Canada Can't Have It Both Ways
Dewar says stop the arms sales to Russia
The NDP says Prime Minister Stephen Harper should order Canadian industry to stop selling military weapons and equipment to Russia, as long as the Russians continue to occupy Ukrainian territory.
Most Canadians are not aware that while Harper and his MPs were denouncing Russia for invading Crimea and imposing political and diplomatic sanctions against it, Canadian companies kept right on doing business with Russia as if nothing had happened.
NDP Foreign Relations critic Paul Dewar said this week that it makes no sense to impose political sanctions at the same time we continue to sell weapons and military equipment to Russia.
Canada sells military electronics, aircraft parts and spare parts for communications equipment to the Russians.
Dewar says suspension of trade in military equipment with Russia should remain in force until there is a diplomatic solution to the crisis.
This week, Germany led the way and announced that it was suspending military trade with Russia. Germany is the leading supplier of weapons to Russia.
Combined with the recent travel bans against senior Russian officers and politicians has sent a very clear message to Russian President Vladimir Putin that Canada 's solidarity with the Ukrainian people is important.
Harper’s problem is that a large number of Canadian firms have invested heavily in mining operations in Russia and are not about to give in on that score.
It remains to be seen what Harper does next.