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wRanter.com: A national icon takes his leave

One of the questions I posed in this space a few weeks ago was: who will be the next big-name Jewish MP? With apologies to Joe Oliver, Canada’s first Jewish federal finance minister, what I may subconsciously have been asking is who will be the next Irwin Cotler, now that the 75-year-old Mount Royal Liberal . . . → Read More: wRanter.com: A national icon takes his leave

wRanter.com: Church settlement boycott becomes interfaith train wreck

Share this: This past August, the General Council of the United Church of Canada, the country’s largest Protestant denomination, adopted a motion urging its members to boycott goods produced in West Bank settlements. The proposal was part of a larger, rather one-sided report prepared by the church’s Working Group on Israel/Palestine Policy. It aimed to . . . → Read More: wRanter.com: Church settlement boycott becomes interfaith train wreck

Andy Lehrer: At long last, Farber forced to denounce JDL

After years of treating the Jewish Defence League as if they were a rogueish but loveable younger brother, Canadian Jewish Congress supremo Bernie Farber has finally said something about the JDL that’s stronger than “they’re not my cup of tea” or that he’s “disappointed” by them.

A shame he and other self-appointed leaders of the Canadian Jewish community have looked the other way or been quietly encouraging of them over the past few years as the JDL has organized and grown and been busy on campuses and even high schools recruiting youth.

The JDL is and always has been a hate group and a violent one at that and Farber et al’s insistence that the Canadian JDL is somehow different than its US counterpart has only given them cover and allowed them to work unopposed within the Jewish community. Had any other group said about Jews what the JDL has long said about Muslims the CJC would have been rightly outraged and insisted that the group in question be ostracised.

Instead, Farber has always quietly defended the JDL or, at worst, issued the mildest of rebuke. This is perhaps his greatest failure as a “liberal” who has been too opportunistic and too wary of being outflanked on the right to say anything. Indeed, he has been so reticent to be critical that JDL head Meir Weinstein actually thinks of Farber as a friend and speaks glowingly of him to others.

Now that the JDL’s extremism is undeniable will Farber finally do what he should have done years ago and work to ostracise the JDL within the Jewish community and try to deny them the space to organize? Somehow, I doubt it. There would be a political price to pay and Farber lacks the integrity needed to expend the political capital needed to root out the JDL. He’d much rather ostracise and marginalize Independent Jewish Voices for the crime of criticising Israel than to consistently oppose the JDL, an organization rooted in a variety of ultra-nationalism that can only be called fascism.

Still, good that he had this printed in the Toronto Sun, it’s a modest step. Let’s see if he issues a similar, or hopefully stronger, missive in the Canadian Jewish News. Will he actually meet with the principals of Jewish Day Schools and urge them to ban the JDL from their schools? Will he ask Jewish campus groups to refuse to work with the JDL? Will he ask the UJA to freeze them out? Or can we expect this summer, yet again, the sight of Meir Weinstein walking down the route of the annual Walk With Israel like a conquring hero or some fascist version of the King of Kensington kibbitzing and patting the back of every “community leader” he encounters, including Farber, as if Weinstein is a somebody, a Big Man on the Jewish Campus? Independent Jewish Voices and its predecessor, the Alliance of Concerned Jewish Canadians, have warned about the JDL and urged Farber and others to denounce them. While I’m sure we’re gratified that, however late in the day, Farber has finally seen the light let’s see if this epiphany will last. Farber’s started talking the talk. Will he and the “leadership” of the Jewish community now walk the walk?

Troubling marriage for T.O.’s Jews

The EDL is well-known throughout Europe for its anti-Muslim street protests

By Bernie Farber and Benjamin Shinewald, Guest Columnists . . . → Read More: Andy Lehrer: At long last, Farber forced to denounce JDL

Andy Lehrer's Firebrand blog: At long last, Farber forced to denounce JDL

After years of treating the Jewish Defence League as if they were a rogueish but loveable younger brother, Canadian Jewish Congress supremo Bernie Farber has finally said something about the JDL that’s stronger than “they’re not my cup of tea” or that he’s “disappointed” by them.

A shame he and other self-appointed leaders . . . → Read More: Andy Lehrer’s Firebrand blog: At long last, Farber forced to denounce JDL

Canadian Firebrand: At long last, Farber forced to denounce JDL

After years of treating the Jewish Defence League as if they were a rogueish but loveable younger brother, Canadian Jewish Congress supremo Bernie Farber has finally said something about the JDL that’s stronger than “they’re not my cup of tea” or that he’s “disappointed” by them.

A shame he and other self-appointed leaders . . . → Read More: Canadian Firebrand: At long last, Farber forced to denounce JDL

Andy Lehrer's Firebrand blog: Hypocrisy from the Canadian Jewish Congress’ Marilyn Shapiro

The letters page of today’s National Post includes a submission by one Marilyn Shapiro of Thornhill. She responds to a previous letter by Professor Yakov Rabkin which defends Independent Jewish Voices against attack by the Canadian Jewish Congress. After falsely describing IJV as made up of “anti-Israel Jews and non-Jews” she goes after Rabkin claiming . . . → Read More: Andy Lehrer’s Firebrand blog: Hypocrisy from the Canadian Jewish Congress’ Marilyn Shapiro

Canadian Firebrand: Hypocrisy from the Canadian Jewish Congress’ Marilyn Shapiro

The letters page of today’s National Post includes a submission by one Marilyn Shapiro of Thornhill. She responds to a previous letter by Professor Yakov Rabkin which defends Independent Jewish Voices against attack by the Canadian Jewish Congress. After falsely describing IJV as made up of “anti-Israel Jews and non-Jews” she goes after Rabkin claiming . . . → Read More: Canadian Firebrand: Hypocrisy from the Canadian Jewish Congress’ Marilyn Shapiro

Andy Lehrer's Firebrand blog: The Canadian Jewish Congress and the National Post’s double standard on Independent Jewish Voices

Last week, the National Post published a screed yet again attacking Independent Jewish Voices and its former chair, Diana Ralph. Several years ago, prior to joining Independent Jewish Voices, Ralph wrote a chapter for a book called Hidden History of 9-11 in which her thesis was that the Bush Administration was using 9-11 as a . . . → Read More: Andy Lehrer’s Firebrand blog: The Canadian Jewish Congress and the National Post’s double standard on Independent Jewish Voices