On May 6th, 2013 I interviewed Yaron Brook, Executive Director of the Ayn Rand Institute on the campus of the University of Toronto. Dr. Brook was in Toronto to speak on the morality of capitalism which is the focus of his latest book Free Market Revolution – How Ayn Rand’s Ideas Can End Big Government. We discussed the success of the Ayn Rand Institute in Canada, the virtues of being selfish, and end with the disastrous, self-sacrificial foreign policies of Israel and how that country is not doing enough to ensure its security.
There has been a recent controversy surrounding the dual Canadian/French citizenship held by Federal NDP leadership hopeful, Thomas Mulcair. It is thought that to be the leader of a federal party which one day (hopefully not in my life) could propel said leader to the Prime Minister’s Office he should renounce his French citizenship. I would agree.
Historically Mr. Mulcair would not be the first federal leader to possess dual citizenship. Prime Minister John Turner had Canadian and British citizenship. Of course before 1947 there was no such thing having Canadian citizenship per se. We were all British subjects. From 1947 to the early 1980s all Canadian had dual Canadian/British citizenship. After that we achieved the singular Canadian citizenship dropping the British while also accepting the fact that Canadians can possess multiple citizenships.
Most countries, including the United States, accept the fact that a citizen can simultaneously be the citizen of another country. It’s interesting historically to know that 10 US Presidents were also British subjects. Eight of course were born into the British North American Colonies but two were British after independence; Chester Arthur, and Barack Obama. Obama was British and then Kenyan by virtue of his father who was born into Kenya which was a British colony at the time. Obama lost his Kenyan citizenship when he turned 23 as Kenya law prohibits dual citizenship for adults.
Let’s leave citizenship by descent and by birth aside and talk about oaths of allegiance or oaths of citizenship which I believe to be much more to my point. Being born here most of us did not have to take an oath declaring our allegiance to the Queen of Canada but to become a naturalized citizen or to enlist in our military, or to become a member of Parliament one must take an oath swearing loyalty to the Queen.
The Canadian Oath of Citizenship reads as follows:
“I swear (or affirm) that I will be faithful and bear true allegiance to Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, Queen o f Canada, Her Heirs and Successors, and that I will faithfully observe the laws of Canada and fulfill my duties as a Canadian citizen.”
I contend that anyone taking this oath immediately renounce any allegiance to any other nation, or leader of any other nation. It would be a blatant division of loyalty to swear allegiance to the Queen of Canada and also have, for example, an allegiance to the Republic of the Untied States of America. It would be a contradiction. It would be a lie. To not renounce citizenship in another country would make a mockery of the oath one just swore to become a Canadian citizen, or to enlist in our military, or be a Member of Parliament. It would be like having two spouses. A form of citizenship polygamy. (It has been suggested that such a renunciation would be unnecessary for citizens from other Commonwealth nations as they too are subjects of the same Sovereign. Such a distinction I will leave for the time being.)
Upon taking this oath I would suggest that anyone possessing prior citizenship in other nations publicly renounce the same and hand over any passports to that country. Not to do so would suggest that the oath was simply a formality.
Further I would suggest that any Canadian citizen, whether Canadian by birth or by blood who actively seeks the citizenship of another nation, and in doing so swears and oath to that nation, must lose his Canadian citizenship. Allegiances cannot be divided. You either swear allegiance to one country or another. You can’t have it both ways.
In 2005 our former Governor General, Michelle Jean was sworn into that office. Two days before that very swearing in which made her Commander in Chief of the Canadian Armed Forces she renounced her French citizenship. This was the right thing to do and I think she set an example for anyone wishing to actively participate in elected federal politics and our military.
Interestingly, France prohibits its citizens from participating in any foreign military or government but in Michelle Jean’s case the French Embassy in Ottawa assured her that they would make an exception in her case. And why not? To have a French citizen as Commander in Chief of the Canadian Forces would have been quite the bloodless coup.
Besides being deceitful, dual citizenship, if by choice, has been a major financial burden on Canada as many take advantage of the socialist programs Canada has to offer and become citizens of convenience. Often this scheme involves fraud as in the case of hundreds of Lebanese Canadians who received permanent resident status without having left their home country. This particular case1 centered around a man, one Ahmad, El-Akhal, who obtained2 citizenship for hundreds from the Middle East and at the same time receiving hundreds of thousand of dollars from the federal Government in the form of benefits and tax refunds.
