Canada Joins Campaign to Stifle Criticism of Israel

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A Socialist Project e-bulletin ... No. 1860 ... July 11, 2019

Canada Joins Campaign to Stifle Criticism of Israel

John Clarke

On June 25, Canada’s Minister of Canadian Heritage and Multiculturalism announced that the Trudeau government’s new anti-racism strategy would include the adoption of the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance’s (IHRA) definition of antisemitism. The Co-Chair of the Centre for Israel and Jewish Affairs (CIJA) proudly noted that:

"the IHRA definition also explicitly recognizes that anti-Zionism -- that is the delegitimization and demonization of the Jewish state -- is a clear and unequivocal expression of antisemitism."

While the adoption of this definition is as yet only "symbolic and declaratory," it can form the basis for attacks on Palestinian solidarity at various levels. The funding of NGOs that are critical of Israel may be threatened. Public institutions will be pressured to deny meeting facilities for events that take the Palestinian side. It is also quite possible that this initiative could be taken further and the expression of anti-Zionist views actually be treated as a form of hate crime.

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