August 31, 2006

Scott Brison Get Off that High Horse

Did Scott Brison just compare Michael Ignatieff to Fred Flinstone, Stockwell Day?

Oh no he didnt...

Scott Brison talking about Gaffes is downright hilarious

Hey Scott, do you know what the pot calls the kettle?

First there is Blackberry Booboo

Then there is Kiss My Ass Biotch

Let’s not forget the "Paul Martin is the Worst Minister of Finance until he gives me a Job"

And that is ALL before we get to the all the Liberal Party Gossip Hour Gong Show Stories...

So Scott, at least Michael is new to politics, you have been screwing up for years, so I think the the term for it is STFU, which last time I checked, was a university in BC…Simon T Fraser University...right Angela?

This is what Michael ACTUALLY said... I expected the smearing from Tories, not from Scott Brison

Q: If you lose the Liberal leadership race, will you run for the party in the next election?Ignatieff: Depends who's leader.

Q: Have you indicated there are some that you would not run for?
Ignatieff: No. It really is that I have to look what I am looking at.

Q: Your track record, your history is that you move on to other projects again and again and again.
Ignatieff: In a rival publication.

Q: Yes it's been suggested that this is just another fling ...

Ignatieff: It's a hell of a fling if it is. I mean, the fling stuff won't fly. It has been brutal.Etobicoke-Lakeshore is very very, tough.

Q: But you won't commit to running in Etobicoke- Lakeshore again?
Ignatieff: I like to serve my constituents well. But you're asking me an anticipatory, hypothetical about the situation that prevails on the 3rd or 4th of December I am quite confident I will win.

Q: But do you have a commitment to the Liberal party long term?

Ignatieff: I've had a commitment to the Liberal party since I was 17. And my commitment to the Liberal party continues. But there are all kinds of ways you can stay committed and involved and active in the Liberal Party of Canada without being an MP.

Q: Without being an MP?

Ignatieff: Being an MP, without being an MP. I have been a Liberal all my life. When I go into rooms, people are glad I am in the room because people have read stuff Ihave written which has contributed to their sensibilities to be a Liberal and what Liberal philosophy is. There are all kinds of ways I can serve the party. Don't doubt my devotion to the Liberal Party of Canada. You wouldn't do this occasionally difficult job if you weren't seriously committed to it. [...]

August 28, 2006

Au revoir M. Sauvageau

Nous avons tous appris le triste départ de M. Benoît Sauvageau, député de Repentigny à la Chambre des Communes. Les gens de Repentigny ont perdu un député qui était dévoué pour les citoyens de son comté.

Nombre de militants libéraux me disaient aujourd'hui que plusieurs libéraux/fédéralistes votaient pour l'homme qu'était Benoît Sauvageau. C'était un adversaire franc et respectable.

C'est également une perte pour la Chambre des Communes qui perd un bon parlementaire. M. Sauvageau était un homme articulé et honnête. M. Sauvageau peut reposer en paix en sachant qu'il s'était acquité de sa tâche avec toute la dignité et l'intégrité que l'on attend d'un parlementaire.

Je souhaite offrir mes plus sincères condoléances à la famille de Benoît Sauvageau, à sa femme et ses quatre petites filles. Je vous souhaite tout le courage dont vous aurez besoin pour traverser cette épreuve. Vous pouvez être fières de ce que votre père a accompli.

Alexandre Plante

Félicitations Luc !!

C'est avec un brin de nostalgie mais surtout avec beaucoup d'enthousiasme que j'ai appris que mon collègue et ami, Luc Fortin aussi connu sous le sobriquet de Clétus, avait décroché un nouvel emploi au gouvernement du Québec. Il deviendra attaché politique du ministre responsable de la réforme démocratique, Benoît Pelletier. Les adeptes de Fuddle Duddle sauront qu'il est notre ministre québécois "favori".

Luc était Vice-Président Communications des JLCQ, donc le porte-parole des jeunes libéraux au Québec. C'est donc sans surprise qu'il ne pourra cumuler les deux fonctions : porte-parole des JLCQ et porte-parole du ministre Pelletier. Imaginez qu'Antonio, qui est Vice-Président Politique des JLCQ, critique vertement M. Pelletier. Ça serait pour le moins incomfortable pour Luc...

