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While many more Israelis may be thinking of leaving the country, Manitoba has seen very few arrive here the past three years

By BERNIE BELLAN Elsewhere on this website you can read an article about how many Israelis are planning on leaving the country as a result of the radical shift in that country’s direction since the new government came into power (https://jewishpostandnews.ca/rss/alarmed-by-their-countrys-political-direction-more-israelis-are-seeking-to-move-abroad/). We wondered though whether that might lead to an upsurge in Israelis applying to come to Manitoba. If recent figures for the number of Israelis who have come here under the Provincial Nominee Program are any indication, then it seems that the number of Israelis who have been applying to come here has fallen drastically in the past three years.

In May 2022 we published an article about an increase in the number of applicants that Manitoba was going to be able to accept under the Provincial Nominee Program. The PNP is the program through which most immigrants coming to Manitoba arrive. At that time we predicted that the increase – from 6,275 to 6,367, would lead to an increase in the number of Israelis applying to move to Manitoba.
Recently the province announced that its allocation for 2023 under the PNP hds jumped almost 50% – to 9,500.
Yet, while the number of applicants who will be accepted under the PNP may be skyrocketing, it hasn’t translated into any marked increase in the number of Israelis who have applied to move here – either in 2022 or 2023.
We asked a spokesperson for Jon Reyes, Manitoba’s Minister of Advanced Education, Skills and Immigration, the following question: “How many applications under the PNP have you received from Israelis in the past year?”
The answer we received was: “In 2022, the Manitoba Provincial Nominee Program (MPNP) received 16 applications from Israeli citizens. In 2021, the MPNP received 7.”
The spokesperson for the minister also added this note: “I’m not sure if you were thinking those numbers would be larger, but it’s also possible that individuals/families arrive in a different province, and then move to Manitoba. In those instances, that wouldn’t be reflective in the province’s numbers.”

Graph showing the number of applicants Manitoba has been able to accept under the Provincial Nominee Program since 2015

We also emailed the Jewish Federation, asking this question: “I’m wondering whether there has been an increase in inquiries from people living in Israel wanting to know about moving to Winnipeg. The reason I ask is obvious: There are so many Israelis wanting to leave the country now because of what the government is doing, but from what I’ve been reading the vast majority are applying to move to Europe. Is there anything you can tell me about how many have inquired in the past year about moving to Manitoba?”
Here is the answer we got back: “We have not gotten any indication of people leaving Israel and coming to Winnipeg due to the political situation there, at least as of now.”
Between 2017-2019 there had been a steady stream of Israelis who were allowed to move here under the PNP. When COVID hit in 2020, however, the number dropped – for obvious reasons, and it dropped even further in 2021. It increased slightly in 2022 – but nowhere near the levels it had been from 2017-2019.
Following the article we published last May about the Provincial Nominee Program, we received an email from an immigration consultant here who has a great deal of experience assisting Israelis with the process of emigrating to Manitoba. That person suggested that, as a result of the tightening of requirements under the PNP, fewer individuals from Israel were applying to come to Manitoba. We also wrote: “That individual also suggested that many immigrants who have come here have left Winnipeg as a result of not being able to find work in their chosen fields.”
In June 2022 we reported that the Jewish Federation was optimistic that immigration by Jewish families would bounce back in 2022. A spokesperson for the Federation wrote: “We have 75 people ready and willing to come to Winnipeg and continue with the immigration process, and with pandemic restrictions loosening, we anticipate numbers to bounce back from 2021. There are currently 300 individuals in various stages of producing required documents necessary to continue with the process.”
From time to time we have been reporting in this paper about new families having arrived in Winnipeg from other countries, including Turkey and Mexico (and in this issue, from Brazil) – and we will be continuing to report on new arrivals in coming issues, but again, we’re left wondering: Why aren’t more people coming here from Israel?
In our November 9 issue last year we reported on information gleaned from the 2021 census about the number of individuals in Winnipeg who reported that their ethnic origin was Israeli. The figure in the 2021 census was 1,435; in 2016 the figure was only 405. (We also explained that figures from the 2016 census were suspect because that census did not report Jewish or Israeli as one of the choices for ethnic origin. Respondents would have had to write in those answers. In 2021, by way of contrast, respondents were offered a check list of over 100 different choices for ethnic origin – this time including both “Jewish” and “Israeli” as possible answers.)
In either event, there was certainly a marked increase in the number of respondents in 2021 who gave “Israeli” as their ethnic origin.
But, as we also noted in another article (in our November 23 issue) about results of the 2021 census, there were also some very surprising figures about the religious background of individuals who said their ethnic origin was Israeli: “Of the 1350 individuals who said their ethnic origin was ‘Israeli’, only 855 said their religion was Jewish. Of the remainder, 385 said they had no religion, while 105 said they were Christian.”

