Monday, April 03, 2006

Why didn't the flags come down?

According to a brief in 24 Hours today, no government flags were lowered to honour the Canadian soldiers that have died recently in Afghanistan.

If the Liberals were still in government and I was a Blogging Tory, I'd go on about how this shows typical Liberal disdain and disrespect for our soldiers. Since, however, the Liberals aren't in government, and since I'm neither a Tory nor an asshole, I'll just say I hope the government provides an explanation here and takes remedial action in the future.

As the article says, flags were lowered to honour fallen Canadian soldiers in Afghanistan under the previous Liberal government. I don't want to make this a political issue, all I'd like to know is why the change?

A fuller version of the CP article ran yesterday in the Toronto Sun:

Flag no longer lowered for dead

OTTAWA -- No government flags were lowered in honour of any of the three Canadian soldiers killed in Afghanistan since Prime Minister Stephen Harper took office in early February, government data shows.

An online government listing of ceremonial flag-lowerings at the Peace Tower and other federal buildings shows flags were not lowered to half-staff for Cpl. Paul Davis, Master Cpl. Timothy Wilson or Pte. Robert Costall, whose body was returned to Canada yesterday.

All three soldiers died last month in Afghanistan.

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Anonymous said...

If they start doing that, the flags will be down all the time...

Anonymous said...

Just to give a little more insight into this issue:

Cliff Chadderton, chairman of the National Council of Veteran Associations, which represents 55 veterans' groups, said it was a "mistake" to start the half-staffing in the first place. It unfairly distinguishes those who die in Afghanistan from those who have died in past wars, he said.

The memories of soldiers who have died in Afghanistan, he added, should be commemorated along with those of every other military death when the flag is lowered on Nov. 11, Remembrance Day.

Anonymous said...

...I've said this to many Tory bloggers...focus on political issues, add insight and debate...quit nit-picking on issues that remind most of us why we voted Conservative. There will be lots of 2 sided issues worth roasting CPC butts...but this one is just plain silly.

Jeff said...

I'm not roasting any butts gwilliam, I made that clear. I'm asking a question. And the issues I raise will be ones of interest to me that I care about, not ones designed for political advantage.

Jeff said...

Here's some more insight anon, from the same article:

Bob Butt, a national spokesman for the Royal Canadian Legion, said the Legion was initially opposed to the practice. But once the flag was lowered for the first Afghanistan casualties, that started a tradition that should continue, he said.

"If you do it for one, do it for all," he said. "You can't be selective."