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Hatred in Canada

Hatred in Canada

It is somewhat surprising that the anti-Semitism in Canada has gone largely unnoticed.

by Jerusalem Post Editorial

With the rising tide of anti-Jewish hostility in Europe getting so much attention in recent months, it is somewhat surprising that an equally worrisome trend across the Atlantic has gone largely unnoticed -- mounting anti-Semitism in Canada.

With 360,000 Jews, Canada is home to the fifth largest Jewish community outside of Israel, and America's northern neighbor has long prided itself for its tolerance, openness, and freedom. But that legacy is now under assault amid a spate of recent, and deeply troubling, incidents.

Over the past 12 months, there have been more than 300 anti-Semitic incidents in Canada, or nearly one every day.

Over the past 12 months, there have been more than 300 anti-Semitic incidents in Canada, or nearly one every day. Four synagogues have been the targets of arson attacks, Jewish day schools have received bomb threats, and there have been numerous property crimes and hate propaganda directed against Jews and their institutions. The most serious incident occurred in July, when David Rosenzweig, an Orthodox Jew, was murdered outside a kosher restaurant in Toronto by a neo-Nazi skinhead.

Jewish students on Canadian campuses have also been particularly hard-hit, with a string of anti-Israel and anti-Semitic incidents. Take, for example, Montreal's Concordia University. In September, a riot broke out at the school forcing the cancellation of a speech by former Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu. During the melee, a Holocaust survivor was physically assaulted and kicked in the groin.

On December 2, Concordia's student union voted to revoke the status of the Jewish student group Hillel as a recognized campus organization and suspended its annual funding. This has prompted Concordia Hillel members to file a civil suit against the student union.

The situation on other campuses is hardly better. In fact, it has gotten so bad that 100 prominent Canadians signed an ad in the December 17 Globe and Mail taken out by a group called Solidarity with Jews at Risk stating, "An increasing number of students in universities and colleges say that they fear reprisals if they challenge prevailing pro-Palestinian, anti-Israel views. If they argue that Israel has the right to exist, they are often greeted with threats, even physical assault."

Rhetorical attacks on Jews have also taken place with increasing frequency. Earlier this month, Saskatchewan Indian leader David Ahenakew referred to Jews as a "disease" and sought to justify the Holocaust, asserting, "The Jews [expletive] near owned all of Germany prior to the war. That's how Hitler came in. He was going to make [expletive] sure that the Jews didn't take over Germany or Europe. That's why he fried 6 million of those guys, you know." Only after coming under a wave of criticism did Ahenakew apologize for his remarks.

The Canadian government has not exactly helped things through its clumsy handling of a number of Israel-related matters. In early October, the Canadian Customs and Revenue Agency confiscated newsletters published by the Ayn Rand Institute entitled In Moral Defense of Israel, claiming they had to determine whether the material constituted "hate propaganda." The newsletters were released a few days later.

Federal authorities have also been targeting the Canadian branch of Magen David Adom, seeking to cancel its tax-exempt status because some of the ambulances it has donated to MDA here are used in the territories, as if geographical distinctions should be drawn when it comes to saving human lives.

And yet, when it came to terrorist groups such as Hizbullah, Canada's authorities showed far less alacrity in clamping down on their activities. In October, Prime Minister Jean Chretien went so far as to attend a conference in Lebanon alongside Hizbullah leader Sheikh Hassan Nasrallah. Then, on November 27, when the Canadian government announced that it was adding six terrorist groups, such as Hamas, to its list of prohibited organizations, it incredibly refused to include Hizbullah. Only once B'nai B'rith Canada took the government to court was the Chretien administration embarrassed into reversing its decision.

It is time for the Canadian government to take a firmer stand against anti-Semitism.

For a country that has spent the past two decades fostering multiculturalism and decrying xenophobia, the spate of anti-Semitism in Canada is especially disconcerting. The fact that it has received less global attention than it deserves does not take away from the danger which it poses to Canadian society and its democratic institutions.

One Jew was already murdered earlier this year in the heart of Toronto because of his identity. It is time for the Canadian government to step in and take a firmer stand against anti-Semitism, before this age-old prejudice claims any more victims.