Graph showing the number of Israelis who have come her under the Provincial Nominee Program since 2017

While there have also been a number of arrivals of Jewish families to Winnipeg from countries other than Israel, it’s been Israel that’s been by far the largest source of immigration to this city for Jewish families over the past 20 years.
And, while Winnipeg’s Jewish population showed an apparent increase from 2011 to 2021, when you combine figures for both ethnic origin and religion, the increase was fairly negligible. As I noted in my November 23rd article, a careful analysis of data from the 2021 census showed that, at a maximum, the number of individuals in Winnipeg who might be considered Jewish – either by ethnic origin or religion, was 14, 270 – and the figure was probably much lower than that.
So, what does this all signify? The rate of immigration from Israel to Manitoba has slowed over the past three years – even though the number of applicants who would be allowed to come here under the Provincial Nominee Program has jumped dramatically this year.
But last May, when we spoke with Dalia Szpiro, GrowWinnipeg Director for the Federation, she told us then that there was a large backlog of prospective immigrants who delayed coming here for exploratory visits as a result of Covid. In the past little while many individuals have now been coming here on those exploratory visits, Dalia said at the time.
Evidently though, very few of those prospective immigrants are from Israel – at least if figures released by the Manitoba government showing how few applicants under the PNP in the past two years have been from Israel.
In some respects, what is going on in Israel right now is reminiscent of what was being expressed when Donald Trump was elected President in 2016. Many Americans said then that they would leave the US as a result. While some did come to Canada, it turned out that our immigration requirements were far more onerous than many Americans had thought.
Last May, when we wrote about the PNP, we noted that Manitoba was seeking immigrants in specific areas.
At the time we asked the spokesperson for Minister Reyes: “Are there particular classes of immigrants that Manitoba is wanting to recruit? e.g., computer programmers, nurses, etc. (also good hockey players)?”
The spokesperson responded:
“The MPNP is an economic program that aims to address labour market needs by nominating skilled workers and business investors who satisfy program criteria – and who are employable in their areas of professional experience – across all industry sectors.
“Based on the Manitoba government’s Labour Market Outlook 2021-2025 and recent Manitoba occupations gap analyses for the 2022-2026 period, the need for the following occupations is expected to be acute until 2026, given new and expanding businesses and organizations and replacement of retiring workers:
 ·         Retail salespersons
·         Transport truck drivers
·         Nurse aides, orderlies and patient service associates
·         Retail and wholesale trade managers
·         Registered nurses and registered psychiatric nurses
·         Food counter attendants, kitchen helpers and related support occu- pations; and
·         Elementary school and kindergarten teachers
 
Many of the immigrants from Israel under the PNP have indeed found work in those areas, especially truck drivers, but one wonders why there has been such a slowdown in applicants from Israel under the PNP?
The answer seems to lie in the tightened requirement that the province is not imposing under the Provincial Nominee Program. Anecdotally, we recall hearing stories from individuals who had come here in the past. In many of those instances, we were told, they came applying to be truck drivers. When asked whether they had experience driving a truck, invariably they would answer: “Yes.” But, we were told, that wasn’t true; no matter, they were accepted under the PNP – and did get jobs as truck drivers.
Apparently the ease with which many applicants were accepted under the PNP no longer applies. We hope to explore the issue of why there has been such a dramatic slowdown in applicants from Israel to Manitoba under the PNP in a future issue.

