The Commons: ‘I have the feeling that nothing will satisfy the honourable gentleman’ - Macleans.ca
 

The Commons: ‘I have the feeling that nothing will satisfy the honourable gentleman’

Liberals cry out for “nothing but the truth” in detainee scandal


 

The Scene. Barely a week back and the government side is already tired of these incessant questions.

“Mr. Speaker,” Michael Ignatieff said, opening the fourth session of Question Period since Parliament’s extended Christmas break, “every day brings new information about the Afghan detainee scandal.”

“Sit down!” pleaded a Conservative voice.

The Liberal leader proceeded to review the latest story, this one having to do with a contingency plan the government prepared in the spring of 2007 to prepare for the possibility of untoward allegations. The Prime Minister shrugged this away as old news.

“Mr. Speaker, the issue here is getting to the bottom of this matter,” Mr. Ignatieff clarified, proceeding to invoke both the proverbial kit and the proverbial kaboodle. “Justice Iacobucci has no mandate, no subpoena powers, no tools to do the job. Allegation follows allegation, including the allegation that this government allowed rendition to occur. This is a serious matter. We have now learned that the government was more concerned with preventing political fallout, with the media management of this, than preventing torture. Justice Iacobucci is ready to serve. Why will the Prime Minister not give him the powers to hold a full public inquiry?”

The Prime Minister stood and did his best to suggest there wasn’t much to see here. “Mr. Speaker, from the opposition, unsubstantiated allegation follows unsubstantiated allegation,” he said, “including the fact which, on this particular story, the leader of the opposition was not aware of, that this had already been discussed months ago.”

That substantiality is lacking here is perhaps a point which neither side would dispute. Indeed, even the very concept of substantiation is disputed: the government side asserting, in various linguistic forms, a lack of proof and credibility, only to conclude, once credible proof was provided, that what they’d been saying all along was now credibly proven.

You—and perhaps even a learned man like Mr. Ignatieff, himself quite familiar with pretzel-tying questions of philosophy—are excused if you are left wanting by all that.

The Liberals sent up their prosecutor, Dominic LeBlanc, to attempt a clarification. “We are asking serious questions that merit serious answers,” he ventured. In their defence, the government turned to Rob Nicholson, the Justice Minister rising to remind everyone that Justice Frank Iacobucci is a fine fellow and he will surely do a fine job sorting out which documents related to this matter can be safely released.

Mr. LeBlanc tried again, laying out in relatively plain English a relatively monstrous question. “Given recent revelations,” he said, “did any minister ever receive information which indicated that Canadian officials were handing over Afghans for the specific purpose of extracting information, information that Canadian interrogators could not obtain?”

If Mr. Nicholson wanted to deny this question, he didn’t, retreating instead behind friendly lines. “Mr. Speaker, the priority of the government has never changed, and that is the safety and the security of the men and women serving in the Canadian Forces in Afghanistan. That has never changed,” he contended to cheers from the government side. “In an effort to make sure that parliamentarians have all the documents they need, the public servants are working very hard on this, and they will be getting the able assistance of Mr. Iacobucci. Again, this should have the support of the honourable member.”

Jack Layton gave it a few tries. Mr. Harper offered his current dismissal. “Mr. Speaker, without any evidence, of course the allegations, the accusations just keep going further into the stratosphere,” he said, waving his hand in the air. “The truth of the matter is, of course, that Canadian diplomats, Canadian military personnel have at all times respected Canada’s international obligations, work in a very difficult situation to affect prisoner transfer, affect the military and other developmental operations, and they deserve our support and our praise.”

Liberal backbencher Judy Foote piled up half a dozen questions on the matter of Justice Iacobucci: what would he be doing, what would he be looking for, when would he start, to whom will he report and so on. Mr. Nicholson stuck to his script.

Ujjal Dosanjh finally rose with a helpful, if somewhat accusatory, suggestion. “The Prime Minister should try a new strategy,” he said, “the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth.”

