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Strong, principled action


 

Lawrence Cannon, todayThe reasons behind our decision to boycott may be obvious, but are nonetheless worth repeating. Firstly, Iran has violated the human rights of its own citizens and foreign nationals, including Canadians Maziar Bahari (by unjustifiably detaining him) and Zahra Kazemi (whose death remains unexplained). This recently also has been demonstrated in its violent response against protestors following the fraudulent presidential election.

Michael Petrou, Nov. 20, 2008Vafaseresht, a man who surely would have been a valuable witness and source of information for any legal case Canada might compile against Saeed Mortazavi, hasn’t been in touch with any Canadian diplomats or government officials since. It’s a stunning oversight, if one assumes that Stephen Harper was sincere when he said that Canada had not “dropped” the matter of Kazemi’s murder. But the available evidence suggests that Canada still isn’t serious about building a case against Mortazavi. Maclean’s interviewed Shahram Azam, a former staff physician in Iran’s Defence Ministry, who examined Kazemi four days after her arrest and found evidence of torture. Azam, who now lives in Canada and is willing to testify against Mortazavi, says no one from the Canadian government has contacted him about Kazemi since he arrived more than three years ago. Rodney Moore, a spokesman at Foreign Affairs, said that Canada did not consider the Kazemi case resolved but could not confirm if there is an ongoing investigation or extradition request, nor could a spokesperson for the Department of Justice.


 

Strong, principled action

  1. There is a reason Wherry so often comments on Foreign Affairs issues, the opportunity for the media to mislead is greatest there – due to the fact that most of the work done by the department necessarily has to be cloaked.

    • Give it up bud. Your constant whining about AW is tiresome. If you don't like him don't read him. I don't spend all my time over on S.Taylor's blog railing against him even though i think he torques some of his pieces – so, why are you?

      • I don't think Taylor puts on a facade of being impartial. And my complaints regarding Wherry have nothing at all to do with the ideological leanings, just the weakness of the arguments and the fact that there is an attempt to pass it off as credible journalism. Wherry is certainly capable of credible journalism, so my hope springs eternal.

        • The MSM media has swung wildly to the right in the past couple of years. Anything sympathetic to a centre left point of view just jumps out. The Harper people have really established themselves as virtually untouchable. He can get away with any absurdity or contradiction or inconsistency with impunity. Critics are seen as left wing cranks.
          The Cons were so easily able to bring the focus away from them over to Ignatieff that it's scary.

          My conspiracy theory is that the MSM including this outlet, but mainly the TV networks know that if the Conservatives get a majority the CBC will be dismantled and sold off to the privates.This frees up a lot of advertising revenue, and silences a progressive voice. A Harper majority benefits a lot of established interests.
          And don't blame me, you started the discussion down this unrelated path.

          • It's not journalism.

            It's a blog. With posting by a journalist.

          • So there is no expectation of a professional standard of material contributed?

          • Not by me. And besides, I have no idea what that means in this context.

          • I guess when Ed starts using some, the rest of us will follow…

        • Did you happen to notice that Wherry is highlighting the work of a MacLean's reporter?

          The only problem I have with Wherry is that, for some reason, he's not allowed to respond to these dreary cookie-cutter complaints people (usually righties) about him of posts that he's spent of all two minutes on.

          If you don't like it, or require more in-depth information on this issue, there are plenty of other places you can go.

          • Since when did the blogosphere become a place where one's utterings go unquestioned?

          • Since when did the blogosphere become a place where one's utterings go unquestioned?

            And the idea that Wherry couldn't respond if he wanted to, is ridiculous.

          • I was being sarcastic.

        • It's worth remembering that yesterday Mr. Wherry was with the cynics on this issue:

          "Using, oddly enough, the same term he employed to question Michael Ignatieff's decision to wish Brian Mulroney a happy birthday, the Prime Minister explains why no Canadian officials will be in the room when the Iranian president addresses the UN General Assembly….

