Friday, May 14, 2010

Deal On Afghan Detainee Documents Reached!

I was wrong. I never thought the Conservatives had any intention of making a deal with the opposition on the release of the heavily redacted documents relating to torture of Afghan detainees and were instead involved in a game of chicken with what appears to be a chicken-hearted opposition. Today however all the parties involved arrived at a deal:

If a dispute arises over whether blacked-out records should be divulged to the public, it will be referred to a panel of arbiters who will decide what can be released without compromising national security. The membership of this panel is still under discussion.

NDP defence critic Jack Harris said, “It satisfies concerns about national security, while ensuring Canadians will learn the truth about how the government responded to the possibility of torture by the Afghan authorities to whom detainees were being transferred.”

Let's hope he's right, because I believe if he is there will be a day of reckoning for Stephen Harper, Peter Mckay and the rest of the tories.
 
A 24 year old soldier died yesterday in Afghanistan as the result of and IED. Private Kevin Thomas McKay, just days away from finishing his assignment in Afghanistan, has been killed by an improvised explosive device southwest of Kandahar City. Our sincere condolences to his family and friends.
 
Sadly, even General Stanley McChrystal admits that all the efforts extended by NATO forces in Afghanistan have not produced much in the way of results.
 
A little sanity regards off-shore drilling in Canada, in light of the disaster currently taking place in the Gulf of Mexico. The moritorium against oil and gas exploration on Georges Bank, one of the most productive and ecologically sensitive fishing grounds off the East Coast, has been extended to 2015. Needless to say, there are always those who will try and use a disaster like the Gulf spill to further their own agenda - in this case it's Canada's Environment Minister, Jim Prentice shilling for the tar sands in Alberta. Makes you proud, don't it?
 
Canada's Conservatives are not as tone deaf as those down south and for the moment are talking tough on off-shore drilling rules and regs. Still, they are rejecting a call for a moritorium on such exploration. Environment minister Jim Prentice says ominously, "Here in Canada, we’ve not had those kinds of incidents and that’s because of the strong regulatory environment that we have had with the National Energy Board (NEB).”  Isn't that the kind of hubris that led to the spill in the 1st place?
 
Here in Quebec, physicians have launched an online campaign to move the government to address a shortage of family doctors.

Now, after the horse is out of the barn, Charest is promising to close the barn doors (Introducing new gov't. code of ethics!).

Finally, on this day in 1968, Montreal secured a Major League Baseball franchise - here's the original CBC report. Have a box of tissue handy.

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