Canada rushes in like a bull in a china shop with accusations of genocide and assassination
By Shirley Candappa
Relations between India and Canada have reached their lowest ebb, and relations between the two countries hit rock bottom after Canadian Prime Minister Trudeau, in the Canadian parliament claimed there was strong evidence implicating the Indian government in the killing of Sikh separatist leader Hardeep Singh Nijjar -a Canadian citizen. Singh was gunned down outside a Sikh temple, of which he was President.
While Trudeau claimed he had evidence to back his charge, he has not shared this evidence either with India or his fellow member states in the NATO bloc -nor even the US. Trudeau also expelled a senior Indian diplomat from Canada.
India angrily rejected the allegations and retaliated by expelling a Canadian diplomat, stopping the granting of visas to Canadian citizens and demanding Canada downsize the number of personnel in its High Commission in India.
Despite the shocking nature of the charge and the severity of the Indian response, there has been scarcely a whimper from Canada’s partners in NATO or its ‘Five Eyes’ intelligence-sharing network partners -the US, UK, Australia and New Zealand.
Could it be that Canada had bitten off more than it could chew? That India is too powerful a state to alienate?
Or perhaps, it was our own government’s weak response to Trudeau’s arrogant behaviour, on May 18 this year, when he renewed an accusation of Tamil genocide in Sri Lanka, that emboldened him to publicly charge the Indian government of assassinating a Canadian citizen.
Burdened by its large external debt, Lanka has been forced to restrain its response to insults dished out by many Western countries.
No one denies that thousands of our Tamil brothers and sisters were killed in the brutal civil war. Several thousands of other Lankan civilians -Sinhala, Muslims and Burghers also fell victim to that war.
Again, having gone through insurgencies in 1971, 1989 and the three-decade-long civil war, hardly any Lankan condones the killing of civilians.
The sad fact of the matter, however, is that war is all about killing. Bullets and bombs do not distinguish between armed personnel and civilians.
Sadly, Trudeau thought it fit on May 18 this year, to renew his accusation of Tamil genocide in Sri Lanka and justify the adoption a year ago by the Canadian Parliament of a motion to commemorate May 18 as Tamil Genocide Remembrance Day.
Trudeau’s denunciation was all the more surprising as two days earlier, Canada’sForeign Affairs Ministry informed the Sri Lankan government that “Canada had not made any finding that genocide had taken place in Lanka”!
What then made Trudeau make the unwanted claim? Could it be he was trying to prop up his own falling popularity ratings, as exposed in surveys and polls?
Was he trying to cover up his weak-kneed response to the ‘freedom convoy’ protests? The convoys traversed Canada’s provinces where anti-Trudeau rallies rocked his regime in 2022, at one point police had to evacuate him and his family. Trudeau’s popularity ratings are at an all-time low.
A survey conducted by Research Co. published on July 22, 2023, found more Canadians consider Justin Trudeau the worst Prime Minister of the last 55 years. His father on the other hand ranks as the most popular.
The Angus Reid Institute, another Canadian research firm, put Trudeau’s disapproval rating this month (September) at 63 per cent.
Trudeau’s charge of genocide in Lanka is all the more hypocritical in the face of Canadian genocide on its own indigenous peoples.
The National Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls concluded in its 2019 final report that the Canadian state has perpetrated genocide against its indigenous peoples. For example, the remains of 215 children were found on the grounds of a former residential school in Kamloops, B.C.
Yet, we are still to hear of Trudeau setting apart a day commemorating the genocide of Canada’s indigenous people. Nevertheless, back to the matter at hand -Canada’s allegation that a Khalistani separatist a Canadian citizen- was assassinated on the orders of the Indian government in Canada.
Murder, assassination or killing whether by states or by individuals stand condemned. Interference or meddling in the affairs of independent states too is unacceptable.
Unfortunately, assassinations carried out by states are now all too common today. The US made dozens of attempts to assassinate the late Cuban President Fidel Castro. But no protests from Canada.
Israel successfully assassinated Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat. It still continues occupying the whole of Palestine. Israel denies water to occupied Palestine. It bombs Palestinian refugee camps. We have still to hear Trudeau condemning Israel for the atrocities.
Canadian aircraft engaged in the bombing of Libya. It engaged in regime change in Libya, leading to the assassination of Libyan leader Col. Gaddafi.
The actions of Canada, the UK and France turned one of the most developed states in the Middle East (Libya) into a failed state run by dozens of warlord’s suppliant to Western powers.
What happened in the Canadian parliament recently was a classic case of an arrogant white Western leader attempting to flex muscle on the world stage.
He picked the wrong antagonist. Rather than sticking to small and weak states like Lanka, he picked on India and its no-nonsense leader Modi. He has received what is akin to a thundering slap in response.
India is the most populated country in the world. In size, it is a sub-continent. It is one of the world’s largest markets. Most importantly, the US is looking at India as a buffer to counter their main rival -the rising military cum economic powerhouse China.
There is no way the US is going to dump India in favour of Canada, neither are Canada’s friends in NATO going to stick their necks out.
What is most unfortunate is Canada does not seem to learn from the lessons of the past. Just a few years ago Canada got into a spat with China over the arrest of Huawei Chief Financial Officer at the request of the US. The Canadian Courts released the Huawei Chief. But the incident pretty much ended any hope of Trudeau’s government expanding trade with China.
The latest diplomatic spat with New Delhi will likewise end any immediate prospect of Canada increasing trade and business with India as a replacement for lost Chinese opportunities. AP reports Trudeau made his accusations against India on information passed by the Five Eyes group! But none are backing Trudeau.
Since colonial times, western powers have looked at Asia and the Arab states as their coolies. Suddenly they find the compliant subjects of yesteryear are standing up for themselves and their dignity.
This is what the West finds difficult to stomach. All over the world especially in developing countries Western governments trample on people’s rights, impose and support dictatorships to protect their interests, while at the same time picking on tiny issues, blowing them out of proportion and attempting to create an impression they are the protectors of rights and freedom.
In reality, the West is committing Crimes against Humanity.