J'ai eu la chance de travailler avec Luc, ces derniers temps, sur la campagne de Michael Ignatieff. Ses nouvelles fonctions l'empêchent de continuer d'y consacrer le nombre d'heures comme il le faisait jusqu'à la semaine dernière. Luc continue d'appuyer la candidature de Michael Ignatieff.

En terminant, je félicite Luc pour son nouvel emploi. Pour une fois, le ministre Pelletier et les blogueurs de Fuddle Duddle sont sur la même longueur d'onde, Luc fera un excellent travail.

Bravo et bonne chance !


August 27, 2006


The Green Party has elected a charismatic leader with more credibility on the environment than the Liberals and the NDP put together.

We have to get Elizabeth May elected into the House of Commons. The Green Party has always got the short end of the Canadian political stick because it is not recognized by the Mainstream Media as a credible alternative to the four other parties.

In terms of getting results for the environment, the Green Party could do much more than the NDP, hell, they are the experts. I don’t really like one issue parties all that much, but given the Liberal track record on the environment, I think our party could use a swift kick in the ass on the environment.

Elizabeth May will get results for everyone if we just give her a chance. Her tireless work in the pro-environment lobby has given her the expertise. There is only one riding smart enough to accomplish the job, smart enough to understand how important it is for the Canadian political discourse to elect Canada’s first Green Party member.

Ottawa Centre, currently held by the NDP, is a riding filled with two extremes, hill staffers, and people who cant stand hill staffers. Their spirit helped elect Ed Broadbent when others thought it was impossible to defeat Richard Mahoney (cough!) Nobody will cry over the loss of Paul Dewar, and the green voters, about 5% of the voting population will finally get their voice into Parliament. I have to ask all NDP voters in the riding to park their vote with the Greens in that riding, just this once.

August 25, 2006

Hopefully, the Crusade is Over

Let us survey the damage…This week led by Warren Kinsella, many of the pro-Israeli military crowd took it upon themselves to evict any anti-semitism from the Liberal Party. It all started here on Fuddle Duddle. I read Thomas Hubert’s comment. I didn’t remove it because I do not remove any comments (unless it is spam). In Canada we may disagree with people’s opinions freely and besides, I told him myself the comment was dumb.

I had truly forgotten Thomas’ position on the YLCBC exec. Otherwise, I would have convinced him to remove it as it was not the opinion of the YLCBC what he was saying. The boy is 17. I have since explained to him what was wrong with what he said. He agrees it is inflammatory and based mostly on rhetoric, and bad rhetoric at that. At 17, nobody deserves to be dragged over the coals. The crusaders did not blink.

Then there is Borys. I also feel bad for Borys. He was simply misunderstood. Rumour had it one of Bob Rae’s senior Ontario people was with Borys (I wonder if John Mraz watched Borys light himself on political fire?)…man if there was ever a time to not be misquoted, it was when the Crusaders had their verbal swords drawn and ready. Either way, Borys wanted Hezbollah off the list. Now, rather than saying Borys should quit because he supports a different view than the official Liberal position and his responsibilities as a critic dictate otherwise, we tore him to shreds.

I still believe Hezbollah is a terrorist organization. However, I also believe the IRA is a terrorist organization. Yet, the United States and the British both worked out a deal with Sinn Fein, a branch of the IRA. They negotiated with a terrorist organization then…is the Good Friday Peace Agreement illegitimate?

Also, the leading country in the International Force, Italy, does not support the view that Hezbollah is a terrorist organization. Neither does the UN, who negotiated directly with Hezbollah to craft the peace agreement. I always believed Canada should support whatever the UN does. I think Jean Chretien made that pretty clear. In terms of our list at home, it basically means anybody deemed to be funding this organization or aiding them will immediately have their assets frozen and/or seized. I agree with that, keep Hezbollah on the list. We don’t want Canadian money sent over there to blow shit up. As for never negotiating with them…Borys, Canada never negotiates with Hezbollah or Lebanon or Israel anyway, let the UN do it. Your idea was slightly misplaced.

To quote Mr. Kinsella, well his grandma, "Once you've decided to clean out one toilet," said she, "you may as well clean out all the toilets." I could not agree more. No use in getting our hands dirty twice. We got rid of discrimination against Jews, now lets work on other discrimination. I emailed Warren Kinsella Shoshanna Berman’s comments toward my Italian Heritage, saying she deserved just as much to be forced to resign for what she said…no response…but I don’t worry, he must have been on the other crusade at the time…Come on Warren, time to do what you say.

