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Statement on Terrorist Attack in Bulgaria

July 18, 2012

Toronto, ON – Bulgarian and Israeli officials have confirmed media reports of the bombing of an Israeli tour bus at Sarafovo Airport in the city of Burgas. At this point, reports state that at least seven Israelis have been killed and twenty others wounded.

In response, David Koschitzky, Chair of the Centre for Israel and Jewish Affairs, made the following statement:

“We offer our deepest condolences to the families of the victims and our prayers for a full recovery for all those maimed in this brazen attack.

“It is important to note that today marks the anniversary of the notorious 1994 attack on a Jewish community centre in Buenos Aires – the worst bombing in Argentina’s history. Combined with the upcoming 40th anniversary of the Munich massacre, it is clear that the one constant of terrorism is that Jews around the world remain a favoured target. We are hopeful that authorities will be successful in their pursuit of those responsible for today’s attack, and demonstrate that terrorists and their overseers will face justice – not impunity – for such atrocities.”

As the advocacy arm of the Jewish Federations of Canada, the Centre for Israel and Jewish Affairs is a non-partisan organization that creates and implements strategies for the purpose of improving the quality of Jewish life in Canada and abroad, increasing support for Israel, and strengthening the Canada-Israel relationship.

AIPAC Applauds Congressional Passage of the U.S.-Israel Enhanced Security Cooperation Act

Bill Recommends Ways to Bolster U.S. Security, Advance Our Relationship with Israel
AIPAC applauds the House’s passage of the U.S.-Israel Enhanced Security Cooperation Act of 2012—which the Senate approved on June 29. The bill will now go to the President for his signature.

The United States benefits greatly through enhanced cooperation with Israel. This bipartisan bill recommends new avenues to grow and strengthen the U.S.-Israel relationship in the fields of missile defense, homeland security, energy, intelligence, and cyber-security.

Israel is an anchor of stability in an increasingly unstable region. As uncertainty on the Jewish state’s borders grows and tremendous changes jeopardizing American and Israeli security interests sweep the Middle East, this bill sends a powerful signal that the United States and its ally Israel will stand shoulder-to-shoulder.

AIPAC applauds the efforts of key Congressional leaders to ensure this bill’s passage. The Senate bill was spearheaded by Sens. Barbara Boxer (D-CA) and Johnny Isakson (R-GA), while the House bill was led by House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-VA) and House Democratic Whip Steny Hoyer (D-MD). Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) and Republican Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) also played key roles in the bill’s approval while Sens. John Kerry (D-MA) and Richard Lugar (R-IN) were instrumental in expeditiously getting this bill passed through the Foreign Relations Committee.

receiving Winnipeg Jewish Review

11 July 2012

Hi Rhonda,

I would like to tell you how much I enjoy receiving Winnipeg Jewish Review.  I feel like it keeps me connected to the community in a very easy and user-friendly way.

I am writing because we had a really unique and wonderful experience this year with our Bat Mitzvah - aged daughter through a program called Bat Mitzvah Club which is run through Winnipeg's Chabad organization.  The organizer is Chana Hedingsfeld.

This is a really great program offered to Grade Six girls in preparation for their Bat Mitzvahs.  It does not matter what denomination you belong to as all girls can get involved.  I just thought that we wanted Rachel to understand the importance of becoming a Bat Mitzvah and I was really impressed with the messages that this program had to offer the girls in light of the mass media images that bombard our young women today with regard to how they should look, dress and act. 

I cannot speak highly enough of this program and wanted to bring it to your attention, in case you hadn't heard of it already.  It would be wonderful if other girls in our community knew about it.

Attached is a speech that I delivered at the very beautiful and meaningful closing ceremony on June 20th.  All of the girls wrote and delivered a speech about a meaningful Jewish Woman (thereby developing their research, interviewing and public speaking skills).  I was the parent who was asked to speak from a parent's perspective that evening.

There are many wonderful pictures available from the closing ceremony as well.

