Archive for the ‘CANADA AND INTERNATIONAL AFFAIRS’ Tag

JOHN CHUCKMAN COMMENT: WHAT CANADA’S TRUDEAU IS SUPPOSED TO LEARN FROM MACRON’S G-7 INITIATIVE CONCERNING IRAN – THE REALITIES OF MACRON’S LIMITS AS A STATESMAN – IRAN AND TRUMP AND WHY THERE IS HATRED THAT WILL NOT GO AWAY – THE HYPE VERSUS THE UGLY REALITIES OF JUSTIN TRUDEAU’S FOREIGN POLICY – CHRYSTIA FREELAND, CANADA’s TRULY UNPLEASANT FACE ON THE WORLD   Leave a comment

John Chuckman

EXPANSION OF COMMENTS POSTED TO AN ARTICLE BY MURRAY BREWSTER IN CBC NEWS

 

“How Macron gave Trump — and Trudeau — a lesson in the uses of power

Macron’s intervention between the U.S. and Iran was an example of practical diplomacy in action”

 

https://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/g7-macron-trump-trudeau-iran-1.5263474

 

While I applaud Macron’s effort, I think it pretty much was dead on arrival.

That should not surprise because Macron, on a whole range of matters, has failed as an effective statesman, despite the manicured looks and high-blown way of speaking with echoes of prestigious French post-secondary education.

Trump’s reasons for being so intensely hostile to Iran have nothing to do with anything Iran has done, and they certainly have nothing to do with France. Trump cannot relent because he is paying a “quid pro quo” for support to keep him in office, support received in the United States from powerful oligarchs.

As far as Iran’s position, it is straightforward and realistic. Remove the sanctions, and we can talk, talk as equal states, not as master and servant.

In recent days, Iran’s admirably eloquent Foreign Minister, Mohammad Zarif, has been referring to America’s illegal sanctions as “economic terrorism.” You would be hard put to come up with a more apt description of them.

Iran has always been willing to talk to the United States. However, they are not willing to talk with guns pointed at them. And how can you open a negotiation about anything when the other party has just broken its solemn word on the last important agreement you negotiated? It isn’t even reasonable to expect anyone to do that, but who ever accused Donald Trump of being reasonable?

Or, in an even more extreme case, the man who actually sets the pace for Trump’s chaotic behavior towards Iran, Israel’s Netanyahu.

It is almost inconceivable that Trump will remove sanctions. They result from his personal need conceived of as national policy, a policy completely at odds with the genuine long-term interests of the United States, interests which absolutely include good relations with a very large and important country.

But an extremely narcissistic man like Trump magnifies personal need into something unrecognizably greater than what it is, like a bizarre parody of the Roman Catholic doctrine of Transubstantiation which says the wafer and wine during Mass become Christ’s actual flesh and blood. He does truly see himself as indispensable, although we have yet to see a single instance of that except in the generation of confusion.

The American sanctions are illegal and completely unwarranted – Iran always met its obligations under the nuclear treaty Trump impulsively tore up with no regard for the concerns of the treaty’s many other important signatories.

Also, the talks Trump wants, appear to have an agenda way beyond the 4-year old nuclear treaty. That agenda appears to be about Iran giving up its important missile-development program, and nothing on earth could make Iran do that.

Iran has now shown dramatically, in at least two incidents during America’s campaign of intimidation and threats, just how important its missile development is. One of these was the downing of America’s largest and most advanced drone as it entered Iranian air space at night with its transponders illegally turned off.

America’s threat with a naval armada has also been affected by Iran’s missiles. The aircraft carrier Abraham Lincoln is staying about 600 miles away from the Strait of Hormuz. Why? Iran’s anti-ship missiles line its coast.

Iran also has plans for space, and why shouldn’t it have? That’s every country’s prerogative and represents important future ways for doing a great many things we now do on earth.

They’d be insane to concede to Trump’s arbitrary demands in this area.

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Now, as far as Trudeau, the hoped-for beneficiary of presumed wisdom from Macron, goes…

 

“Many of you have worried that Canada has lost its compassionate and constructive voice in the world over the past 10 years.

“Well, I have a simple message for you. On behalf of 35 million Canadians, we’re back.”   Justin Trudeau after his election.

 

That quote actually made me a little queasy.

Constructive voice back? Just where do we see that?

Supporting Saudi Arabia and selling them weapons to use in Yemen and to put down domestic dissent?

Supporting America’s ugly campaign against a twice-elected President in Venezuela?

Adding to America’s new pressures against Cuba, a country with which Trudeau’s father, Pierre, had formed a special relationship decades ago?

Sending tanks to the Baltic states to butt up against Russia’s border for no conceivable reason beyond America’s efforts at intimidation?

