Left, Right — Marching to the Beat of Imperial Canada

Talk and book launch with Yves Engler

Thursday November 1
7 pm
UVic, Harry Hickman 105

Everyone welcome. Free admission.

Yves Engler’s new book, Left, Right — Marching to the Beat of Imperial Canada examines the role played by Canada’s “left” over many decades. While Canada supports empire and promotes corporate interests abroad, left commentators concede too much to the dominant ideology, whether it’s Stephen Lewis praising Canada’s role in Africa, or Linda McQuaig turning Lester Pearson into an anti-US peacenik.

Engler’s research examines the historical record of Canada’s social democratic party and unions in supporting imperialism, from the creation of NATO, Korean War, assassination of Patrice Lumumba, Bay of Pigs invasion, to the 2004 coup in Haiti. Even though the left in Canada has not been politically critical — there is work to be done, and Yves suggests a role for the left in helping to create a just foreign policy.

About the author
Dubbed “Canada’s version of Noam Chomsky” (Georgia Straight), “one of the most important voices on the Canadian Left” (Briarpatch), “in the mould of I. F. Stone” (Globe and Mail), “part of that rare but growing group of social critics unafraid to confront Canada’s self-satisfied myths” (Quill & Quire), “ever-insightful” (Rabble), “Chomsky-styled iconoclast” (Counterpunch) and a “Leftist gadfly” (Ottawa Citizen), Yves Engler (yvesengler.com) has nine published books.

Sponsored by Social Justice Studies UVic, Victoria Peace Coalition, Council of Canadians, Central American Support Committee, Chile-Mapuche Solidarity, Women in Black Victoria, Vancouver Island Peace and Disarmament Network, and Coalition Against Israeli Apartheid.

Overcoming the NDP’s anti-Palestinian history
A talk by Yves Engler

Saturday, November 3
1 – 3 pm
UVic, Cornett B111

Before Israel’s creation, Canada’s social democratic party took a sensible, humanist position towards Zionism, but soon it began echoing Israel’s justification for ethnically cleansing Palestinians and invasions of neighbouring countries in 1956 and 1967. Through the 1970s and ’80s NDP luminaries Tommy Douglas, Ed Broadbent and Stephen Lewis made stridently anti-Palestinian statements.

In recent years, NDP MPs have participated in the Canada-Israel Interparliamentary Group, Centre for Israel and Jewish Affairs trips to Israel, American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) conferences and Jewish National Fund events.

At their convention in February 2018, the NDP leadership nakedly suppressed debate on a widely endorsed “Palestine Resolution”. That incident highlighted the party hierarchy’s anti-Palestinianism as well as growing support for Palestinian rights among the membership.

Yves Engler will offer a roadmap for those who oppose racism and colonialism to push the NDP into supporting the struggle of the Palestinian people. Discussion on action will follow.

Sponsored by Social Justice Studies, UVic, The Olive Tree Group, UVic and the Young Communist League


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