Michael Riordon

the view from where I live

24. URGENT ACTION: Canadian boat to Gaza under threat

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A week ago I wrote about the Tahrir (“liberation”), the Canadian boat to Gaza, which is due to join the 15-boat international aid and solidarity flotilla to Gaza later this month.

Cherna Rosenberg wants to sink the Tahrir.  So do the governments of Israel and Canada.  They are determined to maintain the suffocating isolation of 1.5 million Palestinians forced to live for years under Israel’s inhumane and illegal blockade of Gaza.

Ms Rosenberg, who divides her time between Israel and Canada, filed a suit June 2 in the Ontario Superior Court of Justice in Toronto, against the Canadian Boat to Gaza and its partner organization Alternatives International, a network of social & political movements struggling for social/economic justice and peace.

Claiming that Hamas, the elected government of Gaza, is a “terrorist organization,” Rosenberg’s New York and Toronto lawyers have demanded an interim and permanent injunction to prohibit either the Canadian Boat to Gaza or Alternatives International “from continuing to raise funds, purchasing equipment or supplies, and purchasing or renting a vessel for the purpose of delivering goods or funds to the Gaza Strip.”

In stark and courageous contrast, federal New Democrat Member of Parliament Alex Atamanenko has taken a conscientious decision to support the Canadian Boat to Gaza.

On June 7, true to form, the right-wing National Post ran a vicious smear article against both the Boat to Gaza and MP Alex Atamanenko.

Please write or call NDP leader Jack Layton, MP Paul Dewar (NDP foreign affairs critic) and other members of the NDP caucus NOW.  Assuming that you support the Canadian Boat to Gaza, tell them you want them to support it too.

Time is short.  Pressure to sink the Canadian boat is intense.  This is a struggle between powerful elites and people who care about peace and justice.  The NDP needs to hear from us.

MP contact information (both in Ottawa and in their ridings) can be found here.

Jack Layton: Layton.J@parl.gc.ca.  416-405-8914 begin_of_the_skype_highlighting            416-405-8914      end_of_the_skype_highlighting

Paul Dewar: Dewar.P@parl.gc.ca  613-946-8682 begin_of_the_skype_highlighting            613-946-8682      end_of_the_skype_highlighting

Author: Michael Riordon

Canadian writer and documentary-maker Michael Riordon writes/ directs/produces books and articles, audio, video and film documentaries, plays for radio and stage. A primary goal of his work is to recover voices and stories of people who have been silenced or marginalized, written out of the official version: First Nations (aboriginal) youth, Mozambican farmers, inmates in Canadian prisons, traditional healers in Fiji, queer folk across Canada, Guatemalan labour activists. Michael also leads courses, workshops and seminars for community organizations, trade unions, schools, colleges and universities.

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