Who’s fundraising for ‘Global March to Jerusalem’ in Canada?

On March 17th a fundraising event for the Global March to Jerusalem was held in Hamilton, Ontario, featuring Eva Bartlett and Khawla Ibrahim.

Eva Bartlett is an International Solidarity Movement activist who was deported from Israel and disqualified from re-entry for ten years in early 2008 due to her not being in possession of a valid visa.

Bartlett has worked for Palestinian Center for Human Rights (PCHR) in Gaza and written for Electronic Intifada. She is married to Emad Badwan, a film-maker and journalist from Dir el Balah in Gaza. 

According to her blog (where, in her latest post, she perpetuates the myth that Israel was responsible for the death of Nayif Qarmout and writes of “25 martyrs” – most of whom were members of terrorist groups),  Bartlett apparently intends to join the Global March to Jerusalem in Lebanon.

“I will be joining the Global March to Jerusalem in Lebanon and staying on for some weeks after to write from Palestinian refugee camps and historically important places in Lebanon related to the Palestinian struggle.”

Khawla Ibrahim is an executive member of Hamilton Coalition to Stop the War and a member of the Palestinian Association of Hamilton, both of which are endorsers of the Global March to Jerusalem.  According to this petition which Ibrahim signed in 2010, she rejects negotiations as part of the peace process.

The fundraising event was organised by Wael Ghuneim – another member  (and president) of the Palestinian Association of Hamilton. Ghuneim is one of the GMJ organisers in Canada, together with Ali Mallah and Ken Stone, who put out this document on behalf of the three of them.  

Ghuneim, Ibrahim and Stone were all involved in the Canadian Boat to Gaza flotilla project in 2011, along with their associated organisations; the Hamilton Coalition to Stop the War, the Palestinian Association of Hamilton and Independent Jewish Voices (also a GMJ endorser), of which Stone is a member.  

Unsurprisingly, the apparently not defunct ‘Canadian Boat to Gaza’ website is now promoting the Global March to Jerusalem.

In his IJV capacity, Ken Stone signed the Stuttgart Declaration which rejects a negotiated two-state solution to the Arab-Israeli conflict.

In addition to having acted as treasurer for the flotilla project, Ken Stone is also a member of the steering committee for the Canadian Peace Alliance (an organisation which campaigns to have Hamas and Hizballah removed from the list of terrorist organisations in Canada and is yet another endorser of the GMJ) and in that capacity will be speaking at a conference in the United States on March 23rd-25th, where he will lecture on Iran, apparently representing the non-intervention viewpoint at a workshop entitled “Targeting Iran: The Truth Behind the Hype”.

A branch of the Canadian Peace Alliance previously promoted Eva Bartlett on a 2011 tour:  

“Through her photographs and videos Eva argues that Israel’s bombardment and incursions into Gaza are not against Hamas, stopping rockets from entering Israel, or achieving peace, but are part of a longer historical process of the destructive discrimination against Palestinians.” 

 

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Global March to Jerusalem connections of Independent Jewish Voices’ (Canada) Maxine Kaufman-Lacusta

The decision by the steering committee of the radical Canadian group ‘Independent Jewish Voices’ to endorse the Global March to Jerusalem, adopt and promote its Islamist rhetoric and send a representative to take part, prompts the question of just how independent they actually are.

Some insight into the political culture of the group can be gleaned from the fact that it promoted Caryl Churchill’s anti-Semitic play ‘7 Jewish Children’ in Canada, is active in the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement, campaigns against the Jewish National Fund and that whilst some of its members saw fit to occupy‘ the Israeli Consulate in Toronto during Operation Cast Lead, they were apparently entirely undisturbed by the firing of hundreds of rockets from Gaza at Israel’s civilian population in the years which preceded that operation.

The IJV Canada delegate to the Global March to Jerusalem – Maxine Kaufman-Lacusta – has some interesting connections of her own. Kaufman-Lacusta holds dual Canadian/Israeli nationality, having lived in Israel from 1988 to 1995.

She is a self-described ‘Quaker Jew’, a member of ‘Vancouver Women in Black’, a former International Solidarity Movement activist, a member of ‘Jews for a Just Peace – Vancouver’ and the BC chapter of IJV.

Kaufman-Lacusta has organized a series of speaking tours in North America for figures such as Jeff Halper of ICHAD and the ‘Free Gaza’ movement, Neta Golan and George N. Rishmawi of the ISM and Jonathan Kuttab of ‘Al Haq and ‘Sabeel.

From 1990 to 1994 Kaufman-Lacusta was employed by the Alternative Information Centre – known for its connections to the PFLP terror organization. Speaking at the ‘Right of Return’ conference in Haifa in 2008, the AIC’s director Michael Warschawski stated:

“In my opinion, the core of our discussions should not be about solutions and models, but values and rights. In that perspective, one has to unequivocally reject the very idea (and existence) of a Jewish state, whatever will be its borders.”

Unsuprisingly, Kaufman-Lacusta’s latest book includes contributions from Jeff Halper, Jonathan Kuttab and AIC and ISM co-founder Ghassan Andoni who, along with George Rishmawi, is also active in the ‘Palestinian Centre for Rapprochement’ (PCR).

With the International Solidarity Movement heavily involved in the organization of the ‘Global March to Jerusalem’, the Alternative Information Centre and Palestinian Centre for Rapprochement both listed as endorsing organisations and the PCR’s chairman Mazin Qumsiyeh listed among the original organisers, Maxine Kaufman-Lacusta’s willingness to endorse and participate in this publicity stunt can be seen as more of a case of helping out old friends than a decision involving any ‘independent’ thinking.