“Mr. Speaker,” lamented Mr. Nicholson, “I have the feeling that nothing will satisfy the honourable gentleman.”

“The truth!” cried various voices from the Liberal side.

Woe is the Conservative backbencher already bored of this, for he will no doubt have to endure a few more sessions like this before the spring is through.

The Stats. Afghanistan and the budget, 14 questions each. The environment, four questions. Crime and foreign investment, two questions each. Rights & Democracy, women’s shelters and the seal hunt, one question each.

Rob Nicholson, 10 answers. Stephen Harper, nine answers. Jim Flaherty and Jim Prentice, four answers each. Tony Clement, three answers. Stockwell Day, two answers. Jean-Pierre Blackburn, Gary Goodyear, Lawrence Cannon, John Baird, Diane Finley, Gail Shea and Keith Ashfield, one answer each.


 

The Commons: ‘I have the feeling that nothing will satisfy the honourable gentleman’

  1. I wonder if they realize that the constant crying wolf rarely works and only ends up being counter- productive ask the little boy who kept joking with the villagers. The oppostion parties are only succeeding in preaching to converted and are only grinding their own support down by focusing on this file and not what matters to the regular voter as poll after poll confirms.

    • Which is a good thing.

    • Except, poll after poll confirms that Canadians are concerned about this issue and how the government has been handling it and that Canadians don't believe the government's story.

      As for preaching to the converted, more like preaching to convert: the more we find out about Conservative untruths on this file, the more they have dropped in the polls. No wonder Harper felt he had to prorogue to stop the bleeding.

      • When liberals go into an election with this as their concern,i think the voters of this country will tell them quickly how much they care about one Afgan beating up another and we all know how well liberals are with telling the truth,i don't understand how a liberal can even say the word without bursting into flames.Liberals care about one thing and thats the liberal party no one else matters not,just the liberal lust for power,to hear the likes of Dosanjh speak you'd swear he spoke for all Canadians,concidering he held his seat by 2 or 3 votes he doesn't speak for many voters.The liberal party of Toronto are dead in the water when the next election comes around and they know it or they should and for any liberal hacks who want to dream any different you're in for a big let down.Canadians know what liberals are and the sooner we see the last of Iggy,and that slimy Rae,the better of this country will be.

        • ExPat – you just show your ignorance, to an enormous degree. I can't believe that Canadians have become so stupid, so ignorant, and so unaware of the rest of the world.

    • Care to share with us which particular polls confirm the regular voter doesn't care about this issue?

      • The four contests in November 2009, we call those elections. The CPC won 50% and the Liberals zero. The Bloc lost one of their seats and the NDP held theirs. How come voters are don't trust Liberals?

        • Good try, but totally irrelevant. Was this issue on the ballot?the liberals had other issues that affected their popularity. Polls dealing directly with this question clearly indicated where most Canadian's stood one this issue.

          • Excuses, apologies is all I get from opposition supporters.

            1) Your party still sucks, GOTV did not work according to the voters.

            Democracy only works when those 308 MP are held accountable by us. Why are Liberals unwilling to be held accountable with the budget in 2010 and their allegations in support of Colvin?

          • Go to an election is all i get from on suppoters.

            Try and focus on the question…did polls at the time support taking a look at Colvin's testimony or not? There's no guarantee if the libs had gone to the polls on that question alone they would have won…the polls wern't saying: " we demand a change of gov't".

          • Stop hiding behind a Poll, our democracy is too important!

            Let's go to ask Canadians at the ballot box and confirm your allegations. Why are you defending the Liberal Party, what are they covering up?

    • The opposition is doing its job. The Liberals are not doing what Harper wants them to do; which is to go after the budget. He tried to distract them – it didn't work. Good going, Ignatieff!! The Bloc is doing a good job of it too.

      • 1) Who is redacting ?

        2) The opposition and media have framed the gov't and not the non-partisan civil servants.

        3) One incident "field note" detailing a "shoe fitting" gone wrong in nearly ten years, any other evidence?

