Posts Tagged ‘cenotaph’
- Afghanistan (1) “Upon arriving in Mazar-e-Sharif, we met the U.S. Army team that we would be replacing. It didn’t take much time for a U.S. Army sergeant to tell me, “I hope you have thick skin because we haven’t had a female adviser down at Camp Shaheen, so I don’t know how they will act toward you.” My first reaction was to shake my head, throw my hands up and say, “Really? Aren’t we past this – females in the military — by now!” In Canada perhaps we are, but welcome to Afghanistan ….”
- Afghanistan (2) Another interpreter told, “no, thanks” to moving here.
- Afghanistan (3) Canadian Press straightens out their lead sentence in this story on the Kandahar Air Field cenotaph being dismantled and brought back to Canada – way to respond to a suggestion, CP!
- Afghanistan (4) Minister of Defence plus others come back from Afghanistan (via CF Info-Machine).
- “Defence Minister Peter MacKay says he plans to ask his Israeli counterpart Ehud Barak about reports that Israel’s leaders have discussed plans to attack Iran’s nuclear sites. Barak, who along with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has taken a tough line on Iran, is due to visit Canada next week. Speaking to reporters in Kandahar after a day trip to Kabul, MacKay said Saturday that the “dynamics have changed and will continue to change” as tensions escalate between nuclear-armed Israel and Iran ….”
- DND allowed to keep some money it didn’t spend (but don’t get used to it). “…. up to $11 billion in approved funding remained in public coffers. In 2009, the government approved $6.3 billion, $9.4 billion in 2010 and $11.2 billion in 2011. When pressed on why the funding was never spent, Flaherty said rebuilding the Canadian Forces was a factor. “We have a very large program to rebuild the Canadian Armed Forces and found repeatedly that they cannot get as much done in a given year as they perhaps thought they were going to,” said Flaherty, who was in Honolulu, Hawaii for the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation Summit. “At the end of the year, we look at what is happening within the departments. We let them carry over some cash from year to year, but it’s limited because we don’t want to create that kind of expectation that if you don’t use the money that is allocated to it, you get to use it the next year,” he added ….”
- Federal politicians join the CFL in honouring vets – an MP in Edmonton and a Senator in Montreal.
- Again with the “end of the beginning” messaging on the Victoria-class subs (previous occurances here and here)! “Canada’s navy is promising its Victoria-class submarines will by fully operational by 2013 — nearly 15 years after the boats were purchased from the United Kingdom. Speaking with W5′s Lloyd Robertson on Oct. 28, navy commander Vice Admiral Paul Maddison said he understands Canadians’ frustration with the submarine program. “I understand why they would feel impatient. I ask all Canadians for patience. We are at the end of a long beginning,” Maddison said ….”
- “Lockheed Martin, builder of the controversial F-35 stealth fighter, is lining up to make a bid on the Harper government’s planned purchase of fixed-wing search-and-rescue (FWSAR) planes — an idea that’s apparently being warmly received in deficit-minded Ottawa. The giant U.S. manufacturer, the world’s largest defence contractor, is preparing a bid to build more Hercules transports for the air force, say several defence and industry sources. A spokesman confirmed the interest, but was coy on the details. “We look forward to seeing the detailed statement of requirements and look forward to offering a cost-effective, affordable solution,” Peter Simmons, a spokesman for Lockheed Martin, told The Canadian Press ….” More on the FWSAR program here.
- Canadian Troubles in Egypt (1) “A Montreal man teaching in Egypt has died of his wounds after being caught in the crossfire of a gun battle in the country’s south, local media reports said Saturday. The Egyptian news service Bikya Masr said Jean-Francois Pelland lived in Cairo, where he was a teacher and football coach. The news service said Pelland was touring southern Egypt with a friend when members of a feuding family opened fire on his car on Wednesday. The service said armed men fired when the car refused to stop, thinking that those inside the vehicle were from a rival tribe ….” More here and here.
