Friday, November 20, 2009

War Stories

One story has utterly dominated this morning's Globe.

It is on the front page. It is the main subject of the editorial and the editorial cartoon and the op ed and the letters to the editor.

The story is this.

Richard Colvin, a Canadian diplomat, has testified that our soldiers in Afghanistan turned over prisoners to the Afghan knowing full well that the prisoners would be tortured.

At first glance, nothing seems very surprising about such an admission.

But the reaction from the government - our government - and from some observers is amazing.

This horrible "whistleblower" must be lying, claims Defense Minister Peter MacKay.



Why would Colvin make up this tale?

And what could be more ordinary in the course of war, murder and mayhem than the torturing of prisoners?

This is new? This is news?

Why the hysterical denials?

The man was giving testimony to a House of Commons hearing. Does he have some secret and dangerous agenda?

Or is the government of the day just being plain old silly?

On the other hand...

If you want to really learn something about the realities in Afghanistan, read the piece on Malalai Joya, (pictured above) an Afghan woman and writer and activist. Here you will find more of the hard and simple truths.


Anonymous said...

For a different taqke on event, read this.

Anonymous said...

David , a couple of quick points.
Who doesnt believe that pow arent routinely tortured?
If we in Canada are against torture why are we always claiming that we are in Afganistan for the sake of the people? They obviously arent worthy of our moral superiority as they obviously condone torture

I say lets save face and pull all of our troops out of this country and NEVER deploy another Canadian soldier to any land that does not fight using all of the Geneva/Marcus of Queensbury rules and conventions.

Lets play fair

Anonymous said...

Malalai Joya has Stockholm syndrome.

And war should be discouraged, not made into a knitting circle.

Anonymous said...

All the men in my family fought/served in WWII. Bring the troops home. All one has to do is look at the mess south of us........... and stay out of it.
Iraq was *never* a war. It was an invasion. Afghanistan is futile.

Canada is respected throughout the world for a reason. Let's keep it that way.