While 33 ambassadors and dignitaries participated the recent celebration of the US embassy’s relocation from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, one country was noticeably absent from the list of attendees. Though considered by many to be one of Israel’s strongest allies, Canada chose to boycott the dedication.
“We will not be moving Canada’s embassy to Jerusalem,” said Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau in response to President Trump’s decision to move the U.S embassy from Tel Aviv to Israel’s capital city. Palestinian diplomats welcomed the Trudeau government’s decision not to support the move.
In stark contrast, Trudeau’s Conservative predecessor Stephen Harper lauded Trump’s decision to move the U.S embassy to Jerusalem. The Canadian Conservative Party has pledged to recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital if they win the general election in 2019.
Trudeau’s snub came just days after announcing that he would offer an official apology for Canada’s turning away 907 German Jews fleeing for their lives on the MS St. Louis during the Holocaust. But despite these empty words, it is clear that Trudeau has yet to fully grasp the lesson behind the phrase, “Never again!”
Aside from Canada’s unprecedented rise in Holocaust denial under his leadership, Trudeau’s apology rings hollow after his official letter strongly supporting “Palestine Day,” which took place in Canada’s parliament building. Held to coincide with “Land Day” (an annual event calling for the annihilation of Israel), this year’s event featured anti-Israel activists calling for the destruction of the State of Israel.
In response to U.S funding cuts to UNRWA, the UN agency specially designated for the descendants of Palestinian refugees, Canada announced that it would donate up to $25 million to make up for this deficit. This is despite the UN agency’s documented history of inciting anti-Jewish violence, as well as using UNRWA schools to store rockets and weapons belonging to the Hamas terrorist group.
Hamas has continuously called for the destruction of Israel and the creation of a Palestinian Islamic state in its place. The terror group’s original charter uses Islamic texts and debunked anti-Jewish conspiracy theories to call for the wholesale genocide of Jews in Israel and throughout the world.
Under Trudeau’s leadership, Canada has become a more dangerous place for Jews. According to Statistics Canada, Jews are the most targeted religious group in the country.
Not content with merely using taxpayer dollars to finance the anti-Jewish bigotry of UNRWA and Hamas, the Trudeau government funds anti-Israel incitement in Canada. In 2015, the federal government paid CAD $35,000 to a so-called artist who glorifies Palestinian terrorist attacks against Israeli civilians through her exhibits. This individual has continuously justified terrorist attacks plotted by her brother, including the 1974 massacre of 22 Israeli schoolchildren and 4 adults.
But should this really come as a surprise to anyone, considering that Trudeau’s government has used the Canada Jobs Grant to fund an Islamic group with terror ties, as well as one with a history of anti-gay rhetoric?
Trudeau even went as far to condemn what he called Israel’s “excessive use of force” when defending itself against riots organized by the Hamas terror group in Gaza. Trudeau seemed to take issue with the fact that Tarek Loubani, a Palestinian-Canadian previously arrested in Egypt for his support of Islamic terrorism (including allegations of murder), was reportedly shot in the leg during the protest.
If Trudeau truly wants to make amends for Canada’s behavior during the Holocaust, he can start by according Israel the same respect shown to any other sovereign nation and recognize Jerusalem as its declared capital city. Until Trudeau stops the proliferation of anti-Jewish and anti-Israel extremism under his watch, he can hardly be considered a friend of the Jewish State.
Bradley Martin is a Senior Fellow with the news and public policy group Haym Salomon Center and Deputy Editor for the Canadian Institute for Jewish Research.