02.08.2016 01:12 PM

ISIS, Trudeau and democracy

You may not like it, but – if you’re a democrat – you have to accept it. That’s how it works.


  1. Kelly says:

    Bombing doesn’t work. It just doesn’t. Like Trudeau reminded us in the press conference today…It didn’t work in Afghanistan (or Libya or Cambodia) and now we are going to do something that actually is effective — giving locals the capacity to do what THEY need to do — rather than something that was orchestrated as a political stunt to appease the Americans.

    Nice to see grown ups in charge, again.

    • TimL says:

      Yes, bombing does work, and it is working in Syria. Especially when being done in conjunction with the forces on the ground that we are training.

      Maybe a “grown-up” could explain why its acceptable to the Liberals to refuel other countries’ bombers, and help them identify targets, but not OK to do it ourselves.

      • Kelly says:

        Those roles actually aren’t ok, either. The united states, UK and Saudi Arabia should be supplying all the troops — about 100,000 of them — because they created this mess. All of it. We didn’t. We should provide humanitarian aid like any decent country would. The USA has the resources to defeat ISIS but wants a coalition to help justify their illegal invasion of Iraq. Harper jumped at the chance to make it look like Canada supported the illegal Cheney, Rumsfeld, Wolfowitz invasion. He severely damaged Canada’s reputation and endagered Canadian lives for a stupid ideology and thirst for Kurdish oil rights.

    • G. McRae says:

      Re: “Bombing does not work”. Naive. Tell that to the RAF. We’d be goosestepping and speaking German otherwise.

      • Kelly says:

        LOL, France and the UK were basically finished by the time Hitler stupidly invaded the USSR. The Soviets and their winter fatally weakened Germany, then after much British begging, the US reluctantly entered the European war on the Western front. Frankly we are lucky we aren’t all speaking Russian.

        This stuff is in any first year modern European history textbook.

        • G. McRae says:

          Russian, German… the bombing still worked.

        • Brion Pollon says:

          The Americans entered WWII in Europe after Hitler declared war on them much the same as the Islamic State has declared war on western civilization. Instead of standing and fighting for our cherished “rights and freedoms”, Justin Trudeau has decided to cut and run.

    • Maps Onburt says:

      Bombing DOES work. You’re spouting nonsense by twisting a little argued fact that bombing campaigns can’t hold territory into something ridiculous on the face of it. The bombing of Germany destroyed their ability to keep up the arms manufacturing to allow them to win battles – it gave the Russian’s time to bring the weight of their full armies to bear and bog the Germans down in Stalingrad. It destroyed their ability to transport fuel and supplies to the battlefields and basically starved the German army into submission. The bombing of Japan brought an undisputed early end to the war. The unrestricted bombing campaigns of Rolling Thunder brought the North Vietnamese to the peace table in Paris when no number of US troops could do the same – every time the US went unrestricted, the NVA sued for peace. The bombing of Kosovo brought an end to that war without a single NATO soldier firing a shot. The bombing of ISIS has stopped their advances and have enabled the opposition to train, arm themselves and go on the offensive to retake cities that ISIS had captured. The bombing campaigns have been very successful but that hasn’t stopped Sonny’s Dazed from pulling our fighters and dumping in about 150 more trainers in harm’s way. Totally illogical but then I didn’t expect any different.

    • Ronald O'Dowd says:


      It worked in Kosovo.

  2. Jack D says:

    Big praise coming from the WH for Canada’s new proposed engagement strategy.

    Can’t wait to hear the Opposition bitch about letting our allies down.

  3. Darren H says:

    Wrong. Air support is critical for offensive and defensive operations. It also has the effect of discouraging the enemy from gathering their forces together when preparing for attacks. And yes our little six plane contribution will be sorely missed by Kurdish and Iraqi forces, and was not a political stunt. You should be ashamed of your comments denigrating our brave pilots who gladly put themselves in harms way because they believe in the mission. Pulling them out is the political stunt that may contribute to destabilizing the area. Better to have more Russians take up the slack? Besides, what is the basis for discontinuing the bombing mission? Has there been negotiations for peace with ISIL leadership?

