As I mentioned earlier, Dr. Nazi Khatatba, one of the head honchos of Palestine House, said about the planned JDL-Canada vigil “you are welcome in the Palestine House if you didn’t learn the lesson from [your] last visit.” Despite the implied threat, yesterday’s event was peaceful. Apparently, the Arabs were those who learned the lesson that beating Jews in Canada is not a very profitable venture.
The event started at 2 p.m. when the JDL-Canada members and their supporters gathered across the street from Palestine House. Unlike the last time, when the Arabs brought in a huge violent crowd, very few people opposed the vigil.
The supporters of Hamas were hiding inside and you could see them behind the glass door and the windows – grumpy and unfriendly, but avoiding direct confrontation. A few of their photographers walked in front of the House diligently taking pictures and filming the protesters.
I spotted just one “friend” from the previous fight. Despite the quasi-military camouflage jacket, this time he was peaceful – nervously smoking and “patrolling” the parking lot.
The lack of physical confrontation was compensated by something that resembled a musical duel. The Arabs placed near the sidewalk powerful loudspeakers, which blasted horrible Arab music and jihad rap. JDL matched the challenge with its own source of music, which was just as loud. Still, this was much better than a fistfight.
There were more representatives of the media at this protest and they kept walking around with their cameras and microphones trying to figure out why the two groups stood against each other. From listening to their questions, it was painfully clear that most of the cute reporters knew very little about the Muslims extremism that caused the protest. And I don’t think that the “Palestinian” side explained the situation.
JDL-Canada and their supporters brought Canadian and Israeli flags. The signs they carried condemned the Arab terrorism and opposed the destructive work of Palestine House, which for years has been a major support centre of Hamas, PLO and other anti-Semitic terrorist organizations. Some of the leaders of the House have personally expressed anti-Semitic and pro-terrorist ideas.
After singing the Canadian National Anthem and Hatikvah, the JDL-Canada Director for Ontario Julius Suraski explained why the group organized the protest – to oppose the harm done by Palestine House. Then he introduced the National Director Meir Weinstein, who gave an emotional speech. He exposed the devious nature of that institution, which, under the guise of “cultural centre” promotes hatred. That doesn’t help education or integration. Even the defunding of Palestine House (which used to get $1 million yearly in government funding) didn’t serve as a wakeup call. They continued to do exactly what they were doing before. The only solution is to shut down that harmful institution.
Weinstein was followed by a few words by Vera Held and a short speech by Mark Vandermaas (the founder of Israel Truth Week). He reminded the participants that organizations like Palestine House obfuscate and distort the truth about the Middle East. Their main target is Israel, which they want to delegitimize, hiding the fact that its land was recognized by the international community in 1922 as a home of the Jews.
Here is a short movie, which shows highlights from the event:
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