Stand and salute


 

Dale Smith notes the Prime Minister received a salute from the governor general’s guard at yesterday’s Canada Day festivities. Susan Delacourt points to Global TV, which, via Heritage Minister James Moore, seems to confirm it was at the PM’s request.


 

Stand and salute

  1. that's just embarassing for Steve. A real leader doesn't demand respect, they get it without asking.

    besides, our soldiers know what to respect already.
    [youtube nDMzHlkB-Yg http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nDMzHlkB-Yg youtube]

  2. Saluting the democratically elected leader doesn't bother me. What does bother me is a Prime Minister who is more obsessed with stroking his over-bloated ego and playing political games rather than getting stuff done. Unfortunately there's no solid opposition… Duceppe wants to separate, Layton needs to step down, and Iggy seems, to me, the John Kerry of Canada.

  3. So has no previous Prime Minister ever received a salute from our soldiers? Or shared a reviewing stand with the Governor General?

    That seems a bit unlikely. What seems more likely is that this is another manufactured issue by those who simply dislike the PM and want to find something to complain about. It seems particularly ironic when such complaints come from supporters of the Liberal party, given their indifference-bordering-on-contempt for the armed forces for so much of their recent past.

    • What seems more likely is that this is another manufactured issue by those who simply dislike the PM and want to find something to complain about.

      Bingo!

      • C'mon ladies and gents. It's not a matter of making a mountain out of a mole hill, it's a matter of an MP who is the leader of the party with the current majority of votes int the HoC thinking that he has the power to require the military to salute him.

        Harper could be removed as PM tomorrow by a loss of confidence from his party (not likely, but part of the system) – he is not a lasting head of state.

        I would be equally miffed if Martin, Chretien or Trudeau demanded that same treatment from the military.

        Frankly, I'm surprised the Commander of the Guard allowed it.

        • He's our Head of Government, he has every right to a military salute (see below), it's entirely consistent with protocol and decades of practice, and it's a bit rich to watch all the squawking chickens here pile on about an issue they know nothing about.

      • perhaps…. but i would twist it a bit….it really is:

        a PM offering his detractors the chance to skewer him over something silly, by requesting treatment that is v. hard to understand in any manner except feeding his ego, regardless of the legitimacy or the historical frequency of said treatment.

        As for any connection to a broad smear of Libs and Lib-supporters contempt for the forces….well who is manufacturing now?

    • If they have, they shouldn't. The PM is not our head of state. There is protocol for these things, and the military should know better.

      I can just imagine the outrage there'd be if, say Paul Martin had demanded the military salute him.

      • Military personnel are required to salute civilians, in the appropriate circumstances, including politicians. The point here is that it is not unusual for a Prime Minister to attend a parade or to be on the reviewing stand. It is certainly not the first time a Prime Minister received a salute, and it is certainly not contrary to any protocol.

        If the PM asked to be part of the ceremony why not simply accept it as a sign of his respect for the armed forces and his desire to respect their contribution to society?

        • The point here is that the PM demanded this. Just like he wanted all journalists to stand when he entered the room. Just like he won't do scrums. Just like staffers being forced to line up and applaud when he enters and exits buildings.

          The point here is that Harper thinks he is above us all.

        • "why not simply accept it as a sign of his respect for the armed forces"

          because his request, from the info provided, does not appear to have been 'can i simply be on the stand'….the PM has "his respect for the armed forces and his desire to respect their contribution to society" none of which require him being saluted.

        • "why not simply accept it as a sign of his respect for the armed forces"

          because his request, from the info provided, does not appear to have been 'can i simply be on the stand'….the PM has "his respect for the armed forces and his desire to respect their contribution to society" none of which require him asking to be saluted.

        • Or his desire to deal with his daddy issues, and continue to play out his father’s amateur military historian hobby.

          Play soldiers, that’s all he’s done since he got on the payroll.

    • Simple, Mike. Find one and let us know.

      • There are people who dislike our PM ? Really ?

  4. Did Aaron just link to an advertising for squirt.org? What is that? A porn site?

  5. Well said Mike .. very well said.

  6. Good grief — the ego of this chump never ceases to amaze me. And I VOTED for him in the last election. I won't make that mistake again. No wonder this country is so ignorant of its history and traditions when boneheads like Harper do everything possible to obscure how things really work.

    Tell me Conservative flunkies, how does it feel to know you all are just a bunch of sorry pawns in Harper's power game?

    I guess when you have a 33% approval rating you have to do whatever it takes to make you feel whole.

    • This coming from one of the very few Canadians who idolizes George W. Bush?

  7. You sound like you need more fibre in the diet – an old Conservative remedy for what obviously ails you. Speaking as one of those flunkies I am somewhat flumoxed on how to respond … as I am unsure as to this wholeness you speak of? Could you perhaps elaborate and ask a question from a flunkie that is actually a question and not a clumsily hidden accusation because you are starting to sound like a Liberal during Question Period in the House!

