Each year on the closest Sunday to 17 January (the supposed date of the last sighting of Raoul Wallenberg, the City of Port Phillip hosts a commemoration service to help perpetuate the memory of Raoul Wallenberg and the work he did in saving tens of thousands (estimated 100,000) of Jews in Hungary during the later years of World War 2.
This year on 13 January, Phil Symons, Co-Chair of Action Wallenberg of B'nai B'rith Raoul Wallenberg Unit chaired the gathering. The meeting was addressed by: Mayor of City of Port Phillip, Cr Dick Gross, Councillor Marcus Pearl, Dr Frank Vajda, Holocaust survivor who has dedicated his life to honouring Raoul Wallenberg, Dr Peter Barta, Holocaust survivor, who gave a moving survivor testimony of his experience as a child in hiding in Hungary. Approximately 100 attendees were present. The vote of thanks was given by Simone Markus, Co-Chair of B'nai B'rith Raoul Wallenberg Unit.
Interview with Dr. Tony Weldon, Chairman of B'nai B'rith's Courage to Care, on J-AIR's Shabbat Shalom Drive.
On Thursday 13th December, BBVic hosted the final Speakers Forum for the year. Over 120 people were in attendance to hear our guest speaker, Zeddy Lawrence (National Editor of The Australian Jewish News), share his incredible insights on the topic 'Behind the News: the Role of the Jewish Press,' followed by a Q&A.
BBVic Presentations were awarded that evening to:
Evelyn & Malcolm Flitman - George Huppert Memorial Award
P/P Ruth Figdor - B'nai B'rith Recognition Award
P/P Leah Black - Certificate of Appreciation
It was also announced that the annual Leah Black Youth Art Prize will now be included in the BBVic Jewish Youth Art Competition.
These four BBVic members encapsulate the tenets of B’nai B’rith with their work both within the Jewish and wider communities.
Following on from the Pittsburgh Synagogue Shooting on 27 October, I reiterate that B’nai B’rith Australia/New Zealand shares in the grief suffered at the senseless loss of life of eleven Jewish worshippers in Pittsburgh on Saturday morning. The rise of antisemitism is extremely troubling, and the perpetrator of this vile crime will be brought to justice, although the 11 lives lost cannot be recovered.
Australia’s gun laws have prevented mass shootings since they were invoked in 1996 after the Port Arthur Massacre where 35 innocent lives were lost. We have had gun deaths, but usually not more than one death in any incident. I fail to understand why the US Congress cannot look to Australia for a fine example of gun management and overturn “The Right to Bear Arms.”
I am troubled by the rise in attempts to have our extremely effective gun laws overturned or even just watered down by political and other interests within our safe Australian community.
Please see the following links….
I am also concerned that gun theft is a major problem, as it is stolen firearms that are most likely to be used in violent crimes.
See also, Facebook post from Mark Dreyfus including responses….
Read more about it at: https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2018/oct/23/gun-lobby-makes-no-mention-of-guns-in-victorian-election-ad-blitz
If you agree with my outrage, I implore you to write to your members of Australian parliament, both Federal and State.
President - B’nai B’rith Australia/New Zealand
Senior VP - B’nai B’rith International