View From the Hill by Keith Beardsley – Supporting Veterans on VE Day a Good Idea – MAY 4, 2015

Dr. EvilHarper’s visit to Iraq, the Kurds and eventually the Netherlands to join with our vets in celebrating VE-Day was great political theater.

It reminded me of the vintage propaganda film footage we see from World War Two where the leader flies in to visit the troops and he is then shown huddled with military officials and commanders and later peering through binoculars at the enemy lines. It is a time proven technique that works and certainly gets the public’s attention back home.

Was the entire trip necessary, probably not as Prime Minister’s don’t have to personally hand out cheques for aid, but in an election year it was a great way to separate Harper from the other leaders. It gave an opportunity for Harper to once again demonstrate that he is the man in charge and reminded Canadians (and of course voters) that he is not like the other leaders; he is willing to make the tough decisions.

Joining with our vets as they remembered VE-Day and the liberation of the Netherlands was more than symbolic as he needs to patch up the relationship with our veterans that had been so badly damaged with previous political missteps. Harper was right to take the opportunity (as should all of our political leaders) to remind the present generation of Canadians of the sacrifices made in defence of freedom. It is hard for the present generation to comprehend the massive causalities that the Canadian forces sustained fighting across Northern Europe and in the Italian campaign. 7600 Canadians died liberating the Netherlands and the campaign in Europe cost Canada 79,774 casualties, of which 21,478 were killed.

It is worth noting that as of the writing of this post, neither the Liberals nor the NDP had posted a tribute to our vets commemorating VE-Day. That was a good move on Harper’s part. As we get closer to our election day we will see more of this from all of the political leaders as they try to differentiate themselves from the others.


  1. Harper “not like the other leaders.” Absolutely, Mr. Beardsley, and thank goodness. The others aren’t deceitful and destructive.

    Harper “is willing to make the tough decisions.” Please, Mr. Beardsley. For once drop the PMO script and connect with reality . What’s tough about going all out for photo-ops with Canada’s troops, only to shaft them as traumatized veterans? What’s tough about using taxpayer money to advance Conservative propaganda (Economic Action Plans that go nowhere)? What’s tough about appointing scandal-prone Senators as party bagmen? What’s tough about lying to the Canadian people (the F-35s take only one shining example)? What’s tough about fear-mongering? What is tough about Bill C-51, flawed legislation with secret police implications? What’s tough about avoiding responsibility for Canada’s environment? What’s tough about muzzling scientists and experts in their field? What’s tough about selling out Canada’s resources to foreign interests? What’s tough about attacking the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court? What’s tough about reforming the Elections Act with a view to vote suppression? What’s tough about ignoring Canada’s First Nations? What’s tough about avoiding meetings with Canada’s provincial premiers? Etc. etc.

    Stephen Harper has proved emphatically the he is not a leader. That he is in fact a weak and fearful man who avoids complexity (the environment, federalism in Canada) and uses the tactics of a bully to intimidate the people around him,especially his caucus, and anyone who gets in his way.

    Leaders unite their people, Mr. Beardsley; Harper systematically divides them. Leaders are open to disagreement and opposition, the better to hear all sides before making a decision; Harper appears to listen only to himself.

    According to Preston Manning, who should know, Harper doesn’t think words are important. Consider the implications of that: Harper thinks he can say whatever he wants, whenever he wants, whether it is true or not. And you call him a leader?

  2. PS: Canadians are allergic to bullies, as they showed to great effect in the liberation of Holland 70 years ago. Harper’s day of reckoning will come, sooner or later.

  3. Well put P J Robertson. Harper is a control freak and the sooner he is stopped the better.

  4. So you’re not a fan of Dear Leader PJ?
    Pretty sure he and his party will be going down in flames in October. Ten years too late, but better than never.

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