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Bill Kelly: Getting tough with China may have to wait

Picture of Canadian and Chinese flags taken prior to the meeting with Canada's Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and China's President Xi Jinping at the Diaoyutai State Guesthouse on December 5, 2017, in Beijing.
Picture of Canadian and Chinese flags taken prior to the meeting with Canada's Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and China's President Xi Jinping at the Diaoyutai State Guesthouse on December 5, 2017, in Beijing. Fred Dufour/Pool via REUTERS/File Photo

A Conservative motion calling for action against Huawei and the sanctioning of Chinese aggression passed in the House Commons on Wednesday as all of the Opposition parties supported the non-binding motion.

Good for all of you! How blissful it must feel to vote for a motion, knowing that it has no real consequence.

READ MORE: Tory motion calling for action on Huawei, plan to combat Chinese aggression passes

But the burden of governing, which by the way, none of the Opposition leaders have ever experienced, at least as government leaders, puts a much different perspective on the issue.

Simply put, this may not be the right time to poke the bear.

Excluding Huawei from Canada’s 5G network may well be the right thing to do, and I suspect it’s exactly what the government will do eventually, but not yet.

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Click to play video 'Erin O’Toole says ‘no greater threat’ to Canada’s interests than China' Erin O’Toole says ‘no greater threat’ to Canada’s interests than China
Erin O’Toole says ‘no greater threat’ to Canada’s interests than China – Nov 17, 2020

Opposition leader Erin O’Toole’s assertion that Huawei was guilty of corporate espionage against former tech giant Nortel is a long-standing rumour, but there is no evidence to back it up.

That’s not to say we should naively trust Huawei or the Chinese government, but we need to consider the consequences.

First and foremost are the two Michaels, Kovrig and Spavor, who have been incarcerated for over 700 days by the Chinese government.

After a conversation between the prime minister and President-elect Joe Biden, there seems to be renewed hope that the release of the two Michaels may be closer than ever before.

We can only hope that’s the reality.

But at this point, we’ll need diplomacy, not chest-thumping, to make that happen.

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Bill Kelly is the host of the Bill Kelly Show on Global News Radio 900 CHML.

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