Friday, November 26, 2010

Behind The Curtain?

Well this should be interesting. Wikileaks, the famous whistle-blower website, has promised the world that the next set of documents they are going to release this weekend will be a doozy! 

The Globe and Mail reports that the US has warned Ottawa that the contents of the leaked documents will be embarrassing for Canada. Embarrasing? hmmmm...

Specifically the article quotes the US Ambassador to Canada, David Jacobson, as follows:

                   “Most of the time, cables, whether it is here in Canada or elsewhere around the world, reflect the author’s personal opinions, and don’t represent the policies of the government of the United States,” Mr. Jacobson said. “But I will say this: These were documents that were meant to be private, and when they are put on the front page of a newspaper, that has impact.


                    “I was a lawyer for 30 years before I got here, and I have a lot of experience over the years of looking at documents that people send back to each other, perhaps on an informal basis. And oftentimes there’s, let’s call it locker-room conversation in them that probably they would rather not see on the front page of a newspaper,” he said. “I don’t know what’s in these, and I’m not going to comment about them, but that’s oftentimes the case.”
In other words, what you read in the news and in the official communiques is different from what is actually being said behind closed doors. Of course, we all know this. What is troubling is how scared everyone is. What is it exactly that they don't want us to find out? 
The article also says:
                      But the fear of real damage is accompanied by another concern in Ottawa – that snippets of private talk by U.S. diplomats might include sharp words that could stick in the mind of a Canadian public that is often sensitive to how they are seen in American eyes. Ottawa officials worry about references to a Canadian inferiority complex, biting criticisms or belittling comments.
This is a very strange passage. It hints that the journalist who wrote it has heard these worries expressed by officials in Ottawa. So, we are to understand the US regularly insults Canada, Canadians or Canadian officials in diplomatic cables? Also note the quote from Mr. Jacobson :
                     "And oftentimes there’s, let’s call it locker-room conversation in them that probably they would rather not see on the front page of a newspaper,”
Notice the use of the term "locker-room conversation" . When I hear that term, I immediately think of macho, high-testosterone, swear-word laced language. Language always gives you away.
It's clear to me that the US knows, at least partially, the content of the documents about to be leaked. Otherwise why the specific warnings to Canada? It's also clear that the Canadian government now also knows and is hiding it from the public. The fact they plastered this all over the Canadian news outlets is evidence they are trying to soften the blow they know is coming. It's funny what happens when you say one thing and do another.
I wouldn't be surprised if the speculation in the article is correct. That, indeed, the US bullied Canada into sending troops to Afghanistan and then into extending their stay there. This would be embarrassing now wouldn't it? The fact that Stephen Harper is willing to send young men and women, born in the most peace loving nation on earth, to die in a strange faraway land, that has done us no harm, because he was bullied into it by our southern neighbors would be VERY embarrassing. Some would go as far as to say it is treacherous.
I guess we will have to wait and see. I will be posting any updates on this matter asap.

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