  4. Rich says:

    Bombing does work WHEN ISIS decides to attack your troops while they are involved in training or humanitarian missions . Why remove that as an option?

    I imagine our PM’s words from today applied to the situation with the Nazis in WW2 with him as PM.
    Same logic, different and hypothetical scenario I know.
    “We think we ought to avoid doing precisely what our enemies want us to do: they want us to elevate them, to give in to fear, to indulge in hatred,” Prime Minister Justin Trudeau told a news conference Monday.
    “The lethal enemy of barbarism isn’t hatred, it’s reason. And the people terrorized by ISIL every day don’t need our vengeance, they need our help.”
    None of “We shall fight on the beaches, we shall fight on the landing grounds, we shall fight in the fields …. ” is found in his being.
    I did have high hopes but I now believe his mandate is turning out to be our loss.

  5. Al in Cranbrook says:

    I suspect the likes of Hussein, Melosevic and Qadafi would offer up a different opinion of strategic air power from the Liberals.

    But whatever, it’s pretty much policy pulled out of the proverbial ass that we’re stuck with.

    In the same manner as First Nations’ members are stuck with Liberals favoring band councils by removing full disclosure of how they spend bands’ funds, and favoring union bosses over the membership by also repealing full disclosure of how their dues are spent, along with repealing the right of their members to secret ballots so they can vote according to their conscience.

    Wear it all with pride, people.

    I sure as hell didn’t vote for this crap.

  6. Greyapple says:

    Overall, I agree with this policy, but I’ve yet to hear a coherent argument for the jets to be brought home. If fighting ISIS is worth investing more boots on the ground, why not planes in the sky. Sure, there’s a mandate, but they already broken/back tracked on other election promises so why not this one? If the voters are forgiving about refugees and deficits, surely they can excuse 6 jets. Besides, the bombing mission has always registered significant popular support.

    The right-wing “war hawks” will likely scream the loudest about this, but left leaning “peaceniks” will have the least to be happy with. If you wanted Canada out of “Harper’s War,” Trudeau’s sending more troops there, which if I understood Gen. Vance correctly will be taking part in combat, shouldn’t sit well with you. Even the pulling of the CF-18s will be small comfort. After all, does still taking part in the bombing campaign, via our refueling planes and forces on the ground pointing out targets, while not actually pulling the trigger amount to much ethically?

    On a more cynical note, I wonder how many Liberal supporters would be crying “war monger” if Harper had upped out commitment to this fight in such a way? (Not you Mr. Kinsella, I know you’ve been consistent in support for this mission) With or without the jets, Trudeau has placed us deeper within the bloody mess that is Syria/Iraq, and I fear our boys will be in far greater peril than they ever were fighting “Harper’s War.” But, in my opinion, its a worthy fight.

  7. PJ says:

    I’m happy….I wouldn’t want one of our pilots to wind up like the unfortunate Jordanian…..and I question how useful our small force of jets was. I think training of anti-Daesh soldiers and more humanitarian aid is the right decision…..
    In the end, this may help put an end to Daesh faster than our small contribution from the air.

  8. lou says:

    The telling part is where the defence minister sat during this announcement. Is this not a military issue? This is not a decision that will benefit those put in peril. This is not a decision made by those who know, but a decision made over latte’s. As for the mandate, how does 39.4 become a clear mandate when 39.2 was an affront to democracy. A strong leader knows when to alter a poorly thought out promise. A weak leader is blinded by his own wisdom. In this case, lack of it.

  9. billg says:

    If these people’s lives are not worth fighting for why are we bringing them into the Country?
    And, why do we pat ourselves on the back for bringing in less then one half of one percent of the people that are desperate for food, warmth and even clothing.
    5 million children, homeless, cold, hungry….meh….fight your own fight I guess.
    We wont be doing any bombing, but, we’ll sell them what they need to bomb, we’ll load the bombs on your plane, and, we’ll tell the pilots where they should be dropped because that’s our specialty?
    Sanctimonious pious bullshit.
    And I said that about the Harper smoke and mirror show too.
    I cannot begin to imagine the thoughts that the millions of mothers have at night when they pray and wonder why no one will help them.
    That this is a Left vs Right issue is mind numbing.
    The new world order, if its complicated and difficult then why bother.

