A Salute to a Brave and Modest Nation

Reprinted here is a remarkable tribute written by Irishman Kevin Myers about Canada's record of quiet valour in wartime. This article appeared in the April 21, 2002 edition of the Sunday Telegraph, one of Britain's largest circulation newspapers and in Canada's National Post on April 26, 2002.

Until the deaths last week of four Canadian soldiers accidentally killed by a U.S. warplane in Afghanistan, probably almost no one outside their home country had been aware that Canadian troops were deployed in the region. And as always, Canada will now 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, its 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, William Shatner, Norman Jewison, David Cronenberg 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 its 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 non-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 week, four more grieving Canadian families knew that cost all too tragically well.
 

Tears, and Thanks

Multiculturalism in Canada is an eye-gouging reality

 

By Charles Adler,QMI Agency

First posted: Friday, July 8, 2011 12:00:00 MDT AM

 

How can you not get a huge lump in your throat watching the video of a UBC graduate student, just back from Bangladesh, saying thank you for the support of so many Canadians for her plight.

She is wearing sunglasses and it’s not because it’s sunny in Vancouver.

Rumana Manzur’s eyes were gouged, allegedly by her husband, who is now in prison in Bangladesh. The assault took place in full view of her five-year-old daughter.

This was the story we opened our TV show with on Sun News Network. As host, itis my job to stay somewhat in command of my emotions. But I corral my emotions on the Manzur story by thinking about my reverence for maternal love.

She was in Bangladesh so she could spend time with her little girl. I hope the girl gets to see her mom again. We can only pray some day the mother will regain her sight so she will be able to see her daughter’s beautiful smile.

Only one day earlier, we were witnessing the emotionally wrenching video of Melissa Styles, the widow of York Regional Const. Garrett Styles, at the funeral for her husband.

She was expressing gratitude to her husband for giving her two children, one of whom is only two months old.

We don’t have to guess Melissa Styles knew full well on any given day she was saying “goodbye and I love you” to her husband, he might not make it home that night.

Cop families and military families are always putting fear on ice so they can support the high purpose of community and national service.

I contain my emotion by thinking about how grateful I am for their service.

And only minutes after dealing with the maimed UBC student, our eyes are pried open again to the reality of multiculturalism in Canada.

The focus shifts to Valley Park Middle School in Toronto where the Muslim students are allowed to have prayer services on Friday afternoons. A section of the cafeteria becomes a mosque.

Ali Baig is the volunteer prayer leader.

He told us the school administration, teachers and parents, most of whom are Muslim, have worked out what they think is a practical solution to a real-life problem that pitted religious values against secular public school values.

Muslims are expected to be at prayer on Fridays, the holiest day of the week in the Islamic faith. In what has traditionally been our Judeo- Christian culture, Friday was a school day. Sabbath was, and for most Canadians still is, a weekend event.

Baig patiently told us that for his community this wasn’t an issue of the majority accommodating the minority because at Valley Park Middle School, 80%-90% of the student population is Muslim.

I thank Baig for his comments while telling him from a national perspective he holds a minority viewpoint. He graciously thanks me for the opportunity to express it and my emotions are contained by acknowledging today is eyegouging Canadian reality.

Since many of the people coming to this country in recent years are far more committed to advocating for their values than the rest of us have been in defending ours, only a fool could conclude the less committed side would prevail.

 

A Daughter’s Fight to Honour her Dad

By Charles Adler, QMI Agency

First posted: Friday, June 17, 2011 2:00:00 EDT AM

 

Julie Adamson is third generation cop. Her grandfather was a Toronto police chief. Her father was the commander of the Emergency Task Force. He was a crack shot and then one he day he cracked. And it was in the line of duty.

Nobody doubts that except the guardians of the stone, the Remembrance Wall on the ground of the Ontario legislature a.k.a. Queen’s Park. That’s where Ontario police officers who have died in the line of duty are memorialized.  Julie is working her badge off to get her dad’s good name on that wall.

Thirty-one years ago, Eddie Adamson was trying to rescue a fellow cop named Michael Sweet, who had been taken hostage in a failed robbery attempt of a Toronto bistro called Georges.

Sweet was shot and was dying an excruciatingly slow and painful death at the hands of his killers, the Munro brothers. They were physically tormenting him and psychologically torturing him and it was Eddie Adamson’s job as the commander of the Emergency Task Force to take down those boys. But the green light he needed from his superiors never came. They felt it was too dangerous to go into the area where the Munros were holed up with the cop they had shot. After more than an hour, Eddie Adamson disobeyed orders and went in with tear gas and lead.

The Munros went down in a hail of gunfire. They survived their wounds, but it was too late for Const. Michael Sweet. He died in Eddie Adamson’s arms. And the best of Eddie started dying that night. Twenty-five years later, only nine days before his 58th birthday, he checked into a motel and took his life.

Julie Adamson wants her dad honoured with all the other police officers who are remembered for dying in the line of duty, wants his name on that special wall at Queen’s Park. Getting this done is not easy.

