Tease the day: When Canada took on the United Nations

Three hostile regions lash out at Canada, and the Conservatives aren’t backing down


AP/Seth Wenig

It’s not every week that Palestinians, North Koreans and Iranians all lash out at Canada. But that’s what Canadian diplomats at the United Nations have endured over the past couple of days. This morning, we learn in The Globe and Mail that Palestinians are threatening Canada with “consequences” if Canadian diplomats don’t side with the Palestinian bid for enhanced status at the United Nations. The National Post‘s Kathryn Blaze Carlson tells us North Koreans are angry with us, too. They’re particularly mad at Guillermo Rishchynski, Canada’s ambassador to the UN, for expressing his disappointment in the Communist regime’s human rights record. Rishchynski earned the ire of Iranians just the day before, when he criticized that regime’s human rights record. The Post reported that, in return, Iran called Canada “racist” and “self-centred.” For their part, Conservatives in Ottawa aren’t giving an inch. With every statement, they’re only reinforcing their positions at the UN—and John Baird, the foreign affairs minister, might well make his case against the Palestinians in front of the UN General Assembly. Somewhere, Lester B. Pearson’s shaking his head. Elsewhere, Prime Minister Stephen Harper couldn’t care less.

What’s above the fold this morning?

The Globe and Mail leads with Canada’s opposition to the Palestinian bid for enhanced status at the United Nations. The National Post fronts the arrest of former SNC-Lavalin chief executive Pierre Duhaime. The Toronto Star goes above the fold with Ontario elementary teachers’ looming strike. The Ottawa Citizen leads with an Ottawa man who, for now, won’t be deported to Gaza. iPolitics fronts an interview with Liberal leadership contender Martha Hall Findlay. National Newswatch showcases a CTV News story about federal food inspectors at the infamous XL Foods plant being told to turn a blind eye to contaminated beef.

Stories that will be (mostly) missed

1. Immigration boost. An internal government document obtained by Postmedia News says annual immigration quotas should be bumped up by six percent a year until 2018. 2. Plastic lakes. A team of researchers found high concentrations of plastics in three Great Lakes—findings that rivalled the most polluted parts of the world’s oceans.
3. Angry North Koreans. Canada’s outspoken UN ambassador criticized North Korea’s dismal human rights record. For that, he received a strong rebuke from the Asian nation. 4. Egyptian conviction. A Canadian man was sentenced to death in absentia in Egypt thanks to his role in a controversial movie about Islam. He’s worried he’ll be kidnapped and sent to Egypt.

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Tease the day: When Canada took on the United Nations

  1. “Somewhere, Lester B. Pearson’s shaking his head. Elsewhere, Prime Minister Stephen Harper couldn’t care less.” Put a big smile on my face this morning, thanks for that.

  2. Cons never got past 16 mentally. Always looking for a fight to prove their manhood.

    • ..while EmilyOne is doing exactly that.

  3. I posted this on FB on Monday. Glad to know some of my beliefs are shared with Maclean’s:

    Harper, Baird and MacKay have made it clear in the media that conflicts arising in the Middle-East ought to be resolved with diplomacy. Perhaps our leaders need a refresher on what the definition of diplomacy actually means. Recall the UK
    embassy getting stormed in Tehran and thus forcing the UK’s hand to shut down their embassy and kick out the Iranian delegates out of West London (Fair play). However at a recent UN General Assembly meeting, President Ima-need-a-job spoke and the UK delegate remained seated! Even after severing their diplomatic roles, the UK showed bits of diplomacy. They thought that listening to whatever he had to say was important enough to remained seated. (BTW – I don’t agree with what he said, but diplomacy is about listening). What did our Canadian delegate do? He got up left. Closed the door to any possibility of diplomacy. Fast forward to today’s article in the Globe. Proof that while our leaders say one thing in the public, their actions go the other way. They say that they must find solutions via diplomacy, so while Palestine bids for statehood through the UN (Arguably the most diplomatic avenue there is), our government aims to block it. Pearson would be turning in his grave.

  4. That “threatening Canada with consequences” headline/link is a bit misleading. When asked if they would “consider closing the Canadian representative’s office in Ramallah” a Palestinian representative said they would cross that bridge when they come to it, but yes, there might be consequences. This comes after several months of Canada threatening to close the Palestinian mission in Ottawa. Technically correct, but somewhat disingenuous.

  5. “Somewhere, Lester B. Pearson’s shaking his head.”

    How on earth would Nick Taylor know what Pearson would have thought about this vote or none-vote?

    Colter, quite reasonably, might think that Pearson would have been on his side. And Colter is a Liberal.

    • You’re right. I have no idea how Lester Pearson would have reacted to any current proceedings at the United Nations.

      • Then why insert such a statement? I am curious about that. What was your thought on wanting to insert that statement about Lester Pearson shaking his head?

        • It was a turn of phrase meant to reflect key differences between Pearson and Harper’s approach to the United Nations. I didn’t intend to posthumously defame or in any way misrepresent a former prime minister.

          • And what would those key differences be if Mr.Pearson was and Mr.Harper is of the opinion that the UN is there to be useful?

            Not a very useful organization which is willing to violate its own resolutions of the past. For what weight would today’s resolution hold (when voted in) if, in the future, it too can be violated at will?

  6. One can be judged by one’s friends AND one’s enemies — if Palistine, North Korea and Iran don’t like you, you must be doing something right.

  7. I pretty sure Lester B. Pearson would have been shaking his
    head but it would have been at the seemingly hopeless situation in the Middle
    East. I don’t recall Pearson displaying this weird knee jerk hatred of
    westerners and Albertans that seems so popular in the east right now. I’m not
    fond of the social conservatism of current version of the Federal Conservative
    party but still consider myself a small c conservative Albertan. All this sort
    of bias does is harden my resolve to never vote for the Eastern Liberal Party and
    NDP. The urge to begin talking about Eastern B*****ds freezing in the dark and
    western separation grows strong. Yes, I know there wasn’t a direct slam but
    this type of hate speak always seems to attach to an Albertan.

  8. Thank you Canada. Bravo! to PM Harper and our UN Ambassador, thank you.
    Now I can borrow this sentence from President Bush: ” To All the Axis of Evil: Bring it on”
    God Bless Canada.

  9. Mr. Harper know that the Palestine and its people are too barbaric and unable to be civilized. They were unable to live in peace and will always attack every non-Muslim countries.

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