Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Divide And Be Conquered

The Liberal Party owed much of its electoral success to the fact that it had decided, through immigration reform and multiculturalism, to dissolve the old Canadian people and elect another, who could be managed as discrete ethnic blocs, to be conciliated or played off each other as needed.

Unfortunately for a brokerage party, some parties would rather break the party than be brokered.

And that's what happening to the Liberals right now, as they discover that they can't resolve their own Middle East crisis:

Key figures in the Liberal Party warned yesterday that discipline within its caucus of MPs is unravelling over the issue of the Middle East conflict, in a party stretched over a long leadership race.

Some candidates for the leadership called for MP Borys Wrzesnewskyj to be removed from his post as deputy foreign affairs critic over his reported assertion that Hezbollah should be involved in Mideast negotiations and removed from Canada's list of banned terror groups.

That dispute is only the latest that has seen MPs and senators criticize their party's Mideast position, as well as the decision of Mississauga Liberal MP Wajid Khan to accept a post as Conservative Prime Minister Stephen Harper's adviser on the Middle East.

Leadership candidate Bob Rae said he has concerns about MPs "freelancing" their views in public comments that will undermine confidence in the Liberal position.

"It's a free world, but I think there has to be some discipline in recognizing the need to try to come to a common approach and a common point of view. I think that's what people look for in a political party. That's why we're all supposed to be working together."

MP Irwin Cotler, who has pushed fellow members to come to a stronger defence of Israel in the crisis, said Liberals agree on the basic principles, but the party's message is inconsistent because it is in the midst of a long leadership race.

The Liberals agree on only one basic principle: power at all costs.

But its Islamic and Jewish blocs hold to even higher principles than putting the Liberals in power.

The two sides cannot, and will not, be reconciled indefinitely within the party.

Knowing the Liberals, we know which side they'll take. They can read census figures and birthrate projections, after all.

Source: Globe and Mail

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