  10. Al in Cranbrook says:

    Les, make no mistake about this: The left want to rejig our electoral system to ensure that it will be virtually impossible for anything even remotely “conservative” to ever win another election. The NDP will back the Liberals to the hilt on this one.

    And I fully expect them to get away with it.

    At which point Canada as we know it will be essentially history.

    • Ted H says:

      After ten years I am tired of hearing the rationale of any f**king Conservative on any subject and I am glad to have Justin as Prime Minister and ready to give him a chance to develop his policies. I am confident they will bear more equitable results than ten years of Conservative ideology put before common sense and evidence.

      • The Doctor says:

        Damned conservatives . . . Are there no Gulags we can send them to?

        • e.a.f. says:

          what did the gulags ever do to deserve the cons being sent there?

          O.K. lets all remember as much as I and others dislike Cons, they are part of our political society and as such ought to continue to exist in politics. its why we call it a democracy. there are 100 who were elected to Parliament. some one must like them, so we are stuck with them.

          We might want to remember why the Cons were elected in the first place and got to stay there for 9 yrs.

    • doconnor says:

      That’s just because conservatives are so unpopular they can’t get elected on any system except one that distorts the result.

  11. Ridiculosity says:

    Trudeau clearly said he was going to do this if elected. He then won a massive majority, giving him a strong mandate to act on his words. End of story.

    • BillBC says:

      Re “massive majority.” He won more seats under that system he now trashes. But he got 39% of the popular vote, same as Evil Harper. Not very massive

      • The Doctor says:

        No, it’s massive when a Liberal does it, and it’s fake when a Conservative does it. Get with the progressive program.

  12. Ronald O'Dowd says:


    KINSELLA right. Trudeau still wrong. End of story.

  13. Steve T says:

    Sorry, but there are a bazillion things in every election platform, and I don’t believe that every voter who voted for a particular candidate agreed with everything in that candidate’s platform. Often, probably always, voting is a “least of the evils” choice.

    So, just because someone voted for Justin, doesn’t mean they can’t oppose some of his ideas.

  14. Al in Cranbrook says:

    I think Andrew Coyne sums it up not too bad…


    All the more fun considering it’s pretty much a given that he voted for ’em.

  15. R News says:

    Did we also give him a mandate to build mosques on our military bases and purchase Korans for the refugees? Any chance the Saudi’s might flip the bill for the literature? Why do I have to pay for this shit? How about the gold reserve – did we give him a mandate to sell 43% it? Nah, he’s the Justin, he can do whatever he wants as long as there’s a good selfie in it…

  16. Rodney says:

    You guys pushing for alberta independence are hilarious. Good luck getting oil to tide water as an independent country.

    • nobonus4nonis says:

      Les. what will you do for water while we are “sitting on our cylinders” You had ten years to save enough money to last a century but blew it all with idiots like Prentice and Redford at the helm not to forget the billions wasted in Las Vegas while at the same time poisoning your own well. If you think you can invade the great lakes of Ontario for drinking water don’t bother we’ll be too busy fighting off the Americans once California, Arizona and Nevada run completely dry buy hey enjoy the view … too bad you can’t drink mountains.

  17. Peter says:

    I think Trudeau is trying to appeal to a lot of Canadians who are addicted to the old Pearsonian national self-image of peacemakers, peacekeepers, humanitarians, honest brokers, defenders of the UN, etc., etc.–a United Church perspective on foreign policy. These folks like to proclaim geostrategic certainties like war is never the answer or bombing never works (Kelly, come on down). Only a Canadian (well, maybe a Swede too) could be so certain everybody else is on the wrong track and the world is in desperate need of, not our military muscle, but our moral inspiration and leadership. It has its noble side in some circumstances and I don’t completely scorn it, but many of its advocates fail to see how self-indulgent it can be in a dangerous world and how it can make us look righteous as parsons, but naïve and parasitic. As many pundits, including pro-Liberal ones, are saying, there is no coherent rationale to this new policy and no one is even pretending it will help the cause against ISIS. It will, however, boost the self-image of many Canadians, who fail to see how it is ultimately grounded in an admission of weakness, dependence and irrelevance.

