“Canada”Trouble in Toryland: their Dirty Tricks catalogue Part Two

The other page was getting to long. I did try to keep it all there, but there is just too much information.

So I decided to make a part two and at the rate things are going I my need a part three or” four”.

So if you haven’t read Part  1 You should go through it first.

Part 1 also has the information on how to lodge a complaint.

“Canada”Trouble in Toryland: their Dirty Tricks catalogue Part 1

This is a very long story. It is turning into a book and seems maybe even a set of  Encyclopedia’s.

To my Readers, Canada is headed down the same path as the US, UK etc They are being stripped of their, rights and freedoms. Canada is quickly being turned into a police state. So if you have friends who are Canadian please forward this information to them. The working class have little time to watch the news or get all the details. As is it seems the Government has strives to hoodwink them, full well knowing few may have noticed. Help keep them informed.

Many Canadians cannot afford to be on-line many can’t even afford Cable or satellite, they to need to be informed. To all Canadians let those people know, their rights are being removed and their is a  problem with their new Government.

The beacon of light Canada once was, is slowly falling into a dark place.

March 7 2012

The Coservatives Asked Elections Canada for the list of Voters.

This has never been done before. So why would they do that?

What did they do with the list?

I also have to say I am impressed with the Canadian Press.

It is a rare thing for the Press in the US to do anything of this magnitude. They just go after the guy the Rich corporations or Lobby’s, want to have discredited.  One can on fantasize, of having press like this in the US.

Now for the new information they have found.

Voter identification ‘massive job,’ central Conservative campaign gives voter lists to local candidates

March 7 2012

A couple of Quotes from the story.

Mr. Vellacott, however, said the Conservative Party, with its massive computer data banks in Ottawa, centrally creates election-period voter lists for every election, including telephone numbers, for each of the individual candidate campaigns

The party lists, also used for the election last year, are based on updated Elections Canada voter lists that are released to all candidates and registered political parties after the election campaign period begins. The final revised list is sent out three days before an election.

The list Elections Canada distributes to parties and candidates on computer discs contain only names and addresses of voters, not phone numbers.

Elections Canada confirmed to The Hill Times on Tuesday that for the first time in a federal election a representative of one of the recognized parties, the Conservative Party, had before the election requested that the initial voter list given to the parties at the beginning of the campaign include the location of polling sites. In response, Elections Canada provided the information to the Conservative Party and the other recognized parties. Source

Note:

The Conservatives last week denied a request by Elections Canada for the power to demand receipts for political parties’ election spending, raising questions about why?

March 7 2012

A couple of Quotes from the story.

An NDP motion that calls on the government to make campaign call centres register with Elections Canada is expected to pass, with the Conservatives planning to vote in favour.

The motion is non-binding but gives opposition MPs the chance to speak at length about the need for such legislation, dredge up the so-called in-and-out scandal and tie it to the current controversy over fraudulent and harassing phone calls during the last federal election.

The NDP motion, to be debated Thursday, calls for the government to make three changes to the Elections Canada Act in the next six months:

  • Give Elections Canada stronger investigative powers, including the ability to force political parties to provide supporting documents for their expenses.
  • Require all telecommunication companies that provide voter contact services during a general election to register with Elections Canada.
  • Make telecommunication companies identify and verify the identity of election clients.

Be sure to watch the Video Source

MP Dean Del Mastro Said the conservative made about 6 million calls. Now that Costs a fortune. Now MP Dean Del Mastro has a hard time telling the truth, He hasn’t really told the truth, as of yet. I have watched many Videos and he just keeps fouling up,.That is being kind on my part. So his word means very little.

The Conservatives may have made more calls then the 6 million as MP Dean Del Mastro claims  Time will tell.

As the reporter said even at $1 a call, that is a lot of money. Well lets hope their receipts reluctant that number. $6 million just on phone calls.

The Liberals and NDP both will turn over all records, but the Conservatives have not committed to doing so.

Harper could have given more power already. So this is a rather pathetic move on his part. Non Binding is even more useless.

At another News site

Tories said should instead rest in the hands of private-sector compliance auditors hired by the parties.
So would Revenue Canada let the rest of it’s citizens hire a private Auditor to Audit their own Income taxes. I don’t think so. That is just a really foolish statement. Why then should Elections Canada Allow something like that.

Voting irregularities marred Toronto-area vote: CBC

A couple of Quotes from the story.

CBC says there was a late influx of unregistered voters, who got to vote without providing an address in the riding as required by Elections Canada rules. CBC says it discovered at least 2,700 applications for late registration to vote that failed to provide addresses, or gave false or non-residential addresses.

Volpe’s lawyer Tony Pascale told CBC he wants Elections Canada to revisit the riding. “There were an inordinately high number of voters registering who were not on the voters list in order to cast ballots,” he said.

Meanwhile, another former Liberal MP is mulling a legal challenge of the results of one of the closest races of the 2011 election, the Globe and Mail is reporting.

Incumbent Liberal MP Anthony Rota lost in the northern Ontario riding of Nipissing-Timiskaming by 18 votes to Conservative Jay Aspin.

The newspaper reports that Elections Canada is interviewing people who say they received automated phone calls directing them to the wrong polling station, as well as live phone calls from persons purporting to be from the Liberal party, but apparently trying to alienate voters. Source

 Opposition delays passage of controversial crime bill

Bill C-10, the Safe Streets and Communities Act

The NDP employed procedural delays following question period that left no more time for further debate and the final vote.

But before moving on to a series of votes on private members bills, the Conservatives did manage to pass a time allocation motion to limit debate on the bill to one more day. Source

Canadians do not want this bill however.

Critics argue the cost of Bill C-10 will be enormous, that it favours incarceration over rehabilitation and reintegration and that it will lead to prison overcrowding.

End destructive war on pot, panel urges Harper

Video: Student protests turn ugly in Montreal

Watch Video

Mar. 07, 2012
Riot police clashed with students protesting planned tuition-fee hikes Wednesday. University student Frank Levesque-Nicole says he was roughed up by police. Looks very much like the kids were not being violent.  Canada and the US are backwards. Many Countries across the ocean, have free Education in College and University for their children. Those countries are quite prosperous.

Such a shame to see Canada and the US lagging behind. They always have enough money for war however.

The student group CLASSE says Francis Grenier, a student at CEGEP St. Jerome was hit in the face with a stun grenade and may lose vision in his right eye. March 7, 2012

March 8 2010

The link below tells about yesterday and today protests.

One arrested in peaceful student demonstrations

More voters-list issues found in Toronto riding Video included

March 12 2012

Harper’s Libya victory ceremony cost soared to over $800,000

The price tag for a ceremony on Parliament Hill to celebrate Canada’s military mission in Libya was more than double the original agreed cost, prompting questions among some in uniform about whether approval was obtained for the increased spending, according to Defence Department documents obtained by the Ottawa Citizen. Source

Harper and his Celebrating Mass Murder is just sick.

Still no word on the cost, to bomb Libya back to the stone age.

What an absolute waste of money on both counts.

Former U.S. vice-president Dick Cheney has cancelled a Canadian speaking appearance due to security concerns sparked by demonstrations during a visit he made to Vancouver last fall, the event promoter said Monday.