        We have one person Colvin allegations, and than friends of Liberals who repeat allegation. Everyone else is "covering up" what is common knowledge or activty right?

        • Why do you hate accountability?

          • Why do you hate the civil servants? Do you have evidence of their bias? Don't trust the testimony of the Generals and others who have refuted Colvin?

            The U.N and Nato have also not backed up the allegations by the opposition MP's.

            What do you distrust our allies, Nato, the UN?

          • It's a joke ok…at least in this instance.

    • How in the world can this plausibly end up as the ol' crying wolf scenario, with the Liberals playing the boy??
      Are you in some kind of partisan semi-blackout state where all events that reflect negatively on Harper don't penetrate the noodle?? Can you fathom the damage to Canada's international reputation if the dreaded Liberals are right and Harper is Rumsfeld North (OK, thats a bit much – hopefully) on this file? Nobody's gonna forget/forgive or even listen if we say its just some blip minority govt. and Canadians dont really support torture.

      Please explain the CONS response to and treatment of Colvin (ps – are his legal fees covered yet?), followed by the "re-cal", news of a pre-meditated response to the Country getting wind of things, etc. etc.

      Everything about this smells like a cover-up, looks like a cover-up and will hopefully soon exposed, because its even worse for us if we don't address what voter apathy and a split left has provided from 24 Sussex.

      • Careful what you wish for, John. If there's anything seriously damaging to Canada's reputation, it'll likely come back to bite the Liberal Party in the arse seeing as they're the ones that worked out the flawed prisoner transfer agreements in the first place. Using partisan wording like CONS is about as mature and honest as calling all Liberals "LIEberals". Not very mature, sir (or is that Sir?).

      • re. Rumsfeld & Harper: Bloodworth reported to Harper on a daily basis. Think about it.

      • Yes I do admire the Left who regularly turn a blind eye to torture and human right abuses in countries they have financial interests.

        The Liberals regularly referring to China as a model on a getting things done! Trudeau getting the royal treatment in Cuba during the Angola invasion. The Genocide the Liberal/Democratic/European gov't looked away Darfur?

        • Trudeau cut official ties with Cuba after Castro suckered him over Angola…your blanket assertions might seem more credible if you could be bothered to get your facts right…but you have no real interest in that, right?

    • Big difference? The boy knew there was no wolf.

      Here, the boy saw a wolf, but keeps being told there are no wolves, never have been any wolves, and our brave troops have always been at war with Eurasia.

  2. Did he really say "the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth?" From my ears it sounded like "the truth, the truth, and the whole truth."

  3. Conbots: Second verse, same as the first.

    • Did you miss the budget vote?

      • The opposition has the right (and responsibility) to hold the government to account over all manner of issues without going to the polls every time. Surely you are aware of this.

        • We have very different views on what the politicians are doing on the Hill.

          1) I suggest the opposition are playing GAMES and Colvin is the prop.
          2) I have ZERO difficulty with MP's refusing the support their PARTY, Budget, Policy, Bill.
          3) I remember how many FREE votes the Liberals allowed during their majorities.
          4).I don't believe the Civil Servants are playing games with documents.

          Did stuff happen that may be embarrassing, sure! Watch QP and listen to the questions. (Groundhog day)
          The Gov't is in the minority and the Liberals are refusing to make ANY changes in the budget. They suggest they don't support it but refuse to "fix" it and challenge the government. Zero credibility to avoid doing their job and risk facing the backlash from voters.

          I hold the opposition parties RESPONSIBLE for NOT doing their job and keeping the Gov't accountable. Rolling over sitting on your hands, hiding from voting on the budget, supply Bills is NOT appropriate.

  4. There is just so much strange behaviour by the Conservatives on this file that, whatever the truth, it leaves a smell.

    This has been a major issue now for many months with very serious allegations, court proceedings, terminated commissioners, shut down Parliamentary committees, shut down Parliament and an unprecedented Parliamentary Order that could lead to contempt charges.

    What is so difficult about revealing Iacobucci's mandate and timeline? What is so difficult about a little accountability and transparency? Why the games, still, at this point?