Then there is Jason Cherniak. The E-Crusader! When brought a cause different than the Zionist one, the zeal tended to fade a little. While admitting being against civil marriage for gays was discriminatory, when asked if this form of discrimination warranted the same consequence as discrimination against Jews, immediate resignation from the party, offered this response: "While I might argue in five years that people who oppose same sex marriage don't belong in the Party at all, we are not yet at that stage." If that was not enough, he offered more. "We all need to recognize that the right to same sex marriage is a very new concept. We need to give people time to get used to it."

In a recent email conversation with a journalist who reads my blog, we discussed the 5-year statue of limitations on discrimination against homosexuals. Her exact comments were “I hope Jason never runs for Parliament.” Double standards are what discrimination is all about Jason.

I call on Warren Kinsella and Jason Cherniak to turn their crusade against discrimination to all discrimination including those who discriminate against Italians like Shoshanna Berman and to those who discriminate against homosexuals like 32 Liberal MPs and a certain riding association president from Ontario who believes we should only deal with discrimination in 5 years. Apologies will suffice. I do not believe we should run anyone out of the party. I think that has gone on long enough in this party.

August 23, 2006

In Defence of Denis Coderre

I was at that march for peace which was called (edit: by its detractors, not by its organizers) a “March Against Israel.” I will not lie. There were Hezbollah supporters among the crowd. The mass majority of the Lebanese people were there to demand an immediate end to hostilities which were, at the time, killing their friends and family.

I will re-iterate once again. Hezbollah is a terrorist organization. They need to be disarmed. They need to be condemned for launching rockets into Israel.

Denis Coderre knew some of the crowd was hostile to his message. He knew he was marching for peace, as did Eleni Bakopanos, former candidate and avid Dion supporter. Stephane Dion’s national Youth Co-Chair Melissa Pierre was at the event as well, as was Brigitte Legault. Our common message was that we wanted peace in the Middle East.

Denis Coderre had the BALLS to go in front of that crowd and CONDEMN HEZBOLLAH for attacking Israel. The boos were fierce. My cheering was no competition for the chorus of boos that he received. Denis was there to march for peace, as were we. I refuse to be condemned for exercising my right to protest using cluster bombs in civilian areas. We do not use a cannon to kill a butterfly. My opinion will not change.

Associating the message of peace of that rally to the hatred of a small minority does injustice to the 20 000+ people who were there to stand for peace. Our voices should have been louder that day. It is a crying shame they were not.

While some are after Coderre’s head, I think it is completely unwarranted to do so. The organizers of the protest called for a demonstration for peace and several politicians heeded their call and showed solidarity. To say Denis Coderre is pro-Hezbollah is to completely ignore his bravery in facing that crowd. It is bad spin. It is lies. It is bull shit. So stop it.

August 22, 2006

Discrimination is bad...All Discrimination is bad

It was quite unfortunate that it turned out this way but a 17 year old was run out of the party for writing his mis-informed opinions. Rather than sitting the guy down and explaining to him that the NDP has filled his head with propaganda, we ran the kid straight out of the party.

I spoke to Jason Cherniak, who has done a good job exposing Anti-Semites in the Liberal Party lately. (Sorry Michelle, I passed)


Let’s make that clear first.

Jason gave me this statement. (All quotes are Jason verbatim)

"I can never support an anti-Semite in any representative position in the Liberal Party. Indeed, anti-Semitism is contrary to the principles that all Liberal Party members are supposed to subscribe to."

I asked him to substitute discrimination against Jews for discrimination against homosexuals. Jason agreed.

“I can never support a person who discriminates against homosexuals in any representative position in the Liberal Party. Indeed, discrimination against homosexuals is contrary to the principles that all Liberal Party members are supposed to subscribe to.”

I then asked Jason if opposing my right to pledge my love for another man in civil matrimony was discrimination against homosexuals. He said yes it was.

I then asked him if 32 Liberal MPs were no longer allowed to hold a position in the Liberal Party of Canada following their vote on Bill C-38.

"While I might argue in five years that people who oppose same sex marriage don't belong in the Party at all, we are not yet at that stage."

