Indigo CEO accused of 'funding genocide' in latest antisemitic attack

A (brief) list of hate crimes in Canada in just the last two weeks as compiled by the National Post

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The Israel-Hamas War has touched off a wave of antisemitic acts in Canada, including, threats, intimidation, vandalism and violence.

Cities with higher Jewish populations, including Ottawa, Toronto and Montreal are reporting higher rates of hate crimes following the Oct. 7 attack.

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National Post is tabulating these incidents in a story that will be updated with the latest from social media and news reports.

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Nov. 10: Indigo CEO accused of ‘funding genocide’

Toronto — An Indigo bookstore near the intersection of Bay and Bloor streets was vandalized with red paint and posters of CEO Heather Reisman bearing the words “Funding Genocide.” Red paint is splattered across the window and the bookstore’s main entrance. Police say the city’s Hate Crime Unit is investigating the incident, which appeared sometime in the morning.

“It is absolutely appalling to see this targeting of an Indigo store and its Jewish founder and CEO in a vile antisemitic attack,” Michael Levitt, CEO and President of Friends of Simon Wiesenthal Center, said in a statement, calling it “a tragic, new reality for Jews today in Canada and around the world.”

Nov. 9: ‘That’s like drinking blood’

Toronto — A video posted on social media shows a man asking a barista at Cafe Landwer for a refund because the cafe is Israeli-owned and he supports Palestinians. “We don’t want to drink it, that’s like drinking blood,” he tells the worker.

Nov. 8: Hate crimes on the rise in Toronto

Toronto — Police Chief Myron Demkiw told a police services board meeting last month that since Oct. 7, there had been 14 hate crime reports — 12 relating to antisemitism and two about anti-Muslim incidents — compared to five during a similar time frame last year. Toronto police say the hate crime unit has grown from six officers to 20 investigators and eight district special constables.

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Nov. 7: Two Montreal schools shot

bullet holes jewish school
Two bullet holes in the left doorframe are seen at the Yeshiva Gedolah school on Thursday, Nov. 9, 2023 in Montreal. Photo by Ryan Remiorz /The Canadian Press

Montreal — Staff members at two schools in the city’s Cote-des-Neiges neighbourhood discovered bullet holes on the exterior of the buildings when they arrived Thursday morning, police said, adding that nobody was inside at the time of the shootings.

“Our community has 250 years of history in Quebec. We are proud, we are Quebecers, we’re not going anywhere. This attempted campaign of terror against us will not succeed.”

Nov. 5: Two firebombings in Montreal

Montreal — During the night between Monday and Tuesday, two firebombings in the Montreal suburb of Dollard-des-Ormeaux caused minor damage to the front door of a synagogue and the back door of the nearby Federation CJA office. The city’s Jewish leaders have also denounced antisemitic social media posts that they say are rampant.

Police recorded 38 reports of hate crimes and other incidents targeting the Montreal Jewish community between Oct. 7 and Oct. 25.

Nov. 2: Man posting hostage photos assaulted, police say

Toronto — Police say Omar Elkhodary, 32, assaulted a man putting up posters of hostages taken by Hamas following a verbal dispute. Elkhodary allegedly tore down the posters and assaulted the man after he stepped in the way. He has been charged with assault.

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Oct. 28: Jewish woman says she was attacked at pro-Palestinian demonstration

Goldberg said she was holding a sign of Mia Schem when she was atttacked. Photo by Courtesy of Olga Goldberg

Toronto — Olga Goldberg says she was punched in the face by pro-Palestinian protesters while standing on the other side of the street of a march. Goldberg says she was holding a printout including a photo of Mia Schem, who was kidnapped during the surprise attack on Oct 7.

Oct. 24: Hate crimes increase in Ottawa

Ottawa —  Ottawa Police Service saw 29 “hate-motivated” reports between Oct. 7 and Oct. 23, according to Ottawa Citizen. A majority were linked to the war while 24 were criminal in nature, the police said. The incidents included a “vile anti-Jewish message spray painted on a road and a swastika stuck in a mailbox of a house” and “feces smeared across the front doors of a mosque,” the newspaper reported.

Additional reporting from Canadian Press

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