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Keeping the pressure on the Afghan detainees story

Just a thought on the Conservative government strategy to try and use the Christmas House of Commons break to make the Afghan detainees story “go away”:

There’s no doubt that with the House not sitting and Question Period not available for 7 weeks for the government to be grilled on this issue, it may be harder to keep the pressure on this government to reveal what it is hiding in the redacted documents and what it knew about what was going on with Afghan detainee transfers and whether it knew they were being tortured, and refused to listen to the soldiers reports coming from Afghanistan, or its diplomats such as Mr. COlvin.

The decision by the majority of the Afghanistan Committee to site this week helps, but for this story to continue, it will be up to the media – like the Globe’s Paul Koring – to keep digging for the truth. It is also up to those in the public service who are outraged at a government hiding or blacking documents – not for national security, but to save its political skin – to be “whistleblowers” in their own right – be that coming forward to testify, or more likely (to avoid retribution from a malicious government) by quietly leaking documents to the media to show what exactly this government has been hiding. We have seen some indications of that public service unrest on how this government has acted/reacted, as claimed by the Toronto Star’s Jim Travers on TV yesterday.

We can only hope that continues, and that the combination of the Afghan committee, the media, and the public service scandalized by this government’s blatant attempts to prevent political damage will keep the pressure up on this government.

As an aside, the Conservative government will resist to the bitter end launching a public inquiry, because they likely know what documents they have redacted will be politically embarrassing and damaging if revealed fully. That is why the other method at gaining those documents – Parliamentary supremacy in ordering all documents be turned over to Parliament needed to be taken, and why the Harper government is also risking censure and contempt charges against Parliament by calling into question the very notion of the power of Parliament by trying to resist handing these documents over. There obviously is much at stake for this government if they are resisting to the bitter end revealing what those documents show.

If it takes a Speaker’s Warrant to get those documents, and his authorization to send in the Seargant-At-Arms and/or the RCMP to collect those documents, so be it.

1 comment to Keeping the pressure on the Afghan detainees story

  • Big Winnie

    I do agree that htids issue needs to be kept in the forefront until such time that the docs are handed over or an inquiry is held. However, it was amusing yesterday watching Question Period to see Laurie “Get Real Folks” Hawn “huff and puff” over the detainee issue.

    I’m very real Hawn which is more than can be said about you!

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