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Canada: Government-funded event will promote antisemitic ideas

B’nai Brith has revealed that the World Social Forum (WSF), a state-backed event due to take place in Montreal, will be promoting antisemitic ideas.

The event takes up various causes, such as “workers against Neoliberalism”, “facing the Capitalist crisis” and “decolonization”. According to B’nai Brith, one talk is titled “Terrorizm, Wahabbism, Zionism” (sic.) and featured a picture of a Wahabbist terrorist emerging from from the mouth of “Uncle Sam”, with Uncle Sam emerging from the mouth of a caricature of a Charedi Jewish man. The use of such an image, which implies that Jews are responsible both for American policy and Wahabbism, is clearly antisemitic, but appears to have been removed since B’nai Brith drew attention to it. The title also seems to suggest a connection between “Zionism” and terrorism, a common trope in antisemitic conspiracy theories.

One of the speakers at the event Diana Ralph, is a conspiracy theorist who, among other things, accused Israel of being behind the 9/11 attacks.

The event also features Sabine Freisinger, former President of Concordia Student Union, who was apparently involved in a riot that forced Benjamin Netanyahu to cancel a speech and in which a Rabbi and his wife were assaulted and a Holocaust survivor was kicked in the groin. Freisinger’s activities have since included targeting a local shoe shop for selling a small number of Israeli shoes.

B’nai Brith notes also that the conference features a dozen workshops devoted to a total boycott of Israel, a policy which the Canadian Parliament has committed to resisting.