The Hon. David KilgourThe Hon. David Kilgourhttp://themetropolitain.ca/articles/author/35fra"BREXIT" after the British electionhttp://themetropolitain.ca/articles/view/1664http://themetropolitain.ca/articles/view/1664Emmanuel Macron, president of France, is correct about Britain’s post-election Brexit realities. At a joint news conference with Prime MinisterTheresa May in Paris last week, he said the UK decision to leave the EU could be reversed: “As the negotiations go on, it will be more and more difficult to go backwards...”May knows she must respect the positions on Brexit of other parties, given her failure to secure a majority and the loss of 13 MPs. She is also under pressure from Brexiters on her own backbenches who could topple her as prime minister if she fails to deliver on their expectations.  The world, however, knows that she and David Cameron - with good reasons -supported "Remain" in last year’s national referendum.The Hon. David KilgourMon, 26 Jun 2017 19:54:00 -0400NATO and the Transatlantic Relationshiphttp://themetropolitain.ca/articles/view/1662http://themetropolitain.ca/articles/view/1662When 12 democratic governments seeking to check Soviet expansion formed NATO by treaty in 1949, it seems unlikely that any of their political leaders thought they would today number 28 and become the most successful defensive military alliance in history. Post-1952 American President Dwight D. Eisenhower noted at the time, “We are engaged in a war of great ideologies. This is not just a casual argument between slightly different philosophies. This is light against dark, freedom against slavery…”.The initiative represented a major turning point for the United States. Unprecedented in peacetime, Washington was entering a permanent alliance linking it to Western Europe in both a military and political sense.The Hon. David KilgourSun, 11 Jun 2017 23:40:00 -0400HUMAN DIGNITY, PUTIN AND THE TRUMP ADMINISTRATIONhttp://themetropolitain.ca/articles/view/1648http://themetropolitain.ca/articles/view/1648Ottawa - Across the world, in many nations with differing models of governance, it appears that human dignity is under siege.In Asia, for example, medical agents of the party-state in China are beyond any reasonable doubt removing for commercial purposes an average of 250 organs daily, mostly from non-consenting prisoners of conscience in the Falun Gong, Uyghur Muslim, Tibetan Buddhist and house Christian communities.Among the 54 nations of Africa, we find some of the world’s best-governed states, such as Botswana and Ghana, but also some, such as Zimbabwe and Angola, which are both mismanaged and corrupt and treat their citizens with thinly-veiled contempt.The Hon. David KilgourFri, 03 Mar 2017 23:19:00 -0500ISIS and the post-Brussels worldhttp://themetropolitain.ca/articles/view/1595http://themetropolitain.ca/articles/view/1595Since the suicide bomb tragedies in Brussels, the appeal of Senator Bernie Sanders as the next president of the United States to many across America and the world concerned about global security could diminish in favor of Secretary Hillary Clinton. Helping Clinton’s candidacy is her “smart power” approach to world issues. Where Sanders is more focused on domestic issues, she provided a detailed policy to win“more partners and fewer adversaries” in her 2014 book, Hard Choices. She believes probably more than Sanders that determined resolve now among the 60+ member nations of the International Coalition against ISIS must prevail over fear if ISIS and global terrorism are to be defeated to a point where they no longer offer false hope to disaffected people.The Hon. David KilgourMon, 04 Apr 2016 05:16:00 -0400The West and the Challenge of Democracy in Bangladeshhttp://themetropolitain.ca/articles/view/1362http://themetropolitain.ca/articles/view/1362Recently , I had an opportunity to read the report of two respected Canadian Members of Parliament, Russ Hiebert and Joe Daniels, following their pre-election visit to Bangladesh with Antonio Vieira da Cruz of SADF’s Ottawa office. They met with a broad cross-section of religious leaders, journalists, lawyers, academics, former government and military officials, and representatives of civil society organizations. They heard differing perspectives on the role of the Anti-Corruption Commission, the International War Crimes Tribunal, the Awami League (AL), Bangladesh National Party (BNP), Jamaat-e-Islami, and other political parties on Bangladeshi hopes generally for a stable political future. The Hon. David KilgourMon, 02 Dec 2013 10:55:00 -0500Beijing Commitment To :Reduce Dependency" On Organ Seizures Is Not Enoughhttp://themetropolitain.ca/articles/view/1325http://themetropolitain.ca/articles/view/1325Reuters news agency in Beijing reported on August 15 that the Chinese government has committed to “reduce dependency” on its longtime practice of seizing vital organs of prisoners for transplantation without setting a final deadline to end the commerce. China is the only country on earth that systematically uses organs from persons convicted of capital offences and prisoners of conscience—usually convicted of nothing-- in transplant operations, a trafficking in organs that has drawn almost universal international condemnation. The Hon. David KilgourFri, 23 Aug 2013 16:03:00 -0400The Problems with Nexenhttp://themetropolitain.ca/articles/view/1197http://themetropolitain.ca/articles/view/1197The proposed buy-out of Nexen Inc., Canada's sixth largest oil company, for $15.1 billion by the government-owned China National Offshore Oil Corp (CNOOC) obliges the Harper government to decide whether or not to approve the purchase under the undefined "net benefit" and "national security" tests in the Investment Canada Act. Here are some concerns.The Hon. David KilgourFri, 19 Oct 2012 19:30:00 -0400Expulsion of Iranian Diplomatshttp://themetropolitain.ca/articles/view/1195http://themetropolitain.ca/articles/view/1195 On September 7, Canadian Friends of a Democratic Iran welcomed Foreign  Minister Baird's announcement that his government is closing the  Iranian embassy in Ottawa after removing earlier our remaining diplomats and their families from Canada's embassy in Tehran. Canada is no longer willing to put up with the conduct of one of the  most inhuman regimes on earth, including the ongoing intimidation of  many Canadians of origin in Iran by its embassy. Canadians and the world's peoples have a responsibility to stand in solidarity with the  struggle for dignity in Iran. I stress here too my high regard for Iranians living within and outside Iran, who believe in peace, dignity, the rule of law, and freedom of speech and religion as much as Canadians do. The Hon. David KilgourSun, 23 Sep 2012 01:39:00 -0400Loving enemies: human dignity is ultimately indivisiblehttp://themetropolitain.ca/articles/view/1111http://themetropolitain.ca/articles/view/1111The words of Jesus, “Love one another as I have loved you”, link explicitly love of God and love of neighbour. The two great commandments, found in both the New Testament and the Torah, complement each other. Similar thoughts are found in the holy books of probably all other spiritual communities, certainly including Tibetan Buddhism.The Hon. David KilgourFri, 18 May 2012 20:30:00 -0400China and the West: An Uncomfortable Connectionhttp://themetropolitain.ca/articles/view/1119http://themetropolitain.ca/articles/view/1119I admire the people of China greatly, including their often heroic protests against acts of misfeasance by their government. To his credit, the outgoing premier, Wen Jiabao, has spoken often about the necessity for democratic reform. He recently had a major role in blocking the advance of Bo Xilai to the nine-member Standing Committee of the Communist Party. Bo and his mentor, former President Jiang Zemin, have been among the worst offenders in the ongoing persecution of the Falun Gong movement since July, 1999.  Bo has been removed from his  posts and his wife, Gu Kailai, is under investigation concerning the murder of a British citizen. The next to go will hopefully be Zhou Yongkang, the Party head of security, who worked closely with Zemin and Bo in the persecution of Falun Gong.The Hon. David KilgourFri, 18 May 2012 18:30:00 -0400Ahmadinejad and Human Dignityhttp://themetropolitain.ca/articles/view/1031http://themetropolitain.ca/articles/view/1031UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon’s report expressed “serious concern” about Tehran’s record: “...increased executions, amputations, arbitrary arrest and detention, unfair trials, and possible torture and ill-treatment of human rights activists, lawyers, journalists and opposition activists.” Ban deplored the persecution of Iranian minorities, including Arabs, Armenians, Azeris, Balochs, Christians, Jews, Kurds and Baha’is.The Hon. David KilgourWed, 26 Oct 2011 18:30:00 -0400Democracy in the Arab worldhttp://themetropolitain.ca/articles/view/944http://themetropolitain.ca/articles/view/944 As more and more Arab countries turn their backs on autocracy, Canada can be a key player in encouraging democratic governments to take hold.In the 22 member states of the Arab League, many people now appear to be turning their backs on autocracy, declaring to themselves and the world that governance of, by, and for the people is a universal value. The Hon. David KilgourWed, 16 Feb 2011 17:00:00 -0500More celebrations of Wednesday Nights: Something uniquehttp://themetropolitain.ca/articles/view/955http://themetropolitain.ca/articles/view/955Diana, David and friends have achieved something unique and important with their uninterrupted Wednesday salons over so many years. In our travels around the world, we have never heard a similar institution.The Hon. David KilgourWed, 16 Feb 2011 08:30:00 -0500Auschwitz- Birkenau and Confronting Contemporary Antisemitismhttp://themetropolitain.ca/articles/view/851http://themetropolitain.ca/articles/view/851 Recently, my wife Laura and I visited Auschwitz-Birkenau before attending a conference on democratic governance in nearby Krakow. The two large camps, about four kilometres apart and preserved by the Polish Parliament in 1947 as monuments to the Holocaust/Shoah, are undoubtedly the most inhuman scenes we visitors from around the world had ever seen.     