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“Anti-Zionist” Jews Disgrace Themselves

By HENRY SREBRNIK Is so-called “anti-Zionism” antisemitic? It was not always so. Prior to the Holocaust and the creation of a Jewish state, many Jews did consider Zionism – a return to the Land of Israel — unworkable, unnecessary, even wrong-headed. In the United States, prior to the Holocaust, Reform Jews in the American Council for Judaism were committed to the proposition that Jews are not a national but a religious group. Jewish socialists and others on the political left, including the influential Jewish Labour Bund, were opposed to what they thought was an ideological “bourgeois” error.

But these were internal debates in the Diaspora, and in any case most non-Jewish people had little say about them — if they even bothered to pay any attention to these internal arguments within Jewish circles. Nor, obviously, did those politically against the Zionist movement ally with pogromists who slaughtered Jews.

All of that is history, really part of a vanished Jewish world. Yes, there are remnants of that past, in sectors of the haredi world. The Satmar Hasidim are the most visible. They are theologically committed to a reading of Jewish history that considers that the recreation of a Jewish nation must await the Messiah. They are “anti-Zionists” in the legitimate sense of the word, but no one thinks they want to kill the Jews in Israel or elsewhere.

That’s a different matter than today’s Jewish anti-Zionists, who are largely uninformed about Judaism, Jewish history and culture. They are a fringe group, allied with states and ideologies that want to eliminate the existing Jewish state of Israel and perhaps even murder most of its Jewish population and expel the remainder. Today’s version has more to do with pre-war German Nazi eliminationism than with long-forgotten intra-Jewish disputes.

Assimilated into left-wing movements and doctrines, these Jews are in most cases little more than Jews through genealogy, “Jews in name only,” making political use of that on behalf of those wishing to destroy Israel. Their “anti-Zionism” is part of the larger antisemitic movements arrayed against us, and they serve, to use a well-known term, “useful idiots.” They make use of general slogans, identity politics and symbolic statements like wearing a keffiyeh, with minimal complexity and knowledge. 

They are producing vast amounts of simplistic one-sided literature and media. One example is the film “Israelism,” the story of two young American Jews “raised to defend the state of Israel at all costs” who “join the movement battling the old guard over Israel’s centrality in American Judaism, and demanding freedom for the Palestinian people.” Call them “Jewish shields” for the pro-Palestinian left that is glorifying the post-October 7 pogrom by Hamas and Islamic Jihad.

“Antisemitism in Canada and abroad is primarily presenting itself through the prism of anti-Zionism, which, in my opinion, is the most pervasive form of antisemitism, and the most perverse in a number of ways,” remarked Casey Babb, a senior fellow with the Macdonald-Laurier Institute and the Institute for National Security Studies. I guess our Jewish “anti-Zionists,” wilfully blinded by the company they keep,  refuse to see what’s in front of our eyes.

Fortunately, here in Canada, despite the noise they make, such anti-Zionist Jews are a tiny and marginalized group. Professor Robert Brym of the Department of Sociology at the University of Toronto and probably Canada’s most eminent Jewish academic, on May 30 released an addition to his lengthy “Jews and Israel Survey 2024” published in the spring 2024 issue of the journal Canadian Jewish Studies.

To his question “Do you believe Israel has the right to exist as a Jewish state?” 91 per cent of his Canadian Jewish respondents answered in the affirmative, six per cent said they don’t know, and only three percent said no.

We know the difference between legitimate criticism of Israel and antisemitism. The belief that the Jews, alone among the people of the world, do not have a right to self-determination, or that the Jewish people’s religious and historical connection to Israel is invalid, is inherently bigoted. When Jews are verbally or physically harassed or Jewish institutions and houses of worship are vandalized in response to actions of the State of Israel, it is antisemitism. 

Expressions of anti-Zionism include downplaying or negating the historic and spiritual Jewish connection to the land of Israel, and the insistence on holding Israel to unreasonable standards when viewing its response to threats in comparison to the actions of other members of the international community.

Now many of these Jewish anti-Zionists don’t necessarily agree with everything listed above. But by associating and collaborating with those who do, they are at the very least, to use an old-fashioned phrase, “fellow travellers” allied to these antisemitic movements. And they can be paraded before the media as Jews who have seen the evil that Israel causes. What better evidence?

