Everyone else has posted this excruciating video of Canadian Premier Stephen Harper serenading Benjamin and Sara Netanyahu in Jerusalem the other night, so we have to get it up too. Unbelievable.
Harper went over with more than 200 guests, paid for by the government. I couldn’t believe a NPR show was making fun of Stephen Harper’s craven visit last night; then I heard the accents and understood it was this Canadian CBC show, Q, on late last night. The Canadian media commentators problematized the fact that the taxpayers paid for the 200 guests, including right wing Zionists, and that he was so over the top with a foreign leader on foreign soil to advance political goals back home. Confusing, huh?
But even worse was this moment at the Western Wall, in occupied East Jerusalem:
[Conservative Canadian MP Mark] Adler was caught on microphone asking Jeremy Hunt, one of Harper’s staffers, whether he could get a photo with Harper in front of the wall, a holy site for Jewish prayer.
“Jeremy, Jeremy,” Adler said. “Can we get in?
“No,” Hunt replied.
Adler was undeterred.
“This, it’s the re-election. This is the million-dollar shot,” Adler said.
Hunt, who is referred to as Harper’s “director of stakeholders’ relations and outreach” on the Israel delegation list, but has been Harper’s executive assistant in the past, is likely used to saying no on behalf of his boss.
“I’m sorry, listen, you and 300 other people,” Hunt said to Adler.
“If there’s one person, you know … if I could have done this it would have been done already.”
Adler then asked whether Hunt could get Harper over to shake his hand once he was done at the wall, but Hunt’s response isn’t captured on tape.
Mark Adler now says this:
Mark Adler, the Conservative MP who cited “re-election” when he pleaded for a photo with Prime Minister Stephen Harper in front of Israel’s Western Wall, says he was being tongue-in-cheek.
Speaking to reporters Wednesday, one day after he was captured on tape urging Harper’s staff to get him in front of the wall with the prime minister for a photo, Adler said he was joking.
Was he joking? Listen to the video above, it seems pretty earnest to me. How important are such moments to political ambition in America? I saw Mitt Romney there, with Dan Senor. Guess it didn’t help him.