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The grownups are back in charge in the US.

That feeling of mine got reinforced with Obama’s executive order that he was closing Guantanamo Bay within 1 year, but it got further reinforced today watching new US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton speaking to the State Department employees welcoming her arrival to the State Dept. on her first day on the job:

Embedded video from CNN Video

“13 Billion Reasons…and Counting”

That’s the name of a new Facebook group that has been started up by one of my former Liberal blogging colleagues.

Those who aren’t Liberal probably wont join it, as its premise at the end of its summary is that there are 13 billion reasons and counting to vote Liberal at the next election, but I liked his description of the group and why it was formed:

According to a report released by the Parliamentary Budget Office, the current projected deficit for 2009-10 is $13 billion. Over five years, the deficit is currently projected to be $46 billion. In three short years, “economist” Stephen Harper and the Conservative government […]

More signs of a return to the rule of law under Obama.

Talking Points Memo has just reported an Associated Press “breaking” story that a draft executive order has been readied for Obama that will close down Guantanamo Bay prison within 1 year. This of course would be good news if true, but we still need to see what Obama intends to do with the now suspended military commission show-trials.

That latter maneuver, by the way, removes the excuse reason Harper keeps using for not repatriating Khadr. You know, about the fact there is a “process” ongoing? Well, the process has been suspended. It would be good political capital for Harper to spend with the new Obama administration by repatriating Khadr. If […]

That’s change we believe in..

..and this happened even quicker then I thought it would:

Military prosecutors have requested a suspension of trials at Guantanamo Bay on orders from newly installed U.S. President Barack Obama, sources said late Tuesday. Obama requested a 120-day continuance in the trials through the Department of Defense, sources said. If his request is granted, it means the trials will be halted, presumably until Obama makes a decision on how they should be handled, the CBC’s Susan Ormiston reported from the U.S. army base in Cuba.

Actually, it’s not the complete suspension of them, just a 4 month adjournment, but one thinks that this is step one of Obama removing the […]

Update: So-called bombshell on Khadr/Arar is a bit of a bust.

I was talking yesterday evening about how then-Public Safety minister Stockwell Day saw the entire file the Americans had on Maher Arar, which almost assuredly contained the so-called revelations that Khadr identified Maher Arar in Afghanistan in an Al Quadea camp, and he obviously didn’t find them credible.

Now, Dr Dawg has updated his story today on this with this nice little find:

And the truth, always less startling than the lies it replaces, quickly comes out:

Khadr only “stated that (Arar) looked familiar” after he was shown a photograph of then [sic] Ottawa computer engineer.” Khadr, “in time . . . stated he felt he had seen” Arar, the […]

It’s only 25 minutes into the official start of Obama’s presidency..

… and I’m feeling more optimistic and hopeful already for America and its role in the world then I did the past 8 years. Hopefully that won’t be a short-lived feeling. .. but I still think the worst of Obama would still be way better then the best of Bush.

By the way.. kinda symbolic I thought of how America has been crippled and hobbled in the world by outgoing VP Dick Cheney coming in on a wheelchair. Nothing personal against him of course, but the manner and way in which he and Bush and their syncophants virtually shredded and ignored the Constitution as well as international law in the […]

Stockwell Day believed Maher Arar was/is innocent, despite Guantanamo revelations.

So, you’ve probably heard the revelations today from Guantanamo Bay by the prosecution’s first witness that not only was Omar Khadr happy to talk with them, but that he identified Maher Arar by name as being at an Afghanistan Al Queada prison camp. That of course has set off some of the frothy right-wingnuts into saying that we paid off a terrorist, and so on and so forth.

Impolitical has already mentioned how suspicious this looks – a last ditch attempt by the Bush administration to railroad Obama and his new administration not to do anything with the trials, when Obama has announced the Guantanamo gulag would close, and many […]

A deep thought on Harper and Omar Khadr

Ok, maybe not so deep, but as I read this morning that the pretrial hearing at Guantanamo for Omar Khadr is delayed yet again, with Obama already saying he will close Guantanamo Bay prison, and with many doubting Obama and his new administration will even go ahead with Khadr’s trial, I wonder if Stephen Harper, in a final display of pique, would try to refuse to repatriate Omar Khadr back into Canada if and when these events all occur, and if Obama and his administration request it of Harper.

We’ve already seen Harper was alone among Western nations in refusing to condemn the Bush-Cheney commissions process at Guantanamo Bay, and […]

True renewal or window dressing?

On this Sunday, just a brief comment about this announcement by Michael Ignatieff that there would be a renewal committee established by the Liberal party. It’s all well and good to establish a committee to renew the party, but this committee is comprised of the Liberal establishment as well as members of the Liberal caucus. I’ve no doubt they’re all qualified people, but if you want party renewal, shouldn’t you be at least putting on some actual grassroots members of the Liberal Party on this renewal committee – even a token one?

For example, why not appoint a member or 2 of the Young Liberals to this renewal committee?

[…]

Saturday Sonata

Just a couple of brief points this Saturday morning.. first, my blog and I have joined the new Liberals Online aggregator that has formed in the last week or 2. I’ve no intention of leaving Liblogs at this point – I think its perfectly fine to be on both, and I note a few other Liberal blogs that are on both aggregators. An alternative Liberal blogging site isn’t a bad thing to have, in my view. I just hope they manage to change the colour cheme of the thing 🙂

Second, it was with some amusement on my part that I noticed an email notice had been received to my […]

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