  8. this reply was supposed to be with the arrogant one! –

  9. The facts. Soldier's salute the head of state. The head of state of Canada is the Queen. When the Queen's not here, her duly appointed representative the Governor-General fulfills her ceremonial duties. That includes receiving the salute of our armed forces. The PM is not the head of state, and should not be saluted.

    This is a very intentional part of our system and history of governance; the point is that our military do not owe loyalty to the government… they owe loyalty to the Dominion of Canada and her peoples, as personified by the Queen, or at times by her chosen representative the Governor-General of Canada when the Queen (or King) is not available to do so.

    The separation of the government from the head of state is in fact very intentional and wise; it is a tradition that was started long before there was a Canada to underscore the fact that we are a nation of laws, not men.

    Clearly, Harper doesn't feel that's the right approach to things… when he made that request, I'm sure that someone at the G-G's office would have explained this to him if he was not already aware of this important tradition and ceremonial symbol of where the true power in our country lies. This is basic civics for anyone who has lived in and been educated in a Westminster-style parliamentary democracy.

    Sort of like coalition governments.

    Interestingly, new citizens get taught this when they take the citizenship classes that are required to become a Canadian citizen. It seems like it's the nativists among us who've forgotten this central concept of our system of democracy.

    • Hear hear!

    • Well said!

      Irony abounds for a party that purports to uphold Canadian values and traditions ("Canada's back! True north strong and free! Standing up for Canada!") and bemoans such things like immigrants apparently not knowing enough about Canada's history and tradition, despite often scoring better than most native born canadians.

      And yet, it can unashamedly distort it for its own propagandist and political end…

    • "The facts"

      From Heritage Canada:

      Honours and salutes are accorded to the following dignitaries:

      Heads of state;
      The Queen's representatives in Canada
      Members of reigning royal families
      Heads of governments
      Ambassadors and high commissioners accredited to Canada; and
      Ministers of National Defence.

      This whole thread of commentary is completely full of bullsh*t experts and partisans who couldn't be bothered to google a quick verification of "the facts".

      • It's kind of sickening to watch these BS experts at work, claiming that it's somehow wrong for the military to salute the Prime Minister.

      • Yes – and when was that site modified? Oh – last year, or last month? And by whom?

        Have you not missed the bulletin? Harper is rewriting history and gutting/changing the way Canada is run. He’ll be having himself crowned next.

      • “The Facts” from Heritage Canada.

        LMAO!!!!

    • Actually, soldiers salute the PM, or any other representative of government who happens to be on a reviewing stand. This is, after all, a democracy, and the armed forces, as defenders of that democracy, of course, pay due respect to the elected representatives of the people. This is a silly, manufactured issue. Prime Ministers commonly take a salute from soldiers. Read QR&Os or the manual of protocol. This is not the first Prime Minister to review soldiers, nor will he be the last. (Mackenzie King may have been the only one to have been booed by them while doing so).

    • You obviously have no idea what you're talking about when you suggest that Canadian soldiers only salute Canada's Head of State, not Canada's Head of Government. Your credibility is pretty much shot.

      • I grew up in the Navy, we were posted to England, my father served with the RN for a time. We lived on bases all my life til I was 18. I never, ever saw anyone saluted aside from the Queen because she is the HEAD OF STATE FOR CANADA, or Prince Philip because he is head of the British Navy, or any other superior rank IN THE MILITARY. Or the Governor General, because he is the stand-in head of state. How is this so difficult to understand? A Naval Commander, or an Army General will always be saluted, even when he’s retired. Harper won’t be when he’s the hell out of office. Have you ever seen the military salute past Prime Ministers? No? Gee.

        WHY would the Canadian military salute someone who is going to be out of government at some time hopefully in the near future, and who will NEVER be saluted again? Harper doesn’t get this honour, he isn’t military, he isn’t head of state. He’s just there to do a job and failing.

  10. The small man of the prime ministers.

    • Awesome! Well put!

      • Yeah, fits right in with the fake narrative.

        • Could you please cite, define, refer to, point a finger at or provide some reference to the "fake narrative" you refer to?

          Then, if you'd be so kind could you do the same for the "real" narrative which, presumably, disproves the former?

          Thanks.

          • James, just read my other posts on this thread. Also, check out Mike R's. The "fake" narrative is that the PM somehow inappropriately demanded a military salute that he was not entitled to. This is utter bullsh*t.

          • THE MILITARY ISN’T SUPPOSED TO SALUTE THE PRIME MINISTER. HE IS ONLY A MINISTER WHO HAPPENS TO BE #1 IN HIS PARTY. HE IS NOT THE SOVEREIGN, NOR IS HE THE GOVERNOR GENERAL, NOR IS HE IN THE MILITARY WITH A SUPERIOR RANK. HE IS A POLITICIAN, AND A BAD ONE AT THAT.

