Peter Mackay, Defense Minister of Canada has with his statement to the press, concerning the totally racist video, (The Brown Face Video) said that it is okay to be a racist as long as it is directed at Muslims. These idiots serving in our air force, that made and acted out this play in Brown-Face pretending to be Bin Laden’s brotherat a military formal gathering that was made into this video are only human, says Peter Mackay. That these racists named a fellow soldier in the video without her permission and insult in itself did not matter either, because our Defense Minister said, “They are still heroes, but they are not perfect.”
Our Defense Minister’s direct quote was as posted in the Ottawa Citizen reads, “Two years ago, certain members of the Canadian Forces stationed at CFB Greenwood filmed a video intended for their colleagues that featured inappropriate content and poor taste,” MacKay said.”Religious and cultural tolerance are important and necessary components of any national and professional institution, including the Canadian Forces, and I know the contents of this video do not represent the wider military community and its leadership.”
I write this post because Defense Minister, Peter Mackay’s statement does reflect the attitude of his government’s attitude when it comes to what is appropriate in terms of racial and religious intolerance as far as Muslims are concerned. I mean when we listen to the speeches from John Baird extolling Canada’s friendship and respect for Israel, the Jewish People and the Jewish faith and how any form of intolerance or Anti Semitic views made public in any way shape or form will be dealt with using the full extent of Canadian law, Peter Mackay’s speech sounds a trifle weak, does it not? Worse though is what message does this send to other countries of Muslim faith in whose countries we are now involved in military interventions about the respect that our armed forces on the ground have for the people, their religion, their feelings and the seriousness of the mission they are there to fulfill if we do not publicly voice our disapproval of such acts of racism by our military from the highest political and military command backed up with the appropriate punishment equal to the punishment had the racist act been leveled at our dearest ally.
I thought that we were on a mission to get rid of terrorists like al-Qaeda, and we wanted to help the innocent people, their country and leaders out of bigotry and oppression and in doing so prove to them that we were not the enemy and that we respect them. If we are sending racist armed forces personnel into these countries, who would do racist things in public and our Defense Minister calls them heroes, then what are these people to think?
We, as in the Canadian government want the world to see us and our increasingly used military forces as friends out to rid the world of terrorist; as liberators of oppressed people dying at the hands of unjust and corrupt dictatorships, which quite frankly seem to always be Muslim of late, so I would suggest that this type of public display put on by some members of the Royal Canadian Air Force is not only in bad taste, but jeopardizes our mission on a global basis and puts at risk every Canadian soldier trying to do his or her job in environments where they are already received with skepticism and mistrust.
Now Captain John Pulchny, a spokesman at 14 Wing Greenwood seemed to be more concerned about finding who made the video and if any rules had been broken, by not destroying it and passing it on to the press and then having said Brown Faced Video ending up on the news. He did not appear to be concerned though that ordering the Brown Faced Video to be destroyed, was destroying possible evidence in an ongoing investigation. Covering up instead of being transparent seems to be the answer to everything our military does and it does not seem to matter whether it is a national security issue type of military secret or not. This fits right in with the current government’s way of doing things. It is clear to see by Defense Minister Peter Mackay’s not mentioning it in his speech, that Defense Minister Mackay did not seem to care about the order given to destroy possible evidence in an ongoing military investigation either.
lt.-gen.Yvan Blondin, head of the Royal Canadian Air Force had the right idea when he said, “We have zero tolerance for acts that do not reflect our Canadian values, especially the respect we owe to other cultures and religions,” Blondin said in a statement. “I express my apologies to those who may feel offended, and reaffirm my commitment to take any possible administrative, disciplinary or corrective actions that may be warranted.” Too bad this statement did not come from, Defense Minister Peter Mackay, but that it did not has proved once again that he is not the right person for the job.
Canada in my opinion is increasingly leaning dangerously towards selective racial and religious intolerance being if not publicly acceptable, privately understandable, not only from the average citizen, but by our provincial and federal governments. I agree that we must hold members of our armed forces in high esteem, but we must act swiftly and decisively to punish the bad apples so that the whole barrel does not go rotten. We in our failure to punish the wrong doers in a public manner with all of the shame that this type of behaviour deserves aids the terrorist like Bin Ladin and those who would be like him. We as Canadians are sending the message, that we do not respect them or any of their faith and hold them somewhere lower than ourselves; that they are people be mocked by us and made fun of by the invading infidel forces.
Another thing that is becoming disturbingly common place is the concern for how the tape got out after an order was given to destroy it. Now the investigation is supposedly still on going and no punishments or conclusions have been arrived at about culpability, so why would the military order the evidence destroyed? Steven Harper has us killing people all over the world in the name of democracy, transparency of government and the rights of a population to be an informed part of their governance and yet at every question, in every crisis, questionable action we Canadians are told a lie, or evidence is withheld, blacked out of documents, or ordered destroyed.
I have asked it before and received no answer, so I will try again, “Is a little prejudice, a little bigotry, or a little intolerance okay in Canada now? Do we celebrate the deaths of our enemies in mocking plays and public spectacles? Is this the new Canadian way?”
I am no cheering section for Osama Bin Laden, but he believed that we in the west were seeking the annihilation of his people, his country and his religion and out of that belief 3,000 American lives were taken in the 9/11 attacks and the blood is on his hands. He is dead, he can pay no more for his crimes and actions such as the acting out of the Brown Faced Skit as it is called is an insult aimed at all Muslims and would seem like our gloating to his followers; almost an invitation or a push, or a dare to try something. This in my opinion is the type of thing that gives reason and justification to 9/11 type violence to the people who have always felt like we are toying with them like a cat does to a mouse before it finally kills it and consumes it.
We as a country, a government and especially as a people cannot let the world think that we believe that a little prejudice, a little bigotry and a little racial and religious intolerance is acceptable and understandable if it is directed at a perceived enemy, or a certain people.
- CONTROVERSY: Military brownface video in poor taste, Defence Minister Peter MacKay says (vancouverdesi.com)
- Canada investigates bin Laden joke video (articles.springsmilitarylife.com)