Such scams could be eliminated by requiring Canadians applying for citizenship under our naturalization rules to report to Canadian officials on a regular basis and to provide evidence of their residency. Relinquishing their foreign passports upon taking the oath of Citizenship would also dramatically reduce these con artists who only want Canadian citizenship as a means of having a safe-haven should things turn sour in their real homelands. Much as it did in July of 2006 when Canada evacuated thousands of Canadian citizens from Lebanon costing us $85 Million. While, to be sure some of these citizens were only in Lebanon on holiday, many were permanent residents there and were using their Canadian citizenship to get away from the fighting between Hezbollah and Israel.
An oath once meant something. It meant a person’s honour was on the line should the oath be broken. It shouldn’t come as much of a surprise that today such a thing as swearing an oath has become a simple formality to be performed and then forgotten. Or worse, to be performed and laughed at as the one taking the oath knows full well that he has no intention of keeping his pledge of fealty to Queen and country.
To break an oath of allegiance to a country should be considered the same as breaking of a contract and if a naturalized citizen, a member of our military, a Member of Parliament or any other who has taken such an oath be found to be working for another country’s government or against Canada by breaking its laws, which is a part of the oath, then the proper course of action for the government would be to rescind Canadian citizenship or, in the case of non-naturalized citizens, remove them from the military or from public office.
(Originally broadcast on Just Right #234, January 26, 2012)
The Freedom Party of Canada (while it has yet to field any candidates) has put together just such a policy. It can be found online at freedomparty.ca.
In part it reads:
“the legitimate functions of the military are to respond to and prevent unwelcome invasion of Canadian territory, attacks on Canadian territory, or other acts of war against Canada that occur away from Canadian territory (for example, as against Canadians held hostage by a foreign power or terrorist group). Activities or planned activities anywhere on the globe that have as their purpose or effect an attack on the life, liberty or property of Canadians are legitimate triggers for military response where prudent diplomacy has failed. “
The key point to this policy is that it not only identifies a direct attack on our soil as a trigger for war but it also correctly identifies the need to act preemptively to prevent an attack. It also expands the sphere of action outside of our territory. This would permit, quite rightly, the Canadian military to attack other countries or groups in other countries who have violated the rights of Canadians in those countries as long as diplomatic efforts have been tried and failed.
Let’s look at some recent conflicts Canada has been involved in to see if we have followed such a policy.
It took part in the civil war of Bosnia and Herzegovina as part of the United Nations Protection Force and NATO while none of our interests where threatened.
It helped to enforce the no-fly orders of the United Nations in the civil war in Libya when no threat to Canada or Canadians was involved.
It took part in the invasion of Afghanistan in a joint response with other countries to overthrow the Taliban government which was complicit in training terrorists. I believe our involvement there was warranted to protect our nation against possible terrorist attacks. Unfortunately, the reasons the government of the day cited for entering the war was not only national protection but to ensure Canadian leadership in world affairs and to help Afghanistan rebuild. These are not valid reasons for war.
The Iraqi invasion of Kuwait in 1990 was none of our business. We had no treaty with Kuwait to defend it and yet we willing joined the United Nations in removing Iraq from their territory. Our national interests were not threatened.
At the time of the US’s decision to go into Iraq for the second time Jean Chrétien choose not to get involved. While we knew that Iraq did have weapons of mass destruction and was willing to use them (if you don’t believe this you have obviously forgotten about the Halabja massacre) and while such weapons in the hands of a dictator like Saddam Hussein were a threat to his neighbours they were no threat to us and I now believe that staying out of Iraq was the better plan. (At the time I, like many of us, was caught up in the drama and thought we should have assisted.)
What of Iran? Iran is a threat to our ally, the United States. It has an official “Death to America” day. It has called for the annihilation of America and the West. It is a theocracy which has involved itself in the training of terrorist groups like al-qaeda and Hezbollah. It is developing a nuclear weapons program and has recently threatened shipping in the Straits of Hormuz, a vital sea transportation route of vital interest to many nations including our own. If allowed to develop a nuclear weapon it is quite conceivable that it could put it aboard a ship and sail into New York Harbor and detonate it.
Some have said that Iran, like any other nation has the right to defend itself. This is not true. Iran, as a despotic theocracy which does not recognize individual rights or peaceful coexistence with its neighbours has no right to exist under its current leadership.
