May 21, 2015

It's time to hit Saudi Arabia where it hurts most

Marissa SemkiwArchive

You’ve probably heard about Canada’s $15 billion sale of armoured vehicles to Saudi Arabia that was announced in 2014.

I'm no fan of the Saudis.

But the fact is, this deal will sustain 3,000 Canadian manufacturing jobs over the course of 14 years.

Trudeau's chief advisor, Gerald Butts, has been mocking the Conservatives for making this deal.

But would a Liberal government really cancel that sale? 

Because if not, his criticism is hollow.

There's another way we can undermine the Saudis and create Canadian jobs and prosperity. I'll tell you what it is.

Do you agree? Let me know in the comments.


READ Ezra Levant's bestselling books debunking environmentalist propaganda against the energy industry:

Groundswell: The Case for Fracking

Ethical Oil: The Case for Canada's Oil Sands

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commented 2015-05-24 23:25:11 -0400
Dan, the Saudis brought down the price of oil in response to the theft and sale of oil on the black markets by ISIS.

Cathy – We can’t “cut off” the Saudis. They are too invested in our economy. Not just oil. Universities, businesses, health care … It may be a bit of a myth that they have so much wealth too. Some estimates say their oil will dry up by 2030. That their reserves are drying up. That that is why they made the desperate investment in trying to spread conquest by Wahhabism. And that has largely failed in the west. Also, the royals are rich but their people are dirt poor.

We actually have the Saudis over a bit of a barrel at the moment. They are building huge walls to try to keep out the Houthis and ISIS from invading them and deposing the House of Saud. Do we want ISIS or Iranian-backed Houthis in SA instead of the Saudis we know? The corrupt, west-loving Saudis? Probably not.

I say lets use our advantage to pressure the Saudis to modernize. King Salman may not be in power long and the next in line are considerably younger. Plus Salman is no idiot. He knows the position his country is in, how tenuous his very life.
commented 2015-05-24 23:17:01 -0400
Liza Rosie – My neighbours are Tibetan. From Tibet. He was one of the monks who helped the Dalai Lama escape. He and his wife and family disagree with you. They value their culture but so do they value education for children. So do they value having enough to eat, safe shelter and safety from being beaten by system thugs.

The monk who helped the Dalai Lama escape teaches Tibetan music at U. of T. Far from losing his culture, he has taught it to Canadians. He and his wife have worked tirelessly to build schools in Tibet to better the life of Tibetans. They have worked directly with the Chinese government. The Chinese require they not teach Buddhism in the schools but they do not demand they not practice it at home.

My neighbours think the Chinese are good for Tibet. I know that is not a popular Canadian view but it is their view and they are Tibetans directly involved in helping Tibetans in Tibet. They do not believe education hurts their culture. They do not believe having doctors to help the sick hurts their culture. Sure, it changes the life expectancy, raising it significantly. But the essentials of Tibetan culture need not change. Unless one thinks oppression is essential to culture or that culture ought never change. Some might argue that extending life impacts religious fervour. Maybe it does.

The students of my neighbours schools do better on Chinese state exams than the Chinese. HA!! That’ll show the Chinese!
commented 2015-05-24 17:04:10 -0400
Dan, there is no good reason to trade with Saudi Arabia period. Unlike others here who seem to want to take the cowering approach because of PR. Unreal. The Saudi’s can practically own the entire world and continue with the genocide of millions of people and we will allow the muslim/sharia invasion of our countries as well all for the sake of their oil. This world take over that they want must be backed by the Saudi’s because of the overabundance of wealth. No it’s time to cut them off and rely on our own resources. Using one’s own resources is not shouting in anyone’s face or being hostile, get real. I for one don’t want my country’s money funding terrorism anymore. I’m sick and fed up with all of them Nazis.
commented 2015-05-24 16:21:36 -0400
A market economy – or what passes for one today – trade, and moral absolutes! Now there’s intellectual red meat!
Exploring an interest in Tibetan Buddhism years ago, and among other legitimate reasons, I have an opinion of Red China that causes me to be against any trade with them…but since our middle class was decimated by the loss of the manufacturing sector to crony-capitalist-corporate interests in Asia, and because everything we are forced to buy today is mostly cheap crap made in Asia or some other third world outfit, and because our economy is so bad and because all Western economy’s and individual’s wealth are being plundered and decimated by the central-banking-cabal-scam- how many Hundreds of millions of Canadian taxpayer dollars per day just to service the debt – and because the oil companies – read multi-national-super-conglomerate corporations – have a lock on what we use for energy – or not, and why my recent relief that gas was only a buck-ten a litre instead of a buck-fifty, and wasn’t it the Saudis who opened the taps to bring down the price at the pump which also shut down Canada’s oils sands…
Can someone remind me again why it’s a good idea to trade with these countries…
commented 2015-05-23 23:54:37 -0400
I agree that we have to maintain ties with Saudi Arabia whether we like their moves or not. Better to be on the sharks back than shouting in its face.

