The University of Toronto’s student newspaper – The Varsity – has quite the history of peddling anti-Semitic tropes.
A select roster of the paper’s writers and editors must think recruiters from Al Jazeera or Haaretz are rigorously reading each of their pieces. Honestly, it’s a mystery how else a student paper at such a pristine university could produce such inane drivel – sorry leftists, you don’t get to just quote wild conspiracy theories with no substantial evidence.
In 2003, an article on The Varsity written by Hazem Jamjoum – who’s also written for the Electronic Intafada – a palpably anti-Israel outlet as laid out here or here.
In his Varsity article, Jamjoum writes,
The Palestinians under Israel have been dispossessed and brutalized. All people have the moral right to resist such oppression, just as the rest of us have the moral obligation to oppose it. The goal of campaigns like “More Humus, Less Hamas” (or “More Fried Chicken, Less Black Panthers”) is to vilify resistance to oppression by appealing to the “both sides” logic, and concealing the injustices committed by oppressors. From Jenin to Grassy Narrows, oppression must be resisted, and we must refuse any arguments that allow it to continue.
The author makes the case against campaigns attempting to bring about real, meaningful discussion on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict by suggesting that Hamas, a terrorist organization hell-bent on Jewish genocide, is a legitimate “resistance to oppression”.
In 2006, the Varsity newspaper published a piece titled “No Ma for Hamas”.
The author, Adrian Morson writes;
the Harper administration declared that Canada would cut funding to the new democratically elected Palestinian Authority. I emphasize “democratically elected” because it is crucial to remember that under incredible hardships-both domestic and international-the Palestinian people were out en masse to exercise their right to vote. And in return for this commitment to the democratic process, Canada was the first among the Western states to cut funding to the new Hamas-led Palestinian Authority.
No mention was made that Hamas’ sworn mission – as stated by their Covenant – is the destruction of Israel and the extermination of the Jews.
Morson continues writing,
Canada’s cessation of economic aid to the Palestinian government represents a blow to both Palestinian democracy and to Canada’s reputation within a region where it has historically been held in high regard. While our own government is also new, we should hope that its future policies for the region and beyond are based more on the values and interests of Canadians than on the appeasement of our more traditional allies.
The Varsity published paragon of anti-Semitism concludes by suggesting that the Canadian government’s refusal to subsidize the genocidal aspirations of Islamic zealots strikes a blow to our democracy.
In 2009, the Varsity published a piece written by Ahmed Mahmoud, titled “All in Self-Defense?”
Further fueling its mendacious movement against the Jewish state, Varsity columnist Mahmoud compares the Gaza Strip to concentration camps used by the Nazis to house Jews prior to exterminating them en masse.
As Gazans struggle to make ends meet in what is essentially the world’s largest concentration camp, the Israeli government, in its battle to shore up diminishing support for the upcoming election,
Conveniently omitting the documented fact that Hamas uses civilian human shields, specifically to maximize their casualties – thus indulging the exigencies of such leftist publications as the Varsity – Mahmoud continues, dismissing the targeting and murder of Israelis as “resistance to occupation”
Consider that Hamas’ rockets have killed 20 Israelis in the past seven years, while 5,000 Gazans were killed by Israeli jets, tanks, and helicopters during the same time frame. The issue is not the vast disparity in power, but that one side is the occupier and the other is the occupied. If you were dispossessed of your land and had to live under a foreign occupation for four decades, any action you took could be justified as retaliation to the occupation of your land.
In 2009, the Varsity published another piece by Samya Kullab, titled “Palestinians in Toronto enraged at Canada’s support for Israel’s war”.
Varsity writer Kullab writes,
The sequence of events following Dec. 27 2008 when Israel launched its ongoing offensive attack against Gaza, was predictable.
Oddly, the author fails to mention the actual cause of the Israeli operation – codename “Cast Lead”. The aim was to stop the incessant rocket fire into Israeli cities and smuggling of weapons into Gaza.
The author continues, writing;
Before the Israeli blockade made traveling to Gaza problematic, Hamman used to spend every summer there.
Again, omitting those pesky, narrative negating facts like perhaps the fact that the blockade – albeit a liability to the Gaza strip’s non-existent tourism industry – was established to stop Palestinian terrorists from blowing up Israeli buses.
