Harper, Ahmadinejad and the United Nations - Macleans.ca

Harper, Ahmadinejad and the United Nations

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Using, oddly enough, the same term he employed to question Michael Ignatieff’s decision to wish Brian Mulroney a happy birthday, the Prime Minister explains why no Canadian officials will be in the room when the Iranian president addresses the UN General Assembly.

“It is important that countries that have a moral compass stand up and make their views known. And our absence there will speak volumes about how Canada feels about the declarations of President Ahmadinejad,” Mr. Harper said…

“President Ahmadinejad has said things particularly about the state of Israel, the Jewish people and the Holocaust that are absolutely repugnant. It is unfitting that somebody like that would be giving those kinds of remarks before the United Nations General Assembly,” the Prime Minister said.

“Canada does not want to be equivocal at all in terms of our view on that. We find it disgraceful, unacceptable and we’re going to be absolutely clear on that.”

If, then, Britain and the United States, for instance, fail to walk out this afternoon, do their leaders lack a moral compass? Are they giving Mr. Ahmadinejad legitimacy?

There is, as well, the argument that the Iranian president’s remarks about the Holocaust are an elaborate dodge.