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The Department of National Defence didn’t want Parliament to know how much it was going to spend building itself a new headquarters.

On the Nortel file, the documents show DND officials were worried last year about how the renovation costs would be perceived. “Media, parliamentarians and Canadians will be focused on the cost to taxpayers for the acquisition of the Campus and the subsequent retro-fit costs,” noted a DND strategy document.

Such concerns were solved when Deputy Minister Robert Fonberg stepped in. Fonberg’s assistant wrote that the deputy minister was concerned about telling the public about the cost. According to an email, Fonberg asked, “Why are we using the $623m(illion) fit up cost? It is without context and will be a lightning rod!” The cost was removed from public documents about the Nortel purchase.


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  1. Wait.. when I first read the news item in your “Need to Know” section, I didn’t get that it was a deputy minister that insisted on hiding the costs.

    That puts an entirely different spin on it.  It’s not DND officials that were worried about the public knowing too much… they had the amount in the report to begin with. It was the CPC administration that didn’t want us to know what’s going on.

  2. When the opposition leads off with a question on this matter in QP, I can already hear the response — from whoever decides to answer it.

    “Mr. Speaker, it should come as no surprise that I reject the premise and substance of the question. I can tell you, Mr. Speaker, that this government has always stood with our troops and in support of our troops. When, Mr. Speaker, will the opposition stop playing politics with our men and women and uniform?”

    Or something like that.

    • You forgot the part about the Liberals wanting a pedophile in every neighbourhood.

    • Watchit bud! We got copyright dips on that…and we know you like to hang out on Weary’s subversive  blog…treason isn’t just an abstract concept you know. Men and women have died in order that i could write those words…commie %&*$.

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