Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Lessons from Durban 2

A commentary on the recent Pierre Poilievre, Parliamentary Secretary Prime Minister Harper, on the recent United Nations Durban II conference was published in today’s National Post.  Entitled Lessons from Durban II, Poilievre notes that Canada was the first nation to pull out of the Durban II conference and to cut off funds for NGO participation. The Voice of the Martyrs supported this decision and publicly said so.

Our experience with Durban II, Poilievre suggests, can teach Canadians two lessons.

First, the best way to support the UN is to insist that it live up to its own ideals. The world body's Universal Declaration of Human Rights offers basic standards of liberty that all its member states should and must live up to -- basic standards that many of Durban II's organizers, including Iran and Libya, openly flout….

The second lesson is that leading can be lonely. When Canada first pulled out of Durban II, we were alone. When Canada first cut off aid to Hamas, we were alone. But others later followed, because we were right. Now would be the worst time for Canada to return to the mushy middle, as we did all too often in the past.

"You have enemies? Good," said Winston Churchill. "That means you've stood up for something in your life." We should continue to march in the right direction, at the front of a growing parade.

If you get a chance, fire off an email or letter to the Prime Minister, thanking him for taking this principled decision especially when no one else was following.

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