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Hard Numbers: Arms for Israel under scrutiny, Canadian kids in crisis, back to the future for housing, “Boy and Heron” flies high, “G7” fakes revealed

​Protesters carry signs during a march calling for the end of the Israeli attacks in Gaza in downtown Montreal.

Protesters carry signs during a march calling for the end of the Israeli attacks in Gaza in downtown Montreal.

REUTERS/Christinne Muschi (CANADA)
21: Activists are calling on Canada to halt its $21 million worth of annual arms exports to Israel amid rising concern about their use in possible violations of the laws of war. US President Joe Biden, Israel’s staunchest international ally, rapped Israel this week for what he called “indiscriminate” bombing of the Gaza Strip.

1.6 A new report warns that as many as 1.6 million Canadian youth and teens are struggling with mental health crises and that many of them are forced to wait months or even years for appropriate treatment. By our calculations, that’s one out of every five young people in Canada. Experts say the trends are worsening, in part because of the pandemic, but also because of fragmented and underfunded mental health services.

3.5: As Canada faces a housing shortage of at least 3.5 million units by the end of the decade, the government is going back to the future for a solution. Housing Minister Sean Fraser says that in January officials will begin discussions on reviving a 1950s strategy of using pre-approved housing designs to speed construction.

12.8: For the first time in his storied career, Japanese animated film legend Hayao Miyazaki has topped the North American box offices, as his latest movie “The Boy and the Heron” brought in $12.8 million in its theatrical debut. If you’ve never seen his films, they are magical journeys in which (usually) children protagonists negotiate big themes of nature vs. civilization, life and death, and tradition vs. modernity – start with his Oscar-winning classic “Spirited Away.”

10: For politics nerds, the Group of Seven, or G7, is a club of the world’s leading democracies, but for Canadian art buffs it’s a famous group of nature-oriented painters active in the 1920s. Why are we telling you this? Because it’s now been confirmed that 10 oil sketches previously attributed to one of the group’s founders, J.E.H. Macdonald, are fakes. Just in time for you to see them at an exhibition opening in Vancouver this weekend!

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