Last Sunday a gang of Middle Eastern youths, believed to be of Lebanese extract, attacked two lifeguards at Cronulla beach. Sydney radio talk shows have been steaming with outrage against the unwarranted attacks on the two men on duty to protect swimmers from mishaps. According to a Lebanese community leader, the radio jocks have been unduly provocative in their comments.
Inevitably the redneck brigade decided to form a 5000 strong vigilante corp to punish ‘outsiders’, namely anyone of Middle Eastern appearances at Cronulla Beach. Over the week they used SMS to gather 'members' around for the showdown to “take back our beaches”.
The question that is being asked is, whose is the “our”?
Five innocent people, who happened to look like Middle Easterners, have been hurt, including, as reported by the media, a young girl though police refused to confirm that. Two required hospitalisation.
The sad part is the real culprits were not there, and innocents who went to the beach oblivious of the SMS-ed mob became the victims of the redneck bashing. This is the tragedy of mob rule where commonsense went out of the window. There was the inevitable drinking which didn’t help the situation.
Police and ambulances were also pelted with beer bottles and shoved around when they stepped in to save the victims. I saw on TV an unusual Aussie scene, where police used batons to whip the mob into retreat.
So, the disappointing ingredients were some hoodlums bashing lifeguards, radio talk shows turning the hooliganism into a racial issue, rednecks with SMS battle call, and innocents providing the targets for the 2nd batch of gangsters.
In other words, one act of hooliganism responded by another act of equal hooliganism. Only the innocents lost. What was that Malay saying about elephants and the mouse deer?
Then guess what, strikeback occurred just a few hours ago - yes sir, Act No 3.
Up to 50 vehicles with passengers, believed to be Lebanese youth, armed with baseball bats and iron bars had been smashing parked cars at Marouba Beach. A TV channel reported that a man was stabbed while walking with 3 women, who were threatened with rape.
One of the TV reporter himself was seething with rage while reporting the scene at Marouba Beach. He could barely contained his anger, undoubtedly against the Lebanese hoodlums. This is not good for the Lebanese community.
The New South Wales Commissioner came out to condemn the Cronulla mob attack against people of Middle Easten appearance, and a Cronulla resident expressed on TV his shame at being an Australian for witnessing the disgraceful behaviour of the redneck brigade, where innocents were walloped.
The situation in Sydney southeast is still very tense where police has setup road blocks to prevent further infiltration of more hoodlum reinforcements. One 4WD attempted to mow down 2 policemen manning a road block. There have been sporadic clashes between the two groups. The media has also reported crowd trouble at the beachside suburbs of Kyeemagh and Brighton Le Sands, in Sydney's south.
Last year several Lebanese youths received extremely severe jail sentences for pack-raping Caucasian women. Again in those incidents, mobile phones were employed. When they were raping a victim they would phone their gang to join them in the heinous crime. Apparently those youths claimed they were doing it for their Iraqi brethrens, but they were nothing more than lustful criminals.
Unfortunately Lebanese youth gangs have introduced a level of violence into the Sydney southeast region that has angered locals. In their misguided ways some Lebanese youths have taken it out on innocent people, claiming that they were angry about Australia's involvement in the Iraqi War, but in reality were attempting to mask their criminal behaviour under the guise of a noble act.