Good on you Canadians. Protesting keeps out the war criminals. Good job.

Some actual good news. Cheney should be in prison.

3 Canadians accuse U.S. border guards of ‘molestation’

March 16 2012

There have been 700 calls to date that Elections Canada have investigate that are problematic. I imagine there will be more to come.

More than 700 ‘specific’ robocall election complaints

The story below has more on the 700 calls.

Misleading calls followed ID as non-Tories, voters.

Pattern of calls points to party’s voter identification database Video included Source

At least 100 arrests in violent Montreal protest Video Included. People were protesting against Police Violence.

To date they have found:

Registration forms with just a name on them.

Registration forms with fake addresses.

Robo calls From Elections Canada that are fraudulent, as Elections Canada does not call people.

These calls were made across Canada. Not just in Guelph.

They certainly have a lot of things to check out.

Seems the Harper Government is still not willing to turn over their records.

We have the In and Out Scam again.

Harper Gov. Contracted CGI to do work for Elections Canada.

The Governor General is from CGI as noted on Part 1.

“Pierre Poutine”  apparently has been found but to date his/her name has not been released.

Part 1 of all this just in case you haven’t been there yet.
Time for new Page Again.

Canada”Trouble in Toryland: their Dirty Tricks catalogue Part Three

Mining in Other Countries:

Canada is a mining behemoth. Canadian companies in the sector account for almost half the mining activities in the world, in 100 countries, according to the government.

A range of Canadian mining companies are associated with accusations of murder, rape, corruption, forced displacement, and environmental destruction, worldwide. This abuse continues precisely because Canada lacks corporate social responsibility standards Sorce

There are a number of Stories on Canada and other Countries.

Alberta Oil Sands a Pollution Nightmare

Save Local TV Stations in Canada

I rather like them myself.

People in Europe watch them even. Seems many enjoy the A Channel and CTV. So I am thinking anyone who watches and enjoys these stations could sign the petition or send a message in their defense.

Both CTV and A Channel are valuable assets to all Canadians and others around the world. They both provide excellent news coverage as well. I have used both as a source of information many times. Their reporting is very well done and reliable.  They are both terrific stations.

Many people who cannot afford satellite or cable watch them as well as a few other stations that one can get with rabbit ears or antenna.

Those who cannot afford either cable or satellite need them to stay informed, otherwise would have nothing to watch at all.

So I think they need to be saved.

They have been part of the community for years and have served it well.

So please take the time to help them out. This could happen to many local stations not just ‘A’  Channel now owned by CTV. By saving one you may be saving many local stations and also saving jobs as well.

A Channel has helped out charities like food banks, walks and runs for Cancer, plus numerous other charities as well.  We owe them a few minutes of our time to help them after all they have done for the community.

Please take time to drop a line to the politicians or sign the petition or both.
They support a very large community in many endeavors, we need to support them.  They are always there  to lend a helping hand, now they need you to help them.
Be sure to share. Sharing is a good thing you know.  Remember if you save one,  you may save many local stations across Canada.

Save Canadian TV.

Canadians Send a Message
I Love Local TV

They need our help.

Local TV is in crisis due to an unfair broadcast policy.

Cable and satellite companies are charging you to view ‘A’ Ottawa and they receive nothing.

Without a fairer system, one that sees broadcasters reasonably compensated for their programming without consumers having to pay an additional price, local television will be lost forever.

If you love local, it’s time for your voice to be heard. Email our political leaders or sign the petition below.

SIGN THE PETITION at http://www.petitiononline.com/saveltv/petition.html

For more information go to: savelocal.ctv.ca

For more than 50 years, CTV and ‘A’ have been proud to serve your community. They are leaders not only in the quality of our local news and programming, but also in their commitment to the community.

Cliquez ici pour voir la version française

Prime Minister’s Office:

pm@pm.gc.ca
JAMES MOORE – HERITAGE MINISTER:
Parliamentary email

Moore.J@parl.gc.ca
Constituency email

moorej@parl.gc.ca
CRTC:
Internet:
http://www.crtc.gc.ca

By Phone:
Toll-free: 1-877-249-CRTC (2782)
Outside Canada: 819-997-0313
Toll-free TTY line: 1-877-909-CRTC (2782)
Outside Canada: 819-994-0423
Media inquiries: 819-997-9403

By mail:
Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission
Ottawa, Ontario
Canada, K1A 0N2

By fax:
819-994-0218
LOCAL MEMBERS OF PARLIAMENT:
Ottawa West – Nepean

Baird.J@parl.gc.ca
Ottawa – Vanier

Belanger.M@parl.gc.ca
Ottawa Centre

Dewar.P@parl.gc.ca
Ottawa – Orléans

Galipeau.R@parl.gc.ca
Renfrew – Nipissing – Pembroke

Gallant.C@parl.gc.ca
Stormont – Dundas – South Glengarry

Lauzon.G@parl.gc.ca
Ottawa South

McGuinty.D@parl.gc.ca
Carleton – Mississippi Mills

OconnG@parl.gc.ca
Nepean – Carleton

Poilievre.P@parl.gc.ca
Lanark – Frontenac – Lennox
and Addington

Reid.S@parl.gc.ca

Sunday Jan 4 Reports: Protests in Canada against Attack in Gaza

Gaza attacks spark outcry

BEN LEMPHERS for Metro Edmonton

Hundreds of people gathered outside city hall in support of Palestine, calling for peace and justice. The well-attended, lively demonstration is in response to Israel’s escalating attacks on Gaza, which has claimed several civilian lives. Another gathering is planned for next Saturday.

Local protesters call for end to latest Middle East violence
By JEFF CUMMINGS
January 5 2009

Hundreds of protesters cheered, shouted and sometimes cried in front of city hall yesterday in an emotional rally calling for a ceasefire in Gaza.

Many were seen carrying signs, while others from Edmonton’s Islamic community were seen wearing Palestinian headscarves and waving Palestinian flags chanting, “Free, free Palestine.”

“This is not an equal war, not a self-defence act, it is a massacre,” read one sign.

Alaa Kadry, a co-organizer behind the large protest, says Israel’s actions against Gaza have affected a large number of families who live in Edmonton.

Some are still having a hard time trying to reach relatives caught in the war, he says.
“We have many families right now who are under siege,” said Kadry, a member of the Canadian-Palestine Cultural Association.

“This is a stand against aggression, against oppression, against all of the massacres that have taken place right now.”

Kadry says the attacks on Gaza are not self-defence, as what many in the international community are calling it.

Peggy Morton, a member with the Edmonton Coalition Against War and Racism, said another protest is being planned at city hall on Saturday and they will keep on protesting “as long as the attacks on Gaza take place.”

Similar protests were held in Toronto, Ottawa, and Vancouver with the largest rally seen in Montreal where thousands of flag-waving protesters flooded downtown streets.

Source

Thousands brave cold in Montreal to denounce Israeli offensive in Gaza

January 4 2009

MONTREAL – A peaceful, well-attended march denouncing the Israeli offensive in Gaza is snaking its way through downtown Montreal this afternoon.