- Canadian Troubles in Egypt (2) “One person was killed and at least 11 wounded on Sunday in clashes between the army and protesters sparked by concerns about pollution from a fertilizer plant in northern Egypt, security officials said. Egypt’s ruling military council later closed down the plant, jointly owned by state-owned Misr Oil Processing Company (Mopco) and Canada’s Agrium, state media reported, after days of demonstrations. Residents first took to the streets on Tuesday demanding the relocation of the nitrogen plant in the city of Damietta. Protesters closed off the city’s port on the Mediterranean coast and roads next to it on Sunday, state news agency MENA said ….”
Written by milnewsca
14 November 11 at 7:45
Tagged with Afghanistan, Agrium, Benjamin Netanyahu, Bikya Masr, cenotaph, Damietta, Egypt, Ehud Barak, F-35, Fixed Wing Search and Rescue, FWSAR, interpreters to Canada, Iran, Iranian nuclear sites, Jean-Francois Pelland, Jim Flaherty, Kandahar, Lockheed Martin, Mazar-e-Sharif, MENA, Misr Oil Processing Company, Mopco, Paul Maddison, Peter MacKay, Peter Simmons, Victoria class submarines
- Pile On the Defence Minister About The Planes/Choppers! (1a) PM Stephen Harper continues to back his man (the Minister, anyway). “…. Mr. Harper, however, said all Mr. MacKay’s flights were legitimate. “When he has used them, they’ve been for important government business,” the Prime Minister told the Commons. He invoked fallen soldiers in defending his minister, saying half of Mr. MacKay’s flights were to attend repatriation ceremonies where the remains of dead troopers were returned to Canada. “Half of those flights are for repatriation ceremonies so that he can meet the families of those who have lost their loved ones in the service of this country. He goes there to show that we understand their sacrifice, we share their pain and we care about them,” the Prime Minister said ….” And this was so different from the CDS’s work before the much-maligned, and un-PM-supported, trip to rejoin his family how? More from the guys who started the pile on here.
- Pile On the Defence Minister About The Planes/Choppers! (1b) Here’s Hansard’s version of what the PM said in the House of Commons yesterday: “…. the Minister of National Defence has participated in some 55 repatriation ceremonies for over 80 lost Canadian service personnel …. This minister uses government aircraft 70% less than his predecessors. Half the time, he does so to attend repatriation ceremonies for soldiers who gave their lives for our country. That is why we have such great respect for the Minister of National Defence on this side of the House of Commons …. When this minister pays his respects to the families of our fallen soldiers I expect the official opposition to support us and the minister by showing respect for these families.”
- On the CDS and plane trips. “…. Tradition suggests Gen. Natynczyk is heading into the final months of his term as Chief of the Defence Staff. He led our Canadian Forces through the successful completion of our combat mission in Afghanistan — one that elevated Canada’s military reputation around the world. We should allow him to bask in the afterglow that follows a job well done.”
- Afghanistan (1) Columnist Joe O’Connor seems underwhelmed at how Canada handled fast-tracking Afghan translators to move to Canada. “…. Interpreters, or ’terps, in the dusty lingo of life in the Afghan war theatre, were vital to our mission as translators, cultural guides — and as Afghans — who understood what Afghanistan was all about. One imagines that these Afghans thought they knew what Canada was all about after Mr. Kenney launched the program: a land of opportunity, of safety — and a just reward for a job well done. It is a pity that isn’t true.” Not exactly – it was only true for 1 out of 3 who applied (glass half empty version), or it was true for more than 500 terps (glass half full version).
