Justin Trudeau, Chrystia Freeland, François-Philippe Champagne and David Lametti all claim they are “working tirelessly” secure to the release of two Canadians detained in China – Michael Kovrig and Michael Spavor.
If the government truly wanted to move heaven and earth to secure their release, why did Justin Trudeau give away every ounce of leverage over China then cowardly beg US President Donald Trump to step in and clean up his mess.
The Prime Mistake (h/t Brian Lovig) and his merry band of fools are doing what they do best – virtue-signal – while these two men rot in a Chinese prison.
For example, on December 21, 2018, then-Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland issued a press release saying,
“We are deeply concerned by the arbitrary detention by Chinese authorities of two Canadians earlier this month and call for their immediate release.”
Almost a year later, on December 9, 2019, Freeland’s replacement, newly anointed Foreign Affairs Minister François-Philippe Champagne, issued his own version of Freeland’s press release.
“These two Canadians are and will remain our absolute priority. We will continue to work tirelessly to secure their immediate release and to stand up for them as a government and as Canadians.”
Both Freeland and Champagne think asking other nations to publicly condemn China’s actions against these two men is, at best, apathetic.
In May 2019, Justin Trudeau said:
“We will consistently and always stand up for Canadians, particularly these Canadians who have been arbitrarily detained. What we are always focused on is doing things that will help Canadians being detained. That will not change.”
Trudeau pandered non-stop to China since he was elected in 2015. His government does nothing but issue press releases about Kovrig and Spavor’s detentions. If that’s “standing up for Canadians” then yes, they’re “working tirelessly” to free these men.
But talk is cheap.
It’s our actions that matter and Trudeau’s actions tell a very different story than one of “standing up for Canadians.”
Trudeau now says tariffs designed to prevent China from “dumping” steel in Canada will “not be permitted to stand in the way of these historic private sector investments.”
Those “historic” investments include LNG Canada awarding China the contract to build liquefaction trains, accounting for 50% of the $17 billion total cost to build Kitimat’s LNG Canada plant.
A year prior, Trudeau stood before Canadian steel workers at a Hamilton steel plant and gave his solemn promise that the Trudeau government would bring in and enforce “new regulations to crack down on countries like China that dump their steel and aluminum in foreign markets at unfairly cheap prices.”
A Trudeau promise, solemn or otherwise, means about as much as a preacher saying “And finally” during a sermon – absolutely nothing.
According to industry associations, Trudeau’s China reversal will cost hundreds of thousands of Canadian jobs but, as we learned through the SNC-Lavalin scandal, if jobs aren’t threatened in Quebec they simply don’t matter.
On December 18, 2019, Trudeau gave China National Offshore Oil Corp. approval to search for oil off the coast of the Maritimes, leaving our Canadian energy companies out in the cold.
Now that Trudeau’s non-stop pandering to China has failed to secure the release of Michael Kovrig and Michael Spavor, The Prime Mistake is begging US President Donald Trump to not sign the US trade deal with China until Kovrig and Spavor are released.
Would Trudeau threatening the loss of Chinese jobs and Canadian investment be enough to secure the release of Michael Kovrig and Michael Spavor?
It’s possible, but we’ll never know.
Trudeau chose to pander to China’s bullying when he should have stood up to it instead.
Our prime minister’s cowardice comes at a cost, but it’s one Kovrig and Spavor must pay.
How exactly is that “standing up for Canadians,” Mr. Trudeau?
Michael Kovrig and Michael Spavor are dying to know.