It is not a particular threat to Canada or Canadians as its eyes seem more fixed on Israel and the US, but if the US is attacked we should retaliate as an ally if asked. Should the US, or Israel preemptively destroy Iran’s ability to get a nuclear weapon? Yes. I believe they should. They have been threatened with what amounts to a declaration of War by the Iranian government. Iran is developing the means to carry out such a threat. They should be stopped. Should Canada join in such a preemptive action? No. We neither have the means nor is the threat to this country as real or immediate as it is to the US and Israel.
Libertarians in the US like Congressman Ron Paul, would have a dovish defense policy very different from the one of the Freedom Party which I described. Paul’s basic policy is to fight only after you have been attacked. This of course would be too late for those killed. A preemptive policy is the only rational one. Ron Paul would also remove the US military out of every other country in the world. I would grant him this: The US has spread itself thin in the world and can certainly reign in much of its forces abroad but to not have bases in areas which are of vital interest to its economy and survival is folly. Keep the bases in the middle east for a possible war with Iran; keep the military in Afghanistan because that country is far too backward to be left without being supervised by civilized adults; keep the military in South Korea and Taiwan for the possible conflicts that may happen there.
We can never forget how hostile a place the world is and how much we are all interconnected. An isolationist foreign policy is not a realistic one if a country is to maintain its interests and sovereignty. However, that being said, a jingoistic policy is also not desirable. Only with a clear idea of what it is you are protecting, who your enemy is, and what your vital national interests are can you develop a defense policy worthy of a free nation.
(Revised from a broadcast of Just Right on January 19, 2012)
Anti-Tech Fallout? Let’s Be Clear On Nuclear.
Tunisian Choice – How The Revolution Began.
A Deja Vu Election – Coalition Conundrum.
Diamond Aircraft – Layoff, Not Takeoff.
With the declaration of war upon Libya by the United Nations the face of world conflict has changed forever. War has now become a perpetual means to enforce a New World Order based on altruism. We have entered a new age of despotism and we are at the center of it.
The proper question Stephen Harper, Barack Obama and the other world leaders who have responded militarily to the UN Security Council resolution of March 17th should have asked themselves was “under what conditions should I, as a leader of a Western Democracy declare war on another sovereign nation? What could possibly provoke my nation to send troops to their deaths and spend hundreds of millions if not billions of dollars?” With the experiences of Vietnam in their history the United States answered that question in the form of the Weinberger Doctrine. US Secretary of Defense Caspar Weinberger listed the following conditions:
- The United States should not commit forces to combat unless the vital national interests of the United States or its allies are involved.
- U.S. troops should only be committed wholeheartedly and with the clear intention of winning. Otherwise, troops should not be committed.
- U.S. combat troops should be committed only with clearly defined political and military objectives and with the capacity to accomplish those objectives.
- The relationship between the objectives and the size and composition of the forces committed should be continually reassessed and adjusted if necessary.
- U.S. troops should not be committed to battle without a “reasonable assurance” of the support of U.S. public opinion and Congress.
- The commitment of U.S. troops should be considered only as a last resort
To this list I would add a seventh point; that no proper government should go to war unless the men and women who serve are volunteers.
The war in Libya does not satisfy at least five of these seven points neither for the US nor Canada:
- The governance of Libya, whether by Muammar Gaddafi or whatever government may arise from his overthrow, is not in our vital national interests. While Gaddafi has been responsible for several assassinations and terrorist attacks and has been a brutal dictator in Libya responsible for many deaths he has been kept at bay since President Reagan bombed Tripoli during Operation El Dorado Canyon in 1986.
- There is no clear intention of winning this war. The Security Council’s Resolution 1973 calls for a No-Fly Zone to be enforced. This will most likely not be enough to stop Gaddafi from protecting his strangle-hold on the Libyan population. The operation is called Odyssey Dawn. Aptly named since Homer’s Odyssey took 10 years. This could very well turn out to by the dawn of a very long odyssey for us.
- There are no clearly defined political and military objectives. Italy, France the US and Britain have already been arguing over whether or not taking out Gaddafi with an air strike is part of this mission.
- There is no reasonable assurance of the support of public opinion and (in the US) Congress. In fact Obama went to war without even seeking approval from Congress which he is bound to do by the US Constitution. There has even been talk of impeachment by some Representatives because of this breach. (This is not a precedent however, as President Reagan invaded Grenada without the prior approval of Congress). In Canada Prime Minister Harper unilaterally sent our troops, jets and committed the HMCS Charlottetown to the war without consulting Parliament. He filled in the leaders of the Opposition on March 18th by phone.