- Afghanistan (2) NDP MP Anne-Marie Day congratulates ROTO 10 in the House of Commons: “I am deeply honoured today to draw attention to the difficult commitment undertaken by our Canadian troops on Afghan soil during Rotation 10 of Joint Task Force Afghanistan, which took place from October 2010 to July 2011. We ought to commend and applaud the sacrifices and efforts made during this mission. In 2001, when Canada became involved in this mission, Canadians already suspected that our involvement would be long and arduous. In total, 10 years went by before we considered our work to be done. Tomorrow there will be a ceremony at Valcartier to mark our soldiers’ return. They lived up to the Canadian promise. We can all celebrate their work, be proud of it and honoured by it as well.”
- Afghanistan (3) U.S. blogger Michael Yon continues to make no friends – this time, assessing Canada’s impact in Kandahar. “…. the history of the Canadian troops is softly being rewritten as successful in Afghanistan. Reality differs. The Canadians troops have an excellent reputation and they served with distinction, but after nearly being swallowed whole, they were ordered to abandon their battlespace. There were many causes. The Canadian combat forces could have prevailed, but Ottawa is weak. The prime cause for the Canadian defeat was that tough men in mud homes without electricity defeated comfortable politicians in Ottawa, who seem to think that manufactured history will make them victorious ….”
- Afghanistan (4) Detainee probe by Military Police Complaints Commission plods on, slowly. “The Federal Court has dismissed complaints from military police officers over hearings conducted by the Military Police Complaints Commission into issues relating to the treatment of Afghan detainees. Eight current and former officers with the Canadian military police had argued they were being denied the right to a fair hearing with regard to whether they were at fault in their transfer of detainees to Afghan authorities or for not investigating how they were treated once transferred, given accounts about abuse of such prisoners at the hands of Afghan authorities ….” Federal Court decision here, decision summary here and more media coverage here and here.
- Paeta Derek Hess-Von Kruedener, 1962-2006, R.I.P. Remembering, five years later. “…. On 25 July 2011, the fifth anniversary of the attack on Patrol Base KHIAM, the fourth annual memorial service was held in El Khiam, led this year by New Zealand Army Lieutenant-Colonel Helen Cooper, the current chief of Observer Group Lebanon (OGL) ….”
- On how much veteran families get for funerals: “Mr. Sean Casey (Charlottetown, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, a Canadian Forces member receives $13,000 for funeral costs. A veteran receives $3,600. Nineteen months ago we raised this issue. The answer we received was that it was under review. Last year we asked the minister again to fix this problem. Even though his own officials raised it with him, he told a Senate hearing that it was not the time to talk about the matter. Yesterday we received another non-answer. Our veterans have done their job. They served and defended Canada. Why will the minister not do his and fix the situation now? Hon. Steven Blaney (Minister of Veterans Affairs, CPC): Mr. Speaker, I am glad to say that on this side of the House we not only speak for veterans, but we act for veterans. As I told the member yesterday, this program is managed by the Last Post Fund. It is doing an outstanding job. We fund the Last Post Fund. We are making sure that every military member who is killed or injured during service, whatever his or her rank, is well-served and will be treated with respect until the last moment of his or her life.”
- What’s Canada Buying? Remember the “rent a UAV” bid request? A new Statement of Work and Evaluation Criteria document is out (via Army.ca).
- What’s the U.S. Buying? A Canadian company is getting more work from additions to this big job: “Canadian Commercial Corp., General Dynamics Land Systems – Canada, Ontario, Canada, is being awarded an $87,335,007 firm-fixed-priced modification under previously awarded contract (M67854-07-D-5028) for procurement of 425 of the following engineering change proposal upgrades: upgraded transfer case kit; hood/bonnet assembly kit; exhaust system kit; central tire inflation system upgrade kit; skydex flooring material kit; electrical harness kit; route clearance digirack kit; remote weapon station joystick kit; front door assist kit; wheel and tire upgrade kit; and independent suspension axel system kit. Work will be performed in Benoni, South Africa (70 percent); Trenton, N.J. (20 percent); Chandler, Ariz. (6 percent); and Halifax, Canada (4 percent) ….”
