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.
Patrick Martin has more experience in the Middle East than any other Canadian journalist. Martin’s first visit to the Mediterranean region occurred in 1971, when he motorcycled across the entirety of North Africa. He was based in Jerusalem as the Middle East correspondent for the Globe and Mail for much of the 1980s. During that period, he covered the 1982 Israeli invasion of Lebanon, and the return of Yasser Arafat to the Gaza Strip. He continues to visit the area on a regular basis.
In the wake of the February 24th motion in the Canadian Parliament to condemn BDS, Martin wrote an article in the Globe and Mail outlining the 3 BDS demands and pointing out that all 3 of them are consistent with longstanding Canadian policy. He says that while his article was purely factual, it provoked a lot of hostile response from Israel’s defenders in Canada.
Martin was invited to speak on April 11th to the Middle East Discussion Group, an Ottawa forum moderated by Dr. Joe Debanne, which is focussed on justice and peace in the Middle East.
The whole event was captured on amateur video. The video starts with a 2 minute introduction of Martin by former CBC journalist David Halton. Martin’s very frank 30 minute presentation follows.
video credit: Dr. Qais Ghanem
Comments? Do you agree that BDS is a strategic threat to Israel? Are you concerned by recent hints by Israeli officials that appear to threaten BDS activists? Any and all respectful comments welcome.