My latest: Hamas U.

Their heroes take hostages.

So, now, they’re doing likewise.

Right now, today, that’s what us happening at California State University in Los Angeles: a pro-Hamas gang – after illegally occupying university property for weeks – have taken hostages. As I write this, somewhere between 50 and 100 “protestors” have blocked the ground floor exits at the Student Services Building at CSU, and set up barricades around the building.

They vandalized the inside of the building, stolen equipment, and used trashed vehicles to set up a barricade at the front of the building.

And they took hostages, just like their Hamas heroes in Gaza.

The school’s president, Berenecea Johnson Eanes, was “sheltering in place” in her office on the eighth floor on Wednesday and Thursday. And an unknown number of staff were being held inside the building, too. Meanwhile, outside the building, university employees were told to leave, quickly, because of the potential danger.

CSU spokesman Erik Hollins said: “I can confirm that there are still a small number of administrators in the building. We are working through options to bring this fluid situation to the best resolution possible.”

Across Canada and the United States, there are dozens of illegal occupations of university campuses like CSU. They claim to favor divestment of dealings with Israel. But – after a certain number of assaults of Jews and Hitler salutes and displays of Hamas symbols – everyone knows that just isn’t true, anymore.

After witnessing months of well-funded, well-organized “protests” at places of so-called higher learning, we all now know the truth: if you are wearing a mask at an “encampment,” chanting about genocide by the Jewish state, you are an antisemite. Full stop.

So who is overseeing this antisemitic madness on North American campuses? Who is really running the Jew-hating show at Canadian campuses like U of T and McGill, and American campuses like CSU and Columbia?

Picture a flowchart, with Students for Justice in Palestine (SJP) at the centre. It is the ringleader. It is the not-so-hidden hand. And it has hundreds of chapters across Canada and the United States, and now controls antisemitic and anti-Western activity at those campuses.

SJP’s activities are overseen by a shadowy group called National Students for Justice in Palestine (NSJP). The NSJP was created by something called American Muslims for Palestine (AMP). SJP is the offspring of NSJP, in effect, and NSJP is the child of AMP.

And AMP, as described in pleadings filed in the state of Virginia a few weeks ago, is “Hamas propaganda division” in North America. Anyone watching the insanity at places like CSU and McGill – which also saw a university building occupied a few days ago, until Montreal police drove them out with batons and rubber bullets – isn’t surprised by that. SJP, NSJP and AMP are pretty open about what they do, and how they do it.

But AMP, the grandparent of all this, is very, very circumspect about its ultimate parentage: it is a creation of the Muslim Brotherhood, which is behind every Islamic terrorist organization on Earth.

The Muslim Brotherhood created a Palestine Committee in the U.S. in 1988. That committee was itself made up of several organizations, like the Holy Land Foundation, the Islamic Association of Palestine and the American Muslim Society. All of them, it turned out, were working directly with Hamas on public relations efforts in North America.

But they all got caught. They were found criminally and civilly liable for aiding and abetting a terror group. They were shut down.

And then, just a few years later, a new alphabet-soup of pro-Hamas organizations rose out of the ashes of the old ones. They were led by most of the same people, at the same offices, doing the same things: AMP, NSJP, SJP. Except, this time, they’re being careful. They’ve learned their lesson.

Lane Kendall is a researcher and academic in the U.S. and has worked to untie the new web of pro-Hamas front companies and organizations. In an interview, Kendall said: “If you look back far enough into how SJP came to be, it connects directly to the Muslim Brotherhood. And the Muslim Brotherhood is very much a terrorist organization that is at the foundation of every terrorist movement in the Middle East. Without the Muslim Brotherhood, the SJP doesn’t exist. So that’s why we all should be concerned about SJP – because they’re very much in bed with, and funded by and organized by, the same people that are funding and organizing Hamas and Hezbollah.”

But why do terrorists bother with privileged, inexperienced white college students in the U.S. and Canada? Says Kendall: “The organizational power of students is underestimated. I’d be willing to bet, for example, that the Liberal Party of Canada depends very heavily on young voters. And if the Liberal Party has to cater to young voters, and all of a sudden young voters have the same policy that terrorist organizations have? Well, now you have terrorist organizations able to directly influence policymaking decisions at the highest levels.”

And, now, they’ve become so bold – and so indifferent to the rule of law – they’re taking hostages and shutting down public institutions. Concludes Lane Kendall: “We need to get to the bottom of the funding and the control of these organizations. Right now.”

