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NEO-NAZIS EXPLOIT VOICE

‘Loony extremists’ spread Voice conspiracies

Conspiracy theorists have targeted Indigenous activist Mark Leibler and former Liberal Party spokesperson for Indigenous affairs Julian Leeser.

Mark Leibler and former Liberal Party spokesperson for Indigenous affairs Julian Leeser are frequently identified by conspiracy theorists as the "masterminds" behind the Voice.
Mark Leibler and former Liberal Party spokesperson for Indigenous affairs Julian Leeser are frequently identified by conspiracy theorists as the "masterminds" behind the Voice.

Antisemitic conspiracy theories and hate speech are being propagated by far-right and conspiracy theorists opposed to the Voice to Parliament initiative.

These theories, brought to light in a report by Crikey, claim that the Voice is part of a plot by various entities, including the United Nations, the World Economic Forum, as well as prominent Australian Jewish individuals, to undermine Australian sovereignty.

Conspiracy theorists have targeted Indigenous activist Mark Leibler and former Liberal Party spokesperson for Indigenous affairs Julian Leeser, as the masterminds behind the Voice.

Leibler told The AJN, “These groups and individuals are simply exploiting the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Voice to Parliament discussion to regurgitate antisemitic conspiracy theories and hate speech they’ve trotted out time and time again.

“You don’t need to dig too deep to find that it all emanates from the same loony extremists, including those who associate with white supremacists.

“Unfortunately some extreme elements of the Jewish community continue to fuel this sort of rhetoric,” Leibler said.

Executive Council of Australian Jewry co-CEO Peter Wertheim told The AJN that there is bound to be extensive public debate about the Voice, “as there should be on anything as fundamental as a change to the Australian constitution”.

“However, that debate is now cynically being used as a cloak by neo-Nazis to exploit the paranoid fears, insecurities and fantasies of fringe conspiracy groups in the community in order to promote the Nazis’ hate-filled racist ideology,” Wertheim said.

“As with any conspiracy theories, antisemitism is very much a part of their message. The number of people promoting these conspiracy falsehoods is small, but they are using social media algorithms to give the impression of a much larger movement. The best answer is to expose them for what they are. Thankfully, the vast majority of Australians are immune to this sort of childish rubbish.”

Neo-Nazi groups in the past have shown a propensity for latching onto conspiracy theories, using them as a means to further their agenda and the Voice has shown to be no different.

Taking advantage of societal vulnerabilities and uncertainties, conspiracy theorists have historically exploited public fears, disseminated misinformation, and undermined trust in institutions.

Their methods encompass a wide range of tactics, including cherry-picking evidence and distorting facts to create elaborate webs of interconnected falsehoods.

Federal Member for Macnamara Josh Burns said, “It is beyond appalling, but not surprising, that neo-Nazis are targeting Jewish supporters of the Voice.

“Mark Leibler has, for decades, served with distinction advancing reconciliation in this country. Our community is immensely proud of his efforts and those of other communal organisations involved in promoting reconciliation,” he added.

Burns told The AJN, “To be honest, this motivates me even further to campaign for an Indigenous Voice to Parliament, because it is the right thing to do.”

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