    • I for one will be royally pissed if the strange behaviour is just bad behaviour on their part. At this point, they owe us some strange plot that ties at least most of the lose ends together.

    • It's serious. Donald Rumsfeld is being tried on torture – the trial is going ahead. So – doesn't look good for Harper if the independent associations who are already looking into Canadian behaviour; decide he's a war criminal. Conbot crackheads can talk all they want about how they don't think it matters what the Afghans do to each other — but the rest of the world, and the courts of the world, think differently.

      Canada is no longer acting alone, not that we ever were; but now it's more serious to be found making war-criminal actions.

    • There must be something. No government would ever kick itself in the shins, over and over, for something trivial. It just defies belief.

      • Which is why I would much prefer that the stuff stay quiet until our troops are home. "Parliamentary oversight" is a cute synonym for "instant leaks to media." Sometimes some state secrets SHOULD remain secret.

        It is quite obviously too much to ask, and long past any hope of happening, but can't we just shut up about this for another year?

        • Not really. If the Taliban get a hold of a Canadian soldier, the continuing cover-up by the Conservative government regarding alleged torture would give them a defence in the eyes of those who would listen to them, as deluded as they may be. The Geneva Conventions protect our soldiers as much, if not more, than the detainees they capture.

          • If the Taliban ever capture a Canadian soldier, this atheist-leaning agnostic will pray for the soldier, and the ruler-toting pants-droppers currently peacocking their way through Parliament have nothing to do with it. The Taliban will be the cruel heartless creeps they have been for years.

            Canada's "brand" has more to do with whether the Afghan civilian population will cooperate with our soldiers, thereby enhancing mission success and soldier safety.

            But, as I said, that horse is long gone. I stand here, sad and alone, at the barn door.

          • MYL, you've always struck me as someone who is willing to look at reality. You may not like what you see, but you don't put blinders on.

            The reality is that our soldiers are still there whether you like it or not. The Afghan civilian population has no reason to believe we are any better than everybody else (and it really is everybody at this point) who has gone in there and said one thing while doing another. Maybe, just possibly, our actually looking behind this curtain, punishing anyone found deserving of punishment, and putting new procedures in place so that this doesn't happen again might make them look again. It really can't hurt, because as you yourself say, they aren't behind us now, and we've already agreed that the Taliban aren't going to be lenient to our soldiers no matter what we (or our soldiers) do.

            Why not stand at the barn door and open it a little wider for the new motorized carriage to go in, rather than staring wistfully at the plume of dust that is the horses hooves?

          • Your idealism continues to trump mine, Jenn. And I do mean that as a compliment. I suppose I am really worried about what "the truth" actually is. War sucks. There is nothing pretty about it. And since we don't all know what that truth is, and since it is possible that the truth may be incredibly damaging no matter how many pretty flowers we put around it in 2010, my sense of "realism" has me recognizing that maybe some secrets are better left as secrets.

            But the more people keep bleating about all this, the more your suggestion will become the inevitable winner.

          • and putting new procedures in place so that this doesn't happen again

            They did this in 2006 when they worried there was a chance that detainees could be treated badly. Yet nobody seems to care.

          • Sadly, that's what comes of a non-transparent half-measure.

            McCain (Foods) vs. Toyota. One looks better by getting ahead of the allegations, admitting, apologizing, detailing actions to fix the problem. The other looks heartless, selfish, flat-footed and not all that credible–at least comparatively.

          • Your analogy is not equivalent, because the new procedures were not put in place because of any direct evidence that detainees were maltreated, but as a preventative measure to ensure it did not happen in the future. There has still been no single prisoner who has been identified as a) a detainee and b) having suffered torture after being handed over to Afghan authorities. There is only speculation.

            You don't apologize for something if it has not happened.

          • How do you know? That's the whole issue, we don't know that for certain.

            My analogy referred only to non-transparent half-measures, and how they don't win public relations points.

