I never liked the mission. I never liked the context. I never liked the propaganda. I never liked the transformation of some kind of Canada into this occupying Canada.
162 killed and 2,179 wounded? But here’s the very very hard question. Who is the government NOT counting? They are the people the government is actively disowning, to the shame of all of us.
I’ll tell you who some of them are:
They are the human casualties of our new flashy militarism:
- they are the veterans whose pensions have been replaced with lump sum payments
- they are the reservists who are easy for the government to neglect to track
- they are the thousands of veterans and families who can’t get help because of the insufficient few millions the government tosses their way
- they are those walking with PTSD and those who support them, or have their lives riddled with chaos because of it
- they are those who are abandoned because the government is too cheap to properly treat Canadian Forces members and veterans because the government prefers a privatized mercenary force it can wash its hands of when they are suddenly useless and a burden
- they are those who can’t cope and kill themselves, and all they leave behind
- they are the people with arbitrary and preventable trouble transitioning into civilian life, include those who have never been civilians since they were teens
- they are the caregivers who burn out because the government wants to give another tax cut to a corporation or a 1%er and must make the “tough choices” to cut back on care they know to be insufficient because of all the untreated people
Whether you agree with the politics or the mission or any of the controversial elements of this imperial escapade, when a government orders people to endure unimaginable things on behalf of the nation, a nation and a government with integrity will walk the responsibility talk and ensure we do everything we can to make people whole again.
But we are not because the Conservative government has no honour, and neither do we if we let them get away with this abuse and neglect.
The Minister of National Defence is the not-even-close-to-being Honourable Rob Nicholson. Email him this article here and demand that our government takes care of those whose lives they have altered.
The Minister of Veterans Affairs is the similarly not so Honourable Julian Fantino. Email him this article here and demand that his dishonourable government seeks honour and integrity by properly funding the needs of veterans.
More contact information:
The Honourable Robert Nicholson, Minister of National Defence
National Defence Headquarters
Major-General George R. Pearkes Building
TTY/TDD 1 800 467-9877 *
The Honourable Julian Fantino
Veterans Affairs Canada
66 Slater Street