Last summer, we had some coverage of the Boycott, Divestment & Sanctions movement in connection with an ill-advised partnership the University of Regina’s Faculty of Business Administration was contemplating with the Policing and Homeland Security Studies department of Hebrew University’s Faculty of Law to provide an MBA in Public Safety to Regina students.
Patterned after efforts in the 1980s to put economic, political and socio-cultural pressure on South Africa to end apartheid, the BDS movement is non-violent and seeks through moral suasion to pressure Israel to halt the ongoing expansion of illegal settlements in the occupied West Bank and to enter into constructive negotiations with the Palestinian people to find a way out of the current quagmire in the region. Supporters of BDS in Canada include the United Church of Canada, Canadian Quakers, labour unions, student groups and more.
More recently, we’ve written on Bill C-51, a piece of federal legislation passed last week by the Harper government that would greatly expand the investigative powers of the Canadian Security Intelligence Service and related agencies to ferret out terrorist activity at home and abroad.
Critics of Bill C-51 accuse the Harper Conservatives of gross overeach in the bill, which would broaden the concept of “terrorism” to include pretty much any thought, word or action that the government deems harmful to Canada’s political or economic interests.
Now, CBC journalist Neil Macdonald is reporting that the Harper Conservatives are indicating that they are willing to use provisions in Bill C-51 to charge advocates of BDS with hate crimes against Israel. Any move to do so would be contrary to the constitutional rights of Canadians related to free speech, conscience, assembly and more, but that’s unlikely to deter the prime minister and his followers who have made no secret of their fervent loyalty to the State of Israel.
They may have political and economic reasons for doing so, but as evangelical Christians Harper and his cronies also regard the current conflict in the Middle East as a step toward fulfilling Biblical prophecy tied to armageddon and the second coming of Christ. In essence, they’re totally cool with the idea of the world ending so they can go to their eternal reward, while non-believers, including Jews who fail to convert once Jesus returns to lay a smackdown on everyone, will be dispatched to Hell.
What a joke.