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  • West Bank Boycott?Reuel S. Amdur
    November 1, 2012

    Peter Beinart is an Orthodox Jew and ardent Zionist who calls for a limited boycott against Israel-limited to the West Bank. He spoke at Ottawa's Temple Israel on October 23. Beinart's talk was sponsored by Canadians for Peace Now. Peace Now is a dovish Israeli movement opposing the Occupation.

  • Winning Ways at Severn Avenue Public SchoolReuel S. Amdur
    November 1, 2012

    Miracles don't just happen. People make them happen. That is how Ottawa's Severn Avenue Public School jumped from an Ontario-wide ranking of achievement in 2005 at 35 from the bottom, up four years later by more than 1000 schools. The ranking put Severn at 1726 out of 2778 schools.

  • From Arab Spring to Winter: Courtesy of the U.S. & CanadaReuel S. Amdur
    November 1, 2012

    Arab freedom does not rank very high in Stephen Harper's priorities. That is why neither Canada nor the U.S. was cheering very loudly when the Egyptians were in the process of throwing off the chains of the Mubarak dictatorship. In that situation, Harper's expression of concern was that Egypt needed to keep the commitments made with Israel. The U.S. waffled because it wanted to keep its options open no matter who won.

  • Engler Raps EmpireReuel S. Amdur
    November 1, 2012

    Canada's foreign policy has served the interests of empire, "the British empire till after World War II when it was the American empire." That was what Yves Engler told an enthusiastic crowd on October 4 during an Ottawa stop during a tour organized by Canadians for Justice and Peace in the Middle East.

  • Can You Believe What You Read in the Citizen?Reuel S. Amdur
    November 1, 2012

    On September 2, a piece by the Ottawa Citizen's Heavy Thinker Robert Sibley appeared in that paper. "Digging up hatred" was the headline. Beginning with a discussion of a Peruvian neo-Nazi Jew-hater, it continued by examining anti-Semitism in other places. The existence of the problem in Canada was illustrated by the case of Klibanov and Bergamini, Carleton University students and Israel supporters, allegedly pursued from a bar in Hull, Quebec, by Muslim students from that same university.

  • Harper's War of 1812Reuel S. Amdur
    November 13, 2012

    Harper has been replaying the War of 1812 all year, to commemorate its bicentennial. More important, to deflect criticism for cutting heritage and cultural funding for various programs such as Library and Archives Canada, he is setting himself up as a heritage hero with his splashy commemoration. The cost of the celebration? $28 million, but that is not quite enough.

  • Can you believe what you read in the Citizen?Reuel S. Amdur
    November 13, 2012

    On September 2, a piece by the Ottawa Citizen's Heavy Thinker Robert Sibley appeared in that paper. "Digging up hatred" was the headline. Beginning with a discussion of a Peruvian neo-Nazi Jew-hater, it continued by examining anti-Semitism in other places. The existence of the problem in Canada was illustrated by the case of Klibanov and Bergamini, Carleton University students and Israel supporters, allegedly pursued from a bar in Hull, Quebec, by Muslim students from that same university.

  • The Dilemmas of a Liberal ZionistReuel S. Amdur
    November 13, 2012

    Mira Sucharov, who teaches political science at Carleton University, was invited to deliver the sermon at First Unitarian Congregation in Ottawa on September 23, during the Days of Awe between Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur. Jacob Caines, the church's music director, blew the shofar for the service.

  • Ringside Seat at the Arab SpringReuel S. Amdur
    November 13, 2012

    "All of a sudden, we all turned into war correspondents." That was Hadeel Al-Shalchi's experience in finding herself in the midst of an Arab world suddenly erupting in revolt. She spoke at Carleton University on September 19 about her experience of being a correspondent in a war zone. Al-Shalchi began working overseas for the Associated Press (AP) but now works for Reuters. With budget cuts in the media, she feels fortunate in having the opportunity.

  • Failing Grade for Carleton ReportReuel S. Amdur
    December 2, 2012

    Carleton University's effort at promoting intergroup harmony has been received on campus with something less than universal applause. The report of the Commission on Inter-Cultural, Inter-Religious and Inter-Racial relations on Campus relies on a survey of students, faculty, and employees. The Commission was chaired by former Senator Landon Pearson. An immediate issue arises with the response rate. Fewer than 12% of the students responded. Does that response rate itself tell us something? Perhaps that the concerns explored in the study were simply not salient, that people were not concerned? Then there is the question of sheer numbers. The report gives particular attention to Jews. Yet there were only 29 Jewish employees and 28 Jewish students in the sample.

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