Skip to comments.Group: Attack on Montreal school avenges Yassin killing [propaganda]
Posted on 04/06/2004 11:01:10 AM PDT by yonif
MONTREAL - The Monday arson attack on a Montreal Jewish school was carried out to avenge Israel's assassination of Hamas founder and leader Sheikh Ahmed Yassin, according to a letter found at the scene.
Quebec's French-language TVA television network reported the letter denounced recent Israeli attacks against Palestinians, including the killing of Yassin.
The letter noted the arsonists intended the attack as a warning and did not intend to harm people, Montreal media outlets reported.
But this is just the beginning, the letter warned, adding that if Israel continues its "crimes" in the Middle East those then those responsible for the Montreal attack will carry out further operations.
CTV News quoted a portion of the letter Monday: "Our goal was only to sound the alarm without causing deaths. . . .but this is just a beginning. If your crimes continue in the Middle East, our attacks will continue."
There were no casualties in the firebombing but the blaze it caused destroyed library books and damaged a library computer system on the eve of the Passover holiday, and police found anti-Semitic notes taped to the school's walls.
Montreal police spokesman Yves Surprenant refused to say how the blaze started or provide details about the notes' contents, except to say they were signed by an unknown organization.
Surprenant said it was "the most deplorable act"' he has seen in 24 years on the force.
"What was written on the notes really told us it was a hate crime," he said.
Canadian Prime Minister Paul Martin confirmed the United Talmud Torah school, which was closed at the time of the blaze Monday, was firebombed.
Sidney Benudiz, head of the school, called the fire "an act of terrorism, plain and simple." She said the school has had some graffiti and minor vandalism in the past.
Martin said the firebombing was an "attack on freedom."
Setting fire to "a place of learning, where young children gather is an offense against all that Canadians cherish," the prime minister said.
The attack follows a recent spate of anti-Semitic violence in Toronto.
Three Toronto teenagers were charged after several vandals toppled headstones at a Jewish cemetery and spray-painted anti-Semitic slogans on a synagogue. In a separate incident, a 46-year-old man was arrested after a Star of David, an equal sign and a swastika were sprayed on construction boarding in west-end Toronto.
Justice Minister Irwin Cotler, who attended a branch of the Talmud school, said the attack was part of increased trend in anti-Semitism, both in Canada and worldwide.
Canada "will not be silent and we will not be intimated and we will act and we will bring the full force of law to bear against those who would commit these cowardly acts of racist, hate crimes," he said.
Montreal Mayor Gerald Tremblay promised an increased police presence at Jewish institutions during the holiday period.
Last month, B'nai Brith Canada reported an increase in anti-Semitic incidents across the country in 2003, saying there were almost 600 cases of violence, harassment and vandalism against Jews and over 100 such incidents in Quebec alone.
At sundown Monday, Jews around the world began observances of the weeklong Passover festival, commemorating the flight of the ancient Israelites from bondage in Egypt, as described in the Old Testament.
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A classic case of antisemitism posing as anti-Zionism.