Joan regarding your comment about China and Tibet, China may be building schools, but it is with the sole intent of obliterating the Tibetan culture. Cultural genocide in Tibet . The Chinese have a long history of this sort of interference, it is never for anyone’s good but their own. Centuries of this sort of move. We are not new to it. But I still subscribe to being on the sharks back. Reason will never works with certain regimes, but that is not to say we should cut them off because they don’t play nice.
commented 2015-05-23 20:54:39 -0400
Saudi Arabia is not discrete from us but has made tremendous investments in our economy. Boycotting them would so cause more animosity than currently exists but which is currently veiled by polite relations. I’d rather maintain that pretense of civility than engage open hostility. I’d rather use our good relations to exploit SA’s current political vulnerability to pressure them to modernize.

SA may have exported Wahhabism throughout the middle east, to the west and across the whole world but it has not caught on as they hoped in the west and in the middle east has spawned ISIS.

ISIS and shia Iran pose a tremendous threat to Saudi security. We can use that to pressure reform.
commented 2015-05-23 20:48:18 -0400
Ouch, Cathy. Sorry to bruise your ego. I’m not Muslim though.
commented 2015-05-23 19:29:38 -0400
Just like you two muslims right, duh.
commented 2015-05-23 15:17:34 -0400
Terry, well yeah, duh!!
commented 2015-05-23 09:05:34 -0400
A minor mistake. After all, they’re both Muslims, so they both must think exactly the same, right?
commented 2015-05-22 21:06:03 -0400
Sorry, I guess I got that one mixed up. Erdogan is the president of Turkey, not Saudi Arabia.
commented 2015-05-22 16:04:04 -0400
Cathy, you’re obviously privy to insider information on Middle East politics that many of us don’t have access to. When exactly did Erdogan become president of Saudi Arabia?
commented 2015-05-22 14:55:22 -0400
Let’s see how nice Saudi Arabia is going to be to all the suckers buying their oil for overinflated prices when their caliphate gains more control across the world. We are living in very deadly dangerous times that cannot be ignored (which is being generated to a big degree by Saudi Arabia), just ask all the Christians in the middle east, the few who are still alive that is. Heads here will roll just the same as they are in the middle east and North Africa. Boycotting them would not cause any more harm or animosity, than what is already in place, rather would hurt them right where it counts, in their humungous bank accounts. Taking over the world and filling their bank accounts is the only thing this country, under it’s twisted psychotic president Erdogan, is interested in. If it’s appeasement you want towards these bastards, then slowly dwindle away buying oil from them until our oil is running at full speed ahead. And then adios.
commented 2015-05-22 12:51:35 -0400
Joan – but the Dalai Lama is so TWINKLY, and writes all that nice stuff on Facebook in italics with sunsets!
commented 2015-05-22 12:48:41 -0400
Ron: again, I’m making a distinction between the post-colonial cold-warfare-by-surrogate between Comintern players (as you know, Cubans were as big a part of the game as China, backed the Soviets) and Reagan players, and actual colonization. But I don’t think we’re actually disagreeing on anything substantive. And yes, you correctly interpreted my real point about the selective call for boycotts and embargoes, based on their impact on our oil sales. :)
commented 2015-05-22 12:23:22 -0400
I was thinking of Angola where they suppplied and helped the MPLA to power and now steal their oil. Then their on the ground assistance to FRELIMO where they helped butcher the Portuguese and now are taking Mocambique’s coal amongst other resources.. How about in Rhodesia (Zimbabwe) as they trained and assisted ZANLA to chop up all and sundry. The Chinese military was there in person too not just training. How about the massacre at Hot Springs of the small scale diamond miners? Considerably lower? Ask the millions of black Africans in those countries about their great future under China’s exploitation The Chinese are sending in 000’s of their own workers as the colonize much of Africa. I guess that is why they are known as the PLA.
commented 2015-05-22 12:14:14 -0400
Anyone who thinks boycotting trade with Saudi Arabia will have any effect except to create animosity is not thinking straight.

