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Conservative incompetence endangers Canadians lives in Gaza

What a boneheaded lack of communication and display of incompetence by our Canadian government with regards to getting its citizens out of Gaza and out of the fighting zone. Every other embassy and government with citizens there were on the ball in organizing the departure of those who wanted to flee, but as detailed in the Star, our government was not:

Thirty-nine Canadians, still stranded in war-wracked Gaza yesterday, could have safely departed the territory last Friday – if only Canadian diplomats had known it. Early last Friday, more than 30 hours before the launch of a deadly Israeli ground offensive, more than 200 foreign nationals fled Gaza via the Erez border crossing, which had been opened by Israeli authorities for just that day and for just that purpose….But it was only on Friday that Canadian diplomats first provided the Israelis with a list of names of Canadians who wanted to leave the territory, and no attempt was made to contact them that day, to tell them to get to the border right away, because it was open. Meanwhile, beginning early Friday, 226 citizens of six other countries – Kazakhstan, Moldova, Russia, Turkey, Ukraine, and the United States – began crossing into Israel, where they were put onto buses and driven to neighbouring Jordan. The embassies in Israel of each of these countries had all contacted Israeli authorities days beforehand in order to arrange the departures, submitting lists of the names of their nationals wanting to leave.

Meanwhile, Peter Kent, the minister of state for foreign affairs, couldn’t even tell reporters whether the list of Canadians submitted was before the border crossing was open or after, nor could he state why Canadian diplomats made no effort to contact those Canadians to tell them they had an opportunity to leave.

Incompetence might be the best of the reasons for this oversight. One might get the impression it was indifference or even a deliberate oversight, with some of the stuff I’ve read coming out of Peter Kent’s mouth.

UPDATE @ 2:06 pmChris points out that this isn’t the first time that this government has dropped the ball when it came to evacuating Canadians out of a war zone. One would think they would have learnt their lesson from the first go-around.


3 comments to Conservative incompetence endangers Canadians lives in Gaza

  • rolltide

    I have been to the West Bank as well as the Gaza (1982-83) I was warned about going in to Gaza, and did so at my own risk, and that was when it was “safer”.

    This critisism is just a partisan rant.

    • You need to read better, Roll-tide, and/or stop being so obtuse. The criticism was the Canadian government and its diplomats dropped the ball on informing Canadians that they could have left, and the criticism was they failed even to bother to arrange this, even as other countries were snart enough to figure out to talk with Israeli authorities.

      They’ve finally done something today, to their credit.. but they should have acted a lot sooner to get our citizens out.

  • Oh, c’mon, Scott! They shouldn’t be treated like, you know, REAL Canadians…

    (That’s sarcasm, for the rest of you who don’t know me better…)

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