Chanukah celebrates the miracle of the Maccabees defeating the Seleucids, Hellenistic Greeks, and as Zionists let us also celebrate our modern miracle - the establishment of the State of Israel. Let us continue the tradition—take action, stand up against our enemies
CAEF supports this protest initiated by Rabbi Corey Margolese.
We remind everyone that our grassroots movement End Jew Hatred Canada sent a mezuzah case and message to every MP and Senator asking them to stand up for the Jewish community, stand against Jew hatred, take a selfie and commit to action. We are tired of words alone. CAEF demands the federal government demonstrate its implementation of the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance definition of antisemitism.
Watch CAEF Webinar with Dr. Oren Osterer presenting 1948. The Exhibition, with all exhibition images. Share this to educate about truth and eradicate lies about Modern Israel.
Toronto District School Board Fails on “Palestine” Controversy by Michael Teper
TDSB Director Colleen Russell-Rawlins' letter responding to the demonstration at Marc Garneau Collegiate Institute last Friday sorely misses the mark.
The slogan written on a sign used at the demonstration was "From the River to the Sea, Palestine will be free". That is much different than a mere expression of Palestinians' "human and land rights as people" she described in her letter. If that were the intent of the slogan, it would read "From the River to the Sea, Palestinians will be free". This is not nitpicking - words and their meanings do matter.
Instead, that slogan is a call for the elimination of the State of Israel. If there is to be a sovereign state of Palestine whose territory is to extend from the Jordan River to the Mediterranean Sea, then the State of Israel would necessarily have to disappear. In other words, the necessary implication of this slogan is that there is something fundamentally immoral about the very existence of a State of Israel, and that Israeli Jews are alien intruders in a country that doesn't properly belong to them. (Incidentally, this is a recurring theme in the emails that TDSB employee Javier Davila sent around last May. These materials repeatedly refer to "illegal Jewish settlers" and Israeli Jews as "settler colonialist.") This slogan therefore reflects the antisemitic trope that Jews have no indigenous homeland, and are at root foreigners and interlopers everywhere they go. So this slogan doesn't just "mean different things to different people" as described by the TDSB Director; it has a clear antisemitic foundation and is no less odious than the notorious "14 words" used by white supremacists: "We must secure the existence of our people and a future for white children".
Beyond the TDSB's tolerance for this slogan, the TDSB has a really hard time summoning up the courage to deal seriously with anti-Israel bigotry.
By now it's well known to everyone at the TDSB executive team that Javier Davila's emails from May 16, 2021 and May 19, 2021 contained no fewer than four links to pro-terrorist websites, including to a pamphlet which characterizes suicide bombings against Israelis as "legitimate ... martyrdom operations", the autobiography of serial airplane hijacker Leila Khaled, to the archived propaganda of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (designated as a terrorist entity by Public Safety Canada) and to an interview with PFLP leader Ghassan Kanafani. There's a real problem with the message the TDSB is sending through differential consequences administered to TDSB staff who commit acts of anti-Black racism (justifiably dismissed from employment within three weeks of the incident) and TDSB staff who create a poisoned working and learning environment by circulating 'educational resources' that link to pro-terrorist websites (apparently nothing).
By not coming clean on why there were no consequences to Javier Davila, and not coming clean about the TDSB's investigation process, the TDSB is failing in its duties of transparency and accountability as a public institution.
What's particularly troubling is that a former Ministry of Education officer named Debbie Kasman has bragged on her website that a letter she sent to each TDSB trustee, in which she accused former TDSB Director Karen Falconer of being potentially biased against Palestinians because she is Jewish, may have had an effect on Mr. Davila's reinstatement. There is something very mysterious and rotten about the way this investigation was handled, and the TDSB owes an honest and complete explanation to the community.
A new Working Group to End Jew Hatred, chaired by Gila Martow, MPP issued a statement, week of November 21st.
A protest was held at the Toronto District School Board headquarters, November 21st, organized by Rabbi Corey Margolese to draw attention to the unresolved, unaddressed, uncondemned antisemitism expressed by students and teachers within the TDSB, especially at a student street event at Marc Garneau Collegiate on November 19th.