When I pointed out the irony in that, he said more…

"We all need to recognize that the right to same sex marriage is a very new concept. We need to give people time to get used to it."

It is right to fire those who are discriminate against Jews but not right to fire those who discriminate against homosexuals…for now.

Mr. Brison, care to make another statement?

August 21, 2006

Liberals Make Big Mistake in Keeping GST at 6%

Liberals Make Big Mistake in Keeping GST at 6%

John McCallum got me pretty angry this morning when he said that if elected, the Liberals would keep the GST at 6%. The entire election campaign, we Liberals said income tax cuts were a better way at re-distributing wealth and we said the Tories got the economics wrong.

Now we admit they were right all along and we know jack shit about the economy, Thanks John!

For the record, I still believe cutting the GST is really a cash grab for rich people. I propose raising it back up to 7, putting that one point to foreign aid, bringing our GDP total to 0.62% of GDP, inching closer to 0.7%

Ignatieff Falls for the Same Trap as Stephane Dion

My dear leadership hopeful has stumbled into a political trap, saying he would work towards making his Cabinet 50% female. With caucus 25% female, it would presently mean that statically, better qualified men would get appointments based on their genitilia. We do not fight discrimination with reverse discrimination. Cabinet appointments should be representative of the caucus you have. Presently, the Liberals have 20% women in their caucus, if Cabinet were to be formed by this bunch, with about 30 jobs to give out, 20% of men would be in cabinet and 75% of women. Tell me how this is good public policy.

As for appointments, sure 50% is fine because the pool is larger. With caucus, you really have to put gender aside and choose the best. In the end, it will be close to representative of the caucus you have.

Get more women elected first. Make a parliamentary program helping women MPs handle raising a child while dealing with the strains of being an MP. I think this should be an quadri-partisan effort, maybe a parliamentary committee. Me and Martha talked a little about this. That interview will be available soon.

August 19, 2006

Line of the week

Line of the week

Mr. Bevilacqua replied that, when Mr. Rae left office, "the Ontario economy was the best economy in the G7."

By Maurizio "I take no lessons from the NDP on how to govern and how to grow the economy." Bevilacqua.

Another zinger…

"There's a sense out there that the Liberals are ready for a generational change with experience and also they want somebody who's been a long-standing Liberal member"

Maybe he meant Power Corporation…they are longstanding Liberal members…and Paul Sr. is getting up there in the age department…maybe it is time for generational change.

Who is beginning to REALLY miss Jean Chrétien? I know I am…GONG SHOW!

Back into hiding…Martha interview will be up Sunday

August 16, 2006

Where is the Napkin?

So the question everyone wants the answer to is “What did Dion promise Orchard?”

This is not about Dion, who is an outstanding guy. However there are some Liberals who do not like the blackmailish way David Orchard does politics. He is making his supporters look like political mercenaries. If Dion falls off the ballot, are Orchard's supporters following Dion or not? Can Stephane make David Orchard sign a “long-term” napkin…errr membership so he can at least stay in the Liberal Party?

August 15, 2006

Hidden Beneath Maurizio’s Decision

Left-Wing Right Wing Hoo-ha

We all know the political spectrum had no influence in Maurizio’s decision to back Bob Rae, unless Maurizio really thinks Bob Rae wants the party to the right of where Michael Ignatieff wants it. So...Why did Maurizio join Bob Rae?

Sorry Libnews, for I am not really surprised.

Jason Cherniak and Rob Edger point out the reason inevitably why Maurizio was going to have to go with Rae. Leaving Greg Sorbara alone in a riding while Maurizio has to fend for himself across Canada could only have predictable results. If Stephane Dion had taken the Harper line on Lebanon, then he would have lost his riding too. Inevitably, candidates must make sure to retain their own ridings.

Why jump ship in the middle of August when you still have money to spend? That is the question everybody is asking themselves. This will not get Bob Rae much media attention since everybody is on vacation. Why the urgency?

I don’t want to toot Quebec’s horn more than I usually do but I think Rae needed Maurizio’s organizers in Quebec as quickly as possible. Bob Rae is without a chief organizer in Quebec right now. We all hope Reine Hebert (#1) gets better as she recovers from an illness. After seeing Yves Lemire (#2) in our office the other day, I asked myself who is Bob’s organizer now?

