Connect with us
Seder Passover
Israel Bonds RRSP
JNF Canada


On the streets of Tel Aviv, protesters on cusp of a big victory vow to keep fighting

TEL AVIV (JTA) — Yaniv, a resident of Tel Aviv, has lost count of how many protests he’s been to during the past three months. But on Monday afternoon, he headed once again to Kaplan Street, the urban artery that has become ground zero of the anti-government demonstrations, to demonstrate once again.

Israel’s current rupture, said Yaniv, 34, is the “biggest crisis in my lifetime.”

“We’ll keep going until something changes,” he said. “They left us no choice. The damage has been done.”

Week after week, Yaniv and tens of thousands of other Israelis have filled the streets of Tel Aviv to protest Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s proposed overhaul of the country’s judiciary — which would sap the Supreme Court of much of its power and influence. Then, on Sunday night, massive protests again took shape to oppose Netanyahu’s firing of his defense minister, who called for a pause on the legislation.

Now, the following day, the protesters came with a different feeling: that their activism might actually succeed, at least in the short term. After people gathered in Tel Aviv, Jerusalem and elsewhere, Netanyahu announced that he would pause the legislation to allow time for dialogue. Several of his ministers had already called for him to do just that.

Justin Jacobs, a recent immigrant to Israel from the United States, said he is hopeful about the outcome of the protest movement. (Deborah Danan)

But even as the campaign to stall the legislation was poised to achieve an at least temporary victory, protesters were not in a celebratory mood. They vowed to continue demonstrating against what some described as Netanyahu’s broader authoritarian impulses.

“You see how the liberal voice that has been missing for so long is returning to the street and has become the mainstream,” said Ben Luria, a resident of Jaffa protesting in Tel Aviv. “It looks like they’ve succeeded in passing the message across.”

But for Luria, that success doesn’t translate into any desire to ease the pressure. “You can’t deny that this is no longer just a question of Bibi being Bibi, this is a dictator in the making,” he added, using Netanyahu’s nickname. “We need to put the line somewhere.”

Even as Israelis were glued to their TV screens, waiting to hear Netanyahu announce a suspension of the legislation, Daria, who immigrated to Israel with her family from what is now Russia, did not pin her hopes on Netanyahu changing course.

“I don’t think that even if they stop this legislation, they will stop anything else,” said Daria, who came to the protest with Yaniv and, like him, declined to give her last name. “Even if they say they’ll postpone until Pesach or for forever, that doesn’t mean that we stop protesting what this government is doing.”

Sunday night’s protests were followed by a countrywide general strike. Blocked streets and canceled bus routes in downtown Tel Aviv meant that a 20-minute journey to a high-risk pregnancy clinic on Monday instead took an hour and a half for Natalie Solomon, who is eight-and-a-half months pregnant. She said she hoped Netanyahu would concede and spare Israelis further disruption.

“Our country is falling apart,” she said, expressing her hope that an end to the political standoff is near. “I really hope Bibi backs down today, that’s the only option. … We care about democracy but we really just care about the health of our baby.
At the end of the day it really does disrupt day-to-day lives.”

Despite being on the cusp of their first major victory, protesters said the potential respite offered by Netanyahu would be a minor gesture, not one that could overcome the hard feelings that have built up over the past three months.

Justin Jacobs, an immigrant to Israel from Lancaster, Pennsylvania, said Israel has “turned a corner” after Sunday night’s protests.”So, [there’s] a glimmer of hope that we’ll go back to the status quo, which to me remains not good enough,” he said. “But not good enough is still better than horrifying.”

Others were less optimistic. “My feeling, the feeling of my parents, my grandparents, [is] that there’s no future here, I don’t know if I’ll raise kids here,” said Yotam Weingrad.

Like Weingrad, Daria, recalling her family’s experience, is also considering her future in the Jewish state.

