied Palestinian Territory (including  Jerusalem). Israeli/Zionist deaths at the hands of  Palestinians total 3,847 (1920 – February 2017) as compared to 2 million Palestinian deaths from violence (0.1 million ) or imposed deprivation (1.9 million) in the period 1935-2017 [23], this yielding   an overall  Palestinian/Zionist death ratio in this period of 2,000,000/3,847 = 520. In the 21st century (2000-2017) , Israeli deaths totalled 2,962 of which 1,615 were non-terrorism deaths (Israelis killing Israelis) and 1,347 were terrorism deaths of which 164 occurred in Israel proper (minus Jerusalem) . Thus Israelis were about 10 times more likely to kill Israelis within Israel proper (minus illegally unified Jerusalem) than Palestinian terrorists. One notes that Israel deaths from Gaza rockets and, mortars totalled 32 in the period 2004-2017 [24]. By way of comparison, in the period 2000 – February 2017 violent Palestinian deaths at the hands of Israelis totalled 9,505, this being  297 times greater than Israeli deaths from Gaza rockets, 58 times greater than Israel terrorism deaths in Israel proper (minus Jerusalem) , 8 times greater than Israeli terrorism deaths in the Occupied Palestinian Territory plus Jerusalem, 7 times greater than total Israeli terrorism deaths in the same period, 6 times greater than Israeli non-terrorism deaths  in Israel at the hands of fellow Israelis (Israelis killing Israelis)” [25].

  1. The Jerusalem (Al Quds) Peace Prize speeches, Israeli Apartheid and the ongoing Palestinian Genocide.

Bob Carr gave an excellent speech dealt at length with the machinations of pro-Zionists over the award of the Sydney Peace Prize to outstanding  Palestinian activist  Hanan Ashrawi  in 2003. He also commendably argued for Palestinian human rights and a just 2-state solution for peace in Palestine. Professor Stuart Rees covered similar ground (he was intimately involved in the award to Hanan Ashrawi ) and then dealt with the actual awful circumstances of the Occupied Palestinians, dire circumstances also considered by a later excellent Palestinian speaker.

However  from my perspective as a scientist I favour the approach of Lord Kelvin (a key player in development of thermodynamics and the scientific  basis of the  Industrial Revolution) that it is most useful to couch arguments in numerical terms.  Now it is not nice to describe dire poverty, passive and active mass murder, ethnic cleansing, human rights deprivation and huge avoidable deaths from deprivation while 150 very well-dressed people are wanting to enjoy a sumptuous 3-course meal  at a black tie/lounge attire function in a wonderful Victorian banquet hall.  Accordingly the speeches were evidently variously adjusted to the circumstances of the banquet. Further, one notes that neither the Coalition Government nor the Labor Opposition even recognize the State of Palestine, notwithstanding  the efforts of decent folk like Bob Carr who tweeted in May 2018: “Recognition of Palestine inevitable given resolutions by state and territory ALP [Australian Labor Party] conferences and made more inevitable by shooting of unarmed protesters, including children, in Gaza” [26].  The core realities of Apartheid Israel and the ongoing Palestinian Genocide that could have been put up on a big screen to ruin everyone’s appetite are summarized below.

In 1880 there were about 500,000 Arab Palestinians and about 25,000 Jews (half of the latter being immigrants) living in Palestine. Genocidally racist  Zionists have been responsible  for a Palestinian Genocide involving successive mass expulsions (800,000 in 1948 and 400,00 Arabs expelled in 1967) , ethnic cleansing of 90% of the land of Palestine, and in the century since the British invasion of Palestine about 2.3  million Palestinian deaths from violence (0.1 million) or from violently-imposed deprivation  (2.2 million). Presently there are now 8 million Palestinian refugees, and of 14 million Palestinians (half of them children and three quarters women and children) about 50% (7 million) are forbidden to even step foot in their own country on pain of death, only 1.8 million  Palestinian Israelis  (13%) are permitted to vote for the government ruling all of the former  Mandated Palestine, and 5.0 million Palestinians  have zero human rights as Occupied Palestinians in West Bank ghettoes or mini-Bantustans (3.0 million) or in the Gaza Concentration Camp (2.0 million). The “lucky”, circa 2 million  Palestinian Israelis are Third Class citizens subject to about 50 Nazi-style discriminatory laws.

