Sun News Network hasn't earned the nickname Fox News North by being friendly to Liberals and New Democrats, but two of the station's most prominent hosts took a break from bashing progressives Wednesday to aim their rhetorical cannons at an unfamiliar target — the Conservative Party of Canada.

Ezra Levant and Brian Lilley both devoted segments to bashing the Tories and Tony Clement for funding a centre devoted to communist hero, and Canadian-born doctor, Norman Bethune.

The treasury board president spent part of Wednesday at a ceremony opening the new visitors’ centre at Bethune Memorial House in Gravenhurst, Ont. Price tag? $2.5 million.

The Tories have been paying increased attention to Bethune's legacy largely because he is a national hero in China, where the Conservatives have been seeking to expand trade relations. The doctor died in 1939 while tending to future Chinese ruler Mao Zedong's troops.

If there's one thing Sun News hates more than Liberals, it's communists, so it's not surprising Levant and Lilley are taking the Tories to task.

Levant focused on the government failing to provide funding for a monument to the victims of totalitarian communism, while lavishing cash on a tribute to a red hero.


The China angle was the the thrust of Lilley's interview segment with former Liberal strategist Ray Heard. The title of the piece? RED ALERT - CHINA IN CHARGE. Snappy.

Lilley and Heard also took the time to criticize Clement for arriving at the ceremony in an "NDP-orange rickshaw." Heard pointed out that the minister should be more careful to avoid such obvious symbols of neo-colonialism. We're not sure about the intellectual optics, but we're pretty sure Clement couldn't have looked more silly (see footage in the video below).


The barrage of criticism from Sun News may be coming in part as response to a Twitter spat on Wednesday between former Globe editor Stephen Wicary and Clement.

Wicary, who was Levant's target last week for moving to Cuba — where his wife is taking a job with a charity — sarcastically tweeted at Sun News about whether they would be running a "two-part hit job on that dirty red @TonyclementCPC." Looks like that's exactly what they're doing.

Clement responded to Wicary that his point was to celebrate things other than Bethune's communism and that "you chose to live in a communist country. Big difference." Clement was met with a barrage of criticism online for the comment, with many pointing out the apparent hypocrisy between celebrating Bethune and bashing a Canadian for moving to a communist nation.

It seems Sun News doesn't want to be charged with the same hypocrisy.

Loading Slideshow...
  • Guess Who

    A young Chinese communist in 1927.

  • Mao Zedong

    Chinese communist leader Chairman Mao Zedong (L) welcomes U.S. President Richard Nixon to his house in the Beijing Forbidden City on February 22, 1972. President Nixon urged China to join the United States in 'a long march together, not in lockstep, but on different roads leading to the same goal, the goal of building a world structure of peace'.

  • Guess Who

    A budding Georgian revolutionary in his mid-twenties.

  • Joseph Stalin

    Then-Soviet leader Joseph Stalin in 1936.

  • Guess Who

    A 1916 photo of a young corporal.

  • Adolf Hitler

    A picture dated 1939 shows German Nazi Chancellor and dictator Adolf Hitler (C) consulting a geographical survey map with his general staff including Heinrich Himmler (L) and Martin Bormann (R) at an unlocated place during World War II.

  • Guess Who

    A wealthy young Russian in 1887.

  • Lenin

    Portrait dated May 1919 of Vladimir Illyich Ulianov (1870-1924) better known as Lenin, as he delivers a speech during the parade of the general training troops. Lenin led in October 1917 the communist revolution, founded the Soviet armed forces, the Red Army, and became head of the first Soviet government.

  • Guess Who

    A young man listens intently in July 1953. (AFP/Getty Images)

  • Fidel Castro

    In this photo released on Feb. 4, 2012, by the state media website Cubadebate, Cuba's leader Fidel Castro listens during the presentation of his book 'Guerrillero del Tiempo,' or 'Time Warrior' in Havana, Cuba, Friday, Feb. 3, 2012. (AP Photo/Cubadebate, Roberto Chile)

  • Guess Who

    This politician pictured in 1976 would come to rule Rhodesia, renamed Zimbabwe, in 1980. (Photo by Keystone/Getty Images)

  • Robert Mugabe

    Robert Mugabe, President of Zimbabwe, looks on after delivering an address to the United Nations General Assembly at U.N. headquarters on September 22, 2011 in New York City. (Mario Tama/Getty Images)

  • Guess Who

    A future dictator in his hometown of Tikrit. Photo dated 1960. (Photo credit should read AFP/Getty Images)

  • Saddam Hussein

    In this Jan. 29, 2006, file photo, former Iraqi president Saddam Hussein gestures during his trial in Baghdad, Iraq. (AP Photo/Darko Bandic, File)

  • Guess Who

    The General circa 1950. (Photo by Keystone-France/Gamma-Keystone via Getty Images)

  • Mubutu Sese Koko

    Surrounded by bodyguards, Zairian President Mobutu Sese Seko is escorted into a car after arriving at Pointe Noire, Congo, Wednesday, May 14, 1997, for a scheduled meeting with Zairian rebel leader Laurent Kabila. (AP Photo/Peter Andrews)

  • Guess Who

    Just a schoolboy in this October, 1963, photo. (Korean Central News Agency/Korea News Service via AP Images)

  • Kim Jong Il

    In this photo released by the Korean Central News Agency and distributed in Tokyo by the Korea News Service, the body of North Korean leader Kim Jong Il is laid in a memorial palace in Pyongyang, North Korea, Tuesday, Dec. 20, 2011. Kim Jong Il died on Saturday, Dec. 17, North Korean state media announced Monday. (AP Photo/Korean Central News Agency via Korea News Service)

