Tidbits from Both Sides of the Fight News Highlights – November 5, 2012

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  • Remembering (1)  Remembering at Beaumont-Hamel  “Many Canadian and French citizens gathered (Saturday) at the Beaumont-Hamel Newfoundland Memorial, in France, to pay tribute to the men and women who served their countries from the First World War to current missions.  The Government of Canada representative, Vice-Admiral Bob Davidson, Canadian Military Representative to NATO, addressed the gathering on behalf of the Honourable Steven Blaney, Minister of Veterans Affairs. He was joined by the French Republic representative Mr. Joël Dubreuil, sous-préfet de Péronne ….”       
  • Remembering (2)  Remembering at Vimy Ridge  “Many Canadian and French citizens gathered (Sunday) at the Canadian National Vimy Memorial, in France, to pay tribute to the men and women who served their countries from the First World War to current missions.  The Government of Canada representative, Mr. Kim Butler, Plenipotentiary Minister, Canadian Embassy, Paris, addressed the gathering on behalf of the Honourable Steven Blaney, Minister of Veterans Affairs. He was joined by the French Republic representative, Mr. Pierre Clavreuil, sous-préfet of Lens ….”       
  • Remembering (3)  Remembering in the Senate  “Media are invited to attend a special ceremony (today) with the Honourable Noël A. Kinsella, Speaker of the Senate of Canada, the Honourable Andrew Scheer, Speaker of the House of Commons and the Honourable Steven Blaney, Minister of Veterans Affairs, for the launch of Veterans’ Week 2012. Canadian youth participating in Encounters with Canada will offer reflections on the Battle of Passchendaele ….”       
  • Remembering (4)  Remembering the animals  “Mr. Royal Galipeau, Member of Parliament for Ottawa-Orléans and representative for the Honourable Steven Blaney, Minister of Veterans Affairs, Senator Yonah Martin, Mrs. Laureen Harper, Honorary Patron of the Animals in War Dedication Project, Brigadier-General M.K. Overton, Assistant Chief of Military Personnel of the Canadian Armed Forces, and Mr. Russell Mills, Chair of the National Capital Commission (NCC), along with Veteran Lloyd Swick, founder of the project, (Saturday) unveiled a dedication to honour animals who served alongside their human comrades in war. The dedication consists of three interpretative plaques explaining the roles played by animals during past wars. A bronze statue of a medical service dog stands nearby ….”       
  • Remembering (5)  Remembering to remember  “The Honourable Steven Blaney, Minister of Veterans Affairs, today issued the following statement encouraging all Canadians to take time to remember this Veterans’ Week from November 5 to 11 ….”
  • Remembering (6)  University of Toronto paper“…. Whether our soldiers personally support the war or not is irrelevant. Whether or not the war should have been fought is similarly irrelevant. These soldiers went to war, end of story. Now it is up to us as civilians to be there for them in terms of civil employment, mental and physical health services, and veteran pension plans — something that, with the recent government cuts to Veteran’s Affairs, we unfortunately have yet to live up to. Veteran’s benefits are the neglected cost of war ….”
  • Remembering (7)  How Applebees helps remember  “In what has become a neighbourhood tradition, Applebee’s restaurants will honour our nation’s veterans and active duty Canadian Forces by inviting them to their neighbourhood Applebee’s for a free meal on Remembrance Day – Sunday November 11 …. Veterans and active duty military will need to provide proof of service, which includes: permanent ID card for active personnel, temporary ID card for reservists, veteran’s card or a photograph in uniform or wearing uniform ….”
  • Remember this guy, a retired Colonel charged with forgery and uttering a forged document (news release also here if previous link doesn’t work)?  He’s been found guilty of “altered a document made for a departmental purpose”, and fined $5000 – more from the Court Martial sentencing report here.
  • A federal burial fund meant to give impoverished veterans a final, dignified salute has rejected over two-thirds of the applications it’s received since 2006.  And of the requests that are accepted, Ottawa contributes just over $3,600 toward the funeral cost of destitute ex-soldiers, a figure that is substantially lower than what some social services departments pay towards the burial of the homeless and those on welfare.  According to figures put before Parliament, of the 29,853 requests made to the veterans funeral and burial program, 20,147 pleas for funding 67.4 per cent were rejected.  They either did not meet the eligibility criteria, or failed a means test, which says a qualifying veteran’s annual income must have been less than $12,010 per year ….”    
  • Conference:  It take more than just the military to sort things out overseas  Although the Canadian Forces have always been a world leader in peacekeeping and humanitarian missions, they’ve never done it alone.  How Canada works with agencies in other countries was among the topics on Saturday as the Thunder Bay Branch of the Canadian International Council, the Lake Superior Scottish Regiment, the HMCS Griffon, and the Lakehead University Department of History hosted a symposium entitled Military Operations Achieving Humanitarian Goals that examined some of the Canadian Forces recent humanitarian missions around the world ….”
  • NGO types “…. Since the First World War the global community has agreed to limit or outright prohibit the production and use of certain weapons, because of the scale of destruction (nuclear bombs), because of their horrific effects (poison gas) or, like cluster bombs, because they overwhelmingly affect the innocent. Canada, once a leader in fighting such weapons, is now a laggard ….”
  • Extra police, security and attendants were called in to work at Metro Vancouver’s SkyTrain Saturday following the discovery of an explosive device on a commuter line in Surrey. B.C.  The increased security came after the RCMP detonated an explosive found Friday on the elevated tracks. Hours after locating the first package, police also found a second suspicious object at a station in Burnaby that turned out to be a false alarm.   Transit police spokesperson Anne Drennan told The Canadian Press that about a dozen detectives will spend Saturday trying to figure out how the device ended up on the tracks.  The first device was spotted by a Surrey passenger on Friday afternoon. The device was lying between two sets of tracks and appeared to be a pipe bomb strapped to three small, empty propane tanks.  Police evacuated the station and then shut down a portion of the line as explosives experts moved in to remove the device.  Drennan said the device was the size of three fire extinguishers. It could have been thrown or placed on the guideway, she said ….”
  • More on the potential Chinese buy-in to a Canadian petro-business  “As a former deputy minister at Industry Canada, there was no one in government who knew the Investment Canada Act more intimately than Paul Boothe.  The top-tier bureaucrat, who has since migrated to academia, was instrumental in guiding a relatively young Conservative government when it surprisingly blocked the sale of domestic space technology, including the Radarsat-2 satellite, to an American firm in 2008.  After recently poring over the pros and cons of the $15.1-billion energy deal between Chinese-controlled CNOOC and Calgary’s Nexen, Boothe can’t see any good reason for turning down the deal.  He’s also well aware the answer may not be Yes.  Despite attempts over the years to make approvals of foreign investment as clinical as possible, the CNOOC-Nexen decision comes down to pure politics ….”

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5 November 12 at 7:45

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