Indigenous Palestinians now represent 50% of the population of the territory ruled by Apartheid Israel (Jewish Israelis represent 47%) but of these Indigenous Palestinian subjects, 74% are excluded from voting for the government ruling them –  in a word, Apartheid. The per capita GDP (nominal) in 2016 was  a deadly $2,800 for Occupied Palestinians  as compared to $39,000 for Apartheid Israel,  $50,000 for Australia [27] and an annual per capita income of $22,000 for the sorely deprived and oppressed Indigenous Australians (all in US dollars)[17]. This is a huge and deadly discrepancy that is reflected in differential avoidable mortality and differential infant mortality. The under-5 infant mortality rate (under-5 infant deaths per 1,000 live births) is 22 for  Occupied Palestinians as compared to 3.5 for their occupier Apartheid Israel, and annual under-5 infant deaths total 3,300 for the Occupied Palestinians as compared to 580 for occupier Apartheid Israel. For impoverished Developing countries  avoidable deaths from deprivation are about 1.4 times the under-5 infant deaths,  and hence annual Occupied Palestinian avoidable deaths from deprivation total 4,600 as compared to an average of 500 violent killings of Palestinians each year in the 21st century.

The remorselessly bombed and blockaded Gaza Concentration Camp is already “unliveable” according to the UN: “With an economy in free fall, 70 per cent youth unemployment, widely contaminated drinking water and a collapsed health care system, Gaza has become “unliveable”, the Special Rapporteur on human rights in the Palestinian Territories [Michael Lynk] told the Third Committee (Social, Humanitarian and Cultural) today [2018]” [28]. One notes that  Articles 55 and 56  of the Geneva Convention relative to the Protection of Civilian Persons in Time of War unequivocally state that the Occupier must supply its Subjects with life-sustaining food and medical services “to the fullest extent of the means available to it” [29] and thus US-, Australia-, UK-, Canada- and EU-backed Apartheid Israel is in gross violation of the Geneva Convention as well as of  the UN Genocide Convention, the Rights of the Child Convention,  the Refugee Convention, the UN Charter,  the UN Convention on the Suppression and Punishment of the Crime of Apartheid, the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, as well as of numerous UN General Assembly, UN Security Council , and International Court of Justice determinations.

  1. Profound ironies at the Jerusalem (Al Quds) Peace Prize event.

I was sitting at the back of the Queens’s Hall so I may have missed some of the more subtle ironies of the event. However I pointed out some of the more obvious ironies to Palestinian and other guests I met.

The greatest irony was that the Queen’s Hall was dominated from the back of the hall by a huge statue of Queen Victoria who led the world in war mongering, imperialism, genocide, ethnic cleansing and opiate drug  pushing on 5 inhabited continents . Queen Victoria’s sometime Prime Minister Benjamin Disraeli, in addition to complicity in genocidal British crimes in Ireland, North America, Latin America, Asia, Australia and Oceania,  was arguably the founder of British Zionism and indeed published a novel  describing Jews returning to Palestine [30-32].

A further irony was that the ticket for the event was A$140 or about US$100 as compared to the US$2,800 annual per capita GDP for Occupied Palestinians [27].  For couples coming from interstate and staying at a decent hotel the cost would have approached the US$2,800 annual per  capita  GDP for Occupied Palestinians. Indeed an academic guest commented to me that the event appeared quite “bourgeois”. However  there was quite a good sprinkling of good socialist activists  at the event.

It is possible that I was the only Jewish guest at the event but there may have been more. Indeed among the most resolute critics of the appalling crimes of Apartheid Israel are anti-racist Jewish humanitarians for whom the post-Jewish Holocaust cry of “never again” means “never again to anyone”, with “anyone” notably including the sorely oppressed Palestinians (for alphabetically-ordered compendia of their opinions and those of other like-minded people see [23, 33-40 ]).

