Thursday, November 20, 2014

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

November 12 - remembering the wounded

Veterans Transition Network
Canadian Veterans Advocacy

 
Last Thursday, Blais’s advocacy group joined a coalition of other veterans’ organizations to demand better federal support for injured and retired soldiers and their families. The coalition announced its members would not pose for photo ops or allow themselves to be quoted in federal press releases until Ottawa improved its treatment of its veterans.
That same coalition is expected to target the Royal Canadian Legion in another news conference Wednesday, when it will criticize that organization for failing to push harder for its veterans.“They’re not being treated well,” Blais said of Canada’s war veterans. “The sacred obligation is not being fulfilled.”
The coalition of veterans’ organizations say the government is not providing adequate health and retirement benefits for injured soldiers and those dealing with mental health issues. They’re also upset over the government’s recent move to close a number of Veterans’ Affairs offices around the country.


Read more: http://www.ctvnews.ca/canada/vets-demanding-better-treatment-from-feds-remember-the-living-too-1.2098050#ixzz3IqIPgmIx

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

"Revenge is sour"

A George Orwell essay



"Unfortunately, there is often a need of some concrete incident before one can discover the real state of one’s feelings. Here is another memory from Germany. A few hours after Stuttgart was captured by the French army, a Belgian journalist and myself entered the town, which was still in some disorder. The Belgian had been broadcasting throughout the war for the European Service of the BBC, and, like nearly all Frenchmen or Belgians, he had a very much tougher attitude towards ‘the Boche’ than an Englishman or an American would have. All the main bridges into town had been blown up, and we had to enter by a small footbridge which the Germans had evidently mad efforts to defend. A dead German soldier was lying supine at the foot of the steps. His face was a waxy yellow. On his breast someone had laid a bunch of the lilac which was blooming everywhere.

"The Belgian averted his face as we went past. When we were well over the bridge he confided to me that this was the first time he had seen a dead man. I suppose he was thirty five years old, and for four years he had been doing war propaganda over the radio. For several days after this, his attitude was quite different from what it had been earlier. He looked with disgust at the bomb-wrecked town and the humiliation the Germans were undergoing, and even on one occasion intervened to prevent a particularly bad bit of looting. When he left, he gave the residue of the coffee we had brought with us to the Germans on whom we were billeted. A week earlier he would probably have been scandalized at the idea of giving coffee to a ‘Boche’. But his feelings, he told me, had undergone a change at the sight of “ce pauvre mort” beside the bridge: it had suddenly brought home to him the meaning of war. And yet, if we had happened to enter the town by another route, he might have been spared the experience of seeing one corpse out of the — perhaps — twenty million that the war has produced."


http://georgeorwellnovels.com/essays/revenge-is-sour/

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Bird, Fortune, and Canadian Terrorism



INTERVIEWER
Major George Parr, you are the RCMP Assistant Deputy Commissioner for Counter-terrorism Intelligence.

GEORGE PARR
Yes, I am.

INTERVIEWER
Thank-you for taking the time to speak to us during a period of what must be considerable strain for the Force.

GEORGE PARR
Yes, it is pretty stressful but we think it's important that the public should fully understand how we approach such barbaric crimes as we have just witnessed, to reassure them that public safety is well protected.

INTERVIEWER
The Prime Minister has said that tougher laws are needed, including "preventative detention."

GEORGE PARR
You'll have to ask him about that. Our job is not to make the law but enforce it as best we can.  The job is easier when the public understands our role and supports us.

INTERVIEWER
I'm sure most Canadians would agree.  As reported by the CBC, the RCMP Commissioner, Bob Paulson, made the following comments:
Paulson said the video, as reported Sunday by CBC News, was broadly related to Canadian foreign policy and that the gunman makes reference to "Allah" in the video.

