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Former NDP Leader Mulclair Says Trudeau Should Retire

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When all hell broke loose in the House last week, those with experience as parliamentarians couldn’t believe our eyes. Speaker Greg Fergus tossed out the Leader of His Majesty’s Loyal Opposition, Pierre Poilievre, on the flimsiest pretenses.

Fergus is highly partisan. We all knew that when Trudeau backed him in the election to replace Anthony Rota), who’d been forced to step down after introducing a former Nazi soldier in Parliament.

When Fergus got caught making a partisan video for an Ontario Liberal colleague, many calls were made for him to resign. He had egregiously breached the most basic rules requiring neutrality in the chair. He’d even made the video in his Parliamentary quarters, wearing his robes of office.

I pleaded that his error was serious, but it was a rookie mistake, and he deserved a second chance. Watching his dreadful performance with Poilievre last week, I regretted defending him.

After Poilievre’s ejection, Trudeau and the company were gloves off. During a campaign, they put on a full-court press worthy of a war room. Other pundits I spoke with were dutifully spun by whatever Liberal had contact with them. They thought they had finally caught a break in their Holy War against the evil Poilievre.

The usual Liberal supporters were out there spinning that Poilievre had done it on purpose to get thrown out. That was nonsense as it was unpredictable that someone who’d “simply withdrawn” the word “wacko” — as requested by the Speaker — would nonetheless be turfed.

Trudeau had called Poilievre “spineless” with impunity

It was unprecedented to throw out the Leader of the Opposition without a clear final warning and unambiguous instructions, especially after Trudeau had called Poilievre “spineless” with impunity.

If anything, getting Poilievre turfed seemed to have been concerted and planned, not by Poilievre, but by the Liberals in cahoots with their Speaker.

My vantage point into that desperate, full-bore Liberal effort to spin this against Poilievre came from an early morning call from a senior Liberal minister. In my line of work, as an observer and analyst of the political scene, knowing and being able to speak with ministers is part and parcel of doing your job well. Being able to call us, in return, is no doubt also part of theirs.

My interlocutor quickly understood that, with my years of experience, no one would convince me that Fergus was right. I was elected for three mandates to the rough-and-tumble National Assembly in Quebec City, where I served as Deputy House Leader, both in opposition and power. I also served as Official Opposition House Leader in Ottawa before assuming the same role Thilievre has today: Leader of the Official Opposition.

I mention all that to reinforce that I know the ropes and the important institutional roles involved. My senior Liberal changed tack when it was clear I thought Fergus had to go. They went all-in, making a negative and personal attack against Poilievre. It was brutal and came off as orchestrated, if not contrived.

It was not just an attack on Poilievre. It was a plea for me to acknowledge just how awful he was. He represents a clear and present danger for our institutions. It had an air of fin de régime, the end of Trudeau’s political era, and it wasn’t going out on a high note.

Trudeau is still lagging 20 points behind.

It may mark the beginning of the end, but Trudeau isn’t about to leave simply because Canadian voters have decided to give him his pink slip. He has options, and he knows it. Sure, hardly a day goes by without an article detailing the plans of one cabinet minister to replace Trudeau or an outside potential successor giving an eloquent speech to the Liberal faithful.

Polls are being published to show which possible new leaders have the most public favor. This is happening against a backdrop of Trudeau still lagging 20 points behind, with nothing to show for his mammoth pre-budget tour or from the budget itself.

However, Trudeau still holds many good cards in his hand. He brought the Liberal Party back to life after the Ignatieff debacle. They owe him everything. He’s not about to be given the boot. He’ll be the only one to decide when and if he’ll leave. He’s won three elections in a row, but he should have noted that Canadians cast more votes for the Conservatives in the 2019 and 2021 campaigns. The writing was already on the wall. He couldn’t, or wouldn’t, decode it.

I know several senior Liberals, both high-level volunteers and MPs with access to Trudeau, who has been encouraging him to consider this is his ‘legacy mandate,’ to be graceful and leave his place to someone else so that the party still has the time to give a new leader a chance in the next election. All say that Trudeau refuses to admit that he may be the problem, much less listen to their heartfelt advice.

Of course, it’s not in Trudeau’s nature to admit he and his hapless administration of Canada could be to blame. Now that the proof is in front of him daily in the polls, how long can he deny the obvious?

The writing may be on the wall, but it’s important to remember that Trudeau could still decide tomorrow to walk across the lawn from Rideau Cottage, where he lives, to Rideau Hall and ask Gov.-Gen. Mary Simon to call an election, and she’d have no choice but to do so.

Those senior Liberal organizers know it as well. The longer Trudeau dithers, the less likely there will be a push by frustrated potential successors to drink from a poisoned chalice. With no time to fully present themselves to Canadians, much less organize properly for an election, they’d be cannon fodder for Poilievre’s Conservatives.

The Liberals I speak with still clutch at the hope that a lot of Singh’s NDP vote will drift over to them when progressives sense the impending doom of a Poilievre Conservative victory. The fact that a considerable cohort of NDP MPs has either quit or announced their intention not to run indicates that there may be far fewer votes to purloin than there may have been before the NDP-Liberal deal and before Poilievre’s ascendancy.