Yariv and Daria, left, walk in Tel Aviv after participating in anti-government protests on Monday, March 27, 2023; at right, Natalie Solomon said her trip to a high-risk pregnancy clinic took more than four times longer than normal because of the protests. (Deborah Danan)

“I grew up in a family with intimate knowledge of what it feels like to live under oppression, and I feel like it’s our duty to do whatever we can to prevent it,” she said. “But if push comes to shove, if nothing’s going to change, I’ll make the same decision my parents did — my kids aren’t going to live in a dictatorship.”

For those not emotionally invested in the Israeli crisis, the streets of Tel Aviv on Monday provided a rare experience, and a sense of uncertainty. Jennifer, a tourist from Utah visiting Israel with her two daughters, Holly and Diana, wanted to know if “it is going to get scary” and wondered if they’d be able to get back to the United States, as airports had closed due to the general strike.

“We’ve never been to this part of the world so we’re kind of like ‘Wow,’ just taking in everything,” said Diana. “We don’t know what it’s like without the protests, and we’re like, ‘This is Tel Aviv. It’s a lot.’”

Support for the protests isn’t unanimous across Tel Aviv, a bastion of left-wing politics in Israel. Josh Eidelshtein called the protests “hypocritical,” and blamed them for fanning the flames of conflict.

“What if the protesters were right-wingers, Orthodox Jews, or Palestinians?” he said. “Would their strategies still be OK? There is too much hate being bred here, and it’s as if the collective stress and anxiety this country has lived on for so long has been set aflame. The same people who went out to vote [for the left] are now trying to work against the system because they didn’t get what they wanted.”

Khalil, who originally hails from the Arab village of Ein Hawd in Israel’s north, and has lived in Tel Aviv for 50 years, also opted to stay away from the protests, which he felt did not speak for him.

“The Arabs are a minority, what do they have to do with these protests?” Khalil said as he walked his dog near a giant yellow sign reading “Nonstop Democracy,” painted by the Tel Aviv municipality on the boardwalk.

“Bibi has done good things but now he’s silent. This is a man who knows how to speak,” Khalil said. Then, referring to Netanyahu’s coalition partners, he added, “He’s not the king of Israel anymore. He made big mistakes by taking those criminals into the government with him. They want to throw out all the Arabs.”

Also sitting out the protests was Meir Dayan, who counts himself among the supporters of Netanyahu’s proposed judicial reform. He is especially in favor of the legislation that was due to be brought for a final vote on Monday, which would have increased the governing coalition’s control over Supreme Court appointments. But Dayan added that he didn’t appreciate the way Netanyahu attempted to pass the measures into law.

The path along the beach in Tel Aviv has been painted with pro-democracy messages. (Deborah Danan)

“The way they went about it was reckless,” he said. “Change to heavy organizational processes — because this is what this basically is, after all — doesn’t happen with legislation, it happens with people. It must be bottom-up and from a place of education, not ignorance.”

Dayan predicted that Netanyahu will halt the legislation now, and then in the summer months “when the left are overseas,” he will return it to the Knesset floor.

Roughly four miles away from the main protest, a smaller demonstration coalesced near Jaffa’s clocktower, a landmark at the entrance to Tel Aviv’s older counterpart. At this protest, children as young as 5 chanted “Shame!” and “Save Democracy!” while their parents stood to the side.

“Here the adults are quiet so the children are taking the lead. It’s exciting,” said Gavri, 10.

There are a few things he’d like to bring about in Israeli society: the failure of the judicial overhaul, as well as an end to fighting between Jews and Arabs. Like the adults protesting across the city, he vowed not to give up.

“I will be here until the end,” he said. “I hope it won’t be a long time.”

The post On the streets of Tel Aviv, protesters on cusp of a big victory vow to keep fighting appeared first on Jewish Telegraphic Agency.

Continue Reading
Click to comment

You must be logged in to post a comment Login

Leave a Reply


Canada’s economic growth projected to be about 1% in the first half of 2024

Canada is a country with a thriving Jewish community and has traditionally offered the security of a strong economy for residents. The national economic outlook is naturally something that everyone in Canada’s Jewish community keeps track of – especially those involved in business in the various provinces.

