Wednesday, December 16, 2009

How far is too far?

Canada's Conservative government has boycotted a hearing of Commons Committee that was schedule to set the agenda for the inquiry into the mistreatment and mishandling of Afghan detainees by Canadian forces.

The Conservatives defended the move saying that now wasn't the time to be holding these inquiries into possible war crimes committed by Canadians. The boycott comes as rumors swirl in Ottawa that the Conservatives plan on suspending parliament until after the Olympic games in Vancouver.

The Conservatives accused the opposition of only trying to satisfy their "political blood lust" and also ignored a motion passed in the House of Commons to release documents that speak about Afghan detainees. This denial could lead to the current government being charged with contempt of Parliament.

So... the Conservatives are grasping at straws to maintain their image in the midst of a Human Rights controversy, trying to save face as Canada prepares to welcome the world in Vancouver for the Olympics and trying to make people forget the sorry state of our leadership with the old "bread and games"? Well I'm sorry Mr Harper, this won't just go away.

The political blood lust in this case doesn't belong to the Liberals, the NDP or the Bloc... it belongs to the Conservatives who are (supposedly) willing to to shut down the Canadian government for a few months to try and save themselves; the Conservatives who are willing to boycott an inquiry that was started by an independent overseer who's job it is to oversee certain areas of our governance and by the Conservatives who are apparently more concerned at pointing fingers than the lives the of Afghan citizens we are supposed to protect.

The Conservatives complained big time when PM Jean Chretien shut down an inquiry into the behavior of Canadian soldiers in Somalia. So did all the other parties... Now the Conservatives are the ones effectively shutting EVERYTHING down to avoid a similar subject. But Jean Chretien didn't shut down parliament or boycott committees, even if he didn't always face the music at least he never plugged his ears and pretended he couldn't hear it.

Hypocrisy seems to be the rule of thumb with the Conservatives and quite frankly I can't remember a minority government taking this much leeway and freedoms in exploiting our parliamentary system. If parliament is prorogued it would be the second time the Conservatives, in a bid to hold on to power, have done it in almost a year.

So my question to everyone is: how far is too far? How far will this government go to cloud the issues and maintain power? Because they aren't doing this to save Canada's image prior to the Olympics, they're doing it to save face while they regroup and hide and hope that the world forgets the fact that Canada may have violated the Geneva Convention.

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