- War is a last resort when all other methods have been exhausted. This is usually a situation which would apply to a situation where our vital national interests are involved. However since this is not one of these situations there is no need to even consider the last resort of war.
This war was instigated by a call from the Arab League and to a lesser extent the African Union. Both of these organizations contain many states openly opposed to our political interests and many of the member states could even be considered hostile to us and dangerous to global peace. While the impetuous for the war has come from these states they are offering virtually no material support for the war. In fact, now that the war has begun they have even criticized the methods by which it is being carried out.
The war is at the request of the United Nations Security Council. The UN has a long track record of acting against our best interests and those of the United States. Any suggestion from them to go to war should be carefully considered for its long-term consequences.
The rationale for this war is not to keep the international peace but to protect the civilian population of Libya. This is unprecedented. The civil war in Libya must be decided by the citizens of Libya and in any civil war there are going to be casualties. For us to pick sides of the Rebels over Gaddafi may backfire if the Rebels turn out to be worse than Gaddafi. If they become led by the Mullahs and the Muslim Brotherhood we could see many more civilians murdered by the Rebels than by the Libyan Army. We could then be thought of as being complicit in their deaths.
The change in the mandate of the United Nations from keeping international peace to interfering in civil wars in order to protect civilians has come about largely due to a Canadian. Former Jean Chrétien Cabinet Minister Lloyd Axworthy while President of the United Nations Security Council in 1999 and 2000 tried to pursued the UN to alter its mandate to include intervention into sovereign states on humanitarian grounds. The UN found it too controversial so he convinced the Canadian government to fund a study on the consequences of such intervention. A commission was established called the International Commission on Intervention and State Sovereignty. One of the panel members was none other than Michael Ignatieff now Leader of the Liberal Party of Canada.
The Commission attempted to answer the following question posed by UN-Secretary General Kofi Annan:
if humanitarian intervention is, indeed, an unacceptable assault on sovereignty, how should we respond to a Rwanda, to a Srebrenica – to gross and systematic violations of human rights that affect every precept of our common humanity?
The Commission responded by saying that
…military action can be legitimate as an anticipatory measure in response to clear evidence of likely large scale killing. Without this possibility of anticipatory action, the international community would be placed in the morally untenable position of being required to wait until genocide begins, before being able to take action to stop it. (emphasis mine)
The Commission refused to define what they meant by large scale.
The United Nations has accepted the findings of the Commission and in doing so has set itself up as a World Police Force, it can now act if it suspects that harm might come to a large number of people. It has become omniscient by saying that it can now anticipate when genocide will occur as it has done with Libya but will not do for Yemen, Syria, Bahrain or any of the many countries around the world which routinely murder its citizens, China for example.
The United Nations with the aid of Lloyd Axworthy, the Jean Chrétien Government of the day, and Michael Ignatieff has given itself new authority to wage war on sovereign states in anticipation of large scale violations of human rights. For Canada, forever the lackey of the UN this is not out of character as our governments have acted on the evil philosophy of altruism since Conservative Prime Minister RB Bennett. But for the United States to fall into this trap spells the death of any hope for freedom in this world.
President Obama has appeared on the world stage at just the right time to both destroy the productive engine of the US through his trillion dollar deficits and relinquish the moral might of that world power by acquiescing to the dictates of an altruist driven United Nations agenda. On March 18th, 2011 the United States ceased to exist as we used to know it. A new power has arisen in its stead, the right hand of the United Nations clenched into a fist to intervene in civil disputes throughout the world.
The question we should be asking now is what country will be the next to be bombed by the United Nations for so-called humanitarian transgressions. The answer may be Israel.
A Reuters article from Tuesday, March 22nd reads as follows:
Investigator says evictions akin to ethnic cleansing
GENEVA — Israel’s expansion of Jewish settlements in east Jerusalem and the eviction of Palestinians from their homes is a form of ethnic cleansing, a UN investigator said on Monday.
U.S. academic Richard Falk was speaking to the UN Human Rights Council as it prepared to pass resolutions condemning Israeli behaviour. The situation “can only be described in its cumulative impact as a form of ethnic cleansing,” Falk declared.