Antisemitism Continues at the University of Toronto
For the uninitiated, The University of Toronto, Canada’s premier academic institution, has a lengthy history of antisemitic incidents, as well as faculty and student bodies that express horrific anti-Israel sentiments and defame, demonize and denigrate Israel and Israelis. The global Anti-Israel Apartheid Week program has given the university the dubious honourof being the birthplace of thisantisemitic event which has continued annually for over 15 years. On Wednesday November 24th, the Scarborough Campus Student Union brought bigotry against Jews to the fore once again.
After years of such antics as hosting Jew haters and bigots, isolating Jews with campaigns to disallow kosher food, BDS committee activity at the Graduate Student Union and more, the Student Union at the Scarborough Campus passed truly vile resolutions at its recent AGM.
Hasbara Fellowships quickly addressed the issue and published a full account of the Student Union resolutions. Steven Werner, a supporter of CAEF, shared a detailed analysis of the situation in a letter to the President of U of T, Dr. Meric Gertler and Minister of Colleges and Universities, Jill Dunlop. See below.
Below Werner’s letter is the response issued November 26 by President Gertleraddressing the Scarborough Campus Student Union’s (SCSU) resolutions,pointing out the inappropriateness of these resolutions as they are contrary to university policies on freedom of speech and inclusion. This is an important first step for the university and one welcomed by many Jewish organizations, but it is not enough!
CAEF expects the university to actively condemn the antisemitism on display at the SCSU, which is not even mentioned in President Gertler’s statement. What is the university afraid of, having established a Working Group on Antisemitism it cannot deny this evil exists on campus? So why hesitate to use the word now?
Action to educate and eradicate Jew hatred begins with naming it. Demanding it end, requires action and consequences. This is not about freedom of speech, but about bold faced lies, denigration of a people, demonizing a country, trying to separate a people from its homeland and Jews from Zionism, an absurd step.
There was a magnificent response from the Jewish Student Life (JSL) group at UTSC, suggesting more than words must follow. A human rights complaint is being considered by the students. Action is called for Now.
Read the various statements in sequence to fully understand the situation and lend your support to JSL, by contacting Yardena Rosenblum, President of JSL at UTSC. email@example.com
Open letter from Steven Werner, November 26, 2021
Dear President Gertler, and Minister Dunlop,
Racist discrimination is currently on open display at the University of Toronto. I am specifically referring to the campaigns targeting Israel and anyone who supports or may be neutral towards Israel.
From the recent Hasbara Fellowships Canada statement:
"At its Annual General Meeting (AGM) on Wednesday, Nov. 24, the SCSU passed its second motion in support of the boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) movement. A subsection of the original motion passed in 2013 now requires that any kosher food brought to campus must come from an organization that does not support “Israeli apartheid.”
President Gertler, allowing such bigotry is an insult to every decent and fair-minded member of your university and a moral stain on its character. Furthermore, given that such anti-"Israel" / antisemitic campaigns are promulgated via malicious disinformation reminiscent of cold-war style Soviet and Nazi propaganda, these now normative anti-Jewish events can only harm a university's reputation. More importantly of course are the very real, harmful effects these have on students, faculty and the broader community. I am sure that these detrimental effects are clear and self-evident to you as well.
One's freedom of expression must never fall victim to repression by another, especially when the opposing narrative is fueled by distortion and guided by hate. Decency demands immediate action against the above-mentioned antisemitic motion and the people that promote it. Hate left uncheck grows, and anti-Jewish hate has grown within the U of T for years. Your university, while sadly not unique in the city or even the province when it comes to dealing with Jew-hatred within its community, has in the past hosted openly racist speakers and tolerates supporters of terrorists.
Furthermore, U of T will forever hold the dubious distinction of being the birthplace of the hate-fest known as "Israel Apartheid Week", a university sanctioned opportunity for hateful lies to be disseminated by opportunists with the specific intent of demonizing a liberal, western democracy that in reality is an example of coexistence. Belief systems of many and various persuasions coexist within Israeli schools, businesses, hospitals, governmental institutions and the military. To claim Israel is an Apartheid state flies in the face of all evidence to the contrary yet that is the narrative being employed to slander and marginalize Israel and any supporter of her. It appears that no one questions why Jews cannot be found working alongside their Arab neighbours within the territories governed by the Palestinian Authority or Hamas. In fact, Jew-hatred is openly promoted within the Arab political and religious institutions under their supervision and direction. Conversely, Israeli laws guarantee equal protection for all its citizens regardless of faith, ethnicity, colour or sexual orientation. Facts be damned in the current campus environs, where the normalization of Inversion Politics means the replacement of evidence with unsubstantiated narratives driven by malice.