I pointed out to some of my fellow guests that utterly false Zionist mythology posits that Jews were granted Palestine by “God”, were exiled from Palestine by the Romans, made their way to Spain, were thence expelled to Western Europe and made their way to Eastern Europe via France, the Netherlands and Germany . However eminent Jewish Hungarian writer Arthur Koestler  has argued that there were large numbers of Ashkenazi Jews (Eastern European Jews)  in Eastern Europe before there were large numbers of Jews in Germany, that you can’t get something from nothing, and that the Ashkenazi Jews derived from Khazar converts to Judaism in Southern Russia in the first millennium CE [41]. Consonant with over 2 centuries of my documented family history, DNA analysis has shown that I am 57% Ashkenazi Jewish and 24% British Celtic but with zero (0) English, French, Benelux, Scandinavian or  German in between i.e. I appear to be living proof of Koestler’s Zionism-destroying hypothesis. Professor Shlomo Sand of Tel Aviv University declares that the ethnic and cultural descendants of the Jewish Palestinians at the time of  Jesus Christ are actually today’s sorely oppressed Indigenous Palestinians, while the Jewish Israelis largely descend from Yemeni, Berber and Khazar converts to Judaism in the first millennium CE [42]. Dr Eran Elhaik and colleagues in the UK have traced the origin of the Ashkenazim to Ashkenaz and similarly named villages in North Eastern Turkey that were involved in trade at the end of the Great Silk Road: “By the 8th century the words “Jew” and “merchant” were practically synonymous, and it was around this time that Ashkenazic Jews began relocating from ancient Ashkenaz to the Khazar Empire to expand their mercantile operations” [43]. A major, multi-author  mitochondrial (maternal origin) DNA analysis published in the top scientific journal Nature found that there was a substantial prehistoric European ancestry amongst Ashkenazi Jewish maternal lineages [44].

A striking irony was that all  the speakers at Jerusalem (Al Quds) Peace Prize event followed the standard practice of respectful  Australians at such public events of acknowledging “the Indigenous Traditional Owners past, present and emerging  of the land on which we stand”. A young  Palestinian lady at my table was highly amused by the implausibility of Jewish Israelis offering such acknowledgments to the Indigenous Palestinian Traditional Owners of the land, towns, cities and over 500  villages ethnically cleansed by the genocidally racist Zionists.

For anti-racist Jews and indeed all anti-racist humanitarians the core moral messages from the Jewish Holocaust (5-6 million dead, 1 in 6 dying from deprivation) and from the more general WW2 European Holocaust (30 million Slav, Jewish and Gypsy dead) are “zero tolerance for racism”, “never again to anyone”, “bear witness” and “zero tolerance for lying”.  Outstanding Jewish American scholar Professor Jared Diamond in his best-selling book “Collapse” (Prologue, p10, Penguin edition) enunciated the “moral principle, namely that it is morally wrong for one people to dispossess, subjugate, or exterminate another people” [45] – an injunction grossly violated by racist Zionist-run Apartheid Israel and its racist, genocide-committing and genocide-ignoring US Alliance backers.

  1. The Jerusalem (Al Quds) Peace Prize lecture by inaugural awardee Professor Stuart Rees.

The inaugural awardee of the Jerusalem (Al Quds) Peace Prize, Professor Stuart Rees, gave an excellent lecture entitled “Peace with justice or collusion with cruelty?” that can be read in full here [46].

Professor Stuart Rees commenced with an explanation of the world’s moral choice between  “peace with justice or collusion with cruelty”:  “The Palestinian national poet Mahmoud Darwish wanted poetry to influence his people’s national consciousness and thereby help them to cope with a military occupation. He reflected, ‘We travel like other people, but we return to nowhere. As if travelling is the way of the clouds… We have a country of words. Speak, speak so we may know the end of this travel’ (1). My response to Mahmoud Darwish’s request is to speak of the choices confronting Palestinians and the general public: either engage in a struggle for peace with justice, or collude with cruelty. The description ‘Palestinians’, refers to millions barely surviving in refugee camps in Gaza, Lebanon, Jordan and what’s left of Syria, to the two million imprisoned in besieged Gaza for the past eleven years, the residents of the West Bank militarily occupied since 1967 and the 20% of Palestinian inhabitants of Israel who have no rights to be free. My commitment is also to Palestinian friends in the diaspora who need the support and solidarity of anyone who shares the ideals of a common humanity” [46].