Our guide told us many things, including the fact that last year alone the two sites received about 1.2 million visitors. If only many more people of all ages from everywhere, including Canada, would come, some of the world's Holocaust deniers might mute at least this feature of their antisemitism. The Hon. David KilgourThu, 22 Jul 2010 18:00:00 -0400Canada can help imprisoned Chinese hero Gao Zhishenghttp://themetropolitain.ca/articles/view/793http://themetropolitain.ca/articles/view/793Members of Gao Zhisheng's international legal team, on which I am privileged to work, have submitted a petition to the United Nations Working Group on Arbitrary Detention, urging the UN to declare that the Chinese government's detention of Gao violates international law. Our team hopes that the UN will decide accordingly, but also that the Harper government and opposition party leaders will speak out on behalf of this extraordinary human rights lawyer, who 'was disappeared' by the Chinese party-state over a year ago.The Hon. David KilgourThu, 25 Mar 2010 10:00:00 -0400Our agenda with Chinahttp://themetropolitain.ca/articles/view/732http://themetropolitain.ca/articles/view/732David Matas and I visited about a dozen countries to interview Falun Gong practitioners sent to China's forced labour camps since 1999, who managed later to leave the camps and the country itself. They told us of working in appalling conditions for up to sixteen hours daily with no pay, little food, being cramped together on the floor for sleeping, and being tortured. They made export products, ranging from garments to chopsticks to Christmas decorations at times as subcontractors to multinational companies. This, of course, constitutes gross corporate irresponsibility and violations of WTO rules and calls for an effective response by all governments who are trading partners of China...The Hon. David KilgourThu, 03 Dec 2009 19:00:00 -0500Zhao Ziyang -- major opportunity lost for Chinahttp://themetropolitain.ca/articles/view/694http://themetropolitain.ca/articles/view/694 The publication this year of Prisoner Of State-The Secret Journal of Chinese Premier Zhao Ziyang  contains important insights into modern China by a leader who for almost 15 years played a key role in the management of its economy. Tienanmen Square events in mid-1989 sidelined Zhao, but party-state governance has probably worsened since and his observations recorded before his death in 2005 are useful to any student of China...  The Hon. David KilgourThu, 01 Oct 2009 15:30:00 -0400Decade of terror against Falun Gonghttp://themetropolitain.ca/articles/view/654http://themetropolitain.ca/articles/view/654Almost exactly ten years ago, the party-state in Beijing launched its campaign against a government-estimated 70-100 million Falun Gong practitioners. The then determinedly-non-political Falun Gong, which is an exercise community with a spiritual component, soon became the latest in a long list of  'enemies of the party'. Atrocities against Falun Gong supporters continue today across China. The Hon. David KilgourThu, 06 Aug 2009 17:00:00 -0400Iran's revolt; Grassroots greenhttp://themetropolitain.ca/articles/view/634http://themetropolitain.ca/articles/view/634 Among many e-messages coming from Iran in recent days, I found one from a woman especially moving: "...this is the most authentic, grassroots and beautiful movement from the people, by the people and for the people." Iranians have spoken, with defiant demonstrations in the hundreds of thousands, and in rallies elsewhere, including one last weekend near Paris of 90,000, in protest against widespread election fraud and the fist of a regime unleashing terror.. The Hon. David KilgourThu, 02 Jul 2009 17:00:00 -0400Human dignity, religious rights, and Obamahttp://themetropolitain.ca/articles/view/636http://themetropolitain.ca/articles/view/636The Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) was adopted by the General Assembly of the United Nations in 1948 without dissent. It proclaimed: "All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights.....Everyone is entitled to all the rights and freedoms set forth in this Declaration, without distinction of any kind, such as race, colour, sex, language, religion, political or other opinion, national or social origin, property, birth or other status."