Strange: France is able to investigate foreign interference, but not Canada…

Weird: France is able to investigate foreign interference ;res, but not Canada...


The Johnston Reporton Foreign Interference in Canada does not recommend a public inquiry into the matter. However, France has been holding a parliamentary inquiry into foreign interference for months.  

Curiously, in France, the pretext of the secrecy which must surround the activities of the intelligence services was not used to stop this investigation. 

On the contrary, the French parliamentary committee on foreign interference heard diplomats, experts, elected officials and even intelligence people. The latest personality to be heard by the committee is Marine Le Pen who, because of her dubious statements on Russia as well as Russian financial aid to her party, has attracted strong suspicions of Russian influence.  

The French commission is due to submit its report in a few weeks. If France can hold such a commission of inquiry, why can't Canada? 

1 Why did Johnston wrong in his decision?

It is difficult to understand how a man as informed as David Johnston could conclude that a public commission was not required. Johnston has taken refuge behind the pretense of intelligence secrecy. But a commission of inquiry is not obliged to rely exclusively on sources that come from the intelligence services. As in France, it can also summon a multitude of people who can testify in public. Given the suspected extent of foreign interference in Canada, finding witnesses without jeopardizing Canadian intelligence should be easy.

2 Does the French commission of inquiry only seek to understand foreign interference?

The French commission on foreign interference was requested by Marine Le Pen. Emmanuel Macron decided to respond favorably to this request last September. Ms. Le Pen has called for an investigation to clear her party of suspicions of Russian influence. Nevertheless, the suspicions of Russian influence hanging over her and her party really arise, since Mrs Le Pen defended the attachment of Crimea to Russia (even if there are arguments in favor of this position), and above all, because in 2014, his party received a loan of 9.4 million euros (C$13.73 million) from a Czech-Russian bank to finance his election campaign. 

3 Were Justin Trudeau and the PLC influenced by foreign powers?

All political parties in Ottawa may have been influenced by foreign powers. Sometimes in a naive way, without too many consequences, with, for example, all-expenses trips paid for by foreign powers. Sometimes also with the weaving of interested friendships or the facilitation of access to markets for companies close to party leaders. 

4 Qui n' has no interest in a commission being held?

Many people have an interest in not over-publicizing their foreign ties. Their simple nomenclature could reveal the potentially disastrous extent of foreign lobbies in Canada and thereby reduce their influence. 

5 Why would a commission be good for Canada?

A commission of inquiry into foreign interference would be excellent for democracy. If she deemed foreign influence to be minimal, she would enhance the reputation of elected officials. Conversely, if it concludes that there is a strong foreign influence, it could also benefit the entire political class, insofar as it shows a real desire to counter this influence. For the moment, the PLC and the NDP give the impression of protecting foreign interests.

Weird: France is able to investigate foreign interference, but not Canada...