Sixty Joyless De-Britished Uncrowned Commonpoor Years (1949-2009)

Elizabeth II Vice-Regal Saint: Remembering Paul Comtois (1895–1966), Lt.-Governor of Québec
Britannic Inheritance: Britain's proud legacy. What legacy will America leave?
English Debate: Daniel Hannan revels in making mince meat of Gordon Brown
Crazy Canucks: British MP banned from Canada on national security grounds
Happy St. Patrick's: Will Ireland ever return to the Commonwealth?
Voyage Through the Commonwealth: World cruise around the faded bits of pink.
No Queen for the Green: The Green Party of Canada votes to dispense with monarchy.
"Sir Edward Kennedy": The Queen has awarded the senator an honorary Knighthood.
President Obama: Hates Britain, but is keen to meet the Queen?
The Princess Royal: Princess Anne "outstanding" in Australia.
H.M.S. Victory: In 1744, 1000 sailors went down with a cargo of gold.
Queen's Commonwealth: Britain is letting the Commonwealth die.
Justice Kirby: His support for monarchy almost lost him appointment to High Court
Royal Military Academy: Sandhurst abolishes the Apostles' Creed.
Air Marshal Alec Maisner, R.I.P. Half Polish, half German and 100% British.
Cherie Blair: Not a vain, self regarding, shallow thinking viper after all.
Harry Potter: Celebrated rich kid thinks the Royals should not be celebrated
The Royal Jelly: A new king has been coronated, and his subjects are in a merry mood
Victoria Cross: Australian TROOPER MARK DONALDSON awarded the VC
Godless Buses: Royal Navy veteran, Ron Heather, refuses to drive his bus
Labour's Class War: To expunge those with the slightest pretensions to gentility
100 Top English Novels of All Time: The Essential Fictional Library
BIG BEN: Celebrating 150 Years of the Clock Tower

Monday, 23 March 2009

A Lion not a Mouse

Four more soldiers fighting with the Royal Canadian Regiment and the Royal Canadian Dragoons were killed in Afghanistan on Friday, and eight others were seriously injured. Canada has now lost 116 soldiers and one diplomat in that war-torn country, including several hundred non-fatal combat casualties.

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My bud from military college, Lieutenant Colonel Mark Misener, acting commander of 2 Mechanized Brigade Group, CFB Petawawa, addresses the media on March 21, 2009, on the subject of the deaths of four Canadian soldiers in Afghanistan.

This sacrifice is proportionately greater than either the Americans or the British, and in real numbers significantly more so than all of Europe combined. But like anything Canada ever does, it gets greeted by the media and the world with a collective international yawn. Or worse, the subject of trash entertainment by Republican chickenhawkes on Fox News, who shamelessly chide Canada's military men as frigid wimps, whilst demonstrating their own macho credentials without ever serving a day in their life. To hell with neocon sissies.

I know a lot of men who are serving in theatre because I trained with them over 20 years ago. They are now in positions of command, like LCol. Misener above who has been rotating in and out of Afghanistan since 2002. Does he look like a wimp to you? He's as professional as they come, not a warmongering television idiot, but a field commander on the front lines who has to carefully measure his every word with manly restraint, unlike the belligerent fools on Fox who laugh at him.

It is fashionable among many so-called conservatives in the United States to think of Canada as a joke of a country. It's a view that began to take shape ever since Pierre Trudeau famously declared Canada a mouse next to the American elephant, affected by every twitch, every grunt. In one fell swoop, the historical image of Canada as a British Lion was gone forever. Liberals perferred to think of Canada as a mouse not a lion. And so a mouse in the image of many we became.

But Canada doesn't need to demonstrate its fortitude to the world, only its soberness. Canada cannot afford to be a gung ho, kick ass nation, nor should it desire such a reputation. It almost came apart at the seams during both world wars, when conscription riots in French Canada threatened the political survival of the country. Yet it still sent hundreds of thousands of men overseas to save Europe from itself. Over 100,000 Canadians perished as a result. The decision by Canada to stay out of Vietnam and Iraq has probably been more or less right. It's decision to tough it out in Afghanistan has also probably been more or less right. The desire to go to war for macho reasons is a profoundly unconservative attitude, and nearly all Canadians rightly perish the thought.

Update from American Vets: Ouch

7 comments:

David Byers said...

I think Canada and Canadians will have to just tough it out. Sad to see that perceptions can be so wrong but I for one know that they are there in the thick of it fighting the sub-human filth that is the Taliban. For every Canadian soldier who gives his life I hope he takes ten Taliban scum with him!

Kipling said...

This crank has a program at 3 am, which says a lot about his stature and influence. He thought taking pot shots at Canada would earn a chuckle from a class of ignorant bafoons who couldn't find Canada on a map. PT Barnum is suppose to have observed that no one ever went broke underestimating the intelligence of the American public. This incidence sadly proves the point.

jaguar said...

The vast majority of U.S. citizens and Fox News viewers have nothing but the utmost respect and admiration for our Canadian brothers in arms who are standing with us in this fight against the forces of evil. My son is in the 1st Inf Div and my best friend are in SW Afghanistan and have participated in numerous combined ops with Canadian Forces and say they are the most professional soldiers he has ever seen. He has learned lots of tactics from them and says the artillery battery at his FOB has the fastest and most accurate fire-missions and counter-battery fires he has ever seen. His only problem with the canadian GI's is there aren't enough of them. Says he does prefer his AIMPOINT optic to the ELCAN though.

The Monarchist said...

It is tempting to dismiss this as just the work of a few ignorant cranks, but if defending the honour of the brave and the fallen embarrasses these guys into an apology, then I think it's worth doing. I don't need these guy's sensitivity to protect my feelings, but we could use a little recognition that our guys in the field are not a bunch of panzies.

By the way, I share the crticism that we don't have nearly enough of them. I think we could use three times the army that we have now, if only the government could get the message.

Gladstone said...

Glad to hear you attended the Royal Military College, Sir Beaverbrook. I too intend to attend that most noble institute of education once I've finished my upgrading on some less than satisfactory marks from high school.

On the topic of the FOX news team that, as the youngsters would say, 'dissed' Canada's army and the sacrifice of our boys in Afghanistan, they are nothing more but strutting wannabe-macho men. Fools and cads, the lot of them. If they ever met Private Bloggins, and tried to pick a fight with him, I'd doubt they do very well. Maybe that would teach them some manners about a nation's military.

Cheers,
-Gladstone

PS: Private Bloggins is the equivalent to Tommy Atkins, but for the Canadian Army.

Anonymous said...

The program may well have intended to have been satirical, but that does not stop it from being insulting to the point of being demeaning.
The only thing Fox News and their parent company News Corporation considers is revenue (i.e. viewers). So may I suggest that you let Mr Gutfeld's betters think of his program. You can e-mail Mr Brian Lewis, Fox's Executive VP for communication at brian.lewis@foxnews.com

Mac

Quo Fas et Gloria Ducunt

Anonymous said...

My local paper printed a Times article today entitled "How Hollywood Won the War". It highlights how US studios take stories of enduring courage and ingenuity and twist the history to suit American patriotic tastes.
Citing the examples of 'The Great Escape, 'Saving Private Ryan' and 'U-571' it makes a nice wee quip of about the American take of WW2 being based on "an event that never took place, involving an American who was not there, and a machine which had not yet been invented".
Is it any wonder that there is a section of the American population that labours under delutions, such as the presenters on Fox News?