Falk would like the Human Rights Council to ask the International Court of Justice to look at Israeli behaviour in the occupied territories.
The future of the world looks bleak. Armed with this new rationale for war – the “Responsibility to Protect”, and a weak minded, immoral leader of the United States, Barack Obama we can only expect more interventions in even more countries, causing more cries of imperialism from third world nations, inciting even more acts of terrorism.
The proper action for Canada, the US, Britain, France and Italy to have taken when asked by the Arab League to intervene in Libya should have been that they must settle their own affairs, even though it may mean the death of thousands. The only way for nations to evolve into capitalistic and democratic nations is for them to get there on their own. Most often that path is bloody. We may try to lead by example when we can (although that is getting harder with each passing day) but we cannot impose freedom and democracy upon other nations if their culture is not yet ready for it. Until they establish freedom themselves the best we can do, the best we can hope for, is to keep their current medieval ideas from polluting the rest of the world. Unfortunately, with the likes of Obama at the helm of the United States I believe such hope may now be lost.
(Broadcast on Just Right March 24, 2011 show #192. To listen to the show visit justrightmedia.org)
When I was but a lad of 8 I watched the Americans land men on the moon and I became hooked on NASA’s space program. I remember the Skylab mission and I remember recording the Apollo/Soyuz docking on my tape recorder while sitting in front of the television. When the shuttle was announced I sent away to NASA for an astronaut application kit. I still have it. Unfortunately my dreams of becoming an astronaut where dashed when I read the visual acuity requirements.
My love of space flight has continued with me all these years and I still, daily, follow the progress of the various space missions and programs around the world. Unfortunately there is very little to follow in my own country as Canada’s space program is only a fraction of the size it could or should be.
Since I have developed a political philosophy of capitalism I have had to come to terms with a proper government’s role in space research. I have come to the conclusion that a free nation should have the capacity to launch, from its own territory, satellites and payloads which advance the defense of the nation and its citizens and which can augment the proper functions of a proper government. For example the Landsat and Radarsat satellites survey and record changes in Canada’s land and ocean territory and can be properly thought of as a legitimate way to carry out the task of protecting the property of the government and of individuals. Communications satellites are legitimate in-so-far that it is an essential part of government to be able not only to communicate with its citizens but also for its military to communicate with each other. Research into the upper atmosphere enhances our ability to communicate and so again is proper. Spy satellites would be a necessary role for a space program as would the ability to launch missiles against our future enemies.
Ayn Rand, herself praised NASA and the American space program when she wrote about her experience watching in-person the launch of Apollo 11.
if we do continue down the road of a mixed economy, then let them pour all the millions and billions they can into the space program. … Let it not be (the United States) only epitaph that it died paying its enemies for its own destruction. Let some of its life-blood go to the support of achievement and the progress of science. The American flag on the moon – or on Mars, or on Jupiter – will, at least, be a worthy monument to what had once been a great country.
Canada got off to a good start in September of 1962 when it launched (on a US rocket from Vandenberg AFB in California) Alouette 1. Since the satellite was built in Canada we became the third country to have a satellite in space after the Soviet Union and the United States. Since then we have let countries like India, Japan and Communist China surpass us.
Canada’s space budget is not insignificant, $370 million, but it is paltry to what it should be in order to carry out the tasks that it should be able to do. By comparison, NASA’s budget is $17.6 billion; the European Space Agency’s budget is $5.3 billion, France’s $2.6 billion, Japan’s $2.1 billion, Germany’s 1.8 billion, Italy’s $1.5 billion and India’s $1.2 billion.
Given our GDP of $1.2 Trillion, the vast size of this country, its skilled technical labour force, its skilled scientists and its way of life to protect, Canada should expand its space budget to be at least that of its comparable G7 counterparts like Germany, France or Italy. With 1/10th the population of the United States our space budget could easily be 1/10th theirs or $1.8 billion or almost 5 times what it is at present. Consider that the Harper government wants to spend $2 billion over the next five years expanding the prison system to put teenage pot-smokers behind bars.
I understand that the Canadian Space Agency is currently considering a launch site somewhere on Cape Breton Island (probably chosen for its eastern and northern coasts which would allow for both polar and equatorial launches. Typically launch sites have uninhabited down-range areas in case anything goes wrong.) The government should pump as much money as it can into furthering this idea.
