Much as I believe that tweeting diplomacy is stupid, and that Chrystia Freeland and her Foreign Affairs Department were foolish to chastise the Saudis publicly in an attempt to shame them into changing their minds on the imprisoned activists, I also believe that backing down would be morally reprehensible.
Former Foreign Affairs minister, John Baird, has called on PMJT to travel to Riyadh to smooth things over....uh--- no.
The Tweets were ill-advised, but they were not wrong. They reflect our stand on Saudi human rights abuses. Sure, the government has not similarly called out all of the other rights-abusing regimes in the world. Does that mean that we should back down on calling out this one? Absolutely not.
You took a stand. Bad timing. Wrong platform. But you hold your ground. Just this weekend a Saudi air strike took out a group of Yemeni school kids on the way back from a picnic and we're gonna start sniveling to them, begging for what? Oil they've already said won't be affected by this dispute?
There is no need to escalate. We don't want to jeopardize the captives, but at the same time, we should not be apologizing for speaking our truth. Maybe apologize for doing it publicly, on such an informal platform, without regard to typical diplomatic protocols, but no-- we should not be stooping before the Prince of Saud and calling him our 'ally'. We are trading partners, with mutually beneficially business interests. We are not friends with the Saudis, I hope. And it bothers me that because this blunder was made by a Liberal government, so many conservatives are willing to yield our values to mend fences with an evil regime.
I am getting to the point where I loathe Justin Trudeau, but this is bigger than him. His government made a mistake and now, on behalf of Canadians, they have to own it. To grovel before the Saudis is to betray our values and while Justin Trudeau doesn't reflect my values most of the time, right now, he represents Canada. Canada believes in human rights. We cannot apologize for that.