            God you’re stupid.

    • This will be a “WTF WERE WE THINKING???” moment/decade in Canadian history.

  11. Harper? Isn't he the same guy who prevented the Commander-in-Chief (the GG) from visiting HER troops in Afghanistan, citing security concerns, then showed up himself and went "outside the wire" (groan). I recall the propriety of his saluting from the reviewing stand was also an issue during a parade back in 2006 for the same reason: he's just an MP — first among equals in cabinet, not a head of state and certainly not C in C. But he styles himself a president (hence the podiums and absence of scrums), and Canadians are so ignorant of their own laws and traditions, he really can get away with it. Sad. Petty in the grand scheme of things, but sad nonetheless.

    • Aaron seems to be one of the few at Press Gallery who is on the case in a regular way.

  12. Harper will do anything for a picture – in the National Post on February 12 I read that Go Transit had to take a train our of service for a photo op… " because Mr. Harper insisted the locomotive should face west. “Normally all our locomotives are east-facing,” a GO staffer told me. GO took it over to the VIA yards to turn it around, and then turned it back around after the PM departed)."… Then there was the Christmas card with the photo of Harper seemingly admiring numerous photos of himself, the removal of images of past Conservative leaders which were replaced by photographs of Mr. Narcisse himself in the waiting room of the HoC.

    I don't know if other prime ministers ever stood up beside a GG during this kind of military salute, but I don't recall a prime minister so in love with his image – and my living memory goes back to the days of Saint-Laurent.

    • I don’t understand it, because he is butt-ugly.
      He’s doing the same thing in Calgary. Shows up and demonstrates that he knows nothing about the area, doesn’t really care a whole hell of a lot except he can get photo-ops (unfortunately with that damned Mayor Nenshi who he’d really like to replace with Rutherford); and swan around in a helicopter before going home to Toronto.

  13. Smacks of some serious insecurity on the part of the PM, if you ask me. That he would be saluted is certainly not an issue but that he would DEMAND that salute, now that's just pathetic.

    • Wow, you're being obtuse. What evidence do you have that the PM demanded anything? (In capital letters, no less).

      You should click on Aaron's links. It was a protocol option available to the Prime Minister and he selected it.

      • I agree this is a non-issue, though I don't think our military should be asking dignitaries what kind of salute (if any) they want. They can salute whomever they please at the behest of their CO, and if you don't want it you have to stand there and take it, it's not your choice (although I don't see why you'd ever not want a salute).

      • James Moore clarified that it was requested by Harper. When the Prime Minister, especially this one, "requests" something, there is no difference from a "demand".

        • I see. So when Harper requests a ham sandwich for lunch, he's actually DEMANDING a ham sandwich. Look, our crazy, arrogant Prime Minister is demanding a ham sandwich again! The nerve of that tinpot tyrant!

          PolJunkie just finished telling us that the issue here was that the PM DEMANDED a salute (as opposed to merely requesting that protocol option, as he had every right to do.)

        • I see. So when Harper requests a ham sandwich for lunch, he's actually DEMANDING a ham sandwich. Look, our crazy, arrogant Prime Minister is demanding a ham sandwich again! The nerve of that tinpot tyrant!

          PolJunkie just finished telling us that the issue here was that the PM DEMANDED a salute (as opposed to merely requesting this protocol option, as he had every right to do.)

          • Demand or request. Same thing. No big deal. He's entitled to his entitlements.

            The point is not whether they should have saluted or not. The point is simply why does he care so much about such grandiosity?

            This has not been a regular practice. But he routinely wants to minimize the role of the GG in favour of himself. I can think of several examples off the top of my head. This is salute business is a little thing but there are many many little things like it. It so subtle but so obvious that an individual incident like this lights a bigger fire than it merits for that reason.

          • Stephen Harper routinely wants to minimise the role of GG in favour of himself? Hmm, those Tories ain't what they used to be.

            Bravo Stephen Harper, I salute you again.

          • Good for you. Perhaps you can serve as a doorman when he’s finally out of our capital city, and out of the House of Commons.

            You can sit at the end of the driveway and salute him when he leaves, and when he comes home again. Because you know he’ll be looking for volunteers. Harper is addicted to power that he doesn’t have to pay for personally.

            Maybe you could do that special German salute for him!! Maybe we can all do it – soon.

          • Stephen Harper routinely wants to minimise the role of the GG in favour of himself? Hmm, those Tories ain't what they used to be.

            Bravo Stephen Harper, I salute you again.

          • I sure hope that I live in a country where the Prime Minister does not have to REQUEST a ham sandwich.

            Bravo Stephen Harper, I salute you.

      • Because he’s a puffed up phoney, looking for approval.

