Who Calls the Shots? An inquiry into the effect of Jewish and Arab lobbies on Canadian Middle East policy

By Brent Sasley

Literary Review of Canada, May 2011

In their advocacy work, both Arab and Jewish communities refer to Canadian values and interests; they argue that their preferences fit with Canadian identity. Canadian Jewish groups assert that Canadian values such as democracy and negotiation should encourage policies more favorable to Israel, and that Canadian identity naturally predisposes a closer relationship with the Middle East’s only genuine democracy. The Canadian Arab community argues that Canadian values such as the rule of law and human rights should prompt a more critical policy toward Israel: that Israel’s treatment of the Palestinians precludes a close Canada-Israel relationship.

The notion that any ethnic community should be suspect because it maintains a connection to kin in an ancestral homeland at the expense of loyalty to Canada ignores the fact that these communities do not see a clash between their dual identities. Indeed, of all the Jewish and Arab community leaders I have interviewed in four years of research, not one indicated a preference for being Jewish or Arab over Canadian, and when they appeared distressed by the direction of Canadian policy, much of it was because they viewed it as weakening the specialness of Canada.

Topic: Political Behavior, Israeli-Palestinian Conflict, Policy, Advocacy, Politics, Values, Israel Advocacy, Identity, Hasbara

Name of Publication: Literary Review of Canada

Volume/Issue: May 2011

Preview: Download

It appears you do not have a PDF plugin installed for this browser. To be able to preview the PDF, please install a PDF reader such as Adobe Reader.

Genre: Article

Coverage: Canada , Middle East

Language: English

Copyright Holder: Author

Copyright Information: Download for personal use, freely distribute link

Bibliographic Information:
Sasley, Brent. Who Calls the Shots? An inquiry into the effect of Jewish and Arab lobbies on Canadian Middle East policy. Literary Review of Canada. Literary Review of Canada. May 2011: http://www.bjpa.org/Publications/details.cfm?PublicationID=11944


» View Publication
(PDF, 239 Kb)

Bookmark and Share