The CEO of a Canadian food company turned to Twitter Sunday night to vent about deaths suffered in the Ukrainian jet crash in Iran. Sounding like the Democrats in Washington, D.C., Michael McCain, CEO of Maple Leaf Foods, blames President Trump.
Last week a drone strike took out Iran’s top terrorist, Gen. Qassem Soleimani. The same night as the Iranians launched retaliatory missile strikes [see update], a Ukrainian jet was shot down and crashed in Iran. The Pentagon blamed the Iranians. The Iranian government originally denied it and refused to accept blame. Then the Iranians said it was their fault but it was an unintentional act. But, the shooting down of the Ukrainian passenger jet wasn’t unintentional at all. All throughout the news cycles, reporters were complicit in assigning blame to President Trump and the decision to take out Soleimani when the opportunity presented itself. Democrat lawmakers and presidential candidates eagerly blamed Trump. One Democrat even called the deaths “Trump’s collateral damage“. Trump Derangement Syndrome is stronger than the ability of some to acknowledge that Trump took a chance and it paid off.
Total deaths in the crash were 176 people, including 57 Canadians. Most of the flight’s passengers were heading to Toronto. Among the dead were the wife and child of an employee of Maple Leaf Foods. The CEO of Maple Leaf Foods, Michael McCain, still reeling with grief for his employee’s personal loss, posted a series of tweets Sunday which held Trump responsible for the act of shooting down that Ukrainian jet. He began by explaining that the tweets were his personal thoughts and voiced his grief.
…U.S. government leaders unconstrained by checks/balances, concocted an ill-conceived plan to divert focus from political woes. The world knows Iran is a dangerous state, but the world found a path to contain it; not perfect but by most accounts it was the right direction…
— Maple Leaf Foods (@MapleLeafFoods) January 13, 2020
Sounds like he’s a fan of the Obama/Kerry Iran nuclear deal, right? Iran was “contained”, he tweeted. This flies in the face of recent events. The most recent actions from Iran against America included the attack on the U.S. embassy in Iraq by Iranian-backed militiamen and an American contractor were killed. Maybe McCain isn’t so concerned as long as Canadians are not in harm’s way.
McCain labels Trump as a narcissist – an easy, cheap shot frequently used against Trump – and then goes on to use the words “collateral damage”, just as Rep. Speier did.
…The collateral damage of this irresponsible, dangerous, ill-conceived behavior? 63 Canadians needlessly lost their lives in the crossfire, including the family of one of my MLF colleagues (his wife + 11 year old son)! We are mourning and I am livid. Michael McCain.
— Maple Leaf Foods (@MapleLeafFoods) January 13, 2020
Keep in mind that though McCain is saying that these are his own “reflections”, the Twitter account he uses is in the company’s name. Obviously he knew that would garner more attention but I question the judgment being shown by a CEO. Will the employees of the company now suffer from backlash? The most recent number of employees I could find was from 2008 when the company employed 24,000 people, founded in 1927 in Toronto. This isn’t a small mom and pop operation in Canada.
No one doubts the man’s angst and grief over an employee’s loss of family. However, to blame President Trump in such a public forum is not the way to go, if you ask me. As a businessman, it seems foolhardy. Perhaps the man is politically at odds with the Trump administration’s policies and actions. No one cares about that – until he weighs in with such strong accusations. The whole “collateral damage” phrasing is beyond the pale.
Perhaps Mr. McCain should look a bit more closely at what is happening in Iran right now. Protests have broken out against the country’s leaders, demanding a change toward freedom. The protesters are risking their lives, literally, to demand freedom. President Trump didn’t act hastily or irrationally as his critics claim. How many times have we heard Trump say that if an American is killed in a nefarious act overseas, he will respond? Taking out terrorists is high on Trump’s list of things to do.
A young Iranian olympian has defected – the day after the acknowledgment came from the Iranian government that it was their action that brought down the Ukrainian jet. Iranian students are protesting for freedom and they certainly are not blaming America for the decision to take out Soleimani. The Iranian protesters are seizing this moment in history.
Students in Tehran University take pains to avoid walking on the flags of U.S. & Israel—as the regime forces people to do—and when two Basiji regime agents then make a point of trampling the flags, the crowds shout "Besharaf!" #بیشرف — the regime is shameless, dishonorable. pic.twitter.com/BLr5QKztr8
— UN Watch (@UNWatch) January 12, 2020
The loss of 176 innocent souls is tragic, especially for those left behind. The loss of Soleimani is not tragic. To conflate one action with the other is wrong. Mr. McCain’s Twitter rant against President Trump delivers comfort to the bad guys.
Update/correction: I incorrectly stated that the Ukrainian passenger jet crashed on the same day as Gen. Soleimani was killed in a drone attack. The drone attack was on Jan. 2, while the jet crashed on Jan. 8, the same night as the retaliatory missile strikes.
My apologies for the error. The post has been corrected above.