Toronto, Ontario. Canada is presently facing a grave crisis. The nature of this crisis is not fully understood by many people, not for lack of political acumen, but simply because the situation is one to which the liberal-left Canadian establishment prefers to turn a blind eye. Consequently, the "crisis" to which I refer has been given little, if any, exposure in the media.
Early this year elections for provincial government were held in the province of Quebec. It must be noted that the incumbent Liberal Party was rife with corruption, mismanagement and other common ailments of governments. Campaigning on the issue of clean government, the Parti Quebecois, led by Rene Levesque, was elected to office with a parliamentary majority.
The Parti Quebecois (PQ) is known primarily as the party whose main aim is to separate Quebec from Canada and create an independent state. It is this aspect of the PQ victory which has dominated media coverage of the PQ and its activities. The dissolution of Canadian confederation would indeed have some serious political ramifications, but not in the sense that has been played up in the media. Appeals to national unity, language rights, economic ties and so on have been the catch-phrases in the Quebec problem. My contention is that there is something more fundamental, more worthy of being called a crisis, something in which all of the catch-phrases are nothing more than means to an end.
What is of crucial importance, and what most people have failed to—or don't wish to—grasp is the political nature of the Parti Quebecois. Only when the aims and goals of the PQ have been understood can their intention to separate be termed a "crisis."
Aside from its separatist aspirations, the Parti Quebecois has what amounts to a Marxist constitution: its goals and aims are directed at total nationalization of Quebec with the ultimate goal being a totalitarian one-party state. Rene Levesque, Premier of Quebec, has long been associated with the Communist Party apparatus in Quebec. (It is a well known fact that the main Communist Party in Canada is strictly run by Moscow through the KGB). Rene Levesque is a close friend of Fidel Castro and interestingly enough, a training school for guerrillas destined to fight in Africa was recently unearthed in the Cuban consulate in Montreal (the spies were deported, not charged). Other individuals with questionable backgrounds include: Guy Caron, a long-time member of the Communist Party and now a member of parliament representing the Quebec riding of Westmount for the Parti Quebecois; Claude Morin, also a long-time communist and now a cabinet minister in the PQ government. This is an indication of the kind of men who have control of the government in Quebec. It is becoming more and more apparent that "separatism" per se is not the ultimate end of the Parti Quebecois. There is more to the story.
One of the first measures that the PQ took was the introduction of language legislation which would make French the only official language in Quebec—English would be banned from use in business, law, school, government. The legislation is having the effect of driving out English speaking Quebecers who do not wish to learn French.
It must be noted here that the PQ intends to hold a referendum in the very near future to decide whether Quebec should separate from Canada. It is essential for the PQ to hold the referendum soon, before the excitement of a new "honest" government wears off. To achieve this result, it is necessary to reduce opposition as much as possible, as quickly as possible—thus the language bill discriminating against English-speakers.
Should the PQ win the separation referendum, no time will be lost in creating a new state. The inhabitants of Quebec, however, may well be in for a rude shock. The PQ is likely to declare a totalitarian regime immediately and quickly put to rest any dissent (Canada's top army regiments are French-Canadian and based in Quebec). It is also very likely that the PQ would form immediate ties with Cuba and thus with the Soviet Union. The Soviet aim of undermining collective western security will then have been achieved.
What about the Canadian federal government? It is doing very little to contain the potentially explosive Quebec situation. But this is not surprising, considering that Pierre Eliott Trudeau is Prime Minister of Canada.
The federal government is preparing to fight an election this year. I have no doubt that Pierre Trudeau will suddenly play up the Quebec problem and cast himself in the role of saviour of Canadian confederation. It is very likely that he may win that election because effective opposition to Trudeau and the Liberal Party has all but disappeared.
But is Trudeau, in fact, interested in confederation at all? It is apparent from his writings and his actions that he is an avid socialist; he is a keen admirer of Mao Tse-Tung; he visited Cuba and shouted "Viva Fidel" before a huge rally; he has done nothing about the intense proliferation of Cuban spy activity in Montreal and Toronto (the Cuban consulate in Toronto is reputed to be the coordinating headquarters of KGB activity in North America). The list of the Trudeau contradictions is endless. In fact, Trudeau shares more similar views with Rene Levesque and the PQ than opposing ones.
Trudeau has written many times that he advocates socialism, not through violent overthrow, but through insidious infiltration. It is, therefore, entirely within the realm of possibility that some sort of "unholy alliance"is being planned for Canada; an alliance with Trudeau and Levesque as the chief commissars.
The scenario is both ludicrous and frightening—ludicrous because of the prevalent, comfortable, "it-can't-happen-here" attitude of the Western democracies; frightening because, for those who can see, it is already happening.
Meanwhile, English-speaking Quebecers flow out of Quebec in a steady stream, the first refugees in what may become a war to determine the fate of the free world. And that is the crisis that faces Canada.
This article originally appeared in print under the headline "Foreign Correspondent: The Quebec Crisis".