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History repeats itself, with Canada's help
Alastair Gordon
National Post

In 1939, when the Nazi program to kill the Jews of Europe was well underway, 907 desperate German Jews aboard the S.S. St. Louis requested sanctuary in Canada. The Liberal prime minister of the day, Mackenzie King -- who had previously flirted with Adolf Hitler and declared him to be "one who truly loves his fellow-men" -- refused their request. Most died in the death camps of Europe. In 1942, 1,000 Jewish children in a French refugee camp were denied entry to Canada and were liquidated by the Nazis. Of Jewish immigration to Canada, Mackenzie King's immigration minister declared, "None is too many!"

Of course today, we mourn these murdered refugees. We mourn the friends, neighbours, doctors, business people, teachers, writers, engineers, cab drivers, philanthropists and scoundrels who would never be part of the Canadian fabric, because our Liberal government was indifferent to their fate and sympathetic to their persecutors. With such a weight on our collective conscience, we will never again side with the killers of Jews.

Or will we?

When a Canadian Jew, Yechezkel Goldberg, along with 10 other innocents, was massacred recently by a Palestinian terrorist on a bus in Jerusalem, the Canadian ambassador to Israel, Donald Sinclair, was ordered not to visit his grieving family because they lived in the West Bank, a place that official Canadian policy, as well as the suicide bomber and his handlers, believed should be Judenrein (Jew-free). By this order, Canada validated the racist grievance of the Jew-killers.

How much has changed when Israel, the only democracy in the Middle East, is also the only country targeted for condemnation by United Nations resolutions? Since 1996, there have been 113 resolutions condemning Israel. Canada's vote was 78 yes, 35 abstain and 0 no. Canada's support for the vilification of Israel and the fact that precisely zero resolutions have been tabled criticizing the Palestinian Authority tells us that this is an exercise in global bullying, not even-handed moral suasion.

If our Liberal government was guided by a moral compass that reflected Canadian respect for life and freedom, we would have voted 'no' on every anti-Israel resolution. But what if Israel really is guilty of some imperfection that deserves censure? Until UN resolutions are applied even-handedly in the Middle East -- against suicide bombing, against slavery in the Sudan, against Syria's illegal occupation of Lebanon, against Saudi Arabia for nurturing the mass murderers of 9/11, against the Palestinian Authority for its bloodstained brainwashing of children, against Muslim nations for their misogynistic treatment of women -- then these resolutions have nothing to do with Canadian values, and everything to do with justifying genocide.

But, hold on, the real reason for terrorism is the illegal Jewish occupation of Palestinian land. Our Liberals reinforce, rather than debunk, this mythology, a failure that leaves our government open to accusations of pandering rather than leading. For more than 2,000 years, Jews lived and contributed throughout the entire Middle East, until anti-Semitism and physical threat drove the Jews from every Arab country. Today, the Middle East is 99.8% Jew-free and no Jew can safely live as a citizen except in a miniscule 0.2% known as Israel. This sliver of land -- Israel -- is all that Jews have left.

Today, six million people live in a land without oil or other natural resources, and have created the only democracy in the entire region, the only country with world-class universities, hospitals, technology, freedom of speech, freedom of religion, and rights for women, gays and minorities. In fact, Israel is the only country in the Middle East where Arabs can vote for their representatives in free elections. Amazingly, Arabs are full members of the Israeli Knesset (parliament) and sit as judges in the Israeli judiciary. The deputy speaker of the Knesset is Abdulmalik Dehamshe, an Arab representative. Both Israeli Arabs and Palestinians have free access to the Israeli Supreme Court, and have won cases against the Israeli government.

Yet Canada's voting record at the UN says that Israel is the only country deserving of condemnation. Our government sides with the killers of Jews hoping that, by joining the mob, "Damascus will return our phone calls," to quote a prominent Liberal MP.

As Walid Shoebat -- former Fatah terrorist turned Christian -- said recently in Toronto, "The only illegal occupation in the Middle East is the illegal occupation of Palestinian minds by hatred."

He also observed, "The Holocaust never ended. The only difference is that today the Jews have a country and an army." And so the Holocaust continues, and our Liberal government chooses to condemn its victims and appease its perpetrators. Can someone please tell me what's changed since 1939?

Alastair Gordon is communications director for the Canadian Coalition for Democracies.

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