As the tail end of summer gives way to a fall election campaign, Canadians must appreciate how well off we are relative to most of the world. We need only look to two recent developments in Europe to understand that.
On May 5, Albertans will head to the polls almost a year ahead of schedule, and if the PC party wins it will extend its hold as the longest uninterrupted governing party in Canadian history.
China may never need to arrest the Occupy Central protestors. Their international support is vastly diminished, and the majority in Hong Kong now wants the occupation to end. Beijing is not likely to agree to any compromise with the weakened protest. Beijing’s focus is clearly on continuing to strengthen China’s economic clout in the rest of the world. Occupy Central protestors may have little choice but to fold up their umbrellas and go home.
As the long days of summer give way to autumn’s disappearing sun, and as frost greets each morning, Canadians retreat to the warmth of our homes and the sense of protection they provide. We shared many a summer night with family and friends, often shielding our too-short vacations from the anxieties induced by global current events. Yet the world’s war-torn strife remains.
For nearly a month, from the middle of June to mid-July, most of the world took time off from life’s usual challenges and enjoyed the best of the “beautiful game” as the World Cup unfolded in Brazil.
Events commemorating the 70th anniversary of D-Day in Ouistreham, France in early June had one unwelcome guest: distrust.
Clearly, the West has underestimated Putin’s resolve not to let the Ukraine buffer be brought unchallenged into the western sphere of influence. An absolutely bottom-line, non-negotiable issue is Russia’s access to its Black Sea port, which also has access to the Mediterranean. And that access happens to be in none other than the Crimea, at the port of Sevastopol.