Some of Canada’s most disruptive actions and blockades have been coordinated by groups with U.S. funding and organizational links. For example, the Tides Foundation, a San Francisco-based “social justice” non-profit has supported Jewish Voice for Peace (JVP) and IfNotNow, among others, in the United States. Both have been perennial organizers of anti-Israel rallies and blockades.

The Canadian affiliate of JVP, Independent Jewish Voices Canada, calls itself a “grassroots organization in Canada grounded in Jewish tradition that opposes all forms of racism & advocates for justice and peace for all in Palestine-Israel.” It calls Zionism “the political ideology that has provided the basis for Israel’s settler-colonial project and unfolding genocide in Palestine.” 

They are indeed “useful,” and antisemites know it. On May 27, for instance, a representative was on Parliament Hill holding a press conference insisting that the country’s network of pro-intifada campus encampments was not antisemitic.

On June 10 the Public Service Alliance of Canada (PSAC), one of Canada’s largest public sector unions, which is actively engaged in Pro-Palestinian activities, held a discussion “Addressing Islamophobia and antisemitism in the Workplace.” Of course no Jew supporting Israel was invited, not even Deborah Lyons, Canada’s Special Envoy on Holocaust Remembrance and Combating Antisemitism, and a former ambassador to Israel. 

The panelists were Amira Elghawaby, Canada’s Special Representative on Combatting Islamophobia, and, on the Jewish side, Avi Lewis, a former Al Jazeera correspondent and now an associate professor of “social and political change” at the University of British Columbia (UBC). 

However, Lewis, scion of a prominent family that has been for decades active in the New Democratic Party – grandfather David led the federal NDP and father Stephen was head of the Ontario party — is an active “anti-Zionist,” a member of the anti-Zionist Independent Jewish Voices Canada, and a co-founder of the UBC chapter of the Jewish Faculty Network.

Richard Marceau, vice president of the Centre for Israel and Jewish Affairs, said the union’s efforts at doing something about antisemitism were disappointing.

“Inviting someone like Avi Lewis — who is not an expert on antisemitism, who is a marginal figure in the Jewish community and who is viciously opposed to Israel — to train union members on antisemitism shows how unserious PSAC is about combatting Jew-hatred,” he stated.

Yes, Jews can be Jew-haters too. (The term “self-hating Jew” is silly; they hate other Jews, not themselves.) Such Jews now face anti-Israel sentiment of unprecedented ferocity, often couched in the language of social justice, critical race theory, and so-called intersectionality. It is sustained by the hegemonic hold of a theory of “settler colonialism,” now ubiquitous in Canada’s universities, and one which deems Israel an illegitimate colonial settler state. 

And Palestinian academics known how to use this terminology to make their case. Typical is an article by Joseph Massad, a professor of modern Arab politics and intellectual history at Columbia University, New York. In a May 30 oped, “Instead of Recognizing ‘Palestine,’ Countries Should Withdraw Recognition of Israel,” published on the website Middle East Eye, he uses all the correct buzzwords, referring to “Israel’s illegality as an institutionally Jewish supremacist racist state.” He considers the very establishment of this “settler-colonialist” state “an illegal act and in violation of the very UN resolutions that proposed its establishment.” 

Massad therefore advocates the “dismantlement of Israel’s racist structures and laws” in favour of “one decolonised state, from the river to the sea, in which everyone living within it is equal before the law and does not benefit from any racial, ethnic, or religious privileges.” Only the end of the Israeli “settler-colonial state” will lead to a “decolonised anti-racist and democratic outcome.”

Massad’s analysis and prescription is the true bedrock Palestinian position, as presented for western ears. (Hamas’ creed is a different matter.) The theoretical construct behind it is one that fits completely within today’s liberal-progressive ideology espoused by the intellectual elites in western countries now. The “anti-Zionist” Jews reading them usually know far less about what the Jewish people have gone through historically. This makes them easy prey for our enemies. 

