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Happy Passover, Friends and Allies | CAEF Bulletin, April 22, 2024

Happy Passover

Passover is rightfully identified as the Freedom Festival, celebrating the Jewish exodus from slavery in Egypt, as well as honouring spring, renewal, rebirth. The Seder table of plenty reminds us of humbler times as we read of our ancestors wandering in the desert. We welcome strangers to our homes, ever mindful that we were (and often still are) strangers in the land. We retell our story, recount past seders, remember missing friends and family, and renew our commitment to Zion, to Israel.

This year, we must also ask; why is this Seder different from all others? It is because our hearts are broken over the massacre that took place in Israel on October 7, 2023 and we cry out for those injured, kidnapped, and harmed, displaced, and suffering huge loss. We pray for the recovery of all Israelis and the peace so much desired by Israel.

Here are some resources offered by the American Zionist Movement to enhance your 2024 Seder and to connect us all to Israel.

AZM Resources for Passover, click here


Why It Feels Like 1930’s Again

A Message from Anita Bromberg, President, CAEF

The word Juden scrawled on a restaurant door. Windows of a synagogue smashed. Private Jewish homes vandalized. Kill the Jews written on bus stops Synagogues up in flames. Anti Israel marchers praising the October 7 pogrom that murdered in cold blood over 1200 mainly Jews. School and university students being harassed Jews being assaulted on city streets. Jewish professionals being shunned from jobs. Jews being held hostages and tortured while too many remain silent. Jews denied the right to defend themselves while leaders remain silent. This is all happening now but it is not new. We have seen all this before Now as Jews around the world are about to sit down to their Passover Seders during which they will call out the ancient plea Let My People Go, the echoes of the past are all too real. This is the reality for Jews today as we see history repeating itself.

Read article by Warren Kinsella, Toronto Sun, April 21, 2024, on how Anti-Israel protesters have become more radical, and openly embrace terror groups.

Read report from Canary Mission which documented 10 cases of academic antisemitism among Canadian university faculty and notes implications for the academy, for Jewish students and the entire country as such Jew hatred has been normalized.

Read personal story from Sanne DeWitt, Holocaust survivor, Zionist Activist, Editor of IABCE Newsletter, comparing her Holocaust experience with Antisemitism at Berkeley. This OpEd appeared in CNN.


“They came to kill us, We won, Let’s eat!” Is Only Part of the Story

Rabbi Cary Kozberg of Ohio, suggests there is truth to the old joke, the summary of Jewish historical experiences. Read his article in JNS, April 3, 2024.

Israel’s Response to Iranian Attack

by Charles Cooke, Government Relations, CAEF

The Iranian attack on Israel was a paradigm shift for Middle Eastern state conflict. Aside from the over three hundred drone, cruise and ballistic missiles ( not rockets ) launched, it is may have been the first time a neighbouring state principally aimed at Israeli cities. Previous conflict between  Arab states and Israel applied an unwritten rule-the battle was on the battlefield and cities were not targets. 

With the Iranian attack, all that has changed. What’s worse, Jerusalem was a target. Israel, thus, had the absolute right to respond. And did.


CAEF Supported Community Rally—Let My People Go!

April 7 Rally featuring Avi Attali and Daphna Pollak, emcees, Donna Holbrook, ICEJ Canada, Kevin Vuong, MP, and Pierre Poilievre

CAEF at Neighborhood Rally for Israel, Condemns Iran

April 14 Rally featuring Guidy Maman, Organizer, James Pasternak, city Councilor, Kevin Vuong, MP, and Michael Teper, CAEF board member

CAEF at Yalla Breakfast with Secure Canada Spokesperson

Guest speaker, Sheryl Shapira, CEO, Secure Canada
Guest speaker, Sheryl Shapira, CEO, Secure Canada
Eynat Katz and Sophie Milman
Eynat Katz and Sophie Milman

Two Important Stories in the National Post

It is imperative that all Canadians read this letter, published twice in the National Post, addressed to Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, which begins, J’accuse, and lest we forget that was the opening line by Emile Zola addressed to the President of France, accusing him of antisemitism in regards to the Dreyfus Affair in 1898.

Signed by dozens of Canadians, the open letter accuses PM Trudeau of ignoring rising antisemitism.

Time for a National Summit to Combat Antisemitism

The second item in the National Post to which we draw attention is a summary of the recent press conference organized by Marvin Rotrand, co-founder of United Against Hate Canada, a former Montreal city Councillor and former National Director at B’nai Brith Canada. The event brought together journalists and activists in the call to the Government of Canada, to conduct a Second National Summit to Combat Antisemitism.

Rotrand shared a letter signed by 200 Canadians, including members of several provincial legislatures, Mayors, Councillors, School Trustees, spiritual and community leaders and engaged citizen calling for Second National Summit to Combat Antisemitism.

The letter referred to rising antisemitism across the country and was also directed to all Premiers.

CAEF’s Executive Director was present for the virtual press conference.

