Zahar: What issue should John Baird prioritize?
Our utmost priority should be to develop effective ways of accompanying the current transformations in the Arab world. Working through the IMF and the World Bank will not do. Canada is militarily involved in Libya; it is concerned about terrorism and extremism and it seeks a solution to the Arab-Israeli conflict that addresses the security concerns of the State of Israel. In the medium to long term, only genuine democracy in the Arab world will allow us to consolidate gains on all these fronts. Our NATO partners, chief among them the United States, have taken proactive steps of their own to support change in that part of the world. Burden sharing in NATO should not be limited to the cost of military endeavours. It should also extend to other engagements intended to make ours a safer and more secure world.