Sending a warship into Russia’s “backyard,” the Black Sea, for no good reason?

Sending a warship through the Taiwan Strait, an act guaranteed to offend China?

Arresting a high-level Chinese executive on American say-so, the same America pursuing a massive, multi-front trade war against China, one having no purpose beyond trying to extract unearned special trade benefits for itself?

Supporting the horribly incompetent and corrupt Poroshenko government in the Ukraine? A government which, among its list of sins, supported outfits like the genuinely neo-Nazi Azov Battalion, effectively incorporating it into the national armed forces? And a government which made no effort at all to make peace in Eastern Ukraine and embrace the solution to that conflict set out clearly in the Minsk Accords?

Oh, I could list more, but you can see what an impressive record it has been.

Even appointing someone with the views and attitudes of Chrystia Freeland to be our Foreign Minister and represent us in the world? She is, quite literally, Stephen Harper redux.

See:

https://chuckmanwordsincomments.wordpress.com/2019/07/14/john-chuckman-comment-what-every-canadian-should-know-about-canada-foreign-minister-chrystia-freeland-and-what-justin-trudeaus-sad-legacy-as-prime-minister-will-be/

Oh, and there’s that stunning instance of Trudeau’s suddenly flying down to Washington to plead with Trump for help with China. Yes, that’s right, Donald Trump, undoubtedly the single most hated man in all of China, someone literally enjoying a status about the equivalent of a housebreaker with a loud foul mouth? And our leader judged that as something worth doing? What can you say about such astounding naiveté and just plain ignorance?

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Response to a comment which insisted Trudeau’s government had spoken out about Saudi Arabia:

Just silly.

There was the tiff over a Freeland remark about women. And Trudeau and Freeland scurried quickly away even from that.

Nothing of substance. Substance, as in Saudi Arabia’s many war crimes, its mass killing, and its use of capital punishment on teenagers? Nothing at all.

Indeed, that tiff was actually a bit of gong show so people back home who do not follow events more closely could say things like you’ve just said.

And I’ve seen photos on the Internet that sure look like the light tank/armored cars we keep selling the Crown Prince, photos of them serving in Yemen.

 

Posted August 29, 2019 by JOHN CHUCKMAN in Uncategorized

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JOHN CHUCKMAN COMMENT: CANADA’S JUSTIN TRUDEAU MAKES A FOREIGN POLICY SPEECH – HE NEEDN’T HAVE BOTHERED – IT’S FULL OF CLICHES AND EVEN OUTDATED TERMS AND IT EMBARRASSINGLY REVEALS HIM AS THE POSEUR THAT HE IS – MY CONCLUSION: AT THE VERY LEAST, TRUDEAU DESPERATELY NEEDS A NEW SPEECHWRITER   Leave a comment

John Chuckman

COMMENTS POSTED TO AN ARTICLE IN CBC NEWS

 

“Trudeau rails against Conservatives in foreign policy speech

“’They envision a world where Canada flirts with the forces of populism,’ says PM of Tories”

 

‘They envision a world where Canada flirts with the forces of populism’

Well, for me, someone with an abiding interest in international affairs and who prides himself a little on his knowledge of them, those words of Trudeau’s pretty much top everything stomach-churning he’s ever said.

Please, who is the world’s premier example of contemporary “populism’?

Donald Trump, of course.

Now, can you name a single significant policy of Trump’s that our wonderful team of Trudeau-Freeland departs from?

Overthrowing an elected government in Venezuela? Freeland chairs the outfit created by CIA to help do it, the Lima Group.

Saudi Arabia’s many horrors from killing women and children in Yemen and in Saudi Arabia, in efforts against minority Shia, to record numbers of beheadings and to a grisly murder which implicates the very leader of the country?

Canada’s heroic response? Never say a word about the horrors of Yemen and never say a word against a man who is perhaps the world’s most horrific leader today (a man beloved by Trump and Netanyahu), and keep selling those light tanks to him, baby!

America’s absurd and truly dangerous attacks against China on a half dozen fronts? Hey, if you’ve heard Trump’s words on the subject, no need to listen to Freeland’s feeble hinterland echo.

Russophobia? A Freeland speciality. Unwarranted attacks on Iran? Boy, she’s made Ottawa an echo chamber for that.

And, of course, we’ve actually had the boy wonder fly down to Trump to plead for special help with China, help on a problem caused by Trudeau and Freeland themselves. Very impressive recent background for giving a speech on ugly populist leaders.

Trudeau’s speech is so disingenuous, so vacuous, I’d literally vote for anyone but him.

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Well, there’s one thing we know for sure, Trudeau is not an “Isolationist,” a word from 1930s America which truly has no meaning anymore, but there’s still room for it in a Trudeau speech on foreign policy.

