Toronto man assaulted in broad daylight for being Jewish

Man walking his dog in Midtown area was shoved into fence by passerby who yelled anti-Israel invective at him after he fell to the ground.

Dan Verbin ,

Toronto
Toronto
iStock

A Toronto Jewish man walking his dog near his home was the victim of an anti-Semitic attack on Wednesday morning.

According to B’nai Brith Canada, Sam Brody, who was wearing a kippah, was walking his dog in the Midtown area of Toronto. A man passing by in the opposite direction accosted Brody, pushing him into a wooden fence. He was knocked to the ground. The man yelled: “F**k you, you Jew – you’ll never take Israel, free Palestine!”

“Unfortunately, in this day and age there is a big problem with anti-Semitism and I experienced it firsthand this morning,” said Brody in a video he posted to Facebook.

“I’m incredibly shook up from this incident. The reason I’m making this video is to show those who aren’t aware that anti-Semitism is a very real and growing problem in our country and around the world, and unfortunately people use Israel as a platform to attack Jews. Being anti-Israel is the politically correct way of being an anti-Semite today,” he said.

“We should hope for a future where this doesn’t happen to anyone,” he added.

The assault was reported to the Toronto Police Service, with B’nai Brith advocating directly with police in the case on behalf of the Jewish community.

“Wednesday’s attack is the latest in a string of anti-Jewish violent episodes ostensibly motivated by anti-Israel sentiment,” said B’nai Brith CEO Michael Mostyn. “As we pointed out at the recent National Summit on Antisemitism, Jew-hatred disguised as anti-Zionism is a serious threat to the Canadian Jewish community.”

B'nai Brith noted that “this brazen assault comes amid an unprecedented surge of physical attacks on Canadian Jews.” With many of the incidents involving Jews being attacked due to identification with Israel, they are calling on “Canadian jurisdictions and institutions – cities, provinces and universities – to adopt and implement the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA) Definition of Anti-Semitism, in order to stop hate in its tracks.”

In May, during the fighting between Israel and Hamas, B’nai Brith recorded 61 incidents of anti-Semitic attacks in Canada – many in Toronto, Winnipeg and Montreal – the highest number since it began keeping records in 1982.

In April, the Toronto Police Service and the Regional Municipality of York Police Services Board released their annual hate crime reports which found that in 2020, reported hate crimes in Toronto increased by more than 50%, while reported hate crimes in York Region increased by 20%.

In Toronto, the Jewish community, constituting a tiny fraction of the city's population, remained the most frequently-targeted group for hate crimes.



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