Female cyclist champion allegedly dismissed from women’s event for being Jewish and serving in the IDF 30 years ago

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A Jewish cyclist who was reportedly disinvited as the keynote speaker for an International Women’s Day event because she previously served in the Israeli military suggested that there could be more to the story for why she was dismissed, per Fox News Digital.

Leah Goldstein is a Canadian cyclist who secured her name in the history books after she became the first woman to win a 3,000-mile bike race across the United States. It seemed that she was an excellent choice to be the keynote speaker for an International Women’s Day event in Ontario, Canada.

But just five months after she was asked to be the keynote speaker, she was informed she had been disinvited from the event. In those five months, Hamas launched a surprise attack against Israel, slaughtering 1,200 Israelis and abducting 250 more. Since the October 7 attack, anti-Semitism has been on the rise.

During an interview with Fox News on Thursday, Goldstein asked: “The question is… what about other Jewish women that want to come to this conference? Are they also excluded?”

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“Another question is, if I was a Palestinian woman, would I also be removed? And, as a Jewish woman, let me just add that I wouldn’t feel offended listening to a Palestinian woman talk about her life experiences and stuff that she had gone through, so why am I excluded from this? But it is simply because I’m Jewish. The IDF is just an excuse.”

The Times of Israel reported that a growing number of anti-Israel activists expressed that Goldstein’s service in the IDF over 30 years ago was the reason why she was disinvited from the event.

While critics have put pressure on Goldstein to give her opinion on the ongoing conflict in the Middle East, she suggested that doing so would be “ridiculous.”

The women’s empowerment group commented on the situation, stating: “Our focus at INSPIRE has been and will always be to create safe spaces to honor, share, and celebrate the remarkable stories of women and non-binary individuals.”

“In recognition of the current situation and the sensitivity of the conflict in the Middle East, the Board of INSPIRE will be changing our keynote speaker.”

Marina Rosenberg — the Anti-Defamation League’s senior vice president of international affairs — said that the situation surrounding Goldstein represents an alarming trend.

“We’re seeing more and more instances of Israeli speakers being disinvited simply because of their nationality or IDF service,” Rosenberg said.

“Let’s be clear: Boycotting Israeli speakers is hurtful, antithetical to free speech and ultimately counterproductive. It fails to recognize the complexities of the situation.”

Goldstein noted that she did not plan to make a political speech. Instead, she planned to “talk about the crap that I went through and the crap that most women go through, and they still do, and how I handled it.”

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