            Hearings or inquiries or clean documents can also disprove allegations. But until we see one of those things, all we have are allegations, the knowledge that we changed our procedures, and a refusal to take any of a number of routes to look into the allegations.

          • Oh, and Geneva? I am pretty sure that the Taliban are not signatories to that document, their not being an actual state and all…

          • Since wait for the troops to come home was conceptualized by you [ for which i do have some sympathy] Perhaps you would like to speculate on why a PM in that postion, with that responsibility on his shoulders. [ which no opposition leader has] Would not privately take aside the leaders of the opp and read them form the good book. "Look guys this is the way it is. You've had your fun and games at my expense, but now i'm reading you the riot act…lives are at stake…Canadian lives." Political considerations aside. Why hasn't this happened?

          • An excellent question, for which I sadly have no answer. Tut-tutting in public that "at least WE care about our fabulous Canadian men and women in uniform" is a most pathetic response.

            The ruler-toting pants-droppers are indeed peacocking their way through BOTH sides of Parliament.

          • Yes, it makes little or no sense, any of it.

          • Actually, it makes a lot of sense, if you go with the basic assumption that this government DOES have something to hide, but the soldiers do not.

          • Yes i was generalizing too much. I had meant to point out to MYL that i didn't completely endorse a plague on all their houses pov. In fairness to him i believe he's saying we have no idea what they are trying to hide…it's likely to be a mix of embarrassment to both the parties, and to allies; some of the details should be dealt with extreme care. It is unlikely to be as black and white as it appears to us on the outside…then again, nothing this gov't does surprises me anymore.

          • what is a ruler-toting pants-dropper supposed to mean, on either side of the House?

          • The politicians are playing the adolescent game of false bravado ("all right boys, drop your trousers and I'll go get the ruler to see who wins bragging rights") while our soldiers are doing our dirty work in harm's way.

            The phrase was an attempt to put down the politicos who are strutting their, uh, stuff, using as diplomatic a vocabulary as possible. Sorry if I got euphemistically carried away.

        • Yes, because the best way to fix a problem is to cover it up.

          • Right then. Please show us the line over which state secrets get to remain state secrets. Or is there a line?

          • Hmmm….State secrets that the public servants have seen but not parliament.

          • There isn't one. Rather by definition. "State" secret, see? That means if the state, which for us is defined as our house of parliament, wants to know them, it should.

          • Isn't the state represented by the Crown, as constituted by the sitting government of the day? With the crown being wholly accountable to citizen's representatives in Parliament?

  5. 'If Mr. Nicholson wanted to deny this question, he didn't, retreating instead behind friendly lines. “Mr. Speaker, the priority of the government has never changed, and that is the safety and the security of the men and women serving in the Canadian Forces in Afghanistan"

    Just when will this gov't quit hiding behind the military?

  6. Boring . . . very very boring except when Dosanjh accuses our soldiers of being war criminals.

    All Canadians know the Liberals despise our military, almost as much as the NDP despises our soldiers, but they are usually more adept at hiding their true feelings.

    If it comes to a choice between believing our troops or believing the LPC. the troops get the nod every time.

    • It's because we believe the troops that we don't believe the CPC.
      When our troops say they've taken photographs in order to prevent torture, we believe them.
      When they say they've indicated to their superiors that torture may be happening, we believe them.

      When their superiors in government say "Nothing to see here, move along" that's where we have trouble.

      • Why do you hate the people with whom the buck stops, Thwim?

        • Oh.. probably because they deserve it.

    • Quit the lying, Fred. Donsanjh did no such thing. I grew up in the military – with my father in the Forces for 30 years, through the war and beyond, through the Suez crisis. Don't try telling me that the Liberals despise the military – Trudeau still hasn't been surpassed for spending on the military.
      Harper's lies about who "despises" the military can be seen right through. Harper is using the military as a political shield, and quite frankly, a lot of them don't like him. That's the problem with Harpo – nobody likes him, and nobody really trusts him. He's an unpopular person who went on to become a very unpopular Prime Minsiter. I'm betting he takes the "most hated" title from Mulroney.

