Sunday, November 20, 2016

Open letter to Mr Peter Dutton: you need to put your money where your mouth is on the subject of extremism

Dear Hon Peter Dutton, Minister for immigration

I read on your portfolio your latest comments regarding the mass migration of Lebanese Muslims during the 70s. I found your “attack” on Malcolm Fraser’s brave decision to be disgraceful!

While I agree that there is a serious problem with sections of Muslims migrated from north Lebanon, I have to disagree that the reason of this extremism is caused by being born as extremist. There is no evidence of this.
To the contrary, all reliable academic studies indicate that these extremist became like this after decades of intense brainwashing.

Academics have been warning the government about the impact of Wahhabi ideology. I can refer to the countless studies by fine academics who warned the government at the time of John Howard that extremist ideology was spreading thanks to the Saudi embassy which spent $2.7 billion in three decades to promote extremism among our youth.

Instead of taking actions to curb the Saudi spending, your party (through the Howard government) took the strategic decision in 2006, of entering into a strong alliance with Muslim extremist organisations.

These extremist organisations are lead by Lebanese background Muslims. The Howard government, in a bid to divide Muslim vote (largely backing Labor and to lesser extent the Greens), offered millions of dollars in public funding to extreme Muslim organisations. In return these organisations would ask Muslims to vote Liberals.

The effect of this alliance was almost immediate. Lebanese Moslem Association and other organisations of extremists started directing Muslims to vote for your party.

Your party’s alliance with Muslim extremist organisations got stronger and stronger. Since 2011, the alliance with Muslim extreme organisations lead by Lebanese Moslem Association, had publicly directed Muslim voters to vote exclusively to your party. In return, this alliance of Muslim extreme organisations has secured public funding of millions of dollars annually.

If you really think that the late Malcolm Fraser made the mistake of allowing Muslim Lebanese to migrate to Australia, then you need to start correcting this mistake by ending the strong alliance between your party and these extreme organisations.

You also need to reassess the way public funding is managed by stopping the funding going to extreme organisations and being used to brainwash and recruit more extremists.

Actions are louder than any talks. Political parties need to start putting the money where their mouths are.

I have no doubt that you will not take any action to correct your party’s grave mistake of contributing to the spread of extremism in this country.

Your latest comments show panic and desperation after Trump’s win. You now are faced with newly emerged right-wing small parties like One Nation, Shooters and Fishers, Christian Democrats etc.

For decades your party has exercised double standards on this issue. On one hand you allied yourself with Muslim extreme organisations in order to divide Muslim votes and on the other hand you were actively involved in spreading racism and Islamophobia. You tried to juggle too many balls at once!

The bi-election result in Orange is a clear indication that voters are sick of your Hippocratic policies. Voters are now demanding concrete actions and results, not only rhetoric.

The fact is that your party is still the strongest supporter of Muslim extreme organisations. Until you prove the opposite, conservative voters will continue to migrate to smaller right-wing parties. Again, you need urgent action not rhetoric.

My advice is to isolate extreme Lebanese Muslim forces. Stop the funding! Stop promoting them. Stop consulting them and most of all, stop the Saudi funding.

Maybe after you have taken these actions, conservative voters will regain faith in you. If you have the ambition to win in the next election and beyond, Australians need to regain their faith in you.

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