The Five Eyes’ Daisy Chain

So the Five Eyes‘ daisy chain is alive and well. I encountered this at first hand with my own application under Canada’s Access to Information Act (ATIA), submitted in December 2006 and documented elsewhere. In summary, after a hideous delay not countenanced by the framers of the Act, I got 73 pages of redacted rubbish. … Continue reading “The Five Eyes’ Daisy Chain”

Gimme More Magna Carta!

On this very Web site I wrote a thing in March 2008, titled “What Should NATO Do?” It ended by worrying that NATO’s Afghanistan policy was in danger of drifting into the hands of the Firepower People, which now seems realistic. Imagine my surprise to discover that, later in the same year, on Dec. 5, … Continue reading “Gimme More Magna Carta!”

Treachery as Public Policy

“The bombing of Air India Flight 182 on June 23, 1985, was an act of terrorism. Three hundred and twenty-nine persons – passengers and crew – died in the North Atlantic off the coast of Ireland. The majority of the passengers were Canadian; one quarter of the victims (82) were under the age of 13. … Continue reading “Treachery as Public Policy”

Why All the Secrecy?

Kandahar’s central slammer got slammed while Canada slept. Recently, two Canadian soldiers have been killed: Col. Geoff Parker of the Royal Canadian Regiment in Kabul and Trooper Larry Rudd of the Royal Canadian Dragoons in Panjwaii, the former by a suicide bomber and the latter by a road mine. An indeterminate number of Canadians have … Continue reading “Why All the Secrecy?”

Canada’s ‘Whole Freaking Government’ Approach in Afghanistan

"Bonded in the crucible of the Kandahar mission, a new group of civil servants has emerged as the government’s go-to team for the most challenging and dangerous assignments of the day. Tougher, faster, more flexible, and more networked, these officials epitomize one of the most used buzzwords in public administration: whole of government. "Having benefited … Continue reading “Canada’s ‘Whole Freaking Government’ Approach in Afghanistan”

The Taking of Afghan Prisoners 22, 23, and 24

So an unexpected benefit of the proroguing of Parliament in January 2010 was the refreshing absence of Laurie Hawn. The more I don’t hear from Laurie Hawn, the happier I am, you know? The air seems cleaner somehow… But for me, this whole Afghan prisoner thing goes back to Aug. 17, 1917, when my Uncle … Continue reading “The Taking of Afghan Prisoners 22, 23, and 24”

Canada’s Unfinished Mandate

“We can only hope that Somalia represents the nadir of the fortunes of the Canadian Forces. There seems to be little room to slide lower. One thing is certain, however: left uncorrected, the problems that surfaced in the desert in Somalia and in the boardrooms at National Defense Headquarters will continue to spawn military ignominy. … Continue reading “Canada’s Unfinished Mandate”

Thinking Outside the Herd

You’d like to think that some buffalo at the back of the herd, following all those thundering bulls with balls, Jonathan Livingston Buffalo maybe, is thinking, in response to the shrieking of crazed humans:  "Wait a minute…" OK, so we’re having elections up here in Canada like we’re rearranging deck chairs on the Titanic. We’re … Continue reading “Thinking Outside the Herd”

Extremist Jihadist Islamist Terrorist

"Recalling the relevant international counter-terrorism conventions and in particular the obligations of parties to those conventions to extradite or prosecute terrorists…" – United Nations Security Council Resolution 1267 [.pdf], Oct. 15, 1999 In the informed debate of the last 10 years regarding "terrorism," there’s a missing acronym to define this dreadful new menace, a menace … Continue reading “Extremist Jihadist Islamist Terrorist”

Americanada? No Thanks

“The way to get the Americans to trust the border is to give them confidence that both countries have the will and ability to protect it. “The security leg of this agreement, then, would include common rules for accepting refugees, joint inspection of containers leaving international destinations en route to either country, and an integrated … Continue reading “Americanada? No Thanks”