Syria back in the news with the vetoes of both Russia and China in the United Nations Security Council stopping or at least suspending any new actions of military intervention, or sanctions by the Americans, Canada, the European Alliance and their allies in Syria. Where is Canada’s voice speaking out against China? Has the Chinese cat got Canada’s tongue?
As I listened to John Baird, Minister of Foreign Affairs, I realised that there was no tough talk, or condemning of China for its veto. John Baird talked about the lives being lost and our humanitarian leadership and how Canada wanted to do more and would do more, but fell short of talking about any real effort to stop the killing of the Syrian People by the Syrian government and that the Canadian government was disappointed in the vetoes used by Russia and China to block the resolution to entertain military action in Syria.
When asked his opinion or what Canada’s position was on military action, John Baird said no comment and then all but threw the hot potato into the hands of the already embattled Defense Minister, Peter Mackay and Public Safety Minister Vic Toews.
I know that there was a time when Canada would have been heard above all others voicing their condemnation of the vetoes by Russia and China, but since we went looking for new trading partners, specifically selling dirty oil to China, we seemed to have lost our voice; has the Chinese cat got Canada’s tongue? I guess with all that oil revenue on the line Canada can not afford to insult their new best friend. We have of late consistently put making money ahead of our morals and high ideals. We have abandoned Canadian values and sought to become like the Jones’ and we have succeeded in this effort, boasting in our ability to hoard money and religiously refusing to share it even with less fortunate Canadians.
We as a country under this government have continued to sign deals with countries who maintain low or meet no standards when it come to human and civil rights in their countries, giving us an anything for money reputation in these issues and making Canadians look like hypocrites. We seek United Nations approval to do things we know was not in its orignal mandate and that will not lead to negotiation and diplomacy and get angry when we do not succeed. When our allies controlled the floor and every resolution that came out of the United Nation’s Security Council we loved it, but now that the members we allowed in vote another way for a peaceful negotiated resolution we get angry that we can not use our very expensive bombs to achieve a quick victory. This is not Canadian; this is not diplomatic; this is just plain greedy and dangerous.
I guess we all are entitled to have our own opinion as to how and in what way Syria should be helped, but the government of this country made a promise to these people to stand by them and to back them in their effort to free themselves from the tyranny and the oppression that these people found themselves in. We promised that no matter it would take financially, militarily, or in humanitarian effort we would be there, but we hesitate now, I guess not wanting to lose a customer for that dirty oil.
Another thing that comes to my mind with all of these interventions, embargos and sanctions and all of the other fancy terms we have for interfering in another sovereign countries affairs is what would we do if someone really took a good look at our record in dealing with our First Nations Peoples and decided that we needed to do better or face sanctions, embargos and maybe even military intervention if we refused to comply? The United Nations has already condemned Canada for its treatment of its native people and now for the making the types of emergency laws like the one that Quebec used to put down the students protests, so at what point is it okay for another country to demand that we change our ways or face the consequences? Look I am not saying that we should or should not intervene in another countries private affairs, when people are being slaughtered in their sleep but when we do we should have our own house clean first. I guess what I would like to see is consistency in our foreign policy, leadership and compassion too. I would like to see some follow through in these undertakings, so that after the bloodshed and the horrors of war are finished that people are truly better off then when they started out. Now if I were to give the Canadian government the benefit of the doubt and say that Harper and company really mean well, which I do not, one would think that their social conscience would extend to the Canadian people, but it does not. We in the west are supposed to represent democracy, governance according to law. We insist in our countries that the only way to change a law that the people do not like is by changing the law threw legal means and of late we are very strict and limit the interpretation of what is to be considered legal; in fact our only legal recourse seems to be voting out the governing party.
- In Canada we have under Steven Harper we have lost our right to collective bargaining. Every m,major strike legal strike action n this country has been interfered with by the government and settled in favor of the employer. The reason being given is that the strikes will slow down the progress of our economic recovery and inconvenience Canadians and so no matter how wrong the conditions of work are, or how unfair, unsafe working conditions are striking in this country is no longer an option. Yet we seem to think that when people ion other countries demand a fair wage, proper working conditions that their governments have an obligation to not only listen to them, but to make the changes asked for or be ready to accept sanctions, embargos and military intervention.
- It is also illegal to protest in this country and in most democratic countries Whether the demonstrations are peaceful or not. I think that the Occupy Protests proved that. For them or against them they in my opinion had the right to protest and to do so for as long as they wanted and endure whatever hardships they felt to endure, but this was not to be because the governments shut them down. If all of the parks belong to all citizens then how can a city evict, or stop people from protesting in them. Peaceful or not all protests were shit down by embarrassed governments and pressured governments. Yet we so-called democratic states expect other countries to allow their citizens toi riot in the streets, organize and speak of overthrowing the government and simply stand by and watch and say ,”See how democratic we are over here, without elections”
- I could go on and on, but I will end with this thought: Canada’s Prime Minister Harper, would turn the police, the army and CSIS, on any group, or individual that sought to take his power away from him by violence and insurrection, or other acts considered treasonous act and we as Canadian citizens would expect him to do so. Having said that and acknowledging that on the other hand Canadians have lost a lot of the democratically fundamental rights, I ask you by what right do we bomb others, force regime changes and support what in this country passes as treason and is against the law?
We can not have it both ways, because democracy, freedom and human rights do not work in bits and pieces; you either have it, stand by its principles no matter how inconvenient it may seem at times, or you cheapen it and it starts to look like tyranny. Unfortunately that is what I think we are practicing now in Canada while demanding that others follow principles that we no longer do. This all reminds me of a movie I once saw that at the end when the Roman Emperor was murdered the Senate walked around shouting, “Throne for sale for a thousand gold eagles”, not much caring who took the throne as long as the could pay the price.
- Canada prepared to give Syria more aid: Baird – Canada.com (canada.com)
- Syrian opposition meeting with Baird to press for more aid (o.canada.com)
- Can Canada fix the UN – and should it try? (canada.com)
- Canada’s ambassador expects China to change Syria stance (cbc.ca)
- Canada expels Syrian diplomats over massacre (ctv.ca)