In 2010, Israeli forces stormed the Mavi Marmara which was trying to bring needed medical supplies to blockaded Gaza. Nine people were killed (a tenth died later) and dozens were wounded. The boat was seized. But Israel got a lot of bad publicity. This September, another boat with a female crew and passenger complement, will try again. Read more.
In a decade or so, the voices of the original Nakba survivors will be extinct. But 86 year old Mariam Fatallah remembers clearly being expelled from her village in 1948. She wants to be sure that others know what happened to her and hundreds of thousands of Palestinian refugees. She is making a tour of the USA and Canada to share her memories of expulsion and of living as a refugee in Lebanon. Read more
Globe and Mail Middle East Bureau Chief Patrick Martin told an Ottawa meeting that he was neither in favour of nor opposed to BDS, the international movement to boycott Israel. But in his presentation, he explained why he thinks Israel sees BDS as a “strategic threat”. He also explained, somewhat ominously, what Israel might thinking of doing about it. Read more. (more…)
At a big event organized last January by the Jewish community in Toronto, Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne announced she would lead a delegation to Israel. She said she wanted to promote “political, economic and cultural ties” . If she wants to get a balanced view of Israeli history, politics and culture, I have several suggestions for her team to consider. including in her itinerary. She leaves on May 15th, so there might be time to adjust her agenda. Read more.
The United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees (UNRWA) provides life-saving food, education and medical services to over 5 million Palestinian refugees, including these ones in Syria. The Harper government reduced to zero the Canadian financial contribution. The Trudeau government is hesitating about restoring funding. Read more