Thanks for your time,

Jessica Cogan

Re: Rabbi Green's article on great Jewish leaders past and future

Thursday July 5, 2012
Dear Editor: 

Please pass on to Rabbi Green my compliments for his lovely article (posted June 15, 2012) on what makes a great leader of Judaism as he reflected on his 20 years here in Winnipeg.   His list of past leaders and his poetic and succinct way of summing up their contributions was a pleasure to read.  I particularly appreciated his acknowledgment that the Holy One works in marvelous ways, often through people who never darken the door way of a synagogue or religious institution.  I have experienced this same phenomenon in my own Christian tradition, a fact  captured most eloquently by St. Augustine (430 CE): “Not all those that the Lord has, the church has; and not all those that the church has, the Lord has.”  As a hospital chaplain for the past 23 years, it has been my task from time to time to call upon Rabbi Green to serve the spiritual needs of our Jewish patients who were sick and dying (and their families). He has always been welcoming, open and generous with his time and wisdom.  I am so glad to see that his wisdom is being spread further afield through your publication and wish him well in the next 20 years of his ministry. Hopefully this wish will be received as a blessing and not a burden to our former Californian Rabbi.

Tim Frymire

Coordinator of Spiritual care, Riverview Health Centre.

Jewish Community Expresses Solidarity with Sikh Community After Racist Graffiti found at Elementary School

11 July 2012

Upon learning of the racist graffiti spray-painted on a Sikh elementary school in Brampton, Ontario The Centre for Israel and Jewish Affairs and UJA Federation of Greater Toronto issued the following statement: 

“UJA Federation of Greater Toronto and the Centre for Israel and Jewish Affairs offer our solidarity to members of the Sikh community which have been affected by this act of hatred,“ said UJA Federation chair Elizabeth Wolfe. “This is a cowardly attempt at intimidation.” 

“It is shameful that in this day and age an elementary school would be subject to such racism. In a civil society, an attack like this is rightly seen as an attack against all, which violates our core Canadian values of human rights and respect for all faiths,” noted David Spiro, The Centre’s co-chair for the Greater Toronto area.

“To the Jewish community in particular, the swastika represents hatred and evil; symbolizing the murder of six million Jews. We are grateful that Peel Region police are taking this matter very seriously and we have full confidence that they will do everything in their power to bring the perpetrators to justice,” said Spiro.

The Centre for Israel and Jewish Affairs is the advocacy arm of Canadian Jewish Federations

For further information, please contact:

Jordan Kerbel

Deputy Director, Communications

The Centre For Israel and Jewish Affairs

Telephone:  416 317-9517


Germany Bans Brit Milah: Please Sign the Petition

6 July 2012

 Petition against German Ban on Brit Milah

June 24, 2012: AGerman court declared that Brit Milah (religious circumcision) isagainst German law.

July 1, 2012: The Jewish Hospital inBerlin suspended all religious circumcisions based on theruling.
We are sending the following petition to the German Embassy in Israel. Pleaseclick here to go to the petition and sign it.

We, the undersigned declare that Germany has absolutely no moral orethical right to pass any laws or make any statements regarding BritMilah (circumcision) or on any other Jewish practice.

Germany, permanently stained with the blood of 6 million Jews, has notlearned the lessons of history, and the German court's recent ban oncircumcision is an act of overt and explicit anti-Semitism.

It is a mark of shame on the German people.

Never Again!

Please forward this petition to everyone you know who would wantto demand an end to this blatant anti-Semitism.

Thank you.
©2012 |JewishPress 4915 16th Avenue Brooklyn, NY 11204

Challenge Cologne circumcision ban, demands B'nai Brith

27 June 2012

– B’nai Brith Canada has communicated the Canadian Jewish community’s outrage to the German government over a Cologne district court’s ban on circumcision, a core, 5, 000-year-old tradition of monumental significance to the Jewish faith. B’nai Brith Canada has called on the German government to immediately step in and challenge the District Court of Cologne’s ban on circumcision.

Frank Dimant, CEO of B’nai Brith Canada, issued the following statement:

“Circumcision is not merely a tradition that has been carried out since Judaism’s  inception; it is a fundamental principle of the Jewish religion. This is certainly not the first challenge to the Jewish people’s millennium-old quest for religious freedom; countless nations in history have tried and failed to prevent the continuity of the Jewish people and their traditions.”

“We believe that the District Court of Cologne’s recent ban on circumcision flies in the face of Germany’s post-war legacy of religious freedom and harkens back to its dark past when institutional discrimination led, step by incremental step, to the Holocaust, the most heinous crime in human history. It is ironic that the current ban on circumcision has taken place in a city that itself saw the mass execution of 11, 000 Jews during those dark days.

For more information, please contact Aaron Rosenberg,

Communications Officer at (647) 227-4404 and [email protected].