..The Hon. David KilgourThu, 02 Jul 2009 15:00:00 -0400Kristallnacht: Seventy years later (DATE DE PARUTION 13 NOVEMBRE 2008)http://themetropolitain.ca/articles/view/616http://themetropolitain.ca/articles/view/616It is a challenge to address the stark issues posed by the 70th anniversary of Kristallnacht. One difficulty is that too many in my own spiritual community (Christian) stood by during the worst catastrophe in all of recorded history.There were exceptions-some famous, some virtually unknown—but most Christians in Europe and elsewhere, including Canada, did not do enough to love and care for our Jewish neighbours as ourselves. Another is drawing two effective lessons from the Holocaust of practical use today in Canada and elsewhere...The Hon. David KilgourThu, 18 Jun 2009 07:00:00 -0400Principles needed in Canada-China engagementhttp://themetropolitain.ca/articles/view/547http://themetropolitain.ca/articles/view/547While in Shanghai recently, Foreign Minister Lawrence Cannon correctly noted that Canada can keep its “principled position” on human dignity while pursuing trade with China. Principles and reality, however, should have kept him from saying that his hosts”had made progress” on human rights. He ought to know that basic rights for the most vulnerable among the Chinese people are worsening today...The Hon. David KilgourThu, 28 May 2009 14:00:00 -0400Iran: Responsible choiceshttp://themetropolitain.ca/articles/view/489http://themetropolitain.ca/articles/view/489Iran is  a country with immense human, cultural and hydrocarbon resources, but its people continue to be severely repressed by a government headed by a clerical Supreme Leader and president, who practise state terrorism, flaunt genocidal rhetoric, and are seeking to build nuclear weapons. Iran is pivotal to regional peace and world stability...The Hon. David KilgourThu, 19 Mar 2009 15:00:00 -0400Kristallnacht: Seventy years laterhttp://themetropolitain.ca/articles/view/137http://themetropolitain.ca/articles/view/137It is a challenge to address the stark issues posed by the 70th anniversary of Kristallnacht. One difficulty is that too many in my own spiritual community (Christian) stood by during the worst catastrophe in all of recorded history.There were exceptions-some famous, some virtually unknown—but most Christians in Europe and elsewhere, including Canada, did not do enough to love and care for our Jewish neighbours as ourselves. Another is drawing two effective lessons from the Holocaust of practical use today in Canada and elsewhere...The Hon. David KilgourThu, 13 Nov 2008 13:00:00 -0500Catastrophe looms for Ashraf refugeeshttp://themetropolitain.ca/articles/view/396http://themetropolitain.ca/articles/view/396The 3500 refugees in Camp Ashraf, located in Iraq about an hour's drive from both Baghdad and the Iranian border, are at serious risk. They are members and supporters of the main opposition in Iran, the People's Mojahedin Organization of Iran (PMOI), formed in the 1960s in opposition to the Shah's absolute monarchy...The Hon. David KilgourThu, 30 Oct 2008 20:00:00 -0400Iran: Time to support existing opposition to Mullah tyrannyhttp://themetropolitain.ca/articles/view/264http://themetropolitain.ca/articles/view/264The international community appears to be increasingly aware that Iran's theocracy constitutes one of the world's most oppressive governments. It continues to persecute minorities (Arabs, Azeri's, Kurds, Turks, Baha'is, Jews and Christians) and women in a species of gender apartheid (The life of a woman is worth half that of a man in Iran)..The Hon. David KilgourThu, 07 Aug 2008 13:00:00 -0400China indicted: Human dignity is indivisiblehttp://themetropolitain.ca/articles/view/297http://themetropolitain.ca/articles/view/297In recent weeks, the world has witnessed catastrophes of nature in China and Burma beyond the ability of mostof us to comprehend. For what happened in Sichuan province, the thoughts, sympathies and prayers of all of us go unreservedly to all families of the victims and survivors...The Hon. David KilgourThu, 26 Jun 2008 15:00:00 -0400International security, trade and governancehttp://themetropolitain.ca/articles/view/338http://themetropolitain.ca/articles/view/338According to a legend, in creating the world, God gave to Canada British Columbia, the Gulf Islands, the Rockies and many other natural wonders. Someone asked, "Why are so many good things going to Canadians?" God replied, "Wait till you see the neighbours I'm giving them." You'll recall the similar Mexican cri de coeur, "Oh Mexico! So far from God; so close to the United States!"..The Hon. David KilgourThu, 29 May 2008 16:00:00 -0400