Reprinted with permission from the Jerusalem Post.

Published: December 28, 2002


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Visitor Comments: 40

(36) Kim, March 11, 2014 7:52 PM

Anti-semitism in Canada

As a Canadian lover of all kinds of people and who is also triracial ( including just a little bit Jewish on my mother's side), It makes me very upset when society turns a blind eye to hate and wants to pretend it will go away. I have been told that hate against Jews is on the rise and I believe it. Hate, discrimination, lies, misinformation and so forth is never right and even if the comment does not affect me personally, I speak up because it is wrong! Shalom.

(35) Anonymous, May 29, 2012 8:57 PM

Antisemitism indoctrination worsens

Many families and leaders still indoctrinate there kids in antisemitism (1) The mosque is a center for antisemitc indoctrination where Moslem's raise funds to wipe out the Jews which is tax deductable in most countiys (2) Many Catholics still consider Jews as the killer of Christ. In my teens I was asked by my neighber how I could remain Jewish since my neighbors kids were taught by parents and the church that Jews killed Christ. (3) Saddist is that many Jews think that Jews must not defend theirselves against terrorism in Israel since this is unfair to the freedom palastinian fighters. Also most Jews do not have enough knowledge and do not care to realize the falsehood of this support for terrrorists. These people refuse to accept the Muslim hatred for Jews and the psychologic and phyiscal damage of daily rockets from Gaza enter Israel and terrorize the citizens of Israel. If cuba was sending rockets into the USA everyday I am sure Americans would not symphatize with the cubans. (5) Also, leaders in most countries do not support Israel. Even President Obama who states he supports Israel demanded Israel stop settlements for 1 year, but refused to apply pressure on the PLO to begin Peach talks until the year was almost over. Then Obama and his staff again demanded that despite no PLO meeting with Israel that Israel must nog refused to stop building homes for their citizens in the west bank portion of Israel and in Jerusalem. , He continues to fund the PLO when they refused to meet for peace talks and when the PLO went against his demand to not seek statehood in the UN. The world does not see the Jews as moral people since Jew wants another Holocaust. All of us must make antisemiitsm problems awarness increase or we will continue to see greater antisemitism.

(34) david, August 1, 2011 3:52 AM

Israel Needs To Earn Its Respect

I live in Canada, but grew up in the USA. I can say that there is a healthy pro-Israel sentiment in both countries. However, any nation, be it Canada, the USA, or Israel must earn its respect, and then once earned, work hard to keep it. Israel's attack on the flotilla in international waters (an International war crime) did not help Israel keep her earned respect, and actually was one event out of many in recent years, which have caused Israel to lose respect in many people's minds. Israel cannot lower herself to the level of "thugs" and expect to have the highest graces of the people of the world. Holding a nation accountable for its actions IS NOT anti-semitism. If Canada or the USA had committed the attack on the flotilla, it would have put either of those nations in disrepute internationally. Israel cannot expect the people of the world to allow it to commit atrocities like this, and still somehow expect to venerate Israel, or bow to it as if it is G-D. Israel must walk humbly before the world, if it wants to be thought of as representing G-D in the world. Pride, and haughtiness go before a fall. Could it be that the war against Gog and MaGog, or Amegeddon, has to be faught because all the nations of the world as so fed up with Israel's pride, that they have finally had enough of being ruled by a brute beast? I would rather have Israel humble herself and repent for her sins, and her wickedness. Then, once humbled, and once we can see a real transparency in her, then maybe G-D will be able to use her as a true example to the world, and then maybe He will fill her with His Spirit, so that she can be light to the world. Lately, it seems that Israel wants to expand the darkness, by demanding its wishes on the rest of the world, and resorting to extremely poorly executed military tactics when she can't get her way. Nobody respects a bully. Nobody. So if Israel acts like the bully on the playground, she might get her way, but she will not get respect.

izzy, March 22, 2012 3:03 PM

pathetic self hating jew

Israel's attack on the flotilla??? You got to be kidding - are you a suicidal Jew?

Anonymous, March 25, 2012 5:45 PM

The problem

I cant speak about Canada but I can tell you USA is full like him. Is very sad.

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