Will we? Or will it take another hostage-taking – or a killing – to force us to finally act?

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“Necessary sacrifices”

CNN — 

The military leader of Hamas has said he believes he has gained the upper hand over Israel and that the spiralling civilian death toll in Gaza would work in the militant group’s favor, according to a report by the Wall Street Journal, citing leaked messages the newspaper said it had seen.

“We have the Israelis right where we want them,” Yahya Sinwar told other Hamas leaders recently, according to one of the messages, the WSJ reported Monday. In another, Sinwar is said to have described civilian deaths as “necessary sacrifices” while citing past independence-related conflicts in countries like Algeria.

My latest: a rally for sanity

Fifty thousand people.

Fifty thousand!

By any standard, that’s a lot. That’s about the population of Belleville, Ont. or Saint-Hyacinthe, Que.!

This week’s Walk for Israel was perhaps the biggest event of its type – ever. Bigger than the Covid-era protests, bigger than the Black Lives Matter rallies, bigger – in particular – than most of the anti-Israel, pro-Hamas hatefests that have been polluting Toronto streets for months.

The UJA Federation of Toronto, and the Toronto Police Service, deserve a lot of applause for pulling off an event of that scale – with little to no trouble. Just a bit of rain, but no one seemed to mind.

The 50,000 walked up Bathurst Street on Sunday morning, then gathered at the UJA’s leafy Sherman Campus, a little bit South of Finch. There was dancing, singing, play areas for kids – and lots of solemn displays to remember the victims of the October 7, 2023 massacre.

Some pro-Hamas types tried to disrupt the proceedings at a couple spots along the route, but Toronto police and private security the UJA hired kept them at bay. One pro-Hamas group even tried to break in to the festival area, but police caught them and sent them packing.

Lots of federal, provincial and municipal politicians were there. But Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Toronto Mayor Olivia Chow, notably, weren’t among them.

I spoke to some people about that. “I’m really mad at Olivia Chow,” one woman told me, citing Chow’s claim that it was “divisive” to acknowledge Israel’s flag on that country’s Independence Day. “But she should be here.”

Trudeau’s name was met with a lot of eye-rolling, too. His government has bobbed and weaved on Israel’s justifiable war against Hamas for months, trying to please all sides – and ending up pleasing no one. But he, too, should have been there – particularly with a crucial by-election in the Toronto St. Paul’s riding coming up soon.

So why weren’t Trudeau and Chow present?

They might have had other engagements – that’s an excuse politicians regularly (and falsely) deploy. But missing out on an opportunity to sway 50,000 voters to your side? Not smart.

Chow and Trudeau’s apparatchiks might also claim that there was no point in showing up – they’d get booed. They’d get yelled at.

Maybe. Perhaps. But anyone in public life knows that brickbats always accompany the bouquets. It’s part of the job. And, besides, there’s an easy way to avoid it. Just heed Democratic Party legend Tip O’Neill’s advice: “Never get introduced at a public event.” Simply show up and shake hands. That’s it. Word will get around.

Chow has falsely claimed the sight of Israel’s flag is “divisive,” as noted. Trudeau has wrongly accused the Israeli government of war crimes. By showing up, they’d be implicitly lending their support to the Benjamin Netanyahu government, their people might claim.

But again, they’re wrong. Showing up at a party with bouncy castles isn’t expressing support for a government waging a war seven time zones away. It’s showing support for a Jewish community who have been vandalized, defamed and firebombed in Canada in recent months. A community that feels isolated and unwanted. Showing support for people under siege is being a leader.

But Olivia Chow and Justin Trudeau aren’t being the leaders we expect them to be. They just aren’t. Increasingly, it seems they believe in a Canada where some citizens are more equal than others.

At the end of the Walk for Israel, as people walked to transit or their cars or their homes, some important things were achieved.

One, fifty thousand people showed up. That is a lot. That is a huge, massive success.

Two, there was no trouble. It was a joyous, pro-Israel, pro-Canada event.

Three, the people who mattered came out. The ones who don’t, didn’t.

Four, the walk sent a clear message: Canadian Jews and their allies won’t be intimidated. They won’t be silenced. They won’t give up.

And those things made it a very good day, indeed.

My latest: good guys 2, bad guys 2

Good guys: 2.  Bad guys: 2.

