Tuesday, May 03, 2005

Canadian Liberation of Holland - 60 Years Ago

Canadians, Dutch honour war dead

CANADIAN PRESS

GROESBEEK, Netherlands — The last time John McConachie saw his big brother Bill, he had driven his tank right to the doors of the Dutch hospital where he lay recovering from a leg wound suffered in the early days of the campaign to liberate the Netherlands.

Four months later, on Feb. 26, 1945, Bill McConachie and his entire tank crew were killed by German fire near the town of Nijmegen.

Today, John McConachie returned to Holland for the first time in 60 years and sat just metres away from his brother’s grave during an emotional memorial ceremony at the Canadian War Cemetery in the small village of Groesbeek.

“It’s very touching,” McConachie, 83, of Montreal, said following the sombre event held on a damp, overcast day to mark the 60th anniversary of the liberation of the Netherlands.

“I didn’t think it would be quite as emotional to see the grave as it was.”

McConachie, a veteran representing the Royal Montreal Regiment, still holds fond memories of the brother he described as a rebel, whose swagger he could distinguish from afar because he insisted on carrying two .45-calibre weapons for protection instead of the single gun most soldiers wore.

“He was like Billy the Kid,” recalled McConachie.

Today’s ceremony, which drew about 1,500 veterans and about 6,500 others, mainly grateful Dutch citizens, was held to honour the 2,338 Canadians buried there.

It was one of the biggest events in a week of activities planned to honour the survivors and remember the more than 7,600 Canadians killed in the nine-month campaign to free Holland from its Nazi occupiers.

With many veterans on the trip now in their mid-to-late 80s, Veterans Affairs expects this to be the last large-scale pilgrimage it organizes.

Monday, May 02, 2005

Canada's Pathetic African Policy - Take a Pill, Africa!

May 2, 2005.
Thomas Walkom
Africa still awaits Canadian drugs - not a single pill exported, doctors say

Legislation was passed year ago

DENNIS BUECKERT
CANADIAN PRESS

OTTAWA—Almost a year after Canada won global praise for passing legislation to provide cheap drugs for poor countries, the law hasn't resulted in a single pill being exported.

Government officials say the Jean Chrétien Pledge to Africa Act has been stalled by technicalities. Critics say it is fatally flawed and will never have any real impact.

"We're still in a waiting game," said Tony Parmar of Doctors Without Borders, which had hoped the bill would be a lifeline for countries devastated by AIDS, malaria and other treatable diseases.

"The conclusion we can draw is that one year later, not a single drug has been exported," Parmar said. "We're hopeful we can do that in the future but there's no guarantees at this point. To be honest, there hasn't been a whole lot of interest for the generic drug makers to use this legislation."

Read the whole thing [here].

This reminds me in a painful, shameful way of the breathless manner in which PM Dithers announced Canada would help the tsunamai victims. Two weeks later our "emergency team" were still packing their underwear while the US and Aussie's were on the ground saving lives.

Saturday, April 30, 2005

Canadian Utopia or Opiumtopia?

For all those who wish they lived in Canada's "open and free climate" imagine your tax dollars literally going up in smoke like this.

Alarming News has this story about free crack pipes being given out in Ottawa to prevent users getting infections. Read it [here].

Canadian and German Spy Justice vs. Islam

Confidential German sub plans offered to covert Mountie in coffee shop

JIM BRONSKILL Sat Apr 30, 9:30 AM ET

(CP) - The military confidences of a European country were peddled to an enigmatic man posing as a Chinese agent in a most unlikely setting: a tranquil southern Ontario coffee shop.

An RCMP officer assuming the role of a Chinese spy nabbed a Toronto-area woman when she agreed to sell him pages from a German submarine manual, The Canadian Press has learned.

The remarkable meeting in the neighbourhood cafe was part of an elaborate sting operation that turned Michaela Gile's life upside down and led to her eventual conviction in Germany for attempted treason.

It also shattered any faith Gile and her husband had in the Canadian justice system.

The eye-opening case also sheds some rare light on the undercover activities of the RCMP's secretive national security division.

The international espionage saga began in 2003 when Gile, a German-born translator, had a payment dispute about her work on a confidential manual for the weapons system of the U-212A submarine, equipped with six torpedo tubes.

Designed in Germany, the advanced vessel is renowned for a quiet propulsion system powered by hydrogen fuel cells that helps it elude enemy subs.

--- Ed - Shattered her husband's faith in the justice system? Wah? ---

... But the caller was persistent, saying he was just around the corner. He told her to look for an Asian man in a suit at a nearby coffee shop.

Gile agreed.

