On April 7, 2004 – in the Montreal Gazette, L Ian Macdonald wrote of the firebombing at the United Talmud Torah school in Montreal:
Part of what he first wrote:
“In the new wave of anti-Semitism sweeping Europe and North America, it is intellectually acceptable to blame local Jewish communities for the reprisals of the Israeli government against the Palestinian suicide bombings. It’s the classical symptom of anti-Semitism—Jews as scapegoats”.
Then immediately following he wrote:
“Of course, Jews and their institutions are visible. They can be blamed, or bombed, for the hard line of the Sharon government, the illegal Israeli settlements, occupation of the West Bank and the xenophobic building of a wall around Israel. The fact is many Canadian Jews, and many Israelis, strongly disagree with Ariel Sharon’s line, and would welcome his forced resignation on impending corruption charges”.
By way of what he wrote in the preceding paragraph, L Ian Macdonald adds to the anti-Semitic flames that are simmering a hair’s breadth just below the surface.
MCDONALD STATES AS FACT: that the Israeli Settlements are illegal, while the United Nations has not yet defined territorial boundaries between Israel and what might eventually become Palestine.
Under UN-speak; much of the territorial boundaries are defined as disputed. But somehow L Ian knows better.
Although there are some settlements that are clearly illegal, even by Ariel Sharon’s admission, they are being dismantled. But one of the settlements that is not considered illegal or disputed by Israel is a modern community attached to Jerusalem, about the size of Dollard Des Ormeaux.
This “settlement” which the Palestinians and Arabs (I guess Macdonald included) want removed is part of Jerusalem, which has been Israel’s eternal city for more than 3,000 years. Biblical history and archeological fact are more than sufficient proof for this claim of legitimacy.
Nonetheless, in an expression of generosity, Barak offered to replace this pittance of land with non disputed Israeli land as a fair exchange at the last Camp David summit which Arafat walked away from.
Macdonald speaks of the “occupation” of the West Bank as if it is fact. But did he ever consider the reverse, that the Arabs and others have been occupying Israel for the last 2000 years?
And since there is not, was not, and never has been a country called Palestine, nor was there ever a Palestinian people, how can Israel be occupying a place with no national history or historical boundaries?
Macdonald calls the Israeli Security Barrier a xenophobic a wall.
Ain’t that nice of him?
Does he call Canada’s “secure” borders xenophobic? Or, what about the US border that protects the USA from all non Americans – Canadians included?
Are the Americans and Canadians xenophobic because they protect their borders with armed troops (Americans), and both countries employ high-tech surveillance systems?
Isn’t this just like Israel; except no one’s trying to sneak into North America every day to murder Americans and Canadians wherever they congregate?
I have yet to have heard news of any suicide bombers blowing up innocent and defenceless men, women and children on North American city busses.
L Ian also makes a point by stating: “The fact is many Canadian Jews, and many Israelis, strongly disagree with Ariel Sharon’s line, and would welcome his forced resignation on impending corruption charges”.
That might be true. But so what? Most Canadians can’t stand the governments we have either. And talk about corruption. Where’s Macdonald been during the sponsorship scandal?
As a matter of fact, Israel’s democracy is comprised of proportional representation, which makes it and its elected leaders far more accountable to its populace than Canada’s system, where the Prime Minister in a majority government is virtually king.
Macdonald’s article was unfair, inaccurate, biassed and a perfect example of the type of reporting that incites anti-Semitism. It is akin to the old: “Some of my best friends are Jews”.
I do not suspect – nor do I accuse L Ian Macdonald of being an anti-Semite or a hate monger. But what he wrote is hurtful, disingenuous and dead wrong.