The Camps Where Canada Kept Hundreds of Jews during World War II

Aug. 26 2020

When World War II began, Great Britain viewed aliens from enemy countries as suspicious, and sent many of them to internment camps in Australia or Canada. Included among them were many Jews born in Germany, Austria, and Italy, some of whom were refugees from the Nazis. Julie Masis writes:

Of the 2,284 Jewish men and boys who were held in Canadian camps—the British never arrested the women—966 were eventually allowed to remain in the country, according to Paula Draper, a historian who wrote her dissertation on the Canadian internment camps for German, Austrian, and Italian Jews during the war.

Interestingly, many prisoners went on to become extremely successful. Walter Kohn and Max Perutz received Nobel prizes in chemistry. Walter Homburger became the director of the Toronto Symphony Orchestra. Freddy Grant (né Fritz Grundland) was a jazz pianist who, while imprisoned, wrote a song with the lyrics, “You can scream and you can shout, they’ll never let you out.” It became a popular hit in Canada during the war, called “You’ll Get Used to It.”

“They were kept interned because the Canadian government knew they were Jews and didn’t want them in the country,” [Draper] said.

In Camp N in Sherbrooke, [Quebec], the men were housed in an old train repair yard. It was cold. There was one water faucet for roughly 900 people, and only nine toilets. The men wore uniforms with a big circle on the back that looked like a target. There was barbed wire and watch towers. One prisoner lost his nerve and ran for the fence. The guards shot him.

Read more at Times of Israel

More about: Anti-Semitism, Canada, Canadian Jewry, United Kingdom, World War II

Iran’s Four-Decade Strategy to Envelope Israel in Terror

Yesterday, the head of the Shin Bet—Israel’s internal security service—was in Washington meeting with officials from the State Department, CIA, and the White House itself. Among the topics no doubt discussed are rising tensions with Iran and the possibility that the latter, in order to defend its nuclear program, will instruct its network of proxies in Gaza, the West Bank, Lebanon, Syria, and even Iraq and Yemen to attack the Jewish state. Oved Lobel explores the history of this network, which, he argues, predates Iran’s Islamic Revolution—when Shiite radicals in Lebanon coordinated with Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini’s movement in Iran:

An inextricably linked Iran-Syria-Palestinian axis has actually been in existence since the early 1970s, with Lebanon the geographical fulcrum of the relationship and Damascus serving as the primary operational headquarters. Lebanon, from the 1980s until 2005, was under the direct military control of Syria, which itself slowly transformed from an ally to a client of Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) following the collapse of the Soviet Union. The nexus among Damascus, Beirut, and the Palestinian territories should therefore always have been viewed as one front, both geographically and operationally. It’s clear that the multifront-war strategy was already in operation during the first intifada years, from 1987 to 1993.

[An] Iranian-organized conference in 1991, the first of many, . . . established the “Damascus 10”—an alliance of ten Palestinian factions that rejected any peace process with Israel. According to the former Hamas spokesperson and senior official Ibrahim Ghosheh, he spoke to then-Hizballah Secretary-General Abbas al-Musawi at the conference and coordinated Hizballah attacks from Lebanon in support of the intifada. Further important meetings between Hamas and the Iranian regime were held in 1999 and 2000, while the IRGC constantly met with its agents in Damascus to encourage coordinated attacks on Israel.

For some reason, Hizballah’s guerilla war against Israel in Lebanon in the 1980s and 1990s was, and often still is, viewed as a separate phenomenon from the first intifada, when they were in fact two fronts in the same battle.

Israel opted for a perilous unconditional withdrawal from Lebanon in May 2000, which Hamas’s Ghosheh asserts was a “direct factor” in precipitating the start of the second intifada later that same year.

Read more at Australia/Israel Review

More about: First intifada, Hizballah, Iran, Palestinian terror, Second Intifada