      • Fred – you live in propoganda never never land.

        I bet each Liberal has a story about family, troops and war.

        You think I hate the troops – my grandfather was in France in WWI, my dad in WWII and an aunt that was a army nurse in WWII as well as other family members in both wars and Korea.

        You think I hate my family?

    • Fred, I understand. You love our troops. I can't blame you, since they have put their lives on the line to protect us and our way of life. What's not to love? They are valiant and brave and upstanding men and women. They deserve nothing less than our wholehearted support any way we can provide it.

      Are you nodding in vigorous agreement with me yet? Good. Now, do you watch Lost? Do you ever wonder if the smoke monster is going to turn out, in the end, to be the good guy?

    • A liar like you, Fred, should be banned by international decree from making statements about who to believe.

    • When it comes time for Canadians to stand with our troops or cowering like the gov't behind the troops, I'm certain 'with our troops' will get the nod every time.

  7. In fairness, one might interpret Nicholson's statement as one of optimism. "I have a feeling that nothing will satisfy the honourable gentleman. Or at least I hope so, because as usual that's what he's getting."

  8. No questions on the 'documents' parliament demanded?
    Parliament is supreme, now a back burner issue?

    • The chicken littles sky is falling routine in 2010 has been extended.

      • Who would a thunk it. One ph call to a retired SC judge and poof the issue of PS is all gone. Who do you think Harper is… the tooth fairy

  9. Couldn't they just subpoena Iacobucci to the Special Committee and ask these very questions?

    • I don't think that's been re/constituted just yet.

      So, they won't let MP's see the documents, but they'll let someone retired from public service look at them? Yes, I think I can understand that former-Justice Iacobucci is a trustworthy individual. But Nicholson's quote leaves me pensive:

      "…public servants are working very hard on this, and they will be getting the able assistance of Mr. Iacobucci."

      Since this is the most detailed description of what Mr. Iacobucci will be doing, why do we need someone external to the normal workings of government to guide the hands of our civil service? Does that not, in essence, denigrate the very essence that our civil service should be impartial in nature?

      • You are of course right. This Iaco gambit is BS. Parliament must enforce it s Order now-ish.

        • Nothing stopping Libs but fear.
          If Parliament is supreme, why is Iffy letting Judge Iaco run the show?
          Waiting for the terms of reference,
          then waiting for the report,
          then waiting for…..CBC to lead the way

  10. "I wonder if they realize that the constant crying wolf rarely works and only ends up being counter- productive ask the little boy who kept joking with the villagers. The oppostion parties are only succeeding in preaching to converted and are only grinding their own support down by focusing on this file and not what matters to the regular voter as poll after poll confirms."

    LOL!! Thats almost exactly identical to what a Liberal apologist said about the Gomery affair! LMAO!

  11. Now the way I see it, if and just suppose we were to give the unredacted documents to those libbie guys and they read a tiny misnomer somewhere.

    Well, within a few minutes da dosanje just couldn't contain himself and he would be phoning G&M, CBC, CTV and this guy Akin. The word would be out even if it was top secret.

    You just can't trust a liberalista to keep his mouth shut.

    That's what I think anyhow.

    • Nice to hear a non partisan take.

    • And yet strangely, the only leaks we've seen which might actually compromise national security are Maxine Bernier leaving sensitive documents in the house of a former Hell's Angel's girlfriend, and Helena Guergis revealing where in Afghanistan Stephane Dion and Michael Ignatieff were going to be when it was still a security issue.

      Project much?

      • There were state secrets let out by Bernier & Couillard? Really? What were they?

        • Just the whole damn document package. Whether any actual secrets came out or not, you can't say it wasn't a leak. It's just that by happenstance, Couillard chose not to capitalize on it.

      • Then there's NAFTA-gate – the source of leakage there being within the PMO.