Natan Sharansky, currently Chair of the Institute for the Study of Global Antisemitism and Policy (ISGAP), and McGill University history professor Gil Troy, in a June 16, 2021 Tablet article entitled “The Un-Jews,” asserted that these people “are trying to disentangle Judaism from Jewish nationalism, the sense of Jewish peoplehood.” And the voices of these “inflamed Jewish opponents of Israel and Zionism are in turn amplified by a militant progressive superstructure that now has an ideological lock on the discourse in American academia, publishing, media, and the professions.”

We hear it from progressives like the author Naomi Klein, who is professor of Climate Justice at the University of British Columbia (and married to Avi Lewis). Klein’s Passover message in the April 24 British Guardian newspaper was headlined “We Need an Exodus from Zionism.”  She told readers that “we don’t need or want the false idol of Zionism. We want freedom from the project that commits genocide in our name.”

For Klein, Zionism “takes our most profound biblical stories of justice and emancipation from slavery– the story of Passover itself — and turns them into brutalist weapons of colonial land theft, roadmaps for ethnic cleansing and genocide.”  The creation of the State of Israel, and the entire Zionist movement, was a ghastly mistake and Jewish life is best led in exile. 

“Arguing for the purity of exile and powerlessness, and demanding abandonment of the now-impure Jewish State,” Elliott Abrams, currently a senior fellow for Middle Eastern studies at the Council on Foreign Relations in Washington, observes sadly that “we have indeed been watching the young American Jews who helped build those campus tent cities and joined the denunciations of the Jewish State.” 

In “American Jewish Anti-Zionist Diasporism: A Critique,” in the May 2024 issue of the British periodical Fathom, he sees them following the lead of “the hundreds of Jewish professors who wish to proclaim their virtue by lining up against the Jewish State.”

Finally, there are the many Jews like Rabbi Elchanan Poupko, the president of EITAN–the American Israeli Jewish Network, whose anger at anti-Zionists is palpable. In “Anti-Zionist Jews, Have You Seen the Mirror?” a blog published on the Times of Israel website, May 28, 2024, he points out their hypocrisy. 

“The people who were angry at Birthright for taking them on a free, all-expenses paid trip to Israel without taking them to Gaza, Ramallah, and Sheikh Jarrah were somehow unable to utter the words Kibbutz Be’eri, Sderot, Metula, Kiryat Shmona, or the massacre at Nova music festival. Those who were angry at their teachers for celebrating Yom Ha’atzmaut with no mention of the Nakba were suddenly unable to speak about the Hamas charter calling for the killing of Jews worldwide.

“Yet perhaps worst of all, was not what anti-Zionist Jews said — or did not say — but rather the company anti-Zionist Jews have chosen to keep. Over the past few months, anti-Zionist Jews have stood shoulder to shoulder with masked and uniformed individuals in public places, physically blocking off ‘Zionists.’”

 They exclude their fellow Jews from public spaces in universities, side with terrorist organizations that call for the annihilation of all Jews in the world and make partnerships “with what is objectively the most antisemitic movement since the Holocaust,” he writes.

Rabbi Poupko lives in New Haven, Connecticut. The region is home to Yale University, Quinnipiac University, Albertus Magnus College, the University of New Haven, and Southern Connecticut State University, making it a hub of higher education – and, of course, pro-Palestinian protests. “I got to see firsthand what anti-Zionism in Jewish spaces meant. A group of anti-Zionist Jews shared to their social media videos with cheers like ‘there is only one solution – intifada revolution,’ which is a call for deadly violence.”

As Iran began shooting ballistic missiles and drones carrying hundreds of tons of explosives at Israel’s civilian population, “many anti-Zionist Jews were there to explain why Iran was justified in its attacks on Israel. Jewish Voices for Peace posted a photo of Houthis in Yemen praising the pro-terror mobs on campus.”

He concludes by noting the irony of anti-Zionist Jews siding with the mobs behind the greatest push for Diasporic Jews to move to Israel. “Those who want you to believe Jewish safety should not depend on the State of Israel have helped make much of the diaspora unsafe for Jews and Jewish life.” When the people you march with “are the reason countless synagogues, JCCs, and day schools are hiring more security, you probably don’t get credit for making Jewish life in the Diaspora more appealing.”