 B’nai Brith Canada has been active in Canada since 1875 as the Jewish community’s foremost human rights agency



AIPAC Applauds Senate Passage of the U.S.-Israel Enhanced Security Cooperation Act

 June 29, 2012

WASHINGTON — AIPAC applauds the Senate passage of the United States-Israel Enhanced Security Cooperation Act of 2012 (S. 2165). This bipartisan bill—which passed by unanimous consent with 69 cosponsors—recommends several ways to strengthen U.S.-Israel strategic cooperation in the fields of missile defense, homeland security, energy, intelligence and cyber-security. 

As the United States faces an increasingly dangerous environment in the Middle East—the mounting threat posed by Iran, instability in Syria and the strengthening of the Iranian-backed terrorist group Hizballah, whose reach stretches into the Western hemisphere—now is the time to enhance our strategic cooperation with our stable, democratic ally Israel.

AIPAC applauds the efforts by Sens. Barbara Boxer (D-CA) and Johnny Isakson (R-GA), as well as Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) and Republican Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY), to ensure that this important legislation was passed. Sens. John Kerry (D-MA) and Richard Lugar (R-IN) were instrumental in expeditiously getting this bill passed through the Foreign Relations Committee. The House passed similar legislation—led by House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-VA) and Democratic Whip Steny Hoyer (D-MD)—in May by a vote of 413-2.

AIPAC calls on Congress to reconcile expeditiously these two bills to bolster the ties between the United States and Israel.

 Consistently ranked as the most influential foreign policy lobbying organization on Capitol Hill, AIPAC is a bipartisan American membership organization that seeks to strengthen the relationship between the United States and Israel. For more than 50 years, AIPAC has been working with Congress to build a strong, vibrant relationship between the U.S. and Israel. With more than 100,000 members across the United States, AIPAC works throughout the country to improve and strengthen that relationship by supporting U.S.-Israel military, economic, scientific and cultural cooperation.

 Contact: Adam Harris, [email protected]

Re: Israel Advocacy on Campus?

 June 23

 Dear Rhonda,
Back in April you ran an editorial (Israel Advocacy on Campus: Fund Them and They Will Go)that I am still thinking about.  You stated that when you were a university student, you attended the General Assembly of Jewish Federations which helped ground you in your advocacy of Israel and Jewish history.  I have made inquiries and found that this support for our current university students has been discontinued.  Is this due to lack of funding or lack of interest?
Given the fact that the new president of U.M.S.U. is an ardent IAW activist, as are several of its members,it seems to me now is the wrong time to neglect projects which affirm our young people's identity.  Based on what I have heard personally, from students who weathered this past UAW as well as the ongoing attacks throughout the year, they are being thrown to the wolves.
When did providing strong support for our leaders of tomorrow fall off the agenda?
Is somebody out there listening?

Braden Gates/Emma Cloney 7:30pm Sat.Jun.23? - Coffee House

The Grant & Wilton Coffee House presents:   Braden Gates / Emma Cloney
Emma Cloney is a talented local singer/song-writer.
Braden Gates from Edmonton is on his cross-Canada tour and coming to sing/play for us. Also, Samantha Marie is going to do a few songs for us as well.

 Saturday June 23, 7:30pm
1077 Grant and Wilton,   across from Grant Park Shopping Centre
Doors open at 7:00pm, Tickets $10, Tel: 488-0207  includes Coffee/Tea & a Munchie.
Bring friends & family for a coffee/tea, a munchie (included) and come  for an casual evening of excellent music.  For later, stay for an interactive Phil & Friends music session. The magic comes from everyone bringing their own spark - who knows how hot it will be!
Fun, Set to Music

 Phil Spevack, Partner - 488-0207
[email protected]
David Au, Partner - 885-4245 [email protected]
 The Grant & Wilton Coffee House
 1077 Grant Avenue at Wilton

 Also: "bluelight" @ Juss Jazz, 240 Portage Ave. Friday, June 15 9:30 - 1:00

Re: Statement by MP Joyce Bateman regarding reports of vandalism at Yad Vashem in Jerusalem

June 11, 2012


 I wanted to share this important statement made by MP Joyce Bateman in the House of Commons on behalf of our Conservative Government regarding reports of vandalism at Yad Vashem in Jerusalem.

 Joyce Bateman, Member for Winnipeg South Centre (CPC): Mr. Speaker, I rise today to express the Canadian government's solidarity with the people of Israel and the Jewish community around the world after this morning's reports of vandalism at Yad Vashem in Jerusalem.

