Canadian medic wounded in Gaza shares his story of courage and determination at Toronto event

 

Dr. Tarek Loubani, a Palestinian Canadian doctor, was shot in both legs last May by an Israeli sniper in Gaza. He was one of 1700 wounded on that day alone. He talked about what he saw and felt at a recent lecture organized in Toronto by Canadian Friends of Sabeel. Learn more…

“Shooting someone on purpose is an intimate act”, Dr. Tarek Loubani told a capacity crowd at Victoria College in Toronto. “The sniper has to follow you carefully, before pulling the trigger.”

Loubani says 19 other identified medical personnel were also shot by Israeli snipers that day. He does not know whether medics were targeted as a deliberate act of Israeli policy, but notes that during the six weeks of protests up to that point NO medical personnel had been shot. “Certainly, the high number of wounded medical personnel is troubling”, Loubani admitted.

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“I don’t frighten easily” Loubani told the crowd,  “but something about this day really gave me a dread.”

He was in Gaza to provide medical services to Palestinian demonstrators protesting their 12 year incarceration in what the Norwegian Refugee Council and others have called an “open air prison”.

Loubani runs the Glia Project, an organization which seeks to provide medical supplies to impoverished areas. Glia has created designs for 3D-printable stethoscopes and other medical instruments. He was supervising field tests of a 3D-printed tourniquet when he was shot.

Loubani’s wounding led Canada’s Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to issue a rare criticism of Israel’s action. We are appalled that Dr. Tarek Loubani, a Canadian citizen, is among the wounded – along with so many unarmed people, including civilians, members of the media, first responders, and children,” said Trudeau.

Loubani was the featured speaker at this year’s James Graff Memorial Lecture in Toronto. Graff had been a professor at the University of Toronto who made bringing attention to the plight of the Palestinian people a key activity. The lecture is an annual event organized by Canadian Friends of Sabeel (CFOS).

His half hour presentation (plus another hour of Q&A)  is now available on Youtube.

Loubani became well known to Canadians when he was interviewed by CBC after his wounding. He is respected not only for his courage under fire, but also for his careful and understated manner, which adds to the credibility and authenticity of his reporting.

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Canada Talks Israel Palestine (CTIP) aims to promote a serious discussion in Canada about the complicated and emotional Israel/Palestine issue. This requires a good knowledge about historical facts. If we have our facts wrong, please help us. We encourage brief comments (under 100 words) from serious readers. To learn more about what we do, contact us at chair.ctip@gmail.com. 

4 comments

  1. Every Friday after murdering Peaceful demonstrators and shooting thousands mostly in the knee with Dum Dum bullets, which shatters the area bones and necessitates amputations, Israel “justified” it saying that they were afraid Of “thousands of terrorists attempting to enter Israel and kill many”. If that was the case why put sharp shooters and not the army to shoot at the front rows.Of course there was no running toward the border, not any weapons fired, not even a knife. As we saw on dozens of videos, there were men, women and children scattered on a huge flat area, talking, praying, singing, eating or just sitting on the ground. The sharp shooters singled out individuals among the demonstrators, seeing the faces of the targeted ones with telescope mounted rifles.Dr. Lubani was 300 meters from the border. The Israeli criminal defense minister said that they knew where every bullet ended up. So why did they kill about 200 people and wounded about 15,000. There’s one explanation. By using utmost brutality they wanted to put an end to the peaceful demonstrations, being afraid that it might spread to other places like West Bank and than Israel won’t be able to tell the world that all Palestinians are terrorists, keep Gaza sealed and steal more land in W.B. Also eliminating any empathy toward the Palestinians from people around the world and criticism of Israel. They repeated this king of ideology many times like in Jenin, south Lebanon, murdering ten activists in international waters sailing toward Gaza with medical supply and of course three times massacres in Gaza before.
    Israel is a criminal state with total disregard to any non Jew. How many years and how many daily atrocities we need to witness, in order to call Israel for what it is and raise our voices.

  2. The uncritical pro Israel lobby in Canada Bnaibrith and Cija: tried to undermine and defame Dr. Loubani; did not have one word of caution or sympathy for the 000s of dead and wounded Palestinians,; defended without qualification the murderous, excessive Israeli tactics and demanded that PM Trudeau withdraw his mild critical remarks which Bnai Brith Pres said were an insult to Cdn Jews which these orgs claim to represent. IJV excepting.

    The Can govt has said and done nothing since about violence except condemning the ahootings of Israelis. Most recently Govt PM Trudeau and For minister Freeland condemned the deaths of Iaraelis including the 2 IDF soldiers and unborn baby of Canadian parents living in the illegal Jewish settlements in occupied territories under very questionable status. (Have enquired about the legal and consular status of Cdn citizens living in settlements and have had no response – pribably too hot a potato for Govt o respond to).

    Hopefully Dr Loubani’s visit might jar the Govt to actually forcing progress towards a soln, 1 state or 2 which is supposedly Canada’s policy. You can be certain that the Israel lobby will be stalking and undermining any sense of a fair and balanced Canadian policy on Israel Palestine.. (Bnai brith Canada has blocked me from their twitter feed, probably for reminding them Too often that the international consensus of a 2 state soln with minority protection in both Israel and Palestine is the only to end the 70 years of violent conflict and pokitical rhetoric, as well as preserve a Jewish majority & democratic & hrights respecting Israel in which you would think the lobby would be interested

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