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John Chuckman



Please, my Russian friends, do not think most Canadians believe this American-generated garbage about threats from Russia. Many of us know Russia’s government today is one of the sanest on the planet.

But we are a small country (one-tenth America’s population and less than one-tenth its wealth) living next to an immensely powerful bully, and our economy is terribly dependent upon the bully.

Even a liberal-minded and decent man like Trudeau cannot resist the pressures which are quietly applied in private.

After all, this Canadian government of decent people has already felt the pressure to carry out a large armaments order ($15 billion) for Saudi Arabia that had been arranged by the darkest, most unpleasant government in our history, Stephen Harper’s.

Men like Trudeau and Dion know full well the Saudis are committing atrocities in Yemen and suppress their own population. It would never be their choice to complete such a sale.

But when the manufacturer involved is an American subsidiary, you can just imagine what would happen if the government acted on its own beliefs and morals.

This is an excellent example of the kind of world in which we live. America’s vast foreign investments and financial weight give it a very big stick with which to threaten governments in private.

There was a time when Canadian governments would have resisted. Remember, Lester Pearson refused Lyndon Johnson’s demands that Canada send troops to Vietnam, and it is reliably reported that Johnson literally grabbed Pearson by the lapels of his jacket and pushed against the wall, using foul language.

Remember, too, Jean Chretien refused the US’s demand that Canada send troops to the illegal Iraqi invasion. The UN had not supported the invasion, and Chretien said Canada could only work under UN approval.

But today the bully is unusually active and aggressive, and on many fronts. This is the work of the neo-cons for the past decade and a half. It also reflects the American establishment’s fears of its influence declining in the multi-polar world which is emerging. So they are acting ferociously and dangerously, now even having organizations like the UN securely under their thumb. The Secretary General today is a hopeless American choice who speaks out on nothing.

And look at the Dutch, traditionally a very honorable and intelligent people. Yet under America’s furnace breath today, they carry on with a phony, never-ending investigation of MH-17, a plane certainly destroyed by Ukraine’s reckless new government, something which could have been ascertained in weeks.

Sending troops to Latvia near Russia’s border is not the way Canada historically behaves, but in these days, there appears to be little choice.

Despite his flaws, one can only hope Trump wins the coming American election. He is our only hope for a stop to this American insanity in foreign affairs. Hillary certainly will give us years more of the same vicious behavior, and perhaps even worse since she has been bought and sold by the neo-cons many times over.

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