    • Either Parliamentary supremacy means something or doesn't. You don't see the slightest bit concerned about war crimes. which pretty much says everything you need to know about why the majority of Canadians have voted anything but conservative three elections in a row. The new party has no ethics, no morality, and lies about everything it does, and it's supporters don't care: you are the penultimate hypocrites, a core of economic-religious fanatics. We can see exactly what kind of fascist regime we'd end up with if you people ever got a majority, the same kind of regime you were trying to establish in the 1920's and 30's when Liberals and labour stopped you the first time.

      • You're so far up your own arse you can't see that the people voted Conservatives into the best seat in the house. Now the rest of your schpeel is from a very sick in the head individual. Seek help Jerry.

        Religious fanatics… really?

        Your kind gives me goose bumps. Adios sicko.

        • Love letter from SDA??

    • oh wow we are attracting new talent!

      this is almost as lame as the prorogation excuses.

      time to recalibrate the (dis)information/talking points system.

  12. The public will notice once Conservative ministers are put under arrest for contempt of parliament. That's what this will come to. Oh yeah, then there's that part about Rahim Jaffer getting off lightly for drunk driving and possession of cocaine. The cons don't seem to have a problem with that. This government is dangerous. They appear to be playing political games with Canadian and international law. And our soldiers are dying for this bunch? How ironic.

    • Did you not notice that it was the Ontario Liberal Attorney General who stated that the Jaffer case was above board and no favouritism was shown? Or does that not fit into your world of Harper Hate?

      • You are presuming that someone didn't fluff the evidence – the police are involved here too.

        The judge – appointed by Flaherty when he was in the Harris government as was Guergis in the Harris government.

        • Fantino, Bryant , Caledonia are above reproach?

          Can you link you selective outrage for bias on their treatment?

          • ????. Oh, I know you have your little binder of notes cataloguing every thing everyone has done.

            All I'm saying is that no ones knows the details and probably never will. I'm saying everyone is presuming it's the judge or the Att General.

            Now, go back to you negativity manual.

    • Yoo hoo! Oh, kcm! I found another non-partisan take for you! Over here!

      • So i see. You can have this one.

  13. We are not occupiers. Afghanistan is a sovereign nation. So their rules, their prisons, their law. Why is the left so intent on making our troops war criminals? The detainee process was in place on the lib watch. Why isn't the press curious about that?

    • Duh – the troops are vulnerable to the policies and orders of the government. It's not the troops, it's the government.

      • Well Mr. Duh, the libs put us there in /05 I think it was. They set the ground rules long before the Conservatives kicked you out of the best seat in the house. We had to come in, re-negociate with the Affies and then clean up your mess.

        • The Liberals aren't afraid, why is Harper. They've asked for an inquiry to go back to 2001.

          When in 2005 by the way? Remember – "election" was happening.

      • Opening with 'duh' – way to go. Try to wrap your apparently loftier intellect around what the Nuremburg trials determined about troop culpability. ("I was only following orders")

  14. Get on with Contempt of parliament, everything else is a waste of time. Disown the Odium. We have a government that cannot tell the truth on any file, of roucse, they're lying on this one. Get on with it.

    • Now if you were to bring on an election, as you so sorely want, your party will be decimated. You can't possibly get anywhere with that iggy guy. Nobody but you wants a battle at the poles but we (the mighty Conservatives) are up to the challenge whenever you decide to shake things up a little.

      All your false bravado is good for a chuckle. Thanks for making my day Jerry.

      • "Nobody but you wants a battle at the poles"
        ===

        Is this another reference to that pants down / rulers type of fight? Or did you really intend to talk about a battle at the polls.

        • Oh my!, Kathryn you have shown and made me realize the error of my mis-spelling. POLLS DAMMIT POLLS. LOL. Tanks muchly. I don't think I could stand up to a ruler for more than an hour or so.