 The Yad Vashem Holocaust Museum is dedicated to the commemoration of the six million Jews murdered during World War II.

 The mission of Yad Vashem is in line with our government's belief in the importance of Holocaust education and dedication to speaking out against anti-Semitism. Holocaust education helps ensure such atrocities never reoccur.

 An important expression of Canada's dedication to Holocaust education is our involvement with the Task Force for International Cooperation on Holocaust Education, Remembrance and Research, which we will proudly chair in 2013.

 Canada is committed to teaching future generations about the Holocaust, about the poisonous effects of anti-Semitic and xenophobic hatred and about the prevention of all acts of genocide.


 Hon. Jason Kenney, PC, MP

Calgary Southeast


Statement on Canada’s Support for a Minute of Silence at the 2012 Olympics

June 12, 2012

Toronto, ON – This summer marks the 40th anniversary of the Munich Olympics, at which 11 members of the Israeli national team were murdered by Palestinian terrorists. Despite requests from the state of Israel and others in the global community, the International Olympic Committee (IOC) has so far refused to allow a minute of silence in honour of the victims of Munich at the opening ceremonies of the 2012 Games.

In recent weeks, the Centre for Israel and Jewish Affairs has engaged with key officials in Canada’s federal government, as well as leading members of the opposition, to urge Canada to call on the IOC to reverse its decision. As a result of these efforts, the Centre is pleased to announce that an official letter expressing disappointment on behalf of Canada has been sent to the IOC by Minister of Foreign Affairs John Baird and Minister of State for Sport Bal Gosal. A parallel Liberal Party parliamentary initiative to have a motion in the House, led by MP Irwin Cotler, speaks to the cross-party consensus from which Canada’s stance has emerged.

In response, David Koschitzky, Chair of the Centre for Israel and Jewish Affairs, issued the following statement:

“We applaud the Government and members of the opposition for this principled initiative. In calling on the IOC to reverse its shameful decision to refuse to honour those slain at Munich, Canada once again stands out as a moral leader on the world stage.

“As Jewish Canadians recall the horrors of the Munich Games, at which 11 innocent men were targeted simply because they represented the Jewish state, we are grateful that Canada has joined this growing international campaign. There is still time for the IOC to do the right thing, and we are hopeful it will finally heed the calls issued by Canada, Israel, and others around the world.”

The Centre for Israel and Jewish Affairs is a non-partisan organization that serves as the Canadian Jewish community’s official spokesperson to government and media.

 For more information, contact:

Steve McDonald

Associate Director, Communications


[email protected]


Keren Kayemeth LeIsrael KKL-JNF (Israel's Green NGO)

7 June 2012

Keren Kayemeth LeIsrael and the Israel Ministry of Agriculture on behalf of the State of Israel are delighted to be able to share our experience in sound water and land management, specifically in dry land areas. Keren Kayemeth LeIsrael KKL-JNF will provide an interactive course with group work, not only to impart knowledge, but to provide consultation and practical solutions, for specific cases facing the countries of the participants.


As Israel is a country with limited space and resources, sustainable land management and water use is of paramount importance. For 60 years, our country has been a laboratory for R&D and applied practices in this subject area. KKL-JNF is an NGO that deals in a variety of ecological projects to improve the quality of life for people in and outside of Israel.

KKL-JNF has worked hand in hand with Israeli government Ministries to achieve best practices for land management. It has rich experience in developing sustainable afforestation and agricultural practices in semi-arid - arid regions. By using advanced techniques for watershed management, soil conservation, & biological control and drought resistant species; it is able to turn ecological challenges into opportunities. The KKL-JNF policy is to share its knowledge with communities around the world free of charge.

KKL-JNF's Learning Center in RIO+20

Three instructors will conduct interactive presentations on three topics:

  1. Advanced practices for gully control and Afforestation in Semi arid environments
  2. Ancient Nabataen agricultural practices renewed with Modern techniques.
  3. Varied practices for water Harvesting (limanin, contour banks)
  4. Multipurpose land use in afforestation in dry land areas including, water recycling, grazing practices, agro forestry and ecotourism
  1. Tree improvement: Traditional and New Methods for selection and propagation of drought resistant species – including Nursery principles and practices for producing quality saplings. (Fast growing & nectar producing species)
  2. Forest Planning – using proper planning to secure the future of forests
  3. Statutory protections and process
  4. Detailed planning
  5. Public involvement in forest planning


In addition, the participants will be divided into three groups and rotated respectively, on the various topics. In these groups, specific case studies from the participants will be analyzed, and concrete solutions will be offered (applied practices and low tech techniques). The idea is not only to share KKL-JNF's experience, but to offer individual consultation and practical solutions to the participants.

