The Yale Initiative for the Interdisciplinary Study of Antisemitism
Newsletter
Volume 1 No. 13
6 April 2007

YIISA SEMINAR SERIES ANTISEMITISM IN COMPARATIVE PERSPECTIVE

On April 12, Ruth Wisse, Professor of Comparative Literature, Martin Peretz Professor Yiddish Literature, Harvard University, will speak on “Why Antisemitism Succeeds.” This seminar will be held in Linsly-Chittenden, 63 High Street, room 101.

On April 19, Wolfgang Benz, Director, Center for Research on Antisemitism, University Technical Berlin, will speak on “Antisemitism as Phenomenon of Every Day Life in Contemporary Germany.” This seminar will be held at ISPS, 77 Prospect Street, room A002.

Please see the seminar website for the Spring semester schedule. Please note that many of our seminars this semester will be held in room 101 at Linsly-Chittenden.

EVENTS AT YALE

Tuesday, April 10 @ 7:00 pm
Encounter Point, a documentary on the Palestinian-Israeli conflict.
A discussion with the film’s director, Ronit Avni, will follow the movie.
Luce Hall Auditorium, 34 Hillhouse
Sponsored by the Council of Middle East Studies at McMillan Center

Thursday, April 12 @ 4:00
Making the World Safe for Difference, and How it Can Be Accomplished?
with Alan Slifka, The Abraham Fund
Luce Hall Auditorium, 34 Hillhouse
Hosted by the Council of Middle East Studies and the Slifka Center

REPORTS

Policy Watch: How Long Can the Palestinian Unity Government Last?
(Washington Institute) This approval of a new unity government by the Palestinian Legislative Council (PLC) does not reflect the many internal and cross-factional tensions that will ultimately undercut the current Fatah-Hamas coalition. As these elements continue to consolidate control, existing tensions between the rival parties will be exacerbated, affecting the future of the Palestinian unity government from within.
Click here to read


ARTICLES OF INTEREST

MIDDLE EAST

Sudden Decision Owes More to Tension in Tehran than to Britain’s Diplomacy
(Times) The surprise release of 15 Royal Navy personnel on the orders of President Ahmadinejad was the result of a fierce debate within the Iranian regime between extremist and pragmatic elements in the leadership, rather than the product of negotiations with Britain.
Click here to read

Tehran Likely to Pay Long-Term Price
(Washington Post) The Iranian government believes it scored a number of points, the sources said. As the Islamic republic faces growing pressure at the United Nations over its nuclear program, Tehran signaled that diplomacy — rather than confrontation — can defuse problems with the international community in the end.
Click here to read

Mahmoud’s ‘Gift’
(Wall Street Journal) An opinion piece from the WSJ’s editorial page on the British captive situation in Iran: “…the events of the past two weeks show…the influence inside the regime of the Revolutionary Guards, who provoked the incident by seizing the sailors in Iraqi waters only hours after a unanimous vote in the U.N. Security Council to stiffen sanctions against Iran’s nuclear program.”
Click here to read

Here’s a Way to Deal with the Scorpion
(Times Online) Why did the mullahs decide to seize the hostages and why did they release them unexpectedly? Hostage-taking has been part of the Islamic Republic’s strategy since its inception in 1979.
Click here to read

Iran’s Ploy Buys Time for Weapons Programme
(Telegraph) An op-ed discussing how Iran’s volte-face over the 15 British sailors and Royal Marines may just have been a public relations ploy to buy time for its nuclear programme. Mahmoud Ahmadinejad deliberately sought to give the image of giving into British diplomatic pressure not just to improve his standing internationally but also to undercut the United States.
Click here to read

Elite Revolutionary Guard Broadens Its Influence in Iran
(Washington Post) Iran’s Revolutionary Guard Corps, the elite unit at the heart of the latest Middle East crisis, has greater power today than at any point since the revolution’s early days to export Islamic militancy and challenge the West’s presence in the region, say U.S. officials and Iran experts.
Click here to read

‘Iranian Jews Ready to Defend Iran’
(Jerusalem Post) The state-run news agency of Iran, IRNA, issued a statement supposedly by the leaders of the Iranian Jewish community, saying that Iran’s Jews have a “commitment to defend the national interests of Iranians” and are ready to “defend all national interests of Iranians and to observe the guidelines set by [the] Supreme Leader Ayatollah Seyed Ali Khamenei.” The statement, however, contains two enormous inaccuracies which seriously undermine its credibility.
Click here to read

