Scott Morrison may have made a mistake on a second-order issue by saying he could move our embassy in Israel to Jerusalem.
But Labor is sure making a bigger one by telling the Prime Minister to listen to our Muslim neighbours and back off.
And Labor’s mistake is far worse than Morrison’s.
Scrapping the suggested move now would make Australia look weak and unprincipled. It would make us seem to kowtow to Islamic terrorists, and to notorious anti-Semites like Malaysia’s Prime Minister.
It would be shameful. Dangerous. Verging on treasonous.
Even if you don’t care two cents whether our embassy in Israel is in Tel Aviv or Jerusalem, surely you — and Labor — must care about Australia’s power and reputation.
Yes, as I said at the time, Morrison made a mistake in the last week of campaigning for the by-election in Wentworth, where 12.5 per cent of voters are Jews.
Desperate, he suddenly announced he was thinking of moving our embassy to Jerusalem, Israel’s capital, rather than keep it in Tel Aviv as Muslim nations demand.
Morrison deserved all the criticism he’s had. His move seemed deeply cynical vote-buying, and how does this help Australian voters? Does shifting the embassy in Israel put food on their table?
Indeed, critics, such as former Nationals leader Barnaby Joyce, were right to complain that this could instead cost us trade with Muslim countries like Indonesia that hate Israel so much that they refuse to recognise it exists.
So it’s happened. Indonesia is now punishing Australia by delaying the signing of a free- trade deal.
Other counter-arguments are rubbish, of course. No, moving our embassy to West Jerusalem will not destroy the “peace process” between Israel and the Palestinians because there’s no process to destroy.
Read the article by Andrew Bolt in the Herald Sun.