- Associate Minister of National Defence Julian Fantino chats up defence industry reps at the Canadian Association of Defence and Securities Industries about buying stuff.
- Whazzup with the General who wrote the transformation/reorganization report that all the reporters got? “CGI Group Inc., a leading provider of information technology and business process services, today announced the opening of a new Canadian Defence, Public Safety and Intelligence business unit based in Ottawa with capabilities to serve the Canadian Armed Forces around the globe. In addition, the Company also announced the appointment of Lieutenant General Andrew Leslie to lead the new Defence, Public Safety and Intelligence unit. The offering will build on the corporation’s global expertise to develop and implement innovative, world-class solutions tailored to specific knowledge and requirements of Canada’s modern-day defence and security challenges ….” A bit more here.
- An interesting idea from the Royal Canadian Legion as an alternative to recognizing Afghanistan’s war dead on the national cenotaph in Ottawa. “…. some veterans argue that singling out those who died in Afghanistan for special recognition on the memorial does a disservice to the more than 100 Canadian peacekeepers who have lost their lives in various other conflicts. For that reason, the Royal Canadian Legion said Thursday that, instead of specifically acknowledging the toll in Afghanistan, the monument should be dedicated to all of those who died “In the Service of Canada.” That’s the same inscription that is found in the Seventh Book of Remembrance, which records the names of all of the Canadians who died in military action since the Korean War. “We think that an inscription that covers the sacrifice made in all wars or missions would be acceptable to most people instead of etching the individual wars or missions,” said Patricia Varga, the Legion’s dominion president ….”
- The World Socialists’ take on “royalizing” the branches: “…. Though the rose of the Canadian military will smell no sweeter under its new designation, the name change exemplifies the ideological shift pursued by the new Conservative majority government. As the Canadian capitalist class has ever more vigorously asserted its imperialist interests abroad, and employed increasingly anti-democratic methods of rule to enforce its agenda of austerity domestically, its servants in the Harper government have contemptuously discarded the “peaceful” and “liberal- social democratic” Canadian nationalism promoted by the Liberal governments of the 1960s and 1970s and sought to promote the military and the Crown as sacrosanct elements of “what it means to be Canadian.” ….”
- They’re not “war resisters”, they’re volunteers who ran away and aren’t brave enough to face the music – this from the House of Commons yesterday. “Mr. Speaker, decorated Iraq war veteran Rodney Watson has lived in limbo for two years in sanctuary at an East Vancouver church with his wife Natasha and young son Jordan, both Canadian citizens. I have come to know Rodney and know him to be strong in his conviction for peace and justice, and brave in his commitment to go up against an illegal war. It has been a tough two years, and the strong support from the war resisters support campaign has been enormously important. If Rodney were to return to the U.S., he would likely be charged, which would make his return to Canada inadmissible, tearing him apart from his family. As many as 40 other war resisters like Rodney are currently fighting to stay in Canada. This Parliament has passed two motions in support of war resisters, yet the government is still trying to deport them. I encourage Canadians to write to the immigration minister and their MPs about Rodney and all war resisters to support the call for their permanent residence in Canada.”
- Fence along the Canada-U.S. border? Whatchoo talkin’ ’bout, Willis? “The United States has distanced itself from its own report that suggested it is considering beefing up its security at the Canadian border — possibly through the construction of “selective fencing” and trenches as well as enhanced electronic surveillance. The proposed options are contained in a detailed draft report released Aug. 31 in Washington, D.C., by the U.S. Customs and Border Protection agency. The proposals will be aired at public meetings in American cities this fall, before the U.S. government considers how to further tighten the border to keep out terrorists and other criminals. But late Thursday afternoon, after reports about the possible fence hit the Canadian media, the U.S. agency released a carefully worded statement. “A border fence along the northern border is not being considered at this time,” it said ….” A summary of the report (PDF) is available here, the news release linked to the report here, and more in the Globe & Mail here.