We need our own launch facilities for the same reason I argued we should have our own nuclear weapon capability a few weeks ago. We can no longer rely on the United States, Russia or the ESA to do our heavy lifting for us. Launches of a military nature must be done on our soil with our technology on our terms. To go cap-in-hand and ask that the US, France or Russia launch our satellites for us is an abrogation of our sovereignty if we could do it ourselves.
A truly Canadian space program would capture the minds of young aspiring scientists and students who would hopefully have that same awe that I had when I saw Americans walk on the moon. Again, Rand said it best when she said that
The most inspiring aspect of Apollo 11’s flight was that it made such abstractions as rationality, knowledge, science perceivable in direct, immediate experience. That it involved a landing on another celestial body was like a dramatist’s emphasis on the dimensions of reason’s power: it is not of enormous importance to most people that man lands on the moon; but that man CAN do it, is.
While I’m not suggesting that Canada has a moon-landing program I am suggesting we have a space program that will inspire Canadians to admire the possibilities of science and rationality as opposed to the current trend to admire mysticism and ignorance.
(Originally aired on Just Right show #172 October 7, 2010. To download the show visit http://www.justrightmedia.org)
The failure of Canada’s Parliament to rid us of the Long Gun Registry has underscored how tenuous is an individual’s right to self defense in this country. But what of the right and duty of a government to defend its own self, it’s sovereignty and its borders?
Canada has long ago abrogated its ability to defend itself. Near the end of the Second World War Canada had the world’s fourth largest air force and the third largest navy. Over 1.1 million Canadians served during WWII.
Today Canada’s forces are a pale ghost in comparison, 62,000 military personnel with 25,000 reservists. Our air force has about 400 aircraft, our navy… 34 ships with only three destroyers, four submarines and 12 frigates. We spend only 1.1% of our GDP on our military ranking 126th out of 174 countries. Without a shadow of a doubt Canada is unable to defend itself from some of the world’s most brutal regimes.
North Korea today has 1.1 million active military personnel with over 8 million reservists. It has an air force of about 1,800 aircraft and a navy of over 700 ships including 97 submarines.
The Theocratic Republic of Iran has over half a million active military personnel with 350,000 reservists. Iran, with the help of Russia is well on the way to developing a nuclear capability and has about 900 multiple rocket launch systems.
Russia, while relatively peaceful today compared to its recent history has 1.2 million active military personnel, 526 navy ships, almost 4,000 military aircraft.
China’s military capability is staggering, 2,255,000 active military personnel, nuclear weapons, 1,900 military aircraft, 760 naval vessels, 21 destroyers, 68 submarines (many of which are probably in our waters at this very moment).
Greece, Sweden, Mexico, Egypt, Italy, Israel, Brazil and a host of other countries have greater military strength than we do, in numbers and in armaments, and if they ever chose to do so, as silly as it obviously is, any one of them could defeat us.
There are currently nine countries with nuclear weapons, the US, Russia, the UK, France, China, India, Pakistan, North Korea and quite likely Israel.
Why don’t we feel threatened by all of this military power in the hands of countries whose histories are rife with war? Because we believe that if we were ever attacked we would be protected by the United States.
This notion has two flaws. Firstly, a free country must be able to defend itself and not rely on treaties with foreign powers, however neighbourly they may be, to defend it.
Secondly, with the decline of the United States, economically, morally and spiritually (I do not use the word spiritually in any religious sense) we can no longer rely on them to do the right thing when it comes to an invasion of Canadian territory. The US is so far in debt it’s collapse as a world superpower is almost inevitable, but of greater concern is the fading away of the character of the United States, once a nation which prided itself on its values of protecting individual rights, a productive work ethic and a clear grasp of right and wrong we have seen over the past 60 years or more a trend toward a socialist welfare state much like any other socialist welfare state like Greece, Italy, or Canada.
Especially now with the election of a statist and protectionist like Barack Obama we have a United States which just might falter if it came to defending its northern neighbour. Who knows, if Russia decided to start drilling for oil in our northern archipelago the American’s might find it more palatable or profitable to negotiate rather than retaliate on our behalf. Likewise if North Korea detonated a nuclear bomb over Vancouver as a means of showing the US that it could do the same to San Francisco would the US bomb Pyongyang for us? Probably not, and we certainly wouldn’t have the means to retaliate in any way but economic sanctions.