Several thousand placard-toting, flag-waving protesters braved the bitter cold as Israel’s troops and military machinery continued their push into enemy territory.

Demonstrators of all ages gathered in a square on the western tip of Montreal’s downtown core before heading to the Israeli consulate, housed in an office tower just a stone’s throw away.

The march continued peacefully as demonstrators shouted slogans such as “Israel terrorist” and “Free Palestine.”

The Montreal march is the latest in a series of events this weekend across Canada.

Similar events were held Saturday in Ottawa, Vancouver and Toronto.

Mideast conflict sparks more protests in T.O.

January 04 2009

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Palestinian supporters in Toronto are planning more protests to urge the Canadian government to speak up against Israel’s escalating military action on the Gaza Strip.

On Saturday, thousands of people gathered outside the Israeli consulate on Bloor Street to voice their concern about the violence which has resulted in the deaths of hundreds of Palestinians.

The conflict began on Dec. 27, with Israel saying it would no longer tolerate rocket attacks from Hamas on its border towns — attacks that had intensified after the end of a truce agreement.

Rafeef Ziadah, spokesperson for the Palestine House in Toronto, called Israel’s response a disproportionate use of force.

“This is not self-defence,” she said. “Civilians are the ones being killed today.”

The Palestine House organized Saturday’s rally and Ziadah said more protests are being planned as the organization is watching developments in the Middle East closely.

Saturday’s protest was one of many held by Arab communities around the world.

Meanwhile, supporters of Israel are planning their own rally in Toronto. A rally is being planned for Thursday night to show solidarity with the military and their fight against Hamas.

Meir Weinstein, with the Jewish Defence League, says Israel has a right to defend itself from rocket attacks aimed at Israeli civilians.

“What the Jewish government is doing is ordering the Israeli Defence Force to finally take action against those sending rockets to Israel,” he told CTV Toronto. “What does a decent person expect to do? This is not a game.”

Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert said Sunday that Israel would protect its civilians from rocket attacks, which continued throughout the air assault.

“This morning I can look every one of you in the eyes and say the government did everything before deciding to go ahead with the operation,” Olmert said.

Israeli officials have said they do not intend to occupy the Gaza Strip and have been clear that the goal is to stop rocket attacks.

However, the ground offensive would not be “a rapid one that would end in hours or a few days,” warned one senior military officer, who asked not be named.

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas called the ground offensive “brutal aggression,” and reached out to his rivals in Hamas, which controls the Gaza Strip.

In response to the troop movement, Hamas officials said Gaza would become a “graveyard” for Israeli soldiers.

“You entered like rats,” Hamas spokesman Ismail Radwan said in a statement on Hamas’ Al Aqsa TV. “Gaza will be a graveyard for you, God willing.”

Protesters came out in Toronto on Sunday, Dec. 28, 2008 to denounce the Israeli military action in the Gaza Strip and show solidarity with the Palestinian people. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Colin Perkel)

Source

Protests Sunday Jan 4

SundayJan 4 Reports: US protests against Attack in Gaza

SundayJan 4 Reports: Protests around the World Against Gaza assault

Protests Sat Jan 3

Saturday Jan 3 Reports:US protests against Israels attacks on Gaza

Saturday Jan 3 Reports:Canadian Protesters march in support of Palestinians

Saturday Reports on: Demonstrations Against Israels attacks on Gaza, January 3, 2009

Friday Jan 2 Reports:Muslims around the world protest Gaza assault

December Reports

December 29 Reports:Global protests against Israel

Published in: on January 5, 2009 at 8:00 am  Comments Off on Sunday Jan 4 Reports: Protests in Canada against Attack in Gaza  
Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Saturday Jan 3 Reports:Canadian Protesters march in support of Palestinians

New Reports  for Sundays protests at the bottom of page.

January 4 2009

In Toronto

COLIN MCCONNELL/TORONTO STAR
Protesters march up Yonge St. to voice their displeasure with Israel’s incursion into Gaza. (Jan, 3, 2009)

As Israeli troops entered the Gaza strip, thousands of pro-Palestinian demonstrators stopped traffic along Yonge St. between Dundas and Bloor Sts. for a march condemning the Israeli action this afternoon.

Police on horseback and bicycles worked to control the crowd as it marched northwards, but as of 3 p.m., the protest has been peaceful.

“No one is as angry as I am. I have lost my entire family to the Israeli apartheid,” Rafeef Ziadah, spokesperson for Palestine House, told the crowd. “Stop the attack on Gaza.”

Chanting “free, free Palestine” and “from Iraq to Palestine, occupation is a crime”, protestors marched from Dundas Square to the Israeli consulate at Yonge and Bloor Sts.

About 200 counter-protestors were also in attendance to show their support for Israel’s incursions into the Gaza strip.

“We support the Israeli government’s efforts to stop Hamas, stop terrorism and stop terrorist infrastructure,” said Meir Weinstein, national director of the Jewish Defence League in Canada.

“Only this will bring stability to the region.”

Source

In Ottawa


Protestors Denounce Israeli Offensive

With no end in sight to the back-and-forth attacks between Israel and the Hamas in the Gaza Strip, voices are being raised around the world against the attacks that have already claimed hundreds of lives.

On Saturday, around a thousand demonstrators gathered in Ottawa, demanding an immediate ceasefire. They say Israel has launched an unprecedented wave of attacks. By raising their voices now, they hope to save the lives of countless Palestinian women, children and men caught in the bloody crossfire.

The protestors carried stretchers to the Israeli embassy on O’Connor Street and laid the symbolic causalities at Israel’s doorstep. Carrying Palestinian flags, they called on the Canadian government to denounce the attacks and press for an immediate ceasefire.

The demonstration came just as military officials in Jerusalem confirmed that Israeli ground forces, amassed for days on the Gaza border, had started moving into the region. The ground incursion had been widely expected after a heavy barrage of artillery strikes from Israeli gunboats and warships.

The United Nations says at least 433 Palestinians have been killed since the Israeli offensive started eight days ago. More than 2,000 have been injured and the U.N. says at least a quarter of them are civilians. Four Israelis have been killed by Hamas rocket attacks.

Source

Protesters in several Canadian cities waved placards and Palestinian flags Saturday as they angrily denounced the ongoing Israeli offensive in Gaza, just as word emerged that Israel’s troops and tanks had moved into enemy territory.

Following on the heels of angry protests taking place in cities across Europe, the Canadian show of solidarity began in the nation’s capital with more than 500 demonstrators braving chill winds on the steps of Parliament Hill.

The group made its way to the Israeli and U.S. embassies in Ottawa, as did a gathering of several thousand people in Toronto who at one point faced off against a smaller group of pro-Israel demonstrators in a downtown public square.

The noisy but peaceful gathering on Parliament Hill erupted with cries of “shame” when a speaker delivered the news Israel had begun its ground assault.

“Regardless what they say in this building (House of Commons), regardless what they say in Washington or the Hague, these are war crimes,” shouted Robert Assaly, an Anglican priest from Montreal who was a speaker at the rally.

At the height of the protest, military officials in Jerusalem confirmed that Israeli ground forces, amassed for days on the Gaza border, had started moving into the region.

