Sunday, June 15, 2008

Apologies and parks

Uri Avnery's reflections (I can't access the Gush Shalom link) on the Canadian apology to its aboriginals, illustrated with a photo of trees planted by the Jewish National Fund on land taken by Israel in 1948 during the Nakba, might have gone further and referred to the fact that Canadian taxpayers have effectively paid for another park built over destroyed Palestinian villages, this time villages destroyed as recently as June 1967. That park, called, to Canada's great shame, 'Canada Park', was built and is maintained by the Jewish National Fund, a registered charity in Canada. Donations to the Fund are tax deductible, making the park partly funded by Canadian taxpayers. Since the Fund clearly engages in partisan political acts (most of which would be illegal if conducted in Canada), it is not eligible to be a registered charity, but political considerations, by which I mean the malign power of the Lobby in Canada, mean that this outrage continues. The tax status of the fund should be revoked, and all deductions disallowed retroactively. Canada should also apologize to the Palestinian people for aiding and abetting the ongoing crimes of the Jewish National Fund.