White supremacists 'whipping up ethnic tensions'

The Daily Telegraph, Australia/November 27, 2006
By Luke Mcllyeen

White supremacists are whipping up ethnic tensions in Sydney's Cronulla a year after the race riots, handing out hate pamphlets and plotting anniversary protests in a bid to cause a repeat of the December 11, 2005 violence.The Daily Telegraph can reveal the extreme right-wing Australia First Party - blamed for fuelling last year's riot - has found a local candidate to stand in the March state election.

John Moffat, an aged-care worker who moved to the Sutherland Shire from the Eastern Suburbs five years ago, will stand against Liberal MP Malcolm Kerr.

Mr Moffat has promised to ban immigration and remove police from Cronulla.

"There is a hidden depth of anger in the Shire - multiculturalism is not working and we want to turn back the tide," Mr Moffat told The Daily Telegraph in a rare interview.

"A lot of white Australians turned out to celebrate their culture on December 11 last year but unfortunately, with the flow of suds, things went awry."

With financial backing from Australia First, Mr Moffat is letterboxing pamphlets promising to rid Australia of non-Anglo immigrants if he is elected.

The fanatical pamphlets warn that Australia has given in to "Asianisation" and brand Police Commissioner Ken Moroney a "multiculturalist" who persecuted white youths in the "civil uprising of December 11".

"Under Malcolm Fraser, the Liberal government imported supposed 'refugees' from Lebanon; these 'refugees' went on to form the Muslim enclave in Lakemba," the pamphlet adds.

Bizarrely, the pamphlets also call on the Labor Party to explain whether its branch members were among the Middle Eastern thugs behind the revenge attacks which followed the riots.

Mr Moffat said he had received a wave of public support - but then admitted the response in the Shire was "fifty-fifty".

Despite claims of widespread support, Australia First goes to extraordinary lengths to protect its members, who can be contacted via post-office box and an anonymous mobile phone number.

The Daily Telegraph met Mr Moffat in Cronulla yesterday. He was joined by notorious right-wing activist Jim Saleam, who heads Australia First.

Mr Saleam said: "Sydney is ethnically ghetto-ised and Cronulla has become a place that showed resistance to pro-immigration."

In July, Mr Saleam was accused of trying to intimidate Sydney lawyer George Newhouse, a leading advocate for asylum-seekers.

The Australia First Party is not registered in NSW so will sponsor Mr Moffat as an independent to run in the March election.

Asked if he was an unashamed racist, Mr Moffat said: "Racist is such an outdated word, I can't believe it's still being used.

"I'm doing my best to provide a lightning rod. Outsiders question why Cronulla is so white but hey never ask why Lakemba is so Lebanese."

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