Incredibly, the agent who met her was sporting the red, yellow and blue of the RCMP on both his tie clip and wristwatch, Gile recalls. She would recognize them as the Mountie colours only much later, after she had been arrested, when she spotted them on a sign.

At one point, the undercover officer, apparently noticing the gaffe, tugged his sleeve over his watch. ..

--- Ed - can you imagine more inept security work than wearing the RCMP colours? ---

...Gile spent a difficult Sunday night behind bars. At a bail hearing the next day Crown lawyer Ruthanne Bowker confirmed that an undercover Mountie had met her at the coffee house.

Meanwhile once back in Germany...

...Gile spent weeks in a small cell with three other women at a prison in the western city of Koblenz... Gile received a suspended sentence of one year, meaning she would not have to serve any more jail time...

Read the whole thing [here].

And Now for Something Completely Different:

Yemen: Young mother faces execution for crime committed when 16

A 21-year-old woman, the mother of a toddler, reportedly faces execution on Monday (2 May) in Yemen, despite being only 16 when the death sentence was passed, said Amnesty International today. The Yemeni Penal Code expressly prohibits the execution of anyone convicted of crimes committed when they were under 18. She had reportedly been tortured to force her to confess, and has since maintained her innocence.

Amina Ali Abduladif only escaped the firing squad in 2002 because the executioners noticed she was pregnant, according to reports from her lawyer.

She was reportedly raped by one of the guards at al-Mahaweet prison. As a result she gave birth to a child, who is with her in Sana'a Women Central prison and is now very nearly two years old.

Amnesty International UK Director Kate Allen said:

"We have only four days to stop the execution of Amina. I hope the people and government of the UK will join Amnesty in its campaign to prevent this unnecessary death.

"Amina was only sixteen when her husband was killed. She maintains that she is innocent and that her confession was tortured out of her.

If you want to fight with one hand time behind your back, the outcome is predictable.

Thursday, April 28, 2005

Happy, Birthday Sadaam!

Yes, its the big guy's birthday! I wonder what he's got planned? Perhaps a stretch in the yard. ..

Wednesday, April 27, 2005

Moussaoui - Aint so Tough Now, Huh?

Moussaoui Pleads Guilty in Terror Plot

By Jerry Markon, Washington Post Staff Writer

Zacarias Moussaoui pleaded guilty yesterday to taking part in a broad al Qaeda conspiracy that resulted in the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks, saying Osama bin Laden personally instructed him to fly an airplane into the White House...

The balding, bearded Moussaoui, 36, dressed in a green Alexandria jail jumpsuit, blasted his attorneys, calling one of them a "Judas," and said he expects "no leniency from the American" when his case comes to the sentencing phase. As he was being led from the courtroom by a team of security officers, he shouted in a thick accent, "Lord! God curse America!"

(The brave warrior of Allah, right? Read on Ed.)



Moussaoui, while indicating that he had initially asked for a sentence of death, yesterday vowed to fight to save his life.

"I have significantly changed my position following the advice I receive from you," he told Brinkema. "I will not apply for death. . . . No, Moussaoui will fight every inch against the death penalty."

Ah, not so quick to face up now that the gavel is coming down, eh? There is further talk of taking him to Germany to testify against a Moroccan who was released due to a lack of evidence. Clearing your throat to start singing like a bird...

Full story [here].

Mark Steyn, the Gomery Inquiry and more

Banned in Canada

Monday, 2 May 2005
Mark Steyn

A decade or so back, I was in London and switched on the radio and the top story on the BBC News that morning ran as follows: “A Conservative MP has been found dead in . . . unusual circumstances.”

That’s annoying enough--like those people who rush up to you and say, “You’ll never believe what I just heard . . . no, wait, I’m not supposed to tell you, forget I mentioned it.” But worse was to come. The news bulletin ended and the anchor on the morning show came on and he had with him the chairman of the Tory party, Norman Fowler, and an equivalent panjandrum from Labour, and they proceeded to discuss for 15 minutes the unusual death of the aforementioned MP without giving us a hint as to the aforementioned unusual circumstances. “These are the kind of, ah, circumstances that could occur to, ah, any member in any party,” said Sir Norman, anxious to make plain that whatever the unusual circumstances were the unusualness of them was strictly non-partisan.

I had a headache by the time the segment ended. Here were a bigshot BBC host plus two political heavyweights having a public conversation in which they all knew what they were talking about but the listening millions were entirely in the dark and the conversation was being conducted in a code explicitly intended to keep them in the dark.

