A special CTIP editorial
This blog – Canada Talks Israel/Palestine sticks pretty well to the issue of human rights for Palestinians and Canada’s poor track record of supporting them. We rarely stray off this issue.
However, the similarities between our history of colonisation of Canada’s indigenous peoples and their lands, and that of Israel’s toward the Palestinians is remarkable.
June 21 is National Indigenous Peoples Day. This is a day for all Canadians to recognize and celebrate the unique heritage, languages, diverse cultures and outstanding contributions of First Nations, Inuit and Métis peoples. The Canadian Constitution recognizes these three groups as Aboriginal peoples, also known as Indigenous peoples. Although these groups share many similarities, they each have their own distinct heritage, language, cultural practices and spiritual beliefs. These have been ignored or suppressed, a practice which a former Chief Justice called “cultural genocide.”
Our understanding of Canada’s history with respect to indigenous peoples is increasingly seen in the framework of “settler colonialism” described by Wikipedia as “a structure that perpetuates the elimination of indigenous people and cultures to replace them with a settler society“
This is also the frame that is being used to understand the relation between the Palestinians, indigenous to that area, and the State of Israel.
June 21, National Indigenous Peoples’ Day, is a good time to reflect on Canada’s history and current policies at home and abroad.
Canada Talks Israel Palestine (CTIP) is the weekly newsletter of Peter Larson, Chair of the Ottawa Forum on Israel/Palestine (OFIP). It aims to promote a serious discussion in Canada about Canada’s response to the complicated and emotional Israel/Palestine issue with a focus on the truth, clear analysis and human rights for all. Readers with different points of view are invited to make comment.
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