Gallons of maple syrup won’t sweeten India-Canada relations
SummaryTry we must, nonetheless. Although it’s inexplicable why Canada’s PM chose to embitter ties with India by linking the Indian government to a hit job, we both need to get out of this spot
There has long existed a liberal elite across the world for whom Canada could do no wrong, especially under Prime Minister Justin Trudeau. It was partly on account of his leadership, for example, that Americans put off by Donald Trump began talking about what Indians had been doing for decades: moving to Canada. Ottawa’s welcome mat for immigrants and effort to diversify the country in various ways, including what can legally be inhaled, gave it a heroic profile well beyond its borders. What these admirers may have taken too long to notice, however, is the Canadian administration’s record on dealing with the real world, the one in which relations with foreign countries cannot be subject to cavalier shake-ups, let alone the sort of rupture we have just seen with India. By openly talking about “credible allegations" of the Indian government’s involvement in the killing of a Canadian citizen there, dismissed as “absurd" by New Delhi, Trudeau has set off a chain reaction that threatens the interests of both countries by trapping us in mutual hostility. That we are now caught in an avoidable confrontation, with tit-for-tat diplomat expulsions, is a let-down whose costs could pile up unless quick amends are made.