Pakistan will sell them nuclear and any other weapons they want at the drop of a hat.
commented 2015-05-22 12:12:20 -0400
Terry – A neighbour of mine was one of the monks that helped the Dalai Lama escape. He and his wife moved to Canada and worked tirelessly with the Chinese government to build schools in Tibet to educate a people that had previously been denied education.

They call the Dalai Lama “a terrorist” because his regime would extort money from poor and beat those who could not pay. Some of their students now attend universities in Canada and will become doctors and lawyers to serve Tibet when they return.

Many Tibetans consider China a liberator not an oppressor.
commented 2015-05-22 11:27:43 -0400
Ron, the distinction I was making was between the extension of spheres of influence through aid and trade on one hand, and military occupation or nineteenth century style colonialism on the other. To clarify your point, what sort of military intervention in Africa are you referring to? Joint exercises in Tanzania? Arms sales? Because it seems to me that actual Chinese intervention in Africa is considerably lower that than practiced by the United States, France and other countries.
commented 2015-05-22 10:21:27 -0400
Terry it looks to me you have a vendetta against Ezra. Instead of beating around the bush just say Ezra you are a jerk and a hypocrite.
Now since you have used this forum to state your opinion you need to be straightened out where you stray. China uses military force in Africa to influence governments. They have been doing this for decades. You should know this. Do I have to give you examples? The Chinese want the resources in Africa to send home. They want the land to feed their people. They work hand in hand with the capitalists. American imperialism is to have governments in place that accept their exceptionalism which usually creates dictatorships with human rights violations. Americans love to interfere, create instability and wars follow. The Chinese have an end game plan. They want the world’s resources. They start wars to get that end.
commented 2015-05-22 09:51:26 -0400
Ron: China’s expansionism is closer to America’s (in that it involves the extension of political and economic influence through aid, trade, and other forms of softer “support”) than it is to Russia’s, Nazi Germany’s, or the old-school European colonial powers that relied on military dominance. The exception in China’s case, of course, is Tibet.
My point in raising China, however, was to point out that the integrity of calls for boycotts or sanctions directed against countries on the ground of their human rights failing can be assessed on the basis of the editorialist’s willingness to boycott other countries with similar records. Ezra has two books in print about how wonderful OUR oil is and how nasty Saudi Oil is; draw your own conclusions.
commented 2015-05-22 07:13:58 -0400
Hi, Token. I stopped reading at " I guess I’ll try again to explain something to you that you just seem to not be able to get". Always interested in discussion, but not in drivel. Thanks.
commented 2015-05-22 01:40:24 -0400
China not expansionist? Just ask the people of Africa. They will tell you the exact opposite. While in Mocambique and Zimbabwe I saw that it was payback time for the sponsorship that China gave to FRELIMO and ZANLA during the terrorist liberation wars. The Chinese are just out and out pilfering the resources and using brought in workers to do the job. When they are finished there will be nothing left for the tribesmen. China at home persecutes Christians and other minorities. Yes there are minorities in China. Wake up people.
commented 2015-05-21 23:05:14 -0400
Many interesting points George. Some below have said we shouldn’t do business with China because of their human rights record. Where do you think they will get what they need if we don’t supply it? Also being in partnerships with China would suggest some sway, certainly more than if we were out of the picture. I would rather we in the west are the main suppliers of China’s needs, but its probably too late for that. We do however need to be in there in what ever capacity we can negotiate.
What George says about putting sanctions on oil imports from the Saudis sounds good in theory. We have already been infiltrated and our oil patch is effectively shut down. Also, don’t we need to not completely piss off the Saudis right now? The Americans still have air bases there, and it is to our advantage to keep the Saudis well equipped, as their take over could be not so good. That would be a lot of caliphate square footage we can’t afford for them to lose. We have to encourage them to do as much of the dirty work as possible at the moment. This is not the time, sad as it is to say, to cut any ties over human rights issues. Dirty war is going on.
commented 2015-05-21 22:51:41 -0400
Howdy Terry. I guess I’ll try again to explain something to you that you just seem to not be able to get, along with so many other basic concepts most of us understand here. China has a bad record with human rights, granted. China has a bad record with the environment, also granted. One thing that China doesn’t have a reputation for is expansionism, outside of they’re insane policies regarding Taiwan and Tibet. We in the west aren’t really scared of having to learn Chinese to please our masters, unlike the real fear that we will have to learn Arabic to satisfy our Iranian masters. The muslims are expansionist, to the core, in every example of everything that they do. It’s that reality that Marissa’s examining here, and she not only does a good job of it she comes up with a pretty good solution to the problem that unfortunately doesn’t jive with your left wing masters’ narrative. You see, that’s the difference between being Islamophobic and Xenophobic, we actually have a good reason to be scared of ISIS but at some point you have to admit that we could have some kind of problem with just about any other nation or culture if one looks close enough. Also, give Rebel a chance – it’s only been around a few months. Sun had a few articles about China, especially regarding it’s environmental record. When China becomes a topic of conversation regarding political situations I have no doubt that your bff Ezra will get around to talking about it.
commented 2015-05-21 21:41:02 -0400
Just Some Thoughts Inspired By Cathy Rochford:
With oil now around fifty-something dollars a barrel, the time might never be better than it is now to try this and maybe bring some order to the savages of the world and benefit us in the civilized world. Mr. Prime Minister, gather together a few friends, for example France, U.K., Germany, Australia, maybe even the U.S.A.and China and so on. Make a coalition with them and then announce to the Arab League that “we are fed up being your hired guns to continue cleaning up the mess being made by ISIS, ISIL, Boko Haram, Al Qaeda, etc. and the time has come for all of you to take responsibility (with our help) for cleaning up this mess and your own.

