Judy and I and our two sons have fought our entire lives against all forms of discrimination, racial and anti-Semitic. And we have paid for it. During one incarnation of the Ku Klux Klan in Toronto where we organized resistance, somebody broke into our apartment and painted anti-Jewish slogans on the walls. My bruises from confronting white supremacists have healed. But, even in my 70s, I am still willing to challenge hatred and bigotry wherever I find it. Disappointingly, several of the attacks have come from the institutional Jewish organizations that felt uncomfortable with our criticism of Israeli policies and actions.

Press release: “An EKOS survey commissioned by IJV Canada in 2018 shows that the Canadian Jewish community is significantly split on the issue of Israel and antisemitism. It reveals, for example, that 60% of Canadian Jews agree with the statement “Accusations of antisemitism are often used to silence legitimate criticism of Israeli government policies.”

This is the apology issued by Rana Zaman in June 2019, after comparing some actions of Israel against Palestinians to the actions of Nazi Germany during the Holocaust. For the Atlantic Jewish Council, the organization that pressured the Nova Scotia Human Rights Commission into rescinding Rana’s Human Rights award, the apology isn’t good enough. You be the judge.

“Rabbi Jonah Rank, who was associated with Halifax’s Shaar Shalom synagogue until recently, wrote an impassioned defence of Ms. Zaman to Human Rights Commission CEO Christine Hanson calling Zaman “a friend to the Jews, a courageous changemaker.” He cites Ms. Zaman’s efforts in establishing a peace-seeking group of Halifax Jewish and Muslim women called “Salaam-Shalom.” From a press release issued by Independent Jewish Voices, condemning the rescinding of Rana;s Human Rights Award.

Compensation awarded to the complainants in a human rights enquiry may sound generous, but it is peanuts when you take into account the decades the three were institutionalized, away from community and their loved ones, and subjected to a regime that allows almost no space for making your own decisions.