The Métropolitain

Boycott this!

By Beryl Wajsman on February 16, 2011

Ainsi, une partie des puissantes forces "progressives" du Québec ont décidé de boycotter les produits et les compagnies israéliens en raisonde « l’apartheid politique" d'Israël. Simplement de l’hypocrisie et une ruse. Par leurs mots et leurs actions elle a démontré, en folie et en honte, le vrai visage de cette partie de la société « civile » du Québec qui tout en déclarant hardiment sa propre « différence », est vraiment hanté par un doute de soi-même poussé par une jalousie des croyances individuelles des autres.

Un aspect du dernier effort de boycott qui est agréable est la condamnation quasi-unanime de la participation du député de Québec Solidaire Amir Khadir dans l’harcèlement d'un individu qu’il est sensé représenter - Yves Archambault - qui possède un magasin de chaussuresnommé Le Marcheur et qui a la « témérité » de vendre des chaussures israéliennes. Peut-être les voix plus raisonnables de la société civile du Québec devraient maintenant se concentrer sur la CSN et la CSQ.

This call for a boycott of products and divestiture of investments in Israeli companies is not important in and of itself. Its importance lies in its manifestation of that part of Quebec society that is still caught up in the hypocrisies of petty narcissisms and the prejudices of its own narrow particularities. And how petty the narcissisms are. These groups start boycotting Israeli consumer goods and then want to move on to companies such as Caterpillar that, besides tractors, sells boots, caps, toys and pocketknives to Israel. In other words nothing that would really cause the boycotters any discomfort.

DSCN0807.JPGThe cell phone was developed in Israel by Israelis working in the Israeli branch of Motorola. Most of the Windows NT and XP operating systems were developed by Microsoft-Israel. The Pentium microprocessor  was made in Israel. Voice mail technology was developed in Israel. So our suggestion is that  these"progressives" first cause themselves a little discomfort and refrain from using all these instruments that allow them to disseminate their  disinformation and propaganda. But no, that would be too inconvenient for them. They want their cake and they want to eat it too. Particularly those pseudo-intellectuals in PAJU. Well, boycott this PAJU!

Arabs inside Israel have complete civil rights including the recognition of Arabic as an official language. There are Arab judges, diplomats and some 15 members of Parliament including several representing parties dedicated to the break-up of the State. Jews still cannot get visas to most Arab countries. We would also like to remind the CSN and CSQ that Israel is the only society in the world where more than half its population is affiliated with unions. In most of the Arab Middle East union leaders are routinely harassed, beaten up and sometimes killed.

Except for the right to vote,  Palestinians living on the West Bank have -  in law -many of the same equity rights. And yes, far too many cases where rights have been abrogated by  individual Israeli officials. There are problems there. But hardly of the type to justify the use of the word apartheid. Israel has extended full medical, educational and social services to the Palestinian population. The infant mortality rate, as well as the rate of those finishing high school is the highestamoung Arab societies in the Middle East. Some 30% of the student body of Hebrew University is Palestinian . Israel not only subsidizes social services – including Palestinian universities – it has also helped to get the Palestinian Authority on its feet by fully outfitting its police force including the supply of some 150,000 weapons.

Les politiques de l’apartheid en Afrique du Sud visaient la ségrégation, la marginalisation et l’annulation de sa population noire. L'Israël est en Cisjordanie seulement parce qu'elle s'est défendue contre des guerres d'agression de ses voisins arabes. Il n'y a aucune politique de destruction de la population palestinienne. Tout à fait le contraire. L'Israël toute entière cherche sa reconnaissance et la paix de sorte qu'elle puisse seretirer.

Several years ago, at the first ever conference between leaders of Quebec civil society and Israeli diplomats - sponsored by the Institute for Public Affairs of Montreal - FTQ President Henri Massé said that he saw nothing to condemn in Israel's policies and vehemently denounced Palestinian violence and hate. For the sake of the credibility of Quebec's true progressives, it is time to hear this message out in the open, clearly proclaimed and candidly defended. If it is not done, then Quebec's dream of the "projêt national" will be hijacked by purveyors of parochial prejudice, like Amir Khadir, rather than led by those loyal to the doctrines of social democracy and truth.

Martin Luther King a dit : « Une société commence à mourir quand elle demeure silencieuse envers l’injustice ». Au Québec, aujourd'hui,résolvons de ne pas rester silencieux quand nous entendons des mensonges déguisés en vérité.