In the meantime, if last week’s shenanigans are any indication, Canadians can expect a brutal, personal knock-down, drag-out fight between the leaders of the two parties that have governed Canada since Confederation. It’s going to get ugly.

By Tom Mulcair, Leader of the federal New Democratic Party of Canada between 2012 and 2017

 

Geoff Thomas is a seasoned staff writer at VORNews, a reputable online publication. With his sharp writing skills and deep understanding of SEO, he consistently delivers high-quality, engaging content that resonates with readers. Thomas' articles are well-researched, informative, and written in a clear, concise style that keeps audiences hooked. His ability to craft compelling narratives while seamlessly incorporating relevant keywords has made him a valuable asset to the VORNews team.

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North Korea Appears To Have Fired A Missile Into The Sea, Japan And South Korea Say

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TOKYO — North Korea launched a missile into the sea on Monday, according to Japan and South Korea, just hours after announcing preparations to launch a rocket into space, reportedly carrying its second military reconnaissance satellite.

North Korea had previously informed Japan’s coast guard of its plans to launch “a satellite rocket” during a launch window from Monday to June 3.

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Korea | News Arab Image

North Korea Appears To Have Fired A Missile Into The Sea, Japan And South Korea Say

Following North Korea’s launch, the Japanese Prime Minister’s Office canceled a missile alert for the island of Okinawa, stating that the missile was not considered to be headed for the region.

North Korea launched its first military reconnaissance satellite into orbit in November of last year as part of attempts to establish a space-based monitoring network to counter what it considers growing US-led military threats. North Korean leader Kim Jong Un later said at a governing party conference that the country would launch three more military spy satellites in 2024.

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Korea | NDTV Image

North Korea Appears To Have Fired A Missile Into The Sea, Japan And South Korea Say

The United Nations prohibits North Korea from carrying out any satellite launches, perceiving them as cover for testing long-range missile technologies. North Korea has consistently claimed that it has the right to launch satellites and test missiles. Kim has stated that spy satellites will help his military to better observe US and South Korean military activity while also increasing the threat posed by its nuclear-capable missiles.

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Korea | Japan Times Image

North Korea Appears To Have Fired A Missile Into The Sea, Japan And South Korea Say

North Korea provides Japan with launch information because the Japanese Coast Guard coordinates and disseminates maritime safety information throughout East Asia.

SOURCE – (AP)

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China Has Threatened Trade With Some Countries After Feuds. They’re Calling ‘The Firm’ For Help

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China | AP News Image

Washington — Business is adept at “the firm.”

The State Department’s eight-person team is leading Washington’s efforts to mitigate the economic consequences for China-targeted countries

It sprang from the scramble to assist Lithuania during a dispute with China over Taiwan two years ago. Today, “the firm” is assisting many governments in dealing with what diplomats call economic pressure emanating from Beijing.

Countries “knock on the door, they call,” Undersecretary of State Jose Fernandez said in a recent interview with The Associated Press. “We run a consulting firm that does not have to advertise for clients, as they come.”

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China | AP news Image

China Has Threatened Trade With Some Countries After Feuds. They’re Calling ‘The Firm’ For Help

Led by State Department senior adviser Melanie Hart, the group assesses risks and creates responses for countries that are cut off or fear losing trade with global giant China. Fernandez said that since the group’s inception with Lithuania, more than a dozen countries have sought assistance from the Biden administration.

The attempt comes as Washington intensifies its campaign to counter China’s worldwide influence, as tensions between the rivals rise.

The Chinese Embassy in Washington rejected the claim that Beijing is exerting economic pressure on other countries, calling it “completely unfounded.” It claimed that the United States was bullying China economically by misusing export regulations, treating Chinese enterprises unfairly, and accusing Beijing of economic pressure.

According to Fernandez, China “uses this tactic repeatedly.” They believe intimidation works, which is why we engaged in it. It was time to put a stop to this.

For example, after a Norwegian jury awarded a Chinese dissident the Nobel Peace Prize in 2010, Beijing stopped purchasing salmon from Norway. Two years later, China blocked banana imports from the Philippines due to a territorial dispute in the South China Sea. In response to Australia’s request for a probe into the origins of the COVID-19 outbreak, Beijing raised duties on Australian barley and wines in 2020.

Then came Lithuania. Lithuanian enterprises’ cargo shipments to and from China were stalled in late 2021 and early 2022, and large European businesses warned them that Lithuanian-made auto parts would be prevented from entering the Chinese market.

That came when Lithuania allowed Taiwan’s de facto embassy in Vilnius to use the name Taiwan rather than Taipei, Taiwan’s capital city, as Beijing preferred. China considers the self-governed island to be part of its territory and has disputed Taiwan’s use.

Instead of caving in, the northern European country requested assistance. The United States and its allies stepped up.

china

China | AP News Image

China Has Threatened Trade With Some Countries After Feuds. They’re Calling ‘The Firm’ For Help

American diplomats sought new markets for Lithuanian products. The Export-Import Bank of Washington granted Vilnius $600 million in export credit, and the Pentagon inked a procurement arrangement with the country.

