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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Prime Minister Stephen Harper says he has no plans to visit Cuba.

Speaking to reporters in Barbados, Harper said Canadian governments have often expressed concerns about certain aspects of governance and human rights in the Communist state.
http://www.cfra.com/headlines/index.asp?cat=2&nid=50903


Fair enough Mr. Harper but why did you have no qualms about visiting Columbia (right wing death squads are acceptable I guess).
 

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"Fair enough Mr. Harper but why did you have not qualms about visiting Columbia (right wing death squads are acceptable I guess)." AS, I agree with you on this point. Harper could have made a bold gesture by coming out for human and political rights in both countries.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
because washington didn't tell him not to visit columbia
Given that Canada and Cuba has had a important Economic relationship for over 30 years, this snub does seem out of SINC with previous administrations...

We don't have a trade embargo with them and it does seem odd that Harper would single out Cuba.
"The values that we are promoting through the region - values of open and free societies, democratic societies,values of modern prosperity and open markets and of course common security challenges - we're going to promote these values similarly everywhere in the region."
http://www.canada.com/topics/news/story.html?id=6c55bc6c-0125-4b9e-870a-a4c1e1afe59c&k=56595&p=2
While that could sound like Bush, it was Harper but one would think that he would be listening to some committees...

'Exporting democracy' found to be tricky business
At the moment, the world is learning the hard way that exporting democracy is a devastatingly difficult undertaking.

here's also a danger, warns the report, of pushback against democracy assistance providers, which can be linked to charges of "neo-colonialism in the application of western models of democracy." Which is why it's important that any push for democracy be viewed as a multinational undertaking.
http://www.canada.com/vancouversun/columnists/story.html?id=ef004f3e-21b4-43ae-aefd-73033a9b544a
 

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Canada's government talking about Cuba that way is not new. I think they even sponsored some UN resolutions on the topic Harper is talking about.

PMs also visit all sorts of mean places, like China.

This bit, I actually liked:
CTV.ca | PM touts Canada as model for Latin America
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Prime Minister Stephen Harper is promoting Canada as a compassionate alternative to the far-left ideology of Venezuela and the hard capitalism of the United States, as he continues his tour of Latin America.

In a major foreign policy address in Santiago, Chile, Harper said Latin America is sometimes painted as being at a crossroads between the two extremes.

"This is, of course, utter nonsense," he told a business audience of about 500. "Canada's very existence demonstrates that the choice is a false one. Canada's political structures differ substantially from those in the United States.
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I think even Canadians forget this sometimes.
 

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These comments by Harper caught my eye as well. While I won't take much encouragement overall, one speech being insufficient data to draw any conclusions from, it does mark the first foreign policy statements I've noted, in which Harper explicitly steps out from under the U.S. shadow.

Keep it up!
 
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