Thursday, November 13, 2008

Afghan School Girls Sprayed with Acid!!!

The Taliban in a new and ever more perverted method of terrorizing Afghan citizens has stooped to spraying acid in the faces of young girls on their way to school in an effort to keep girls from learning. One of the girls was blinded for life in the attack.

The security situation in Kandahar, where the attacks took place, has been deteriorating in recent months due to an increasing number of attacks on innocent afghan citizens. Kandahar province is the Canadian Forces area of responsibilitiy. The Taliban know they can't take on the CF directly so they target the innocent instead.

Canada's Minister of Defense, Peter McKay is asking NATO once again to pony up with some troops who are willing to fight these scum. (Many NATO troops from other countries are not allowed to fight the Taliban due to caveats in their deployment contracts.)

Warning: The video below is graphic.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Remembrance Day - The Last Post

Canada's War of Independence

At the eleventh hour on the eleventh day of the eleventh month 90 years ago today, World War One came to a shuddering end with the signing of the Armistice to end the four and one half years of unimaginable human tragedy and triumph.

The soldier’s who volunteered to fight for King and Country on the battlefields of France and Belgium forged a bond that would forever mark their sense of self as Canadians.

In his excellent book ‘Shock Troops: Canadians Fighting the Great War 1917-1918, Volume Two’, author Tim Cook writes “The Great War was Canada's war of independence. The Canadian forces' battlefield success pushed the nation towards full autonomy and international recognition. In 1919, Canada signed the Treaty of Versailles, which formally ended the war, and that signature, separate from Great Britain's, revealed that something had changed in the relationship between the two countries.

Canada also joined the newly created League of Nations as a member state in its own right, although most of the prime ministers of the 1920s and 1930s did their best to avoid making any commitment that might again drag Canadians overseas from their isolated "fireproof house, far from the sources of conflagration," as one senator famously described it in the 1920s.”

Veteran, and later historian, G. R. Stevens recounted that during the war, "Canadians had become deeply conscious of a national identity and of their own superb performance in the field; they no longer felt it necessary to adopt without question usages, manners and behaviour simply because they were British. They were a branch diverging from the parent stem and the relationship of Mother Country and offspring never would be quite the same again."

“Most Canadians had come from somewhere else: losers and castoffs, the displaced and unwanted, the prosecuted and those seeking a better life had all come to carve a new life out of the vast Dominion's geography. Until the early years of the 20th century, those who lived in central Canada might never visit the east or west coast, and certainly the rural parts of the country spawned men and women less likely to travel beyond the closest towns or cities.

The war changed that. Canadians from across the country were pulled from homes and hearths and sent overseas in the largest diaspora of Canadians up to that point in the Dominion's history. Close to 7% of the country's total population left Canada during the war years, which included an astonishing 20% of the total male population between the ages of 18 and 45. And when they arrived in the camps, and later in the fighting formations of the Canadian Corps or other units, they met men who hailed from across the country.

English Anglo-Saxon Protestants served next to Frenchspeaking Catholics; east-coast fishermen rubbed shoulders with big-city Toronto factory workers; Natives, blacks and Japanese fought side-by-side with men who might never have seen them in Canada, let alone talked to them.

This is not to suggest that the Canadian Corps was one big, happy family that experienced no friction or fights. But the country did come together in its corps, taking great pride in the significant victories on the Western Front, which created a new pantheon of national heroes. The corps' success in the war also created a new sense that Canadians had done something important together, that indeed something "Canadian" existed beyond the political federation of provinces and localities.”

On this day it is imperative to remember those who sacrificed, from Passchendaele to Dieppe; From Korea to Kandahar; on this day we remember those who served and still serve this great country of ours in the name of freedom

Monday, November 10, 2008

Scott Kesterson's AT WAR ready for release

I got an e-mail from Troy Steward today telling me that he was proud to announce on his blog Bouhammer's Afghan Blog that Scott's film was now ready to go. Below are parts one and two of the AT WAR trailers. I've written before about Scott and his embed with The Red Devil's of 1PPCLI in the summer of 2006. The trailers include some of that footage.

I've read a couple of comments suggesting that Scott is trying to pull a fast one by mixing Canadian Forces footage in with other footage. I know quite a bit about Scott Kesterson, and playing fast and loose with Canadian Forces is not his style. Scott went into battle with The Red Devil's on behalf of an Oregon TV Station which broadcast that footage. In fact Scott's videos of Canadian Forces in combat have received almost 2 million viewings in total on YouTube alone.

Currently, Scott is back in Afghanistan embedded with American troops. His main mission is to get the message out about what soldiers are achieving in Afghanistan. For more information go here: to Troy's announcement. The bottom three videos on his site are clearly labled as the Red Devils.

On this evening before Remember Day, it is most important that we honour all of the Allied Forces fighting for freedom in Afghanistan. I salute Scott Kesterson for his outstanding honest work with soldiers.

AT WAR Film - Trailer 1

AT WAR Film - Trailer 2

Thursday, November 06, 2008

Canada at War: Normandy

As we approach Rememberance Day on November 11, 2008, it is important to know about the valiant sacrifice made by Canadian Forces members to ensure that our generation enjoys the freedoms that we do today. In the last couple of decades efforts have been made by CBC commissioned 'documentaries' to downplay those sacrifices and in many ways to demonize them.

Finally the government of Canada, historians, artists and others are making an effort to reconnect Canadians with our history and honour these valiant men and women. It's so very important to remember that, now especially, when we have men and women of the Canadian Forces making these same scarifices in Afghanistan, that Freedom isn't Free.

May God bless Canada.

Below is an excellent 50 minute documentary on Canada's role during the invasion of Nazi occupied France.

The Battlefields Of Normandy 1/6

The Battlefields Of Normandy 2/6

The Battlefields Of Normandy 3/6

The Battlefields Of Normandy 4/6

The Battlefields Of Normandy 5/6

The Battlefields Of Normandy 6/6

Monday, November 03, 2008

The Canadian Corps: World War One

In 8 short days it will be the 90th anniversary of the War to end all Wars. Sadly too few Canadians today know the history of how this great country of ours was forged. Between 1914 and 1918, 400,000 Canadians volunteered for the war effort. To put this in some perspective, fully 20% of male Canadians joined up. 68,000 died under the most gruesome circumstances in the history of warfare.

The Canadian Corps arrived in Europe in 1914 as loyal subjects of The British Empire. On the battlefields of France and Belgium, they fought, died and worse, as Canadians. They also achieved some of the most significant victories of the war. Those that returned home, returned as Canadians without hyphens.

The six episodes below, 50 minutes in total, taught me things about my ancestors that I didn't know. Perhaps you might find it worth your while.

May God bless Canada!

Shadows Of A Great War 1/6

Shadows Of A Great War 2/6

Shadows Of A Great War 3/6

Shadows Of A Great War 3/6

Shadows Of A Great War 4/6

Shadows Of A Great War 5/6

Shadows Of A Great War 6/6