He said the video, which is still being analyzed by police, appeared to have been made "on [Zehaf-Bibeau's] own device." 
"Our belief is that it has not gone anywhere else, but it may have gone elsewhere," Paulson said in remarks to reporters after his appearance Monday before the Senate's national security committee.
News of the video first emerged late Sunday when the RCMP issued a statement announcing its existence and describing it as evidence that Zehaf Bibeau was "driven by ideological and political motives."
Pauslon said investigators don't yet know if Zehaf-Bibeau shared his intentions to launch a violent attack. He added RCMP are working on a "detailed timeline" to satisfy themselves no one else was involved


GEORGE PARR
Yes I am aware of that, but like the Commissioner I can't discuss the details.

INTERVIEWER
And the Prime Minister has repeatedly referred to these events as terrorism.

GEORGE PARR
I am aware of that as well, as you might imagine.

INTERVIEWER
In June of this year, a young man in Moncton named Justin Bourque confessed to the murder of three RCMP officers and the wounding of two others.

GEORGE PARR
Another dark day for the Force.  We're following the sentencing hearing closely. 

INTERVIEWER
The Prime Minister has not referred to these equally barbaric crimes as "terrorism."

GEORGE PARR
That's because the two are very different.

INTERVIEWER
How so?

GEORGE PARR
I think that's pretty obvious to most people, including the public. There is evidence that Bibeau had made reference to jihad and ISIS and Allah, as Commissioner Paulson has said, and Bibeau was also trying to get to Syria.

INTERVIEWER
I believe that was corrected to Saudi Arabia, a mistranslation of Syria.

GEORGE PARR
Easy to happen, they're both Arab countries in the Middle East and they both start with "S".

INTERVIEWER
Well, let's say it was Syria. How does all that add up to terrorism, whereas that is not the case for Bourque.

GEORGE PARR
As I said, our job is to enforce the law, and in this case that law is in the Criminal Code of Canada.

INTERVIEWER
Section 83.01

GEORGE PARR
Yes.  How did you know that?

INTERVIEWER
I read it.

GEORGE PARR
How did you get a copy of the Criminal Code?

INTERVIEWER
It's a public document. Anybody can read it.  It's in libraries.

GEORGE PARR
Is that so?  The Prime Minister might be on to something.

INTERVIEWER
Are you saying Canadian citizens shouldn't have access to their own laws?

GEORGE PARR
As I said, our job is to enforce the law, which means that if you break it you'll be hearing from us.

INTERVIEWER
Whatever.  Terrorism is dealt with in a relatively new section, 83.01.

GEORGE PARR
Is it?

INTERVIEWER
Yes, and the definition seems to relate only to motive.

GEORGE PARR
It's very important, motive.

INTERVIEWER
Well, what was Justin Bourque's motive?

GEORGE PARR
He wanted to kill cops.

INTERVIEWER
But why?

GEORGE PARR
Who knows?  The important thing is he gets locked up forever.

INTERVIEWER
You just said motive is crucial to crime.

GEORGE PARR
It's crucial to terrorism, not to crime.

INTERVIEWER
What's the difference?

GEORGE PARR
I think we're going in circles here.  It's spelled out in Section 83.01 of the Criminal Code which unfortunately seems to be public knowledge.

INTERVIEWER
So allow me - it being public knowledge - to read the definition of terrorism adopted by the Canadian government.

GEORGE PARR
Sure.

INTERVIEWER
Section 83.01(a) just recites the crimes that were already terrorism before the Air India Flight 182 bombing in 1985.

GEORGE PARR
What Air India bombing?

INTERVIEWER
The one that Justice Major said was due to colossal screw-ups by the Government of Canada and its agencies, despite being told that an attack was imminent, who then tried, and continue to try, to bury the evidence.

GEORGE PARR
Oh that Air India bombing.  That was a long time ago.  World a different place.

INTERVIEWER
But the part you're talking about is 83.01(b) that defines a terrorist act as....

GEORGE PARR
Wait a minute...

