EHAB LOTAYEF, ALI MALLAH, KHALED MOUAMMAR, ISMAIL ZAYID.
an article in the weekend Saturday
Star, former justice minister Irwin Cotler
challenged the idea that
Some people may want to understand "even-handedness" as standing idle and not taking a position, as being passive. Not us. We understand it as taking sides but basing our decision on justice and international law, not on the strength of supporting lobbies.
This brings us directly to
the "principle" listed by former justice minister Irwin Cotler in his weekend article in the Saturday Star.
Why should the well-being of
If we follow the UN resolutions on the Middle East from 1947 to the present (not pick and choose from them like Cotler did, naming some resolutions and ignoring others, or choosing parts of one resolution and ignoring the rest of it) we will find that no country stands in violation of so many UN resolutions as Israel.
UN resolution 194 calls for
the right of return of Palestinian refugees. Not one refugee has been allowed
to return since 1948. UN resolution 242 calls for Israeli withdrawal from the
lands it occupied in the 1967 war; Cotler chooses to
write only that this resolution calls for the right of all states in the
Not only does
Cotler also mentions the two-state solution while ignoring
the fact that
Settlement expansions in the West Bank coupled with declarations by politicians across the Israeli political spectrum that some/most/all of those settlements and the "occupied" lands on which they stand will never be given away show clearly that Israel will not allow a Palestinian state to ever exist.
Add to this the separation wall that is cutting through the West Bank, annexing huge chunks of it, and any objective observer can see who does not, and will not, allow a two-state solution.
When the UN General Assembly
voted overwhelmingly to demand
Hezbollah, which is considered a terrorist organization in Canada (a decision some Canadians want revisited and the vast majority of countries, including NATO members, do not concur with), did not even come close to the shocking ratio of civilian-to-combatant casualties Israel inflicted on the Lebanese population.
Last, but not least, the
targeted assassinations and the kidnappings from both
These kidnappings are the
reasons for the latest conflict. Both Hamas and
Hezbollah captured Israeli soldiers to negotiate the freedom of their prisoners
kidnapped and held by
We do not want a passive,
meaningless Canadian foreign policy regarding the
We want a Canadian foreign policy that stands firmly in support of international law and the right of all people for self-determination and justice.
Ehab Lotayef is vice-president of communications, Parole Arabe, a grassroots organization for Arab Canadians based