It exposes the still-stigmatized subject of mental illness, specifically post-traumatic stress syndrome, and goes against the wishes of at least one cop who wrote me this week saying, “Eddie was no hero. He was a guy with problems who took the easy way out.” Many still prefer to think of suicide as an act of recklessness and irresponsibility, an easy exit.

Many other cops have told me they didn’t find anything about the last twenty-five years of Eddie’s life as easy, and they didn’t see his final decision as easy.

I can only hope that the senior officers reading this column will go to the link as well and then make the decision to memorialize Sgt. Eddie Adamson on the Remembrance Wall at Queen’s Park. Yes, there are those who want these decision makers to sit on their hands the way Eddie was once instructed to sit on his. But if we as people slam the doors on the Eddie Adamsons and try to diminish their legacy by condemning their final acts, we diminish ourselves a society.

Nobody doubts that Eddie Adamson died as a result of psychological wounds inflicted in the line of duty. It’s now the duty of others to etch that truth in stone.

Sgt. Eddie Adamson,  may you rest in peace.  Thank you for giving us your daughter Julie.  You have inspired her to follow in your very big footsteps. She is serving and protecting Canadians and honouring her dad.

Happy Father’s Day.

 

WATCH CHARLES' INTERVIEW WITH JULIE ADAMSON

*** CLICK HERE ***

Anatomy of a Real Scandal

By Charles Adler, QMI Agency

First posted: Friday, June 10, 2011 2:00:00 EDT AM

 

Canadian politics, eh?

Should the leader of a government be allowed to fly a government airplane to the Stanley Cup finals where “Canada’s team” is playing? Is this a serious question? Not my question. It’s the question forced upon the population by opposition politicians who are stickhandling their way to their political graves.

The government is about to take away their public trough privileges. The toonie-per-vote system is about to be trashed so the pols will have to raise money the old-fashioned way by developing a market for their ideas.

What’s the idea behind discussing whether or not the prime minister of the country should be allowed to take a government plane to a city hosting a playoff game? How much is the idea worth? Is anyone going to sign up to become a Liberal and make contributions to support this idea?

It’s true these non-stories provide Canadian content for journalists who pretend to care. But in their real lives these same people are discussing Anthony Weiner. They’re asking questions they would rather not write about publicly because it would make their Twitter followers think they are more interested in Weiner’s private affairs than Canada’s public affairs.

Let’s stop posing like priggish Canadians and pose questions about things that truly command our attention. Who cares about Weiner’s nationality? Our imaginations are without borders.

So close to Father’s Day, we now know Weiner will become a dad before the end of this year. Conception took place 10 weeks ago. Who knows when the video of that will surface?  But in the meantime, let’s think about Weiner, the next generation.

1) If your dad is Anthony Weiner, what do you give him for Father’s Day?

2) What do you give the father who has everything except a moral compass, sound judgment and the ability to tell the truth?

3) What would you say if the public tried to come between you and your father?

4) What if you started hearing complete strangers say that they knew what was best for you?

5) What if they recommended that you not be allowed to have any contact with your own father?

6) Yes, he may be your biological father. And he may really love and adore you the way any father cares for his child. But what about that judgment thing?

7) What about his recklessness?

8) What about his cred?

9) What would give you the impression that he is fit to be an appropriate role model in your life?

10) If your mom had been tweeting pics of her parts, do you doubt that people would be saying you should be taken away from your mother and raised by your father or your grandparents or a pack of wolves?

11) By the way, young Weiner, when you get to be 13, which is eight years more mature than the age your father is stuck at, will you be Googling his name?

12) Will you be wise enough to avoid everything that was said about him in 2011?

13) In case you become addicted to alcohol, drugs, cigarettes, gambling and prostitutes, will you blame Anthony Weiner?

14) Who can blame you?

The Blood Red Line in the Sand between Valour and Vulgar

by Charles Adler

I wasn't going to talk about Brigitte DePape today. Didn't want to generate any more publicity for the Parliament Hill protesting page for her so-called courageous act. But the response to her Friday photo op forces me to discuss my loathing for some of the privileged. The privileged are those people who have Canadian citizenship – more than 30 thousand. They are free people, free to protest virtually anywhere in this country including Parliament Hill, including Parliament itself apparently. She won't be charged for violating any law. Indeed if she were charged or even fined there would be a mountain of bull dung heaped on Harper from the usual bull dung suspects in media and elsewhere. Yes, I know she lost her low paying job as page over the protest. But gainful employment is not something she will be missing out on. Several organizations will be only too happy to attach themselves to her cause. She is not a spoiled brat who took advantage of her privileged position that many young people really, really want to have because they love their country and honor her democratic institutions. No, she is not a spoiled brat. She is hailed as a democratic activist. From a so-called progressive blog known as the Mark. I know this blog because the guy who puts it together hates my show and lets me know it. Not all who hate this show love the Protesting Page. But I am not surprised that there is a connection. Since I am not a Harper Hater and have turned the rhetorical lamp a time or two on those who are, it’s not surprising that this blogger writes the following today:

The young woman responsible for the only interesting thing to have happened in a Throne Speech since forever has won some new allies.

