Canada’s Top Defense Official: “A Threat to Israel is a Threat to Canada”
Documents uncovered by Queens University in Canada have revealed private assurances given by the government of Canada to Israel in 2011, on matters related to security.
“A threat to Israel is a threat to Canada,” Peter MacKay, Canada’s Defense Minister, told a top Israeli military commander during a visit to the Jewish state in 2011.
Relations between Canada and Israel have been strong under the leadership of Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper, including increased military cooperation and a meeting in March of 2012 in which Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said he “appreciated” Harper’s commitment to preventing Iran from developing a nuclear weapon.
“I appreciated the fact he made clear that when it comes to a nuclear-armed Iran, containment is simply not an option, and equally in my judgment, and perhaps most important of all, I appreciated the fact that he said Israel must be able to defend itself, by itself against any threat,” the Israeli prime minister said.
While speaking with Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak in February of 2011, MacKay said Canada was a solid partner and that “both countries were looking through the same filter” in the Middle East, according to the recently uncovered documents found by researchers at Queens University.
A spokesman for MacKay, reached by the National Post in Canada, stated the defense minister “was making a statement of political solidarity with the Israelis and reminding our friends there that they are not facing global security threats alone.”