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The Department of Global Affairs released information about PM Trudeau’s 1st foreign policy when the conservatives got hold of it through a request of Access to Information. The information revealed that Defense Minister Harjit Sajjan and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau had been lying about the details of Canada’s combat mission with Iraq against ISIS.
According to the information, the Iraq allies were displeased with Canada for pulling six CF-18 fighter jets off the mission. However, Trudeau’s government claimed that the action had pleased their allies and they were happy that Canada was advising and training ground troops.
At that time, Iraq’s defence minister had pleaded with Sajjan to rethink on the matter but the jets had been pulled back nonetheless. In December2015, Sajjan was touring in Iraq and met with Canada’s Kurdish and Iraqi allies to discuss about ISIS. When the media asked Sajjan how the plan had gone, he replied, “The irony is, I haven’t had one discussion about the CF-18s”. James Bezan, who is a conservative defence critic, said that this was a blatant lie, which was then defended by Sajjan’s spokesperson who said this conversation, had taken place with Kurdish leaders.
Whatever the case, the bottom line is that Trudeau’s government lied to Canadians about the jet fighters. When PM Trudeau was asked about the motive behind Harper’s ISIS bombing, he said, “I wanted to whip out our CF-18s to show them how big they are”.
His juvenile quip about an international crisis did not go unnoticed and showed how he was probably going to fail the foreign policy test. Trudeau failed to hold true to his promise of withdrawing jets from Syria and Iraq when he became the Prime Minister. Canadian Hornets were still dropping bombing on ISIS for months.
Party members from different side had different opinions at the time. Stephane Dion, Trudeau’s Global Affairs Minister said that the jets would be back by December 2015, whereas Sajjan said they hadn’t yet decided on the matter. The bombing eventually ended at the start of 2016 and PM Trudeau was busy adhering to partisan politics.