Well, the fate of poor Stephen Milligan, MP didn’t stay veiled in obfuscatory unusualness for long. He had been found dead on his kitchen table naked except for a pair of lady’s stockings on his legs and a third one tied round his arm, a satsuma and amphetamines in his mouth, and on his stomach traces of what the FBI crime lab during their analysis of Monica’s black dress took to calling genetic material. The honourable member had died of “auto-erotic asphyxiation,” and that’s too good a story for the Fleet Street tabs to go along with any of this genteel “unusual circumstances” hooey. Mr. Milligan’s notoriety has faded now, but I’ve never forgotten that initial BBC tiptoe round his two lips and the memorable contents within. The political and media class carrying on a private conversation based on their privileged access to facts the citizenry were unaware of seemed to sum up everything that’s wrong with public discourse in too many democratic societies.

You may have noticed something similar is going on with the rulers of our own diseased Dominion right now. I don’t mean that the Liberal Party of Canada has been found dead of auto-erotic asphyxiation with a couple of pharmacologically enhanced Timbits in its mouth and Sheila Copps’ fishnets on its limbs, though it may yet come to that. What I mean is that everybody’s talking about something without really talking about it at all. During the Gomery commission’s investigation into the Liberals’ waste of even more of our money than usual, someone is alleged to have allegedly alleged something. Allegedly. And I can’t put it any plainer than that--or not without the RCMP kicking the door down.

Read the rest to get to the best part. The Western Standard newspaper - very interested. La Presse in Quebec - owned by Paul Demerais, the virtual Godfather of the Liberal Behemoth.

Read it [here]

Sunday, April 24, 2005

China under the radar

Japan PM Apologizes for WWII Aggression

By AUDRA ANG, Associated Press Writer

Friday, April 22, 2005

(04-22) 09:56 PDT JAKARTA, Indonesia (AP) --

Japan's prime minister apologized Friday for his country's World War II aggression in Asia in a bid to defuse tensions with regional rival China, but a Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman said the apology needed to be backed up with action after Japanese lawmakers made a controversial visit to a war shrine.

Just hours before Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi apologized, a Cabinet minister and more than 80 Japanese lawmakers visited a Tokyo shrine to Japan's war dead. China's Foreign Ministry expressed "strong dissatisfaction over the negative actions of some Japanese politicians" in visiting the Yasukuni Shrine, which also honor's Japan's executed war criminals.

So why is this a story and why do I even care? Because this is a highly orchestrated campaign by China to take pressure off themselves and put pressure on regional rival Japan. And why is that important? Because China is poised to become the premiere world power and eclipse the United States. They deal with Sudan for oil, Venezeula for oil, do a huge amount of trade with the US and Canada. Why is this bad? Because they are a totalitarian state and the world is asleep in not seeing that the two biggest powers are on a collision course. The day will come, and it will be a surprise.

Perspective

I'm shocked to have read this at Yahoo news today. A succinct and historically correct account of Hitler's final days and how WW2 ended. The only reason I'm posting about the subject is that it is important to put things in perspective and context. To have freed a country of 25 million people with 1500 casualties is astounding and unprecedented in world history and yet the MSM sees the war in Iraq as a catastrophe. The Red Army lost 78,000 dead in the final assault on Berlin over the course of a week. Freedom ain't free.

Full story [here].

Tuesday, April 19, 2005

The Perfidious French

France's role in Lebanon
By GEORGE SASSINEUNITED PRESS INTERNATIONAL
Paris, France, Apr. 18 (UPI) -- France, Lebanon's former patron, is trying to avoid internationalizing the Lebanese crisis, which erupted following the Feb. 14 assassination of former prime minister Rafik Hariri.
France is opposed to an international conference on Lebanon, to sending international forces to its former mandate or dispatching foreign observers to oversee the general elections scheduled for May. The move, it worries, would push Lebanon out of France's political orbit.
French President Jacques Chirac, Hariri's close friend and ally, convinced U.S. President George W. Bush last June to co-sponsor U.N. Security Council Resolution 1559, aimed at forcing Syrian military and intelligence personnel out of Lebanon. He was also the first to call for an international investigation into Hariri's assassination.
Resolution 1559 called for the withdrawal of foreign forces from Lebanon but did not name Syria, which has forces in the country; the dismantling of foreign and local militias, in reference to Hezbollah and armed Palestinian factions; for expanding the state's authority over all Lebanese territory; and for deploying the Lebanese army along the border with Israel. The resolution divided the Lebanese political world.


Read the story [here].

Okay. So the hopes and dreams of freedom and democracy for millions of Lebanese people should be shelved to ensure that France maintains its influence in the Middle East. Lets just be clear about this. While there is a realpolitik aspect that can't be discounted, since France lost their other best friend when Sadaam was pulled out of a hole in the ground, lets call a spade a spade. The French are heartless cowards.