Recent weeks have seen indications that opponents of Israel’s apartheid policies are meeting a harsh backlash, as pro-Zionist forces in Canada seek to marginalize and even criminalize their critics. In this situation, it is crucial to raise our voices in solidarity with the people of Palestine.
Here are a few examples. During the World Social Forum held in August, some MPs, the mayor of Montreal, the right-populist CAQ party, the National Post and others accused WSF organizers and participants of being anti-Jewish, simply because the campaign for Boycott, Disinvestment and Sanctions (BDS) against Israeli apartheid was among the topics being discussed. In one incident, a gang of violent thugs tried to break up a BDS forum. Also last month, the majority of delegates to the Green Party of Canada’s annual convention adopted a pro-BDS resolution, a democratic decision which provoked the fury of politicians, the corporate media and Zionist groups. Green Party leader Elizabeth May threatened to resign, until the party’s executive agreed to “revisit” the vote. In Vancouver, the Facebook page of a local Boycott Israeli Wines campaign is under siege from hundreds of Zionists posting profane and threatening comments.
Such tactics aim to intimidate people from expressing any form of solidarity or even sympathy with the struggle of the Palestinian people. But despite this bullying, growing numbers of Canadians recognize that Israel’s illegal occupation of Palestinian lands, its “separation wall” in the West Bank, the imprisonment of Gaza, etc., constitute a very real form of racist apartheid. The BDS campaign would end quickly,
if Israel reversed these inhuman policies and carried out the resolutions of the United Nations on the rights of the Palestinian people. Failing that, we and others will continue to advocate support for the BDS movement. We refuse to be silent in the face of threats!