Stuart Rees  then proceeded to describe his background that influenced his commitment to truth and justice, and the obstacles to peace with justice in Palestine, a fundamental obstacle being egregious Zionist mendacity in a context of violence and authoritarianism around the world (as exampled in my perception by the violent exceptionalism of US-backed Apartheid Israel and the endlessly violent,  Zionist-subverted US Alliance). Stuart Rees then set out the crucial (and in my view, minimal) steps for peace and justice for Palestinians: “Crucial steps to foster justice for Palestinians, based around their rights to self-determination, include the end of the brutal occupation of Palestinians’ lands and an end to the eleven-year long siege of Gaza. Those goals must run parallel to the outlawing of the racist discrimination against non-Jewish citizens in Israel, the release of almost 300 children from Israeli jails, the release of most of the 6,000 adults held in Israeli prisons and a crafting of policies to end the imprisonment of millions in refugee camps. These goals challenge anyone who should be influenced by the dictum, if you are not outraged by injustice, you lose touch with your own humanity” [46].

In presenting these arguments Stuart Rees set out some of the worst atrocities of the genocidally racist Zionist invaders: “The Nakba tragedy of 1948 when 700,000 Palestinians, driven from their homes to become refugees, when over 500 villages and most of urban Palestine was razed from the face of the earth… In the conflict of 2008/09 1,400 Palestinians were killed including 345 children and more than 5,000 injured. Thirteen Israelis were killed at least four by friendly fire. Over 3,500 Gazan housing units and 18 schools were destroyed, water and electricity resources, sewage networks and pumping stations were badly damaged. Israel used white phosphorous in densely populated urban areas, but they are still the victims. In the 2014

Operation Protective Edge, at least 2,100 Palestinians were killed, 495 of them children and 11,000 were wounded. Sixty-six Israeli soldiers and seven civilians lost their lives. Eighteen thousand housing units were totally destroyed 108,000 people made homeless and almost half a million displaced. At least 24 medical facilities were damaged… The {Trump] US administration [recently] cut its $360 million aid to UNRWA, the UN organisation which runs a modern secular education for 500,000 boys and girls, vaccinations and health services to over 3 million refugees… At the same time that $360 million was being cut to UNRWA, the US provides $38 billion in arms over ten years to Israel – an Obama decision – already one of the most developed countries on the planet with one of the best equipped armies in the world… Thousands of brave Gazans, organised not by Hamas but by grass roots non-violent groups, have been protesting for six months [in 2018] at the Gaza border risking their lives to demand the right to return and an end to the siege… There have been over 200 fatalities at the border and up to 18,000 people maimed. It is long overdue that privileged countries also find the courage to support such resistance” [46].

Stuart Rees then considered crucial moral arguments for world action: “ In grass roots protests for justice, if campaigns have legal, moral and cultural legitimacy, they gather widespread support and are likely to prevail. In regard to Palestinians’ rights to self-determination, two issues convey the legitimacy of their struggle: the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement and the international status of Jerusalem… BDS outlaws anti-Semitism and racism in any form. However, it suits the opponents of the movement to foment fear by claiming that BDS is anti-Semitic and aims to abolish the state of Israel. BDS simply represents a clear demand that international laws be enforced… Since 600 BC Jerusalem has been occupied by Persians, Greeks, Romans, Arabs and Turks. It is unique among the cities of the world because of its association with the three monotheistic religions which have their holy places within its precincts … The non-binding UN Resolution 181, passed in the General Assembly in 1947 never envisaged that Jerusalem would form part of any proposed Jewish state. It was meant to be a ’corpus separatum’, a separate entity subject to international judgement and control” [46].

Stuart Rees concluded his cogent and humane address thus:“After decades of killings, destruction, human rights abuses and endless violence, Palestinians remain and resist. When you spend time in the West Bank and Gaza, you meet citizens who are strong and dignified, creative, loving, living and resisting. These traits show humanity at its best… I finish with the observation that the struggle for justice never ends, whether in conversations to influence others, in writing letters, in taking direct action as in support for the BDS movement” [46].

  1. Ongoing Palestinian Genocide and the post-Apartheid One State Solution – the ignored Elephants in the Room at the Jerusalem (Al Quds) Peace Prize award function.

