Editorial Cartoon by Graeme MacKay, The Hamilton Spectator – Wednesday September 26, 2001
Canada’s war is already over
If Canada applied to participate in joint military operations, it would be turned down — which is why John Manley’s belated promise of ground troops is less manly than it sounds. He knows full well they won’t be required. His generous offer is as laughable as me offering to play in the Wimbledon men’s final. The reality is that what’s left of Canada’s forces is too poorly equipped to share a battlefield with the Americans, the British, the Australians or any reasonably funded army. Even New Zealand, which isn’t exactly a famous military power, is in a position to make a more useful contribution through its SAS, the kind of elite special forces that will be especially prized in this most modern of wars. Canada’s equivalent, the secrecy-shrouded JTF2, have no international reputation except as an ill-disciplined rabble. Intelligence? CSIS is underfunded and politically irrelevant: When they report that 50 global terrorist groups are actively operating in Canada, the Prime Minister files it in the bottom drawer under his golf club bill-of-sale napkins and, if anyone brings it up, flatly denies its conclusions. Canada is the only G7 country whose government is involved in covert sabotage of its own intelligence gathering.
Yet, confronted with an obvious truth, we persist in hunting for ludicrous alternatives. Is it that Bush personally dislikes Chrétien? You can’t blame the guy. In his speeches, our Prime Minister has a half-dozen jokes about what a dummy Dubya is: “I explained to him that Alberta is in Canada,” etc. In person, he’s boorishly patronizing: Chrétien welcoming Bush to the Summit of the Americas in Quebec: “Bienvenue.” Bush: “Thank you, sir.” Chrétien: “That means welcome.” (Source: Mark Steyn, National Post)