May 28, 2021
WINNIPEG – B’nai Brith Canada is seeking hate-crimes charges and a political response to a video showing protesters in Winnipeg playing an antisemitic song composed by a band linked to the Hamas terrorist group.
On May 15, hundreds of people joined an anti-Israel protest outside the Manitoba Legislative Building in central Winnipeg. The event was held in blatant violation of the province’s public health orders at the time, which limited outdoor gatherings to a maximum of five people.
In one video, the crowd is seen dancing and cheering to an Arabic song being played through a speaker set. The song contains antisemitic lyrics such as “Get lost, you son of a Jew!” It also asserts that Jews have “no rights here,” and that they will “get nothing on this land but gunpowder.”
In another video, protesters are seen chanting in favour of the Hamas terrorist group, which recently encouraged its followers to “cut off the heads of the Jews with knives.” Indeed, the song played by the Winnipeg anti-Israel demonstrators was composed by Fariq al-Wafa’, a Gaza-based group composed of Hamas terrorists released by Israel in 2012 as part of a prisoner swap.
B’nai Brith has reported these matters to the Winnipeg Police Service.
“It is unacceptable that anti-Jewish taunts and support for a banned terrorist group be expressed outside the Manitoba Legislature,” said Michael Mostyn, Chief Executive Officer of B’nai Brith Canada. “The organizers of this protest must face consequences for the hateful atmosphere that they created.
“It is also critical for elected officials to condemn the antisemitic hatred being generated by the anti-Israel movement in Winnipeg.”
At the same May 15 rally, the organizer of a pro-Israel counter-protest, Ron East, was called the n-word by a pro-Palestinian protester, who also spat on his Israeli flag, sparking a physical confrontation.
Jewish attendees also reported that rocks, water bottles and spent smoke bombs were thrown at them from the anti-Israel side. This mirrors events in Montreal, where a pro-Israel rally – permitted under Quebec’s public health orders – was disrupted by an anti-Israel mob using stones and teargas.
B’nai Brith encourages members of the community suffering from antisemitism to contact [email protected] for incidents involving violence, vandalism or harassment in the “real world,” or [email protected] for incidents occurring online. You can also contact us on Facebook or Twitter.
If it’s a criminal matter, please call police first, then contact us at 1-800-892-2624.