          If, then, Britain and the United States, for instance, fail to walk out this afternoon, do their leaders lack a moral compass? Are they giving Mr. Ahmadinejad legitimacy?…

          There is, as well, the argument that the Iranian president's remarks about the Holocaust are an elaborate dodge.

          • No fair remembering what Aaron wrote yesterday…….

          • It's worth remembering that Norman Spector once called Belinda Stronach a b*tch on live radio.

    • I'm with kcm – you constantly attacking Wherry is juvenile and pointless.

      All the Macleans bloggers seem to be posting interesting things in good faith and I don't see anything egregious here. Go somewhere else to complain.

      • I am interested in knowing whether or not you feel that the argument Wherry is advancing here, is well formulated, and whether or not the links provide a credible amount of information to base a rational opinion upon, and whether, in foreign affairs cases, we routinely get enough information on individual cases to make a reasoned judgment on that case, or is it only in very extraordinary cases and well after the fact that most of the information comes to light?

        • All that from a blog post? Which no one pays for?

          • Macleans is offering something for public consumption and discourse, I am offering my take for public consumption, you offer yours. If Macleans wasn't interested in public comments to their blogs, they wouldn't have that functionality.

        • It's a blog.

          I am interested in knowing whether or not you feel that the run-on sentence is appropriate in blog comments as well as real life, and also why you seem to reflexively reply to every Wherry post to complain about the author, making no contribution to the discussion except to make this place more noisy and tiresome. Also.

          • Actually, if you look hard enough, you will find Wherry posts I have replied to in glowing terms. How is there no contribution in my posts here? Is there one that I have not raised an issue? I began by raising the issue of the nature of foreign affairs cases, yet no one has cared to continue that dialogue, preferring to offer up defenses for the embattled Wherry.

          • Actually, if you look hard enough, you find Wherry posts I have replied to in glowing terms. How is there no contribution in my posts here? Is there one that I have not raised an issue? I began by raising the issue of the nature of foreign affairs cases, yet no one has cared to continue that dialogue, preferring to offer up defenses for the embattled Wherry.

          • Actually, if you look hard enough, you find Wherry posts I have replied to in glowing terms. How is there no contribution in my posts here? Is there one that I have not raised an issue? I began by raising the issue of the nature of foreign affairs cases, yet no one has cared to continue that dialogue, preferring to offer up defenses for the embattled Wherry.

        • Ah, the famous CON swill attack point — there isn't enough evidence to judge/decide! Thus creating the always advantageous defence tactic of taking NO action, doing nothing, which replaces the previously discredited 'blindly deny and denounce' (tho sadly, it remains still a well-used tool in the CON, and others, arsenal) policy.
          Global warming can't be true, there's still time to study the reasons to that melting ice. Banking regulations can't be good, because oh right next one…

    • I'm sure you'd complain as much if you agreed, right?

      I thought not.

      • Am I partial to my own opinions? Of course.

        Are you? Of course.

  2. I can't wait for my minus fifty rating on this comment, but, by Cannon's boycotting logic, we should be boycotting ourselves, for Canada's violations of the human rights of our Native populations, apologies notwithstanding, and for our abandonment of Canadian citizens detained abroad (and no, I'm not referring to Arar).

    There are lots of good reasons to boycott a speech to the UN. Human rights are one of them. It just sounds a bit rich, to me.

    • I don't think the historically abysmal record of the Canadian government in the treatment of aboriginals is caused by the purposeful intention to do aboriginals harm, certainly not in the past few decades. And if Canada doesn't pass the standard for calling for human rights, what country does?

    • Good point. And the United States is also holding one of our citizens without due process or repsect for international law. Maybe we can walk out on Obama's speech. Or is it only a human rights issue when the "enemy" does it?

      • It's Harper's duly and democratically* elected clause at work again

        *as deemed by conservative think tanks; other duly elected officials of leftist ideals are just special interest groups run amok!

  3. In the Globe it says Lawrence Cannon is going to give Ghadaffi heck over the Lockerbie bomber parade when the Libyan leader stops over in Newfoundland next week.

    After that he's going to tell Putin to keep his shirt on and Fidel Castro to have shorter speeches.

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