‘Fight Back Fiercely’ – Silence about Racist Mayor Speaks of Zionist Immorality

Jeremy Levi, the mayor of a Montreal suburb. (Image: Palestine Chronicle)

By Yves Engler

A racist religious zealot, Levi is also deeply authoritarian. For months he has been pushing to repress all manner of protest against Israel’s genocide.

An openly racist authoritarian, clamoring to kill more Palestinians, leads Canada’s most Jewish municipality. Yet few pro-Israel voices criticize the genocidal fascist’s offensive statements.

Hampstead mayor Jeremy Levi, top politician in the Montreal suburb of 7,500, recently bemoaned Muslims praying at McGill and posted an anti-Sikh, anti-Muslim and anti-Palestinian National Post article headlined “Just ignore Sarah Jama’s keffiyeh. Next she’ll be wearing a turban”.

He also posted an article about Republican senators calling Palestinian refugees a national security threat and previously made that argument in a controversial post noting, “Given the recent behavior of the pro-Palestinian group, Canada should reconsider its immigration plan for Gazans.

Their values seem incompatible with ours, and I have no desire to welcome more hatred into our country.” Replace “Palestinian” with “Jew” and it echoes the language that led to the ignoble rejection of European Jewish refugees in the lead up to World War II, as La Presse columnist Rima Elkouri recently highlighted.

While the mayor of a municipality that is 75 percent Jewish says besieged Palestinians refugees shouldn’t be allowed here because they are “incompatible” with “our” Canadian “values”, he believes God gave him Palestine. Despite 150-year-old family roots in Canada, Levi recently posted a statement by a Hampstead rabbi claiming, “The world is right, we are not simply indigenous to the Land; far beyond that. It is ordained and granted to us by God.”

A racist religious zealot, Levi is also deeply authoritarian. For months he has been pushing to repress all manner of protest against Israel’s genocide and in recent days has repeatedly demanded the state repress the student divestment encampment at McGill.

Levi posted to X, “It’s time for the university administration to urgently bring in the police and remove the protesters one by one with necessary force” and then demanded that “Montreal tactical teams should swiftly intervene at McGill, even if it requires force.”

In case there was any doubt about his aim Levi tweeted support for the police violently arresting US students in a post noting, “This is how woke garbage is handled in Florida under DeSantis.” In his post showing the violent arrest Levi labeled the police action “the proper way to deal with the misguided Hamas supporters. Use any means necessary and throw them out.”

Alongside his authoritarianism, Levi is genocidal. In December, he told me he supported Israel killing 100,000 or more Palestinian children because “good needs to prevail over evil”.

With 40,000 killed, 80,000 injured and a “full blown famine in northern Gaza”, Levi has repeatedly demanded a bloodbath on the border with Egypt where 1.3 million are cloistered, declaring that “Israel’s swift entry into Rafah is imperative.”

When Israel killed a Quebec aid worker last month he immediately came to its defence and after Iran responded to Israel’s attack on its consulate in Damascus he wrote, “Israel must respond swiftly and decisively. The world showed sympathy when Jewish blood was spilled on October 7th, but hate when we fight back. We cannot let the world dictate our ability to defend ourselves. Now is the time to fight back fiercely.”

Levi claims to be speaking on behalf of his “community”. In response to criticism of his anti-Palestinian refugees post, the Hampstead mayor told the Montreal Gazette “There are people that publicly agree and people that privately agree. What I put out, it’s nothing new. It’s what a lot of people in my community have been talking about for a long time.”

It is unclear how widespread this thinking is among the large Jewish populations in Hampstead and the adjacent Cote St. Luc. But what’s certain is there’s little criticism of Levi from the mainstream pro-Israel Jewish community.

I searched the X accounts of the Centre for Israel and Jewish Affairs, B’nai Brith, Friends of Simon Wiesenthal Center, Honest Reporting Canada, Montreal’s Jewish Federation, as well as the personal accounts of Anthony Housefather, Michael Levitt, Rabbi Reuben Poupko and Montreal Federation CEO Yair Szlak.

I couldn’t find any criticism of Levi even though Le DevoirLa Presse and the Montreal Gazette did stories on his recent refugee post and there was some coverage of his earlier comment to me about supporting the killing of 100,000 Palestinian children.

In fact, at least one prominent voice came (indirectly) to Levi’s defence. When liberal Montreal Gazette columnist Toula Drimonis criticized his recent anti-immigrant post on X the former head of B’nai Brith, Marvin Rotrand, challenged her for referencing the dehumanization of Jews in the 1930s. (Embarrassingly, Drimonis buckled in the face of pressure from the genocide lobbyist.)

Hampstead’s council appears supportive of Levi. In November they unanimously backed legislation criminalizing the removal of posters of hostages in Gaza and recently banned Palestine demonstrations within 100 meters of places of worship and schools.

A few weeks earlier, the council unanimously passed a motion demanding “the Council of Hampstead, hereby expresses its non-confidence in the Government of Canada for its distancing from the longstanding policy of support for Israel, which has resulted in a major spike in antisemitism across Canada; THAT the Town council calls upon the Government of Canada to reaffirm its commitment to supporting Israel and to take concrete actions to combat antisemitism in all its forms within our nation.”

As I detailed three weeks ago in “Pro-Israel municipality claims ‘discrimination’” Hampstead is an economically advantaged, ethnically segregated enclave that traces its roots to Britain’s late-1800s Garden City movement, which was a move by London’s elite to move out of the city centre. Just west of Montréal, Hampstead was established by some of the wealthiest Canadians in 1914.

The municipality doesn’t allow retail shops or industrial land in its boundaries and is one of the wealthiest municipalities in Québec. Until after the Second World War, it was almost entirely WASP (White Anglo-Saxon Protestant). Today over three-quarters of Hampstead’s 7,500 residents are Jewish and it is one be the most ethnically homogeneous areas in greater Montreal.

Hampstead is run by an openly racist authoritarian clamoring to kill more Palestinians and sadly, judging by a lack of criticism by its residents and the wider mainstream pro-Israel Jewish community, his anti-human morality enjoys significant support.

 – Yves Engler is the author of Canada and Israel: Building Apartheid and a number of other books. He contributed this article to The Palestine Chronicle. Visit his website: yvesengler.com.

(The Palestine Chronicle is a registered 501(c)3 organization, thus, all donations are tax deductible.)
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