News Highlights – 15 Apr 12

  • Syria (1) This could get …. interesting  NATO can help Turkey only if the Syrian forces cross the border with Turkey, Canadian Foreign Minister John Baird said in response to Turkish Prime Minister Erdogan’s statement. Erdogan announced that Turkey can appeal to NATO with the request to apply Article 5 of the NATO charter. According to it, any aggression against each member states is perceived as aggression against the entire alliance. Baird recalled that Canada is a member of NATO and if Syrians want to carry out military action in one of member-states of the alliance, then they will respond, Rossiyskaya Gazeta reports.”
  • Syria (2)  Here’s the Rossiskaya Gazeta article, in (clunky) Google English (original in Russian here“Canadian Foreign Minister John Baird said that NATO will come to the aid of Ankara only in the case of Syrian soldiers crossing the border with Turkey. So the Canadian Minister commented on the statements of Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan on the attack from the territory of the refugee camps in Syria, Turkey Kilis, reports ITAR-TASS . Erdogan noted in particular that might appeal to NATO with a request to use the 5th article of the Charter of the Alliance, which states that any aggression against a NATO member is considered as an aggression against the entire alliance. It is assumed and the related general military response. “Canada – a member of NATO, and if the Syrians are willing to conduct a military operation in one of the member countries of the alliance, then on our part to follow a strong reaction,” – said Baird. According to Foreign Minister of Canada, today NATO is not in any conversations about the possibility of establishing any “buffer zones” in Syria with the forces of the alliance. Canada supports the provision of humanitarian assistance to the people of Syria, but is opposed to arming the Syrian opposition, said Baird.”
  • Way Up North  More on Arctic Generals’ Summit results  “Defence chiefs from eight Arctic nations agreed Friday in Goose Bay, N.L., to co-operate more closely on dealing with disasters and searchand-rescue operations in the Arctic. “I am very pleased with the discussions amongst the eight chiefs of defence just completed in Goose Bay,” said Gen. Walter Natynczyk, Chief of the Defence Staff. “This is the first time the northern chiefs of defence have had the opportunity to meet, as a forum, to discuss issues unique to our respective regions. We were able to gain an understanding of the unique challenges each faces with regards to emergency response and for support to our civilian authorities ….”
  • F-35 Tug o’ War  MP and former fighter pilot Laurie Hawn gives a lengthy and detailed defence of the program in an annotated version of a longish letter (PDF) shared by the Eric Palmer blog (apparently an American who now lives in Australia)  “…. When this all started, I was a Super Hornet fan. Everything that I have seen, read and heard since has convinced me that the F-35 is the answer. No one who has studied the options with adequate information in at least ten countries has reached any different conclusion. It is not risk free; no new program is. There are echoes of the New Fighter Aircraft Program here, and that program turned out just fine. We need to get on with it.”  Huge H/T to Mark Collins for pointing me to both the letter and Eric’s blog
  • Taliban Propaganda Watch:  Donate now – operators are standing by!

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