The three instructors are: David Brand, KKL-JNF Head Forester and Research Director and Itshack Moshe, Deputy Director of KKL-JNF's Southern Region.


Interview suggestions:

Mr. Itshack Moshe -

Topics for interview:

- Development of afforestation in arid areas as a way of adapting to climate change, using a unique method that is based on principles of ancient agriculture. He uses runoff rain as a biodegradable resource transforming the element responsible for soil erosion into an element that helps develop vegetation by collecting and inserting it into different soil. This method can be a model for similar geographical regions in other countries dealing with sustainable development.

Director of afforestation, soil conservation and is the Deputy Director of KKL-JNF's Southern Region.

Dr. David Brand -

Chief Forester for Keren Kayemeth LeIsrael, KKL-JNF.

Topics for interview:

" Water harvesting and afforestation as a means to rehabilitate degraded lands."

  1. Advanced practices for gully control and Afforestation in Semi-arid environments.
  2. Tree improvement: Traditional and New Methods for selection and propagation of drought resistant species – including Nursery principles and practices for producing quality saplings.
  3. Means and Measures of dealing with invasive species.

Natalie Kahan-Behar
 Keren Kayemeth LeIsrael,  Foreign Press media adviser 
Eden Communication

 Office: 972-77-2066617/5/1
 Mobile: 972-52-3773265


Keren Kayemeth LeIsrael KKL-JNF (Israel's Green NGO) is Sending Three World Experts from Israel to the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development in Rio, Brazil from June 20th till June 22nd.

Re: David Matas; Is Reconciliation for the Holocaust Possible?

June 5, 2012
To the Editor

Sure. It is never too late for antisemites to reconcile to the Jewish people. But would they? It does not look probable. One thing I often hear from ignorant people is, "when are the Jews ever going to shut up about the holocaust? I wasn't even alive when it happened? Why can't they just get over it?" With sometimes clenched teeth I respond, "I wasn't alive then either, but I still have to endure the ignorance of the past through people like you who have the Jews branded."
M Peti

Jewish community applauds Toronto City Council's condemnation of fallacious term "Israeli Apartheid"

7 june 2012

TORONTO – B’nai Brith Canada has commended Toronto City Council members on the passage of a motion condemning the use of the fallacious term "Israeli Apartheid" at Toronto’s Pride parade. The term has been used by Queers Against Israeli Apartheid, an anti-Israel protest group that plans to participate in this summer's parade, in reference to the State of Israel.  B'nai Brith is anticipating Toronto City Council's upcoming anti-discrimination policy debate where it hopes the policy will be revised to prevent the use of the term "Israeli Apartheid" at taxpayer-funded events.

Upon passage of the motion at today’s Toronto City Council session, Frank Dimant, CEO of B’nai Brith Canada issued the following statement:

“Queers Against Israeli Apartheid’s participation in Pride Toronto not only defies logic, berating the sole Middle East country that fully welcomes the LGBT community, but also runs counter to the original philosophy of the parade itself, a celebration of diversity and acceptance. The passage of this motion condemning the use of the term “Israeli Apartheid" at Pride has signaled to Toronto, and indeed the entire country, that hate and intolerance are not welcome at Canada’s largest Pride festival. This is an important step as the City of Toronto joins numerous other Canadian government voices in recognizing that the "Israeli Apartheid" label is fallacious and divisive."

For more information: [email protected]

B’nai Brith Canada has been active in Canada since 1875 as the Jewish community’s foremost human rights agency

Suggestion: Ms Rosenthal should talk to Itamar Marcus of PMW

4 June 2012

Itamar Marcus, the director of PMW - Palestinian Media Watch did an extensive revierw of incitemnt in the PA, including a review of school textbooks.
Guess who he presented it to?
Happens that it was Hillary Clinton when she was Senator from New York and very interested in attracting & keeping Jewish votes.
She stated how appaled she was at this state of affairs...
Her tune seems to have changed since she stopped being an elected official in need of votes.
At a press conference releasing the PMW report in the US Senate building in February 2007, then US Senator Hillary Clinton said:

“These textbooks do not give Palestinian children an education; they give them an indoctrination. When we viewed this [PMW] report in combination with other media [from other PMW reports] that these children are exposed to, we see a larger picture that is disturbing. It is disturbing on a human level, it is disturbing to me as a mother, it is disturbing to me as a United States Senator, because it basically, profoundly poisons the minds of these children.”

