The government has recently announced its decision about ballistic-missile defence. The decision will be popular in the party. But we need clarity in our national defence policy. We need to balance a principled opposition to the future weaponization of space with an equally principled commitment to participate in North American defence right now. We don't want our decisions to fracture the command system of North American defence, and we don't want a principled decision to result in us having less control over our national sovereignty. We must be there, at the table, defending what only we can defend.Now, nobody in the Liberal leadership was talking about withdrawing from NORAD. Nobody in the Liberal party was talking about dividing NORAD's command structure. Nobody in the Liberal leadership was talking about "leaving the table". Rather, these were all Republican government talking points.
Most importantly, the idea that NORAD would be splintered, or that Canada would lose a voice in it's own air defense, weren't Canadian positions - they were American threats. Ignatieff heard petulant American threats, and decided that the government of Canada should surrender.
Does Ignatieff come out and say "I support missile defense"? No, because the man is incapable or unwilling to make any statement that can be construed as a rational thought. The day Ignatieff makes an unequivocal statement that he doesn't contradict 48 hours later will be the day hell freezes over. But his remarks were clearly interpreted at the time as support for missile defense, and he never - until now - contradicted those interpretations.
Ignatieff, with his remarks on Qana and his statements about missile defense, is clearly pandering for, well, my vote and the vote of other centre-left Canadians. Except that he has a record, and my memory is still intact. He isn't appealing - he's insulting.