What’s the deal with dissent? Are mainstream Canadian Jews reconsidering their full-throated support for the Israeli war effort? 

Jerry Seinfeld at a military training camp outside of Efrat. (Facebook)
Jerry Seinfeld at the Caliber 3 anti-terror training camp outside of Efrat in January 2018. He returned to Israel for a solidarity visit in December 2023.

Last week, a video from the Toronto Eaton Centre depicted a heated exchange between an individual and one of about 150 pro-Palestinian protesters chanting slogans in front of the Zara clothing store. The clip shows police keeping apart the protestors and the person filming; trying to keep the situation calm in the midst of the bustling shopping season around them.

Meanwhile in Israel, the IDF announced the mistaken killing of three hostages who managed to escape captivity. The next night, families of hostages still held by Hamas and supporters rallied in Tel Aviv chanting the slogan ‘Now’. They meant that now is the moment to re-evaluate, to pause the violence and prioritize negotiations.

In the immediate aftermath of the Oct. 7 attack, many Jews and other Israel sympathizers felt the need to put aside political differences and unite behind the Israeli government. Two-and-a-half-months later, is that still the case? As pro-ceasefire protests step farther into public space at busy malls abroad, and Israelis call for a new approach to the war at home, do Canadian Jews feel permission to break ranks with the Israeli government? Bonjour Chai hosts Avi and Phoebe wrap up 2023 breaking down everything you have to know about the current moment.

Credits

Bonjour Chai is hosted by Avi Finegold and Phoebe Maltz Bovy. Zachary Kauffman is the producer and editor. Michael Fraiman is the executive producer. Our theme music is by Socalled. The show is a co-production from The Jewish Learning Lab and The CJN, and is distributed by The CJN Podcast Network. Support the show by subscribing to this podcast, donating to The CJN and subscribing to the podcast’s Substack.