General Romeo Dallaire was in London, Ontario a couple of weeks ago speaking to a varied audience about Canada's dwindling international presence. Perhaps nowhere was that decline so clearly obvious as in Foreign Affairs Minister John Baird's speech to the UN General Assembly and its vote on Palestinian recognition.
Whenever Hamas attacks Israel, who responds with the bombing of Gaza, opinions are wide spread. Often they are tainted by racism, xenophobia, and all out insanity. That is a huge problem when you look at America's relationship with Israel, and how many in Washington, and the media, side with the 62-year-old country.
Analysts and pundits will be all over themselves trying to find a "winner" in this conflict between Gaza and Israel. While the world's cameras and attention were turned to Gaza and Israel (and rightfully so), the Syrian regime sustained its killing of Syrians at the usual pace of over 100 civilians per day. Not only did Assad gain from having the media shift focus to one of the longest enduring conflicts of the region, the Syrian dictator also benefited from returning the anti-colonialist narratives to deciphering the Middle East.
Call it what you want -- bald-faced pandering to rich Jewish donors and pro-Israel voters (a lot of whom, by the way, aren't actually Jews), or even racist, which is how the Palestinian government's Saeb Erakat termed it -- but the Republican candidate's comment during a speech in Jerusalem about the primacy of Israeli culture as compared to Palestinian culture was a fair point.
If relative silence on morally indefensible Israeli policies like the settlements is indeed because liberal Zionism is becoming less popular, I hereby urge my fellow Diaspora Jews to come clean: If you believe in Israel, what kind of Israel do you believe in? And if you have stopped believing in Israel, what would it take to get your Israel back?
This week begins an annual part of the global campaign to delegitimize and vilify the Jewish state as anti-Israel activists and student groups on campuses around the world, including United States and Canada, mark the eighth annual Israel Apartheid Week [IAW]. One leader, Ahmed Moor, wrote that ending Israel's occupation will require a "Final Showdown."
If you obsess about Israel's supposedly murderous nature, yet feel neutral about Guatemala, Nigeria, Indonesia, Brazil -- each of which (though arguably not guilty of genocide) is responsible for the outright massacre of at least 100,000 innocent civilians -- then you are a bigot. You may not be an anti-Semite. But you have a problem with Jews.
The Islamists may be gaining ground but all indications are that the Arab masses are finally becoming more skeptical about the endless recourse to the red herring of Israel by their leaders to distract them from the despotism and misrule that has been imposed upon them by theocracies and secular states alike throughout the post-colonial era.)
Many Israelis are asking themselves how they could release so many Palestinians who carried out or were involved in violent terrorist activities. Would they return with a renewed vengeance? Will the release of one Israeli soldier result in future Israeli civilian and military casualties? Will more Israeli soldiers be kidnapped?