Letters to the editor: The trouble with the Israeli-Palestinian conflict

Plus, will the real Doug Ford please stand up, the best movies list ever and saving the CNE in reader mail this week


Israel’s claim to Palestine  

What is troubling about Yves Engler’s column, The Push To Stop Israeli Military Recruitment In Canada (NOW Online, May 17), is that he completely ignores the modern scholarship proving the Jewish people’s ancient claim to the land dating back to the prophet Abraham. Palestine never existed. The term refers to what is now southern Jordan. In fact, the Romans used “Palestinian” to refer to a previous people known as “Philistines.” Palestinians are Arabs whose ancient origins include Saudi Arabia.

Israel’s claim to the land is legal, their defense of their Kingdom legitimate. The IDF should have full right to recruit wheresoever they please. 

Christopher Mansour – Toronto

Why are Canadian charities supporting Israeli military?

As Israel’s forces escalate their violence against Palestinians, Canada must apply its laws concerning support for foreign militaries.

The Foreign Enlistment Act makes it illegal to induce or recruit for a foreign military. The Canada Revenue Agency guidelines state that supporting the armed forces of another country is not a charitable activity, but some do anyway. This entirely disingenuous to Canada’s commitment to a two-state solution and lasting peace in the Middle East. Do you think Canadians should get a tax receipt for donating to the government of Myanmar to repress the Rohingya? The world is watching.

 Elizabeth Block – Jewish Voices For Peace

Social media not helping untangle the truth in the Middle East

Re How Social Media Is Complicating The Israeli-Palestine Conflict (NOW Online, May 18). The larger problem not captured in this story is how so much social media commentary is ill-informed and prejudicial. It’s hard to untangle fact from personal bias, ignorance or plain propaganda. News media have a role to play but most have been corrupted on this issue.

Frank Vetere – From NOWTORONTO.COM 

Will the real Doug Ford please stand up

Re COVID Mask Falls Off Ford (NOW Online, May 11) I have a belief – or delusion – that most senior politicians are more honest and less mean-spirited than the people who write their talking points.  If the person who occasionally complimented Justin Trudeau and Chrystia Freeland was the real Doug Ford, I hope we will continue to catch glimpses of him despite the new PC party’s campaign manager.

Bruce Couchman – Ottawa

Ford government acting in its own interests

Re Hidden Toronto: The Foundry Buildings (NOW Online, May 16) It appears that Mr. Ford and his government are aspiring to become an oligarchy, and are well on their way. There are too many of us who want to live in a democracy to allow that to happen. How is the Ontario provincial government with Mr. Ford at the helm getting away with implementing some of these self-vested decisions? They must be stopped before more irreversible damage is done.

Liz Dobrzanski – From NOWTORONTO.COM

Quite possibly the best movies list ever

Re The 50 Best Movies On Netflix Canada Right Now (NOW Online, May 15) This is the best, clear-cut selection of movies I’ve ever come across. Well done.

Terry Brown – From NOWTORONTO.COM

Celebrating the CNE post-COVID

Re Toronto Cancels All Major Summer Events, Including The CNE (NOW Online, May 15). Let’s keep our fingers crossed that, with the government of Ontario and the government of Canada coming up with a total of $11 million, the CNE will return to an in-person event in 2022. The annual fair is a major contributor to the local economy and an important part of Canada’s heritage. By that time, the pandemic would most likely be behind us. We’ve suffered enough from lockdowns, restrictions, lives lost and isolation. 

Elizabeth Holloway – From NOWTORONTO.COM

@nowtoronto

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One response to “Letters to the editor: The trouble with the Israeli-Palestinian conflict”

  1. Re: “Social media not helping untangle the truth in the Middle East” …

    Like so many other people, I have grown weary of general social media’s physical (and often identity) disconnect, through which the ugliest of comments can be and too often are made without consequence for the aggressor. What I find indispensable about social media in general, however, is that it has enabled far greater information freedom than that allowed by what had been a rigidly gatekept news and information virtual monopoly held by the pre-2000 electronic and print mainstream news-media.

    Besides the Black Lives Matter and George Floyd protests, I seriously doubt that Greta Thunberg’s pre-pandemic formidable climate change movement, for example, would’ve been able to regularly form on such a congruently colossal scale if not in large part for the widely accessible posting and messaging systems of Facebook.

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