Wednesday, October 20, 2010

The Harper diplomacy chronicles

That special brand of Harper diplomacy is on full display with the UAE situation:
The Prime Minister held a private chat with a senior UAE minister recently, but Stephen Harper’s staff refuse to even confirm the meeting took place. It apparently lasted about five tense, unproductive minutes.
A reliable source says the UAE ambassador in Ottawa is not having his calls returned or requests for meetings granted.
What might the chess master be trying to teach us with such moves? That it's the quality of the discussion, not the quantity? Canada is back, it just doesn't call back?

There is disagreement with the Prime Ministerial tactics, on all sides, even his own:
MPs of all parties have lined up behind the sister Emirates airlines, going so far as to write testimonials in an airline pamphlet. Even cabinet ministers confide to me they think more direct flights from Toronto, Calgary and Vancouver to the economic heart of the Middle East would deliver obvious convenience and spin-off benefits.
Caught in the middle, the military, hustling now to move that crucial military base from the UAE to one of the stans. Huh, that seems like an easy move:

What else do we have here in the fallout...a rumoured "furious" Peter MacKay. The Canadian taxpayer, facing "tens of millions" in unnecessary costs associated with the move. Throw in the prospects of a brewing trade war just as economic indicators again are turning for the worse.

Fresh off that UN Security Council loss with historical ignominy beckoning, lesser mortals would be chastened. Not our Prime Minister. Seems he has learned...well, not much. Maybe he's taking his favourite minister's adulation much too literally.

Amateur hour rolls on. And on. And on....