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A new authoritarian axis demands an international progressive front
Sep 16, 2018 at 03:24 PM

There is a global struggle taking place of enormous consequence. Nothing less than the future of the planet - economically, socially and environmentally - is at stake.

At a time of massive wealth and income inequality, when the world's top 1% now owns more wealth than the bottom 99%, we are seeing the rise of a new authoritarian axis.

While these regimes may differ in some respects, they share key attributes: hostility toward democratic norms, antagonism toward a free press, intolerance toward ethnic and religious minorities, and a belief that government should benefit their own selfish financial interests. These leaders are also deeply connected to a network of multi-billionaire oligarchs who see the world as their economic plaything.

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Dimitri Lascaris is not an Antisemite
Sep 14, 2018 at 12:00 AM

Pro-Israel lobby groups B’nai Brith Canada and the Centre for Israel and Jewish Affairs (CIJA) have once again levied the charge of antisemitism at a Palestinian rights activist in what appears to be an attempt to tarnish his reputation. Their latest target is lawyer and former Green Party Justice Critic Dimitri Lascaris.

Members of Independent Jewish Voices Canada (IJV) and other Jewish social justice activists have worked with Mr. Lascaris for years. We state categorically that the accusation of antisemitism against him is false and irresponsible.

Mr. Lascaris has issued his own response to these charges. We appreciate the clarifications and applaud his rejoinder.

The modus operandi of these groups is to seize upon a word or a phrase by an individual, label it a manifestation of Jew-hatred, demand that people and organizations dissociate from the accused, and then repeat the allegations in the hope that the accusations, and not the facts, prevail. 

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Sir, I Will Not Be Deterred From Defending Human Rights
Sep 11, 2018 at 12:00 AM

I am a proud anti-racist and advocate for human rights, yet I now find myself in a situation familiar to so many defenders of the human rights of Palestinians: I am being defamed as an anti-Semite by pro-Israel organizations and pro-Israel politicians, including Canada's own Prime Minister.

Let me state unequivocally that I oppose and condemn antisemitism. Indeed, I oppose and condemn all forms of racism. I am humbled to belong to a principled global solidarity movement against the occupation of Palestine. That wonderful and growing movement includes many brothers and sisters from the Jewish community. We are resolute that fighting all racism is necessary to realize any hope for a just peace in Israel and Palestine.

I have visited and reported on Israel and occupied Palestine. I have born witness to Palestinian suffering. This has moved me to seek an end to the oppression of Palestinians, which the Canadian government tries to sweep under the carpet.

Over the last decade, pro-Israel organizations in Western nations have attempted methodically to expand the definition of antisemitism to include criticism of Israel and of its advocates. Previously, antisemitism was understood as prejudice and hatred of Jews, their religion, their culture and their religious institutions. The nation-state of Israel was not part of the equation.

Canada just signed on to the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA) definition of antisemitism. In 2016, the Western-dominated IHRA adopted a 'working definition' of antisemitism that is 'non-legally binding'. That definition includes vague language that 'manifestations [of antisemitism] might include the targeting of the state of Israel, conceived as a Jewish collectivity.' The IHRA definition also states that 'contemporary examples of antisemitism. . . could, taking into account the overall context, include . . . accusing Jewish citizens of being more loyal to Israel, or to the alleged priorities of Jews worldwide, than to the interests of their own nations.' [My emphasis.]

This sweeping language has become a weapon in the hands of pro-Israel groups and individuals: deploying it enables them to denounce any critic of Israel as anti-Semitic in order to disrupt, deter, marginalize and even criminalize Palestinian rights activism.

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Protesters tell Deltaport to “free Palestine” and block the boat

They say the boat has links to Israeli war crimes

http://www.news1130.com/2014/09/06/protesters-tell-deltaport-to-free-palestine-and-block-the-boat/

DELTA (NEWS1130) Sept. 6 2014 – A group of activists are protesting the expected arrival of an Israeli ship at Deltaport.

The group is promoting the message of “Let Gaza Live and free Palestine.”

The boat is operated by ZIM, which protesters say is connected with the plight of people in Palestine and they think it’s wrong that a company involved in the warfare should profit by using local ports.

John Turnbull is one of the demonstrators and is hopeful the message will be effective. “As worker said, ‘this should be done all around the world.’ Workers at Delta are just as aware of the news as the rest of us are and are just as concerned about it.”

Similar demonstrations have been successful in Oakland, California.

The boat is due to arrive at 11 a.m. tomorrow.