With this in mind, the July 2023 Monetary Policy Report from the Bank of Canada made for interesting reading, projecting a moderate economic growth figure of around 1% for the first half of 2024. This is in line with growth figures that had been forecast for the second half of 2023, and sees the country’s economy remain on a stable footing.

Steady projected growth for first half of 2024

Although projected economic growth of around 1% in early 2024 is not as impressive as figures of around 3.4% in 2022 and 1.8% in 2023, it is certainly no cause for alarm. But what might be behind it?

Higher interest rates are one major factor to consider and have had a negative impact on household spending nationally. This has effectively seen people with less spending power and businesses in Canada generating less revenue as a result.

Interest rate rises have also hit business investments nationally, and less money is being channelled into this area to fuel Canada’s economic growth. When you also factor in how the weak foreign demand for Canadian goods and services has hit export growth lately, the projected GDP growth figure for early 2024 is understandable.

Growth in second half of 2024 expected

Although the above may make for interesting reading for early 2024, the Bank of Canada’s report does show that economic growth is expected to pick up in the second half of the year. This is projected to be due to the decreasing effect of high interest rates on the Canadian economy and a stronger foreign demand for the country’s exports.

Moving forward from this period, it is predicted that inflation will remain at around 3% as we head into 2025, and hit the Bank of Canada’s inflation target of 2% come the middle of 2025. All of this should help the country’s financial status remain stable and prove encouraging for business leaders in the Jewish community.

Canada’s economic growth mirrors iGaming’s rise

When you take a look at the previous growth figures Canada has seen and also consider the growth predicted for 2024 (especially in the second half of the year), it is clear that the country has a vibrant, thriving economy.

This economic growth is something that can be compared with iGaming’s recent rise as an industry around the country. In the same way as Canada has steadily built a strong economy over time, iGaming has transformed itself into a powerful, flourishing sector.

This becomes even clearer when you consider that Canadian iGaming has been a major contributor to the sustained growth seen in the country’s arts, entertainment and recreation industry, which rose by around 1.9% in Q2 of 2023. The healthy state of online casino play in Canada is also evidenced by how many customers the most popular casino platforms attract and how the user experience these operators offer has enabled iGaming in the country to take off.

This, of course, is also something that translates to the world stage, where global iGaming revenues in 2023 hit an estimated $95 billion. iGaming’s global market volume is also pegged to rise to around $130 billion by 2027. These kinds of figures represent a sharp jump for iGaming worldwide and show how the sector is on the ascent.

Future economic outlook for Canada in line with global expectations

When considering the Canadian economic outlook for 2024, it is often useful to look at how this compares with global financial predictions. In addition to the rude health of iGaming in Canada being reflected in global online casino gaming, the positive economic outlook for the country is also broadly in line with expectations for many global economies.

Global growth is also predicted to rise steadily in the second half of 2024 before becoming stronger in 2025. This should be driven by the weakening effects of high interest rates on worldwide economic prosperity. With rate cuts in Canada already expected after Feb 2024’s inflation report, this could happen in the near future.

The performance of the US economy is always of interest in Canada, as this is the country’s biggest trading partner. Positive US Q2 performances in 2023, powered by a strong labor market, good consumer spending levels and robust business investments, were therefore a cause for optimism. As a US economy that continues to grow is something that Canadian businesses welcome, this can only be a healthy sign.

Canada set for further growth in 2024

Local news around Canada can cover many topics but the economy is arguably one of the most popular. A projected GDP growth figure of around 1% for Canada’s economy shows that the financial state of the country is heading in the right direction. An improved financial outlook heading into the latter half of 2024/2025 would make for even better reading, and the national economy should become even stronger.

