Peta Credlin: (A vigil by Melbourne’s Jewish community) has protested the silence of women and human rights organisations, particularly the United Nations which has failed to condemn or even acknowledge the sexual violence perpetrated against Israeli women and children.
Joining me now from the vigil, Shadow Education Minister, Senator for Victoria, Sarah Henderson.
I’ll get to the UN and others in a moment if I can, Sarah, but we know many of these women in Israel were horrifically raped and – I’m mindful of the time, I can’t discuss much of this on air – but horrifically raped, those rapes was seen by eyewitnesses who survived the attacks.
And then they were basically executed at point blank range. This is something we cannot stay silent about is it?
Senator Henderson: Good evening Peta and great to join you – absolutely not. And that was the message of tonight’s vigil.
Hundreds of Jewish women and some men we’re here to say we cannot stay silent.
We have a duty to speak out and I was very honoured to join a number of very prominent women and also Kylie Moore-Gilbert, of course, who’s an incredible woman herself, who was held hostage in Iran for nearly three years, speaking about out about the horrific and abhorrent acts against Jewish and Israeli women.
And it was a very, very powerful vigil tonight Peta, I have to say.
Peta Credlin: I’m looking at some of the signs there Sarah. And there’s a woman holding a sign that says “Me too, unless you’re a Jew.”
Senator Henderson: Well, that’s right. And I say where are all the women’s groups? Where are the human rights groups? It took the United Nations women’s organization, 57 days to even acknowledge these atrocities.
And there was a young woman who spoke tonight and her very close childhood friend, was one of the young soldiers who was brutally raped and is now a hostage, hopefully still alive and hearing her words was just soul destroying.
Also, Peta, the Jewish community here in Melbourne and in all parts of Australia are devastated by the horrendous level of anti-Semitism and anti-Israel hatred in this country.
I mean, I had a woman I was just speaking to her before, she was in tears. She can’t even tell her co- workers that she’s Jewish.
There is so much fear. And so there were so many brave women standing up and saying we have to speak out there are no excuses.
We cannot qualify this in any way. We have to let the world know what happened to Israeli and Jewish women on that terrible day.
And, of course, in my speech, I also acknowledged the atrocities against Palestinian women by Hamas, as well.
Let’s not beat around the bush. Hamas is an evil terrorist organization, a pure evil, and I’m just so proud to be part of the vigil tonight.
Peta Credlin: What pressure could be put on by the Australian government, the Albanese Government to really hold the UN to account because we’ve seen the UN speak out on sexual harassment really, really strongly – we are talking the rape of women, then point blank execution but we’re talking about the defiling of corpses, for God’s sake, Sarah?
Senator Henderson: Look where are they? And I think this is why Jewish women have stood up and said, “Your silence is not acceptable. There are no excuses”.
And the members of the United Nations women’s group, have a responsibility to speak out for all women.
Why are they differentiating? And where all those women’s groups you know, the “Me Too” movement? Where are they Peta? Nowhere to be seen.
Peta Credlin: Sorry to jump in. I’ve got to get off. Now for Andrew Bolt. Appreciate you joining us there tonight.