The Times of Israel reports: It’s time the world — and Jews themselves — identify the People of the Book as indigenous people. At least, that’s the opinion of indigenous rights activist Ryan Bellerose of Alberta, Canada.
He recently returned from his second trip to the Holy Land where he filmed a video supporting the concept for the Israeli advocacy group StandWithUs.
“Indigenous status means that your people had a coalescence and a genesis on the land,” says Bellerose, co-founder of Calgary United with Israel, which advocates “for the wellness and security of Jews and their national homeland.”
In a video that has attracted thousands of views since its release last month, Bellerose elaborates, “Everything that makes Jews Jewish — their spirituality, their traditions, their culture, their language, everything — it stems from Israel.”
Bellerose is a Métis from Northern Alberta — Native People recognized by the Canadian government as Aboriginal. His father, Mervin Bellerose, co-authored the Métis Settlements Act of 1989, which the Alberta legislature passed in 1990, cementing Native land rights. In addition to Calgary United with Israel, Ryan also founded Canadians For Accountability, a Native rights advocacy group, and is an organizer in the “Idle No More” movement, which supports indigenous sovereignty and land and water stewardship.
Read more here