The ground incursion had been widely expected in the wake of a heavy barrage of artillery strikes from Israeli gunboats and warships that was hammering the region Saturday.

Organizers at the invective-charged Toronto rally opted not to announce the news for fear it would stoke additional anger.

“This will have huge implications,” said Ali Mallah of the Canadian-Arab Federation.

“It will widen the wedge toward more war, more violence and more people to be killed. It’s a shame that we just entered a new year … to start with war and killing in the Middle East.”

In addition to the Ottawa and Toronto protests, events were scheduled for Montreal and Vancouver.

Braving -19 C wind-chill temperatures, the Ottawa rally denounced what they called Israeli atrocities against the 1.5 million residents of Gaza.

It included many self-identified Palestinian-Canadians, as well as a smattering of Jewish-Canadians opposed to Israel’s policies in Gaza and the West Bank, union activists and civil rights advocates.

Israel has said it is acting in self-defence in response to continuous firing of rockets from Gaza into Jewish towns.

But the demonstrators dismissed that defence, calling the rockets a minor provocation that don’t excuse the killing of over 400 Palestinians.

Toronto police – including several on horseback – formed a barrier between the impassioned masses of Palestine supporters and the scores waving Israeli flags as the protest forced the closure of a typically busy portion of Yonge Street.

“(The violence) devastated me and my family,” said Suraya Aburaneh, 21. “We can’t do much, but we’re here in Canada and the best we can do is spread awareness.”

Interrupting her was her nine-year-old cousin Dina, who shouted: “We can’t let people die like this!”

“We just need peace in this world, no killing. Both sides,” said Sumbul Raza, 34, as she marched and led chants of, “Shame, shame Israel.”

Across police lines, a group organized by the Jewish Defense League held a counter-demonstration.

“I want them to have their own country, I want them to have democracy,” said Ravid Dahan, 28, who moved to Canada from Israel two years ago.

“I want my children to go to school with their children. But they don’t believe I exist.”

Jill Aharon, 51, from Thornhill, added peace could come easily: “If they lay down their rockets, there will be no more death,” she said.

Tens of thousands of people also demonstrated across Europe on Saturday, including protesters who hurled shoes at the tall iron gates outside the British prime minister’s residence in London.

Protests in Paris, Rome, Berlin and many other European cities also drew thousands.

Israel says it is responding to rockets fired from Gaza by the Hamas militant group. Four Israelis also have been killed in the week of violence.

The Israeli air strikes have badly damaged Gaza’s infrastructure, knocking out power and water in many areas and raising fears of humanitarian disaster.

Source

Flames rise from the rubble of senior Hamas militant Nizal Rayan's house after an Israeli airstrike hit a nearby mosque in Jebaliya refugee camp, northern Gaza Strip, Friday, Jan. 2, 2009. (AP / Hatem Moussa)

Flames rise from the rubble of senior Hamas militant Nizar Rayan’s house after an Israeli airstrike hit a nearby mosque in Jebaliya refugee camp, northern Gaza Strip, Friday, Jan. 2, 2009. (AP / Hatem Moussa)

Israeli army armoured vehicles are seen at a staging area outside the Gaza Strip, Friday, Jan. 2, 2009. (AP / Sebastian Scheiner)

Israeli army armoured vehicles are seen at a staging area outside the Gaza Strip, Friday, Jan. 2, 2009. (AP / Sebastian Scheiner)

Smoke trails from rockets fired by Palestinian militants from the northern Gaza Strip towards an Israeli target are seen Friday, Jan. 2, 2009. (AP / Bernat Armangue)

Smoke trails from rockets fired by Palestinian militants from the northern Gaza Strip towards an Israeli target are seen Friday, Jan. 2, 2009. (AP / Bernat Armangue)

Palestinian Hamas supporters chant slogans during a protest against Israel's military operation in Gaza, in the West Bank city of Ramallah, Friday, Jan. 2, 2009. (AP / Nasser Shiyoukhi)

Palestinian Hamas supporters chant slogans during a protest against Israel’s military operation in Gaza, in the West Bank city of Ramallah, Friday, Jan. 2, 2009. (AP / Nasser Shiyoukhi)

Israel continues assault, despite worldwide protests
January 2 2009

A series of worldwide protests and continued calls from international leaders for a ceasefire were not enough to stop the ongoing conflict in Gaza, as Israel continued its week-long assault on Hamas targets throughout Friday.

One of the buildings destroyed in the latest airstrikes was a mosque that Israel claimed was being used to store weapons.

Some 20 houses were also targeted in Gaza on Friday, though Israel says it phoned ahead to warn those inside. The homes of more than a dozen Hamas leaders were reportedly destroyed in the raids.

Israeli planes also dropped leaflets for people to call in the locations of rocket squads, though it appeared that few people took up the initiative.

Nizar Kaddah, a Palestinian-Canadian who moved with his family to Gaza for a job, told CTV Newsnet that the bombings have made life “very difficult and miserable” for the people on the ground.

“I can hear from my home bombs everywhere, you know, especially at night,” he said in a phone interview from his Gaza City home.

“They usually start bombing after, like, midnight until the early hours in the morning. It is very difficult and miserable in here.”

Kaddah also said it has been hard for his family to get access to food and basic supplies.

Humanitarian issues

The United Nations said that a humanitarian crisis is developing as the conflict continues.

UN humanitarian coordinator Maxwell Gaylard said 2,000 people have been wounded so far and that there is “a critical emergency right now in the Gaza Strip.”

Israel has said it is doing what it can to limit civilian casualties and that it has increased shipments of supplies to Gaza.

On Friday, Israel also allowed about 300 Palestinians with foreign passports to leave Gaza.

One Hamas leader said the Israeli-led attacks would not go unpunished.

“The Palestinian resistance will not forget and will not forgive,” said Hamas legislator Mushir Masri. “The resistance’s response will be very painful.”

Thirty rockets, many heavier than those used in previous days, were launched from inside Gaza at Israeli targets on Friday.

Hamas also said it would retaliate against the death of Nizar Rayan — a senior Hamas leader who was killed by a one-ton bomb that also killed 18 others, including 13 members of Rayan’s family on Thursday.

There were also indications Friday that Israel could soon expand its military operation with a ground incursion into Gaza.

An estimated 400 people have been killed in Gaza during the week-long conflict. Three Israeli civilians and one soldier have also been reported dead.

Tens of thousands stage worldwide demonstrations

Tens of thousands of people held anti-conflict protests across the globe on Friday, calling for their local governments to bring sanctions against Israel and for the fighting to come to an end.

In London, several celebrities — including former Eurythmics singer Annie Lennox and Bianca Jagger — voiced their opposition to the conflict and called for Israel to halt its assault on Gaza.

A large protest in Bern, Switzerland, saw hundreds of marchers calling for both a ceasefire and sanctions to be brought against Israel.

Thirty-seven people were detained in Moscow after protesting the conflict outside the city’s Israeli Embassy.

About 6,000 people chanted “Death to Israel” and “Death to America” in Tehran, Iran.

