I find it perplexing that Canadian PM Harper would not criticize Israel for Canadian deaths. Regardless of whatever position you hold on the Israel-Palestine conflict, we are Canadians first. And Canadians are now dead in this war.
When the US made it a policy to pull over Arab-Canadians at the border, Canada's Liberal government protested. They even posted a travel advisory on their website warning about travel to the US, our best friend, business partner and ally. The US then disregarded that policy. Similarly Canada's Liberals have frequently petitioned for Canadian activists held by Israel. When it mattered, the Liberals stood up for Canada.
I don't think Israel purposely targetted the Canadians. However, they purposely targetted civilian infrastructure in Lebanon. They are destroying airports, bridges, houses, buses, ports, offices and hospitals [BBC]. Harper should first condemn Israel for targetting civilian infrastructure that has nothing to do with the radicals in the south of the country. Then he should say Israel's response is now no longer measured. And finally, he should ask Israel to stop attacking ports [this is how we are going to remove our stranded nationals].
Many bloggers said since a radical force over which the Lebanon government has no control kidnapped soldiers near the border, they hold Lebanon responsible for an act of war. Now Israeli warplanes have killed Canadians under direct order of the government. Is Israel's response still measured, Prime Minister? What about the thousands of Lebanese/Palestinians the Israelis hold in their prisons? Who begs for their release?
On Harper's Misguided Position And Quebec:
It seems Harper's ill-thought out strategy and position on the Middle East crisis may backfire in terms of votes towards the Conservatives. First, thousands of Lebanese Canadians in Montreal have protested against the government's position. These are Quebec suburbs where many voted Conservatives last time around, being sick of the Liberals. Reuters reports that many may now rethink their vote next time around. It looks like Peter's comments from my previous post is a bit optimistic. I am glad. It is time politicians realize their actions have consequences at the ballot box.
The flip side of this position is that many of these votes may now go to the BQ rather than the Liberals.
Did Harper modify his position, as asked by the Star? Even though he dodged questions, It would appear no.
Meanwhile the Canadian Arab Federation has criticized Harper and accused him directly of being responsible for the death of Canadians. This is ofcourse stupid of them. It's like Jack Layton blaming Paul Martin for the death of the homeless. Arab lobbyists still have to learn a lot.
Tags: Canada Israel