Friday, September 26, 2008

Sold my soul to politics

One of the key issues that concerns me regarding the upcoming Canadian elections, on October 14th, is what role the next government will play in bringing an end to the genocide in Darfur. The incumbent Conservatives have not done enough. Prime Minister Stephen Harper believed, by boycotting the Beijing Olympic Opening Ceremony, he was doing his "generous" bit to end the genocide.

I know, I cannot do much for Darfur, directly. But during the election season, when the politicians are trying to get elected, and when they actually care about our opinion; maybe we can do our bit by reminding them about the importance of global action against the Genocide. There is an urgent need to put an end to the inhumane atrocities the Sudanese government is committing there.

I wrote to the NDP or New Democrats, Canada's third largest party, regarding their position on Darfur Genocide. Following is the reply I received from them, in regards to their plan of action when it comes to putting an end to the Genocide. I agree, with their proposed solution of sending more Canadian troops to Sudan, collaborating with the United Nations and African Union forces.

"Thank you for contacting Canada's New Democrats about the ongoing tragedy in Darfur. We agree that the situation in Darfur is deeply troubling and that the suffering of innocent civilians is absolutely unacceptable.

Jack Layton and Canada's New Democrats are united in their support for all efforts to end the violence against civilians in the Darfur region. We continue to support the work of STAND and the Sudanese Diaspora to keep the Sudan crisis on the Canadian government's agenda. New Democrat MPs, including Alexa McDonough, Paul Dewar, Tony Martin and Bill Siksay, have consistently spoken out about the need for the Canadian government to do much more for the people of Darfur.

Paul Dewar (MP for Ottawa-Centre) is the NDP foreign affairs critic and has been our lead on Darfur. As you may know, he has been instrumental in moving the issue forward in the House of Commons by initiating a study at the Foreign Affairs committee. Paul is also vice-chair of the parliamentary group against genocide and has been active on Darfur in that capacity as well.

There is a growing concern among everyday Canadians that their public and private investments may be directly or indirectly contributing to the crisis in Darfur. NDP Foreign Affairs critic, Paul Dewar noted, "Knowing what we know about Darfur, business as usual is unconscionable." Despite opposition from Conservatives, the Foreign Affairs committee last year adopted an NDP motion to undertake a study of Canadian funds invested in Sudan and explore legislative initiatives to regulate such investments in light of the worsening crisis in the Darfur region of Sudan.

In May of this year, we have called on the Harper Conservative's take leadership. Jack stated that "this is exactly the kind of peacekeeping role that Canadians have always supported. Canadians would want us to be in Darfur. That sentiment is found right across the country."

Our Party wants Canada to take a lead role in any UN mission to stop the bloodshed in Sudan's Darfur province. Canada could and should commit immediately to the following measures:

-support the United Nations Mission to Sudan (UNMIS)

-offer Canadian troops to complement the advance party requested by the UN

-push for a stronger UN resolution on Sudan

-offer logistical support to the United Nations-African Union hybrid force

New Democrats will continue to speak out on both Canadian and international inaction on Darfur and will lend our support to all efforts to bring peace to this tragically, neglected region.

Again, thank you for taking the time to contact the New Democrats 2008 Campaign. We invite you to check our website at to learn the latest about our team of New Democrats and the campaign.


Jack Layton's New Democrats"

If you ask me who I want to win in this year's elections. The answer is, I definitely don't want Harper to get re-elected. Seriously, after approximately 4 years in the office, I don't know what his accomplishments are, and what his intentions are regarding our trembling economy, climate change, and Darfur. I would be glad to see the NDP and Liberals form a coalition.

The major opposition party, Liberals, are suffering from poor leadership, and, on the whole, their foreign policy is very shady, and does not really outline Canada's involvement in the global affairs. However, the Liberal MP from my riding, Etobicoke Centre, Boris Wrzesnewskyj has impressed me with the work he has done on the international platform. He has visited Darfur, represented Canada in the UN meetings, and has urged the Conservative government to send peacekeeping troops to Darfur and Chad. Compared to the Janjaweeds, the UN and African Union forces are not properly trained and they do not have enough resources. They have insufficient airplanes and helicopters, which would be ideal to provide immediate medical and food aid.

I will be voting for the Boris Wrzesnewskyj, not because he's a Liberal candidate, but because of the work he has done. For this reason, I am also canvassing for him, hoping he would get re-elected. To tell you the truth, I know most young Canadians don't care about the politics, and I know politics itself is very dubious. We have seen in the States, what poor leadership can do to a country, and to the world. Only a competent leader can help solve the issues we care about, both nationally and globally. I have been enjoying the canvassing experience, calling up people, and after Ramadan is done I will also be going door-to-door with Boris.

Who knows, maybe during my "door-to-door" house calls, I would stumble upon a young Muslim humanitarian guy ;-) - that would surely make my mom happy.

N.B. Seriously, how desperate is this guy, "teaching" Muslim-Canadians the importance of Laylat al-Qadr: Stephane Dion on Laylat al-Qadr.

I think unlike our neighbours to the South, Canadian politicians actually make a rather visible, albeit sad, and even rather desperate, but nonetheless commendable, attempt at including the minorities in their election campaign. I know this probably is just a sad ploy to get elected, but he does get an A for effort.

Boris Wrzesnewskyj on YouTube


Josh said...

Canadian political parties seems so much more clean cut than what we have to put up with here. I can't think of a single candidate I would canvas for, they are all too middle of the road and non-committal on a number of issues. It's quite frustrating.

Zany said...


Thanks for reading and commenting.

I agree with you, our politics is more clean-cut, but due to its drama-less nature it is labelled as boring. But I would take boring any day, over the charades the US politicians play.

Josh said...

I agree that US politics is too showy. We are stuck with a clueless bore who's constant shift in policies makes me feel like we are going around in circles but I'm still thankful we don't have bush...

Zany said...

Are you talking about Gordon Brown? He's supporting the $700 million bailout, right? Other than that I really don't know about the British politics.

Is Brown also very pro-Bush, like his predessor Tony Blair?

Bush should stick around for comic-relief. I don't think politics would ever be the same after him. I heard him speak about the economic crisis, and almost forgot that this guy went to Harvard for his MBA.

Josh said...

Yes, I'm talking about Gordon Brown, it took me ages to accept he's our PM, he just failed to make any sort of impact.

The labor party (who are supposed to be left of center) have aligned them selfs, almost wholly, with Bush's policies.

Bush for comic-relief.... now there's a campaign!

Zany said...

I know eh.

Elect Palin (pronounced Bush) if you are feeling awfully stupid, and need to be out-dumbed by someone who would only be a heartbeat away from the presidency.