What are mainstream Jewish organizations in Canada doing about Charlottesville? Are they uniting with other targeted groups to lend support? Nothing.
Are they standing up for their human rights – and trying to be good allies?
In a word: No. Photo by Simon de Vet
It’s been four days since the events in Charlottesville, and not one Jewish Canadian mainstream site outlet has published a word. The absence of anything about Charlottesville, racism, and white supremacy tells us a lot. If there is nothing about these events on their sites, what is the latest news on their sites?
- CIJA, the Centre for Israel and Jewish Affairs, which has taken over the Canadian Jewish Congress as the main spokesmen for mainstream Canadian Jews, posts this as its main news story online: “Palestinian Leader Sends Greetings to North Korea.” The date of this latest story on their website is Aug. 15. There is nothing on the site about Charlottesville, or about Canadians protesting against the neo-Nazis, KKKers or alt-right which threatens all minorities. UPDATE: CIJA has finally printed something — yesterday. CIJA says Jews have a lot of allies who will help us in the fight against anti-semitism: But the question is– are Canadian Jewish leaders committed will to help fight for blacks and muslims in the wake of Charlottesville?
- CIJA-Quebec’s major news release on Aug. 9 (latest entry online), credits itself with the city of Montreal agreeing to change the name of a street that had been named for a French pro-Nazi sympathizer during World War II.
- B’nai Brith Canada is an organization that has “advocated for Canadian Jewry and championed the cause of human rights since 1875” according its website. Their latest news release (Aug. 11) is that the international Jewish fraternity, Alpha Epsilon Pi (AEPi), has chosen B’nai Brith as its Canadian charity. The US-based B’nai Brith International issued a statement that condemned white supremacist violence in Charlottesville which makes the failure of B’nai Brith Canada all the more striking. B’nai Brith Canada didn’t even provide a link to the US story.
- In its most recent post, B’nai Brith Canada’s Aug. 14 news release honours the memory of a man who started a Montreal Memories site.
- Friends of Simon Wiesenthal Centre is another organization which often speaks on behalf of many in the Canadian Jewish community. Its website says that the FSWC “carries out the work of the Wiesenthal Center in Canada by bringing anti-semitism, bigotry, racial hatred, and ethnic intolerance to the attention of the Canadian government, the public and the media.” That said, the Simon Wiesenthal Centre’s latest posting is a reprinted an article from the Toronto Star (Aug. 11) which raised concerns about Nazi memorabilia sold at a local antiques market.
photo by Simon de Vet Anti-fascist demonstration in Halifax, 15 Aug.
With nothing in the mainstream Canadian Jewish community which denounces or pays any attention to the events at Charlottesville, and its effects on Canadians, I decided to look at AIPAC’s extensive website. AIPAC is the American Israel Public Affairs Committee which calls itself “America’s Pro-Israel Lobby.” Today’s press release (Aug. 16) is “Timeline of Iran’s Malign Behavior” and also today was posted Ambassador Haley: Iran Cannot “Use the Nuclear Deal to Hold the World Hostage”.
There you have it. Not one Canadian source noted the events that took place, the murder of the young woman, the many injured, and the rise and now (in the mind of the US president Trump) the legitimacy of the neo-nazis, the KKKers and the alt-right.
What should a Canadian Jew do who wants leadership on this very serious issue?