Foreign Minister’s Visit to Ukraine
Canada Plays a Dangerous Game
Foreign Minister Melanie Joly’s visit to Ukraine is a classic example of shamelessness and servility. On January 16 she left for a week-long visit to Ukraine amid a flurry of similar visits from the French and German foreign ministers and a delegation of U.S. senators. During a press conference she gave in Kyiv alongside the Ukrainian prime minister and deputy prime minister on January 18, Joly said “The goal is to make sure that we can contribute to [Ukraine’s] increased capacities, capabilities, in light of the Russian threat and also a further invasion from Russia. Russia is the aggressor and we need to make sure we stand shoulder-to-shoulder with Ukraine.”
Her dishonesty about the reason for her visit not enough, she made a point of stating that she was speaking on behalf of the Canadian people as well as the government of Canada.
What Canadian people might that be? A good many would say, Not in My Name! They would like problems sorted out on a peaceful, non-violent basis which is not the path Canada’s ruling class has taken. Far from having NATO expand further and further eastward and become an actively aggressive warmongering alliance spurring on the dregs of Nazi collaborators in Ukraine to organize insurrections and slaughter in Donetsk and Luhansk republics and Crimea so as to embroil Russia, they would like to see Canada get out of NATO, all Canadian troops and special forces brought home and NATO dismantled.
Prior to departing for Ukraine Joly said in a statement that Russia was jeopardizing security in the entire region and that its “aggressive actions” towards Ukraine must be deterred. She said Canada would work with its “international partners” “to uphold the rules-based international order and preserve the human rights and dignity of Ukrainians.”
Speaking like a handmaiden of NATO and the U.S. her words are cringeworthy. International rule of law is based on the Charter of the United Nations, not on the dictates issued by the U.S. according to its self-interest. While the U.S. has broken its commitments to Russia about NATO’s eastward expansion, news reports indicate that Russia wants assurances that Ukraine will never be allowed to join NATO; that NATO members will have no permanent forces or infrastructure based in Ukraine; and for a halt to military exercises near Russia’s border.
As for concern about the human rights of Ukrainians Canada speaks about, this too is a ruse. Thousands of people have lost their lives and been injured since 2014 and there are tens of thousands of refugees in the region as a result of U.S. instigated “colour revolutions” and many more people will be slaughtered if the U.S. plans for more insurrections go through.
Reports inform that Canada has also dispatched a new contingent of special forces to join its 200 plus troops already in Ukraine working with Ukraine’s military. According to “sources” quoted in news reports, the special forces are to help develop plans to evacuate Canadian diplomatic personnel in the event of a Russian invasion, among other things.
The field of expertise of Canada’s Special Forces at the time they were sent into the war against Afghanistan was said to be hostage extraction. They even trained the Ukrainian special forces in this field of expertise. Canada never explained what happened to its special forces when the U.S. abandoned Afghanistan leaving its partners and collaborators in the lurch and the Ukrainians it had trained had to go in to rescue Canadian collaborators. Perhaps by putting its own special forces in place ahead of time Canada is anticipating a repeat in which the U.S. leaves it and other so-called partners in the lurch once again and everyone scrambles to fend for themselves?
Joly also announced Canada is increasing its financial assistance to the Ukrainian government. Asked whether Canada would be supplying weapons to Ukraine as well, Joly said the government was discussing the matter and still considering its options.
This is a government that makes secret agreements with the U.S. imperialists and NATO behind the backs of Canadians. Even the Parliament which has been converted into a lame duck in every sense of the word — as ineffectual and unsuccessful as can be — is not privy to any foreign policy decisions. Nonetheless, Joly speaks as if she represents the people of Canada.
As she and Prime Minister Trudeau have done before, Joly threatened “serious consequences,” including coordinated sanctions against Russia with allies should it attack Ukraine, even though it is NATO which is trumpeting to the world that it is preparing to attack Russia and has stationed its troops threatening Russia’s borders. For its part, Russia denies it has any such intention, with Putin demanding that it is NATO that must scale back its troops and weapons in the region.
What is Canada’s aim? Certainly not peace. Joly said Canada was firmly committed to seeing Ukraine join NATO — a violation of the pledge the U.S. made to Russia at the time of the break-up of the Soviet Union. Just days earlier, NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg stated the same thing, saying he rejected any proposal that would stop NATO’s continued eastward expansion or limit its deployment of troops and weapons in the region.
Later this week Joly will travel to France and Belgium to meet with the foreign ministers of other NATO countries and the European Union as well as with Stoltenberg where, in the name of “deterrence” and even “de-escalation,” she will contribute to the dangerous situation triggered by U.S. and its aggressive military alliance NATO. Canadians can expect more sabre-rattling against Russia. While this contributes to raising tensions and the danger of war, the real question is what the U.S. and Canada hope to achieve? What is their exit strategy if Russia refuses to blink in the face of their brinkmanship?
The Government of Canada has no mandate for this from Canadians. What is needed from the government of Canada is to de-escalate the dangerous situation the U.S and NATO have created, not inflame it. There is no honour in being a handmaiden of the U.S. desperation which is leading it into an abyss and embroiling humankind in disasters of a kind not yet experienced.
Demand Canada Get Out of NATO!
No Arms Sales to Ukraine!
No Special Forces or Troops to Ukraine or to
Shore Up NATO Forces on Russian Borders!
(TML Daily, posted January 19, 2022. With files from news agencies)