Historian Irvin Guabella, co-author of an original book on the Canadian government's refusal to accept Jewish refugees fleeing the Holocaust. Died.
Avella died of a long illness on Sunday, the day after his 82nd birthday.
He was born and raised in Toronto and earned his bachelor's, master's and doctoral degrees from the University of Toronto.
His 1982 book, None is too Many: Canada and the Jews of Europe 1933-1948, co-authored with Harold Troper, covers most of Canada's antiimmigration policies against persecuted Jews. It sheds light on untold stories. Helped convince future governments to welcome migrants fleeing war.
Between the ascension of the Nazi Party in 1933 and the creation of the state of Israel in 1948, Canada accepted only 5,000 Jewish refugees. This is a legacy that Avella and Troper called the "worst record." Which country in the world.
This was especially true for the MS St. Louis, which was denied the right to drop passengers in Cuba and the United States in 1939. Some Canadians tried to persuade Prime Minister William Lyon Mackenzie King to moor the ship in Halifax, but was rejected by then-government immigration official Fredrick Blair. rice field. Avella and Troper are "too many", Blair has a special dislike for Jews, and with the full support of the King's liberal government, a very restrictive immigration designer. It was revealed that it was.
According to Avella's own approval, "None is Too Many" is more than an academic text detailing one of the darkest times in Canadian history. It wasn't thought of. Since then, it has gone far beyond that. In particular, the Canadian vocabulary contains the phrase "not too many". In Avella's own words, the book has become "an ethical standard by which government policies of the same period are evaluated."
To that end, just as Canadians were discussing what the country should do about Vietnam's crisis in the late 1970s, a pre-copy of some of the chapters in the book was former Immigration Minister Ron.・ It was sent to Atkey. Refugees who became known as boat people. After reading those chapters and learning Canada's sad treatment of European Jews, Atky vowed not to repeat the mistakes of the past, and Canada welcomed tens of thousands of new citizens.
This book won the 1983 US Jewish Book Award in the Holocaust category.
After the war, Avella was also very enthusiastic about accepting thousands of Nazi collaborators and war criminals, especially members of the Waffen-SS Galician Division, which consisted of Ukrainian nationalists and fascists. It was critical.
In a 1997 "60 Minutes" interview with Mike Wallace, Avella stated that entering Canada was relatively easy for SS members. Their trademark tattoos showed that they were definitely anti-communists.
Avella wrote "Coats of Many Colors: The Second Century of Jewish Life in Canada," an important textbook on the history of Jews in Canada, and some important on the history of labor. He was also the author of the text. Canadian movement. He taught his career at the University of York and held the position of Professor Schiff in Canadian Jewish History towards the end of his career.
Avella was active off-campus as chair of the Canadian Jewish Congress from 1992 to 1995 and as chair of VisionTV, a religious television channel.
"Irving Abella was a typical Canadian Jewish leader," said Bernie Farber, a former CEO of the Canadian Jewish Congress and now chairman of the Canadian Anti-Hate Network. increase. "He was wise, clear, charming, bold and positive. His inspiring leadership has become his legacy. To me, he was my leader and teacher. He May the memory of you always be for the blessing. "
Abella married Rosalie Silberman Abella, a former Canadian Supreme Court. Rosalie Silberman was not only the first Jewish woman, but also the first refugee to sit in the Canadian Supreme Court. They have two sons, Jacob and Zachary.
Avella became a member of the Order of Canada in 1993 and a member of the Order of Ontario in 2014. He is also a member of the Royal Society of Canada and was awarded the Queen Elizabeth II Golden Jubilee. 2002 medal.
This report by the Canadian Press was first published on July 4, 2022.