One is loath to criticize the diplomacy and constraint of the excellent lecture by Professor Stuart Rees or of the excellent speeches of the other participants in the award function. However one notes that the  Jerusalem (Al Quds) Peace Prize award function was held in Australia,  a country which is second only to Trump America as a supporter of nuclear terrorist, racist Zionist-run, genocidally racist, woman-abusing, mother-abusing, child-abusing, grossly human rights abusing, serial war criminal, democracy–by-genocide Apartheid Israel. Any support in Australia (and elsewhere in the West) for the Palestinians or for BDS invites false and virulent defamation as “anti-Semites” applied to both anti-racist Jewish and non-Jewish Australians. Indeed anti-racist Jewish Australian critics of Apartheid Israel are further falsely defamed as “self-hating Jews” or “self-loathing Jews”. Even diplomacy and constraint in commenting on the Palestine issue can invite virulent attack (as indeed did the Jerusalem (Al Quds) Peace Prize award).

I am a Jewish Hungarian-origin Australian scientist  and humanitarian who is committed to outspoken free speech and to informing the Australian and wider public  about serious matters from a humane and scientific  perspective (e.g. for a sample of such my explosive revelations about Australia see [17, 32, 47-66]).  However starting about a decade ago I was made an “invisible Australian” with essentially zero effective free speech. Thus I made a series of powerful,  forthright   and astonishing nation-wide radio broadcasts on the ABC (the Australian Broadcasting Corporation, the Australian equivalent of the UK BBC) [48, 49, 51] but today if you do a Search on the ABC for “Gideon Polya” there are zero results – I do not exist, I am a non-person, and I am “invisible” in my own country, with this clearly being connected to relentless and false   defamation of me by Zionists and Zionist subversion and perversion of Australian institutions and public life.  By way of example, on Australia’s sacred Anzac Day,  Muslim, feminist  social advocate and  humanitarian  journalist  Yassmin Abdel-Magied (who worked for the ABC) posted these 7 words  on her Facebook page: “Lest we forget (Manus, Nauru, Syria, Palestine)”. Savaged by public outcry, Ms Abdel-Magied rapidly deleted the post, she and the ABC apologized, the ABC subsequently stopped her TV program and she left for London. The post was correct and her silencing by rabid jingoists is a stain on Australia and an attack on free speech. However my detailed, documented  and uncompromising publication of the horrendous and shameful details behind Yassmin Abdel-Magied’s 7 words did not cause a national outcry because I have been secretly made “invisible” [62].

Missing from the award speeches – and indeed from Mainstream discussion about the Palestine or the impoverished South in general – was any estimate of the horrendous total human toll of the ongoing Palestinian Genocide. In the century since the British invasion of Palestine there have been about 2.3  million Palestinian deaths from violence (0.1 million) or from violently-imposed deprivation  (2.2 million) [67-69],  carnage that is of the same order of magnitude  as that of the WW2 Jewish Holocaust (5-6 million Jews killed through  violence or imposed deprivation) [70, 71].

A further major  omission from the speeches was the compelling need for a post-Apartheid Unitary State  in Palestine as in post-Apartheid South Africa. The racist Zionist ethnic cleansing of 90% of Palestine means that the Western fig-leaf of a Two-State Solution is dead. The World must urgently demand an end to race-based Apartheid Israel after the example of post-Apartheid South Africa and its replacement by a Unitary State in Palestine with return of all refugees, zero tolerance for racism, equal rights for all, all human rights for all, one-person-one-vote, justice, goodwill, reconciliation, airport-level security, nuclear weapons removal, internationally-guaranteed national security initially based on present armed forces, and untrammelled access for all citizens to all of the Holy Land.

Peace is the only way but silence kills and silence is complicity. Decent people everywhere must follow the example of anti-racist Jewish and non-Jewish critics of Israeli Apartheid,  speak out forthrightly, and urge and apply  comprehensive Boycotts, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) against nuclear terrorist, democracy-by-genocide  Apartheid Israel and all people, politicians, parties, collectives, corporations and  countries supporting this genocidally racist  and grossly human rights-violating pariah state.

  1. Media responses.

A Search of the Australian ABC for  “Jerusalem (Al Quds) Peace Prize” yields zero (0)  results.  Similarly,  a Google Search for  “Jerusalem (Al Quds) Peace Prize” yields zero (0) Mainstream media reportage. However an Australian Zionist medium commented thus on the event with customary Zionist falsehood and virulence: “A despicable event took place on Thursday November 29th in Melbourne. At the Victorian’s Parliament’s prestigious Queens Hall the obnoxious Jerusalem (Al-Quds) Peace Prize was awarded by the virulently anti-Israel goon Bob Carr to BDS advocate Professor Stuart Rees” [72].

