B’nai Brith Canada is calling on the Ontario College of Teachers (OCT) to remove a teacher from a Mississauga, Ont., classroom because of her continued support for two Middle Eastern terrorists.
In a Sept. 13 complaint to the OCT, which licenses Ontario teachers, B’nai Brith stated that Nadia Shoufani recently wrote an article in the Arabic-language newspaper al-Meshwar, saying she would “not stop quoting the words of Ghassan Kanafani,” and “will not stop demanding freedom for Georges Ibrahim Abdallah.”
That came after she was recorded supporting the two terrorists at the July 2016 Al-Quds Day rally in Toronto. At the time, Shoufani called Kanafani a “martyr,” and criticized Abdallah’s imprisonment.
Shoufani was temporarily suspended by St. Catherine of Siena Separate School, but was reinstated following arbitration.
The two men who are the subjects of her attention are linked to terrorist attacks that targeted innocent civilians and diplomats.
Kanafani, a Palestinian author, was the spokesman for the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP), and was considered PFLP leader George Habash’s right-hand man. Canada has designated the PFLP a terrorist organization.
Kanafani was photographed in PFLP offices with the Japanese terrorists who attacked Israel’s Lod Airport in May 1972 and according to Stewart Steven, author of Spymasters of Israel, “had helped plan the killings.” Twenty-six people were killed and 80 were wounded in the attack.
‘It’s hardly surprising that Shoufani would continue to support terror leaders, given that there were no consequences for her initial comments’
Kanafani was killed by a car bomb in July 1972, in an attack attributed to Israel.
Abdallah, meanwhile, is imprisoned in France for the murder and attempted murder of Israeli and American diplomats.
According to France 24, Abdallah is the former leader of the Lebanese Armed Revolutionary Factions. In 1987, he was sentenced to life in prison for his involvement in the 1982 murders of U.S. military attaché Charles Ray and Israeli diplomat Yakov Barsimentov in Paris, as well as in an assassination attempt on Robert Homme, an American consul in Strasbourg.
“It’s hardly surprising that Shoufani would continue to support terror leaders, given that there were no consequences for her initial comments,” said Michael Mostyn, CEO of B’nai Brith Canada. “By doubling down, she has demonstrated a pattern of unacceptable behaviour and we demand that the OCT and the Dufferin-Peel Catholic District School Board remove her from the classroom.”
Pointing to the OCT’s own guidelines, Mostyn said teachers can be sanctioned for “conduct unbecoming,” even if the activity occurred outside the classroom, as happened with white supremacist teacher Paul Fromm.
While there is no evidence that Shoufani has brought her views on the Middle East into the classroom, “given that Shoufani has now demonstrated a clear and defiant pattern of behaviour, we are indeed concerned that she will promote her views in the classroom as soon as she finds an opportunity to do so,” Mostyn stated.
The Centre for Israel and Jewish Affairs (CIJA) asked the school board to investigate Shoufani after her remarks at the Al-Quds Day rally, and has written again to the board, following her article in al-Meshwar, said Berl Nadler, chair of CIJA Toronto.
“We strongly believe that the board must take disciplinary action in this case to send the message to all Ontarians that people who publicly praise the murderous acts of convicted terrorists and cold-blooded murderers are not fit to teach Ontario’s students,” Nadler said in a statement.
Bruce Campbell, general manager of communications and community relations for the Dufferin-Peel Catholic District School Board, said “the matter remains within the jurisdiction of the Ontario College of Teachers.”
Responding to queries from The CJN, Olivia Yu, OCT’s senior communications officer, stated: “The College is aware of the most recent media coverage regarding Nadia Shoufani. We only comment publicly about a matter when it has been referred by our discipline committee for a public hearing. We never comment on matters at the investigation stage. We cannot comment further.”
Al-Meshwar has a problematic history. Jewish organizations were angry with the paper in 2015, when it published an article that labeled Judaism a terrorist religion and said that killing is ingrained in the Jewish faith. That came after a previous article praised the 2014 Har Nof synagogue massacre, in which four rabbis and a police officer were murdered.