Unfortunately the report issued by the Canadian Parliamentary Coalition to Combat Anti-Semitism (CPCCA), an ad-hoc group of Members of Parliament, fails on both counts.
Since its formation two years ago, CPCCA restricted its investigation by focusing only on anti-Semitism and ignored racism against Indigenous peoples, racialized groups and Islamophobia. CPCCA also ignored the recent report from Statistics Canada showing that hate crime incidents against West Asians and Arabs have doubled in 2009 over 2008.
CPCCA only heard testimony from pro-Israel groups and refused to hear testimony from many other groups including Independent Jewish Voices, Canadian Council of Muslim Women, Canadians for Justice and Peace in the Middle East, Canadian Union of Postal Workers, Faculty for Palestine, Peace and Social Action Committee of the Society of Friends (Quakers), United Jewish People’s Order and the Canadian Arab Federation.
Regrettably by discriminating in this manner, CPCCA sent a message that it grants supremacy to some Canadians over others and that it gives priority to combating anti-Semitism over the combating of all other forms of racism.
By targeting campuses, CPCCA is attempting to silence criticism of Israel at a time when a growing number of Canadians, especially youth and university students, are rallying in support of the Palestinian people’s quest for freedom and equality.
Israel has maintained a 44-year-old illegal occupation of East Jerusalem, the West Bank and Gaza; has imposed collective punishment on the 1.6 million civilians of Gaza through an inhuman siege in violation of the Fourth Geneva Convention; and has legislated 20 laws that discriminate against 25 percent of its citizens who are not Jewish.
Israel commits all these violations of international law and international humanitarian law while claiming to represent all Jews in the world. By doing so Israel is promoting the false view that all Jews are responsible for Israel’s policies and crimes.
Sadly, CPCCA’s attempt to shield Israel from much-deserved criticism only supports Israel’s continued promotion of anti-Semitism.
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