Can the Federal NDP be saved?

We rightly criticize the United Nations and its agencies like UNESCO and the UN Human Rights Council (HRC) for their blatant anti-Israel bias. They play a leading role in the demonization and delegitimization of the only Jewish country, Israel. The HRC, for example, has condemned Israel more than the other 192 countries of the United Nations combined – about 78 times. In comparison, Syria has been condemned merely some 30 times (despite killing 500,000 of its own people), North Korea – 10 and  Iran – just 7.

As absurd, yesterday the UN appointed Syria to a top post fighting the “subjugation of peoples” – according to UNWatch.

But little, tiny democratic Israel with eight and a half million people and smaller than British Columbia’s Vancouver Island – that’s fair game. Israel was also fair game for Canada’s third largest political party at the NDP Federal Convention in Ottawa this past weekend. ‘Social Justice’ for the NDP means a frontal assault on the Jewish state brought on by the Party and its committees and riding associations.

In its published resolutions booklet, Israel was singled out in well over a dozen policy resolutions – more than any other single state. In comparison, non-democratic human rights abusing states like Saudi Arabia, Myanmar, Russia and Afghanistan were mentioned less than half that number of times – combined! Worse, two other resolutions appear to be standing up for Cuba and Venezuela, countries with horrendous human rights records.

The best upside-down ‘social-justice’, however, came in defence of the Islamic Republic of Iran. The proposed resolution encouraged the “Liberal Government…to re-engage with Iran…re-establish formal diplomatic relations…”. The promoters of this resolution actually complained that the “breaking of diplomatic and economic ties with Iran by the previous Conservative Government harmed the Iranian-Canadian community, deteriorated Canada’s international standing, and prevented Canadian companies from trading with Iran.” Just  Ask Christians, Bahai’s, or Kurds how welcoming Iran is.

It appears as if it makes no difference to some in the NDP that the brutal Ayatollahs have now quashed two popular freedom uprisings; or that Canadians have been tortured and murdered in the notorious Evin prison (Marina Nemat and Zahra Kazemi-Ahmadabadi); or that Iran is pursuing nuclear weapons while being accused by the world community of being a state sponsor of terror through its proxies – Hezbollah and Hamas. If the NDP truly cares about “democracy” as its middle initial attests, how could its members even consider coming to the defence of non-democracies?

All the while it appears that non-democracies are supported, and real purveyors of violence and terrorism defended, Israel is unabashedly attacked. True, only one resolution made it to the floor at the end of the day and it called for peace, which is nice. And most NDP executives and members likely abhor the radical left which is attempting to turn the party on its head. But the massive number of anti-Israel proposed resolutions cannot be ignored: They called for the “labeling of settlement” (Jewish) goods; they denounce the move of the US embassy to Jerusalem; they want to curtail Israel’s military and nuclear program; they want to implement economic sanctions against the entire State of Israel and call disputed territories “illegal” (an effort to criminalize the state).

The icing on the cake was a shocking Globe and Mail report that an American political activist known for homophobic and antisemitic rhetoric and for being aligned with Louis Farrakhan, the leader of the Nation of Islam, was invited to speak at the convention.  There does not seem to be a counter narrative calling on Palestinians to stop firing rockets into Israel; to stop murdering Jews and to cease and desist from incitement and antisemitism.

Since the war against the Jews cannot be won militarily or through terrorism, Israel’s enemies are working overtime to hijack political parties, twist their understanding of ‘social justice’ and launch an economic, psuedo-academic, pseudo-scientific and cultural strangulation of this beautiful island of freedom in the Middle East. The NDP vanguard should be more critical.  Like Canada, Israel is far from perfect, but it is pretty good in comparison to its neighbours. And that’s what makes this hypocrisy all the more disturbing.

It’s sad to see this happen to the NDP.

About the Author
Avi Benlolo is the President and CEO of Friends of Simon Wiesenthal Center for Holocaust Studies (FSWC), a Jewish non-profit human rights organization. Avi is a prominent Canadian human rights activist dedicated to promoting tolerance, freedom, democracy and human rights.
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