Why, Canada, why?
Peace Prize for Harper? Are you nuts?
“Steven Harper – Nobel Peace Prize nominee.” This is a statement that not only boggles the mind, but also leaves me in a state of utter amazement and disbelief. However, the B’nai Brith organization seems determined that our Stephen deserves this recognition for… (wait for it) moral clarity for his defense of Israel, his criticism of Russia, his moral stand against an Islamic State, and his love of westernized democracies. There is just one problem: it is for these reasons that he should not be nominated for this award.
For instance, Harper’s support of Israel is predicated on ignoring several international laws and legal findings. The most notable is the Fourth Geneva Convention, specifically Article 49 (6). This article states that the occupying power cannot deport or transplant parts of its own population into the territories it occupies. This is central to the issues of the expansion settlements in to the West Bank that is a result of the actual issue of the military occupation of the Palestinian people, not rockets. Furthermore, Harper continues to find the ‘moral clarity’ to ignore the findings of the International Court of Justice, the Tilley and Goldstone reports and the right of self-determination for Palestinians proscribed under international law. As for the right to “self-defense,” well, that is only afforded to Israel.
Harper embarrassed us at the recent NATO meetings. He is like a small dog with a big bark. Leading up to and during the meetings, Harper ‘smack talked’ Putin until he was asked to join and contribute to the coalition to assist Ukraine. You see, Harper just cut military funding and he is not willing to back up his tough talk. Instead, Canada looks stupid in front of our allies. Not that the helicopters that cannot fly and the submarines with the screen doors would not have been helpful anyway.
The Syrian civil war and the conflict in Iraq are not easily solved. But, we don’t have to worry about it too much as, despite Harper’s rhetoric, he doesn’t seem to know what side we are on. The opportunity to help was two years ago when Assad was attacked during the rebellion. Now, ISIS has become a major factor. Not only has it been able to build new coalitions through redistribution of wealth from captured oil fields, they are also able to recruit members internationally, including Canada. Harper does not ask why; he has been silent on this issue.
ISIS is not the only issue Harper was silent on. In fact, he just signed Canada to a new trade deal with China. This trade deal was done in secrecy and without debate in Parliament. NAFTA was debated in Parliament. In fact, the 1988 election acted as a referendum on the NAFTA agreement. Another interesting difference between NAFTA and this new agreement with China is that in NAFTA, we can leave with a six-month notice. In the new trade agreement, we would need to give a 15-year notice. Furthermore, this agreement will give Chinese companies control over Canadian resources, expose Canadian taxpayers to extensive liabilities and empower foreign companies with binding arbitration to overrule Canadian environmental and energy laws and policies.
Since we are handing out arbitrary awards, I would like to take this opportunity to nominate Harper for an Oscar. I actually thought, despite my misgivings with him, that he actually liked Canada. Bravo Stephen. Joke’s on us.