Final comments.

The award of the inaugural Jerusalem (Al Quds) Peace Prize to Professor Stuart Rees, founder of the Centre for Peace and Conflict Studies at Sydney University and resolute human rights activist, was a great occasion for those who want human rights and justice  for the  sorely oppressed Palestinians. The presentation of the award by eminent Australian Labor figure Bob Carr may mark a key turning point in Australian public life. However to be realistic, at present neither the fervently pro- Zionist  Australian Coalition Government  nor the substantially Zionist-subverted Labor Opposition even recognize the State of Palestine.

What can decent people do about the continuing Israeli Occupation,  Israeli Apartheid and ongoing Palestinian Genocide?  Decent people must (a) inform everyone they can about zero tolerance for genocide, racism and Apartheid,  (b) do their best to  ensure that the racist Zionists and their racist supporters are sidelined from public life, as have been like racists such as the Nazis, neo-Nazis, Apartheiders and the Ku Klux Klan, and (c) urge and apply Boycotts, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) against Apartheid Israel and all people, politicians, companies, corporations  and countries  supporting this genocidally racist, nuclear terrorist rogue state.

Just as those who support Nazi Germany can  reasonably be described as pro-Nazi, so those who support Apartheid Israel can be reasonably described as pro-Apartheid.  All politicians in a democracy should support one-person-one-vote but pro-Apartheid Israel politicians are violating this core democratic principle. Apprised of these realities, not just anti-racist Jews, Palestinians, Arabs and Muslims but all decent, anti-racist, pro-democracy folk will reject pro-Apartheid Israel and hence anti-democracy politicians. In Australia all decent, pro-human rights,  pro-democracy folk will utterly reject the pro-Apartheid Coalition, vote 1 Green and put the Coalition last. And every future Jerusalem (Al Quds) Peace Prize will remind the world of these key pro-humanity, pro-democracy and pro-human rights messages.


[1]. Jerusalem (Al Quds) Peace prize press release 2018, “Professor Emeritus Stuart Rees AM wins 2018 Jerusalem (Al Quds) Peace Prize:, 29 November 2018: .


[2]. “Stuart Rees, Wikipedia:  .


[3]. Stuart Rees, “A Lover’s Country”, Austin Macaulay, London, 2016.


[4]. Gideon Polya, “Review: “A Lover’s Country” By Stuart Rees – Overcoming Zionist Perversion Of The Mainstream Palestine Narrative”, Countercurrents, 27 April, 2016: .


[5]. Antony Loewenstein’s “Does the Zionist Lobby have blood on its hands in Australia?”:  .


[6]. Gideon Polya, “Pro-Zionist-led Coup ousts Australian PM Rudd”, MWC News, 29 June 2010:


[7]. Marty Harris, “Australia and the Middle East Conflict: the Rudd and Gillard Governments (2007-2013)”, Parliamentary Library, 9 June 2015: .


[8]. Lenore Taylor, “Bob Carr diaries: foreign policy was subcontracted to Jewish donors”, The Guardian, 9 April 2014:–gillard-foreign-policy-jewish-donors .


[9]. Bob Carr, “Diary of a Foreign Minister”, University of New South Wales Press, 2014.


[10]. “Former foreign minister Bob Carr says “pro-Israel lobby: influenced government policy”, ABC News, 10 April 2014: .


[11]. Lee Rhiannon, “Lee Rhiannon: why I support Palestine”, Green :Left Weekly, 19May 2016: .


[12]. Stuart Rees, “BDS: driving global justice for Palestine”, New Matilda, 17 July 2017: .


[13]. “Sanctions call not “anti-Israel: Rhiannon”, ABC News, 15 April 2011:


[14]. “Lee Rhiannon”, Wikipedia: .


[15]. Gary Foley, “Wikipedia”: .


[16]. “Treaty Republic”: .


[17]. Gideon Polya, “Apartheid Israel’s ongoing Palestinian Genocide & Australia’s Aboriginal Genocide compared”, Countercurrents, 20 February 2018: .


