Prime Minister Justin Trudeau
House of Commons
Parliament of Canada
History is repeating itself.
You have dishonourably exploited your apology for Canada’s historical rejection of Jewish refugees during World War II to falsely conflate antisemitism with and callously reject Palestinian Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) efforts to protect the human rights of generations of Palestinian refugees ‘chased out of their homes’ and ‘Persecuted, robbed, jailed and killed because of who they were.’ Furthermore the Jewish state ‘had denied them their citizenship and their fundamental rights.’
“Anti-Semitism is far too present. Jewish students still feel unwelcomed and uncomfortable on some of our colleges and university campuses because of BDS-related intimidation.
And out of our entire community of nations, it is Israel whose right to exist is most widely and wrongly questioned.”
Wrongly questioned??? For the informed and integrity-minded it is ‘impossible to ignore the challenges and injustices still facing’ Palestinian families today under the illegal Israeli occupation of their land.
Your ambassador to the United Nations says,
Since coming to office, Prime Minister Trudeau and the Government of Canada have been clear about the importance of the United Nations and multilateral engagement. Canada recognizes that a collective effort is needed of all Member States and all stakeholders if we are to find solutions to the many challenges before us.”
However your and the Harper governments, unmoved by the plight of these [Palestinian] refugees, and indifferent to their suffering, have turned their backs on multiple UN resolutions condemning the alarming rate of Israel’s apartheid policies, illegal settlement expansion and daily crimes against humanity and war crimes according to the Fourth Geneva Conventions.
Thus, Canada continues to turn its back on these innocent victims of the Jewish state’s brutal regime and by collaborating shares the immoral responsibility to doom Palestinian families to the horrors of the West Bank and Gaza ghettos.
In your apology you make reference to the tragic massacre ‘at the Tree of Life synagogue in Pittsburgh, killing 11 people and wounding six others’. You say, ‘Places of worship are sacred, and they should be sanctuaries for all faith communities.’ Does ‘all’ include the despicable act of the 29 Palestinians ‘murdered in their sanctuary’ of the Ibrahim Mosque plus the 100 injured by Israeli doctor, Baruch Goldstein?
Surely, you would agree that one’s home and nation is also a sanctuary. But there are the massacres perpetrated today by Zionist snipers slaughtering unarmed non-violent refugees, abled and disabled Palestinian children and youth, who daily bravely demand, at the walls and fences of their humanitarian crisis, for their right of return to their homes under international law. Like the Jewish refugees on the MS St Louis, Canada deems the Palestinian refugees, innocent victims of the Zionist regime, unworthy of a home, and undeserving of your help.
As a member state of the UN, under obligation to uphold political and human rights of the people of Palestine, Canada has failed miserably and the bounds of its humanity is morally and gravely limited thanks to your servile prostration to Israel and the USA.
It was unacceptable that Canada turned its back on the Jews of Europe, and it is unacceptable now that Canada is failing to stop the discrimination, hate-motivated crimes, violence and threat of Zionism against the vulnerable Palestinian people.
More than 70 years ago, Canada turned its back on Palestine by voting for the UN Partition Plan for which the UN had no legal mandate to divide up foreign territory. Certainly, ‘time has by no means absolved Canada of its guilt or lessened the weight of its shame.’ In fact, you have augmented both guilt and shame with your indifference, lack of political courage and legitimisation of Zionist atrocities.
It is time that the ongoing dishonourable chapters of Canada’s abusive history of the Palestinian people end and that its lessons are never forgotten by Canada’s ‘children and grandchildren’.
Palestine does not need you to apologise. Rather, Canadians must unwaveringly ‘pledge, now and forever, never again’ to violate the respect for Palestine’s humanity enshrined in the UN Charter and pledge to take part in the ‘social struggles for fairness, justice and human rights,’ ‘for democracy and the rule of law, for equality and liberty’ that is the spirit and agency of BDS.
Nor should the international community pit a Palestinian state against a Jewish state. It is our ‘collective responsibility’ to support a one-nation solution in which Palestinians and Jews live together in equality and peace.
Dr Vacy Vlazna
Justice for Palestine Matters
Sydney, Guringai, Australia
Dr. Vacy Vlazna is Coordinator of Justice for Palestine Matters and editor of a volume of Palestinian poetry, I remember my name. She was Human Rights Advisor to the GAM team in the second round of the Acheh peace talks, Helsinki, February 2005 then withdrew on principle. Vacy was convenor of Australia East Timor Association and coordinator of the East Timor Justice Lobby as well as serving in East Timor with UNAMET and UNTAET from 1999-2001.
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