Who is Alexander “Sacha” Trudeau?  What to know about the Prime Minister’s brother

Who is Alexander “Sacha” Trudeau? What to know about the Prime Minister’s brother

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Sacha Trudeau is the second son of Pierre and Margaret Trudeau. He is a filmmaker and journalist, activist and former soldier

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Alexandre Trudeau, the prime minister’s younger brother, nicknamed Sacha after a famous child, is reportedly eager to testify before a parliamentary committee about his role in a controversial donation by a Chinese billionaire to the Trudeau Foundation. He says it’s “urgent”, but the committee has already voted to exempt him, as a family member. Filmmaker and journalist, activist and former soldier, and more refractory than his brother to public attention, the National Post outlines the biography of the young Trudeau.

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Who is Alexander Trudeau?

He is the second son of Pierre Trudeau and Margaret Trudeau, born two years after Justin, and also on Christmas Day. He is married to Zoe Bedos Trudeau and they have three children. Its name is said to have been inspired by the former Soviet ambassador to Canada Alexander Yakovlev. He served in the Canadian Forces, trained at CFB Gagetown, New Brunswick, and was commissioned as a Second Lieutenant in the Royal Canadian Hussars Reserve Regiment. He left the Forces after graduating from McGill University in 1997, then became a journalist and documentary filmmaker. He has worked in war zones in Liberia, Serbia, Haiti and Sudan, in Baghdad during the worst of the US invasion, as well as in Israel and Palestine. John English, the elder Trudeau’s biographer and former MP, said Sacha often pretended to be apolitical, and sometimes even didn’t vote, but English recognized something “deeply political” in him, even though he focused on more abstract philosophical questions. . “He’s really his father’s son in that regard,” English told Postmedia.

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Is he in politics?

He served as an adviser to Justin Trudeau’s campaign for Liberal leadership, and his name was tossed around in nomination talks, but he never ran for office. In some ways he was closer to the action as a documentary filmmaker and journalist. He took a militant stance against the use of security certificates against suspected terrorists who are not actually charged with crimes and offered the court to vouch for Hassan Almrei, whom he had interviewed. His association through this affair with influential members of the anti-imperialist left wing has also made him a prominent voice in debates against Canada’s involvement in the war in Afghanistan and Israel’s treatment of Gaza. But he usually only speaks publicly to promote a project, and rarely gives interviews.

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But he writes.

In 2016, he wrote Barbarian Lost: Travels in the New China, which deliberately echoes Two Innocents in Red China, a 1961 book by Pierre Trudeau and his journalist friend Jacques Hébert, later a senator. It has been well reviewed. But it received less attention than what he wrote in the Toronto Star in August 2006, under the title “The Last Days of the Patriarch”. It was ostensibly about the close connection between Pierre Trudeau and Fidel Castro, but it read like a lavish tribute that blatantly glossed over the dark side of Cuban communism in order to flatter “the most curious man I have ever known.” never met”, which is unequaled among the “simple managers” of geopolitics, with the possible exception of his fellow “patriarch”, Nelson Mandela. Trudeau was lambasted in the press, even in The Star which published him, for unreservedly praising this “visionary statesman” endowed with “inescapable rationality” and for asserting, in the last line , that “Cubans will always feel privileged that they, and they alone, had Fidel.

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Sasha Trudeau
Alexandre Trudeau speaks in Ottawa in 2017. Photo by Jean Levac

How did he get involved in the Trudeau Foundation?

When the first two dozen Pierre Elliott Trudeau Scholars were funded in 2002, Alexandre Trudeau was at the opening press conference as director of the new foundation. “My father had great expectations for this country,” he said. “On behalf of my entire family, I would like to thank the Canadian people for this very fitting tribute. Focused on human rights and social justice, federalism, responsible citizenship, Canada and the world, and humans and their natural environment, Trudeau said the scholarships “will change the country. In 10 or 20 years, they will bring us a new generation of extraordinary Canadians whose voices will be heard more clearly and deeply here and abroad. Not everyone bought it. The National Post’s editorial board called them “feathered scholarships” and said the government should have named a mountain after them instead. “This move would have spared Canadians the shameless intellectual chauvinism and nine-figure cost imposed on them by what is, in effect, a Trudeauphile-only scholarship.”

Has he ever been implicated in a charity financial scandal?

Now that you mention it, in 2020 the defunct WE charity empire admitted paying Alexandre Trudeau $40,000 for eight appearances in 2017 and 2018. His mother received significantly more.

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