[18]. “Gareth Evans (politician)”, Wikipedia: .

[19]. Gareth Evans, “The Responsibility to Protect – Ending Mass Atrocity Crimes Once and for All”, Brookings Institution Press, 2009.

[20]. “Muslim Holocaust Muslim Genocide”: .

[21]. Gareth Evans, “The responsibility  to protect after Libya and Syria”, Gareth Evans, 20 July 2012: .

[22]. “Syrian civil war”, Wikipedia: .

[23]. “Palestinian Genocide”: .

[24]. “Palestinian rocket attacks on Israel”, Wikipedia: .

[25].  Gideon Polya, “Israelis kill ten times more Israelis in Apartheid Israel than do terrorists”, Countercurrents, 1 March 2017: .

[26]. Brad Norington, “Labor recognition of Palestine “more inevitable”, says Bob Carr ”, The Australian, 24 May 2018: .

[27]. “List of countries by GDP (nominal) per capita”, Wikipedia: .

[28]. “Gaza “inliveable”,  expert tells Third Committee, as mandate holders present findings on human rights situations in Iran, Eritrea, Somalia and Burundi”, UN, 24 October 2018: .

[29]. “Geneva Convention (IV) relative to the Protection of Civilian Persons in Time of War: .

[30]. Adam Kirsch, “Benjamin Disraeli”,

[31]. Mark Burdman, “How Britain’s biggest racists invented Zionism”: .

[32]. Gideon Polya, “Australian xenophobia targets China but ignores huge Israeli subversion of Australia”, Countercurrents, 7 July 2018: .

[33]. “Boycott Apartheid  Israel”:

[34]. “Gaza Concentration Camp”:  .

[35]. “Jews Against Racist Zionism”: .

[36]. “Non-Jews Against Racist Zionism”: .

[37]. “Nuclear weapons ban, end poverty and reverse climate change”:

[38]. Apartheid Israeli state terrorism: (A) individuals  exposing Apartheid Israeli state terrorism, and (B) countries subject to Apartheid Israeli state terrorism.”, Palestinian Genocide: .

[39]. “Stop state terrorism” :  .

[40]. “State crime and non-state terrorism”:  .

[41]. Arthur Koestler , “The Thirteenth Tribe”.


[42]. Shlomo Sand, “The Invention of the Jewish People”.


[43]. Eran Elhaik, “Uncovering Ashkenaz, birthplace of Yiddish speakers”, The Conversation, 6 May 2016: .


[44]. Martin Richards et al, “A substantial prehistoric European ancestry amongst Ashkenazi maternal lineages”, Nature, 2013:  .

[45]. Jared Diamond “Collapse”, Penguin.

[46]. Stuart Rees, “Peace with justice or collusion with cruelty?”, The Jerusalem (Al Quds) Peace Prize Lecture, Victorian Parliament November 29, 2018: .

[47]. Gideon Polya, “Jane Austen and the Black Hole of British History. Colonial rapacity, holocaust denial and the crisis in biological sustainability”, G.M. Polya, Melbourne, 1998, 2008, now available for free perusla on the web: .

[48]. Gideon Polya, “Bengali Famine”, Ockham’s Razor, ABC Radio National, 21 February 1999:  [transcript of ABC radio broadcast].

[49]. Gideon Polya, “Crisis in our universities”, Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC) Radio National, Ockham’s Razor, 19 August 2001: .

[50]. Gideon Polya, “Current academic censorship and self-censorship in Australian universities”, 2001, Free University Education: .

[51]. “Australian complicity in Iraq mass mortality”,  Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC) Radio National, Ockham’s Razor, 28 August 2005 (and republished in “Lies, Deep Fries & Statistics”,edited by Robyn Williams, ABC Books, Sydney, 2007): .

[52]. Gideon Polya, “Racist Zionism and Israeli State Terrorism threats to Australia and Humanity”, Palestinian Genocide, 2010: .

[53]. Gideon Polya, “Australia And Britain Killed 6-7 Million Indians In WW2 Bengal Famine”, Countercurrents, 29 September, 2011: .

[54]. Gideon Polya, “Review: “The Cambridge History Of Australia” Ignores Australian Involvement In 30 Genocides”, Countercurrents, 14 October, 2013: .

