Over the past three weeks Israel has killed over 8,000 Palestinians and injured 20,000 more. The more than 8,000 missiles Israel has launched into the Gaza Strip have destroyed around 20,000 buildings. Reportedly, the quantity of explosives that have been dropped on an area the size of Montréal exceeds 12,000 tons, which is equivalent to the size of the atomic bomb the US dropped on Hiroshima.
Israel has cut off Palestinians’ access to water, food, electricity and communications infrastructure. The UN says civil order has collapsed with desperate people looting food and supplies.
There’s growing evidence that Israeli officials are seeking a second “Nakba”. They want to depopulate Gaza, which threatens Zionism’s demographic aims. Reportedly, Israel’s Ministry of Intelligence has endorsed an Institute for National Security and Zionist Strategy plan to displace Palestinians from Gaza. On Friday Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu painted the population there as the biblical Amalekites whose eradication was commanded by God. Netanyahu declared, “You must remember what Amalek has done to you, says our Holy Bible.” 1 Samuel 15:3 notes, “Now go and smite Amalek, and utterly destroy all that they have, and spare them not; but slay both man and woman, infant and suckling, ox and sheep, camel and ass.”
Last Tuesday Canada’s defence minister Bill Blair defended Israel’s criminality and declared that Hamas must be eliminated. He said, “I think they have a right to defend themselves against that terrorist threat. And quite frankly, Hamas has to be eliminated as a threat not just to Israel but to the world.”
As Blair echoes a perspective that means slaughtering tens of thousands, Justin Trudeau has rebuffed calls for a ceasefire. Instead, the prime minister has raised a “humanitarian pause”. As Michael Tracey noted, “the term ‘humanitarian pause’ is a next-level innovation in preposterous war euphemism. It was invented so politicians don’t have to call for a ceasefire but can still pretend to have deep ‘humanitarian’ concerns, while a WWIl-style bombardment takes place.”
In foreign affairs committee Bloc Québécois MP Jean Denis Garon asked if Canada had a position on whether cutting of access to aid, water, food, fuel and electricity to Gaza was a breach of international law. The answer was that “Canada has not taken a position on that.”
At the United Nations on Friday, ambassador Bob Rae abstained on a UN resolution calling for “protection of civilians and upholding legal and humanitarian obligations.” It was backed by 120 countries.
Prior to abstaining, Rae proposed an amendment to condemn Hamas’ “deliberate cruelty”. Rae’s bid to single out Hamas failed. Pakistan’s ambassador Munir Akram responded to ‘Genocide Bob’ by noting, “he does not feel the need to name Israel for killing 7,000 Palestinians and injuring 17,000. Only Hamas. Is this balance? He says ‘what needs to be named has to be named’. We believe Israel needs to be named. If you are fair. If you are equitable. If you are just.”
While Trudeau’s ambassador was enabling war crimes at the UN, the PM met members of the genocide lobby in Montréal. On Friday Trudeau visited the CEO of Federation CJA Yair Szlak, Centre for Israel and Jewish Affairs Quebec Vice President Eta Yudin and other apartheid campaigners. Liberal MPs Anthony Housefather, Anna Gainey and Rachel Bendayan participated in the meetings. They were photographed with Trudeau in front of an Israeli flag purportedly listening to Jewish students who feel besieged (by counterparts who oppose the killing of 3,200 Palestinian children).
About the same time as the genocide enthusiasts got together in Montréal, 200 rallied in front of Bendayan’s office in a (prescheduled) Independent Jewish Voices event. Early on Friday 50 sought to disrupt the Prime Minister’s speech at the swanky Saint James club in downtown Montreal. With protesters blocking the garage and other exists, Trudeau was forced to walk past dozens chanting “shame”, “Israel terroriste, Trudeau complice” and “Trudeau Trudeau you can’t hide we charge you with genocide.” While the dominant media seems to have ignored the protest, a video I did of Trudeau being told he has blood on his hands has been viewed by more than 8 million on X and hundreds of thousands more on other social media platforms.
Vancouver, Sudbury, Saint John’s, Winnipeg, Toronto and Ottawa saw some of those cities largest ever Palestine protests on the weekend. The largest Palestine solidarity protest in Canadian history took place in Montréal on Saturday. 20,000 marched to tell Trudeau to stop enabling Israel’s genocidal siege and violence in Gaza.
On Monday Palestine solidarity activists occupied the offices of 17 different MPs across the country. Additionally, five were arrested blocking INKAS Armored Vehicle’s plant in Toronto.
An October 21 and 22 survey asking whether “Canada should support Israel in its armed conflict against Hamas” found that 30% of the 1,484 Canadians strongly disagreed while 19% strongly agreed.
While our government and political establishment continues to enable Israel’s extreme right wing government, more and more Canadians are saying no to genocide.