Iranian President Lauds Suicide Bombers as Invincible
(YNet) Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad praised his country’s ability to recruit “hundreds of suicide bombers a day,” saying “suicide is an invincible weapon” during a visit to a site south Iran used to prepare suicide bombers during the Iraq-Iran war. He also praised Hizbullah fighters for their suicidal spirit during last summer’s confrontation with Israel.
Click here to read

Hardliner who Gained Power with the Help of Mullahs
(Telegraph) When he ran for president, Mr Ahmadinejad refused to spend one penny on his campaign. Instead he relied on his populist image and a clear message of a return to austerity and the values of the 1979 revolution. With the backing of the preachers in the mosques he won almost two thirds of the vote on a very low turnout.
Click here to read

Why Sanctions Are Working
(Newsweek) Columnist Fareed Zakaria writes that events have made clear that the containment strategy regarding the Iranian nuclear threat is working­to a point. Pragmatist proposed a strategy of containment and diplomacy that, working with the rest of the world, would ratchet up the pressure on Iran.
Click here to read

Getting Serious about Iran: A Military Option
(Commentary Magazine) American foreign policy elites view military action against Iran as a sure disaster. This opinion may be short-sighted and ignores facts that seem to suggest that Iran has no aim of relinquishing its goal of becoming a nuclear power.
Click here to read

Russian Expert Says Iran Can Make Nuclear Weapons
(Reuters) A Vienna-based diplomat familiar with International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) monitoring said Iran had already grasped enrichment technology so Western powers should focus on trying to limit the program rather than shut it down.
Click here to read

Israel Warns of Hamas Military Buildup in Gaza
(NY Times) Senior Israel officials reported that Hamas is constructing tunnels and underground bunkers and smuggling in ground-to-air missiles and military-grade explosives. The officials said that Hamas had learned tactics from Hezbollah, the Lebanese militant group, which brought in and stored thousands of rockets in bunkers near the northern Israeli border before last summer’s war.
Click here to read

Is Hamas Preparing for War?
(Time) Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert described Palestinian Prime Minister Ismael Haniyeh as “a terrorist” and accused him of personally masterminding the transfer of $1 million in funds from overseas for “terrorist actions against Israeli citizens.” Olmert’s remarks were seen by many Palestinians as an attempt by Israelis to discredit the Palestinian unity government, but Olmert’s wariness over Hamas is shared by U.S. and Palestinian officials.
Click here to read

New Fatah Gaza Force Training for Future Clashes with Hamas
(Ha’aretz) Fatah has recruited 1,400 combatants in preparation for violent clashes with Hamas. Palestinian Authority Chairman Mahmoud Abbas the establishment of a new security apparatus in the Gaza Strip for the same purpose.
Click here to read

Hamas Threatens Israel
(Ynet) Hamas held intensive training sessions in Gaza in preparation for a potential IDF raid.
Click here to read

What It Means If the Button is Pushed
(Ha’aretz) Herman Kahn wrote “On Thermonuclear War” in 1961. The main thesis of Kahn’s book is that a nuclear war is winnable. Anyone wishing to adopt these optimistic scenarios should look at the estimates of the damage that a nuclear strike in the heart of Greater Tel Aviv would wreak.
Click here to read

British Envoy Seeks to Free Reporter Seized in Gaza
(New York Times) A senior British diplomat met with the Palestinian prime minister in Gaza on Thursday to discuss the fate of a kidnapped BBC correspondent, Alan Johnston. It was the first meeting between a senior Hamas official and an official European Union envoy since the new Palestinian unity government was formed in mid-March.
Click here to read

Rise in Radical Islam Last Straw for Lebanon’s Christians
(Telegraph) Christians are fleeing Lebanon to escape political and economic crises and signs that radical Islam is on the rise in the country. In a poll to be published next month which was exclusively leaked to The Sunday Telegraph, nearly half of all Maronites, the largest Christian denomination in the country, said they were considering emigrating.
Click here to read

Iran, Syria, Hizbullah Preparing for Summer War
(Jerusalem Post) Iran, Syria, and Hizbullah are preparing their defenses for a potential war this summer. According to OC Military Intelligence, they are more worried about an attack by the US than from Israel.
Click here to read

Haniyeh Gave Saudi Cash to Hamas Armed Wing
(Reuters) Israeli officials on Sunday said Palestinian Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh of Hamas received funds from a Saudi donor and had $1 million of it transferred to Hamas’s armed wing two days before he formed a unity government. Haniyeh aide Ghazi Hamad said the statements were “unfounded and incorrect” and formed part of an Israeli campaign to undermine Haniyeh and the unity government.
Click here to read

