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Guelphfirst





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Location: Guelph

PostPosted: Fri Apr 27, 2007 9:42 am    Post subject: British newspaper article Reply with quote

It is funny how it took someone in England to
put it into words...Sunday Telegraph Article
From today's UK wires: Salute to a brave
and modest nation -
Kevin Myers, The Sunday Telegraph LONDON -

Until the deaths of Canadian soldiers killed
in Afghanistan , probably almost no one outside
their home country had been aware that
Canadian troops are deployed in the region.
And as always, Canada will bury its dead,
just as the rest of the world, as always will forget
its sacrifice, just as it always forgets nearly
everything Canada ever does.

It seems that Canada 's historic mission
is to come to the selfless aid both of its friends
and of complete strangers, and then, once the
crisis is over, to be well and truly ignored.

Canada is the perpetual wallflower that stands
on the edge of the hall, waiting for someone to
come and ask her for a dance. A fire breaks
out, she risks life and limb to rescue her fellow
dance-goers, and suffers serious injuries.
But when the hall is repaired and the dancing
resumes, there is Canada, the wallflower still,
while those she once helped glamorously
cavort across the floor, blithely neglecting her
yet again.

That is the price Canada pays for sharing the
North American continent with the United States ,
and for being a selfless friend of Britain in
two global conflicts.
For much of the 20th century, Canada
was torn in two different directions:
It seemed to be a part of the old world,
yet had an address in the new one, and that
divided identity ensured that it never fully got
the gratitude it deserved.
Yet its purely voluntary contribution to the
cause of freedom in two world wars was
perhaps the greatest of any democracy.

Almost 10% of Canada 's entire population
of seven million people served in the armed
forces during the First World War, and nearly
60,000 died. The great Allied victories of 1918
were spearheaded by Canadian troops,
perhaps the most capable soldiers in
the entire British order of battle.

Canada was repaid for its enormous sacrifice
by downright neglect, it's unique contribution
to victory being absorbed into the popular
Memory as somehow or other the work of the "British."

The Second World War provided a re-run.
The Canadian navy began the war with a
half dozen vessels, and ended up policing
nearly half of the Atlantic against U-boat attack.
More than 120 Canadian warships participated
in the Normandy landings, during which 15,000
Canadian soldiers went ashore on D-Day alone.
Canada finished the war with the third-largest
navy and the fourth-largest air force in the world.

The world thanked Canada with the same sublime
indifference as it had the previous time.
Canadian participation in the war was
acknowledged in film only if it was necessary
to give an American actor a part in a campaign
in which the United States had clearly not
participated - a touching scrupulousness which,
of course, Hollywood has since abandoned,
as it has any notion of a separate Canadian
identity.

So it is a general rule that actors and
filmmakers arriving in Hollywood keep
their nationality - unless, that is, they are
Canadian.
Thus Mary Pickford, Walter Huston,
Donald Sutherland, Michael J. Fox, Howie Mandel,
William Shatner, Norman Jewison, David Cronenberg,
Alex Trebek, Art Linkletter and Dan Aykroyd
have in the popular perception become
American, and Christopher Plummer, British.

It is as if, in the very act of becoming famous,
a Canadian ceases to be Canadian,
unless she is Margaret Atwood, who is as
unshakably Canadian as a moose,
or Celine Dion, for whom Canada has
proved quite unable to find any takers.

Moreover, Canada is every bit as querulously
alert to the achievements of it's sons and
daughters as the rest of the world is
completely unaware of them.
The Canadians proudly say of themselves
and are unheard by anyone else -
that 1% of the world's population has
provided 10% of the world's peacekeeping forces.
Canadian soldiers in the past half century have
been the greatest peacekeepers on Earth - in
39 missions on UN mandates, and six on non-UN
peacekeeping duties, from
Vietnam to East Timor, from Sinai to Bosnia.

Yet the only foreign engagement that has
entered the popular on-Canadian imagination
was the sorry affair in Somalia , in which
out-of-control paratroopers murdered two
Somali infiltrators.
Their regiment was then disbanded in disgrace
- a uniquely Canadian act of self-abasement for
which, naturally, the Canadians received no
international credit.
So who today in the United States knows
about the stoic and selfless friendship its
northern neighbour has given it in Afghanistan?
Rather like Cyrano de Bergerac ,
Canada repeatedly does honourable things
for honourable motives, but instead of being
thanked for it, it remains something of a figure of fun.

It is the Canadian way, for which
Canadians should be proud, yet such honour
comes at a high cost. This past year more grieving
Canadian families knew that cost all too
tragically well.
FascistLibertarian





Joined: 23 Feb 2007
Posts: 1092
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votes: 14
Location: Ontario

PostPosted: Fri Apr 27, 2007 1:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

It is good that others remember the Canadian sacrafices.
One of the Hong Kong veterans (sorry I am always going ona bout HK, i find it super intresting part of our history) said this about why Canadians often dont remmeber.

"Why don't we hear more about it? Perhaps it's the Canadian way. There were no Audie Murphies in the Canadian Army."

I think that Canadians are starting to know more about our nations military history, a lot more books have been published in the last 20 years than there were published say 67-87.
mrsocko





Joined: 29 Oct 2006
Posts: 2463
Reputation: 131.2
votes: 8
Location: Southwestern Ontario

PostPosted: Sat Apr 28, 2007 10:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
Until the deaths of Canadian soldiers killed
in Afghanistan , probably almost no one outside
their home country had been aware that
Canadian troops are deployed in the region.
And as always, Canada will bury its dead,
just as the rest of the world, as always will forget
its sacrifice, just as it always forgets nearly
everything Canada ever does.


The Dutch certainly remember and commend us for our sacrifices in WW2.

Canada is the best country in the world. I bet if you asked people in other countries to name the best country in the world excluding their own, Canada would win. Canada is loved in the World while other nations are hated. They may forget what we do but they know who we are.

And because we don't blow our own horn or puff out our chests like the leaders of other nations, when we speak we are listened to especially with a great leader such as Harper to do the speaking.
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