Shalom Life | April 21, 2014

Jewish Groups Condemn Quebec Protesters’ Nazi Salutes

Quebec student federation apologizes for use of the gesture

By: Sammy Hudes

Published: June 13th, 2012 in News » World

Jewish Groups Condemn Quebec Protesters’ Nazi Salutes

The university student federation of Quebec has issued an apology for the use of Nazi salutes by students during protests, after condemnation by multiple Jewish organizations, according to the CBC.

The gesture was used by many protesters this past week to mock Montreal police officers, who have also been referred to as the “SS,” “fascists” and have been compared to Nazi police for their alleged brutality. Swastikas have also appeared on pamphlets distributed by protesters to express their disapproval of the police.

The Centre for Israel and Jewish Affairs denounced the decision to use the gesture in the current anti-police context earlier this week, saying it speaks to a lack of historical understanding by the protesters.

B’nai Brith Canada said that while the gesture isn’t meant to promote Nazism itself, the behavior of the protesters is still unacceptable.

“We condemn, in the strongest of terms, this inexcusable display of hate by Quebec student protesters that has outraged the Jewish community and demonstrated just how low the level of public debate has fallen on the streets of Montreal,” said CEO Frank Dimant in a statement released Tuesday, which would have marked the 83rd birthday of Holocaust victim Anne Frank.

“The actions of these protesters, whether for the purposes of deriding Montreal police or drawing attention to their cause, defile the memory of the Holocaust and remind us just how quickly anti-Semitism and the manifestations of hate can venture their way into our public discourse.”

In an interview with the Canadian Press, Dimant reiterated that those actions insulted the memory of all who were affected by the Holocaust.

“It’s offensive to a wide range of Canadians including war veterans, Holocaust survivors, children of survivors and anyone who has a real understanding of what the Nazi era was all about,” said Dimant. “To equate the actions of police in Montreal to Nazis is totally inappropriate. I believe that they know they can get media attention with it. I don’t think they realize the pain and angst that they’re causing to people. It trivializes the entire Holocaust experience.”

Martine Desjardins, president of the student federation, said the salute doesn't “represent the values of Quebec and Canada,” in an apology issued by the federation later on Tuesday.

“We think it was an error in judgement that they used that sign,” she said.

What You Missed in the News: April 13 - 20 What You Missed in the News: April 13 - 20 TrendingA Children's Haggadah Made By Children [VIDEO] A Children's Haggadah Made By Children [VIDEO] TrendingItalian Politician Mocks Primo Levi Holocaust Poem Italian Politician Mocks Primo Levi Holocaust Poem Trending
 

What You Missed in the News: April 13 - 20

April 20, 2014 | By Daniel Koren
What You Missed in the News: April 13 - 20

Our Top Stories this week include our Passover Book Series, an interview with Jeremy Diamond, the best Bible films, and more

Read More

James Franco’s Ex-Manager Sued for Embezzling Money From the Actor

April 18, 2014 | By Sarah Bauder
James Franco’s Ex-Manager Sued for Embezzling Money From the Actor

James Levy is being sued by his former partners at James Levy Management

Read More

James Franco and Idina Menzel Set For Easter Bonnet Competition

April 18, 2014 | By Ashley Baylen
James Franco and Idina Menzel Set For Easter Bonnet Competition

Franco and Menzel join Bryan Cranston, Fran Drescher and others at the event benefitting AIDS.

Read More

Spielberg’s Latest Project: A Film About a Jew Who Becomes a Priest

April 18, 2014 | By Ashley Baylen
Spielberg’s Latest Project: A Film About a Jew Who Becomes a Priest

The 'Schindler's List' director joins 'The Kidnapping of Edgardo Mortara'

Read More

Jewish Top 10s: Bible Movies

April 18, 2014 | By Zak Edwards
Jewish Top 10s: Bible Movies

In honor of Passover, we look at some of the best feature films that reinterpret stories from the Bible

Read More

Emotional Pain Isn't Just in Your Head

April 18, 2014 | By Abigail Klein Leichman
Emotional Pain Isn't Just in Your Head

A new Israeli-US study provides breakthrough in understanding the brain mechanisms that cause physical pain resulting from depression

Read More

A Children's Haggadah Made By Children [VIDEO]

April 18, 2014 | By Ynet News
A Children's Haggadah Made By Children [VIDEO]

Created by students of Rav Elio Toaff nursery school in Rome, 'cheerful Haggadah' is specially made for other children, not only Jewish

Read More

Italian Politician Mocks Primo Levi Holocaust Poem

April 18, 2014 | By Graham Sigurdson
Italian Politician Mocks Primo Levi Holocaust Poem

Beppe Grillo, head of an anti-establishment movement, released the parody on his blog that Jewish activists have labelled an 'obscenity'

Read More

More Headlines