Author: Sandra Eccleston

Jews in Canada

Jewish Canadians – history, international relations, community

The Jewish history is complex and includes many theories and presumptions. As people may know, the Jews went through historical events that pushed them to dissipate all over the world. More than that, Jews come from a mixture of ascents that is difficult to track back in time. After many revolts that proved to be unsuccessful, the Jews established in different homelands, all around the globe. One of the locations they chose is Canada. Usually, the immigrants in Canada come from culturally major groups. This was not the case for Jews. They chose Canada as a homeland out of necessity. Jewish people lived in diverse parts of the Middle East, Europe, and even Africa. The Jewish communities in Canada are now prosperous and both Israel and Canada are tied diplomatically, commercially and culturally. This is a short presentation of the tumultuous history of the Jewish Canadians.

The beginning

Jews were pressured to mass-migrate. This is the reason why their traces can be found in different parts of the world. Communities were settled in various countries and they managed to start their lives from scratch. The story of the Jewish Canadians started in the 18thcentury when the British Empire set up limitations for Jews. Eventually, Jewish people managed to settle in different parts of southern Canada and in Québec. As they developed their relationship with the Canadian Government, Jews started to spread towards Northern Canada as well. They started to built synagogues, the first one being built in the late 19th century (the Holy Blossom Temple in Toronto). Jews joined the Canadian Confederation and the community was finally established. Montréal and Toronto were the hosts of almost three-quarters of the whole Canadian-Jewish community. Jews worked in industries such as retail and wholesale, working their way up to successful businesses. Jewish merchants did meet success, especially in communities that were settled in prosperous locations such as Canada.

International relations

The diplomatic relations between Israel and Canada are dynamic, as they are always active and continuously improving. The longevity of the Israeli-Canadian relation is one of the numerous proofs that diplomacy is involved in the relations. After Israel finally declared its independence, Canada recognized it as a state. Of course, there were also some moments when the international relations between the two countries were tensioned and controversial. Assassination attempts were the main causes of these misunderstandings. Even though these moments took place, the Israeli-Canadian relation remained friendly and open.

Community

The Jewish Canadian community nowadays is just as prosperous as in the beginning. The growing number of Jewish Canadians is promising. The community created a Canada-Israel Committee that allows discussing urgent problems of Israel in Canada or vice-versa. Also, Canadians appreciate the huge cultural contributions that Jewish people had during the passage of time. Canada is happy to be the host of a multicultural environment, where everyone can contribute to the well-being of the community. Ethnic diversity is the stepping stone that sustains the Israeli-Canadian relation.