"According to the Israeli Government, Israel now has no better friend in the world than Canada". So said The Honorable Jason Kenney, Secretary of State for Multiculturalism and Canadian Identity, to Tamar Yonah on Israel National Radio's Weekend Edition show on Sunday.
Kenney stated that his Conservative party, which is hoping to maintaining power by winning the upcoming Canadian elections this October 14th, is taking a stand on anti-Semitism by being the first country, even before Israel, to refuse to go to the 2009 United Nations World Conference Against Racism to be held in Geneva, Switerland.
Minister Kenney called the conference, 'The Durban II Hate Fest', referring to the last conference that took place in Durban, South Africa in 2001, an event which spent a majority of time castigating Israel. At the end of the Durban conference, several countries voted to reestablish the controversial UNGA 3379 resolution from 1975, equating Zionism with racism.
The Minister stated that the World Conference Against Racism has been "completely perverted beyond it's objectives of combatting intolerance. In fact, what it's doing is promoting intolerance, particularly the most pernicious and durable form of hatred which is anti-Semitism." He strongly stressed the fact that his party is acting based on morality, choosing to stand with Israel out of an interest in justice rather than a need to cater to a Jewish constituency. "Ours is a party which historically has very little support from the Jewish community. We're taking these positions, not for any domestic political reason, but for reasons of principal."
When asked about the stance Canada takes on the Mid East Conflict, Kenney said that Canada supports, "as a matter of policy, a two state solution, with long term stability and security for Israelis, with a viable Palestinian State" and hopes for a long lasting peace. He prefaced his statements by rejecting comparisons between Israeli defense measures and Arab aggression, saying he rejects completely "the bogus language of moral equivalence, that draws an equivalence between terrorism and counter terrorism."
"Those who attack Israel do not seek a political settlement in peace, they seek the destruction of Israel."
Kenney added that Canadian Prime Minister Harper has stated many times that, "Those who attack Israel do not seek a political settlement in peace, they seek the destruction of Israel." Yonah responded by suggesting the impossibility of a two-state solution, stating that Israel would not survive such a solution, as every major Israeli population center would be brought within the range of Arab rockets and missiles, including Israel's major international airport. Yonah requested that Kenney pass her message on to his government, which he agreed to do.
Minister Kenney was also asked by Yonah what stance Canada took on a possible melding into a future 'North American Union', a quasi 'European Union" like entity where Canada, Mexico and the USA could possibly come together under an umbrella government. To hear how he responded, and to find out how to vote in the elections if you are a Canadian citizen living abroad, click HERE to listen.