INTERVIEWER
  • an act or omission, in or outside Canada,
    • (i) that is committed
      • (A) in whole or in part for a political, religious or ideological purpose, objective or cause, and
      • (B) in whole or in part with the intention of intimidating the public, or a segment of the public, with regard to its security, including its economic security, or compelling a person, a government or a domestic or an international organization to do or to refrain from doing any act, whether the public or the person, government or organization is inside or outside Canada, and
    • (ii) that intentionally
      • (A) causes death or serious bodily harm to a person by the use of violence,
      • (B) endangers a person’s life,
      • (C) causes a serious risk to the health or safety of the public or any segment of the public,
      • (D) causes substantial property damage, whether to public or private property, if causing such damage is likely to result in the conduct or harm referred to in any of clauses (A) to (C), or
      • (E) causes serious interference with or serious disruption of an essential service, facility or system, whether public or private, other than as a result of advocacy, protest, dissent or stoppage of work that is not intended to result in the conduct or harm referred to in any of clauses (A) to (C),
GEORGE PARR
There you go.  Commissioner Paulson is discussing evidence that Bibeau had a "political, religious or ideological purpose, objective or cause motive." If proven in open court, which unfortunately still seems to be necessary, then he has committed terrorism.

INTERVIEWER
How is that different from Bourque?

GEORGE PARR
Bourque didn't have "political, religious or ideological purpose, objective or cause."

INTERVIEWER
So what does "ideological" mean, as used in the Criminal Code?

GEORGE PARR
It means the terrorist had an idea.

INTERVIEWER
You're right, we're going in circles. You said before that an idea is what defines the crime of terrorism.  Justin Bourque had an idea. He said he wanted to target the oil and gas industry.

GEORGE PARR
Yes, I guess that could make him an eco-terrorist, but the fact is he didn't attack the oil and gas industry, so he's not a terrorist.

INTERVIEWER
I'm getting a little confused...

GEORGE PARR
You shouldn't worry about it and just leave the Criminal Code to us trained professionals.

INTERVIEWER
So what about religious motivation.  Are you saying Bibeau had religious motivation?

GEORGE PARR
Duh.  He went to a mosque.

INTERVIEWER
About a billion people on the planet go to mosques.  So what religious purpose....

GEORGE PARR
No idea, he's dead.  I'm not a mind reader.

INTERVIEWER
What about "political?"

GEORGE PARR
That's in Section 83.01?

INTERVIEWER
YES....IT...IS

GEORGE PARR
What does political mean?

INTERVIEWER
THAT'S WHAT I'M ASKING YOU!!

GEORGE PARR
I guess it means the terrorist has a political opinion.

INTERVIEWER
And does the RCMP have a Political Squad, so it can tell?

GEORGE PARR
Tell what?

INTERVIEWER
Tell whether a criminal has a political motive, one that would make Bourque a criminal and Bibeau a terrorist.

GEORGE PARR
I'm not aware Bibeau had a political motive, he wanted to be a jihadist.

INTERVIEWER
What's a "jihadist"?

GEORGE PARR
A religious terrorist.

INTERVIEWER
Jesus Christ, we already discussed that.  If Bibeau had NOT wanted to be a jihadist, but DID have a political motive, how would you know whether or not he was a terrorist?

GEORGE PARR
Look, I don't want to get into hypotheticals.

INTERVIEWER
So, forget the Criminal Code, what's your definition of a terrorist?

GEORGE PARR
I know one when I see one.

INTERVIEWER
Major George Parr, thanks for talking to us.

GEORGE PARR
No problem.  I still can't believe anybody can just read the Criminal Code if they feel like it.

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Bibeau and Bourque

What's the difference?




Statement of the Prime Minister of Canada on the death of three RCMP officers

5 June 2014

Statement by the Prime Minister of Canada on the death of three RCMP officers -

Prime Minister Stephen Harper today issued the following statement on the death of three RCMP officers, who were killed as a result of injuries sustained yesterday in Moncton, New Brunswick. During the course of this incident, two other RCMP officers also sustained injuries; however both are in stable condition.

“On behalf of all Canadians, Laureen and I offer our deepest condolences to the families, colleagues and friends of those affected by this tragedy. We also offer our prayers for the speedy recovery of those injured.

“This violent incident is a stark reminder that our men and women in law enforcement put their lives on the line in Canada every day to protect our citizens and communities.