British Envoy Meets Palestinian PM
(YNet) A British envoy met Palestinian Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh of Hamas on Thursday to discuss efforts to free an abducted journalist, a British diplomat said, despite an EU ban on contacts with the group.
Click here to read

Saudi Source: No Talks before Israel Accepts Arab Peace Plan
(Ha’aretz) Saudi Arabia said Tuesday that Israel must first accept the Arab peace initiative before it would agree to any direct talks with Prime Minister Ehud Olmert.
Click here to read

Saudis Say Israel Must Withdraw First
(Washington Post) Saudi Arabia signaled Monday it is unlikely to accept an Israeli invitation to a regional peace conference, saying that Israel must first stop mistreating Palestinians and move to withdraw from Arab lands.
Click here to read

Arms Smuggling Threat to Beirut Truce
(Gulf Daily News) UN chief Ban Ki-moon warned yesterday that arms smuggling from Syria could threaten the ceasefire in Lebanon and urged full compliance with a UN resolution that ended the summer war between Hizbollah and Israel.
Click here to read

Hamas Gains in Teachers Union Election
(Jerusalem Post) A Hamas-affiliated list has scored a major victory in elections for the Palestinian Teachers Union in the West Bank and Gaza Strip in yet another indication that the Islamic movement’s status has not been affected by the international boycott of the Hamas-led government.
Click here to read

Sheikh Dead in Gaza Power Struggle
(Jerusalem Post) A prominent sheikh in Gaza City was assassinated over the weekend. This draws attention to a power struggle between Hamas and an al-Qaida affiliated group that identifies with Salafism, a branch of Islam that urges the purging of foreign innovation from Islam.
Click here to read

Blood Feuds Tearing Gaza Apart
(Guardian) There is now a cycle of family feuds in Gaza, an endless toll of kidnapping and murder fuelled by the political and factional violence still tearing this small strip of land apart.
Click here to read

UN Rights Council Adopts Global Religious Defamation Act
(Jerusalem Report) Islamic countries pushed a resolution through the UN Human Rights Council urging global prohibition on the public defamation of religion. This move is largely a response to a Danish newspaper that published caricatures of the Muslim Prophet Muhammad last year.
Click here to read

The Limits of Bad Policy
(Washington Post) An editorial discussing the limits of the Bush administration’s “poorly conceived” policy in the Middle East, in which the administration planned on aligning “mainstream” Sunni Arab states against Iran and its “extremist” allies, coupled with a renewal of the Arab-Israeli peace process.
Click here to read

Qaeda Is Seen as Restoring Leadership
(NY Times) As Al Qaeda rebuilds in Pakistan’s tribal areas, a new generation of leaders has emerged under Osama bin Laden to cement control over the network’s operations, surprising U.S. intelligence agencies about the group’s ability to rebound from an American-led offensive.
Click here to read

Yemeni Jews Face Growing Sectarian Troubles
(Christian Science Monitor) Shiite rebels, entangled in a fight with the government, drove members of the country’s small Jewish community from their remote village.
Click here to read

Failure to Launch: Why the U.S. Can’t Make Peace in Israel
(New Republic) Condoleezza Rice’s shuttle diplomacy efforts aren’t working–and they shouldn’t be expected to. For reasons of timing, personality, and politics (both in the region and back home) current efforts to jumpstart the peace process won’t go anywhere.
Click here to read

NORTH AMERICA

Crude Bomb Targets Montreal Jewish Community Centre
(Canadian Broadcasting Corporation) A small bomb exploded in front of the Ben Weider Jewish Community Centre, frightening several employees inside. Investigators are not calling the fire a hate crime, although they haven’t yet dismissed the possibility, but Jewish leaders suspect anti-Semitic sentiments may have motivated the attack.
Click here to read

Bombing Prompts Call for Permanent Hate-Crimes Unit
(Gazette) “We are stunned at this appalling attack on a Jewish community institution, which is doubly offensive because once again this attack comes as Jews celebrate Passover,” said Joachim Normand, executive director of the Canadian Jewish Congress, Quebec Region.
Click here to read

Synagogue in Chicago Possible Target of Hate Crime
(Chicago Tribune) A synagogue on Chicago’s North Side may have been the target of a hate crime after vandals spray-painted derogatory messages on the building early Saturday, police said.
Click here to read

