Developments of Concern Related to U.S./NATO War Hysteria
Oppose Attacks on Canadians of Russian Origin and Their Institutions
Shortly after services ended on February 27, red paint was poured on the front doors of the All Saints Russian Orthodox Church in Calgary. Security cameras showed that a man first tried to enter the building, and on finding the door locked poured paint on the doors.
Owners of a Calgary Russian food store and the Russian Spoon in Vancouver have spoken out about the threats they are receiving, and how this is impacting the mental health of the workers. News media report that these are far from isolated cases. Social media threats against Canadians of Russian origin are also being reported.
Cultural performances by Russians are also being cancelled. The young Russian pianist Alexander Malofeev was scheduled to perform with symphony orchestras from Montreal to Vancouver. Malofeev had already arrived in Montreal for three dates with the Orchestre Symphonique de Montréal (OSM), when the concerts were cancelled. The orchestra said it would “not be appropriate” for Malofeev to perform. In Vancouver, the reason given for cancelling the concert was that “extra security” would be needed.
Meanwhile, NHL hockey great Alexander Ovechkin, was pressured to make a statement denouncing Russia.
The comments section on these media stories show that Canadians are firmly opposed to the persecution of people of Russian origin, just as in the past they have opposed attacks on all sections of the people, individuals and groups. The pattern is predictable. Official circles incite individuals and groups against other individuals and groups on the basis of their own idological beliefs. They promote what they call Canadian values which are declared to be democratic and peace- and freedom-loving and thus it becomes a matter of honour and patriotism to attack those not seen to uphold the same beliefs and opinions. The current climate in imbued with hatred of anything Russian as incited by the Deputy Prime Minister whose personal hatred for the president of Russia is vented with a degree of viciousness not often seen.
The climate is such that nobody can discuss matters at hand freely. Accusations of being enemies of the state abound when people do not join the warmongering caravan of the government. Demands that Canadian citizens and residents or guests must declare their political views and personal beliefs are not acceptable. Why should people fear for their security, their jobs or their lives because of their personal opinions or beliefs? Will people of Russian origin in Canada now have their properties and institutions expropriated in the name of high ideals? This is what is taking place on a grand scale in the European countries, Canada and the U.S. in the name of sanctions against Russian oligarchs who are said to have influence over Putin. Which Canadian, U.S. and European oligarchs are going to benefit from the seizure of the assets and expropriation of the properties?
In the case of Islamophobia, Canada’s official circles deny that they were its chief promoters and that this incited individuals and groups to attack Muslims and their institutions in Canada. Besides other things, Imams and others were pressured to make statements that they were “moderates,” not “extremists” or “fundamentalists.” So too today, priests in Russian Orthodox churches are under pressure to make statements to dissociate themselves from Russian causes despite the fact that many in their congregations have family members who are suffering terribly at the hands of neo-nazi forces and have been for many years.
It is not acceptable to politicize nationality, religious beliefs or personal opinions or ideological beliefs. When it is done by the state which makes such things official policy, it is truly dangerous. If the state and its institutions, including official media, do not defend individuals and groups within society, but permit and protect hooliganism, who can the people count on for protection? The defamation of individuals as enemies of the state is medieval, heinous, and pernicious. It was introduced in Canada on a large scale after 9/11 with the Security Certificate process which permitted egregious violations of individual civil rights and of human rights. The Harper government introduced a “most wanted” program in 2011, complete with a website initially listing the profiles of individuals “accused of, or complicit in, war crimes or crimes against humanity.” Due process of law was dispensed with altogether. The Immigration Minister Jason Kenney held regular press conferences in a sensational scenario, adding and subtracting people from the list. The government exerted intense pressure on departmental officials, despite the misgivings they expressed about the initiative, including the Privacy Commissioner who objected to the list which inaccurately portrayed some people as war criminals.
The Trudeau and social democratic governments followed suit by using identity politics. These politics are a form of divide and rule under the guise of high ideals. On the basis of identity politics people can be defamed when their ideological views do not conform to those of people in positions of authority. Some even lose their jobs, while investigations into discrimination in the armed forces, police forces and government institutions do not eliminate problems of inequality, discrimination and violence against women. All of it covers up that it is the Constitution itself and institutions informed by it which pose the problems of discrimination and misogyny because they perpetrate structures based on inequality, colonial considerations and values.
In Canada, judging individuals and groups on the basis of racist, colonial and Eurocentric values led to the genocidal policy against the Indigenous peoples, the Chinese Exclusion Act, official “Keep Canada White” policies and the adoption of racist immigration criteria which excluded people from India and later Africa and the Caribbean. To this day, official communications categorize Canadian citizens and residents and Indigenous peoples by mixing up citizenship, nationality and what is called race.
During times of war, citizens and residents have been attacked, interned and deported, properties confiscated and stolen, all in the name of high ideals. Most recently, the government of Canada apologized to Italians for interning them during the World War II. Will it now intern all those of Russian nationality as well in the name of high ideals, and then those whose origins are linked to China? Will we see the establishment of inquisition courts to secure confessions and loyalty oaths from certain individuals and groups in order to secure the “privileges” of Canadian citizenship? Will Russian children now be forced to go to retraining schools as in the case of the Community Outreach and Counter-Radicalization program of the Trudeau government in 2016 aimed at Muslim youth whose views are deemed extremist because they oppose their countries of origin being attacked and bombed and occupied?
All of it shows that rights in Canada must be enshrined on a modern basis, that everyone is human and has rights by virtue of being human, not on the basis of the values of empire, the U.S. and NATO.
The Communist Party of Canada (Marxist-Leninist) calls on Canadians to oppose the warmongering propaganda of the government of Canada, its ministers and monopoly media. Speak out against the attacks on Russians and their institutions. To carry out such things in the name of freedom, peace and democracy is unacceptable. People in positions of power and privilege must not be permitted to get away with politicizing their personal opinions or beliefs, spreading personal hatred and grudges and then acting in a manner which destroys political culture and discourse, and humiliates individuals and groups who are not able to defend themselves. The state is supposed to defend all citizens and residents and guests alike. When the police and military themselves are being called on and praised for going to Ukraine to wipe out Russians, how can Canadians expect governments and the institutions of law and order to defend Russians in Canada? Targeting people on the basis of their nationality or beliefs is a gross violation of human rights. It must not pass!
(TML Daily, posted March 16, 2022)