Monday, April 07, 2008

Great White Banana Republic

On the weekend, I was at Kensington Market and there was a man in the middle of the market literally screaming at the top of his lungs about Canada’s noble tradition of granting asylum to War Resisters and trying to collect signatures to protest the deportation of American army deserters.

The irony of being known as a ‘war resister’ after signing up for a hitch in the US military seemed lost on this man. Almost all of us gave him a wide berth and a cold shoulder. Truth is, most people who live downtown are rather use to screamers. Some days, it’s like the screaming never stops.

Anyway, I read this article in Ha’aretz:
Rabbi Elior Chen, the spiritual authority behind a group accused of systematically abusing children in a Jerusalem family, has fled to Canada with one of his supporters, Haaretz has learned.
So why did the Rabbi Chen choose Canada? Because of our international reputation:
Police said they do not know the location of Chen's and Fisher's families, but Chen's friend said they were hoping to go to Canada as well and may have already left the country. Chen and his supporters chose Canada in part, the source said, because "the extradition law is tough" there. "Only in very exceptional cases does Canada extradite," he said.

And the best we can do in Canada - is hope Rabbi Chen qualifies as an “exceptional’ case.

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