Conservative Party leader Andrew Scheer is standing firm against China.
With the Pacific power spreading its sphere of influence, Scheer wants to ensure Canada is able to stand up against the growing international threat China poses.
As Oriana Skylar Mastro writes in Foreign Affairs, China’s ambitions don’t rest in dislodging the United States from its position of global hegemony.
This fundamentally contrasts the common conception that Xi Jinping is vested in deteriorating America from the helm of international dominance. Rather, the Chinese government wants ultimate control over the Indo-Pacific region.
Speculation aside, China poses serious threats to the Western-led international order. David Lague’s article in a Reuters investigation piece writes “In just over two decades, China has built a force of conventional missiles that rival or outperform those in the U.S. armory”. The country also boasts the world’s largest naval force and, under the leadership of Xi Jinping, increased its second strike capability.
It is no secret that Justin Trudeau and Minister of Foreign Affairs, Chrystia Freeland are not good at facing the challenges posed by international relations.
The most preposterous instance of our government’s failure to strengthen Canada’s alliances was Freeland’s devastating speech after winning Foreign Policy’s Diplomat of the Year Award.
The speech purposefully, and explicitly, demonized the White House administration. Political ideologies aside, Freeland should have never lambasted President Trump in Washington DC. Not only did it infuriate the President, but it also jeopardized Canada’s position at trade negotiations. Trump went insofar as claiming “We’re very unhappy with the negotiations and the negotiating style of Canada – we don’t like their representative very much”.
Freeland’s speech was a shambolic attempt at portraying the Liberal government as being “holier-than-thou”. This is a difficult position to hold when our Prime Minister has neglected veterans, coddled extremism, and continuously humiliates the office he serves with scandals and crony capitalism.
On the Chinese front, the Canadian government continuously falls short at delivering.
Take the case of Michael Kovrig and Michael Spavor, both Canadian citizens who were taken hostage by the Chinese government. It was a retaliatory act against the arrest of Huawei CFO Meng Wanzhou “for extradition at the the request of the United States”, according to the Calgary Herald. A treaty signed between the two countries means they both must honour extradition requests.
In 2019 alone, two Canadians have been handed the death penalty in China; Fan Wei and Robert Lloyd Schellenberg.
Most recently, China has completely stopped Canadian canola seed imports. The Chinese government said the measures were taken due to hazardous organisms, yet International Trade Minister Jim Carr said there is no evidence to back that claim. According to Global News, experts are citing the heightened tensions with the Asian power as the root cause for the cessation of canola imports.
As election season approaches, CPC leader Andrew Scheer is rolling out his vision for Canada in a series of speeches.
With the Conservatives leading in the polls, Scheer needs to manipulate his advantageous position to increase the gap between the Liberals and attract non-partisan centrist voters.
Regarding the Liberal government’s deteriorating relationship with the Chinese, Scheer made it clear that Canada will not allow Huawei to participate in Canada’s 5G wireless network.
He is following in the lead of the United States and Australia, two major allies.
Scheer understands that with a budget that likely won’t be balanced until 2040, and a deteriorated presence on the international stage, openly defying our allies is not the proper course of action.