“If you’re racist, the world should know,” is the slogan of a data-rich website called Canary Mission. It “documents people and groups that promote hatred of the USA, Israel and Jews on North American college campuses,” and “investigates hatred across the entire political spectrum, including the far right, far left and anti-Israel activists.”
Such as Andrew Kadi, who in 2013 wrote in the fiercely anti-Israeli website Electronic Intifada an op-ed titled “Why boycott can’t be limited only to Israeli occupation and settlements,” attacking Ha’aretz’s frothing-at-the-mouth anti-Zionist columnist Gideon Levy for supporting only selective boycott actions, limited to the settlements.
According to the Forward, last December, Andrew Kadi flew to Israel to visit his mother, and was pulled aside by Israeli security officials for three interrogation sessions, during which they used information pulled out of his Canary Mission profile.
As Edwin Black put it, back in 2016, “The profiled individuals span a gamut of track records ranging from those with leadership roles with such intensely anti-Israel groups as Students for Justice in Palestine and the Muslim Student Association to unaffiliated campus agitators who regularly advocate for the destruction of Israel and even the murder of Jews. All its profiles are compiled from public Internet sources such as social media, You Tube, Twitter, press releases, news clips, and interviews. In essence, Canary Mission flipped the card and blacklisted the blacklisters.”
Back in the summer of 2015, when an Arab family was burned alive in their home in Samaria, Israeli security forces rounded up dozens of rightwing youths who lived in the settlements, confined them to prison for outrageously long periods of time without seeing an attorney, and used isolation and physical torture against some of them. At the time, the left justified this brutal behavior as what a democracy must do to defend itself.
Welcome to the club, then. Openly listing the enemies of the Jewish democracy of Israel is what said democracy must do to defend itself against thousands of well-funded enemies in the West, most notably on the west coast of the US.
Which is why, as the Forward revealed on Wednesday, a major donor to Canary Mission is a foundation controlled by the Jewish Community Federation of San Francisco—a major Jewish charity with an annual budget of over $100 million. As the Forward puts it, in a victoriously accusatory tone, “The federation’s support of Canary Mission connects the American Jewish establishment itself to [the] website.”
According to the Forward, about two years ago, the Helen Diller Family Foundation donated $100,000 to Canary Mission. via a New York-based charity that serves as a conduit for US tax-exempt donations, listing the recipient as “Canary Mission for Megamot Shalom (Heb: peaceful purposes),” an Israeli charity.
Under pressure from the left, on Wednesday the Jewish Community Federation of San Francisco issued a statement saying “both the Helen Diller Family Foundation and the Federation will not support the Canary Mission in the future.” But we don’t doubt that this useful defense operation will not be slowed down over the loss of $100,000.
IfNotNow, a left-wing anti-Zionist group that poisons young Jewish American minds in summer camps and on Birthright trips to Israel, accused the San Francisco federation of “going against a core value of the Jewish tradition: asking questions and open debate,” typically mixing methodology with values, and understanding neither (the value is understanding God’s law, the method is relentless debate. Questions by themselves are not a value, they are raging, adolescent noise).
Esther Tsvayg, an Anthropology student at Stanford University, whose Canary Mission profile says she has expressed support for terrorists and spread hatred of Israel on social media, as member of the extremely anti-Zionist Jewish Voice for Peace (JVP), the anti-Semitic Students for Justice in Palestine (SJP), and the indecent #returnthebirthright initiative, told the Forward: “It feels pretty awful and I really wish I wasn’t on that website.” Now that’s a shoe-on-the-other-foot story if we’ve ever read one.
The Forward report reluctantly admits that “some of what Canary Mission captures is genuinely troubling, including anti-Semitic social media posts by college students.” They also point to errors on the part of the website, which may stem from a failure to research filed claims, or from a difference between the way the profiled subject and the reporting individual perceived the content at hand.
According to the Forward, Columbia University Law School professor Katherine Franke is “80% sure” her Canary Mission profile was what an Israeli border control officer showed her before informing her she is banned from Israel forever. A member of the toxic JVP, Franke will be limited to advocating against the Jewish State outside the Jewish State.
As the prophet Isaiah predicted in his promise of the coming redemption, “Your destroyers and obliterators will go out of you” (Isaiah 49:17).