“The sacrifice of these brave officers will be honoured and remembered.

“Our thoughts are with their families and loved ones in their time of need. This is a sad time for the people of Moncton, the people of New Brunswick and for Canada.”



22 October 2014
"My fellow Canadians: for the second time this week, there has been a brutal and violent attack on our soil.
Today our thoughts and prayers are with the family and friends of Cpl. Nathan Cirillo of the Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders. Cpl. Cirillo was killed today — murdered in cold blood — as he provided a ceremonial honour guard at Canada's National War Memorial, that sacred place that pays tribute to those who gave their lives so that we can live in a free, democratic and safe society.
Likewise, our thoughts and prayers remain also with the family and friends of Warrant Officer Patrice Vincent, who was killed earlier this week by an ISIL-inspired terrorist.
Tonight, we also pray for the speedy recovery of the others injured in these despicable attacks. 
Fellow Canadians, we've also been reminded today of the compassionate and courageous nature of so many Canadians  --  like those private citizens and first responders who came to provide aid to Cpl. Cirillo as he fought for his life.
And, of course, the members of our security forces — in the RCMP, the City of Ottawa police and in Parliament — who came quickly and at great risk to themselves to assist those of us who were close to the attack.
Fellow Canadians, in the days to come, we will learn more about the terrorist and any accomplices he may have had. But this week's events are a grim reminder that Canada is not immune to the types of terrorist attacks we have seen elsewhere around the world.
We are also reminded that attacks on our security personnel and on our institutions of governance are by their very nature, attacks on our country, on our values. on our society, on us Canadians as a free and democratic people who embrace human dignity for all. 
But let there be no misunderstanding. We will not be intimidated. Canada will never be intimidated. In fact, this will lead us to strengthen our resolve and redouble our efforts and those of our national security agencies to take all necessary steps to identify and counter threats and keep Canada safe here at home, just as it will lead us to strengthen our resolve and redouble our efforts to work with our allies around the world and fight against the terrorist organizations who brutalize those in other countries with the hope of bringing their savagery to our shores. They will have no safe haven.
While today has been without question a difficult day, I have every confidence that Canadians will pull together with the kind of firm solidarity that has seen our country through many challenges. 
Together we will remain vigilant against those at home or abroad who wish to harm us. For now, Laureen and Ben and Rachel and I join all Canadians in praying for those touched by today's attack. May God bless them and keep our land glorious and free."

The difference is obvious.  One is an act of senseless violence and the other is a terrorist attack by terrorists who want to intimidate us with terrorism.   

In the face ot this terrorist threat to Canada and Canadians, we must dispense with habeas corpus as a matter of national urgency and security.

Thank God we killed the gun registry.



Saturday, October 25, 2014

"The object of power is power."


Power is not a means, it is an end.  One does not establish a dictatorship in order to safeguard a revolution;  one makes the revolution in order to establish the dictatorship.  The object if persecution is persecution.  The object of torture is torture.  The object of power is power.
George Orwell

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

NATO, Inc. - Syraq FAQ



1. What is NATO's role in Iraq and Syria?

We're trying to figure it out.  Many of us are involved of course, but it is far from clear who's in charge.  Maybe nobody.  It's starting to feel like Libya without any Security Council resolution.

2.  What about Resolution 2178?

Well, the good news is that it was passed unanimously.  The bad news is that's about all you can say.  There was a lot of ranting about terrorism without any Chapter VII clause permitting any military action whatever.

3.  What would be the best possible outcome for NATO?

The best would be some proper military organization controlled from NATO HQ and then a lot of bombing.

4.  What will bombing accomplish?

Pretty much what bombing North Vietnam did. The population gets very pissed off for a very long time and those doing the bombing have to leave.  The human and cultural disintegration takes generations to heal.

5.  Isn't that a disaster?

Are you on the side of the terrorists?

6.  Is everybody being bombed a terrorist?

Of course, or we wouldn't be bombing them.

7.  What about the crisis for western civilization in the Ukraine?

Ukraine?