Wilf Mandel

Stop anti-Israel bias in NDP caucus, says B’nai Brith Canada

31 May 2012

Canada's Jewish human rights organization, B’nai Brith Canada, has alerted NDP Leader Thomas Mulcair regarding its concern over anti-Israel sentiment in his caucus. The organization has learned that Deputy NDP Leader Megan Leslie has been selectively promoting several anti-Israel events on her NDP website, such as “Halifax Israel Apartheid Week”, a week of activities that has been denounced by government and community leaders as promoting hatred and intolerance on campus. Just last week, Leslie advertised an anti-Israel program referring to the “illegal occupation” of the Palestinians.

Deputy NDP Leader Libby Davies has also been actively campaigning against Israel by bringing forward a petition in the House of Commons unfairly criticizing the Jewish State and calling on the Government of Canada to change its position towards Israel. B’nai Brith is calling on Thomas Mulcair to ensure that the NDP maintains an inclusive policy platform that supports the Jewish State.

Frank Dimant, CEO of B’nai Brith Canada, issued the following statement:

“While we greatly admire Thomas Mulcair’s strong personal conviction in support of the Jewish State, which he has articulated publicly on multiple occasions, we do have concerns as to the growth of anti-Israel propaganda within the NDP. We are calling on the NDP leader to formulate a definitive, principled party stance regarding the Jewish State, to fully condemn the growing demonization of Israel within his party and to ensure that the NDP does not allow itself to be misused to spread anti-Israel propaganda.”

For more information: [email protected]

B’nai Brith Canada has been active in Canada since 1875 as the Jewish community’s foremost human rights agency

B'nai Brith Canada

15 Hove St.,Toronto, M3H 4Y8, Canada


May 25, 2012

 Thank you for this. Quite fascinating.

 Isi Leibler, Jerusalem

22 Canadian Jews Honoured with Queen Diamond Jubilee Medals

25 May 2012 

 TORONTO, 22 Canadian Jews were presented with Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medals for their dedication and service to Canada during B'nai Brith Canada's annual National Policy Conference.   The recipients were awarded the historic honour before a record 200 guests including, cabinet ministers, members of the diplomatic core, public officials, community leaders, friends and family.

 On the occasion of the 60th anniversary of the accession to the throne of Her Majesty The Queen and the 137th anniversary of B'nai Brith in Canada, the ceremony presented medals to pioneering philanthropists, such as Dr. Max Glassman, Joe Lebovic and Joe Bogoroch as well as noted human rights advocates, such as Frank Dimant, CEO of B'nai Brith Canada, Ruth Klein, B'nai Brith Canada's national director of advocacy and Michael Mostyn, B'nai Brith Canada's chair of government relations, for the substantial impact they have made on the lives of all Canadians and their enormous contributions to the enhancement of the nation.
At a similar ceremony in Montreal, Quebec, medals were presented by Senator Larry Smith to Eric Bissell, national president of B'nai Brith Canada, Ted Greenfield, B'nai Brith International vice-president and Marilyn Frankel, founding chair of the Institute for International Affairs of B'nai Brith Canada.
B'nai Brith Canada has offered its warmest congratulations to the medal recipients and has expressed its deepest gratitude to them for their unparalleled devotion to Canada and the Canadian Jewish community.
The recipients of the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal are: 

Dr. Max Glassman, Joe Lebovic, Joe Bogoroch, Dr. Frank Dimant, Eric Bissell, Ruth Klein, Michael Mostyn, Pearl Gladman, Anita Bromberg, Dr. Leon Genesove, Harold Davis, Allan Adel, Judith Foldes, Norm Gordner, Jules Kronis, Henry Schnurbach, Toni Silberman, Dennis Tolson, Gerry Weinstein, Dr. Aubrey Zidenberg, Ted Greenfield, Marilyn Frankel
For more information and photos of the event, please contact Aaron Rosenberg, Communication Officer, at (647) 227-4404 and [email protected].
B'nai Brith Canada has been active in Canada since 1875 as the Jewish community's foremost human rights agency.

