It goes without saying we have seen absolutely outrageous and egregious behaviour by pro-Hamas demonstrators around the world since the October 7 terrorist attacks in Israel that killed more than 1,400 people.
At demonstrations, pro-Hamas supporters are quick to chant “from the river to the sea; Palestine will be free” (code for wiping Israel off the map). And in Sydney, Australia, chants of “gas the Jews” has erupted at protests. Now, that’s harsh – even for pro-terrorist supporters.
But consider what happened in Toronto last Saturday. Pro-Hamas demonstrators marched down University Avenue in a failed attempt to commandeer the Gardiner Expressway (come on, guys – don’t you think Hogtown traffic is hellacious enough on the best of days?) En route to the expressway, the mob surrounded Café Landwer and chanted: “boycott, boycott, boycott.” They also tried to intimidate the customers seated inside.
And what crime did this popular eatery commit? Well, it just so happens that the ownership is… Jewish!
Oh we can't have that! We can’t have Jews operating restaurants in Canada with what’s going on in the Middle East these days. I mean, surely there are limitations to the “diversity is our strength” mantra.
For the restaurant staffers and the diners within the café, this affront by the pro-Hamas thugs must’ve seemed surreal. Surely many were pinching themselves, asking if they were in 2023 Toronto or 1938 Berlin.
But what was almost as bad was the snail-like response of Toronto Mayor Olivia Chow when it came to condemning this hateful act. She took two days to issue a statement in which she condemned anti-Semitism – AND Islamophobia! Sorry to be a nitpicker here, but what sort of Islamophobia was on University Avenue on the weekend? The people spewing hate are supporters of Hamas. Hamas is the very definition of an Islamo-Nazi terrorist group. The question arises: has Mayor Chow lost her mind?
Then there was a statement from Ausma Malik, the city’s deputy mayor and the councillor for the ward Café Landwer is situated in. Malik condemned any and all hatred. Jolly good… yet, how genuine is the deputy mayor’s condemnation?
Consider a 2012 Toronto Sun story by Sue-Ann Levy who exposed that Malik seems to have a soft spot in her heart for terrorists:
During the heat of fighting between Israel and Hezbollah forces in Lebanon in July 2006, Ausma Malik was front and centre at a peace rally denouncing the conflict and Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s support of Israel’s right to defend itself against Hezbollah missile fire.
Pictures from that day show the Muslim woman, wearing a headscarf and attending the University of Toronto at the time, outside the U.S. Consulate, speaking beside Ali Mallah, a well-known pro-Palestinian, pro-Hamas activist and CUPE official. She also rebuked Harper, calling on him to get a “backbone” while those around her – sporting Lebanese flags and the yellow flag of the Hezbollah terrorist movement – chanted ‘shame’ and cheered jubilantly when word came that Hezbollah had killed another 22 IDF soldiers.
But more to the point, does anyone believe that this loathsome leopard has changed her spots vis-à-vis Hamas and Hezbollah? Don’t bet on it.
There is some good news, however. Which is to say, talk about the Barbra Streisand Effect! You see, not only has a boycott failed to gain any traction, but the restaurant appears to be busier than ever. The day we dropped by Café Landmer, every seat was taken as a lineup emerged for a free table.
Golly, it must be so dreadful being a member of Hamas or an “ally” of this loathsome group. After all, it seems the only thing these haters excel at is losing.