  • Guess Who

    Not so long ago... (AP Photo/Str)

  • Alexander Lukashenko

    Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko attends a meeting of Russian and Belarusian leadership in the Gorki residence outside Moscow, Russia, Friday, Nov. 25, 2011. Lukashenko <a href="" target="_hplink">has been called Europe's only remaining dictator</a>. (AP Photo/Maxim Shipenkov, Pool)

  • Guess Who

    The 70s were happier times for this handsome fellow. (AP Photo)

  • Muammar Gaddafi

    In this Sept. 8, 2010, file photo, Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi fans his face during the Forum of Kings, Princes, Sultans, Sheikhs and Mayors of Africa in Tripoli. (AP Photo/Abdel Magid Al Fergany, file)

  • Guess Who

    This president takes a shot while playing basketball in Kampala, Uganda, in a 1977 photo. Not much to our surprise, he beat the rival military team by a score of 10-0. (AP Photo / Richard Tomkins).

  • Idi Amin

    Former Ugandan President Idi Amin looking relaxed, circa 1980. (Photo by Keystone/HultonArchive/Getty Images)

  • Guess Who

    Rebel leader shows off new recruits for his army on Feb. 12, 1997. (AP Photo/Jean-Marc Bouju)

  • Laurent-Desire Kabila

    Laurent-Desire Kabila's coffin is carried by Congolese officers January 21, 2001, upon its arrival from Lumumbashi at n'Djili airport in Kinshasa. Joseph Kabila (C-in black), appointed as Kabila's successor, follows his father's coffin. (DESIREY MINKOH/AFP/Getty Images)

  • Guess Who

    Then-vice president lifts an eyebrow on May 11, 1975. (AP Photo/Tayeb)

  • Hosni Mubarak

    Former Egyptian president Hosni Mubarak is wheeled into court in Cairo, Egypt, Sunday, Jan. 29, 2012. Defense attorneys for Egypt's Interior Minister argued Sunday that thugs and armed men killed protesters and said some relatives of those killed in the uprising are only seeking compensation. Mubarak, his former interior minister and four top security officers are being tried for complicity in the deaths of hundreds of protesters at the hands of security forces during the Jan. 25, 2011 uprising. The six face the death penalty if convicted. (AP Photo/Mohammed al-Law)

  • Guess Who

    A military ruler smiles on July 24, 1989. (ALEXANDER JOE/AFP/Getty Images)

  • Omar Al Bashir

    Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir speaks to reporters during a visit to Tripoli, Libya, Saturday, Jan. 7, 2012. (AP Photo Abdel Magid al-Fergany)

  • Guess Who

    A Communist leader sneers in February 1988. (AFP/Getty Images)

  • Slobodan Milosevic

    Former Yugoslav President Slobodan Milosevic arrives to open his defence at the war crimes tribunal August 31, 2004, in The Hague, Netherlands. Milosevic was accused of war crimes, crimes against humanity and genocide in the wake of the war in the Balkans during the 1990's. (Photo by Michel Porro/Getty Images)

  • Guess Who

    The man second from the left in this undated family photo would rise to power by coincidence. (LOUAI BESHARA/AFP/Getty Images)

  • Bashar Assad

    In this photo released by the Syrian official news agency SANA, Syrian President Bashar Assad, right, waves to his supporters after he attended the prayer of Eid Al Adha, at the al-Nour Mosque in the northern town of Raqqa, Syria, on Sunday, Nov. 6, 2011. (AP Photo/SANA)

  • Guess Who

    Former prime minister waves to the cheering crowd November 7, 1987, after being sworn in as president. (JOEL ROBINE/AFP/Getty Images)

  • Zine El Abidine Ben Ali

    In this file photo released Dec. 28, 2010, by the Tunisian Presidency office, Tunisia's President Zine El Abidine Ben Ali, left, visits Mohamed Bouazizi, a young man who set himself on fire acting out of desperation after police confiscated the fruits and vegetables he sold without a permit, at Ben Arous Burn and Trauma Centre, in Tunis. The Tunisian unrest began after Bouazizi set himself on fire when police in the central town of Sidi Bouzid confiscated the fruits he was selling without a permit. A Tunisian court has dropped charges against a policewoman whose dispute with Mohamed Bouazizi sparked a chain of events that unleashed uprisings around the Arab world. The case against the policewoman was closed after the vendor's family withdrew its original complaint. (AP Photo/Tunisian Presidency, File)

  • Guess Who

    Man with impressive moustache attends emergency Arab Summit on November 11, 1987 in Amman, Jordan. (NABIL ISMAIL/AFP/Getty Images)

  • Ali Abdullah Saleh

    In this Feb. 5, 2012 file photo, Yemeni President Ali Abdullah Saleh waves to people protesting his presence in the United States as he exits a hotel in New York. Saleh is in the U.S. protected by diplomatic immunity while he receives treatment of burns he suffered during an assassination attempt in June. A Human Rights Watch report released Wednesday, Feb. 8, 2012 said Saleh ordered a crackdown on Arab Spring protesters that killed at least 120 people in just one city. (AP Photo/Seth Wenig, File)

Loading Slideshow...
  • Stephen Wicary

  • Stephen Wicary

  • Tony Clement

  • Stephen Wicary

  • Tony Clement

  • Stephen Wicary

  • Stephen Wicary

  • James Cudmore

  • marthawatt

  • James McKee

  • Jennifer Ditchburn

  • marionetta

  • Adam Stirling

  • Fern Hill

  • Gloatessa

  • Glen McGregor

  • Marty Chan

  • kady o'malley

  • Stephen Lautens