- The Washington Times - Thursday, November 9, 2000

A decent interval having elapsed since the death Sept. 28 of Pierre Elliott Trudeau, Canada's late prime minister, I think we can now discuss (without violating the Latin injunction, de mortuis nil nisi bonum) the true record of this flamboyantly flawed Canadian statesman.

Marshall McLuhan was once asked how the leftist Trudeau managed to stay in power 15 years for as long as he did. His questioner was Tom Wolfe who in his latest book, "Hooking Up," reports McLuhan's response:

"Trudeau has a French name, he thinks like an Englishman, and he looks like an Indian. We all feel very guilty about the Indians here in Canada."

A witty non-answer to a significant question, but one which ignores Trudeau's leftist record as Canada's longtime prime minister. For despite all the glowing eulogies about him at the funeral and in the media, Trudeau had two tragic attributes: he was bitterly anti-American despite the fact that the United States is a democracy, and, second, there wasn't a communist dictatorship he didn't admire. There is a third attribute, what Toronto's National Post called "his longtime sympathy for Marxism-Leninism." It is a tribute to four U.S. presidents Richard Nixon, Gerald Ford, Jimmy Carter and Ronald Reagan whose terms overlapped Trudeau's, that they ignored his deep-rooted leftism.

No sooner had he become Canada's prime minister in 1968 than he began to question the need for Canada's membership in NATO, the defense treaty which was intended to deter and it did any Soviet invasion of Western Europe. Trudeau cut in half Canada's NATO troops in Europe. He described the communist revolution in China as "one of the most significant revolutions in the history of the world and the extension of basic human amenities to hundreds of millions of persons," ignoring the mega-million deaths deliberately engineered by Mao Tse-tung.

In 1973, Trudeau traveled to Cuba where he raised his glass to Fidel Castro, shouting "Viva Castro, Viva El Commandante." No wonder this brutal dictator flew to Montreal to attend Trudeau's state funeral.

In 1976 Cuban transport planes en route to Angola via the Soviet Union were allowed to refuel in Newfoundland. Mr. Castro was sending Cuban troops to help establish a communist dictatorship in that African land and Trudeau was cooperating in this bloody Soviet venture.

One of the most revealing episodes about Trudeau's anti-anti-communism was that after a visit to Moscow he stated that Canada ought to learn from Russia's "development" of Siberia. Siberia home of Stalin's slave labor extermination camps. And when the people of Tanzania were dying of hunger, thanks to the sovietization of that pitiable East African country's agriculture, Trudeau bailed out its Marxist-Leninist dictator, Julius Nyerere, and his good friend with tons of free food. Trudeau must have been sorely disappointed when in later years Mr. Nyerere declined to support his candidacy for United Nations secretary-general.

And for a supposed believer in democracy, Trudeau did not back up his beliefs in World War II. He opposed conscription of Canadian soldiers in WWII in a war against fascism and didn't fight. Trudeau's anti-Americanism reached its heights during the Reagan years. Said a National Post editorial: "Mr. Reagan's assertion that the Soviet Union was 'an evil empire' alarmed Mr. Trudeau; he was later horrified by Mr. Reagan's decision to make an issue of a Soviet attack on a Korean airliner in which 269 innocent people lost their lives. The truth is that Mr. Trudeau was generally on the wrong side of the most important ideological battle of our time."

You won't find any details of Trudeau's dismal political record in major publications either in Canada or the United States. The real story about Trudeau, despite several already published biographies, is yet to be written. If it ever is, its thematic title will be: "Pierre Trudeau, the Soviet Union's Agent of Influence, 1968-1983."

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