    • Bingo

  14. The point here is that the PM demanded this. Just like he wanted all journalists to stand when he entered the room. Just like he won't do scrums. Just like staffers being forced to line up and applaud when he enters and exits buildings.

    The point here is that Harper thinks he is above us all.

  15. The point is, this is a perfectly normal thing for a Prime Minister to do. Mr. Harper is not the first Prime Minister to receive a salute while on a reviewing stand. This is absolutely normal behaviour for a Prime Minister and he received teh appropriate honours in return from the soldiers he was reviewing.

    • http://www.army.forces.gc.ca/land-terre/downloads

      Page 291 and 292 explain who receives what salute. (chapter 13, Annex A of The Heritage Structure of the Canadian Forces)

      The GG, The Queen, The President of the United States, and any head of State, are all entitled to Royal Salutes. The Prime Minister, the Minster of Defence, the generals of the Army are all entitled to a General Salute.

      As I didn't see the salute or hear the command, I cannot tell you if it was an appropriate salute or not. I suspect it was a General Salute.

      • Don't try to confuse anyone here with the facts. When people are determined to be outraged, they'll simply be outraged. If Mr. Harper said to anyone that it was a "nice day", his detractors would point to that as another proof his usual arrogance. Who is he to tell people whether their day is "nice" or not!

        Funny how Aaron Wherry writes about the poisonous atmosphere of partisanship in Ottawa and how destructive it is.. Some of the people reading his blog don't seem to understand his message. Or perhaps they think it only applies to people who support political parties other than they ones they do themselves.

        As you very helpfully point out, saluting a Prime Minister is an ordinary and expected part of military protocol. This is an entirely manufactured issue.

        • No it is not an ordinary part of military protocol.

          Are you in the military?? The Queen and the GG are the Sovereign and her representative. Harper is trying to elbow his way into where he does not belong. I hope she removes him.

  16. He is the first to demand it, though.

    And if the honours were "appropriate", they would be received automatically. He wouldn't have to demand it.

    Shameful.

  17. Yet again, embarrassed of Stephen Harper. but what's new?

  18. Mike R, are you deliberately being obtuse or do you really not understand what is being said here?

    The issue isn't that a Prime Minister received a salute from our soldiers. The issue is that he DEMANDED to have the said salute.

    • Well, first of all, there is no evidence he "demanded" anything. The issue of who will review soldiers, and what role the PM or other dignitaries might play on Canada Day or any other day is a matter of negotiation between the PMO and the organizers of the event. As I've said, this isn't the first time, obviously, that a PM has reviewed the troops or been on a reviewing stand at a parade. To pretend it is, or that this marks some hideous new level of Prime Ministerial egotism is just silly.

      • Well yes, actually, there is. James Moore in the Global video clip confirms that the order came from Harper.

        And yes, it was unusual for him to do so.

        Is it a "hideous new level of Prime Ministerial egotism"? No. Just more of the same from a PM who wants the press to stand when he enters the room, won't let the GG speak to the troops in Afghanistan, arranges for staffers to line the red carpet to applaud his entrances and exits, etc.

        So you are totally correct that this is not a "new" level. Harper set this level of egotism a long time ago.

        • Well, no, Mr. Moore doesn't report that the PM 'demanded" anything. As I said, this is a pretty normal way in which such things are arranged. Your statement that it was "unusual" appears to be without any foundation at all.

          Since when is it a mark of egotism for the Prime Minister to indicate he'd like to pay respect to our soldiers?

          (And, of course, the GG did go to Afghanistan, so that statment has as much substance as the rest of your complaints)

          As I said, if you want to indulge in the sort of hyper-partisanship which sees evil in any actions of those you see as your opponents, its a free country. But isn't that the type of behaviour which the PM's critics claim he demonstrates?

          • "Since when is it a mark of egotism for the Prime Minister to indicate he'd like to pay respect to our soldiers?"

            MikeR this is a silly line. again, PM has "his respect for the armed forces and his desire to respect their contribution to society" numerous means for demonstrating his respect for the forces, none of which require him asking to be saluted.

          • There is no way that Harper should be requesting the military salute him. The military salutes their superiors in rank in the military, or maybe the Queen.

            I grew up in the Navy, soldiers and sailors in my family in Canada and the US, and I’ve never heard of such a ridiculous thing – Harper has really shown himself to be a conceited jackass with delusions of grandeur.

            It just makes me a bit nervous wondering what the hell is he planning on doing to remain in office? This guy is so addicted to power he can’t function in the real world – oh wait, he never did.

          • REQUESTING a salute is NOT “showing respect for” the military.

            He is asking that the military show respect for him that he is not entitled to. He is not in the military, and he never will be. He never has been and his father never was, undoubtedly neither was his grandfather or great grandfather.

            I can’t believe that he would be so transparent about his ego, when he’s been lacking in transparency in everything else. Who does that??