NDP House leader questions Israel's right to exist
Regardless of however the Liberal Party and NDP want to play it, talk of a Liberal/NDP coalition is very much alive in Canada again.
If the Liberals were ever seriously considering such an option, a serious bump has just appeared in the road to such a coalition: notably, NDP House Leader Libby Davies and her stance on Israel.
Davies was asked whether she believed that Israel's "occupation" of Palestine began in 1948 or 1967.
"I'm not going to argue numbers, it's too long," Davies replied. "This is the longest occupation in the world. People are suffering."
Which would be a surprise to, say, the Kurds. In the 16th century, Kurdistan was divided between the Safavid and Ottoman Empires. Today, historical Kurdistan is split up amongst Iraq, Iran, Turkey, and Syria.
NDP Leader Jack Layton and Deputy Leader Thomas Mulcair have both attempted to distance themselves from Davies' remarks. But their potential coalition partners -- the Liberal Party -- are having none of it.
Liberal Foreign Affairs Critic Bob Rae has called for Davies' resignation as Deputy Leader of the NDP.
"These are not the off-the-cuff ramblings of any ill-informed or biased person," Rae fumed. "Ms Davies is the deputy leader of a political party that aspires to reflect and represent the views of Canada on the international stage. In this role, fully cognizant of her responsibilities, she stated that Israel has been occupying territories since 1948, the year of its independence. The logical implication of these comments is that Israel has no right to exist."
"This is a position that is more than just 'unacceptable,'" Rae continued. "This rhetoric is responsible for more than 'confusion,' and an 'inadvertent error,' as Ms Davies now suggests. The appropriate decision, given her stature and responsibilities with the NDP, is for Mr Layton to ask for her resignation as deputy leader and for Ms Davies to issue an apology to all Canadians. Nothing short of that will do."
Her stance on Israel isn't the only position of Davies that is unacceptable. Her stance on human trafficking is also an atrocity, and a humiliation of her party and constituents.
It's unlikely that coalition or merget talks between the Liberals and NDP will progress very far with the Deputy Leader of the Liberal Party calling for the resignation of a deputy leader of the NDP.
Particularly when the best that Bob Rae could offer such a coalition is a tie with the Conservative Party.
Then again, considering that this coalition would need to mortgage the Canadian government to separatists, Canadians should be rather thankful for that.
Other bloggers writing about this topic:
"Gay and Right - Stephen Harper on Libby Davies"
Marginalized Action Dinosaur - "Someone Send Libby Davies a History Book! The Longest Occupation Ever?"