Name all the Dead-Everyone Matters

Name all the Dead-Everyone Matters: Jewish terrorist victim dies after a year in a coma

As Published in the Victoria Standard: November 9, 2015

I wish to highlight the hesitation of Canada's mainstream press concerning efforts to expose and comment on the rarely-reported aspects of the ongoing tensions between Israeli state/expansionist interests and the various Palestinian factions and Israeli peace activists. Until elite gatekeepers publish commentary that grants moral equivalency to both sides in the dispute, the Palestinian cause will continue to suffer from negative public perceptions in Canada, the U.S. and elsewhere.

It's almost as the Canadian media establishment fears the attentions of organizations like Honest Reporting Canada; a Orwellian-titled lobby group eager to expose anti-Semitism according its own flexible and highly-subjective definition. As well, blatant anti-Palestinian bias is being subsidized by Canadian taxpayers and reported uncritically. Conservative Senator Linda Frum commented in a 2013 MacLean’s magazine article that Canadian Jews had simply grown tired of the”…notion that, when Israelis and Palestinians quarrel, Canada should consider the grievances of both sides equally.”

While I reject the senseless violence that killed Mr. Rothman; it is inconceivable that a non-combatant Palestinian of Canadian origins would receive such public attention had they been killed during one of Israel’s regular Gaza assaults or West Bank targeted assassinations. The last time a Palestinian victim of Israeli violence was actually mentioned by name was the recent case of a Palestinian Authority legislator who suffered a heart attack after a scuffle with Israeli police.

While the Rothman piece in the October 26, 2015 Ottawa Citizen was a gracious account of a Canadian Jew assaulted last year in Jerusalem; we might remember that this man freely chose to inhabit a contested and dangerous city previously conquered and held by military force in defiance of international law. Therefore it is possible to simultaneously and reasonably acknowledge both the tragedy of his murder and his acceptance of serious risk in Jerusalem; a city where Arabs have been gradually marginalized and ghettoized since the 1967 Israeli victory and seizure of Gaza, the West Bank, the Golan Heights and Jerusalem.


I forwarded this letter to Ottawa talk radio commentator Lowell Green and others for possible on-air discussion but Green was so incensed by my assertions that he emailed me to state: "Don’t you dare ever contact me again you sick bastard. If I ever hear from you again I will report you as spreading hate." While such reflexive vitriol is standard on talk radio, it adds nothing to the discussion and helps no one. Therefore, it is important to sometimes remind those in the radio pulpit that their bold generalities are easily refuted with modest research and an open mind. Not surprisingly, a small rural newspaper displays more courage than all the corporate media when it comes to commentary on the Middle East.