Stephen Harper recently gave a speech in which he said: "Gone are the days when Canadian foreign policy was about nothing more than trying to be liked by every dictator with a vote at the U.N." Unless you're currently a dictator in Egypt, Saudi Arabia, or Bahrain, who our government always wears their special cologne for: "See No Evil, Smell No Evil" by Versace.
Harper went on to say that "Canada will continue to stand by Israel through fire and water." And we proved it last week by opposing a Middle East ban on nuclear weapons, so Israel wouldn't have to give up their peaceful nuclear bombs, which are a crucial deterrent to Iran's nonexistent nuclear bombs.
This steadfast support of Israel isn't a controversial stance. The Conservatives, Liberals and NDP all refused to condemn Israel during the Gaza war last year. Although I'm not sure it's a war when one side has a well-trained army of hundreds of thousands, an air force, tanks, nuclear weapons and effectively occupies the land it's at war with -- and the other side has none of those things.
During that "war" that killed over 2000 people -- about 70 per cent of them Palestinian civilians, 495 of them children, Israel's justice minister wrote in a Facebook post: "What's so horrifying about understanding that the entire Palestinian people is the enemy?" That’s the justice minister. Even George Orwell would be like "I dunno, it's a bit on the nose."
Interviews were recently released with members of the Israeli army who participated in that "war." One staff sergeant said "The instructions are to shoot right away. Whoever you spot -- be they armed or unarmed….Any person you run into, that you see with your eyes -- shoot to kill."
To our government's credit, they reacted to that kind of savagery with a zero-tolerance policy. Unfortunately it's not zero tolerance of killing children and unarmed people, it's zero tolerance of the non-violent protest of it. So I guess when the Prime Minister said we'll stand by Israel through fire and water, what he really meant was fire, water, and a lot of blood.
This video originally appeared in The Toronto Star.
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