Maurizio had one organizer of better than average repute in Quebec, Gaetano Manganiello. Is he the kind of guy to run the campaign in an entire province? I would say no. However, Rae’s desperation to find an organizer in Quebec seems to be heating up. Somebody has to find a purpose for Andre Desmarais’ money before December 3rd.

I think Bob needed Maurizio to come on board right away just to help shore up what Bob is trying to accomplish in Quebec. Quebec was supposed to be Bob’s ticket to victory. Against the likes of Frank McKenna and John Manley, it would have been. With surprises like Ignatieff and Dion in the picture, Bob has had his share of curveballs in the province. Now without a chief organizer and half the province no longer attainable at all for Bob, he will take all the immediate help he can get, and Maurizio’s “decision” to back Bob Rae might really be Bob Rae’s “desperate need” to prevent his Quebec campaign from collapsing.

August 14, 2006

Just a few good explanations of Maurizio's choice

Here is a very good explanation of why Maurizio might have chosen Rae...

On a funnier note, a VERY FUNNY article on Maurzio : a man of principles...


August 11, 2006

Booyakasha. Check dis.

LPC Women's Commission Presidential candidate Nicole Foster Woollatt has a great letter to the editor about the importance of recognizing a gender gap in politics. She also talks about the negative ramifications of classifying between "women's issues" and "everyone's issues."

The original story can be found here. I'd respond to it myself, but Nicole FW says it a helluva a lot better than I ever could.

I'm glad to see someone of Nicole's intelligence, energy, and dedication throw her hat into the ring for the National Exec. She clearly understands the purpose of the commission and is going to do an excellent job.

August 7, 2006

The Danger of Self-Defence

Is it so hard to equate death of one innocent person with the death of another? History is colored with historical mass murders based on religion or nationality. People forget the last army to invade Jerusalem and kill all of its citizens was actually European and Christian.
Today more innocent people die on both sides of the Israeli-Lebanese conflict. Who is more wrong? Israel or Hezbollah. Obviously the terrorist organization is the larger contributor to the crime. Therefore, Israel is, in this case, the victim.

Can the victim of a crime ever do harm in defending itself? Canadian law protects those who kill in self-defence. It only does so if their imminent life is at risk. It can certainly be argued that the existence of Israel is at risk. After all, if Iran or Syria were to have their way, Israel would not even be on the map. We all recognize the threat Israel faces. However, one question we fail to ask in the peril around us is, Can Israel defend itself at all costs?

Nobody I know has ever questioned the right of Israel to defend itself. The threat Israel faces is differnt from the ones of old. Israel now fights Hezbollah, Hamas, and Al-Qaeda. Three terrorist organizations whose armies are hiddin among civilian populations of the Middle East. The battle has become more difficult, no question; however, must we, as human beings afford these misguided people the same decency we would afford any prisoner?

Would Israel torture a Hezbollah operative to obtain information which could lead to the return of Gilad Shalit? Can Israel violate the norms of "international law" to defend itself. Basically, can they defend themselves NO MATTER WHAT? I am not saying they do. However, as recent events continue to linger on, and civilian casualties mount on both sides of the border, it is only the innocent ones who will pay with their lives for the indiscretions of others.

I have family who lost loved ones in times of war. We all do. Anytime we know someone who died for the mistakes of others, we seek to take revenge on those who caused the innocent to die. Therefore, it is only natural for Israelis to want every Hezbollah member to pay with their lives for the deaths of their loved ones.

What makes us better than they are? What makes the law-abiding citizens of Israel, Canada, Europe better than barbaric organizations like Hamas and Hezbollah? It is that when we are faced with the opportunity for revenge, we do not let our emotions take over.

September 11th 2001 has done irreparable harm to the psyche of the American population. In the middle of the 1960s, nobody would ever dare think of imprisoning a number of suspected criminals and torturing them "in the name of national security." Today, thgey sit idly as their government commits war crimes on man with no countries to stand up for them. America has become as barbaric as the enemy it pursues.

George W. Bush has already decided the US would ignore Geneva Conventions with the creation of Guantanamo. American people stand silently watching as their own country, which values freedoms and liberties, but denies it to their enemies.

I marched in a demonstration for peace today. Instead condemnations of terrorist actions in Lebanon were met with jeers and insults. It is no wonder the Maronites, Christians and Druze chose not to participate. We must stand side by side ONLY with those who wish to promote peace, no more, no less.