Anti-Jewish propagandists use volume and perverted buzz-words like "ethnic cleansing" and "genocide" to bully others into submitting to their agenda. Currently, campuses are eerily reminiscent of the early 20th century where it was commonplace for Jews to face discrimination. I am not asking nor expect special treatment for Jews or supporters of Israel, I am simply asking that fairness and equality finally and immediately be afforded to them.
On November 26th 2021, the President issued a statement which follows.
Statement from Meric Gertler, President University of Toronto on the Recent SCSU (Scarborough Campus Students’ Union) Motions made at their at their AGM onNovember24th.
November 26, 2021
The University of Toronto is opposed to all forms of discrimination, and committed to the protection of freedom of speech and academic freedom. The University was alarmed to learn about two motions passed at the Scarborough Campus Students’ Union (SCSU) Annual General Meeting on November 24. Both motions are inconsistent with the University of Toronto’s core values of freedom of speech and inclusion.
Jewish Student Life, Scarborough Campus Response
We, as Jewish students, thank President Meric Gertler for the University administration’s condemnation of the reprehensible, bigoted actions taken by the Scarborough Campus Students Union (SCSU). President Gertler states “Student societies for which the University collects mandatory fees based on registration must abide by our Policy on Open, Accessible and Democratic Autonomous Student Societies.”
The JSL wholeheartedly agrees that the motions passed by the SCSU at the November 24 Annual General Meeting patently violate this policy. We concur that this is a double standard that would never be applied to any other minority group and that these motions clearly violate our rights as students of the University of Toronto.
We also thank Vice President Kelly Hannah-Moffat and Vice President and UTSC Principal Wisdom Tettey for their acknowledgement of the injustices committed at the November 24th Annual General Meeting. We hope to continue to collaborate with U of T Scarborough’s Office of Student Experience and Wellbeing (OSEW) and the Equity, Diversity & Inclusion Office (EDIO) as we make campus a positive environment for all students.
Although there were many strong comments made by the University in our support, there is a need to call out bigotry by name when it is so clearly manifested. The actions of the SCSU were not simply political disagreement. The passing of these motions is an act of blatant antisemitism and must be addressed as such.
Confronting Anti-Israel Academics with Facts
A newish organization, the Association for the Study of the Middle East and Africa (ASMEA), was formed to counter the left wing ideology of the Middle East Studies Association which has been usurped by elites who don’t consider divergent views, and have dominated the professional scene for some years. This is perhaps a turning of the tide, though abandoning the existing organizations, be if associations, faculties or universities as is being done by Bari Weiss and friends in the US who are not creating a new University of Austin, is extreme. Would that all efforts could turn around the ideologues who persist in undermining academia, adopting critical race theory/identity politics/progressivism/cancel culture/wokeism/inversion of science for the correct “opinion” and battering history and objective truth to death. In the face of the collectivity that is running rampant on campuses, maybe starting something new is the answer. Comments would be welcome.
Changing Course, Taking a New Initiative to Counter Academic Bias
An inspiring group of journalists, academics, activists, innovators have come together to create the new University of Austin. Pano Kanelos, the new President, left a career position to help inaugurate this university which will welcome, not exclude conservative voices. Does this solution also describe a problem at Canadian universities?
“Nearly a quarter of American academics in the social sciences or humanities endorse ousting a colleague for having a wrong opinion about hot-button issues such as immigration or gender differences. Over a third of conservative academics and PhD students say they had been threatened with disciplinary action for their views. Four out of five American PhD students are willing to discriminate against right-leaning scholars, according to a report by the Center for the Study of Partisanship and Ideology.”
This vision of a university is very compelling: “Our rigorous curriculum will be the first designed in partnership not only with great teachers but also society’s greatdoers—founders of daring ventures, dissidents who have stood up to authoritarianism, pioneers in tech, and the leading lights in engineering and the natural sciences. Our students will be exposed to the deepest wisdom of civilization and learn to encounter works not as dead traditions but as fierce contests of timeless significance that help human beings distinguish between what is true and false, good and bad, beautiful and ugly."