Iran’s foreign minister, Manouchhehr Mottaki, said that if Israel launches a ground raid on Gaza it will be “the biggest mistake of the Zionist regime.”

Egyptian officials sent hundreds of riot police to a Cairo mosque to keep protesters away and police arrested 40 members of the Muslim Brotherhood opposition group. Another 3,000 pro-Gaza supporters marched in the northern Sinai city of el-Arish.

Some 30,000 Jordanians made their support for Gaza known at a stadium in Amman, and 10,000-plus Muslims marched through Jakarta, Indonesia aiming fake missiles at the city’s U.S. Embassy that were labeled “Target: Tel Aviv, Israel.”

Similar anti-Israel protests took place in the capital cities of Afghanistan and the Philippines, as well as in several Turkish cities and in Damascus, Syria.

Syrian President Bashar Assad reportedly spoke with UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon on Friday and asked for the UN Security Council to adopt a resolution to force Israel to immediate stop its military actions in Gaza.

In Nairobi, Kenya, hundreds of Muslims held a rally at a central mosque. Many chanted for their government to cut off its ties with Israel.

In Sudan, thousands of protesters marched through Khartoum making anti-Israeli and anti-U.S. statements.

Continued calls for a ceasefire

On Friday, Israeli leaders also remained cool to calls for a ceasefire.

French president Nicolas Sarkozy is expected to push for a cessation of fighting when he visits the region next week. Meanwhile, U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice says she has no plans to make a similar trip.

“Hamas has held the people of Gaza hostage ever since their illegal coup against the forces of President Mahmoud Abbas,” she said.

She said the United States wants to see a “durable and sustainable” ceasefire.

Democratically-elected Hamas seized control of Gaza from Abbas’ Fatah forces in 2007. Abbas then set up a rival government in the West Bank.

Meanwhile, here in Canada, Liberal foreign affairs critic Bryon Wilfert called on all sides of the dispute to halt the violence so that desperately needed aid can reach the residents of Gaza.

“Canada wants to have a situation where both sides end the hostilities. A permanent ceasefire needs to be put in place,” Wilfert told CTV Newsnet on Friday.

Foreign Affairs Minister Lawrence Cannon has previously urged for the two sides to work towards a ceasefire and for “Israeli and Palestinian leaders to remain committed to finding a comprehensive peace settlement.”

Christopher Gunness, a United Nations Relief Works Agency spokesperson, said some aid has made it through in the last day. But he added that with each bomb that Israel drops, the situation worsens for children and families.

“Today, we got 63 trucks into Gaza … as each bomb drops in Gaza so does the humanitarian crisis increase,” Gunness said.

“We are struggling. We are working amidst the most awful, volatile security situation.”

He said that so far aid organizations have only been able to get some fuel and food into bombed territory. He also noted that the medical situation is so desperate in Gaza that people with limbs blown off are being turned away because of a lack of supplies.

“If your foot is shot off — and it’s not life-threatening — you’ll be sent home,” he said.

Source

From Montreal

Unnerved by Israel’s latest deadly assault on Gaza, a handful of Jewish and Palestinian Montrealers rallied downtown Friday to denounce the week-long attacks that so far have left more than 400 people dead.

Members of the Coalition against Israeli Apartheid and another group calling for Palestinian and Jewish unity gathered in bitter cold for a brief protest vigil at noon at the corner of St. Catherine St. and McGill College.

Waving placards that read “Save Gaza”, and carrying banners calling for “An End to Israeli Apartheid,” the two dozen or so demonstrators were almost outnumbered by reporters and television crews dispatched to cover the rally on a slow news day.

With Israeli troops and tanks massing along the border with Gaza in preparation for what appears to be a massive ground invasion, organizers say bigger demonstrations are planned for Montreal in the weeks ahead to show solidarity with innocent civilians in Gaza who are ”suffering under bombardment.”

Laith Marouf, national chapter co-ordinator for Solidarity for Palestinian Human Rights, said the demonstrators are also upset with Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s “callous attitude in support of the Israeli action.”

Bruce Katz, a spokesperson for Palestinian and Jewish Unity said although this afternoon’s demonstration was small, it represents “the ongoing battle for the hearts and minds of public opinion,” for a humanitarian solution to the conflict in the Middle East.

“The liberation of Palestine, of people who have been kicked around for 60 years, and the liberation of Jews from Zionism go hand in hand,” Katz said. “You can’t have one without the other.

“No one should ever be a slave to any state, including the State of Israel,” he said.

Another protest demonstration against Israel planned for Sunday will begin at 1 p.m. at Cabot Square, outside the AMC Forum. And another similar rally is planned for Jan. 10.

Source

There is also an event scheduled  in Vancouver in the near Future as well.

Photos From Gaza


If you can’t get out to protest, you can  sign the Petitions at the page below. Take Action now.

Actions we can take to help Palestinians in Gaza

From the American Media

As Diplomacy Fails To Halt Israeli Offensive, Protestors Lash Out Against Both Attacks On Hamas, Palestinian Rockets

(CBS/AP) Protests against Israel’s airstrikes on Gaza continued around the world, as calls for a ceasefire were raised – along with cries for revenge.

Meanwhile, thousands of Jews and Christians are expected at demonstrations to be held this weekend in New York, London, Toronto, Miami, Washington, Los Angeles and Tel Aviv to protest Hamas’ rocket attacks from Gaza.

Some activists are billing the demonstrations as counter-rallies against what they call “assemblies of hatred for Jews and Israel.”

Sunday’s protest in Miami, to be held at the Holocaust Memorial, is billed as the Rally For Israel to Destroy Hamas.

The protests are ramping up as Israel’s bombardment of the Gaza Strip enters its second week, with warplanes and gunboats blasting more than two dozen Hamas positions Saturday.

“We will do all that is necessary to provide a different reality for southern Israel, which has been under constant attacks for the past eight years,” Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni told Channel 2 TV.

The complexity of protesting military strikes in Gaza was recognized as far away from the Middle East as Sioux Falls, S.D., where about 50 people gathered in 16-degree weather Friday near the Islamic Center to denounce U.S. aid to Israel, saying Israel’s actions have killed civilians.

Protester Mohamed Sharif of Sioux Falls said they want an immediate cease-fire and humanitarian aid to the people living in Gaza.

“People are being deprived of their necessities, water and medicine and food and clothes. Now they’re being killed. This is what we’re opposing, the killing of civilians,” Sharif said.

South Dakota Peace and Justice Center director Deb McIntyre attended the rally and said the U.S. shouldn’t pay for Israel’s militarism.

The issue is more complex, others said.

“Certainly, the protesters in Sioux Falls have a legitimate complaint about the Israeli attacks,” said Kurt Hackemer, a University of South Dakota history professor. “But the flip side is the Israelis have been taking rocket fire from Hamas for months now. There have been Israeli deaths and casualties.”

The bitter divide was evident across the globe.

In Lebanon Saturday, hundreds gathered outside the United Nations compound in Beirut, carrying flags and banners supporting the Palestinian Islamic Jihad movement.

Palestinians in Lebanon have been protesting for the past eight days to show their solidarity with the people of Gaza.

A number of Hezbollah lawmakers and supporters also took part in Saturday’s protest.

