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One of the most important stories of last week was drowned out by Justin Trudeau’s naked pecs. A few months after approving a $15 billion weapons deal with Saudi Arabia, which almost certainly breaks export control rules, the Liberal government has changed those rules. Instead of restricting weapons exports, a Global Affairs report says export controls will now “balance the economic and commercial interests of Canadian business with the national interest of Canada.”
So human rights have gone from a must have to something nice to have, but we can’t always afford them. Maybe for special occasions. Sometimes you just gotta treat yourself to a Yemeni civilian. And to make our new humanitaryish stance clear, before making weapons deals, consultations with those depressing human rights experts are now optional. Thank God. Or maybe Satan.
Canada has now become the second-largest arms exporter to the Middle East firing range, which probably explains why our government is making Canada to weapons companies what Switzerland is to banks. But it leaves me with a couple of questions:
One, if Stephen Harper did this, would we give him the benefit of the doubt we eagerly give our Harlequin cover of a PM? And two, if Trudeau’s government continues disgraceful policies like this, will his photo-ops have to get hunkier and hunkier to distract from them? If the Liberals ratify the TPP and keep C-51 mostly intact, we might see the first sex tape ever released by a world leader. Unless Donald Trump beats him to it.
This video originally appeared on The Toronto Star.