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The Ontario government recently approved a motion that the term "Israeli Apartheid" should not be used.
The motion passed with unanimous support from the Ontario Tory's, Liberals and NDP.
Speaking to the Toronto Sun Conservative MPP Peter Shurman stated that "I want to be clear about what it is I’m trying to do. I want the name changed. It’s that simple. It’s just wrong."
And why is it wrong for Shurman? What stunning and well thought out rational did Shurman use to back up his condemnation of the words "Israeli Apartheid"?
Does he dispute that there are similarities between the Bantustan system in South Africa and the territory allotments to Palestinians? Did he challenge the claim that there are two different laws that exist in Israel, one for Israelis and another for Palestinians? Why did he and the entire Legislature choose to target the the term "Israeli Apartheid"?
“My problem is the name,” he said. “Israeli Apartheid Week is not dialogue, it’s a monologue. The name is hateful, it is odious and that’s not how things should be in my Ontario. It’s a term that frankly I’m sick of hearing. Get rid of this word apartheid.”
One, Shurman never said that the term was not accurate in describing the system. Which makes sense given many South Africans and Israelis themselves use this terms to describe the treatment of Palestinians.
Two, replace the word "Israeli" with "South African" in Shurman's quote and it makes about as much sense as it would have in the 1980's.
Dear Jack Layton,
I would like to commend you on your decision to participate in the Durban Review Conference in April 2009. Canada's boycott of this Geneva conference goes to demonstrate the government's recent change in foreign relations to Israel. It goes hand in hand with the recently signed Canada-Israel Free Trade agreement, and the Security Agreement between our two countries.
I am a Canadian Israeli and have previously lived in the West Bank in an illegal settlement (on Palestinian land). In spite of the fact that the entire world has again and again agreed the occupation of the West Bank, the building of Settlements, and the construction of the Wall are contradictory to international law, Israel has proceeded to ignore them. In spite of the International Court of Justice decision, and the annual voting by the United Nations on the Palestinian Refugee's right of return, Israel has been implementing racist, apartheid laws and enforcing them year after year.
As a former refugee from the Soviet Union, I remember not belonging anywhere, I remember the complete dire poverty, and the deafening fear of persecution. We have been faced with centuries of anti-Semitism in the former USSR and have lived through immense discriminatory violence within our lifetimes. That is why when we escaped to Israel we were at first blind to the political significance of our presence there and what our new nation was doing to its indigenous population. It took living in the West Bank as economic settlers to see the system of apartheid for what it really is.
Last week, the Canadian Union of Postal Workers became the first national north american labour organization to join the international boycott, divestment, sanctions campaign against the state of Israel. Strangely, this has yet to hit the media in Canada, even though the resolution in support of the campaign was passed democratically at the CUPW convention more than two weeks ago. The 54,000 member union joins such prominent labour organizations as the 770,000 member Irish Congress of Trade Unions, the 1.5 million-member Congress of South African Trade Unions, the 800,000 strong UK Transport and General Workers Union, and a growing list of others including CUPE Ontario. Nevertheless, expect editorial tireless screeds within Canadian newspapers against CUPW's membership in the weeks ahead.
Also of interest: Tadamon! statement of congratulations to CUPW.
An excellent article from THIS magazine concerning the growing national campaign to boycott Chapters/Indigo bookstore due to the support for the Israeli military from the company majority shareholders Heather Reisman & Gerry Schwartz...
Full Article at: This Magazine.
Imagination. Creativity. Inspiration. Three words to stir the soul crown the towering windows of Toronto’s flagship Indigo bookstore. At ground level, shoppers pass in and out of wood-framed glass doors, navigating planters and benches intended to create a friendly, front-porch sort of welcome. They take little notice as, on the sidewalk beyond, two women unfurl an off-white canvas banner. Printed on one side are another three words, less poetic perhaps than the store’s motto, but the intended effect is just as moving: Boycott Chapters/ Indigo.
No, the protest is not a last-ditch attempt by independent booksellers to draw the literate back into their fold. Rather, the activists—11 have turned up on this Friday in April, the first truly warm day of spring—are taking a page from a much larger book. They are members of the Coalition Against Israeli Apartheid (CAIA), a network of Palestinian rights, Jewish peace and socialist groups doing their part to promote an international boycott campaign against Israel. They compare themselves to the early voices against South African apartheid, and history, they believe, can repeat itself: If international pressure could help rescue South Africa from apartheid, the same can be true for Israel.
Montreal, September 18th 2007: The Montreal network of the Coalition against Israeli Apartheid welcomed former Prime Minister Brian Mulroney during a launch of his autobiography at Indigo bookstore by unfurling a banner denouncing the apartheid situation under which Palestinians are living...
Full release from Tadamon! Montreal.
Listen / Download HERE.
This edition of Radio Tadamon! brings you to the streets, from the ongoing demonstrations throughout Canada calling for a boycott of Indigo/Chapters bookstores due to their support for Israel, to the major demonstrations in Montabello, Quebec surrounding the North American trilateral summit in August 2007.
The Dominion is a monthly paper published by an incipient network of independent journalists in Canada. It aims to provide accurate, critical coverage that is accountable to its readers and the subjects it tackles. Taking its name from Canada's official status as both a colony and a colonial force, the Dominion examines politics, culture and daily life with a view to understanding the exercise of power.