|April 1, 1998|
Dear Ms. McLellan:
In taking at face value Jewish claims that their primary motive in putting forward Neal Sher as an adviser to Canada's Nazi hunters is the punishment of Nazi war criminals, you may be jeopardizing the physical safety of Canadians. The new possibility that the passage that I quote below introduces is that the Canadians who may be placed at risk are not only the non-Jewish ones accused of Nazi war crimes as I have already suggested in my letters to you of December 19 and December 30, 1997 but Jewish Canadians as well.
The following, then, is from Akiva Orr's Israel: Politics, Myths and Identity Crises. Akiva Orr is an Israeli Jew, born in Berlin in 1931, who served in the Israeli Army in 1948, and afterward read mathematics and physics at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem:
The [following] incident occurred in 1970, when I was speaking in Scarborough [England] at a fringe meeting of the Liberal Party annual conference. I explained that the conflict between Israel and the Arab world was essentially a conflict over lands and independence between Jewish immigrants and the indigenous Palestinian population. Until 1948 Palestine was populated by an Arab majority which was expropriated, exploited, and partially expelled by the Zionist immigrants from Europe. The immigrant settlers transformed the indigenous majority into a minority discriminated against in its own country, and imposed upon it a discriminatory state apparatus, namely a "Jewish state." No wonder the natives were restless. This came as a total revelation to the audience of some 500, who were used to apologetic versions of the Palestine conflict, in which Israel was presented as a small, democratic state created by the Jews who escaped from Auschwitz, a state that made "the desert bloom," and that was beleaguered by the surrounding Arab states for the sheer fact that it was Jewish.|
A lively session of questions from the audience followed. Suddenly someone at the back of the hall stood up and shouted, emotionally: "Israel expelled the Palestinian Arabs in 1948 as a response to the Jews who were expelled from the Arab states. This amounted to a population transfer,' which had occurred more than once this century and was a legitimate, if cruel, way of settling minority problems." I replied that in 1948 Jews were not expelled from countries like Iraq, Morocco, Algeria, Tunisia and Libya, but induced to leave by Zionist emissaries from Israel who often used dirty tricks like throwing bombs into synagogues to create the impression of anti-Jewish persecution to stampede the Jews to Israel.
This answer outraged my heckler even more, and he shouted in an agitated voice: "You are a liar, no Jew ever threw a bomb into a Jewish synagogue." The audience weren't used to seeing someone denounce a speaker as a "liar." Being British, they assumed such an accusation was based on solid information capable of withstanding a libel charge. The ball was now in my court, but having encountered this charge many times before I was well prepared. I had copies of the Israeli weekly Haolam Ha-zeh (of 20 April and 1 June 1966) with me, which published details, with photographs, of these events. Some Iraqi Jews who had become disabled as a result of the bombs thrown by Israeli agents into the Mas-uda Shemtov Synagogue in Baghdad had sued the Israeli government for damages, in Israel. The government had preferred to settle out of court and pay damages, but the legal exchanges had reached the Israeli press and had been published by some magazines. When I read out the details of the case from the Israeli magazine all eyes turned back towards my adversary. I demonstrated convincingly that I was not a liar. What would he say now?
There was a moment of silence and then he blurted out: "You see, unlike the Arab countries Israel is a democratic state. You can publish everything in the press there." The audience burst into laughter; I didn't. (Akiva Orr, Israel: Politics, Myths and Identity Crises, Pluto Press, London and Boulder Colorado, 1994, pp. 5-6.)