The evolution of human rights is attained the more people realize the differences between themselves is irrelevant. Richard Rorty's words still live true. All blood is worth the same, whether it be Jewish, Muslim, Christian, etc. Once both sides can realize that simple fact, there will be no need for self-defence

August 4, 2006

Liberals Rise from the Dead in Quebec

Apparently I am not the only person outraged with Steve’s (in?)action in regards the Middle East conflict. A poll released today put the Liberals in Quebec back in front for the first time since December. So a party with no leader and 11 different positions on the conflict has pulled ahead of Commandant Steve. Harper won the election because the people chose the devil the Liberals talked so badly about over Po-Paul. With the Liberals crossing ahead of the Tories in Quebec, the Tories must be shaking in their boots.

Two leadership candidates have bucked the Sacred Cow that was hard-line Trudeauvian federalism. Quebec nationhood is widely accepted among most Liberals in Quebec, including he stubborn ones like myself. The fiscal imbalance is something we want to address, and will only promise to fix when we know exactly what we have to do to fix it. Harper won Quebec City because they wanted a federalist who would listen to them and did not want to vote for the Bloc. These PLQ strongholds gave their votes to Harper because he was a man who supposedly came through on promises. And for two weeks, it certainly looked that way.

Bob Rae and Michael Ignatieff have captured the pulse of federalist Quebeckers and must capitalize on it or we risk losing these federalists to the Bloc, where their interests are always second-best. Quebeckers like what they hear from Liberals. Time for us to pounce, not after 3 weeks, not after 8 years, but NOW!

Commandant Steve, you’re on the clock.

Note: Notice how nobody is talking about Jumpin Jack. Good!

August 2, 2006

Barriers Broken by Outgames Will Not Be Forgotten

Some are shocked at the dismal show of support for several events at the Outgames. Some events take place with the stands empty. The logic behind it is rather simple. Take an event like Bridge. Yes, that’s right Bridge is an outgames event. I don’t wanna watch anybody play bridge, just cuz the participants are gay doesn’t mean I am gonna drop everything and go watch people play cards.

Either way, don’t be bothered by the empty stands. Everybody knows the party is not in the arena but at night. Gays are not exactly known for their competitive sports but when it comes to parties, it’s a whole different story of Olympic proportions.

Hanging around some areas of Montreal at night are beginning to put a smile on my face. A genuine smile. To see as many gay people outside the gay village has been a shock for many Montrealers. It was as if gays were “supposed” to be holed up in the ghetto that is so aesthetically called the gay village. Now everybody is “out and about” the city.

However, Saturday night something I saw changed me forever. I was in the middle of another long shift at work scooping ice cream as hard as I could (lol) and in walked 2 men about the age of 30, either way, they could have passed for my age. With them was a young boy named Jamie. It was still early and it wasn’t as busy yet, so I spoke to the clients and you could tell they were from Australia. So as I made the young boy try the ice cream so he could choose what he wanted, I found out these two guys, Michael and Jake were Jamie’s parents. They came to Montreal to visit at the time that coincided with the Outgames. The boy called both of them daddy and it just seemed so natural. I spoke with them for about 5 minutes and I peppered them with questions. (some people know how I can get) They told me how they got a surrogate mother to carry Michael’s and her baby. She signed over custody after the birth and voila, a gay family. You could not wipe the smile off my face Saturday. I had seen it with my own two eyes. If they can have a family, why can’t I?

Although we worked six more gruelling hours that night, I had all the energy I needed. I was always a naysayer for the Outgames. Isn’t singling yourself out only opening you up more to the attacks that you do not really seek equality? I finally realized the Outgames was not about the events, but about the message the gay community was sending by saying we are doing this because we can. So don’t judge the success of the Outgames by the attendance figures, judge it by the barriers that it has broken for the City of Montreal and the many people around the world who they will inspire just by saying “we are here.”

August 1, 2006

Ignatieff Back With a Bang…Tells Israel it Needs to Stop Shooting

Vindication is sooo sooo sweet.

All I can say is WOW. Michael Ignatieff’s Op/Ed in today’s Globe and La Presse was all the proof I need to determine this man can defeat Stephen Harper. Although we are several weeks into the conflict, Michael Ignatieff is the first to propose a concrete solution. The bombing in Cana showed the devastation that this conflict can lead to. The statement is loaded with nuggets of powerful statements and because I am so happy my leadership candidate is on the same side as I am, I will break them down for you.