Such Jews are betting their present and future will be outside the confines of the Jewish people, and they will do anything to gain the acceptance of the antisemitic circles in which they traffic. “When anti-Zionist Jews hold signs that say: ‘this Jew is against genocide,’ besides for defaming other Jews as being for genocide, they also often forget the truly genocidal company they keep, company that would like to eradicate the State of Israel. It is time for anti-Zionist Jews to take a look in the mirror.”

Bottom line: Whatever we call it, and however they can be distinguished, both terms, antisemitism and anti-Zionism, are in today’s context simply manifestations of Jew- hatred.

Henry Srebrnik is a professor of political science at the University of Prince Edward Island in Charlottetown. 

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Jewish immigrant entrepreneurs pack Rady JCC gym for community’s first business expo (with 29 photos of exhibitors)

l-r: Alina (left) & Orit - A & O Event Decor; Hofit Yanev - Realtor; Yonatan Orlov - Kids Planet Entertainment

By BERNIE BELLAN Seven years ago, along with Tamar Barr and Gayle Waxman of the Rady JCC, I helped to start something called the Jewish Business Network. For the first few years it met with great success, as business people – both from the established Jewish community, and recent immigrants to our city, would meet together, shmooze, and hear from speakers. Covid put a damper on to that venture and even though the Rady JCC did attempt to revive it a couple of years ago I’m not even sure whether there still is a “Jewish Business Network.”
But, never did we hold anything like what the Jewish Federation and Jewish Child and Family Service combined to sponsor on June 18, which was an event called “Celebrating Ventures.
With 73 exhibitors slated to participate (although some did not show up), it was an opportunity for immigrants to our Jewish community to show others what they have achieved since coming here.
In his message in the program guide, JCFS Executive Director Al Benarroch noted that “Each business here today represents resilience, innovation, and the spirit of entrepreneurship that enriches our society. The diversity of talents and the stories of perseverance are inspiring to us all.”
What follows are photos of some of the exhibitors, along with their names and names of their businesses. I apologize that I wasn’t able to include photos of every single exhibitor but the photos here give an idea how eclectic the event was.

Adriana Josebachvili – Milly Blankets & Knits
Ross & Unona Godinov – N.G.E. Next Generation of Electricity
Viviana & Patricia – Unika Cosmetics
Tanya Zueva – Vanguard Real Estate
Stefan Yanev – Excellence Fences & Decks
(with daughter Sapir & wife Hofit)
Shuly Gorelik – In Balance Reflexology
Ross & Unona Godinov –
N.G.E. Next Generation of Electricity
Pnina Rozin – Reflexology
Nik Rave – Rave Photography
Melanie & Yamila Zimerman – Mind Recovery Therapy
Marcelo – Re-New Mobility
Leo & Yana Ustinski – Nesterra Massage Therapy
(with their daughter Leeness)
Kristina & Tova – Dream Big Balloons
Irena Gordon – NCA Gordon (Neurographica)
Ilan Libshitz – Royal Nursing Home Care
Hannah Veltman – Life Coach
Emma – Massage (with her daughter)
DJ ROSS
Dina Raihman – Integral School

Dina Grinon – The Cakeri
David Il – VL Applicance
Boris Sapozhnikov – YRMA Mortgages
Becky Chisick (left) & Betina Bacari – The Jewish Post
Anton Cherno – Cherno Industrial
Anna Shapiro – Speech & Language Consultation
Angela Poleschuk – Life Coach & Reiki Practitioner
Alina (left) & Orit – A & O Event Decor
Alex Shogolev – Alpha Swim Club
l-r: Rina, Max & Yonatan Orlov, Tom Denysenko – Rolling Spirits Mobile Bar
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University of Toronto doctors will stop acknowledging their affiliation with the medical school over its ‘failure’ to protect Jewish students and faculty

Temerty Faculty of Medicine, University of Toronto

By ALEX ROSE (CJN) Over 100 Jewish doctors who are faculty members at the University of Toronto’s Temerty Faculty of Medicine (TFOM) will stop acknowledging their affiliation with the school in response to what they see as a failure to protect Jewish students and faculty. 