Now, we don’t want to hear any of that Muslims don’t kill Muslims crap, therefore, so long as the nasty fighting, squabbling, kidnappings, beheadings, forced conversions/marriages, regional takeovers etc. continue, we are instructing you, the countries of the Arab League, to begin behaving yourselves and then remove or take out, otherwise render ineffectual, the leaders of any and all belligerent parties such as Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, Bashar al-Assad, al-Shishkebab and so on. Until this is achieved, we announce to the world that
1) No country outside of the Arab League is to purchase oil from any country within the Arab League.
2) Any country outside of the Arab League that does not buy oil from an Arab League country will be our friend. We will smile on our friends.
3) Any country outside of the Arab League that does buy oil from an Arab League country will be our enemy. We will not smile on our enemies.

We understand that the leaders you remove will be replaced, nevertheless, so long as the belligerent activity continues, then the prohibition on purchasing your oil goes on and you are to continue removing those replacement leaders, and so on, until peace has been achieved.”

Arab League countries only have wealth to enjoy if they can sell the oil they have. Money talks. Aside from being a little bit of payback for trying to damage Alberta’s economy, and possibly help fix it, it might also be good for OPEC to be humbled a bit also. Carpe diem Mr. Prime Minister.
commented 2015-05-21 21:20:39 -0400
I’m sorry – but this has to be said, according to someone (who has passed) growing up in Algiers years ago, taught him something that he imparted to/with all of his family — and was repeated when he found it necessary " NEVER TRUST AN ARAB"

growing up in Algiers… in the 30’s — so ask yourself – - has anything changed ??
commented 2015-05-21 21:17:51 -0400
The Saudi contract items in question apparently are some modified LAV personnel carriers to be built in a number of variants suitable for the hot desert climate found there. The first consideration is that the London production facility is primarily involved in design and assembly of mostly outsourced components for the vehicle, many of them coming from elsewhere in Canada, the US and other NATO countries. So the product could just as easily be built in dozens of places worldwide.
Nobody in London is going to be forging cannon barrels 24/7 or messing with special trains full of ammunition constantly on the move. It’s a personnel carrier not a tank or rocket transporter.
All in all, if the usual suspects on the left want to pretend to get their knickers in a knot about it, who cares.
commented 2015-05-21 19:41:13 -0400
Boycott Saudi Arabia and their oil. Let’s use our own oil instead of continuing to support that stinking filthy rich war mongering country, the rotten bastards.
commented 2015-05-21 19:06:32 -0400
I agree Martin with what you have said. Also to take up Terry’s point I would have nothing to do with China either. Marissa was talking about Saudi Arabia and my prediction is that they will be overthrown down the road by the new kids on the block and yikes those weapons will be in their hands. My little knowledge of arms embargoes is that they don’t work. Even with UN sanctions, arms embargoes and no friends at all the Rhodesian’s during their war on terror managed to procure weapons from Portuguese arms merchants. If you need them and can pay someone will supply.