  15. Contempt of Parliament now.

  16. Despite the jolly comments of Wilson, Psiclone and all the usual suspects – everything about this issue of cover-up and the reasons for being in Afghanistan in the first place – are dragging down Canada's image and reputation in the world.
    I hold Harper, MacKay and Hillier ALL responsible for that.
    They gave the orders – our troops obeyed – even when questioning them.
    They continue to put our troops in danger in a place where the reason for being there – and staying there – was blurred from the start – 1) did Chretien agree to go to keep Dubya happy without understanding the issues 2) Did Dubya and his advisors have a clue what THEY were getting themselves into and c) Can any of our Afghanistani allies be trusted NOW and after we leave?
    The Opposition come out of all this far less covered with mud than Harper – who thought a jolly old war would keep his base happy – and Scumbag Hillier – who clearly didn't have a clue how to win hearts and minds…
    They covered up

  17. Uh oh , this is going to make QP more interesting today . Be careful what you wish for I guess .

    • wow! What a shock…libs didn't take this seriously either. According to usual Harperite ethics this cancels out their sins…let's all move forward and forget about the issue…after everyone realizes the libs started all this, and that's all that really matters. More importantly this does give Colvin a boost…let's hope the leaks keep coming.

    • Now if only the Liberals hadn't been calling for the public inquiry to go all the way back to 2002 to begin with, you'd have a point.

      If Harper and minions dare to bring this up, the instant rejoinder will be, "Why yes, that could have been a problem, why do you refuse to call a public inquiry so that we can sort this all out?"

    • Pg 203-208 of Confronting the Chaos, by Dr. Sean Maloney, talking about his happening to be in the Tactical Ops Center, on Dec 12 2005. There was an incident with a patrol to Ghorak to deal with an armed occupation of a school, escorting the USAID rep, a job that the PRT was singularly capable of doing.

      They were attacked by an IED, and…

      "The ops officer, Capt. XXXXXXX came in. A significant incident report went to NDHQ in Ottawa immediately. They were calling the PRT back. The first thing Ottawa wanted to know wasn't the state of the casualties, or what was being done about them: it was the state of the detainees! The PRT was instructed to contact the patrol, which was still in contact with the enemy, and tell it to make sure that the Geneva Convention was applied. Ottawa wanted confirmation. There were, shall we say, a number of shocked people in the TOC."

      "Simultaneously, Ottawa called the TOC and instructed the PRT not to turn the detainees over tot he Americans because, apparently, the sensitive souls in Foreign Affairs didn't want Canada to be accused of being complicit in a KAF version of Abu Gharib…. Nobody in the Ottawa bureaucracy seemed, at the time, to give a sh!t about our four casualties; the welfare of the detainees seemed to have absolute priority over the welfare of Canadians in the minds and actions of the bureaucrats, if the volume of message traffic was measured and compared."

      I wonder if this was Eileen Olexiuk's priority as Canadian soldiers bled. Note that the soldiers were still in contact with the people who planted the explosive when Ottawa was worried about the insurgents. It's so ugly that we may have to rebuild DFIAT because of their callousness.

  18. The Liberals think they have an issue that they can defeat the govt on, and make the public forget about how much money they stole from the treasury during their last tenure. I think that the Libs are being set up. That when the truth comes out and this whole issue has no legs, they will look like complete fools. As it is they look like opportunistic hypocrites, and anti-military.

    I worked for many years in the defense industry, and there were some inescapable truths. Liberals in govt meant decreased military spending, Conservatives increased military spending. Republicans in DC meant more spending, Democrats, less spending. The Clinton/Chretien years (Liberals & Democrats) almost caused the defense industry to collapse. As it was, there were tremendous consolidation and job loss.

    It's a given that Liberals are anti-military in their policies. Who destroyed morale in the 70's & 80's by giving all forces the same uniforms and ranks? The Liberals.

    • See this , Fred . Out this morning , from the CBC , no less .

    • Gee, how horrible it is that nothing at all has changed over the past 30-40 years..

      Oh wait.. it has. Do try to keep up.

      Check the actual numbers, Fred. You want to see reductions in budgeted military spending? That'd be Mulrooney and Harper. You want to see increases? That'd be Martin.

    • Another fine example of the "me first" mentality: "who cares if the right thing is done if I don't get what I want"!

  19. Disown the Odium.