Wednesday, April 26, 2006

Privacy for Harper

Let's not use the families of the fallen as the excuse for the Harpocrites draconian decision to ban the media from CFB Trenton. That is shameful and crass politicking as it gets. Or indeed for the reason the government refuses to fly the flag at half mast. Father of dead soldier wants flag lowered, MP says

Defense Minister O'Connor in defending the indefensible actually said in question period today that the media should show up at family funerals instead. Yep he said that. He also said that the arrival of the fallen at Trenton would be the first opportunity for the families to see their sons, fathers, husbands and brothers. Yes them and hundreds of dignitaries.

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The arrival of the bodies of our fallen soldiers arrive at Trenton is not for a private viewing by the family but for the full state reception, the military brass, the DND officials, the minister and other government members, representatives of the queen, and other politicians are present. It is a day and should be a day of national morning, since War is a public affair, not a private affair, that went out with the days of Richard the Lion Hearted.

And all Canada should share in the grief. The families private funeral is the time for their privacy. But then again O'Connor never consulted the families on this policy.
Military families criticize new media policy

The real reason is simple, it's to protect the Harper. You see he will not be showing up at all the arrivals in fact he failed to show up yesterday.

And there are going to be more and more as this war continues. The fact he missed this arrival for the four most recently killed shows he is a more chicken than hawk. These deaths are a direct result of his stroke of the pen.

Canada leader accused of trying to de-emphasize danger to troops

We know that all that very well contrived media hype of his trip to Kandahar was. Just another attempt to look like his mentor; George Bush. Just like this policy is an imitation of Bush's Dayton policy. Cause Bush doesn't visit there either when the body bags come home.

The Tories are using the families of our fallen as a human shield to protect Harper.
That is the lowest of low in politics. And the Tories have hit rock bottom with this one. In all the bruhaha about the families, the Harper was not noticed missing in action. If one were cynical one would believe the PMO thought they could pull off a fast one by using the flag and banning the media as a smokescreen so they wouldn't notice his nibs abscence.

Harper decided arbitrarily to take over the American operations in Kandahar. For what reason we do not know. Did Bush ask him too? Likely. Because this operation is seperate from the British/NATO operation that was only launched last week in the North of Afghanistan. The Americans are now concentrating on finding bin Laden, while Canadians are left to handle the Taliban and Opium War Lords around Kandahar.

The Canadian Armed Forces were sent to war in Afghanistan by stealth and Harper and Defence Minister Gordon O'Connor believe, incorrectly, will only be kept in Afghanistan by muzzling the truth about what is transpiring on the ground. This approach has not worked for U.S. President George W. Bush and it most certainly will not work for Harper. Very extensive and oppressive media censorship during World Wars I and II is no longer acceptable in contemporary democratic societies. The age of deference to political and religious authority is long past. War is not a private matter. It is the most public of all public policies. The Canadian state, which represents every Canadian citizen, is responsible for arming and engaging Canadian soldiers to kill on its behalf. Canadian citizens have a right and a responsibility to know what is transpiring on the battleground, even if the news is unpalatable and, on occasion, downright depressing. Michael D. Behiels, Professor of Canadian History, University of Ottawa


The real reason that the media was banned is that Harper failed to show, and had no intention of showing up for the arrival of the four most recent fallen soldiers. Men who died by the stroke of his pen. Coward.




Media ‘not allowed’

Casualties of war hidden from the public eye

news1a_0426_article

J.P. MOCZULSKI/REUTERS

The flag-draped casket, containing the body of one of four Canadian soldiers killed in Afghanistan, is carried to a hearse after being unloaded from a military transport plane at the air force base in Trenton, Ont., yesterday.

The airport ceremony was precise, well-practised, and for the first time in years, private and off limits to reporters. This is the new face of Canada’s war in Afghanistan.

A military Airbus, bearing the bodies of the four Canadian soldiers killed in Saturday’s roadside blast north of Kandahar, touched down at this eastern Ontario air base at 6.25 p.m. yesterday.

But in sharp contrast to the reception given Canada’s “fallen heroes” in the past, the government tried to bring the latest casualties of the Afghan conflict home away from public eyes.

news1b_0426_article

JONATHAN HAYWARD/CANADIAN PRESS

Anne Bennett and her son Brandon show support for the four soldiers killed on Saturday by standing at the main gate to CFB Trenton with a flag at half-mast yesterday.

The bodies of Cpl. Matthew Dinning of Richmond Hill, Bombardier Myles Mansell, of Victoria, Lieut. William Turner, of Toronto, and Cpl. Randy Payne, from CFB Wainwright, Alta. were returned to Canadian soil — and the care of grieving family members last night. A beefed up cadre of military police officers patrolled the property to keep reporters and photographers off the base.

“Here in Trenton, you’re not allowed on any (defence department) property,” Capt. Nicole Meszaros told one reporter



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1 comment:

Dylan said...

The media being banned from attending the returning caskets is disgusting and just another link in the chain that Harper wants to put on free speech and the media in this country!