- Meanwhile, the UAV’s drone on looking for bad guys and bad stuff going from Canada to the U.S. “The unmanned planes look north toward the long, lightly defended and admittedly porous Canada-U.S. border – the best route many Americans believe for jihadists seeking to attack the United States to sneak across. Like their missile-carrying military cousins prowling Pakistan’s skies targeting al-Qaeda suspects, the unarmed Predator aircraft that have patrolled the 49th parallel since 2009 are high-tech, sophisticated and little understood. And they are part of the same diffuse and determined effort the Unites States is making to secure its borders and defend itself. “We’re here to protect the nation from bad people doing bad things,” says John Priddy, U.S. National Air Security Operations director for the Customs and Border Protection’s Office of Air and Marine. He heads the Predator operation guarding American’s northern airspace. “This is the equivalent of the Cold War in terms of a new type of vigilance,” says Mr. Priddy, who has flown everything from Boeing 747 cargo jets to Apache helicopters ….”
- Former U.S. VP Dick Cheney’s in Canada, worried about a biological or nuclear terrorist attack.
Written by milnewsca
30 September 11 at 7:45
Tagged with Afghan detainees, Afghan interpreters, Afghanistan, Andrew Leslie, Anne-Marie Day, border security, Canadian Association of Defence and Securities Industries, Canadian Commercial Corporation, cenotaph, CFB Valcartier, CGI Group, Customs and Border Protection, Dick Cheney, El Khiam, Federal Court, General Dynamics Land Systems-Canada, government aircraft, Hansard, Helen Cooper, Jason Kenney, Joe O'Connor, John Priddy, Joint Task Force Afghanistan, Julian Fantino, Kandahar, Last Post Fund, Lebanon, M67854-07-D-5028, Michael Yon, military news, Military Police Complaints Commission, milnews.ca, Observer Group Lebanon, Paeta Derek Hess-Von Kruedener, Patricia Varga, Peter MacKay, Predator, repatriation ceremonies, Rodney Watson, ROTO 10, Royal Canadian Legion, Sean Casey, Seventh Book of Remembrance, Stephen Harper, Steven Blaney, veterans funerals, Walt Natynczyk, war resisters
- Word of a Canadian, said to be part of the anti-Ghaddafi underground, was questioned by CSIS while a…. guest of the former regime. “Canadian spies teamed up with the Gadhafi regime to question a Canadian jailed in Libya, a prominent human-rights group says. Canadian Security Intelligence Service officers travelled to Libya several times to interview the prisoner between 2002 and 2005, Human Rights Watch says. The New York-based group will circulate a statement on Wednesday revealing that it has obtained documents on this obscure case from an abandoned intelligence complex in Tripoli. Mustafa Krer, 56, immigrated to Canada from Libya in the 1990s. He was jailed as a terrorism suspect when he returned to his homeland almost a decade ago. Released only last year, he hopes to return to Canada in coming months ….” More here (Toronto Star) and here (usual Wikipedia caveats apply).
- Nelly Furtado donates bucks she made doing a show for Libya’s former boss to charity. “Canadian singer-songwriter Nelly Furtado plans to donate the $1-million she was paid to perform for then Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi’s clan to the Free the Children charity. Ms. Furtado made the announcement Tuesday at the Air Canada Centre at WE day, a youth empowerment day organized by Canadian co-founders of Free the Children, Craig and Marc Kielburger ….”
- Afghanistan (1) Troops raising money for breast cancer research while packing up in Kandahar.
- Afghanistan (2) Nova Scotia’s flag flying over Kandahar.
- Taliban Propaganda Watch Taliban says “those Haqqani characters work for US!”
- Some photos of the final exercise “Tireur Accompli” of a basic sniper’s course run in Valcartier, Quebec (via Army.ca)
- What’s Canada Buying? Anyone interested in developing a “a Naval Remote Weapons Station defence capability to the HALIFAX and IROQUOIS classes of HMC ships”? More technical detail in the draft Statement of Work here.
