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University of Toronto Grad Student Union Passes BDS motion against Israel-- Will Grad Student Union at U of M be Next?

by Rhonda Spivak, Jan. 17, 2012

[Editor's note: Given that the University of Manitoba now has a President that has openly supported Israel Apartheid Week, our Hillel group and community leadership ought to be aware of what happened at University of Toronto this past month.]

The University of Toronto Grad Student Union passed a BDS motion against Israel on December 10, 2012.

As the Jewish Tribune has reported, the motion was passed in a rather sneaky way : "The anti-Israel motion was not on the agenda, but it was accepted as additional business by the meeting chair after the meeting began."

Additionally, "the room appeared to be stacked with students who supported the BDS movement and knew about the motion in advance."

The CJN reports that when " the motion was brought up at a council meeting last year with due notice and fair representation of the graduate student population, it failed..."

"This time, there was no advance notice of the motion, so nobody except the people pushing for the endorsement knew about it, Israela Stein, a political science graduate student and Hillel spokesperson told the CJN. “Obviously, that changed the balance of the vote.”

The BDS move at University of Toronto follows three other university student councils that officially adopted the BDS campaign in the past year – Carleton University, the University of Regina and, most recently, York University.

As reported in the Jeiwsh Tribune, the resolution states “Be it resolved that the Graduate Students [sic] Union endorse Palestinian civil society’s 2005 call for boycotts, divestment and sanctions by calling on the University of Toronto to refrain from investing in all companies complicit in violations of international law. This includes any company that: profits from the illegal occupation of Palestinian land; directly benefits from the construction of the Wall [sic] and Israeli settlements; is economically active in settlements, and profits from the collective punishment of Palestinians. “This would include the companies BAE Systems, Northrop Grumman, Lockheed Martin and Hewlett Packard.”….

Both the Jewish Tribune and Canadian Jewish News articles are worth a full read:


Jewish Tribune, Dec. 27, 2012 


Cara Stern

CJN, Dec. 28, 2012

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Rhonda Spivak, Editor

Publisher: Spivak's Jewish Review Ltd.

Opinions expressed in letters to the editor or articles by contributing writers are not necessarily endorsed by Winnipeg Jewish Review.