Thursday, March 5th: Part 5: David McNally
University of Toronto
David McNally's IAW bio states:
"David McNally is Professor of Political Science at York University and author of four books, including Another World is Possible: Globalization and Anti-Capitalism. He is active with the New Socialists and the Popular Education and Action Project in Toronto."
He began his "Israeli Apartheid Week" lecture by railing against Michael Ignatieff who, he said, had "joined the chorus" of those who had spoken out against Israeli Apartheid Week. He said that Mr. Ignatieff is a professor and "a shoddy one in my view."
He was so angry at Mr. Ignatieff for "defending the crimes of Israel" that he read aloud from one of his own books in which he criticized Mr. Ignatieff.
I wrote, and I quote...A plug for his book or an onan-homage to his superior critiquing skills? One hand washes the other...
With that out of the way, Mr. McNally said the focus of his talk would be "globalization and social responsibility in the context of oppression, occupation and war and human rights violations against the Palestinians."
It didn't take long for Mr. McNally's socialist/communist leanings to become glaringly obvious. He talked about "relations of domination", "anti-capitalism" and "a high-tech war economy".
He said, "Canada is a thoroughgoing partner in the Israeli war machine... utterly complicit in the crimes, murders, human rights violations..."
Since 1977, Canada and Israel have had a free trade agreement, he said. (As if it were a bad thing.)
"Don't let anybody tell you that Canada is a peacemaker," he said.
He listed the following companies as being "completely tied into the Israeli war machine." He didn't explain how or why, he just rattled off their names.
Bell Canada (they make phones and provide email and internet service)
Air Canada (an airline)
Potash Corporation of Saskatchewan (they make fertilizer)
Nortel (Can someone translate their mission statement for me? They used to make phones.)
Bombardier (they make planes and trains)
Pratt & Whitney (they make engines for airplanes and other systems)
Frontline Robotics ("Autonomous Perimeter Security")
Diamond Aircraft (they make airplanes, too)
Virtual Defense Canada (I can't find this online)
Vanguard Response System (they make counter-terrorism equipment)
According to Mr. McNally, Vanguard Response System works closely with the Israeli police.
Their website says, "Allen-Vanguard Corporation is Canada’s first publicly traded company offering proprietary counter-terrorist equipment systems for defeating and mitigating conventional and unconventional terrorist devices of all kinds."
That sounds like a good company to me but not to David McNally! How dare they work with Israeli police to defeat terrorists!
I felt like writing each company a supportive email but what would I say? I might start with, "Hey, thanks for being part of the Canadian and Israeli war machine against terrorists!" but would they even know what I was talking about? I mean, a fertilizer company, for heaven's sake?
Mr. McNally continued to beat on his drum: "Canada is complicit in colonialism, occupation and war."
He then quoted Marx on capitalism, which forced me to break my pencil in two because I draw the line on quoting Marx. How many millions of people have been murdered, and how many more have lived terrible lives in hellholes, thanks to that communist's manifesto?
I cheered up when Mr. McNally said there are two main reasons why some people on the left are not convinced regarding the boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) movement against Israel.
First, they balk at the issue of academic freedom. Mr. McNally said the solution is to emphasize that they are boycotting institutions and to ask, "Where is the academic freedom on the Palestinian side?"
[To which I would respond: 1) You can't boycott an institution; and 2) the citizens of Gaza are not Israeli citizens, so their academic freedom is the responsibility of their elected government, headed by Hamas.]
Second, some leftists ask why Israel is being singled out for a boycott. Mr. McNally said it is not a question of ranking injustice but rather identifying where it exists and supporting calls for action.
[In other words, don't ask why we want to boycott only Israel: we're not being unfair, so just support the boycott for the sake of supporting the boycott, and stop asking questions.]
David McNally clearly holds a dim view of Canada and of capitalism. I think he would be happier living in a nice communist country such as... such as...
Wait, it'll come to me. In the meantime, perhaps he could move to Gaza; surely he would feel more comfortable living among friends. They could sit around a Palestinian work accident bonfire and read aloud from his books.
Up next: Leila Farsakh and the gender-and-race-equality-Q&A.