Canada’s strong support of the Middle East’s only Western democracy has been noted by many observers of Canadian politics (in particular by Israel’s intransigent critics). Yet the reasons for that support have not always been so well articulated in public. The Prime Minister and Leader of the Liberal Opposition have done a phenomenal job in making clear why it is in all of our interests to support a fellow democracy and look with a skeptical eye at dishonest efforts like the divestment and delegitimization movements.
Here is a quote from Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s principled comments at the conference for combating anti-Semitism held in Ottawa:
"Whether it is at the United Nations or any other international forum, the easiest thing to do is simply to just get along and go along with this anti-Israeli rhetoric, to pretend it is just about being even-handed and to excuse oneself with the label of honest broker. There are after all a lot more votes – a lot more – in being anti-Israeli than in taking a stand. But as long as I am Prime Minister, whether it is at the United Nations, the Francophonie, wherever it is, Canada will take that stand, whatever the cost.
Liberal Leader Michael Ignatieff’s comments were also welcome, as he noted President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's "utterly unacceptable" comments and threats toward Israel. He said Canada must stand against the "strategic threat" Iran presents not just to Israel, but to the entire Middle East. Click here to read Ignatieff's speech.
Click here for a transcript of Harper's remarks. You can also watch an excerpt from his speech in the video below: