Between friends: Folks, black U.S. presidential storms have arrived in Canada.

Opinion

This article contains content that was originally published in the October 16, 2016 edition of jewishinfoNews.

“A president who politically acts like a leader of a tin-pot country.”

by Alan Simons

Was it not Euripides who said “Friends show their love in times of trouble, not in happiness?” Unfortunately, today nothing is more certain than an acute awareness in Canada of a profusion of black storm clouds from the U.S. looming over us. In times of storms one normally takes shelter with family and friends alike. We are one, so to speak. This time it is different.

Canadians in general have an admiration towards our friends living to the south of us. After all, many Canadians have close family ties in the U.S. going back generations. 

Yet, with President Trump’s recent statements condemning various trade agreements with Canada, we are seeing a shift away from admiration to a “weltschmerz” – a mood of sentimental sadness towards a president who politically acts like a leader of a tin-pot country, rather than a statesman of a country that deserves better.

Trumptwit, as he is now referred to in some quarters, is riding high on top of a vicious heap of dirty rags that unfortunately puts America and its people to shame. Trumptwit the American, has lit the destructive match of revulsion unseen in modern day U.S. history. He falsifies credible and substantiated information with such downright bullheadedness and utter ignorance. Simply put, he makes President Warren Harding look like a genius!

Napoleon Bonaparte said: “In politics stupidity is not a handicap.” Welcome to these United States of America.

strangeloveIn fact, as we have regularly seen during the past months, anyone who Trumptwit believes doesn’t agree to follow his train of thought had better watch out. The similarity to Dr Strangelove is unnerving. Trumptwit. He embellishes all that is distasteful in an individual. He is the archetype of a destructive lost soul whose aim in life is to put a culture of fear into people and nations. If it wasn’t all so pathetically sad his character could be taken right out of a Thomas Pynchon novel!

The bottom line is this: We are watching a president whose political thirst for power is so repulsive by many in nature, it goes far beyond the pale. And, as it’s been said: “His actions are outside the bounds of morality, good behaviour or judgment.”

What is so painful from a Canadian perspective, is to observe a president being so violently negative towards Canada. Trumptwit continues to regard the U.S. as a barren doom and gloom economic wasteland, taken right out of Steinbeck’s The Grapes of Wrath and in his mind much of this is seemingly due to Canada.

To quote Trumptwit: “I will build a great wall – and nobody builds walls better than me, believe me …” He’s right on this one. No other modern day president has done more to build a wall around himself that has fractured American society than Trumptwit.

In Canada, America’s largest trading partner, there are now serious concerns of what lie ahead for the country. As reported last year in the Toronto Sun, “Canada’s economy would take a direct hit if Donald Trump follows through on his anti-trade rants, trade experts say.

“If he actually does what he says he’s going to do I think there would be a very significant impact on Canada,” University of Ottawa Law Professor Debra Steger said. Today’s suggestion is he would end significant agreements including the Canada-U.S.-Mexico North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) which took effect in 1994. “NAFTA was the worst trade deal in history,” Trumptwit proudly states. Poo on Trump!

The Government of Canada has for some time correctly seen the need to respond to Trumptwit’s shenanigans by saying:  

Nearly nine million U.S. jobs depend on trade and investment with Canada

  • History has shown that trade is the best way to create jobs, growth and long-term prosperity.
  • Since the Canada-U.S. Free Trade Agreement came into force in 1989, Canada’s two-way trade in goods and services with the United States has more than tripled. Thanks to this agreement and the North American Free Trade Agreement, the trading relationship between our two countries is so strong that we exchanged approximately $2.4 billion in goods and services every day in 2015.

America’s largest customer

  • Canada is the U.S.’s largest customer, purchasing US$338 billion in goods and services in 2015.
  • Canada buys more from the United States than does any other nation – including all 28 countries of the European Union.
  • Canada and the United States are the world’s largest trading partners: more than US$670 billion in goods and services were traded in 2015.
  • The United States is the most important destination for Canadian direct investment abroad, which totaled $448 billion (stock) in the U.S. in 2015.

This week a former U.S. ambassador to Canada came out with a harsh anti-Trumptwit statement with regard to the President’s ridiculous tirade against Canada. 

”It’s goofy stuff, unbecoming of our relationship and frankly unbecoming of the leader of our country,” remarked James Blanchard.

Currently, no one has openly compared Trumptwit with some of the worst Roman Emperors. But I venture to say it might not be too long before somebody freely offers Trumptwit the title, “Aut Caesar aut nihil.” 

 Alan Simons is the publisher and owner of jewishinfoNews

(Featured image credit: lightstalking; Strangelove, sillyfunda) 

 

Rwanda: 7 April 2017. Never Again!

Four words:

Duhore Tuzilikana Kirazira Kwibagirwa!

We Must Never Forget!

Today, 7 April 2017 is the 23rd Commemoration of the Genocide Against the Tutsi. 

by Alan Simons

In a few weeks time, on 23 April at sundown, Jews throughout the world observe Yom HaShoah, Holocaust Memorial Day. It is the day where we pay tribute to all the victims of the Holocaust and ghetto uprisings. Inaugurated 64 years ago we like you, have no intention of forgetting our loved ones. Therefore, as a Jew, my message to you is not from a stranger, but from a brother and partner. For in commemorating the 23rd anniversary of the 1994 genocide against Tutsi, your loss, is also my loss.

However, I ask myself what right do I have to speak of such experiences of genocide?

Who am I to speak of such unthinkable acts of violence and cruelty, unequaled in modern history?

I never witnessed killings, or had my life threatened. I never lost immediate family members, nor witnessed rape or sexual mutilation, or had to hide under corpses.

Rwanda April 7 2017 bSo, what authority gives me the right to speak about Rwanda’s genocide, to talk about your families and friends who perhaps survived these 23 years, and hopefully, I repeat hopefully, have been able to overcome their traumatic experiences and find optimism in the future, as well as speak of those who were murdered?

Well, a few years ago President Kagame of Rwanda, photographed above, said: “The world chose to watch as one million were being slaughtered. Victims were turned into perpetrators and justice was turned into a political tool. The world has shown us that we cannot afford not to fight. Do not be afraid to stand up for truth, justice and for who we are. The only way to live in this world is to stand up for ourselves, stay true to who we are and define our own destiny.”

Perhaps, more than anything, it is in these words that binds Jews and Rwandans together in a mutual understanding of what intolerance and hate is all about in our society today. And, we have only to look at the past few weeks of what happened in London, a few hours ago in Stockholm, as well as the gassing earlier this week of children and adults in Syria, to appreciate the scope and threat of the world we continue to live in.

Hate is hate, irrespective of one’s religion, colour or nationality.

Even now in Canada there are deniers of both the Rwandan genocide and the Holocaust who continue to thrust their sick fermented ideas into the international arena. As Hitler remains centre stage to many antisemites, it was only a couple of months ago that Rwanda’s deniers actually competed to question who was to blame for the 1994 killings. 

It’s been said that sadness is but a wall between two gardens. May all of those who perished in the genocide be remembered for their beauty and fragrance that grace our gardens.

My dear Rwandan brothers and sisters, finding an appropriate way of honouring and remembering the dead is one of the goals of the mourning process. For, as Elie Wiesel the Nobel Laureate and Holocaust survivor said, “To forget the dead would be akin to killing them a second time.”

(Photo credits: From Paul Kagame’s Post, in Timeline Photos)

 

Opinion: The world of the trumptwit

red-tieThere are many trumptwits in this world. Some belong to the world of politics. Some to the corporate sector, and some spend their lives trolling on social networking services and online social media. But, the bottom line is this:  All trumptwits must have a supreme leader. And now, after many years as an apprentice, they have one in the canicula figure of King Trumptwit the First.

King Trumptwit, in his 17 minute coronation speech yesterday, the shortest inaugural speech in 30 years, gave much pleasure to all the infatuated little trumptwits in his audience. Well, there they were, all jumping up and down in their red baseball hats, hugging each other- as long as the trumptwit was of the same color, while others, commonly referred to as members of the Street Trumptwits Society (STS), were gleefully gallivanting through the Capitals’ downtown streets looking for anti-trumptwits.  

Now, to be fair it was also the anarchists and like-minded folk, AKA “an organized group,” who seized upon, what later the King would declare to his minions. Namely, to give Washington back to the people. And they must have read his mind. They did what any sensible rioter would do.  “More specifically, the group damaged vehicles, destroyed the property of multiple businesses, and ignited smaller isolated fires while armed with crowbars, hammers, and asps.” In the foray an official media videographer (as opposed to the fake kind), was thrown to the ground by one the cities’ finest men in blue, who obviously in the confusion couldn’t distinguish between authentic and fake.

To quote.

The Metropolitan Police Department released the following statement following the vandalism:

“At approximately 10:30 a.m., an organized group was observed marching south in Northwest Washington. On their way, members of the group acting in a concerted effort engaged in acts of vandalism and several instances of destruction of property. More specifically, the group damaged vehicles, destroyed the property of multiple businesses, and ignited smaller isolated fires while armed with crowbars, hammers, and asps. Preliminary information indicates the group collectively engaged in these criminal acts. MPD members were alerted to the criminal activity, and responded swiftly to contain and detain the involved individuals in the area of 12th and L Streets, NW. At this time, numerous arrests have been made and those individuals have been charged with rioting. Investigation into the incident remains ongoing. Pepper spray and other control devices were used to control the criminal actors and protect persons and property. During the incident, police vehicles were damaged and two uniformed officers sustained minor injuries from coordinated attacks by members of the group that were attempting to avoid arrest.”

Then we learnt that a BBC reporter, desperately seeking out “an expert in US politics” – there were only a few thousand in the crowd to choose from, claimed King Trumptwit the First’s “inauguration speech was the angriest he had ever heard.” Oh?

It was Napoleon Bonaparte who was overheard to say that in politics, stupidity is not a handicap, a statement that little trumptwits in their eagerness to please their leader are making every effort to subscribe to. What this all boils down to is they have now become unable to differentiate between ignorance and conscientious stupidity and the ability to make intelligent decisions.

Encouraged by their King, we are experiencing a frightening political infectious disease that contains no international borders. Trumptwit is a language common to many people, irrespective to what country one lives in.

It’s been said that little trumptwits are analogous to the zebra mussel, “a species originally native to the lakes of [Putin’s] southern Russia and accidentally introduced to numerous other areas. It has become an invasive species in many different countries worldwide, including the USA.”

Ordinary, decent Americans are fearful of the political consequences now taking place in the USA, a trait not particularly recognized before in their country. But they sure understand it now. And so should you, whatever country you live in.

(This Opinion piece has been updated from an earlier version)

 

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SEVENTY YEARS LATER -

OVER SEVENTY YEARS LATER – “Plus ça change, plus c’est la même chose” | “The more things change, the more they stay the same”