Selling Weapons To Saudi Arabia Betrays Canada’s Commitment To Freedom And Human Rights

Is this what we want our weapons used for?

The United States – the worlds top arms dealer – has issued new restrictions on selling weapons to Saudi Arabia.

The restrictions stem from the Saudi government’s killing of civilians in Yemen.

America doesn’t want their weapons used for that purpose, so they are restricting sales.

Makes sense.

What about Canada? Is our illustrious government restricting sales to Saudi Arabia?

Nope. Here’s the government position as reported in the Globe & Mail:

Foreign Affairs Minister Stéphane Dion said Canada has asked the Saudis to be careful how they use some of their more controversial weapons in Yemen, where Saudi Arabia is leading a coalition of Arab states trying to beat back Houthi rebels backed by Iran. He did not elaborate on these conversations.

That’s pathetic. We’re “asking” the ruthless and oppressive Saudi Regime not to use them for bad purposes?

It’s embarrassing. There’s no way the government can talk about human rights and freedom if they sell weapons to a brutal regime.

How can our Prime Minister call himself a feminist while selling weapons to one of – if not the most – anti-women regime on the entire planet?

Saudi Arabia brutally oppresses women, executes LGBT people, kills Christians and other religious minorities, suppresses all free speech, and are also holding a Canadian citizen in a Saudi jail for internet comments.

And we’re selling weapons to them? The cowardice of our leaders is sickening.

People expect hypocrisy in politicians, but this takes it to an extreme.

After selling weapons to Saudi Arabia, the government can’t talk about justice or human rights with any credibility.

At the same time our own military is horribly underfunded, we’re funding a country that should be our enemy while leaving our own country vulnerable.

That seems almost treasonous.

And in fairness – the previous  government – who talked a big game about protecting freedom and standing up for Canadian values – initiated the deal in the first place.

More than one political party fucked up on this one.

It’s not even an issue of being practical: Saudi Arabia has nothing we need. If anything, they are a competitor in the oil market. 

Instead of helping them, we should be seeking to gain an advantage over Saudi Arabia and cut their market share so we benefit and make more money.

Instead, our leaders sell them weapons to strengthen their regime and fight their enemies.

Stupid is too kind a word for that.

Canada is a nation that – when we’re at our best – stands up for individual freedom and human rights.

Selling weapons to Saudi Arabia is a betrayal of the Canadian people, and a betrayal of what Canada represents.
It must stop. And it must never happen again.

Spencer Fernando