(Hundreds of shoes lie in the street after protesters attempted to throw shoes into Downing Street in London, Jan. 3, 2009. Thousands voiced their anger at the bombing of Gaza in a series of rallies across the U.K, Saturday.)

The Head of Hezbollah’s political bureau, Mahmoud Qomati vowed that Hamas’ response to the Israeli military offensive will be similar to that of Hezbollah during Israel’s war on Lebanon in the summer of 2006.

“The resistance in Gaza is preparing surprises for the Israeli enemy,” said Qomati, who promised Israelis “will be surprised in Gaza with a fierce, brave, and heroic confrontation which will lead to their defeat, God willing.”

Police in Berlin said about 2,000 protestors marched with banners and Palestinian flags from Adenauer Platz to Wittenbergplatz. Protestors chanted “Stop the child murder at Palestine” and “Stop the blockade at Palestine.”

Protestor Achmed Otur said Israel’s policy with the Palestinians “just creates distrust between East and West, between Muslims and Christians and Jews. It only divides and all trust is destroyed in this kind of world.”

While international pressure for a ceasefire has been growing, protestor Malik Hamudsaid said, “We only see conferences talking about fighting terrorism one day. Is this how one fights terror, by slaughtering people and by saying you are not allowed to do something? Terror is when you spread fear and terror among the civilians, and what Israel is doing is pure terror.”

In The Netherlands, thousands of people marched through Amsterdam, criticizing both the Israeli attacks and the Dutch government’s failure to condemn them. One banner declared: “Anne Frank is turning in her grave.”

Barbed Wire And Skulls

In Bogota, Colombia, demonstrators walking through the streets set fire to self-styled Israeli and U.S. flags, complete with drawings of barbed wire and skulls.

Ali Nofal, a protester of Palestinian origin participating at the rally in the Colombian capital, said that an end to the Gaza conflict is in the hands of the Israeli government, “because we, the Palestinian people, have nothing to say to this policy of aggression. The entire world and the U.N. Council have the way to end this, the Western world has the way to end the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.”

In Cyprus, 2,000 demonstrators, including Palestinians and Greek and Turkish Cypriots, converged Saturday in the center of the Cypriot capital of Nicosia. It was the largest protest on the Mediterranean island so far on the issue of Gaza.

The peaceful rally turned violent when some protesters tried to pull away barbed wire and break through a line of riot police blocking a road leading to the Israeli embassy.

Pro-Palestinian demonstrators pelted Cypriot riot police with rocks, sticks, shoes and oranges.

The demonstrators eventually stopped and dispersed after protest leaders pleaded with them to stop.

In Athens, however, a protest march turned violent, as protesters threw stones and fire bombs at riot police, who retaliated with tear gas and stun grenades.

An estimated 5,000 protesters marched from the city center to the Israeli embassy on Saturday. Police cordoned off the embassy.

Most of the protesters were Palestinians but leftist organizations and union members also joined in. Outside the embassy, anarchist youths joined the fray, targeting Greek police rather than the embassy. An Israeli flag was burned by demonstrators.

Some protesters also threw stones at the U.S. embassy without causing damage.

In Jakarta, hundreds of Indonesians from various Muslim groups staged a protest in front of the U.S. embassy on Saturday to voice their concern over Israel’s military offensive on Gaza.

The protesters demanded the U.S stop their support of Israel and called for solidarity among Muslim brothers within Indonesia.

Jeje Zainuddin, a Muslim youth group leader, said, “I think all the nations agree that what Israel has done is inhuman, but the problem is, will the international community dare to condemn Israel’s actions?”

“We still hope that the United Nations and America will get involved in the process, because this is not just about Muslims, it’s about universal human rights,” Zainuddin said.

At a protest yesterday outside Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s Calgary constituency office, demonstrators compared Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert to Adolph Hitler.

Muslim Council of Calgary chairman Nagah Hage denounced Olmert as a Nazi for what he called the “barbaric” bombing of Gaza, and said Harper’s support for Israel makes him complicit in the Gaza bloodbath.

A lone counter-demonstrator defending Israel’s right to stop Hamas rocket attacks was cursed by the crowd.

More Throwing Of Shoes

In London, several thousand people, many carrying Palestinian flags, marched past Prime Minister Gordon Brown’s Downing Street residence to a rally in Trafalgar Square. Outside Downing Street, hundreds of protesters stopped and threw shoes at the tall iron gates blocking entry to the narrow road.

Shoe-throwing has become a popular gesture of protest and contempt since an Iraqi journalist pelted U.S. President George W. Bush with a pair of brogues in Baghdad last month.

Among the London marchers were activist Bianca Jagger, ex-Eurythmics singer Annie Lennox and comedian Alexei Sayle.

“As a Jew, it’s very moving to see so many people who are so outraged at Israel’s actions,” Sayle said. “Israel is a democratic country that is behaving like a terrorist organization.”

Rallies were being held in other British cities, including Manchester, Liverpool and Glasgow.

Outside the Israeli Embassy tempers flared, as protestors threw a barrier at police.

The clashes began after a small group of protesters stormed a barrier that had been penning them in. Riot police were brought in to control the crowds and demonstrators were seen being handcuffed and taken away by officers as they tried to clear the street.

Several protesters left the scene with bloodied faces, according to a reporter from the Press Association.

Brown’s office said Saturday the British leader had phoned Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert and called for an immediate ceasefire.

“Rocket attacks from Hamas must stop, and we have called for a halt to Israeli military action in Gaza,” a spokesman said, on condition of anonymity in line with government policy. “Too many have died and we need space to get humanitarian supplies to those who need them.”

President George W. Bush has declined to criticize Israel, branding Hamas rocket fire an “act of terror.” But he has joined other world leaders in calling for an internationally monitored truce.

U.N. chief Ban Ki-moon also has backed a cease-fire, and French President Nicolas Sarkozy is due to visit the region next week as part of a diplomatic push to stop the violence.

Source

World Reports on: Demonstrations Against Israels attacks on Gaza, January 3, 2009

The History Behind Gaza Conflict

CBS Evening News: Renewed Fighting Between Israel And Hamas Has Long Back Story

CBS) In many ways, the conflict between Israel and Hamas was inevitable — ever since Hamas took control of Gaza from moderate Palestinian forces 18 months ago. CBS News Correspondent Sheila MacVicar reports.


Tens of thousands in the Muslim world protested Israel’s continuing bombardment in Gaza and chanted, “Down with Israel.”

In Cairo, where the Egyptian government had been key in brokering the now-collapsed ceasefire, people called for an end to cooperation with Israel.

If history has shown us anything, getting any cooperation over Gaza has been nearly impossible, reports CBS News correspondent Sheila MacVicar.

Thirty miles long, at most ten miles wide, and twice the size of Washington D.C., Gaza is one of the world’s most densely populated places.

It was ruled by Egypt until captured in the 1967 War. Gaza was occupied by Israeli soldiers until three years ago.

When Israel unilaterally withdrew, it left behind a vacuum filled by Hamas, the Islamist group which does not recognize Israel’s right to exist. Hamas is now the elected leadership of Gaza.

