The Alliance of Concerned Jewish Canadians

October 23, 2007 11:07 ET

Jewish Group Condemns Meeting by Extremist Jewish Defence League

TORONTO, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - Oct. 23, 2007) -

Attention Assignment Editor

The Alliance of Concerned Jewish Canadians condemns a public meeting by the Jewish Defence League planned for tonight and calls on the Shaarei Tefillah Synagogue (3600 Bathurst Street) to cancel the event which features a speech by far-right Israeli politician Moshe Feiglin who has advocated the revocation of Israeli citizenship from non-Jews and the large scale deportation of Palestinians resident in Israel. Feiglin has been described as a "Jewish fascist" by former Israeli cabinet minister Tommy Lapid. (http://www.israelnationalnews.com/News/News.aspx/95131)

"There is no place in the Jewish community for fascists," said ACJC Administrative Council member Andy Lehrer, who conducted an investigation of the JDL earlier this year. "That such a hateful organization is having a public meeting in a synagogue is incompatible with Jewish principles. Most Jews unequivocally reject the extremists of the Jewish Defence League."

The Jewish Defence League is described by the Federal Bureau of Investigation in the United States as a "right-wing terrorist group" (http://www.fbi.gov/publications/terror/terror2000_2001.htm). In 2001 JDL Chairman Irv Rubin and his west coast organizer Earl Krugel were arrested for plotting to bomb a mosque and the office of a Lebanese-American US Congressman. Krugel pled guilty while Rubin committed suicide while awaiting trial.

The Canadian JDL relaunched itself in late 2006 after being absent for several years. Despite having had a number of protests and actively recruiting among Jewish youth, groups such as the Canadian Jewish Congress and the Bnai Brith have failed to openly condemn the JDL or attempt to educate the Jewish community and youth in particular about the danger of the organization. Despite the fact that the Anti-Defamation League of Bnai Brith in the United States openly condemns the JDL on its website (http://www.adl.org/extremism/jdl_chron.asp) Bnai Brith Canada has published a number of uncritical reports on the JDL in it's "Jewish Tribune" and, this past week, carried a front page advertisement promoting the JDL's meeting. (http://www.jewishtribune.ca/tribune/PDF/jt181007.pdf)

The Alliance of Concerned Jewish Canadians calls upon all Jewish organizations to join together in opposing the resurgent Jewish Defence League. "The fact that some who claim to be leaders of the Jewish community have not only failed to oppose the JDL but have actually allowed it a platform is unacceptable and cannot continue," said Lehrer.

ACJC is an umbrella organization of Canadian Jewish groups who demand Israel's withdrawal from the occupied Territories and Gaza and believe Canadian Jews should play a larger role in supporting and promoting a peaceful and just solution to the Israel-Palestinian conflict.

Contact Information

  • The Alliance of Concerned Jewish Canadians
    Andy Lehrer
    (416) 597-2740
    or
    The Alliance of Concerned Jewish Canadians
    Natalie LaRoche
    (416) 563-4322