[55]. Gideon Polya, “37 Ways Of Tackling Australian Educational Apartheid And Social Inequity”,  Countercurrents, 22 May, 2013: .

[56]. Gideon Polya, “Australian State Terrorism –  Zero Australian Terrorism Deaths, 1 Million Preventable Australian Deaths & 10 Million Muslims Killed By US Alliance Since 9-11”,  Countercurrents, 23 September, 2014: .

[57]. Gideon Polya, “Paris Atrocity Context: 27 Million Muslim Avoidable  Deaths From Imposed Deprivation In 20 Countries Violated By US Alliance Since 9-11”, Countercurrents, 22 November, 2015: .

[58]. “Experts: US did 9-11”: .

[59]. Gideon Polya, “As UK Lackeys Or US Lackeys Australians Have Invaded 85 Countries (British 193, French 80, US 70)”, Countercurrents, 9 February, 2015: .

[60]. Gideon Polya, “Australia’s horrendous abuse of Aboriginal children the tip of massive Australian child abuse”, Countercurrents, 30 July 2016: .

[61]. Gideon Polya, “Exposing And Thence Punishing Worst Polluter Nations Via Weighted Annual Per Capita Greenhouse Gas Pollution Scores”, Countercurrents, 19 March, 2016:  .

[62]. Gideon Polya, “Pro-Apartheid Australia’s New White Australia & compulsory Australian Values statement”, Countercurrents, 12 May 2017: .

[63]. Gideon Polya, “Yassmin Abdel-Magied censored on Anzac Day – jingoists trash Australian free speech”, Countercurrents, 28 April 2017: .

[64]. Gideon Polya, “Australia shocked by cricket ball tampering but ignores horrendous Australian crimes from child abuse to genocide”, Countercurrents, 24 April 2018: .

[65]. Gideon Polya, “Pro-coal Australia & Trump America reject dire IPCC Report & declare War on Terra”, Countercurrents, 17 October 2018:

[66]. “Subversion of Australia”: .

[67]. Gideon Polya, “70th anniversary of Apartheid Israel & commencement of large-scale Palestinian Genocide”, Countercurrents, 11 May 2018: .

[68]. Gideon Polya, “Israeli-Palestinian & Middle East conflict – from oil to climate genocide”, Countercurrents, 21 August 2017: .

[69]. Gideon Polya, “End 50 Years Of Genocidal Occupation & Human Rights Abuse By US-Backed Apartheid Israel”, Countercurrents,  9 June  2017: .

[70]. Martin Gilbert, “Jewish History Atlas”, Weidenfeld & Nicolson, London, 1969.

[71]. Martin Gilbert “Atlas of the Holocaust”(Michael Joseph, London, 1982.

[72]. “A disgrace. Jerusalem (Al Quds) Peace Prize”, JMedia, 30 November 2018: .

Dr Gideon Polya taught science students at a major Australian university for 4 decades. He published some 130 works in a 5 decade scientific career, most recently a huge pharmacological reference text “Biochemical Targets of Plant Bioactive Compounds” (CRC Press/Taylor & Francis, New York & London , 2003). He has published “Body Count. Global avoidable mortality since 1950” (G.M. Polya, Melbourne, 2007: ); see also his contributions “Australian complicity in Iraq mass mortality” in “Lies, Deep Fries & Statistics” (edited by Robyn Williams, ABC Books, Sydney, 2007:

) and “Ongoing Palestinian Genocide” in “The Plight of the Palestinians (edited by William Cook, Palgrave Macmillan, London, 2010: ). He has published a revised and updated 2008 version of his 1998 book “Jane Austen and the Black Hole of British History” (see:  ) as biofuel-, globalization- and climate-driven global food price increases threaten a greater famine catastrophe than the man-made famine in British-ruled India that killed 6-7 million Indians in the “forgotten” World War 2 Bengal Famine (see recent BBC broadcast involving Dr Polya, Economics Nobel Laureate Professor Amartya Sen and others:  ;  Gideon Polya:  ; Gideon Polya Writing: ; Gideon Polya, Wikipedia: ) . When words fail one can say it in pictures – for images of Gideon Polya’s huge paintings for the Planet, Peace, Mother and Child see: and  .


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