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Thursday, September 23, 2004

There's something about sitting on a fence that Bill Graham enjoys

This morning's Ottawa Citizen:

"Canada should sign on to the U.S. government's ballistic missile defence shield for North America, Defence Minister Bill Graham said yesterday in the strongest indication to date that the Liberal government will support President George W. Bush's controversial plan.
'This is not Iraq, this is not an engagement somewhere else. This is about North America. I think it's very important for us to be associated in any program that deals with the defence of North America,' Mr. Graham told the Citizen."

This afternoon's Globe and Mail website:

"During a speech to Toronto's Royal Canadian Military Institute late Wednesday, Mr. Graham said ballistic missile defence might assist the government in its 'fundamental responsibility to protect Canadians' and stressed the need for Canada to 'maintain a close working relationship with our American neighbours.'
Mr. Graham denied reporter suggestions Thursday that those comments indicate that Canada has little choice but to join the program.
'There's no change in policy — we have a choice whether we join it or not,' Mr. Graham said after a cabinet meeting. 'What I said is that as Defence Minister, I'm in favour or pursuing those negotiations. It's exactly what I said in the House of Commons before when I was the Foreign Minister'."

Now I could be wrong, but I think Bill Graham is in favour of missile defense but doesn't want to appear as such. This ambiguity must drive the Americans nuts.

Posted by Paul Tuns on September 23, 2004 in Canadian Politics | Permalink


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Graham's history does not indicate that he would personally be in favor of such a defence program. To me it suggests that PM the PM has, from his recent visit to the US, realized just how low Canada's reputation is and wants to have the missile defence possibility publically floated to see if he can sign on without sinking his government. Whatever the reason, agreeing to cooperatively defend ourselves is long past due.

Posted by: Steve | 2004-09-23 11:02:19 PM

There is something about offering schoolyard slurs that other people enjoy.

Posted by: Ghost of a flea | 2004-09-24 7:19:01 AM

"There's something about sitting on a fence that Bill Graham enjoys"

No kidding. Guess where the fence post is?

Posted by: Sean | 2004-09-24 7:39:46 AM

Recently while visiting Cape Breton I toured Alexander Graham Bell exhibit and was impressed with his work in the hydro-foil. The machine was awesome, and to note with the diplay also was a newspaper clip during the 70's showing how the people reacted to the Navy funding of the craft of that time and trust being cancelled. Way to go it would appear any military spending is not allowed in Canada so why all the fuss about missile defense.

Posted by: Dex | 2004-09-24 12:02:13 PM

I suspect that Mr. Graham desires that, in the event of a missile shield working, it protect Canada as well.

Posted by: John Thacker | 2004-09-24 1:48:36 PM

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