Concordia Student Newspaper Columnist Laughably Calls Anti-Israel Movement “Peaceful” & Dishonestly Redefines Zionism

June 21, 2024

A recent opinion column in The Link, a student newspaper at Concordia University, pulled off a small miracle, demonstrating that it is entirely possible to spend thousands of words, all to say nothing at all.

The June 12 column by Jacob Wade-Vallance entitled: “Will Concordia give in to the pro-Israel lobby,” devoted nearly 2,000 words to attempting to portray the violent, hateful, aggressive anti-Israel movement as a bunch of pussycats, helplessly being oppressed by those more powerful.

The article was co-authored on behalf of Independent Jewish Voices (IJV), an organization which has defended Palestinian terrorism against Israelis.

“The Palestinian liberation movement is constantly under threat by various forces, whether it is by police violence at peaceful protests, by our universities cancelling events or by politicians who falsely portray the movement,” Wade-Vallance wrote in his cantankerous commentary.

In fact, Wade-Vallance repeated the term “peaceful” four times when referring to the anti-Israel movement, as if he were attempting to hypnotize readers into believing him. Unfortunately for him, evidence abounds of the violence, intolerance and explicit support for Islamic terrorism that has come to define the anti-Israel movement, both in Canada and beyond.

There are many adjectives that can be used to describe the anti-Israel movement, but peaceful is not one of them.

Much of Wade-Vallance’s column is a rehashing of the same inane lies lobbied at Israel, including accusations of genocide and the like, but the bulk of the piece is devoted to attempting to frame the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA) working definition of antisemitism as being an effort to suppress pro-Palestinian voices. Importantly, a similar article was published in The Link recently as part of the newspaper’s ongoing promotion of anti-Israel propaganda.

The IHRA definition itself is not opposed by anti-Israel activists, but some of its illustrative examples are what Wade-Vallance tookissue with, writing that “of the 11 (examples), seven point to critiques of Israel as antisemitism.”

This is an easily disprovable falsehood.

The IHRA definition cites examples because in contemporary society, antisemitism has hidden behind a mask of anti-Zionism, where denying the Jewish People their collective right to self-determination has become the hallmark of the anti-Israel crowd.

However, nowhere in the IHRA definition are “critiques of Israel” conflated with antisemitism. In fact, the definition spells out explicitly that “criticism of Israel similar to that leveled against any other country cannot be regarded as antisemitic,” though unsurprisingly Wade-Vallance chooses to hide this fatal problem with his readers.

The IHRA definition has been widely adopted by Jewish communities around the world, as well as dozens of national governments, including Ottawa, and multiple provinces. And while it is clear that the IHRA definition does not refer to criticism of Israel as antisemitic, it is clear why Wade-Vallance and his ilk oppose it: because it calls out anti-Zionists for what they are: Jew-haters.

Wade-Vallance wrote that “Zionism is the Jewish nationalist movement to establish a Jewish ethnostate in Palestine, requiring the expulsion of Palestinians from their homeland.”

This is utter nonsense. Zionism is the Jewish People’s national movement for self-determination in their historic homeland, Israel. Indeed, the Israel is more than 20 percent non-Jewish, and where Muslims, Christians and other minorities are equal citizens under the law. It does not mandate any expulsion of anyone, least of all the Arab-Palestinians, many of whom left in 1948 after a failed attempt by Arab armies to annihilate Israel and commit genocide against the Jews.

Even as Jew-haters seek to mainstream their heinous views, anti-Jewish sentiments in Canada remain extremely fringe.

As a result, anti-Israel activists have pivoted to hiding behind the helpful term ‘anti-Zionist’ to refer to their ideology, meaning that they can claim to be opposed to antisemitism, all while working to strip away the Jewish People their collective right to determine their own future.

Jacob Wade-Vallance’s June 12 column in The Link is just the latest manifestation of this cynical attempt.

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