Extra! Extra! The Gazette Supports Israeli Aggression in Lebanon and Palestine!

Anonyme, Mercredi, Août 16, 2006 - 17:38

Block the Empire

--->To view photos from this demonstration, visit:

Montreal, August 15, 2006 – On the morning of Tuesday, August 15, approximately 30 activists from Montreal entered the lobby of the Gazette’s downtown office to begin a demonstration. Being the same day that a certain American war criminal was due to speak at a conference in Montreal, the demonstrators were determined to send a message to the staff of the Gazette that this would not be normal work day.

Before the security guards noticed what was happening, people began placing mock corpses and photos of murdered Lebanese civilians at the bottom of the main escalators leading to the Gazette offices. Meanwhile, a large banner was unfurled outside just under the Gazette’s proud company logo, which read "War Propaganda".

The demonstration in the lobby was a surprise action that caught the
security guards and employees off guard. The group started by loudly explaining their presence in the building. They were there to denounce the Gazette as being propaganda for the Israeli war machine. The Gazette was a platinum sponsor of an event held that same evening by the Jewish National Fund (JNF) entitled "Building a Stronger Israel". The JNF is an international organization with charitable status in Canada. They exist to buy up stolen land in Palestine and develop it for the use of Jewish people only.

After over a month of intense Israeli attacks in Lebanon and the Gaza Strip, which has seen the deaths of thousands of innocent civilians, demonstrators voiced their rage at the cruel and offensive title of this event. While Israeli bombs have been raining down on the Lebanese and Palestinian people, we should be talking about "building a stronger resistance towards Israel".

To add insult to injury, the JNF’s keynote speaker was none other than former US Secretary of State, Colin Powell. Powell is well known to people throughout the world not as a diplomat or a "dove", but as a war criminal. He played an important role in the 2003 US-led invasion of Iraq, which has caused the death of over 100 000 Iraqi people from 2003 to present.

With chants of "Israel assassin, Gazette complice!" and "Gazionist you can’t hide, you’re supporting apartheid!" demonstrators aimed to expose the evil trio that the USA, the JNF, and the Gazette represent. The JNF grabs land in Palestine for ‘Jews only’, the USA supports Israel’s apartheid policies to the tune of billions of dollars per year, and war media like the Gazette make it all palatable citizens of Western countries.

Demonstrators challenged the role of the Gazette as "objective media", stating that their support for the JNF’s event with Colin Powell clearly shows their pro-Israel bias. They also called on journalists and staff at
the Gazette to challenge their employer’s support for the JNF and Israeli war crimes.

Overall, the demonstration was a large success. The assembly of gruesome photos, fake dead bodies, and chanting demonstrators proved to be quite the nuisance for staff of the Gazette, as they were forced to take an alternate entrance to work that day.

Outside, pedestrians on Ste-Catherine street were handed flyers, and encouraged to boycott the Gazette, cancel their subscriptions, or even use the newspaper as a household cleaning rag.

Despite all sides of the conflict agreeing to a ceasefire on Sunday, many Montrealers are still enraged with the state of Israel and its supporters such as Colin Powell and Canadian PM Stephen Harper. Thousands of Israeli soldiers are now occupying parts of southern Lebanon, and they are waiting for the arrival of thousands more from foreign countries. Furthermore, the ceasefire will not bring back the destroyed infrastructure, homes, or lives of over one thousand Lebanese women, men, and children.

The demonstration was organized by Block the Empire, a Montreal-based anti-war campaign which targets local war profiteering companies. On this day, the Gazette was no exception.

After picketing inside and outside the building for over an hour, the demonstrators dispersed, but not before vowing that if the Gazette continues to support war criminals in Montreal, further action would be taken.


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