Toronto Star Columnist Shree Paradkar Says Hamas Attacks Should Be Put In “Context”

February 26, 2024

After a brief hiatus from her obsessive coverage of the Hamas-Israel war, where Shree Paradkar, the “social and racial justice columnist” at the Toronto Star, wrote a non-Israel related column amidst a barrage of other anti-Israel hit pieces, she has returned to the same topic she has covered ad nauseam since October 7.

Paradkar’s February 23 opinion column entitled: “A Stephen Harper tweet was the latest reminder of the depth of Western bias on Israel-Palestine,” castigated former Prime Minister Stephen Harper for his recent visit to Israel, where he expressed solidarity with the country in its fight against Palestinian terrorism.

In particular, Paradkar took issue with Harper’s statement that Hamas’ October massacre was “unprovoked,” calling his comments “ahistorical and disingenuous.”

Paradkar began her column by condemning Hamas’ genocidal attacks, writing “We can all agree that the actions of the Hamas gunmen whose attacks in Israeli towns on Oct. 7, in which 1,200 people were killed and 240 hostages taken hostage, were awful.”

While Paradkar claims “all agree” that Hamas’ massacre was awful, that is a total misrepresentation of reality, when in fact, prominent anti-Israel activists have praised Hamas’ mass murders and even participated in parties celebrating the attacks.

Soon, however, Paradkar sought to provide “context” into the butchery, writing that Hamas named its October 7 mass killings the: “’Al Aqsa Floods’, saying it was meant to avenge Israel’s brutal attacks on Al Aqsa mosque in East Jerusalem — long a flashpoint site — during Ramadan in 2021.”

Paradkar did not explain how Hamas’ opposition to Israeli governmental policies somehow explains its decision to murder, torture, rape, behead and kidnap innocent Israeli civilians. Indeed, those inhuman actions do not make sense as a response, unless one acknowledges Hamas’ true ideology: radical Islam.

Paradkar, as she explained in her column, dismissed such explanations, writing that “reducing Hamas’s violent actions to an act of Islamic extremism — and setting up the violence as a religious struggle rather than a geo-political one with cross-group solidarity — makes Israeli actions an easier sell to a West that has long been primed to respond with Islamophobia.”

Despite Paradkar’s attempts to create an alternate reality where Hamas is not driven by its fanatical Islamist ideology, the facts speak for themselves.

Hamas’ founding charter, which spells out the terror group’s worldview, is replete with end-of-days Islamic imagery, and made no bones about its end goal: not just the violent destruction of Israel, but the replacement of Israel with an Islamic State-style caliphate.

But to Paradkar, telling the truth about Hamas apparently reeks of “Islamophobia.”

Paradkar pointed out that Hamas in Gaza “built a system of government that includes tens of thousands of teachers, civil servants and police,” unlike the Islamic State, who she sneers, “were a bunch of armed and violent men with delusions of grandeur.”

Paradkar is seemingly unaware that the Islamic State, like Hamas, also built an extensive system of government, including its own ministries, and even its own currency and passports for those living under its control.

Both Hamas and the Islamic State may lie to Western ears, telling them about grievances they hold against the world, but to their peers, they are explicitly Islamic regimes, with theocratic visions for the future. Hamas’ charter mentions the word ‘Islamic’ 136 times, and ‘Allah’ 92 times. Its ideology is no secret to anyone who is willing to pay attention.

The attempts by Paradkar to ignore these incontrovertible truths, and instead concoct her own reality, fall flat in the face of this overwhelming evidence.

By giving readers a deceptive picture of Hamas, Paradkar in effect provided them with a cloak of legitimacy, and rather than taking Hamas at their word, purported to tell the Palestinian terrorist group what they really mean.

For Paradkar, this column which said that Hamas attacks should be put into “context” and which whitewashed the terror group, marks a new low for the Star’s in-house critic of Israel.

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