“The firm” persevered. The State Department serves as the first line of action and can cooperate with other U.S. agencies to access “every tool that the U.S. government has,” according to a department official who requested not to be named to disclose team details.

While it takes years to reorganize global supply chains to lessen dependency on nations like China, the team aims to provide a faster approach to alleviate a crisis, the official said, equating the team to ambulance services that “help you get past that scary emergency time.”

According to the official, the United States may strive to collaborate with partners to assist a country in quickly diverting agricultural exports to new markets, building more cold storage so products can reach further markets, or improving product quality to win admission into more markets.

The support is confidential, according to the person who declined to detail the instruments at the team’s disposal or identify the countries that have sought assistance.

Shay Wester, director of Asian economic affairs at the Asia Society Policy Institute, described it as “a significant and much-needed initiative.”

“China’s growing use of economic coercion to pressure countries over political disputes is a significant challenge that requires a concerted response,” said Wester, who co-authored an April paper on the subject.

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China | Pixa Bay Image

China Has Threatened Trade With Some Countries After Feuds. They’re Calling ‘The Firm’ For Help

According to Wester, answers from other countries demonstrate a high demand for this type of support.

Lithuania organized a seminar on opposing economic pressure last month, and Foreign Minister Gabrielius Landsbergis stated that the action “is to crush the victims by forcing reversal and public renunciation of its policies.”

The Chinese Embassy’s spokesman, Liu Pengyu, stated that the problem with Lithuania was “political, not economic.” It was triggered by Lithuania’s poor faith actions, which harmed China’s interests, not by Chinese pressure on Lithuania.

Fernandez, who attended the summit, praised Lithuania for standing up to China. “Lithuania gave us the opportunity to prove that there were alternatives to the coercion,” he stated.

SOURCE – (AP)

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Canada’s Trudeau Called Out for Failing to Meet NATO Commitment

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Trudeau, Canada, NATO
Trudeau Called Out for Failing to Meet NATO Commitment: Getty Image

A bipartisan group of 23 senators in the United States has written to Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, pressing his country to meet its promise to spend 2% of GDP on defense, amid fears that major NATO allies are not doing their part.

“As we approach the 2024 NATO Summit in Washington, D.C., we are concerned and profoundly disappointed that Canada’s most recent projection indicated that it will not reach its two percent commitment this decade,” the senators stated in their letter. “In 2029, Canada’s defense spending is estimated to rise to just 1.7 percent, five years after the agreed upon deadline of 2024 and still below the spending baseline.”

The unusual letter from lawmakers to a head of state comes just two months before NATO’s next annual meeting in Washington, DC, which will commemorate the alliance’s 75th anniversary as Russia’s war against Ukraine continues.

At last year’s leader-level conference, the allies decided that each member countries should devote at least 2% of its GDP to defense. The senators used the agreement to argue that Canada should follow through on its commitment.

Ted Cruz of Texas

US Senator Ted Cruz of Texas calls out Trudeau: Reuters Image

NATO will suffer

And senators, including Republicans Mitt Romney of Utah and Ted Cruz of Texas, as well as Democrats Jeanne Shaheen of New Hampshire and Chris Van Hollen of Maryland, cautioned that if Canada fails to meet its commitments, NATO will suffer.

“Canada will fail to meet its obligations to the Alliance, to the detriment of all NATO Allies and the free world, without immediate and meaningful action to increase defense spending,” the senators stated in their letter, CNN reports.

Canada is a founder member of the defense alliance, which currently has 32 members. The senators praised Canada’s efforts to NATO on a variety of fronts, including taking the lead in supporting its military operations and creating standards for democracy, economic resilience and human rights.

However, the senators also noted that many other countries are taking the required efforts to meet and exceed the 2% target.

“By the end of 2024, 18 NATO members will have achieved the Alliance’s goal of ensuring NATO’s ongoing military readiness. This is a historic investment in our collective security, spearheaded by NATO allies such as Poland, which has already spent more than three percent of its GDP on defense,” they said.

Canada has long been painted as a nation not carrying its weight

Canada has long been painted as a NATO nation not carrying its weight under Trudeau: Reuters Image

Trudeau has no plan to meet targets

On Thursday, Canadian Defense Minister Bill Blair reacted to the letter, saying that “Canada is on a very strong upward trajectory in defense spending,” adding that “we know we’ve got work to do.”

Blair did not provide a particular date for when the UK aims to meet its 2% objective. “Our job has begun, but there is a lot more to do. “It’s critical that we spend hard-earned Canadian taxpayer dollars wisely,” he stated.

Earlier this year, NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg stated that he expects Canada to “deliver on the pledge” or clarify preparations to meet the target budget. More than a dozen other NATO countries, including Canada have yet to meet the alliance’s aim.

The senators chose to write to Trudeau because, unlike other countries, Canada does not appear to have a plan in place to meet the target, according to a congressional aide. Under Trudeau’s leadership, Canada has long been portrayed as a country that isn’t doing its fair share to support NATO.

With the 75th anniversary of the 32-member alliance approaching, there appears to be renewed pressure on Canada to step up and join the 18 countries on track to fulfill the spending target by the end of the year.

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