    • Kelly says:

      ISIS exists because of the US, UK and Saudi Arabia. THEY can put boots on the ground and eliminate ISIS. By joining the phony coalition, Canada is legitimizing the illegal invasion of a Sovereign country. Full stop. We should do the right thing and take refugees created by US imperialism. ISIS is terrible. For sure. But why should we do anything when the US is to blame and they have the resources to stop them? And then we criticize Russia for illegally invading Crimea. None of the major world powers are our friends. Their individual citizens might be but the oligarchs who own their governments and who create these messes should get none of our help. Why are we such suckers?

  18. EB says:

    RE: Bombing works

    In WWII we used bombs to flatten cities. Huge impact, especially Nagaski and Hiroshima. In the 21st century, we no longer do that as we refuse to accept that civilian casualties (Collateral Damage) are acceptable. I argue that the comparison can not be made.

    I refuse to accept that bombing, the way it is done today has the effect everyone seems to want. Demonstrably, we have been playing Whack-A-Mole in the Middle East for 20+ years. The alarming thing is, that each new Mole that pops up is more dangerous and more radical than the previous one.

  19. Kelly says:

    Here is a thought experiment.

    Imagine Zimbabwe discovers a giant oil field inside its borders. China says Zimbabwe’s people are suffering under Mugabe, plus our spies tell us he has an atomic bomb. We must liberate the longsuffering people of Zimbabwe and stop the use of nukes. Russia says yes, those poor people. We will do the right thing and help. They make their case to the UN. The UN says you’re lying. China asks Canada to join the coalition. We politely decline. China and Russia say the UN is corrupt and they “liberate” Zimbabwe. They completely wreck the place making it much worse, political pressure grows and they install a puppet government dominated by one ethnic group. They leave claiming mission accomplished.

    A few years later a militia originating in a rival ethnic group launches a horrific civil war and atrocities are committed on all sides. Then the rebel Zimbabwean group starts blowing stuff up in St.Petersburg and Shanghai.

    China says we need a coalition to stop these rebels. The new Rhino party government in Canada, fearing a closing of the Chinese border to Canadian Hockey Tape jumps on board and says we have to stop those savage rebels we will join the righteous Chinese and Russians and send Jets…

    But wait, you say…China and Russia broke international law and invaded a sovereign country under false pretenses…now they want help because they’re unwilling to put their own boots back on the ground to secure the country that THEY wrecked?

    Thanks but no thanks. We will do the decent thing and take in refugees that arose due to their illegal prior actions.

    This is the situation we are in now. Only the names have been changed.

    • nobonus4nonis says:

      dead on but the Saudi’s will not be amused nor will the great war criminal Mr painterpants down in Dallas. mission accomplished indeed. I said it before. the best atrocities are always committed by other people.

  20. Aongasha says:

    First of all let’s agree that no matter what Trudeau did, the WH and other allies are not going to attack it publicly and that the diplomats will have arranged for supportive comments on what is seen as the plus of more military on the ground. That’s all a PR exercise and our host knows it better than most. Secondly 63% in the latest poll wanted continued or more involvement by the jets. This included a majority of Liberals asked. Even the CBC poll ended up with the majority against withdrawal. As even Liberal -leaning columnists have noted explanations for withdrawal have been muddled to say the least and it appears only to be about Trudeau making a campaign promise. In fact it appears, his generals have been making more sense of the situation than he has.
    Finally before the weirdos come after me, please note I have no problem if you support Trudeau’s decision, just don’t lie about where public opinion is at on this.

  21. nobonus4nonis says:

    Kinsella … Please enough with the ISIS posts. They stir up the festerati terribly and scare the horses too.

  22. e.a.f. says:

    Kelly writes an interesting story.

    We simply did not have the right to invade Iraq, the second time. There was no reason, beyond some people thought it might be a good idea, people who really weren’t that bright and weren’t going to have to deal with the effects. If world leaders though we ought to go to war, I’d be so much better about it if the world leader had to lead the army personally, you know, like in days of old, when the King led the army. As long as leaders don’t have to lead the armies, they will go to war whenever it suits them. They don’t die and their friends in the armament business makes a lot of money.

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