GUNTER: Trudeau continues to embarrass Canada on work stage

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Seriously, when are we Canadians going to stop letting our buffoon of a prime minister represent us on the international stage?

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A man who is, at best, an intellectual lightweight on home soil, Justin Trudeau becomes a clown when he goes abroad.

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Just look at his “manner legs” photo while shaking hands on Friday with Kim Jin-pyo, speaker of the Korean National Assembly.

During the standard photo op with Kim, Trudeau bizarrely spread his legs a metre or more apart.

He looks like a gymnast who badly missed his dismount.

His pose can only be described as embarrassing. Not as embarrassing as his family’s dress-up tour of India in 2018, but only because the Korea gaffe was short-lived. The Trudeau family costume party on the Ganges went on for days.

The prime minister’s office’s explanation of its boss’ behaviour only makes the incident more embarrassing.

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According to PMO staffers, Trudeau adopted the splayed-legs position to lower himself (height-wise). Trudeau is 20 cm taller and didn’t want the gap to appear so obvious in photos.

Since when has that ever been a consideration?

It’s patronizing and insulting, like getting down on your knees to talk with a little person.

If the use of dark-coloured makeup by Caucasians is called blackface, what is Trudeau’s move called? “Asian legs?”

But let’s say for a moment that Trudeau was well-intentioned. Korean media seemed to give the PM some credit for trying not to humiliate Kim by towering over him. Can’t we at least accuse Trudeau of cluelessness for thinking his gesture wouldn’t appear in photos? That he could pull off the height-equalizing stunt and it wouldn’t show up in news reports? That there are never any full-height photos of world leaders, just waist-up ones?

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In the end, even if all Trudeau was doing was trying to spare Kim some awkwardness, he only ended up underlining the pair’s height differential. Rather than making the disparity go away, Trudeau made it “the” story.

Most people might not have noticed a gladhand between a Canadian politician and the speaker of another nation’s parliament. Trudeau’s action has made sure everyone noticed. And not in a complimentary way.

I guess, at least we can be grateful Trudeau didn’t seek out a piano in the lobby of his Seoul hotel and start singing pop tunes, the way he drew unwanted attention to himself at his ultra-expensive London hotel the weekend before Queen Elizabeth’s funeral.

But Trudeau’s foreign policy failures go way beyond his propensity to shame our country while in foreign capitals. Trudeau, too, has all but destroyed what influence we had in foreign affairs with his weak, aimless positions, his preaching to other countries, his servile attitude towards Beijing and his apathy for our military, even peacekeeping.

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If you think his economic policies are bad, just look at the way he’s dismissed internationally.

Remember the way Chinese President Xi Jinping threatened and scolded our prime minister for the world to see at last fall’s G20 conference in Bali? You don’t treat someone you respect or consider competent as though he was a bumbling schoolboy.

Indeed, it is Trudeau’s obsequiousness towards Beijing that is at the root of much of the decline in Canada’s foreign influence since 2015.

He let the Chinese Communists embarrass him during free trade talks. Even talking free trade with China, put the Americans (who are our largest customers) on guard about relations with us.

Trudeau’s coziness with China has caused our allies to stop sharing defence and intelligence with us.

And his unwillingness to send Canadians on UN peacekeeping missions cost our country a place on the UN Security Council.

While Trudeau boasted on the night he was elected eight years ago that “Canada is back” in international affairs, under him we have become more marginalized than ever.


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