It applied to Americans who thought America should stay home and mind its own business. America hadn’t yet quite become a global empire. That came with the end of WWII.

They were mainly conservative types, but not exclusively.

But, just look at what the Right gives us today in America.

The likes of Trump, Bolton, and Pompeo, ready to tell everyone else on the planet what they should do and how they should do it, with the threat of serious economic consequences or military action against them, if they don’t.

That’s as far from Isolationism as it gets, and there is absolutely nothing good to say about it. It actually is behavior reminiscent of the ugly forces America struggled over going to war with in the 1930s, forces so ugly that opposing going to war with them gave Isolationism its enduring bad name.

I say we know Trudeau isn’t an Isolationist because he loyally and faithfully serves Trump in every significant part of foreign policy.

I really think Trudeau needs a new speechwriter. These are half-ridiculous words.

“Isolationism” doesn’t even exist anymore as a movement. The word is dated and almost meaningless. And Trudeau tries to apply it where it wouldn’t fit under any circumstances.

But if it did have a place today, it would actually be preferable to supporting the Trump-Bolton-Pompeo axis of violent interference in the affairs of others, something to which Trudeau makes no objection, and is, indeed, a willing helper.

A threadbare speech, full of clichés, plainly outmoded concepts, and earnest efforts to position himself as a “good guy.” A threadbare speech from a threadbare leader.

Sorry, Mr. Trudeau, you can’t be both, “one of the good guys” and a proved incompetent, a fighter against dark forces and a ready helper of Trump’s. The mix is just plainly ridiculous.

___________________________

Response to a comment saying, “Cee Bee Cee has forgotten how to act like a neutral observer and just report the news instead of having anti any party view which is not liberal”:

In case you hadn’t noticed, all news sources have editorial content as well as journalistic observations.

And all news sources, all, come with one form of bias or another.

On the whole, I think CBC Online does a pretty decent job, and its comment policy is generous compared to most, and I do a lot of reading of stuff from all over.

________________________

Response to a comment saying, “He has no standing with the international community”:

Although I’d hardly choose, as you do, an example like the brutal and not-very-open Bolsonaro avoiding a handshake with Trudeau to cite as evidence, that is very much the case, Trudeau has no standing.

But I must add that it is only a handful of Canadian Prime Ministers who enjoyed such status, men whose efforts and achievements in large part have been ignored by Trudeau and Freeland in their roles as Washington’s willing helpers from the North.

As a country, sadly, we don’t have a big international following anymore because we have no Lester Pearson or Pierre Trudeau or Paul Martin to earn it for us. And that was true for Stephen Harper. He was unpopular internationally even though not regarded as the lightweight Trudeau very much is.

Internationally, in general, I think we are viewed pretty much as what we’ve become, a kind of big resource-rich colony of the United States with a fairly timid international voice. Why would important international leaders need to listen to a weak echo of the noisy, in-your-face United States?

Trudeau’s stature isn’t, I think, all that much different than that of Ivanka Trump, someone who also likes to play at being a leader and is close to being laughed off the stage as she leaves events, although, of course, he is elected, not appointed by Daddy.

Harper wasn’t well regarded either, despite being seen as far more intelligent and driving. He was widely seen as fairly servile to other interests, especially those of Israel, as he very much was, and to an embarrassing degree.

And I’m sorry to say, we don’t have a great deal of promise in Andrew Scheer, although we’ll likely have to take what we get and hope for the best. Early statements on international affairs are distinctly unpromising, although on the home front, there are a few things encouraging.

Only our outstanding leaders gave Canada the ability to “punch above its weight class” in the world. This would have been the case, for example, with Jack Layton, but that quality of man is seen once in a generation.

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Response to a comment calling Trudeau lightweight and extremely arrogant:

The “lightweight” part of your comment is deadly accurate, the rest not so much so.

I see no “undisguised contempt” at all in Trudeau, although he does give off a kind of mild arrogance at times, but it’s the arrogance of a privileged young man who lives off a trust fund, had a world-famous father, and whose political party has lured him farther than he should have gone.

He often, in fact, gives off an almost cloying sense of a man who wants to be received as a “nice guy.” That ain’t arrogant, but it sure ain’t impressive either.

I see weakness and a complete lack of the kind of talents an effective leader requires.

________________________

Response to a comment saying Xi had no respect for Trudeau:

Well, I don’t know about that, but Xi clearly is exceptionally intelligent and hard-working, and he has given China some remarkable initiatives and projects.

He can’t have a lot of regard for a guy like Trudeau who comes off a bit like Ivanka Trump in world affairs.

 

Posted August 22, 2019 by JOHN CHUCKMAN in Uncategorized

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