The last word on Afghan detainees...
Terry Glavin has a really nice piece on the issue of Afghan detainees. He quotes from a CFRA interview with Can West reporter Matthew Fisher:
"I do not understand at all why this is such a huge debate. It must only be because the government gave the appearance of trying to hide something, but to the best of my knowledge, there is nothing to hide. . . Canadians have not been at war for decades, and there were some problems with the rules at the beginning. The Liberal government - and it was a Liberal government, not a Conservative government - put in place rules that perhaps were not as a effective as they could have been, but Canada responded at a very early stage to this, and new rules were put in place.But, please read the whole piece by Glavin and listen to the entire interview.
"If the International Committee of the Red Cross had complaints, right within the Geneva Conventions it says they must act without delay to prosecute to move forward on these cases. These allegations concern things that happened in 2006 and early 2007. If there is any substance to any of these charges, something would have happened by now. 'Without delay' means a few weeks or a few months. It doesn't mean a few years.
"I've spoken at great length to the Red Cross - I believe I'm the only Canadian journalist who has - in Kabul, with someone who has had a lot to do with this file. He said the Red Cross has no issues with Canada, or any other country for that matter, at this time.
"This person was also highly critical of the whistleblower Richard Colvin, who has been lionized in Canada, because he violated every rule that every government has with the Red Cross, which is to allow it to do its work freely, and to protect prisoners. It never discusses its affairs publicly, period, and they are extremely distressed, and they believe that Colvin harmed the prisoners and put them at risk by going public with these things.
"They have mechanisms to deal with this. I was told quite clearly, 'We do not deal with junior diplomats,' and despite the fact that he's described here as a senior diplomat, Richard Colvin is a very junior diplomat. They deal with either the chiefs of armed forces, with prime ministers and ministers of justice. When there are serious allegations they go to the highest level of authority in any government they can. All of this has been lost in the minutiae of emails.