22 August 2006

The Small Fish Gone, Time to Deal with the MPs Now

*UPDATE* Borys has resigned his post. Anybody care to wager whether or not the NDP MP will face any consequences for her statements?

I'm sure that everybody knows by now that Thomas has been made to take a long walk off a short pier regarding his position with the YLCBC. Good first step. Now for the big fish, Peggy Nash of the NDP and Borys Wrzesnewskyj of the Liberals. These two members of Canada's Parliament are on the record as supporting the removal of Hezbollah from the list of terrorist organizations that are illegal in Canada, and thus not to be negotiated with or coddled, financed or supported.

This little ditty comes from Borys: “Hezbollah has a political wing. They have members of parliament. They have two Cabinet ministers. You want to encourage politicians in this military organization so that the centre of gravity shifts to them.” For her part, Ms. Nash feels “that it is just not helpful to label them a terrorist organization.”

OK, everybody's allowed to have an opinion and express it. Beauty of living in a great country such as Canada and all. But try to reconcile the above two statements with the following ones from a terrorism expert who knows much more about Hezbollah than these two MPs combined:

The Lebanon-based group has cells on every continent, and its highly skilled operatives have committed horrifying attacks as far away as Argentina. Before September 11, 2001, it was responsible for more American deaths than any other terrorist organization. Hassan Nasrallah, the group's secretary-general, recently proclaimed, "Death to America was, is, and will stay our slogan."

Deputy Secretary of State Richard Armitage has warned of Hezbollah's lethality, noting that "Hezbollah may be the A team of terrorists," while "al Qaeda is actually the B team."

Both Hezbollah's terrorist actions and its guerrilla warfare are facilitated by the group's extensive international network. Hezbollah operatives have been found in France, Spain, Cyprus, Singapore, the "triborder" region of South America, and the Philippines, as well as in more familiar operational theaters in Europe and the Middle East. The movement draws on these cells to raise money, prepare the logistic infrastructure for attacks, disseminate propaganda, and otherwise ensure that the organization remains robust and ready to strike.

There are also reports that Hezbollah is trying to establish its own Palestinian proxy, the Return Brigades. Such support for Palestinian terrorists has helped disrupt the peace process at little cost to Hezbollah itself.

In marked contrast to the Lebanese government, it offers relatively efficient public services and runs effective schools and hospitals. Although such social and political involvement does not indicate a fundamental reversal in the movement, as some apologists suggest, it does reflect a broadening of Hezbollah's functions beyond political violence.

So that's Hezbollah in a nutshell. If you'd like more of what I've put up above, head over to the Foreign Affairs website and check Daniel Byman's excellent article, "Should Hezbollah Be Next?" Why are Canadian MPs becoming apologists for Hezbollah's ongoing existence as a terrorist network that does some social work as a side project? I'm sure that a lot of folks have heard about Hezbollah handing out wads of cash to Lebanese civilians who had their houses bombed during the recent conflict that Hezbollah started and bears sole responsibility for. Where do they suspect this cash is coming from? Terrorist fundraising, Syria, and Iran. I'm very disappointed to see Canadian MPs get distracted from the real problem in this situation and go so far as to suggest that we shouldn't be calling terrorist organizations terrorist organizations. I guess they're just taking their cue from the CBC, but let's not be afraid to call it like it is, folks.


Jason Bo Green said...

Hundred percent agree.

They are out of their depth here, and lacking in expertise (just like I am).

I'm REALLY fucked off about Nash. That wrongful and no-basis accusation of racism put the hate in my heart for her. She's as evil as her Liberal predecessor was.

I fucking hate all politicians, they can all choke to death for all I care.

RGM said...

You probably wouldn't much care to read Alexa McDonough's letter in today's Post. It had me pretty furious and prompted me to write in yet another letter. I doubt if it'll get published, either way I'll put up her letter and my response to it tomorrow. My frustration grows more palpable by the day with some of these people.

Jason Bo Green said...

I'm Done with McDonough!

They're clearly all out of their depth - shouldn't have been there in the first place. I doubt anything will happen to Nash, which is maybe as it should be, perhaps. As an MP, she can say stupid things. Borys on the other hand, had a position beyond MP.

This is why I don't think MPs should be anything but MPs. Cabinet-wise I like how the US appoints.

Well, a shadow cabinet/critics, I guess, would *have* to be made of MPs...

Chuckercanuck said...

Peggy Nash:

Next NDP leader!

RGM said...

Peggy Nash has the same position with the NDP that Borys did with the Liberals.

Chucker, wouldn't that be grand?

Jason Bo Green said...

No it would most certainly NOT be grand!

I like elections with solid, terrific leaders in every single party - I like to have a HARD decision on the ballot.

We need another Pearson and another Broadbent.

Harper can stay, but after him, we need another - no Stockwell Days!

RGM said...

It's got an upside to it -- after being severely weakened by having a poor leader and (hopefully) seeing their House representation decimated, and if the Libs continue to look to the Left as their road back to power, it'd open up the opportunity for a merger.

Then if we could just get rid of the Bloc by convincing Quebeckers that their best hopes lay in a future that has Quebec as a strong province within Canada, we'd be back to a two-party state.

Jason Bo Green said...

I'm all for having several workable parties. I like having the NDP around. But not under Layton, and not people with yahoos like it is.

When Ontario got sick and tired of both the PCs and the Libs, it was able to turn to the NDP.

So many Americans are unhappy with both the R and D parties - they'd sure like a third party to try out. We're lucky to have a third party, AND the ability to start up a new party so easily. I think we should keep it.

Again, to be clear, I think Jack Layton should resign and hand over to Ed Broadbent.

Or, come to think of it, Bob Rae. In an alternate universe, that is. Or Roy Romanow.

Anyway, "someone who could actually be PM, as opposed to Layton, who is a city councillor still", is what i'm saying.

Although I thought the PCs were weak at the time, I thought it was beneficial to have the Reform Party around, too. It was like the opposite-NDP.

Brian C said...

I don't like the two party system since it mostly becomes "us" and "them" and it polarizes the electorate and sometimes both the Libs and Cons are wrong. However, I would say that the third party does not need to be the NDP. :)

RGM said...

Would your third party of choice happen to be Green, Brian? ;)

I understand the value of a third party as an avenue to register discontent with the "big two" or even as a first choice because it's a better fit for one's beliefs. Really, no matter how big of a tent the Liberals and Conservatives claim to have, certain events can demonstrate there are limits to dissension in the ranks. This can leave people feeling without a place to call their political home.

I do like the stability that a two-party system brings; more time can be spent on governing than having to make sure there's enough people in the House to ward off any silly antics like a confidence motion. Like any democratic system, there are opportunities and constraints. The key is to work within that system to appeal to a maximum number of people, rather than play the opportunistic game of selective vote-targeting.

Anyways, enough ranting, I need some sleep after a rather frustrating and aggravating day.

Jason Bo Green said...

Hope tomorrow is less frustrating and aggravating, champ.