(image obviously from EoZ)
Virulently Anti-Israel Event Backed by Local Jewish Federation
A small, grassroots group of pro-Israel activists – Never Again Group (NAG) – has become a thorn in the side of the well-established Hamilton Jewish Federation. The Federation came out publicly in defense of what it believes is the right of Canadians for Justice and Peace in the Middle East (CJPME) to host a virulently anti-Israel event at a local YWCA, and then it censured NAG for its efforts to stop it.
CJPME and Independent Jewish Voices (IJV) praised the federation for its stand in favour of the event, which took place at the beginning of April and promoted Boycotts, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) against the Jewish state.
In a column by Wade Hemsworth in the Hamilton Spectator, Gerry Fisher, federation executive director, defended the YWCA’s decision to host the program.
In an email blast on May 4, Federation President Larry Levin said, “The Hamilton Jewish Federation has called the current conflict between CJPME and a small, independent group of pro-Israel supporters to be unfortunate….
“Hamilton Jewish Federation believes in the principal that until CJPME’s message is found to be in violation of Canada’s anti-hate laws, they are entitled to deliver it, free from intimidation or abuse from anyone, regardless of how dishonest and repugnant their messages may be.
“The real victim in this conflict is the YWCA. Caught between two extremist views, YWCA has innocently been drawn into and possibly damaged by a conflict that has no place in Hamilton.
“We stand with the leadership of the YWCA, the United Way and all others of good will in Hamilton who expect more responsible behaviour from those who attempt to influence public opinion.”
Levin also said in his email blast that it is “counter-productive for public recriminations to be made against [the federation] by groups or individuals who disagree with the federation’s positions.”
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