Dr. Yousef Jabareen MK, member of the Israeli Knesset, is one of the new generation of Palestinian leaders. A Palestinian citizen of Israel, 44 year old Jabareen will be in Ottawa for a week of meetings with Canadian officials, NGOs and other civil society organizations. At his only public event, on Tuesday, October 18th, he will present his “Vision for hope” in the Israeli/Palestinian conflict. Learn more…
There are about 1.5 million Arab citizens of Israel. They are not Jewish but they form about 20% of the Israeli population. They have the right to vote, and are represented in the Israeli Knesset (parliament). Jewish Israelis prefer to call them “Israeli Arabs”, but they usually refer to themselves as “Palestinian citizens of Israel”. (Sometimes the term they use is “Palestinians of ’48,” referring to those who remained in what became the State of Israel in 1948.)
Dr. Jabareen, a human rights lawyer and lecturer, was first elected to the Israeli Knesset in 2015. He is one of the 13 member “Arab Joint list”, which acts in a coordinated way inside the Knesset. (There is also one Jewish member of the Knesset who is part of the list.) It is not an easy task to represent excluded or alienated citizens. Recently, the Knesset adopted a law that makes it very easy for the (Jewish) majority to expel any Knesset member not seen as sufficiently loyal to the Jewish State of Israel.
The Palestinian/Israeli conflict:
A vision for hope
Dr. Yousef Jabareen, MK
Tuesday, October 18th 7:30 p.m.
First Unitarian Congregation
30 Cleary Avenue, Ottawa
Public meeting – all welcome – free admission -donations accepted
free parking – OC transpo Bus route #2.
During his week in Ottawa, Dr. Jabareen will have private meetings with Canadian officials, elected politicians, labour leaders, think tanks, academic groups and other NGO’s. He will also have separate meetings with members of Ottawa’s Jewish and Palestinian communities.
He has two objectives on his mind:
First, he wants to bring to the attention of opinion leaders in Canada that the 1.5 million Palestinians citizens of Israel face considerable challenges struggling for equal rights with Israel’s Jewish citizens.
Secondly, he is interested in better understanding how Canada protects minority rights – including language rights and the rights of its aboriginal people. Canada may not be perfect, but he feels he may be able to learn something useful in Canada which he could try to press for in Israel.
Comment: If Dr. Jabareen wants to learn something in Canada that might be of use to him, or to the Palestinian citizens of Israel, who do you suggest he meet in Ottawa, and why?
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Sounds like a wonderful visit. Thanks for posting. To answer your question: He must visit with CIJA leaders. Also, our own MP, Robert Falcon Ouelette (Winnipeg Center), has had a number of meeteings with Palestine advocates, and seems very eager to learn more.
If you know Mr. Ouellette, and you think he would be interested, please ask him to contact me. I would be happy to try to arrange a meeting. My email: email@example.com
I forgot to answer your suggestion about CIJA. Its not clear to me that a visit with CIJA would be a good expense of his time, though I am sure he would not be opposed in principle. I don’t think they are very open to his message even if he were to get a meeting. On the other hand, we do have a very interesting private event lined up with a group of about 20 Ottawa Jews – some liberal, some less so. He is looking forward to exchanging views with them.
I don’t know if you have the contacts but I would say for objective (2) Quebec historians and political scientists. Quebec over the last 250 years achieved an almost best case outcome for Palestine. Quebec went from a French Catholic territory hated by both what would be British Canada and New England region of the USA and thus politically and economically oppressed to an integrated part of Canada with full equality and a high degree of integration. It has been able to change the definition of Canadian nationalism in a way that allows for a traditional, French and Catholic part of the country to exist peacefully without the individuals coming from that culture being trapped in it and thus allowing Quebecois (and now the region entirely) to take advantage of being in Canada. They have been able to control their violent nationalist forces to prevent them from driving Quebec into wars with the larger neighbors that it can only lose. Any politicians still alive who when young who were part of the Quiet Revolution would be gold.
Quebec is in short a wonderful model for achieving an outcome I think most Palestinians, and Israeli Arabs in particular, would be quite happy with. British Canadian leftists are going to be cheerleaders for a liberal humanitarian Palestinians but not offer much useful insight to a still active conflict. Not shockingly I believe that BDSers are mostly ignorant of history going to encourage Israeli Arabs to adopt a tone and policies so threatening to Israelis that they will achieve the opposite of what Yousef Jabareen wants. Had Quebec continued for generations to be ungovernable and loyal to France there probably wouldn’t be a French Catholic population of Canada today.
So FWIW that’s who I would have him talk to. A people who mostly accomplished the goal at living in peace with a much more powerful nation.
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