More than 1,000 people rallied for Israel this week in one of the biggest shows of solidarity with the Jewish state ever held in Western Australia.
The majority of those attending the launch of Friends of Israel Western Australia in Perth last Sunday were non-Jews, including dozens of local, state and federal politicians.
Chief among them was Foreign Minister Stephen Smith, who recently locked horns with Jewish community leaders over Israel's alleged forging of four Australian passports and the Gaza flotilla.
Some saw his presence as politically motivated, given Australians go to the polls on August 21.
The new group aims to support Israel's right to exist in peace and ensure accurate, fair Middle East reporting.
Israeli Ambassador Yuval Rotem travelled more than 3700 km from Canberra to attend the rally.