Synagogue in Chicago Vandalized
(Jerusalem Post) Vandals spray-painted “Free Palestine” and “Death to Israel” on the Ner Tamid Ezra Ha-Bonim Synagogue on the North Side of Chicago during Pessah.
Click here to read

First They Came for the Jews
(Wall Street Journal) Dorothy Rabinowitz comments on the first ever attempt by government prosecutors to convict private citizens under the 1919 Espionage Act. In June 2004, a Pentagon analyst wearing a FBI wiretap participated in a sting operation that set up employees of the American Israel Public Affairs Committee
Click here to read

US Jews Can Learn from the Canadian Community
(Jerusalem Post) Gary Wexler, the founder and president of Passion Marketing and a member of the Jewish Telegraphic Agency board of directors, writes about the difference between Canadian and American Jewish philanthropy.
Click here to read
Click here to read

Up and Coming in Beverly Hills
(Jerusalem Report) Jimmy Delshad, a 66-year-old Iranian Jewish immigrant, was elected major of Beverly Hills on March 6.
Click here to read

Book Says Kissinger Delayed Telling Nixon about Yom Kippur War
(Ha’aretz) Nixon and Kissinger: Partners in Power is written by presidential historian Robert Dallek, who spent four years reviewing the Nixon administration’s recently opened archives, including 20,000 pages of Kissinger’s telephone transcripts and hundreds of hours of Nixon tapes.
Click here to read


EUROPE

Britain’s Feeble Response
(YNet) In this op-ed, Shlomo Papirblatt says that the abduction of the British marines and sailors by Iranian forces in Iraq’s territorial waters is beginning to look like one of Britain’s and the West’s most embarrassing moments – weakness and helplessness on the British government’s part vis-à-vis defiance and audacity from Teheran.
Click here to read

Britain’s Humiliation and Europe’s
(Washington Post) Charles Krauthammer writes on the seizure and release of 15 British sailors… “You would think maintaining international order means, at least, challenging acts of piracy. No challenge here. Instead, a quiet capitulation.”
Click here to read

U.K Gov’t Worried by Growing anti-Jewish Sentiment on Campuses
(Ha’aretz) The government’s response, released yesterday and presented by Race and Faith Minister Phil Woolas, stated: “We are aware that current rhetoric about Israel and Zionism (from the far-right, the far-left and Islamic extremists alike) employs anti-Semitic motifs consistent with ancient forms of hatred toward Jews.”
Click here to read

UK: Shoah Left Out of History Lessons
(Jerusalem Post) Some British schools are dropping the Holocaust from history lessons to avoid offending Muslim students, a government-sponsored survey has revealed. Teachers are afraid to confront anti-Semitism and Holocaust denial among Muslim pupils, according to a Historical Association survey funded by the Department for Education and Skills.
Click here to read

BAE Hired Actresses for Saudis
(Sunday Times) A secret slush fund set up by BAE Systems, Britain’s biggest defence contractor, was used to pay tens of thousands of pounds to two British actresses while they befriended a senior Saudi prince and his entourage.
Click here to read

Le Kremlin redoute une fièvre estudiantine à Moscou
(Le Figaro) Des étudiants en sociologie de l’université de Moscou, qui revendiquent un enseignement moderne, sont considérés comme de dangereux révolutionnaires par le Kremlin.
Click here to read


WEEKLY QUOTES (Source Canadian Institute for Jewish Research)
“On the occasion of the birthday of the great prophet and for the occasion of the passing of Christ, I say the Islamic Republic Government and the Iranian people­with all powers and legal right to put the soldiers on trial­forgave those 15…. This pardon is a gift to the British people.”
­Iranian demagogue Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, in a theatrical performance yesterday, lecturing the world on the so-called wrongs of the West, before announcing that he has “forgiven” his British captives and would release them. When he met the British hostages after the press conference, Ahmadinejad exuded cheerful malice: “So you came on a mandatory vacation?” At the press conference, Ahmandinejad also bestowed medals of bravery on three coast guard officers, including the commander of the group that seized the Britons on March 23. (London Daily Telegraph, National Post,  April 5)