Analysis of Amnesty's 2012 World Report


25 May 2012

JERUSALEM - In response to Amnesty International's 2012 World Report, NGO Monitor today released the following statement:

· As in many previous reports, Amnesty continues to level unsupported allegations of violations of international law against Israel, including "collective punishment." In contrast, the organization expressed uncertainty regarding the legal significance of the murder of more than 8,000 Syrians by Bashar al-Assad, claiming that these deaths "may have constituted crimes against humanity". Israel is mentioned 137 times in the report as opposed to 74 mentions for the Syrian regime.

· In the 2012 report, Amnesty accuses Israel of "collective punishment" (pg 48) of the Palestinian population, in the form of a blockade against Gaza, which is controlled by Hamas. In making this false claim, the authors of Amnesty's report have stripped away the context. For instance, the organization ignores that Israel's blockade was implemented to stop the smuggling of weapons and rockets used to target Israeli citizens. In September 2011, the UN Secretary General's Palmer Committee found that the naval blockade of Gaza is legal under international law, explicitly rejecting Amnesty's claims. In addition, Amnesty fails to report on the thousands of tons of goods provided by Israel to Gaza every week.

· Amnesty also minimizes the ongoing rocket attacks targeting Israeli civilians ranging from Ashkelon and beyond, and terrorizing over one million Israelis, who flee to bomb shelters and suffer severe psychological trauma with every attack. While Amnesty label's Israel's actions as "crimes" under international law, it fails to use this designation for the thousands of indiscriminate Palestinian rocket attacks - every one of which is a war crime.

· In a few brief references to attacks, this report blandly states that Palestinian groups "fired indiscriminate rockets and mortars into southern Israel, killing two people and endangering the lives of others." (pg. 267) The phrasing "lives of others" is a gross understatement for characterizing an ongoing campaign of rocket attacks targeting Israeli population centers.

· Amnesty continues to level the false claim that Israel had "failed to conduct independent investigations into alleged war crimes by Israeli forces during Operation 'Cast Lead'." Israel has conducted hundreds of investigations into the events relating to the 2008-09 war. Judge Mary McGowan Davis, empanelled by the Human Rights Council to lead the follow-up committee to the Goldstone Report, found that "Israel has dedicated significant resources to investigate over 400 allegations of operational misconduct in Gaza." Judge Goldstone, himself, has noted "our main recommendation was for each party to investigate, transparently and in good faith, the incidents referred to in our report. McGowan Davis has found that Israel has done this to a significant degree."

· Amnesty's report again repeats unsupported Palestinian casualty claims, which, as in the case of the 2009 Goldstone Report on the Gaza war, are often demonstrably false. For example, in the summary of the response to attempts to storm Israel's borders in May 2011, the report claims that "Up to 35 people were reportedly killed when Israeli soldiers fired at thousands of Palestinian refugees and others who protested on 15 May and 5 June at the Lebanese border with Israel and the Syrian border with the Israeli-occupied Golan." (pg187). The claim of 35 killed is not supported by any credible sources.

· Amnesty continues to repeat the claims of unreliable Israeli and Palestinian NGOs, without any independent review. For example the report cites the findings of Yesh Din, despite the fact that the methodology it employs has been discredited.

· The false allegations and double standards in the Amnesty report reflect the employment of Deborah Hyams, whose history of anti-Israel activism is well documented, as a researcher for "Israel, Occupied Palestinian Territories and Palestinian Authority". In 2008, Hyams was signatory to a letterclaiming Israel is "a state founded on terrorism, massacres and the dispossession of another people from their land." In 2002 Hyams "said that while she does not condone suicide bombings, she personally believes they 'are in response to the occupation.'" Hyams has worked for a number of radical advocacy NGOs, including the Alternative Information Center (AIC), Jews for Justice in Palestine and Israel (JPPI), Rachel Corrie Foundation, and Ma'an Network.

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  • Lakeside Roofing
  • Gulay Plumbing
  • Malaya Marcelino
  • Sean Fisher
  • Kristina's
  • The Center for Near East Policy Research Ltd.
  • Sarel Canada
  • Santa Lucia Pizza
  • Center for Near East Policy Research
  • Roofco Winnipeg Roofing
  • Center for Near East Policy Research
  • Nachum Bedein
  • Maric Homes
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.