The doctors will continue to perform all of their regular roles and responsibilities. However, in instances when they would have noted their relationship to UofT, they will now decline to do so. That includes publications, presentations and professional correspondence. 

“We are not refusing to do any of our academic activities. This is really a symbolic gesture that we’re doing,” said Dr. Jerry Teitel a hematologist who works at St. Michael’s Hospital and as a professor of medicine at UofT.

“So if I give a talk to a group of trainees… as I’ll be doing in a couple of weeks, on my title slide, instead of putting as my affiliations, ‘St. Michael’s Hospital, University of Toronto,’ I’ll leave out the University of Toronto.” 

The decision, which was announced by Doctors Against Racism and Antisemitism (DARA) on June 6, comes amidst a campus climate that discriminates against Jews, as the doctors see it. In fact, most of the doctors who have decided to refrain from acknowledging their relationship with the school are declining to make their names public, for fear of reprisal. 

Teitel is near the end of his career so doesn’t fear the repercussions in the same way, but he understands why his colleagues choose to remain anonymous, especially given the recent experiences of Jewish faculty and students. 

“If you are a junior faculty or if you’re a student, I think you’re going to be more in the line of fire… We realized, you know, if we ask people to sign the letter and put their name out there, they’re at risk of being doxxed on social media, it’s going to come back and hurt them,” he said. “That we wanted people to express themselves, but anonymously, shows you how the degree of intimidation has affected us.”

Doxxing is the act of publishing an individual’s personal details on the internet so that people can target them outside of just online spaces.

“If I were early career, if I were a student, I would say, if I were active on social media, I wouldn’t want to live in an environment where I knew that I was going to be a personal target of hatred,” Teitel said.

In DARA’s press release announcing the action, they gave many examples of the kind of behaviour that they say is indicative of the school and medical faculty’s “failure” to defend Jewish learners and professors. 

The examples include certain TFOM faculty speaking at rallies calling for an intifada and posting vile messages on social media, and issues at or near the pro-Palestinian encampment on the school’s King’s College Circle such as physical confrontations and calls for Jews to return to Europe. Jewish medical students were even offered the option to have their classes moved online in an acknowledgement of unsafe conditions. 

“As long as UofT fails to act, the UofT affiliation under the signature of the Jewish physician faculty tarnishes these faculty members’ reputation,” the DARA press release reads. “This protest against UofT’s failure to protect Jews on campus will continue until UofT institutes bona fide measures to provide a welcoming and safe environment for Jews.” 

A spokesperson for the TFOM sent a statement to The CJN in response to the DARA announcement. 

“We are saddened that in this time of global and local crisis, many of our faculty at Temerty Medicine are experiencing pain and distress as a result of antisemitism on campus and beyond,” read the statement. “We remain committed to combatting antisemitism through education and will continue to address all incidents of antisemitism and other forms of discrimination that are brought to our attention, within the context of our institutional policies and processes, and the law. 

“We acknowledge and accept that faculty members may choose to express their criticism of the University and its actions in different ways, under the university’s Statement of Institutional Purpose and Statement on Freedom of Speech. This includes the right by faculty members to choose whether to continue their affiliation with UofT. President Meric Gertler has explained the University’s commitment to free speech.” 

Dr. Ted Rosenberg, a Vancouver-based geriatrician who resigned from his faculty position at the University of British Columbia (UBC) earlier this year, understands why the UofT doctors are taking this step. The situation is not unique to just his former school or UofT, either. Rosenberg says it is being experienced by every Jewish doctor who sympathizes with Israel, a number he put at approximately 80 percent according to polling. 

“This has been happening at every single university across Canada and every single medical school. I’m in touch with doctors across the country and they’re all saying the same thing. ‘We have been marginalized. We’ve been delegitimized. We are exposed to this demonizing hatred and we’re exposed to this double standard. We do not feel part of the Canadian tapestry and we do not feel part of our universities anywhere,’” Rosenberg said. 

“UofT now is starting to stand up after, like us in UBC, trying to work with administration and being rebuffed and marginalized. They’re saying enough is enough.” 

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