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  • No products in the cart. Podcast: China and Iran, Canada’s foreign policy frustrations Podcast: China and Iran, Canada’s foreign policy frustrations


Eddie Goldenberg, who was the chief of staff to ex-Prime Minister Jean Chretien, is the latest Liberal voice to suggest Canada release Huawei chief financial officer Meng Wanzhou rather than let the rule of law prevail.

Meng’s extradition hearing begins this week in British Columbia Supreme Court. She is wanted in the U.S. on fraud charges for allegedly misleading banks about Huawei’s business in Iran. Unless her legal team succeeds in convincing a judge to release her on a technicality, the case could drag on for years.

Terry Glavin (Twitter)

Terry Glavin, a columnist in the National Post and Maclean’s, tells Podcast host Bob Mackin that there is a simple solution that does not involve Canada kowtowing to China.

“There is an easy way to resolve it,” Glavin said. “That is, if Meng Wanzhou tells her handlers to fire up the limousine and take her to the Peace Arch border crossing so that she can turn her in to American authorities, where she will get the fair trial that her father says he has confidence she will get in the States.”

On this edition, Glavin talks about China and Canada’s other big foreign policy challenge of early 2020: Iran.

Canada was the ultimate destination for most of the 176 innocents killed on a Ukrainian 737 jet by Iranian missiles over Tehran. Iran was forced to admit it shot down the jet, after initially lying, removing evidence from the debris field and preventing foreign investigators immediate access to the country.

Iranian human rights activists have risked their safety and marched against the hardline Islamic regime, angry that their government lied to them. Yet some Canadians, such as Maple Leaf Foods CEO Michael McCain, have directed their anger solely at U.S. president Donald Trump.

McCain’s company is building a meatless foods plant with government subsidies in Indiana, vice-president Mike Pence’s home state. Meanwhile, McCain has lobbied against sanctioning Chinese officials complicit in human rights abuse. Maple Leaf has big ambitions for the Chinese market, where protein is in high demand.

“For this guy to suddenly become a folk hero, he’s this kind of a greasy corporate executive from a family with Liberal credentials,” Glavin said.

“The position he articulated was objectively indistinguishable from what the Iranian foreign ministry is saying, what the office of the supreme leader is saying.”

Anastaia Lin (

Also on this edition, Mackin interviews Anastasia Lin, the Chinese-born, Canadian-raised beauty queen who became a human rights activist.

Lin is appearing at the Global Democracies in Retreat conference in Vancouver, to talk about why China poses the greatest threat to free speech around the world.

In her interview, she said she is encouraged by Hong Kong’s pro-democracy movement and the re-election of Taiwan’s independence-minded president. But the Canadian government’s apathy troubles Lin. February’s two-year countdown to the Beijing 2022 Winter Olympics could provide another opportunity.

“It would be quite wonderful to boycott, wouldn’t it?” Lin told Mackin.

Listen to Glavin and Lin on this week’s edition of Podcast.

Plus, commentaries and headlines from the Pacific Rim and Pacific Northwest.

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