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Jack Layton


Alex Atamanenko

 
DOES JACK LAYTON'S NDP SUPPORT CANADA BOAT IN UPCOMING FLOTILLA TO GAZA? LAYTON SILENT AFTER NDP MP OFFERS SUPPORT

by Rhonda Spivak, June 9, 2011

Alex Atamanenko, the re-elected NDP Member of Parliament for B.C. Southern Interior, has just publicly endorsed the Canadian Boat to Gaza, which is set to join the international flotilla that will sail to Gaza,  to break Israel's naval blockade

The activists who hope to  force a confrontation with the Israelis want to bring international scorn down upon the Jewish State. [see our interview with Huwaida Araf, the Palestinian woman who organized last year's flotilla, which make sit clear that she does not recognize Israel's right to exist

Mr. Atamanenko, first elected in 2006, has support ed  the Gazan cause before. He was quick to condemn Israel for the original flotilla incident. He also criticized its military operations against Hamas terrorists in the Gaza Strip in 2008 and 2009.

But  the question is  whehter  his comments reflect  the policy  of the Official Opposition, the NDP. What does Jack Layton have to say about this?

Matt Gurney of The Natioanl Post wrote to Layton 's office on the evening of June, 2011.http://fullcomment.nationalpost.com/2011/06/07/matt-gurney-silence-from-ndp-as-veteran-mps-endorses-canadian-gaza-boat/

As Gurney wrote: "On Monday evening, I emailed both Mr.Atamanenko and a senior official in the Office of the Leader of the Official Opposition asking Mr. Atamanenko the questions below:

1. Have you endorsed the objective of the Canadian Boat for Gaza, or had contact with them that they may reasonably have interpreted as an endorsement?

2. Does the Official Opposition endorse the goals of the Canadian Boat to Gaza?

3. If yes to the first but no to the latter, was the Office of the Leader of the Official Opposition aware of your endorsement of the Canadian Boat to Gaza?

More than 14 hours later, nothing has been sent in reply."

It remains to be seen whehter Layton will in fact distance himself from his MP's remarks--or whether, he will continue to be silent, which will suggest that,

Gurney also wrote " This wouldn’t be the first time the NDP has had an MP go off the reservation when it comes to Israel. Last year, also shortly after the original flotilla incident, NDP Deputy Leader Libby Davies was filmed calling for a boycott of Israel and saying that the occupation began in 1948. Given that Israel came into existence as a state in 1948, the only realistic interpretation of those comments was that Israel, all of it, was an occupation and that it had no right to exist on occupied land. Mr. Layton reacted quickly, speaking to the Israeli ambassador to Canada, to assure her that Ms. Davies’ position did not represent the NDP position. Ms. Davies also sent a letter to the embassy and Mr. Layton was publicly critical of her comments.

That was the right thing for Mr. Layton to do. One wonders if a similar response from Canada’s Official Opposition will be coming now that one of its veteran MPs has seemingly endorsed a group that is deliberately seeking confrontation with the armed forces of an ally."

 
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Rhonda Spivak, Editor

Publisher: Spivak's Jewish Review Ltd.


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