My dear friends,
My apologies to those of you not living in Canada.
In the last few years Muslims in Canada have lived under tremendous
pressure and anxiety. Every day we see our voices being stifled and our
very future in this country at stake.
Throughout this time there has been one ray of hope on the Canadian
political scene; the presence of the NDP and its Foreign Affairs critic
MP Svend Robinson. This courageous man has stood courageously and
confronted Israeli soldiers in Ramallah, Russian mercenaries in Kosova,
and has spoken for the right of self determination of the Kashmiri
However, Svend Robinson was attacked by pro-Israeli lobby within the
party and his position as critic on Mid-East was taken away from him.
The same people who sabotaged Svend Robinson's pro-Muslim stance, today
are preparing to take over the leadership of the NDP at its next
leadership convention in January 2003.
The candidate of the pro-Israeli wing of the party is MP Bill Blaikie
whose campaign is being managed by a party hack hostile to many Muslim
issues Svend Robinson has chosen not to run, but has endorsed Toronto
politician Jack Layton as his leadership favourite. Jack Layton is an
articulate and activist politician who stands a good chance to beat the
pro-Israeli candidate Bill Blaikie. Svend Robinson is appealing to all
his supporters in the Muslim community to come out, join the party and
support the leadership bid of Jack Layton.
Svend Robinson stood up for us. We owe it to him to back Jack Layton. If
Jack loses, Muslims and other equity seeking people will not only have
lost a great opportunity to bring change in the country, but will also
lose Svend Robinson's voice on International matters. The pro-Israeli
camp have made it clear that if Bill Blaikie wins, Svend is history.
I and many other Muslim New Democrats agree and stand with Svend. I am
appealing to all of you living in Canada to join the party before
December 10, 2003 and vote with him, and vote for Jack Layton. Please
also note that for the first time, the NDP has opened its leadership
race so that ALL its members can now participate. It is no longer a case
of Riding Associations choosing delegates to vote for a leader at the
Party Convention. By becoming a member, you can now vote directly for
the leader through a ballot mailed to you or through the Internet.
Membership fee is $25, but for students, Seniors, and unemployed it is
only $5. All fees and donations are 75% tax deductible. The deadline for
submitting membership forms is December 10, 2002 but please do not wait
until then. Any person above the age of 12 can become a member and vote.
Landed immigrants can also become members.
For too long we have felt powerless. Now we have the CHOICE to put
someone in a LEADERSHIP POSITION who stands up for issues of JUSTICE
which are of primary concern to Muslims. We can do this by urging our
family members and friends to become members and help elect Jack Layton
as leader of the NDP; a true friend of the Muslim Community who is
opposed to the war on Iraq.
It would also ensure a strong voice for our long-term ally, Svend
WE DO NOT HAVE MUCH TIME TO ACT. The Leadership Convention is on January
25-26, 2003 in Toronto. The deadline for memberships is December 10,
To find out more about Jack Layton, visit his website at
www.jacklayton.com, call their toll free number at 1-866-522-5637 or
email Jack at info@...