“The response by the government was restrained. That gives him [Ahmadinejad] confidence that if he takes equal or greater provocative measures in the future he need not fear a strong response.”­ John Bolton, former U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations, concluding that the Iranians have won a huge propaganda and political coup from this crisis. Bolton called the incident a “low-cost way of testing British resolve” that resulted in a “restrained” response from the U.K. government. “Ahmadinejad has shown he was the puppet master on this,” Bolton said. “I think he will now ratchet up his nuclear program.” Ahmadinejad claimed the standoff over the sailors was resolved after Britain sent a letter pledging  it would not enter Iranian waters again. The British Foreign office would not discuss the note it delivered over the weekend, but the Ministry of Defence says it has incontrovertible evidence that the British team was three kilometres inside Iraqi waters when they were captured during a search of an Indian vessel on March 23. (National Post, April 5)

“We were very pleased with the reassurances we received from the [Syrian] President that he was ready to resume the peace process. He’s ready to engage in negotiations [for] peace with Israel…. [This meeting] enabled us to communicate a message from Prime Minister Olmert that Israel was ready to engage in peace talks as well.” ­Nancy Pelosi, Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives, following her meeting with Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad. Yesterday, Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert issued a rare “clarification” that contradicted Pelosi’s remarks in Damascus about Israel’s willingness to engage in peace talks. According to the statement released by Olmert’s office, the Prime Minister emphasized in his meeting with Pelosi on Sunday that “although Israel is interested in peace with Syria, that country continues to be part of the Axis of Evil and a force that encourages terror in the entire Middle East.” Olmert, the statement clarified, told Pelosi that Syria’s sincerity about a genuine peace with Israel would be judged by its willingness to “cease its support of terror, cease its sponsoring of the Hamas and Islamic Jihad organizations, refrain from providing weapons to Hizbullah and bringing about the destabilizing of Lebanon, cease its support of terror in Iraq, and relinquish the strategic ties it is building with the extremist regime in Iran.” (Jerusalem Post, April 5)

“Photo opportunities and/or meetings with President Assad lead the Assad government to believe they’re part of the mainstream of the international community. In fact, they’re a state sponsor of terror.”­President George W. Bush, denouncing Nancy Pelosi’s visit to Syria, saying it sends mixed signals to Assad’s government. “Sending delegations doesn’t work,” said Bush. “It’s simply been counterproductive.” Bush stated that past meetings between high-level American and Syrian officials have done nothing to persuade Assad to stop supporting Hamas and Hezbollah terror groups (both groups have offices in Damascus); to halt Syrian efforts to destabilize Lebanon; or to stop allowing foreign fighters from crossing over Syria’s border into Iraq. (Ha’aretz, April 4)

“We are dealing with an incident that has all the hallmarks of a hate-motivated crime… It was a Molotov cocktail kind of device that was put ­not in a park or a public pool or something­ but in a clearly identifiable Jewish institution on the well-known Jewish holiday of Passover, three years almost to the day after the Talmud Torahs bombing.”­Steven Slimovitch, national legal counsel for the Quebec region of B’nai Brith Canada, denouncing Tuesday’s bombing at the entrance to the YM-YWHA, a Jewish community centre in Snowdon, as an obviously a hate crime which should be investigated as such. No one was injured in the blast which caused little damage.  Police spokesperson Lynne Labelle cautioned that police are not yet calling the bombing a hate crime, but admitted it was a possibility. Hate crimes are defined as crimes motivated by hatred or discrimination against an identifiable social group, whether that group is defined by its religion, sexual orientation, ethnicity, national origin or other distinguishing factor. The firebombing of the Skver-Toldos Jewish Boys School in Outremont on Sept. 2 was also not classified as hate crime by Montreal police. Marvin Rotrand, city councillor for Snowdon ward, said he wants Montreal police to take Tuesday’s incident seriously and investigate it as a potential hate crime: “The fact this incident happened at a Jewish institution, amid a number of other Jewish institutions on the second night of Passover, is more than a coincidence.” (Montreal Gazette, April 5)

SHORT TAKES
UN CRITIC CENSORED; SPEECH BANNED
­ (New York) UN Watch Executive Director Hillel Neuer, was threated with censure following testimony he gave at the before UN Human Rights Council 4th Session, on 23 March in Geneva. Neuer criticized the new Human Rights Council on its record of ignoring gross human rights violations worldwide unless they can be blamed on Israel. In an unprecedented reaction, the Council’s Chair, Luis Alfonso de Alba, refused to thank UN Watch for the statement, calling it “inadmissible”. Not only did the Council’s president ban the statement from being delivered again, Neuer’s speech was stricken without notice from the official extranet record of the Human Rights Council Secretariat. UN Watch has now assembled a new 3-minute compilation, a small sample, of the daily invective and truly offensive statements that are routinely welcomed by the UN Human Rights Council, including insults against ambassadors and mocking of human rights experts; justification of violence against women and gays; glorification of terrorism; Holocaust denial; and demonization of Israel. (UN Watch, March 29, April 2; Click here to watch the “admissible” video clip, as well as Hillel Neuer’s banned speech)

