Investigation: The antisemitism that Oct. 7 unleashed in Canada

Posted on 20 February 2024

Investigation: The antisemitism that Oct. 7 unleashed in Canada

"The Oct. 7 Hamas attack on Israel has sparked a dramatic surge of antisemitism across Canada, according to a Global News investigation based on documents, interviews and figures compiled from police forces.

Homes, businesses, schools, places of worship, neighbourhoods and institutions have all been targeted in what community leaders are calling an unparalleled spike in hate crimes against Jews.

In addition, Canadian intelligence reports warn that Jewish community centres, day schools, synagogues and grocery stores are among the “possible targets” of “increasingly likely” extremist attacks.

Antisemitic incidents have jumped in every major city, police figures show. (The government defines antisemitism as a “certain perception of Jews, which may be expressed as hatred toward Jews.”)

In Toronto, they more than doubled to 132 last year, while those against the larger Muslim population grew to 35 from 12, and the LGBTQ2 community was targeted 66 times.

Reports of antisemitism also increased more than twofold in Halifax, to 18 from seven in 2022, according to police. Alberta’s two biggest cities saw a rise to 45 from 25 the year before.

Most were in Calgary, where there were 27 incidents, up from 15, while in Edmonton the numbers went from 10 in 2022 to 18 — with 15 of those occurring after Oct. 7.

Ottawa’s Jewish population numbers just 15,000 in a city of one million, but was the most targeted group for hate, accounting for one out of every five incidents in the capital last year."

On the West Coast, there were more antisemitic hate crimes in Vancouver after Oct. 7 than in all of 2022, which the city’s police department attributed to the Israel-Hamas conflict.

“We are living in unprecedented times,” said Nico Slobinsky, Pacific Region vice-president at the Centre for Israel and Jewish Affairs. “We have seen the mainstreaming of antisemitism.”

Read more from Stewart Bell & Jeff Semple as Global News investigation explores Canada's dramatic spike in antisemitic hate:


“Globalized antisemitism is a thriving international enterprise that transverses cultures and civilizations. You can help us fight the this most enduring, pervasive, and lethal mode of hatred.”

Raheel Raza



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“antisemitism is unique in the annals of prejudices”

“No other widespread prejudice has characterized people as such cosmological threats…. No other prejudicial discourse has been so eliminationist or produced such regular calls for violence and extermination.”

Prof. Daniel Jonah Goldhagen

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