Friday, December 05, 2008

Service and country

In a message to two members of Parliament - one Conservative and one Liberal - a retired Vice-Admiral has written.

As you both may be aware I contributed financially towards your recent re-election - not because of your Party affiliations but because I know and respect both of you.

Regretfully, I am too old now to serve Canada in any political capacity. However, I did serve faithfully for 38 years in the RCN and the Canadian Armed Forces - including in NDHQ, as a Rear Admiral and Vice Admiral, where I had the honour to serve both under Liberal and Conservative Ministers of National Defence. In every instance they received my complete respect and loyalty regardless of Party.

My father also served in Canada's Navy for 37 years from 1909 to 1946. He commanded several RCN ships and both coasts, and was ultimately the Commanding Officer Pacific Coast during the last three years of World War II.

His father was Speaker of the House of Commons, during the Laurier Government, then was Minister of Inland Revenue, then Minister of Marine and Fisheries (in which capacity he became the founding Minister of the Royal Canadian Navy), then served as Justice of the Supreme Court of Canada, and ultimately died in office as Lieutenant Governor of Quebec. He devoted his entire life to Canada.

On behalf of three generations who have devoted their lives to Canada, I unequivocally condemn the power grabbing political charade now taking place in Parliament.

We are witnessing a deplorable and juvenile scene which demeans its participants, and also further erodes the residual prestige of a Canada which in both World Wars achieved greatness and international respect. Politicians and their sycophants delude themselves into believing that Canada has influence and prestige in the modern world. Compared to the Canadian international influence and prestige I witnessed in the 1950's we have become moralizing nonentities who are recognizably no longer even capable of constructing our own warships, submarines and military aircraft; and will soon become totally dependent on other nations for even our means of defence.

When a terrorist crisis hits Canada - and someday it undoubtedly will - the politicians will scurry about seeking who to blame for lack of capability or preparedness. I can save them the trouble - look in the mirror! Make it a long look if you come from the NDP - the political party which has consistently opposed defence spending over the past three decades!

So this obviously dysfunctional consortia is about to approach the Governor General seeking her concurrence to form the next government? Ask yourselves how Her Excellency will be able to reconcile the fact that Canadian soldiers, of whom she is the Commander-in-Chief, are fighting, and dying for Canada in Afghanistan; while Canadian politicians are obsessed with power grabbing. Our military are not stupid - how long can they be expected to put their lives on the line under those circumstances?

There was a stunning contrast yesterday between the statesmanship displayed by President-Elect Obama with his National Security Team and the complete lack of statesmanship in Canada's Parliament. A great many Canadians will have noted that contrast and be disgusted with Canada's politicians.

I realize that you are only two Members of Parliament among many. I can only hope that my words and my respect for you may assist you in bringing your colleagues to their senses.
Babbler's Update: Looks like CP received a copy of the letter and neither bothered to ask the author's permission to reprint it, nor even thought of holding back the names involved. Classy stuff.

Mark's update: More at

And now this from another Canadian
Some things the readership needs to understand about this incredibly serious crisis in Canada:

1) The Governor General is a political appointment. In the past it was supposed to be a wise man of stature, experience, and ability. The current GG, who has none of these attributes, was appointed by
the Liberal Party when they were in government several years ago. Guess where her sympathies lie.

2) The GG is Haitian. Many of us have for years speculated that she was made GG so that the Liberals could get the 60 000 Haitians in Montreal to vote en mass for them. The GG's husband is a former terrorist sympathizer and apparently retains French citizenship, as does Stephane Dion, the prime minister-in-waiting who apparently is a dual-citizen in France. I question the loyalty of anybody who continues to hold dual-citizenship at such a high level.

3) Despite the disinformation, the issue here is not Harper's alleged economic 'malfeasance': it's whether we want the separatist Bloc being part of a coalition government of a country they want to secede from. The fact that the NDP and the Liberals have gotten into bed with them is downright insane and unthinkable on the Canadian political scene. The Liberal Party deployed troops into Quebec in 1970 to suppress separatism. The fact that they will do anything, even the unthinkable, to get back into power, means they shouldn't be in power at all. The current situation may lead to a Western separatist movement and split the country. These are very, very high stakes and it is a very dangerous game.

I was in Bosnia, Croatia, Kosovo and Macedonia in the 1990s. Now I know how the Yugoslavs felt in 1991.

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