Canadian Politics from Canada's Centre

Wednesday, August 30, 2006

Open Letter to Prime Minister Harper

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Dear Prime Minister Harper,

I am writing you to express my thanks to you for your principled stand on the Israeli-Hezbollah war. In spite of polls which showed that it would have been politically expedient to criticize Israel for "disproportionate or unmeasured force," you took the moral high ground and stood by Israel.

While Bloc, Liberal and NDP MPs were marching with anti-Semites, supporters of terrorism, and other assorted criminals advocating for violence against Jews, your government stood out. The media lied to make you look like a jerk, and the editorial pages were very harsh. Nevertheless, you stood your ground, and as a Jew and as a Zionist, I appreciate that and am grateful to you and your party.

In the past, I've identified strongly with the Liberals. In high school, I thought I would study finance, partly as the result of seeing Paul Martin rise to the top through the Finance portfolio. (I didn't know he was also involved in dirty infighting and was sketchy about Ad Scam.) Furthermore, a man I hold in the highest respect, Irwin Cotler, is a Liberal who embodied what I saw as justice and a values-based approach to politics.

Recent years have seen me get more involved in political life. That means I've been informing myself through lots of reading, and trying to share those things I do know or believe by my writing. That's how, amongst other things, I've come to understand that Paul Martin's government started to change the disgusting trend in Canada's anti-Israel UN voting. I applaud your continuation and development of Martin's break with previous Liberal voting. And while I disagree with Stockwell Day on a variety of issues, such as the gay community's civil rights, I am again genuinely grateful for your Minister's support of Israel.

However, I have difficulty associating myself with a party known for its poor environmental stance (and whose Minister of the Environment is from the oil industry). With a party too closely associated with big industry, with opposition to gay rights and abortion rights (though I recognize the important step forward the party's taken in dropping abortion from its agenda).

To conclude, I'd like to thank you again for your support of Israel and of the Jewish people in our time of need. You've earned yourself and your party a strong supporter, even if I can't bring myself to join it, for the reasons stated above. As a Jew, I feel that the issue most pressing for me in Canadian politics is our foreign policy vis-a-vis Israel. I'm proud to say that my vote for the Conservative Party last election was justified, and equally proud to say that I will vote Conservative again should the Opposition topple your government this fall. (Incidentally, I wish you'd recruit Irwin Cotler to the Conservative Party of Canada, though, so that I could vote both for the party and the person, as opposed to just voting for the Party. Neil Drabkin is a decent guy, and he debates well enough, but he's kind of generic.)

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Here are some related articles:

Jason Cherniak on the PMO
Lebanon Ceasfire: Israel gets Shafted
Canadian Politics' Jo McNair on Canadian Politics

This article and related articles are archived in the topical categories , , , Israel, and the .Go back home


At 10:05 a.m., Canadian Politico Blogger Scott Tribe said:

I'm not going to get into the argument again over "disproportinate force" again, but C'mon Gab..saying that Liberals and NDP and BLoc were marching with supporters of terorrism is a tad over the top.

Sure, there were a few Hezbollah flags in the anti-war marches, but to paint the entire Arab and Lebanese community who were in those marches as all being "Anti-Semites and supporters of terrorists" is ridiculous. (Arabs are a semitic people too, as you surely know.. so accusing them of being anti-semitic is an oxymoron).

At 5:53 p.m., Canadian Politico Blogger lecentre said:

Published :). Sorry for the delay. As to Libs, NDP, and Bloc marching with them... How else do you describe Gilles Duceppe, Boisclair, Denis Coderre, people waving the NDP colours? As to "anti-Semitism" it is perfectly reasonable to accuse [some] Arabs of anti-Semitism because the accepted usage of the term is in reference to Jews. You'll find people generally refer to racial profiling, or racism, when the people being discriminated against are Arabs. And I never accused all Arabs/Lebanese of being anti-Semitic ... though if you saw pictures of the rally where "some" (try 30+) Hezbollah flags were present and where the tone of the "peace" rally just focused on how bad and evil Jews were...

As to Harper's position being calculated, kindly tell me who has greater voting numbers: Jews or Arabs? If anything, the opposition is using base calculations, which even French Canadian editorialists have recognized.

You want more? Check out the recent op-ed by a former Pequiste Minister and lifelong sovereignist who just this week came out to vehemently condemn the rampant anti-Zionism in the Separatist movement (also the crass anti-Americanism). It was printed in La Presse.


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