Government-Funded Vancouver-Based “Feminist” Magazine Accuses Israel Of Genocide

October 30, 2023

In an attempt at moral musings on the Middle East war, Room Magazine, a Vancouver-based self-described “feminist literary magazine,” has shown its readers how extensively lacking its writers are in basic understanding of the conflict—and how well anti-Israel disinformation has thoroughly impacted many media outlets.

In an October 19 letter sent to email recipients entitled: “Readers, writers, and publishing peers: we call on you to educate, take action, and aid Palestine,” the magazine regurgitated anti-Israel falsehoods with little concern for nuance, context or even basic historicity.

The letter asserted that, as a feminist publication, it is their duty to stand “against the occupation of Palestine” and condemn the “ongoing genocide and apartheid.”

These allegations are outlandish and ludicrous.

Firstly, Israel has never committed any “genocide” against the Palestinians. Since Israel’s independence in 1948, there has been a dramatic increase in the population of Palestinians in Judea & Samaria (often called the West Bank by news media outlets), and the Gaza Strip. There has also been robust population growth of Arabs living inside Israel, where today more than two million Arabs live as fully equal citizens of the State of Israel—currently finding themselves under constant rocket assaults alongside their Jewish neighbours. 

This remarkable level of population growth is simply impossible if anything even remotely justifying the term “genocide” had taken place during that span.

Calling Israel’s defensive war against Hamas a “genocide” is not only inflammatory and inaccurate, but it flips reality on its head. While Israel takes measures to avoid civilian casualties, Hamas’ charter unabashedly calls for the destruction of the State of Israel through violent means. In other words, genocide by any other name. The Hamas massacres on October 7 were just the latest example of how serious they are about carrying out their genocidal plans.

Nowhere in the letter does Room apply its same anti-genocidal concerns towards Hamas’ stated intentions. On the contrary, it demands a ceasefire, which means stopping Israel from acting to prevent the actual genocide that Hamas overtly seeks to accomplish.

The number of deaths in Gaza cited by Room make no distinction between combatants and civilians, or between deaths caused by Israeli airstrikes versus misfired Hamas rockets.

There is no question that the loss of civilian life in Gaza is tragic, but to point the finger squarely at Israel is to effectively ignore Hamas’ direct culpability. Israel has publicly and repeatedly warned civilians to leave the main war zone before stepping up its bombardment, while Hamas actively and forcefully prevents civilians in Gaza from fleeing to safety.

Room’s letter also claims that Israel has “illegally occupied Palestine since June 1967.” This is also demonstrably false.
Prior to June 1967, there was no Palestinian state, and consequently, Israel could not have occupied “Palestine” since then. In reality, Israel acquired these territories from Egypt and Jordan in a defensive war. The statement would still be false, as Israel unilaterally withdrew its entire civilian and military presence from the Gaza Strip in 2005, turning over full control to the Palestinians.

Room Magazine’s letter represents the height of irony, as a self-described feminist magazine parroting the disinformation of Hamas, a genocidal, misogynistic terrorist organization, while accusing Israel – a liberal, democratic state – of easily refuted allegations.

These allegations would be expected from anti-Israel activists, but are deeply troubling coming from a magazine that receives funding from the City of Vancouver, the Province of British Columbia, and the Government of Canada.

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