- CF Info-Machine issues new Backgrounder on its physical rehab program.
- Way Up North “As global interest in Arctic exploration explodes, Canada is pushing to assert rights over a larger chunk of the polar region and lure companies to exploit the territory’s promising natural resources. The government of Prime Minister Stephen Harper has long engaged in saber-rattling with Russia—Canada’s biggest Arctic rival—over territorial claims in the region. Both sides have recently sent troops to the Arctic to back up their claims, with Canada winding down its largest, and northernmost, military exercise this month. During a trip late last month to Canada’s Far North, Mr. Harper criticized Russia in an interview with The Wall Street Journal, portraying its strategy in the region as aggressive and “a disappointment.” But he said Russia’s actions—including alleged incursions into Canada’s Arctic airspace, which Moscow denies—strengthen Ottawa’s commitment to the region. Those actions “remind us, as I say, that we have an obligation as a sovereign nation to have an ability on land, sea and air to be present and to assert that presence at all times,” Mr. Harper said ….”
- Bad news about a war memorial in Montreal – this from a House of Commons statement on the issue: “…. our cenotaphs and monuments are powerful reminders of the sacrifices made by generations of Canadians. They are symbolic places where people can gather in memory of our fellow Canadians, our loved ones and family members, who served our country in the name of peace and the freedom we all enjoy today. Unfortunately, this morning, we learned that a war memorial in Girouard Park in Montreal had been vandalized. We have an obligation to preserve and respect memorials in tribute to the service and sacrifices of our men and women in uniform. I commend Sergeant Jones who notified the police about this vandalism and I hope the guilty parties will be held accountable for the seriousness of their mischief.”
- Conservative MP John Carmichael has introduced a Private Members Bill to keep folks from banning the flying of the Canadian flag (like in this case): Bill C-288, An Act respecting the National Flag of Canada. Here’s what he said in the House of Commons, here’s a summary of where the Act is at and here’s what QMI/Sun Media had to say. Caveat: most Private Members Bills don’t make it to law.
- “As the Conservative Government returns to Parliament to set new national priorities, one of these is to reinstate two expired clauses to the Anti-Terrorism Act. The Conservative Party brings back the Investigative Hearings and Preventive Arrest powers, which expired and were removed by Parliament in 2007. These two powers, which have raised criticism since they were first adopted, face few barriers with the current Conservative majority which can out-vote the combined powers of the Opposition Parties ….”
- Greeeeeeaaat…. “A soon-to-be released book about the crimes of former Canadian military commander Russell Williams may be turned into a feature film. Richard Lowry Productions Inc. has acquired the rights to Camouflaged Killer: The Shocking Double Life of Canadian Air Force Colonel Russell Williams by David A. Gibb. Gibb, a former private investigator turned journalist, delved into the psychology of Williams, a seemingly normal and responsible man who was convicted of killing two women in Eastern Ontario. The book is to be released by Penguin Group Canada on Oct. 4 ….” More here.
Written by milnewsca
28 September 11 at 7:45
Tagged with Afghanistan, An Act respecting the National Flag of Canada, Anti-terrorism Act, Bill C-288, Camouflaged Killer: The Shocking Double Life of Canadian Air Force Colonel Russell Williams, Canadian Security Intelligence Service, cenotaph, CFB Valcartier, CSIS, David A. Gibb, Free the Children, Girouard Park, HALIFAX class, Human Rights Watch, Investigative Hearings, IROQUOIS class, John Carmichael, Kandahar, Libya, Libyan unrest, military news, milnews.ca, Mustafa Krer, Naval Remote Weapons Station, Nelly Furtado, Odyssey Dawn, Operation Mobile, Penguin Group Canada, Preventive Arrest, private member's bill, Richard Lowry Productions, Russell Williams, Russia, Stephen Harper, Task Force Libeccio, Tireur Accompli, Unified Protector