The 9/11 Commission reported that Al Qaida has been trying to get their hands on a nuclear weapon since the early nineteen nineties and it is suspected that private hands now control weapons grade plutonium from the collapse of the Soviet Union. If a terrorist nuke went off in Montreal would the US go to war with us or for us? Perhaps, if it suited their interests, but if Afghanistan and Iraq are any indications the effect would be half-hearted and insufficient.
There are perhaps other scenarios where Canada could be attacked and our cousins to the south would find a reason not to commit to a war over it. At best there would be some debate around the United Nations and some economic sanctions against the aggressor but an all out war? Don’t kid yourself.
For these reasons, an insufficient conventional military and a neighbour we can no longer rely on to defend us, Canada should withdraw from the nuclear non-proliferation treaty and develop its own nuclear option.
The world is not a safe place, it never has been and it’s getting even more dangerous with forces like Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, Osama bin Laden and Kim Jong-Il threatening to destroy us and our way of life. As a nuclear power, unable to defend itself with conventional forces, our enemies, and yes we have enemies, would certainly think seriously before attacking us. Only yesterday, Ahmadinejad (today’s equivalent of Hitler) called on the US and Israel to disarm and predicted the end of capitalism. The usual response from Obama is not a defense of capitalism, because on this point he and Ahmadinejad are in full agreement, but that the US has no quarrel with Iranian people themselves, only with its Islamist government.
This Neville Chamberlain like appeasement, this “peace in our time” rhetoric reveals the weak character of a weak minded-leader. Of course our quarrel is with the Iranian people! Ahmadinejad is a very popular leader with who has the support of the Iranian masses! It is the Iranians we should focus our attention on; the leaders, the people, their warped sense of life and their threats to wipe Israel off the map and destroy capitalism. Yes there are Iranians who would like Ahmadinejad gone and a return to a modern secular state as Iran used to be, and I wish these people well, but on the hole, there are millions of Iranians who would dance in the streets at the site of another terrorist attack on New York as they did in 2001.
Consider, if the allied forces of World War II could have taken out Hitler and his cabinet and left the millions of NAZIS intact does Obama really think that there would not have been anyone just as vile as Hitler to take his place? National Socialism was supported by the masses of Germany and the only way such an evil philosophy could have been stopped was the way it finally was… the destruction not only of it leaders, but its military, its infrastructure and its people. National Socialism was crushed, just as Imperialism in Japan was totally and swiftly crushed. The Second World War lasted 6 years while the recent Iraq war lasted 7 years and the Afghanistan war is in its tenth year. The United States, Canada and our allies have either forgotten how to conduct a war or they want to conduct a war wearing kid gloves. They don’t want to spend the money and can’t take the risk of killing civilians, or worse offending them, so the war drags on for years while a swift military campaign in the style of WWII would have finished Iraq and Afghanistan in short order.
The worst thing the US led coalition did with Iraq and Afghanistan was to allow them to elect new governments while the war was not yet over. The people they elected are of the same mind as the dictators who were overthrown. This rush to democracy is now typical of any American-led war. Their notion of bringing medieval nations into the civilized world is to show them how to elect their dictators.
With the failures of Iraq and the inevitable failure of Afghanistan we can no longer rely on the US to protect this country should we run into trouble. We have to greatly expand our military capability for that inevitable day when they will become necessary and we have to become a nuclear nation preferably in the short term to give us time to create the conventional forces necessary to protect this country.
Faced with the fact that this country can’t even defend itself it seems almost petty to talk about the long gun registry but the two go hand in hand. The liberal and socialist attempts to disarm Canada’s law abiding citizens first with a long-gun registry followed soon by a long-gun confiscation is justification for Canadians to shake their heads, read a little history, pay attention to the threats all around us and arm ourselves, not only as individuals but as a nation.
I don’t consider this jingoistic rhetoric or right-wing saber rattling. This is a wake-up call to get this country back on track. Every free nation, to the extent that it values individual rights, (and there are fewer of these countries remaining) must have the means and the will to use whatever is necessary, including nuclear weapons, to defend itself. Unfortunately, there can never be a period of time when we shouldn’t be prepared to go to war at a moment’s notice.
For all its faults we have it good here. We have had it so good for so long we have forgotten just how quickly it can all be lost if we aren’t prepared.
(Originally broadcast on Just Right on CHRW 94.9 FM on September 23, 2010. For an audio archive of the show visit http://www.justrightmedia.org)
Every November 11th we honour the war dead by remembering their courage, their suffering, and the risking of their lives for something of greater value. Some might say sacrifice but that word is often used erroneously.