Continue Reading


The Legal Landscape of Online Gambling in Canada

Online gambling has grown in popularity around the globe in recent years. While many jurisdictions have legalized land-based gambling, it hasn’t applied to online platforms. Nonetheless, Canada is one nation that has legalized online gambling with their provinces’ licensing and regulating sites.

Nonetheless, Canadians of legal age can enjoy playing their favourite online games where available. So many games like slots, blackjack, and roulette still maintain their popularity even in the digital sense.  Want to learn about what’s legal in Canada for online gambling? Let’s take a look.

What is legal for online gambling in Canada?

What is the best online casino in Canada? The list we provide you here should be a good start. It’s also important to note that most Canadian provinces do not have laws that prohibit offshore online casinos.

Many provinces provide licensing to online casinos. They even regulate them as well. For example, Alberta and British Columbia have sites regulated by their respective governing bodies. The Atlantic Lottery Corporation (ALC) allows legal online gambling and oversees the services it offers to Maritime provinces such as New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island, and Newfoundland and Labrador.

However, there are some caveats to address. In Newfoundland and Labrador, online gambling that is not offered by the ALC is considered illegal. Therefore, it is the only Canadian province as of 2024 that prohibits offshore options.

In terms of the legal age, there are three provinces where the legal age is 18: Alberta, Manitoba, and Quebec. The remaining provinces establish 19 as the legal age for gambling including online.

Who are the regulatory bodies for gambling in Canada?

At the Federal level, the Canadian Gaming Association is the regulatory body for gambling in Canada. Thus, they cover both land-based and online gambling in the country. There are also provincial and regional regulatory bodies such as the Atlantic Lottery Corporation (ALC) – which covers the provinces of New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island, Newfoundland and Labrador.  

The Western Canada Lottery Corporation covers Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba, Nunavut, Northwest Territories, and the Yukon Territory. A handful of provinces also have their regulatory bodies covering lottery and gaming.

Canada requires online casinos that wish to accept players from the country to adhere to regulations and licensing. These licenses are provided by provincial regulatory bodies. When licensed, online casinos must follow the regulations and security standards.

However, there is the belief that many of the laws about gambling in Canada may be outdated. This could be because these laws were created long before the advent of the Internet. Therefore, such laws may need to be modernized. Nonetheless, online gambling for the most part is legal, just dependent on the province.

Are there any legal grey areas to discuss?

The grey area that is considered a concern pertains to the use of offshore sites. As mentioned earlier, Newfoundland and Labrador is believed to be the only province that prohibits it. Even online casinos with no licensing by Canadian or provincial authorities accept residents of the country.

On the players’ end, many Canadians are allowed to play at online casinos. However, they may be restricted from certain platforms. This is to ensure that the players themselves are protected from unknowingly playing on platforms that may be illegal. 

What are the other laws and regulations about online gambling in Canada?

Online casinos have implemented measures for responsible gambling. This includes providing support and resources to problem gamblers on their site. They are also restricted regarding the marketing and advertising aspects of promoting their platform. 

One restriction of note is that marketing that is targeted at minors is prohibited. Another prohibits professional athletes from appearing in online casino ads in Ontario.

Even offshore casinos must adhere to these laws and regulations. Especially if they have obtained a license from the provincial bodies that allow them to operate.

Canada’s online gambling is legal – but will things change

As it stands right now, the legality of online gambling in Canada seems to fall under the purview of provincial laws and regulations. Canadian citizens must perform their due diligence further to see which online casinos are allowed by their respective provinces. Just because it may be legal in one province, it may not be the same in others.

Nonetheless, the question is: will any laws relax certain restrictions? Will Newfoundland and Labrador change their tune regarding offshore casinos? It’s unclear what the future holds – but watch this space for any changes about online gambling in Canada.  

