A protester holds a sign that reads "From Turtle Island to Palestine" at a rally in downtown Toronto on Oct. 9, 2023. (Andrew Chen/The Epoch Times)

By Using the 'Decolonization' Rubric, the Intelligentsia Are Disguising Terrorism as Heroism

Hamas’s Oct. 7 pogrom in southern Israel was motivated by exterminationist Jew hatred, but this terrorist arm of the Muslim Brotherhood is happy enough to have useful idiots in the West spin their atrocities as a form of political “resistance” in the service of “decolonization.”

Our intelligentsia’s fascination with the supreme evil of “settler colonialism”—Israel allegedly the world’s greatest offender, with the anglosphere not far behind—is based in the writing of Marxist psychologist Frantz Fanon, whose theories were guided by the 1950s Algerian colonists’ uprising against France. Their bible is Fanon’s 1961 book, “The Wretched of the Earth.” Fanon saw blood-letting as a necessary component of liberation: “The colonized man finds his freedom in and through violence,” he wrote.

Under the decolonization rubric, “any means necessary” is permitted for liberation, transforming terrorism into heroism. Moreover, settler guilt is not expunged in time. It is systemic and permanent. Thus, Canadians remain guilty of an ongoing genocide because the ancestors of (some) Canadians were settlers. Indigeneity is sacrosanct. Settlers who oppose the genocide narrative through evidence are openly disparaged as “deniers” (a Holocaust trope, inappropriately appropriated to amplify indigenous victimhood) by activists and their allies in political power.

Promotion of permanent victimhood of beatified indigenous people and permanent evil of white Canadians, with the only solution liberation through violence, is a recipe for civic disaster. In Canada we saw the fruits of that odious paradigm in the summer of 2021 when malcontents, driven by cultivated hatred of long-gone residential school Christian custodians—churned to a froth by media and political actors—vandalized or burned 68 churches. Justin Trudeau took the equivocal, morally exculpatory position that the acts were “unacceptable,” but the anger behind them “fully understandable.” (Last week, the Liberals and NDP struck down a motion to condemn over 80 incidents of arson and vandalism targeting churches across Canada.)
Thankfully, we have not yet seen the kind of revanchist violence that is common in the Middle East. But that could change if the Fanonists have their way. They support Palestinians’ relentless “free Palestine” campaign, including Hamas’s Oct. 7 proto-genocide, and they continually link the Palestinian cause to indigenous grievances in Canada.
The alleged correlation of indigenous Canadians and Palestinians emerges through three narrative strands. The first is conquest: the alleged theft of the land and the myriad crimes committed by white settlers/Jews; the second is alleged “cultural genocide”/Palestinian ethnic cleansing; and the latest strand is the decolonizing “Land Back” notion that both indigenous peoples here and Palestinians were once independent and sovereign, but were cheated of their rightful estate by wily white settlers/European Jews. Just as the Palestinians—uniquely amongst the many millions of refugees worldwide—were assigned the status of “refugees” in perpetuity, encouraging the fantasy that they will return in their millions to Israel, thus ensuring their hostility festers, so too are our indigenous peoples encouraged to consider themselves a stateless people in their ancient homeland.
In a recent column for the Macdonald-Laurier Institute (MLI) titled “Stop comparing Palestinians to Indigenous Canadians,” senior MLI fellow Chris Sankey, a former elected councillor for Lax Kw’alaams Band, cites a journal article, “Indigenous Intifadas and Resurgent Solidarity from Turtle Island to Palestine,” which links the Wet’suwet’en land sovereignty struggle to a series of Palestinian terror campaigns.

Sankey pushes back hard against the attempted parallel. “Seriously?” he writes. “Israelis have 3,000 years of history on that land. The State of Israel … is one of the greatest examples of indigenous reclamation in the world. … The Jews have been there long before the Arabs and Muslims. … The [Jews] are not colonizers nor are they occupiers. Canadian professors and academic support staff need to get their history right.”

Sankey’s assessment is spot on. If logic rather than ideology were guiding leftist intellectuals, they would encourage Canada’s indigenous peoples to sympathize with Jews as an indigenous people who returned from exile to their ancient homeland (where a small but stubborn Jewish presence suffered through multiple occupations, including by Arabs) and who, far from stealing land, either paid over-market money for it, or settled on inhospitable terrain nobody else wanted (which they made hospitable through sweat equity).
Anthropologist José Martínez Cobo, who served as the U.N.’s special rapporteur on discrimination against indigenous populations, fleshed out the parameters of what constitutes indigeneity in his final report to the U.N. in 1983. His long checklist includes historical, cultural, and linguistic ties to a certain defined piece of land considered sacred to a certain still-extant identity group over a long period of time. Suffice to say that while Canada’s indigenous peoples here, and the Jews in Israel, can tick every box on Cobo’s list, Palestinians—ethnically, culturally, and linguistically linked to Egypt, Syria, and Jordan—do not meet a single criterion for indigeneity in Israel.

Other responsible indigenous voices echoed Sankey’s concerns. A cross-Canada group of “First Nations leaders” sent a letter to Foreign Affairs minister Melanie Joly, urging the Trudeau government to distance themselves from any official coupling of the Hamas massacre with the theory of “decolonization.” The letter states: “As Indigenous Peoples in Canada, we fundamentally reject the politically motivated adoption of our historic and ongoing relationship with the Crown by some Canadians to justify these evil actions by terrorists.”
Karen Restoule, the only named signatory, a member of the Dokis First Nation and an open sympathizer with Israel, told the National Post that the others remained anonymous out of fear of being targeted by pro-Palestinians. That’s pretty sad, but a good indicator of the militancy in the anti-Israel camp. Nothing could be more injurious to the notion of “reconciliation” than to align indigenous Canadians with a demographic so swollen with hatred for those they consider foreign settlers that they prefer collective dysfunction to peaceful co-existence.
Armchair revolutionaries in their ivory towers are pleased to observe Fanonist scenarios come to life, especially when the blood (of others) starts flowing. As one Cornell University put it to a pro-Palestinian rally, the Hamas attacks “exhilarated” him. Insightful pundit Theodore Dalrymple notes that intellectual support for the Soviet Union was most intense “when the regime was at its worst.” When Moscow became “grey and banal,” they lost interest.

Canadian intellectuals are playing with fire in nudging indigenous grievance-collectors into an invidious identification of their situation with the current “any means necessary” narrative. Aside from the grotesquely antisemitic motivation for Hamas’s proto-genocide, having nothing whatsoever to do with occupation or colonization, no Canadian identity group should be endorsing—let alone celebrating—sadistic depravity as a heroic political act. Those who do have forfeited the right to sympathy for their own grievances from Canadians who retain a moral compass.