Who's afraid of BDS?

Saturday, October 17, 2015 - 23:00

The twin threats facing the movement to boycott Israel.

The growth of the worldwide movement to boycott Israel known as BDS has proven itself remarkably effective in many dimensions: it has marshaled concrete activism with practical action and along the way has generated interest from mainstream and built much needed momentum for Palestinian Solidarity.

Not surprisingly BDS is increasingly seen as a strategic threat by Israel's defenders who have launched a two-pronged attack against BDS. One approach, from nationalist right-wing Zionists has been to try to encourage "criminalising" BDS in various countries, including Canada. Another approach, from liberal Zionists, has been to try to "redefine" BDS as solely concerned an with the occupation (freedom), ignoring two of the other core demands (equality and justice) of the BDS movement.

A short presentation on the three core demands of the BDS movement and its impact thus far  will be followed by an audience discussion on the challenges faced by BDS from Israel's defenders.

About the Speaker
Peter Larson is the Chair of the National Education Committee on Israel/Palestine (NECIP).  His professional career included periods at the Public Policy Forum, the Conference Board of Canada, Le Droit, and with several Federal government departments and agencies. In addition he was well known as a syndicated columnist with the Southam Newspaper chain.

For the last 10 years, he has taken a particular interest in human rights issues in the Middle East, visiting Israel, Iran, Jordan, Egypt and the occupied Palestinian territories of the West Bank. He has also led many trips to Israel/Palestine for Canadians interested in gaining a deeper understanding of the complex Israel/Palestine issue.

He is a frequent lecturer for church groups, retiree associations and service clubs. His presentations are appreciated for being fact based and balanced.

He was the founding Chair of the Middle East Study Group of the Canadian International Council (National Capital Region), and is also a board member of the National Council on Canada Arab Relations. In 2012, he was awarded The Queens Diamond Jubilee Medal by the Governor General of Canada in recognition of his educational work on Canada Arab relations.

Peter graduated in Economics from the University of Western Ontario in 1968.  He holds a Ph.D. in Political Economy from Université de Grenoble, France. In addition to English, he speaks fluent French and passable Italian and Spanish.

Need to know:
– Doors open at 6:50
– $5 donation (suggested minimum)
– Accessible on demand via portable ramp; washrooms not accessible
– Please avoid using strong-scented products due to sensitivities

Tasty refreshments (non-alcoholic) with Zatoun oliveoil+za'atar dipping.


Beit Zatoun
612 Markham St. (Bathurst subway)
Toronto , ON
43° 39' 11.6136" N, 79° 22' 59.4624" W
Ontario CA

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