Continue Reading



Wiseman, Nathan Elliot
1944 – 2023
Nathan, our beloved husband, Dad, and Zaida, died unexpectedly on December 13, 2023. Nathan was born on December 16, 1944, in Winnipeg, MB, the eldest of Sam and Cissie Wiseman’s three children.
He is survived by his loving wife Eva; children Sam (Natalie) and Marni (Shane); grandchildren Jacob, Jonah, Molly, Isabel, Nicole, and Poppy; brother David (Sherrill); sister Barbara (Ron); sister-in-law Agi (Sam) and many cousins, nieces, and nephews.
Nathan grew up in the north end of Winnipeg surrounded by his loving family. He received his MD from the University of Manitoba in 1968, subsequently completed his General Surgery residency at the University of Manitoba and went on to complete a fellowship in Paediatric Surgery at Boston Children’s Hospital of Harvard University. His surgeon teachers and mentors were world renowned experts in the specialty, and even included a Nobel prize winner.
His practice of Paediatric Surgery at Children’s Hospital of Winnipeg spanned almost half a century. He loved his profession and helping patients, even decades later often recounting details about the many kiddies on whom he had operated. Patients and their family members would commonly approach him on the street and say, “Remember me Dr. Wiseman?”. And he did! His true joy was caring for his patients with compassion, patience, unwavering commitment, and excellence. He was a gifted surgeon and leaves a profound legacy. He had no intention of ever fully retiring and operated until his very last day. He felt privileged to have the opportunity to mentor, support and work with colleagues, trainees, nurses, and others health care workers that enriched his day-to-day life and brought him much happiness and fulfillment. He was recognized with many awards and honors throughout his career including serving as Chief of Surgery of Children’s Hospital of Winnipeg, President of the Canadian Association of Pediatric Surgeons, and as a Governor of the American College of Surgeons. Most importantly of all he helped and saved the lives of thousands and thousands of Manitoba children. His impact on the generations of children he cared for, and their families, is truly immeasurable.
Nathan’s passion for golf was ignited during his childhood summers spent at the Winnipeg Beach Golf Course. Southwood Golf and Country Club has been his second home since 1980. His game was excellent and even in his last year he shot under his age twice! He played an honest “play as it lies” game. His golf buddies were true friends and provided him much happiness both on and off the course for over forty years. However, his passion for golf extended well beyond the eighteenth hole. He immersed himself in all aspects of the golf including collecting golf books, antiques, and memorabilia. He was a true scholar of the game, reading golf literature, writing golf poetry, and even rebuilding and repairing antique golf clubs. Unquestionably, his knowledge and passion for the game was limitless.
Nathan approached his many woodworking and workshop projects with zeal and creativity, and he always had many on the go. During the winter he was an avid curler, and in recent years he also enjoyed the study of Yiddish. Nathan never wasted any time and lived his life to the fullest.
Above all, Nathan was a loving husband, father, grandfather, son, father-in-law, son-in-law, uncle, brother, brother-in-law, cousin, and granduncle. He loved his family and lived for them, and this love was reciprocated. He met his wife Eva when he was a 20-year-old medical student, and she was 18 years old. They were happily married for 56 years. They loved each other deeply and limitlessly and were proud of each other’s accomplishments. He loved the life and the family they created together. Nathan was truly the family patriarch, an inspiration and a mentor to his children, grandchildren, nephews, nieces, and many others. He shared his passion for surgery and collecting with his son and was very proud to join his daughter’s medical practice (he loved Thursdays). His six grandchildren were his pride and joy and the centre of his world.
Throughout his life Nathan lived up to the credo “May his memory be a blessing.” His life was a blessing for the countless newborns, infants, toddlers, children, and teenagers who he cared for, for his colleagues, for his friends and especially for his family. We love him so much and there are no words to describe how much he will be missed.
A graveside funeral was held at the Shaarey Zedek cemetery on December 15, 2023. Pallbearers were his loving grandchildren. The family would like to extend their gratitude to Rabbi Yosef Benarroch of Adas Yeshurun Herzlia Congregation.
In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Children’s Hospital Foundation of Manitoba, in the name of Dr. Nathan Wiseman.

Continue Reading

Copyright © 2017 - 2023 Jewish Post & News