No, that’s not a statistical summary of the Stanley Cup Final.  The Edmonton Oilers and the Florida Panthers are just getting started.

It is, however, a fair summary of the past week.  And, as with just about every single week since October 7, there has been a confrontation between those who favor democracy and decency on the one side – and those who favor Hamas and rank antisemitism on the other.

The victories seem to be hard to come by, in these dark and dangerous times.  But our side has actually had some wins, and both came on Thursday.  

One was at McGill University in Montreal, where the first anti-Israel/pro-Hamas (take your pick) “encampment” was set up. For weeks, the Infant-fada has occupied a large area near McGill’s fabled Roddick Gates, falsely accusing Israel of genocide and displaying signs like this one: ON OCT. 7 ISRAEL KILLED ITS OWN PEOPLE & COVERED IT UP TO JUSTIFY GENOCIDE.”

This week, the “protestors” – CBC called them students, but the university has said 80 per cent of them aren’t – stormed into McGill’s administration building.  They forced out anyone who worked there, barricaded doors, destroyed furniture, and unfurled banners mocking the Holocaust.

Hours later, riot police arrived, quickly cleared them out – and, once outside, charged at them with batons and tear gas.  The mob faded away, but not before fifteen were arrested. Score one for the good guys.

Down the 401 at York University, masked Israel-haters decided to ape the McGill cabal and set up an “encampment” of their own on Wednesday.  “Our tuition funds genocide,” their signs said – which would be news to everyone with a functioning brain, because Palestinian population growth regularly dwarfs Israel’s by about 35 per cent.

Undeterred by pesky facts like that, the Hamas horde set up tents in the Harry W. Arthurs Common at York’s Keele campus.  As at McGill, most were “persons unknown to the university,” York said.

The university did not mess around: it served trespass notices on the aspiring campers on Wednesday, and Toronto police cleared them all out within ten minutes at 8 a.m. on Thursday.  One Hamasnik who wandered back was arrested.  Another win for the good guys.

Not all the news has been good this week, however.  

Around the same time that McGill and York were doing the right thing, Toronto city employees were apparently doing the polar opposite in the St. Paul’s neighborhood, which has a significant Jewish population. On Tuesday evening, city workers were photographed hacking down posters of Jews (and non-Jews) who have been held hostage, or murdered, by Hamas.  The city workers left untouched posters advertising free landscaping estimates and a Strawberry Social.

The city workers used a machete-sized blade to remove the posters, which were in front of the newly-opened Cafe Landwer on Spadina – a restaurant which is owned by Jews, and which has been targeted for anti-Semitic attacks in recent months.  When one of my readers objected, the grinning city workers said they were “following orders,” which has a certain Nuremberg ring to it.

The reader – her name is Hannah, but she did not want to give her full name because she fears retribution – wrote to her Toronto city councillor, Josh Matlow, to say: “Why in the world were they doing such a HORRIBLE thing?…With firebombs, shots fired at Jewish schools, (need I even go on?) you ought to be keenly aware of the heinous levels of anti-Semitism in Canada.  This hostage poster removal project lends itself well to the disgusting violence against the Canadian Jewish community which YOU have permitted to continue.”

When I contacted city media representatives, they said posters about “local community issues” were acceptable, but others – hostage posters, apparently – were not. Hannah was told the same thing by a Matlow staffer after the Sun started making inquiries.

Over at CBC, scores of CBC employees this week issued a letter decrying (wait for it) “Islamophobia and anti-Palestinian racism within CBC.” 

Leaving aside the fact that Palestinians are not a “race,” the signatories claimed that CBC has a “pattern of anti-Palestinian bias, Islamophobia, and anti-Palestinian racism within the corporation’s news and documentary culture.”

That would certainly be news to many Canadian Jews.  As Canadian Jewish News has written, CBC has long been a repository for anti-Israel “distortions, biases, and clichés,” with “distorted and harmful portrayals” of Jews and the Jewish state. Meanwhile, as Robert Walker has written for Honest Reporting Canada, “CBC completely ignores Hamas” and its crimes.  

A CBC spokesperson said they “welcome the feedback,” adding: “The tensions we are experiencing at CBC are a microcosm of what’s happening all over the world and that’s to be expected; this is such an emotionally charged topic, personal as it is divisive.”

So, a wash of a week.  Two victories for the side of decency, two wins for the side that seems to be indifferent to the fate of Jews.

Two steps forward, two steps back.

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