Senator Housakos shared a motion that he was bringing to the Senate this past week:

February 29, 2024—That the Senate take note:

(a) of the data from Statistics Canada and Jewish organizations such as the Centre for Israel and Jewish Affairs, Friends of Simon Wiesenthal Centre and B’nai Brith indicating a shocking rise in antisemitic incidents across Canada over the past years;

(b) of a global surge in antisemitism, to which Canada has not been immune, since the October 7th terrorist attack by Hamas and Israel’s duty to respond to it;

(c) that since October 2023, Canada’s Jewish community has witnessed shots fired at its schools, arson attempts at its communal buildings, boycott efforts and vandalism targeting private businesses, simply because their owners are Jewish, and the intimidation of its students at universities;

(d) that police departments across the country all report major and unprecedented increases in hate crimes since October 2023, with the Jewish community being by far the most targeted;

(e) that the Government of Canada has appointed Deborah Lyons, Canada’s former Ambassador to Israel, as the new Special Envoy on Preserving Holocaust Remembrance and Combatting Antisemitism;

(f) that the authority vested in the Special Envoy’s office permits her to be uniquely placed to convene and chair a second national summit to combat antisemitism; and

(g) that a second national summit to combat antisemitism would provide a valuable forum for stakeholders representing all levels of government, civil servants, law enforcement agencies, educators and community leaders to share information and agree on effective strategies to blunt the unprecedented wave of hate aimed at Jews; and

That the Senate urge the Government of Canada to direct the Special Envoy on Preserving Holocaust Remembrance and Combatting Antisemitism to convene a second national summit to combat antisemitism.

Everyone reading this is urged to share the communique and support the call for a second national summit. Write your MP.


Watch Irwin Cotler former Special Envoy on Holocaust Remembrance and Combating Antisemitism, in CBC interview: Iran is a 7 fold threat

Iran is a 'sevenfold threat' to Israel and the world, former Canadian justice minister says:


DEI Ideology, Not Facts Based

Read discussion on the Free Press with Bari Weiss, between two academics, Christopher F. Rufo and Yascha Mounk. Agreeing that DEI has captured education at all levels, as well as other institutions and corporations in America, the topic was,the right way to fight illiberalism.” CAEF agrees this “capture” has also occurred in Canada and must be confronted, reversed, and then open thought and expression can return to our liberal, free society. DEI carries within it, racist and antisemitic notions, makes false assumptions about how things happen that creates differences among people and works of an ahistorical understanding of just about everything, but particularly about income disparities. DEI attempts to explain everything based on racial differences and racist ideas. It must be challenged.

New Jewish Group Combating Antisemitism in Public Education

Jefa Logo

The recently incorporated non profit, Jewish Educators and Families Association of Canada was formed,To empower and unite Jewish teachers, educators, students and their parents by building a collaborative community dedicated to advocacy, combatting antisemitism, advancing safe schools, and fostering a deep connection with Israel, the ancestral homeland of the Jewish people, while supporting our members to make impactful contributions in their schools and communities.”

If you’re concerned about antisemitism in the public education system, looking for resources to address it, want to be engaged in activities to combat it, willing to speak at School Board meetings or writing letters to boards, and government, join JEFA.


Release of New Book, Hate Speech and Academic Freedom

In a webinar on April 17th, Dr. Cary Nelson previewed his latest publication, published by Academic Studies Press with support from ISGAP.

The promotional blurb states: “Completed shortly before Hamas carried out its barbaric October massacre, Hate Speech and Academic Freedom takes up issues that have consequently gained new urgency in the academy worldwide. It is the first book to ask what impact antisemitism has had on the fundamental principles the academy relies on for its identity—academic freedom, free speech rights, standards for hiring or firing faculty members and administrators, and the ethics of academic conduct and debate. Antisemitic hatred is spreading at a fever pitch. What steps can counter it? What damage to students is done when departments embrace anti-Zionism? Should faculty members face consequences for promoting antisemitism on social media? Should universities make a new push to adopt the IHRA Definition of Antisemitism?”

Hate Speech and Academic Freedom by Cary Nelson

Recommended Reading

In the Free Press, Matti Friedman, analyses the real war facing Israel as Iran finally steps out from behind its terror proxies. Friedman describes the support that anti-Israel antagonists get from Western media and academia.

Dogan Akman, contributes his analysis of the War on Truth that is being experienced globally with specific reference to Canada.

Noting the lies and omissions, the denials and duplicity in academia, political community and through all forms of media, began immediately post October 7th. Akman provides this Canadian example:

“A perfect illustration of the war on the truth by Canadians is the recent opinion piece by Lloyd Axworthy and Allan Rock- two former senior Liberal Cabinet Ministers, no less, who wrote,  "Canada can help establish an international protective force in Gaza" published in the Globe and Mail of April 4th. It is an opinion piece premised on no less than five attacks on the truth, directly or by implication, against Israel..”

Read about latest vandalism at a Toronto synagogue, by National Post staff,  April 20, 2024, suggesting normalized antisemitism.

David Crary writing for CityNews notes that this Passover is not a celebration of freedom for every Jew as over 130 remain hostages in Gaza.

Read Brian Lilley in Toronto Sun on Peel District School Board and proposed Nabka Day.

Read Jonathan Rothman in CJN on proposed Nakba Remembrance Day which is opposed by the Minister of Education and the Jewish community.

Read the featured article by Carson Jerema, National Post Managing Editor, on Iran’s attack on Israel.

Ontario Minister of Education has echoed the voices of many parents and educators, urging PDSB to reconsider its decision to include Nakba Day in its list of significant days.

The History of the Land

Palestine Flag roots -1964 C.E. Israel Flag roots - 1450 B.C.E.

Advocacy and Action

CAEF letter to the Peel District School Board Trustees objecting to the Nakba Day on their Days of  Significance Calendar.

CAEF Letter to Pride Toronto objecting to their press release attacking Israel and ignoring Hamas.


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