Letter to the Editor – John E Milnes on Dictators and the Harper Government – March 17, 2011

Dear Sir:

Once upon a time there were two visible despots in the Middle East, Saddam Hussein and Moammar Gadhafi.  The scene changed when Britain and the USA, against world opinion, willfully took out Saddam Hussein.  But what is a despot?  ‘A ruler with total power, especially one who uses it in a cruel way”.  The one who is left of the two despots, Moammar Gadhafi, has publicly stated he will kill every freedom fighter and the families of those freedom fighters.
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He has, through previous actions, shown the world he can fulfill his threats. Has Britain and the USA been able to pluck up the courage to take out this more dangerous dictator?  No way.  Every news report has clearly demonstrated the fact the free world has done absolutely nothing to help the people of Libya, who are desperately trying to get from under the clutches of this maniac.  The free world has sat on its hands and has talked its way out of taking any action.
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The United Nations has, once again, proved to be a useless organization; the USA has proved it can be bought off by a threat of not getting the oil it needs from Saudi Arabia – as have Russia and China.  The other nations have simply fallen into line and done nothing.  Of course, Canada did send a warship to the Middle East but this was a total waste of taxpayers’ money for it was never intended it should do any more than stand off the coast and watch as so many freedom fighters were annihilated by Gadhafi, the madman.
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Canada has even allowed the Libyan ambassador, a Gadhafi appointee, to return with false words of condolence for those seeking a democracy. What price the Lockerbie massacre? Canada did have a role to play, it was Canadians who Gadhafi killed in that air disaster.  On the basis of that fact alone Canada should have aided the freedom fighters. Instead we have endorsed the Gadhafi philosophy of death for anyone who strives for a good life. Where is the Canadian conscience?  What price democracy?
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My reading of the scenario, because nothing else explains the inaction, is as follows:  The royal family of dictators ruling Saudi Arabia contacted the USA and explained they needed to have a dictator survive in the current Middle East upheaval to show that those seeking freedom from dictatorship can be defeated.  Gadhafi was the ideal candidate for he has thumbed his nose at the rest of the world with regularity.  This madman does not care what the West sees as democracy. What he sees, as being more important, is a continuation of his despotic rule.
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The United Nations and the United States willingly obliged and Canada, taking its orders from the USA, willing sat on both of its hands.  Canada even wasted taxpayers’ money by sending a government minister to Europe and Cairo to blather the inappropriate words, “we are consulting with our allies”.  This, of course, translates to the usual Conservative mantra of “let’s do nothing” when it comes to international affairs. We must ignore the millions of unaccountable Canadian tax dollars spent in Haiti and fighting a losing war in Afghanistan.  Both the latter are pet schemes of this Prime Minister so they get our taxpayers’ money.
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Why can’t we help people fighting for their freedom by simply giving the freedom fighters the tools with which to defend themselves, weapons, food, water and medical supplies?  There was no need for boots on the ground, just supplies.  No, that would be contrary to the instructions Canada has received from the USA and, heavens above, we cannot do that.
It is time we had a new federal government, one that acts in accordance with Canadian public desires and rules with honesty.
John E. Milnes  – South Stormont
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