HAMAS WILL NOT BE ALLOWED TO CONTINUE ARMING­(Gaza) Israel Defense Minister Amir Peretz said April 2 that Israel will not allow the continued strengthening and arming of Hamas and other terrorist organizations in the Gaza Strip. Peretz made the statement during a visit to an Israel Defense Forces base in Northern Gaza, where he maintained that Israel is monitoring the northern border, and says that all provocation attempts to incite the area must stop. Peretz also said that Israel is making great attempts to bring the abducted IDF soldiers back. (Ha’aretz, April 2)

PALESTINIANS KIDNAPPING MORE FOREIGNERS ­(Ramallah) Kidnappings, particularly those of foreign journalists, have become increasingly frequent in Gaza, where holding a foreigner is seen as a way to extract money or jobs from those in power. Initially, such kidnappings lasted only a few hours and ended up without serious harm to the person abducted. “When you haven’t one power, when you have tens of factions and hundreds or thousands or tens of thousands of weapons in the hands of people…then everything is open,” said Sufian Abu Zaida, a former Palestinian cabinet minister and senior Fatah official, in a recent meeting with journalists. “As a Palestinian I am really sad for my people.” The net result is that fewer foreigners are working in Gaza, both in the aid community and among journalists. (Globe and Mail, April 3)

SCHOOLS DROP HOLOCAUST LESSONS ­(London) Teachers in Britain are dropping subjects such as the Holocaust and the Crusades from history lessons because they do not want to cause offence to children from certain races or religions, a report claims. The report, produced with funding from the British Department of Education, concluded that “Staff may wish to avoid causing offence or appearing insensitive to individuals or groups in their classes. In particular settings, teachers of history are unwilling to challenge highly contentious or charged versions of history in which pupils are steeped at home, in their community or in a place of worship.” (TimesOnline-UK, April 2)

U.K. WORRIED ABOUT ANTISEMITISM ON CAMPUSES­ (London) The British government has stated its opposition to an academic boycott on Israel, and  is concerned about the rising tide of antisemitic discourse and antisemitism on university campuses, according to the British government’s response following the All-Party Parliamentary Inquiry into antisemitism report. The government’s response, released March 29 and presented by Race and Faith Minister Phil Woolas, stated: “We are specifically concerned about significant indications that, unlike other forms of racism, antisemitism is being accepted within parts of society instead of being condemned.” In specifically noting the problem of antisemitism on campus, the report stated: “We conclude that calls to boycott contact with academics in Israel are an assault on academic freedom and intellectual exchange.” (Ha’aretz, March 30)

CANADIAN MUSLIM PREACHER BARRED­(Toronto) The Australian government has barred a radical Canadian Muslim preacher from entering the country, citing national security concerns. Sheikh Abu Ameenah Bilal Phillips, who was Dennis Phillips before his conversion, was to speak at an Islamic conference in Melbourne this weekend, but Immigration Minister Kevin Andrews told Australian news media yesterday that the Jamaican-born Canadian would not be getting a visa. On Phillips’ Web site, he supports beheading, calls polygamy a “male right,” says homosexuality is “evil” and writes that “if women, children or the elderly bear arms they may be killed in self-defense.” He also cites Muslim scripture to justify “physical jihad,” which he describes as taking up arms to defend Islam and the Muslim community from its enemies. (National Post, April 5)

QUEBEC: ANTISEMITIC INCIDENTS HAVE INCREASED­(Toronto) Released last month, B’nai Brith Canada’s 2006 Audit of Antisemitic Incidents indicated that 935 incidents were reported in 2006, the highest figure ever recorded in the history of the Audit, an increase of 12.8 per cent from 2005. The majority of reported incidents of antisemitism in Canada consistently occur in Ontario. In 2006, 60.9 per cent of the year’s total for all the country occurred there. The 226 incidents reported in Quebec represented 24.2 per cent of the total incidents recorded across Canada. Quebec incidents increased dramatically by 69.9 per cent in 2006 compared to the 133 cases in 2005. (The League for Human Rights of B’nai Brith Canada’s 2006 Audit of Antisemitic incidents, March 21)