Why would a young man want to carry a rifle, be shipped overseas to face great hardship and possible death? Why did 65,000 Canadians and 1,200 Newfoundlanders die fighting in WWI? Why did over 40,000 Canadians and Newfoundlanders die fighting in WWII?
Today we like to say they fought and died for our freedom. If that is so then I would have to say that they died in vain. Canada before the first two great wars and even the Korean War was in many respects a much freer country than the Canada of today.
Many of us define Canada today in terms a 20 year old Canadian of 1917 or a Canadian of 1939 would not understand and if they did understand it I think they probably would be shocked. Today you’ll hear the CBC sycophants say Canada is a country defined by its multiculturalism, its social programs, it universal health care, official bilingualism, even perhaps such trivial things like the CBC.
We have to remember that before the Second World War none of our current social programs existed.
Unemployment Insurance was introduced in 1940, Old Age Security – 1952, Canada Pension Plan – 1966, OHIP – 1972, Childcare Benefit – 2007. It stands to reason that none of these existed before the First World War. In fact, before the First World War we didn’t even have an income tax (or the CBC). So that begs the question; why did these soldiers fight if it wasn’t for what many Canadians now define as Canadian?
If it was for freedom then it was for the right to live in a country where the government did NOT take over half of what you earn. If it was for freedom then it was for the right to be able to speak out against religious and ideological beliefs that threaten world peace (something that will put you before a Kangaroo Court called a Human Rights Tribunal today). If they fought for freedom it was for the right to choose any doctor you wish without waiting in a queue (something only our pets can take for granted today). If they died for freedom then it was the freedom to work and to save for your retirement without having to rely on government handouts in your old age. If they fought for freedom then it was for the right to live in a safe community where criminals were dealt with quickly and appropriately. If our veterans fought for freedom then they lost the war.
That is, if they fought for freedom.
Before the two world wars Canada’s foreign policies were decided by England. It seemed only natural at the time that when England chose to go to war that Canada only followed like a dutiful child. Most of the veterans fought because of a sense of patriotism. Not necessarily the best thing to fight for since the other side had millions of patriots too.
We should remember also that there was great opposition to the war from the French speaking Canadians. And don’t forget the fact that we had to conscript 125,000 Canadians to fight overseas, 25,000 of these being sent to the front. So when we remember the dead of the Great War we must never forget we sent thousands to die who did not want to fight for England.
We must also remember that Canadians entered the 2nd World War unaware of the atrocities that Hitler was about to perform on millions of Jews. In fact, Canada had its own anti-Semites in government. And don’t forget our Japanese internment camps. And of course we must remember that we still needed to enslave over 12,000 conscripted to fight.
I would like to think that the tens of thousands who died in Europe for Canada did so, not as a sacrifice, but because they knew they might lose their lives for something of greater value; a free and peaceful country. I would like to think that. The fact is we really don’t know why so many died since we obviously haven’t learned much of a lesson from the wars and seem to continue down the path away from the freedom we think they fought for.
If we consider why Canadians are fighting in Afghanistan I think we have to look at things very much differently. We have a highly educated volunteer Armed Forces. The way it should be. For the most part today’s soldiers are career professionals and are fighting not out of blind patriotism but out of a clear understanding of which country is right and which country is wrong. Afghanistan was, when we first invaded, explicitly aiding in the training of terrorists and harboring Osama bin Laden. That country under the Taliban had no right to exist and we were quite right to overthrow them. It was definitely in our best interests to do so. What Canada is still doing there is a topic for another day.
Not many know of a link between the two World Wars and the H1N1 virus.
In WWI over 15 million died from the war. While at the same time between 50 and 100 million died around the world from the Spanish Flu which was an H1N1 strain of influenza A. In fact 1 million of Germany’s soldiers had come down with the flu and had to retreat back to Germany effectively ending the war. Hindenburg, not wanting to admit that his soldiers were unfit for soldiering blamed his loss on the Jews, socialist and Bolsheviks. He created what was called at the time the “Stab in the Back Legend” claiming that the unpatriotic sabotage of the Jews led to the loss of the war. This legend was widely believed in Germany and picked up by Adolph Hitler. The rest, as they say, is history.
(Originally broadcast on Just Right November 12th 2009 (Show #128). To download the show visit http://www.justrightmedia.org)