In 2009, the Varsity published yet another piece by Ahmed Mahmoud titled “The Gaza War in Our Own Backyard”.
Varsity columnist, Mahmoud writes,
To make matters worse, two medics with the Norwegian aid agency NORWAC have recently charged Israel with using Gaza as a “test laboratory” for new “extremely nasty” chemical weapons such as Dense Inert Metal Explosives (DIME), which have a carcinogenic effect on people within its blast radius. This is precisely where the self-defense argument falls apart.
Ironically claiming that the Israel’s self-defense argument is bereft of vindication, the author actually cites Norwegian Dr. Mads Gilbert – a known 9/11 conspiracy theorist. His twisted fabrication of chemical weapons being used by the IDF has been discredited. However, the Varsity editorial board didn’t deem it appropriate to fact-check this villainous lie, given that it fits their narrative.
In 2012, the Varsity published a piece titled “Preserving free speech: Israeli Apartheid Week can’t be dismissed just because it’s controversial”.
Free speech however, is ostensibly only of importance to the campus leftists when necessary to drive an agenda.
As an example, when pickup artist and blogger, Daryush Valizadeh (Roosh V), was in Toronto for an event, the same student newspaper published a piece titled “Not in my city”, calling for his event to be shut down.
Going back to 2009, the Varsity has another piece titled, “Duplicity, hypocrisy, and blind acquiescence”. Here, the author decries a ban on vicious anti-Semite, British MP George Galloway, writing, “The ban on George Galloway is an affront to the most fundamental principles of Canadian democracy: openness and freedom of speech.”
True paradigms of free speech.
This year, in 2016, the Varsity put out their year-end interview with The University of Toronto president, Meric Gertler.
Amid the interview, there was one question on international affairs. As expected, this would be about boycotting – not Saudi Arabia, Iran, or the Palestinian Authority – Israel of course!
Interviewer Iris Robin asked,
TV: Do you currently have plans to strike an ad-hoc advisory committee — in a similar way that there was one for divestment [from fossil fuels] and one for sexual assault and harassment — do you plan to strike a similar committee for that, to consider boycott, divestment and sanctions against Israel?
In response, I tweeted that while portraying themselves as an objective student paper, the Varsity aggressively promulgates blatant anti-Israel propaganda.
The Varsity does indeed have a few articles presenting pro-Israel viewpoints – see here, here, here, here or here. Thus, the argument from the Varsity is presumably the following. Because the Varsity has published articles calling out Hamas as a tribe of anti-Semitic Muslim terrorists with genocidal aspirations, it’s totally fine for them to also publish editorials that compare Israelis to Nazis, or cite debunked claims of Israel using chemical weapons in Gaza.
If you’re wondering how exactly the leftist Labor Party in the UK has become such a cesspool of anti-Semitism, look no further than the leftist run high echelons of academia who foster the very same sentiments.
The Varsity has come back with yet another dose of Israel bashing. This time, the student paper penned a response to a University of Toronto news article, titled, “Parks, planning and public spaces: Toronto can learn lessons from Jerusalem say U of T students”.
As you can guess, the mention of “Jerusalem” sent the Varsity’s left-wing staff running wild in circles. Had the piece discussed “Mecca” (the Saudi Arabian city where homosexuality is illegal), they wouldn’t lift a finger.
But nevertheless, UofT News’s published piece had the gall to mention the Jewish capital without demonizing Israelis and calling them blood-thirsty oppressive murders. Not to worry, the Varsity stepped in to save the day! Writing,
“We write out of concern for the university media coverage of this course and the image it presents of Jerusalem. The article makes omissions that obscure the deeply unequal and contested nature of urban development in that city. Nowhere does the article address the well-documented demolition of Palestinian homes and expropriation of Palestinian lands that constitute the broader context for urban planning and development in Jerusalem, for instance.”
Um, yeah. They demolish the homes of terrorists. The Israeli government explained however, that they will refrain from destroying the homes of Palestinian families who turn in their would-be terrorist kin.
The left’s adoration for the Palestinian nationalist cause, and even lament for the destruction of terrorists’ houses, while at the same time virulently decrying Jewish nationalism and support for Israel as “racist”, throwing out “Zionist” as dirty word, is truly baffling.