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RED Card Israeli Racism has told the Australian Jewish Association (AJA) that they “should know better” after they called for their national football team to boycott Friday’s Asian Cup group match against Palestine.
The AJA demanded today that the Football Federation Australia (FFA) take immediate action and accused the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) of using football as a political tool as it attempts to “erase Israel from its history books altogether.”
RCIR told the Star that is in fact the AJA who are politicising football and told them that they will not succeed.
“We are dismayed by the racist, colonialist demand that the Socceroos should boycott their Asian Cup fixture with Palestine,” said Red Card Israeli Racism. “The Australian Jewish Association should know better.
“The achievements of the Palestinian national football team — in the face of perennial obstruction and harassment — are truly heroic and have brought precious moments of joy to Palestinians everywhere.
“The beautiful game has granted a measure of recognition to a people whose national culture is all too often suppressed. No-one should stand in the way of this, particularly during the festival of football on display in the UAE.
“It is the AJA that is trying to ‘politicise’ football. They will not succeed, and we look forward to an excellent match on Friday.”
Palestine were admitted to Fifa in 1998 and qualified for their first Asian Cup in 2015 in Australia.
In a statement released today, the AJA said that should the game be played, it would render “Australia complicit with the AFC’s political bias against Israel.”
“The Australian national football team, the Socceroos, should not play ‘Palestine’ in the Asian Confederation Cup 2019 this Friday, 11 January 2019 in the United Arab Emirates,” a press release from the AJA read.
“Soccer is being blatantly politicised by the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) as ‘Palestine’ is not a country recognised by the international community.
“The Asian Football Confederation (AFC), dominated by Arab interests, should not have admitted ‘Palestine’ as a member.
“In 1974 the AFC expelled Israel as a member. Its expulsion could rightly be characterised as anti-semitic.
“The AFC has even attempted to erase Israel from its history books altogether. Israel participated in the Asian Cup [which is played every four years] in 1956, 1960 and 1964, actually winning the Asian Cup in 1964. Yet the AFC’s promotional video for the last Asian Cup [held in Australia in 2015] showcased all past winners but ignored Israel’s win in 1964.
“The admission of ‘Palestine’ as a participating country is the other side of the same anti-semitic coin. ‘Palestine’ is in part controlled by Hamas, a proscribed terrorist organisation and in part by the Palestinian Authority which incites and rewards the murder of Jews in Israel.
“Australia’s participation in the Asian Cup in these circumstances legitimises the politicisation of the Cup as it renders Australia complicit with the AFC’s political bias against Israel.”
Australia is one of several countries globally which do not recognise Palestinian statehood despite having diplomatic relations.
“The FFA board should not allow the Socceroos to play Palestine,” AJA president David Adler said today. “If compelled to do so, then at the very least it must do so under protest by sending a clear and unambiguous message to Fifa and the football world that the AFC’s bias and anti-semitic policies and the politicisation of the Asian Cup for propaganda purposes are wholly unacceptable to Australia and should not be tolerated.”
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