Calgary Peace Prize going to virulently antisemitic Palestinian poet

Mohammed El-Kurd. Credit: 2023 Calgary Peace Prize site.

(JNS) — The Anti-Defamation League has called Mohammed El-Kurd an “unvarnished, vicious antisemite.” Yet in spite of widely available evidence attesting to his prominence as a hatemonger, Mount Royal University in Canada chose to award the writer with the 2023 Calgary Peace Prize.

Now the International Legal Forum (ILF) has sent a letter urging the reversal of this decision.

It said: “His past statements go above and beyond any acceptable criticism of Israel, principles of free speech or the advancement of Palestinian rights. Instead, they represent an unhinged display of bigotry, use of antisemitic tropes and both the incitement and glorification of violence.”

ILF further pointed out how El-Kurd’s statements violated the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance’s (IHRA) working definition of antisemitism.

Some of the statements El-Kurd has made over the years include calling Zionists “sadistic barbaric neo-Nazi pigs” who have “completely internalized the ways of the Nazis.” He also said that he fantasized about this fate: “I hope every one of them dies in the most torturous & slow ways. I hope that they see their mothers suffering.”

El-Kurd is a Palestinian writer and poet based out of Sheik Jarrah in eastern Jerusalem.

According to the Calgary Peace Prize site, in 2021, he was named one of the 100 most influential people in the world by TIME magazine.