Netanyahu returning to Montreal

09.04.03

Well, it’s official: Benjamin Netanyahu will be returning to Montreal. But – perhaps wisely – he’ll likely stay far away from Concordia this time; he’ll be speaking at a local synagogue instead:

Netanyahu’s visit this fall will be as minister of finance in the government of Ariel Sharon. He will meet with Quebec business executives about investing in Israel.

The official nature of his planned tour contrasts with last year’s visit here – and to Ottawa, Toronto and Winnipeg – when he came as a private citizen. He was invited to Concordia by Hillel, the main Jewish organization on campus.

Various levels of security will be on duty the night of the planned synagogue speech, which Poupko said will be open to all “as long as they behave themselves.”

On the one hand, it would have been nice for him to be invited back to Concordia merely to prove a point about free speech. On the other hand, I wouldn’t put it past the same idiots to riot again, just like last year. At least this way, Netanyahu’s speech will likely be heard.

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