The NDP Leader seems to be supporting terrorists. Thomas Muclair appears foolish and small-minded in the Commons, as revealed in the exchange below. Mulcair is rebuked by the Speaker for his words. However the CBC TV tried to misrepresent the exchange, into one of support for Mulcair, when in fact upon examination of the full transcript below, it is Mulcair who lost his grip on his Parliamentary behaviour, and thereby demeaned all Canadians with his performance. (Paul Forseth)
House of Commons Debates
41st PARLIAMENT, 2nd SESSION
EDITED HANSARD • NUMBER 189
Wednesday, March 25, 2015
Mr. Speaker, yesterday the foreign affairs minister claimed that Canada's legal basis for bombing in Syria was “the same basis as the Americans”. The United States justification for war in Syria is that it is defending the Iraqi government.
Mr. Speaker, I have already made it very clear that Canada will pursue its air campaign in Syria on the same legal basis that our allies have been pursuing that campaign without challenge for the past several months.
Our position is that ISIL should be given no safe refuge in Syria. The fact that Canada and its allies strongly oppose the Assad regime is, of course, absolutely no reason to allow ISIL safe haven in Syria, from which it could launch attacks against others.
Mr. Speaker, precisely in Samantha Power's letter to His Excellency Ban Ki-moon on September 23, she says that that is the American justification; that they are helping Iraq and it is at the request of Iraq that they are going into Syria.
The question for us, then, is this: Did Canada receive a formal request for military intervention in Syria from the Iraqi government, yes or no?
Mr. Speaker, I can only repeat my answer.
The Government of Canada is pursuing the Islamic State in Syria on the same legal basis as our allies. They have been pursuing that campaign without challenge over the past several months, and we accept that.
With regard to the specific question, the Iraqi government has expressed its support for our actions and those of our allies. Obviously, our motivation is to protect our country from this terrorist caliphate.
Mr. Speaker, that means the answer is no. They never received a request for military intervention in Syria from Iraq, unlike the Americans, who indicated as much in their letter to the United Nations.
Let us stay with the United Nations because the Prime Minister says that he is following the U.S. model here. The United States wrote to the Secretary-General, as required under article 51 of the UN charter, and laid out its legal case for its planned intervention in Syria.
Has the Prime Minister written to the United Nations, laying out Canada's justification for its planned intervention in Syria?
Mr. Speaker, the government is pursuing this action on exactly the same legal basis as its allies.
I am not sure what point the leader of the NDP is ultimately making. If he is suggesting that there is any significant legal risk of lawyers from ISIL taking the Government of Canada to court and winning, the Government of Canada's view is that the chances of that are negligible.
Hon. Thomas Mulcair: Mr. Speaker, extraordinary. Living in a Canada where that sort of idiocy passes for argument in the House of Parliament.
The Speaker: Order, please. I know that the hon. Leader of the Opposition will want to avoid using terminology like that which can cause a great deal of disorder.
Mr. Speaker, today, the Punjab Legislative Assembly passed a unanimous motion calling on Canada to apologize for the Komagata Maru incident.
The Komagata Maru is a dark moment in Canadian history. The ship was turned away simply because its passengers were from India. Upon returning home, many were arrested or killed.
Will the Prime Minister finally do the right thing, acknowledge this horrific tragedy, and apologize in this House for the Komagata Maru?
Mr. Speaker, the NDP knows that Canada and Canadians have appropriately acknowledged that incident for some time.
I would be remiss if I did not return to the previous exchange, and while I obviously will not repeat the terminology used by the leader of the NDP, if his idea of protecting Canada's national interest is that we do not do everything in our power, legally, militarily, and in terms of co-operation with allies, to defend the interest of this country against the terrorist caliphate, he and I obviously have very different ideas of what the national interest of this country is.