“The terrible tragedy in Qana, which claimed 57 lives, is thus a victory for Hezbollah. But that is not all. Hezbollah then hopes to draw Israel into a wider conflict which would result in its ultimate destruction. In this terrible struggle, Israel cannot win, Hezbollah cannot lose and Lebanon perishes.”

Making the distinction between Lebanon and Hezbollah is very important. Israel claims to have been bombing Hezbollah so far. However, any neutral observer will tell you now that Hezbollah is stronger than ever, the Lebanese government is powerless, and that the bombings have destroyed the country of Lebanon, but not Hezbollah.

“If Israel persists, there is a danger that it will lose control of the situation. Hezbollah cannot be wiped out militarily. They have support among Lebanese Shiites, because they provide social welfare and have the blessing of the mullahs. They also have political power, having won parliamentary seats in free elections. Further military action by Israel may only strengthen Hezbollah’s political power in Lebanon.”

Oh It gets better…

“Israel must not play Hezbollah’s game. It must defend itself, but to persist in its military campaign would only give Hezbollah what it wants: continuing carnage in Lebanon and weakening world support for Israel. Canada should be saying to Israel that there are no further military options in Lebanon that do not risk destroying Lebanon and ultimately endangering its own security.”

Canada should tell Israel to stop bombing…hmm…well Steve, grit heart, shoshana, and Michelle, we now have a divergence of opinion. Luckily, Ignatieff is on the right side of this one.

You can crap on Michael for seeing ailing relatives, although I find it slightly unclassy. However, give the man credit, he is the first to propose a solution and it is a fantastic one to boot.

“It’s time for Canada to do its part in stopping this march to the abyss. It should call for an immediate cease-fire, authorized by the Security Council. It should line up with the Europeans and moderate Arab states issuing the same call. Under such a cease-fire deal, Israeli forces would withdraw, aerial bombardment would cease and Hezbollah would stop rocket attacks and incursions into Israeli territory.
Once a cease-fire has taken hold, Canada should propose the deployment of an international naval, air and land force to prevent the movement of missiles and other military technology into Lebanon. These weapons come by land through Syria and by sea through the Mediterranean. Such a force should be deployed at all Lebanese ports and land borders. An additional naval force should patrol Lebanese waters. The force should be authorized by the UN Security Council to seize any weapons destined for Hezbollah or any non-state actor in the region.
Such a force would not engage in direct confrontation with Hezbollah or with the Israelis but patrol a buffer zone between them. Canada’s commitments in Afghanistan preclude sending ground troops on this mission, but Canada could participate in the naval interdiction effort in the Mediterranean. Canada’s navy has already played this role in the Gulf and would be well equipped to do so again”

Using multilateralism is the only way to disarm Hezbollah. It worked extremely well when British and Irish police sought to disarm the IRA. Israel has made it so that Hezbollah has more authority than the Lebanese government. With an international force in place, Israel can rest assured that Hezbollah is being targeted and the Lebanese government can re-build its authority over the region.

“The goal here is limited but vital: to create demilitarized zones between combatants and to bar the entry of the advanced weaponry that risks widening the local conflict into a regional conflagration. Once a cease-fire is in place, and the interdiction force deployed, Canada could form a ‘friends of Lebanon’ club, a group of states to work with the Lebanese government to reconstruct the country’s shattered infrastructure. Germany played this role after the Afghanistan war of 2001, and Canada could play the same role in Lebanon.”

Creating a “Friends of Lebanon” would prop up the Lebanese government again and proves once and for all that supporting Lebanon is NOT supporting Hezbollah. Israel itself should be supporting Lebanon. It is only the Lebanese government that can root out Hezbollah but it needs everybody’s help as the task is even more difficult now.

Michael ends the Op/Ed with a passage that left me breathless. It proved to me why the man is not only capable of beating Harper, but capable of taking Canada to the next level.

“We are a country of peace-makers, especially because we are also a country of immigrants, many of whom have come to Canada to escape the horrors of conflict. As a nation of immigrants from the zones of war, we have a special vocation for peace, and it is by exercising this vocation that we maintain our unity as a people. We have a voice that other countries listen to. Let us use it.”