“The Israelis, as far as they’re concerned, what they face with Palestinian resistance and in particular from Hamas, is in their book no different than what the United States faces from al Qaeda,” said Rosemary Hollis, a Middle East expert at City University London.

Since 2005, Hamas militants and their allies have launched more than 6,000 rockets at Israeli targets. Ten people have been killed.

As candidate Barack Obama discovered when he toured the frequently hit Israeli town of Sderot last summer, however crudely ineffective the attacks, people did live in fear.

“If somebody was sending rockets into my house where my two daughters sleep at night, I’m going to do everything in my power to stop that,” Obama said on July 23.

But the violence was not one-sided. Israel carried out targeted killings. And more importantly for the people of Gaza, it imposed and tightened an economic blockade that cut off supplies of food, medicine, and even electricity.

The theory was that would encourage Palestinians to reject Hamas. It didn’t work.

Unwilling to talk to Hamas, with Israeli elections coming soon and no serious prospects for peace, Israel did what it has done before and vows to continue.

Source

Well that is a very short sighted  History if you ask me. There is so much more that people should be told of what is happening in Gaza. One must go back to 1946 and  before and for sure after. What happened after 1946 is what most do not seem to know anything about.

It seems most of  what happened is not known by most who think Israel is right in murdering innocent people in Gaza.

So one has to wonder who is the thief that stole their country? Who helped them? If you don’t know then find out before you allow Israel condemn those in Gaza.

This is now Called for the most part Israel but it was once Palestine.

palistine-1946

If Hamas Did Not Exist

Ontario man’s Gaza trip an extended nightmare, he is trapped in Gaza

Israel ‘rammed’ medical aid boat headed to Gaza

Leaders Lie, Civilians Die, Israelis-Palestinians

US Veto Blocks UN Anti-Israel Resolution

Israel Used Internationally Banned Weaponry in Massive Airstrikes Across Gaza Strip

Iran preps humanitarian aid ship to Gaza Strip

Israel’s ‘Crimes Against Humanity’

Gaza Families Eat Grass as Israel Blocks Food Aid

Israel Responsible for Genocide by Starvation in Gaza

Israel blocks foreign media from Gaza

U.N.: Israel won’t allow food aid to enter Gaza

Israeli violations of Lebanese sovereignty

*********************************************************

Saturday Jan 3 Reports:US protests against Israels attacks on Gaza

Saturday Reports:Reports on: Demonstrations Against Israels attacks on Gaza, January 3, 2009 London Paris etc

Friday Jan 2 Reports:Muslims around the world protest Gaza assault

Added January 5 2009

Sunday Jan 4 Report: Protests in Canada against Attack in Gaza

Sunday Jan 4 Reports: US protests against Attack in Gaza

Sunday Jan 4 Reports: Protests around the World Against Gaza assault

December Reports

December 29 Reports:Global protests against Israel

Published in: on January 4, 2009 at 12:02 am  Comments Off on Saturday Jan 3 Reports:Canadian Protesters march in support of Palestinians  
Tags: , , , ,

A series of political rallies were held in cities across Canada

Demonstrators hold signs at a rally in support of the Bloc Quebecois supported Liberal-NDP coalition to replace the Conservative minority government, in Montreal on Saturday, Dec. 6, 2008. (Ryan Remiorz / THE CANADIAN PRESS)
Demonstrators hold signs at a rally in support of the Bloc Quebecois supported Liberal-NDP coalition to replace the Conservative minority government, in Montreal on Saturday, Dec. 6, 2008. (Ryan Remiorz / THE CANADIAN PRESS)

Demonstrators hold signs at a rally in support of the coalition to replace the Conservative minority government in Montreal on Saturday, Dec. 6, 2008. (Ryan Remiorz / THE CANADIAN PRESS)

Demonstrators hold signs at a rally in support of the coalition to replace the Conservative minority government in Montreal on Saturday, Dec. 6, 2008. (Ryan Remiorz / THE CANADIAN PRESS)

Nancy Szkurhan, of Kanata, Ont., holds a sign as she takes part in an anti-coalition rally on Parliament Hill in Ottawa on Saturday Dec. 6, 2008. (THE CANADIAN PRESS / Sean Kilpatrick)

Nancy Szkurhan, of Kanata, Ont., holds a sign as she takes part in an anti-coalition rally on Parliament Hill in Ottawa on Saturday Dec. 6, 2008. (THE CANADIAN PRESS / Sean Kilpatrick)

Coalition and Liberal Leader Stephane Dion and NDP leader Jack Layton raise their joined hands at a pro-coalition rally in Toronto on Saturday Dec. 6, 2008. (Chris Young / THE CANADIAN PRESS)

Coalition and Liberal Leader Stephane Dion and NDP leader Jack Layton raise their joined hands at a pro-coalition rally in Toronto on Saturday Dec. 6, 2008. (Chris Young / THE CANADIAN PRESS)

A protester holds up a drawing of Liberal Leader Stephane Dion stylized as Stalin during an anti-coalition rally on Parliament Hill in Ottawa, Thursday Dec. 4, 2008. (Sean Kilpatrick / THE CANADIAN PRESS)

A protester holds up a drawing of Liberal Leader Stephane Dion stylized as Stalin during an anti-coalition rally on Parliament Hill in Ottawa, Thursday Dec. 4, 2008. (Sean Kilpatrick / THE CANADIAN PRESS)

December 6 2008

A series of political rallies were held in cities across Canada on Saturday, some in support and others in protest of the opposition coalition that threatened to topple the Conservative government earlier this week.

In some cases, both pro- and anti-coalition rallies took place in the same city.

In Toronto, Canada’s federal Liberal and NDP leaders addressed several thousand supporters in Toronto on Saturday afternoon.

Liberal Leader Stephane Dion told a pro-coalition crowd at Toronto’s Nathan Phillips Square that Canada urgently needs a plan to help the country’s economy.

“We want to help our country to fight the economic crisis that is coming, and for that we need to pull together,” he said Saturday afternoon.

He also said Prime Minister Stephen Harper had “wasted time on partisan games and locked the doors of Parliament.”

NDP Leader Jack Layton followed Dion and told the crowd that the prime minister had put “a padlock on Parliament Hill” and was “desperately clinging to power.”

“By closing down Parliament, he has silenced your voice,” Layton said. “He has turned his back on the economy and on the people who are being thrown out of work.”

Layton criticized Harper for delivering “an ideological plan” in the government’s fiscal update, when Canadians needed the prime minister to look after their best interests.

About two kilometers north of the pro-coalition rally featuring Layton and Dion, a crowd of more than 500 held an anti-coalition rally at the provincial legislature buildings in Queen’s Park.

In Ottawa, an anti-coalition rally saw an estimated 3,000 people gather on Parliament Hill in the bitter cold, in order to protest the Liberal-NDP coalition that is backed up by the Bloc Quebecois.

CTV’s John Hua said crowd members had told him “the people here are for Stephen Harper, but for the most part they are here for democracy.”

“They have come because they have chosen a government, they have chosen the specific people to lead this country, and that it’s…not up to backroom deals for people to come together and pull that majority away from Stephen Harper,” he told CTV’s Newsnet in a phone interview from Ottawa.

