"Without this context and in the absence of Canada advocating more strongly for a truce or ceasefire, the Canadian government is leaving Canadians and Palestinians in Gaza in a life threatening situation."
Dear Ms. Baig, Ms. Owens and Mr. Cook,
I’m writing on behalf of Canadians and Justice for Peace in the Middle East (CJPME, https://www.cjpme.org to express concern about the article, which was published by the Toronto Star on November 1, 2023.
The questions that came to mind as I read your article was “Why did Canada wait so long to begin evacuating Canadian Palestinan citizens from Gaza as compared to Jewish Canadians in Israel? Why isn’t Canada using its political ties with Israel to allow the safe evacuation of Canadian citizens, ensuring they are not harmed as they seek to evacuate? Your article would have been strengthened if you had asked those two questions of Foreign Affairs minister Melanie Joly or at the very least someone from Global Affairs Canada. November 1 is a far cry from October 12 when the first of Canadian citizens living in Israel were evacuated.
The second concern I have is related to the absence of any significant context around the humanitarian crisis, the siege, the challenge in evacuating Canadians from Gaza and the internet-connectivity issues. These issues did not occur in a vacuum. Israel has the responsibility for these challenges and also has the power to reduce or eliminate them. In the absence of naming Israel’s role you are leaving readers to make the connection as to where the power and responsibility lie.
Without this context and in the absence of Canada advocating more strongly for a truce or ceasefire, the Canadian government is leaving Canadians and Palestinians in Gaza in a life threatening situation. As Mr Shouman who was quoted in your article said, “History will indeed not forget what they are doing”. The ‘they’ in this situation can be applied to both Israel and Canada. What a sad legacy to be remembered for!
I expect that future articles would include better context and when needed, background information in order to better inform your readers.
Should you have any questions you are welcome to contact me at 250-469-4468.
Kelowna, British Columbia