Another rally in Calgary saw about 2,000 people gather in support of the existing Conservative government, and just over 200 people showed up to a similar rally in Halifax.

Another 200 people showed up at anti-coalition rally held in front of the New Brunswick legislature in Fredericton.

In Halifax, protesters held placards urging federal politicians to respect their votes, using slogans like “My Vote Counts,” “No Secret Deals” and “Respect Our Votes” to convey their message.

Conservative MP Gerry Keddy, who was present at the Halifax rally, called on the coalition to give “its head a shake.”

In Montreal, just under 1,000 people showed up to a pro-coalition rally that was organized by three major Quebec unions.

That rally was attended by Bloc Quebecois Leader Gilles Duceppe, as well as NDP and Liberal party representatives.

Duceppe told the crowd that Harper is “trying to make Canada a banana republic” by proroguing Parliament.

Also in Montreal, a crowd of about 30 people held a demonstration outside Dion’s Montreal offices, in support of the Conservative government.

All of the protests began at noon ET on Saturday, including about 20 organized by Canadians for Democracy, which opposes the proposed Liberal-NDP-Bloc Quebecois coalition.

On its website, rallyforcanada.ca, the group accuses the NDP and Liberals of getting into bed with separatists and warns that the threat of a coalition taking power will resume once Parliament returns on Jan. 26.

“Let’s rally to show the proposed coalition that this isn’t a good option,” reads a message on the website.

The Canadian Labour Congress, which supports the coalition, held rallies in Toronto’s Nathan Phillips Square, as well as in Montreal and Sudbury, Ont.

A radio ad that also appears on the CLC’s website encourages supporters to attend Saturday’s rallies by slamming Harper’s inability to work with the opposition parties to devise solutions for a sluggish economy.

“During the election, Stephen Harper told us he would make a minority Parliament work and put our economy first. He has failed.”

The rallies come at the end of a whirlwind week in Ottawa, as the three opposition parties threatened to overthrow Harper’s Conservative minority and take power after a confidence vote that had been scheduled for Monday.

The move was largely a response to last week’s economic update, delivered by Finance Minister Jim Flaherty, which withdrew public funding for the federal parties and failed to include details of an economic stimulus package.

Harper responded by asking Gov. Gen. Michaelle Jean to prorogue Parliament. That gives him until Jan. 26 to prepare a budget that will contain a plan for stimulating the economy. Jean agreed and Harper will now present a budget on Jan. 27.

He has said he would like input from the opposition parties as he prepares his economic plan.

Saturday’s rallies follow a series of pro-coalition protests Thursday, including one on Parliament Hill that drew about 2,000 supporters.

Source

Prime Minister Stephen Harper announces that Governor General Michaelle Jean approved his recommendation to prorogue Parliament at Rideau Hall in Ottawa Thursday, Dec. 4 , 2008. (THE CANADIAN PRESS / Tom Hanson)

Prime Minister Stephen Harper prepares his speech to the nation from his office on Parliament Hill in Ottawa, Wednesday, Dec.3, 2008. (Tom Hanson / THE CANADIAN PRESS)

Prime Minister Stephen Harper prepares his speech to the nation from his office on Parliament Hill in Ottawa, Wednesday, Dec.3, 2008. (Tom Hanson / THE CANADIAN PRESS)

Liberal Leader Stephane Dion reads his speech in reaction to the prime minister's televised speech to the nation from his office on Parliament Hill in Ottawa Wednesday, Dec. 3, 2008. (Adrian Wyld / THE CANADIAN PRESS)

Liberal Leader Stephane Dion reads his speech in reaction to the prime minister’s televised speech to the nation from his office on Parliament Hill in Ottawa Wednesday, Dec. 3, 2008. (Adrian Wyld / THE CANADIAN PRESS)

Harper wrong on democracy claims: experts

December 4 2008

By Jim Brown

OTTAWA — If there’s one point on which Stephen Harper has been adamant, it’s his claim that the opposition politicians trying to strip him of power are undermining democracy.

“The Canadian government has always been chosen by the people,” the prime minister declared in his mid-week televised address to the country.

But now, he told viewers, a coalition of opposition parties is trying to oust him through a backroom deal “without your say, without your consent and without your vote.”

Just how valid is Harper’s claim that changing governments without a new election would be undemocratic?

“It’s politics, it’s pure rhetoric,” said Ned Franks, a retired Queen’s University expert on parliamentary affairs. “Everything that’s been happening is both legal and constitutional.”

Other scholars are virtually unanimous in their agreement. They say Harper’s populist theory of democracy is more suited to a U.S.-style presidential system, in which voters cast ballots directly for a national leader, than it is to Canadian parliamentary democracy.

“He’s appealing to people who learned their civics from American television,” said Henry Jacek, a political scientist at McMaster University.

Harper signed similar document in 2004

In Canada, there’s no national vote for prime minister. People elect MPs in 308 ridings, and a government holds power only as long as it has the support of a majority of those MPs.

“We have a rule that the licence to govern is having the confidence of the House of Commons,” said Peter Russell, a former University of Toronto professor and adviser to past governors general.

“I’m sorry, that’s the rule. If they want to change it to having a public opinion poll, we’d have to reform and rewrite our Constitution.”

Harper himself signed a letter to then-Governor General Adrienne Clarkson in 2004, claiming the right to form a government if Paul Martin’s minority Liberals could be defeated in a confidence vote in the Commons.

His ostensible partners would have been NDP Leader Jack Layton and Bloc Quebecois Leader Gilles Duceppe — now derided by Harper as the “socialist” and the “separatist” in Liberal Leader Stephane Dion’s coalition.

“I was just as much a sovereigntist then as I am now,” Duceppe sniffed Thursday in a reference to Harper’s new-found aversion to any deals with the Bloc.

Such facts are conveniently forgottenby some members of Harper’s cabinet who have been even more vocal than their boss in the current crisis.

Revenue Minister Jean-Pierre Blackburn has characterized the opposition effort to bring down the Tories as a “coup d’etat.”

Transport Minister John Baird spoke Thursday of the need for the Conservatives to go “over the heads” of both Parliament and Gov. Gen. Michaelle Jean to take their case straight to the people.

There’s no doubt the central Harper claim — that he can’t legitimately be dumped from office without a new election — is dead wrong, said Jonathan Rose, a Queen’s University political scientist.

But as a communications strategy it has the virtue of being simple, direct and powerful.

“He’s using this bludgeon of an argument (but) most people just see the word democracy and have some intuitive connection to it,” said Rose.

By contrast, the theory and practice of parliamentary confidence and responsible cabinet government take some explaining.

But Harper may have undermined his own effort Thursday with his visit to the Governor General to get permission to shut down Parliament for seven weeks.

It was the only way he could dodge a confidence vote that would have toppled his government next Monday. But it also presented the Liberals, NDP and Bloc with a ready-made response to the prime minister’s claim of democratic superiority.

“You need something visceral and simple,” said Rose. “The opposition metaphor of locking the doors to Parliament does it. I think people understand that.”

Source

Harper ‘lies’ about coalition details