Brigitte DePape might have been fired by her Senate overlords for her “Stop Harper” protest during Friday's Throne Speech, but she's already got one job offer lined up – from American filmmaker Michael Moore. The left-wing activist director said he thought DePape's protest was "powerful" and "iconic" and would want her to work for him. Her former coworkers and other Parliament Hill types have been all too keen to criticize DePape for her protest, claiming it showed no respect to the institution, easily forgetting that not three months ago the government itself was found to be in contempt of Parliament. But her hand-made stop sign, and the photos of her being escorted from the red chamber, have reverberated across the country, with a handful of pro-DePape groups popping up on Facebook and a “Stop Harper” rally planned in Ottawa for June 10.

And the very first post on this blog reads this way.

What she did was absolutely fantastic, and highly effective! Bravo! I hope we don't soon forget it and I wish more of us were like her — she's a real Canadian Heroine! She spoke for more than half the country, which is more than what 1/2 the country could actually do. A true inspiration!

Considering the responses to her heroic act, it's pretty clear that the majority of the people agree with what she did, which goes to show a majority of Canadians do not agree with our government, meaning our government is out of touch with the people of Canada. Her act has shown that there is a fire burning strong in the hearts of Canadians – the need to re-form this government from a money and power loving one, into a truer and more sensible people loving one.

Our government has become distant, frail, and corrupt from its unhealthy concerns for money and power. The Canadian citizens may soon be required to take a strong hand with the government, to strengthen it's closeness with the people, and loosen its bonds with corporations. In order to create a government that serves the people more than it does today.

Hopefully soon we will see the needed change to our government, the change that the future generations will be thankful for.

Question: Does anyone honestly think that Brigitte DePaper is the role model that young people have been waiting for? This is the profile of courage when it comes to Democratic action? Is this an insult to young people or are some young simply guilty of insulting themselves?

This country needs an Arab spring she said, referencing the democratic street protests that have taken place, in the Arab world-Tunisia, Libya Yemen, Bahrain, Egypt, and Syria.

Would anyone mind if I focused on Syria for just a moment. And I say this because there are indeed young people taking real risks with real courage who are paying a real price. Hamza al-Khateeb would be one such person…When I tell you about this thirteen-year-old Syrian child you may agree that he paid a slightly higher price for his courage than the Parliament Hill Page.

From the Associated Press writing about the pudgy cheeked little boy and others like him in Syria.

The images grow no less shocking with time — a gaping wound on a tiny skull, the hair matted with blood; a gunshot that pierced the skin of a small torso and went straight toward the kidney; and finally, the broken neck and severed penis of a 13-year-old boy, his mangled body contorted on a plastic sheet.

The images of children activists say were killed in a government crackdown on protests are circulating widely among Syrians on YouTube and Al-Jazeera, Facebook and opposition websites. And they are stoking even more fury against a regime the opposition says has lost all legitimacy.

Syria's government tried to blunt the anger with promises Wednesday to investigate the killing of 13-year-old Hamza al-Khatib, whose tortured and mutilated body turned him into a symbol of the Syrian uprising. But protesters deride that and other government concessions, including an amnesty that freed political prisoners on Wednesday and a committee to prepare for national dialogue, as nothing more than a ploy to buy time for President Basher Assad. They say at least 25 children are among more than 1,000 dead, with government crackdowns that increase the toll almost daily.

The deaths of two girls — a 12-year-old killed Saturday when her school bus came under fire, and an 11-year-old shot to death Tuesday while her town was being shelled — appeared certain to inflame tensions. Already, a Syrian opposition page refers to the older girl, Hajar Tayseer al-Khatib, as "the flower of Syria's martyrs."

Leading Facebook page The Syrian Revolution 2011 addressed the regime directly in a posting: "Why do you hate our children. They are the symbol of our revolution. They are our freedom and the future of our country."

State television aired an interview with Dr. Akram Shaar, who examined al-Khatib's body. He said the cause of the death was shooting, and three bullets had hit the boy's body. He added that what appeared to be bruises and signs of torture were the result of natural decomposition since the boy died on April 29. His body was handed over to his family on May 21, state TV said.

The station also aired a recorded interview with al-Khatib's father who said he was received by Assad this week. The father added that the president considers "Hamza as his son and was touched" by the death.

On April 22, two boys whose ages were 7 and 10 were shot dead by security forces in the southern village of Izraa. A video aired then showed a man ran carrying the body of a young boy, whose hair was matted with blood from a gaping head wound.

Zuhair Awad al-Amar, 8, died after he was shot near the kidney on May 21 in the southern village of Nimr. A YouTube video showed his injury as a narrator said "these are the reforms of Bashar Assad."

These children are being killed by Syria's so-called Security Forces. Security forces in the Arab spring means security for the dictator and massive insecurity for the people who are desperate for a measure of dignity.

Could there be anything less dignified in our approach to what's going on over there than allowing a young parliamentary page to be puking up words about how Canada needs an Arab Spring to Stop Harper. Stop Harper from what? How did the Harper regime respond to the Parliamentary Page Protest?

Was she tortured, mutilated, made to disappear? Was a single hair on her head ruffled? Did she endure the pounding of Harper government goons?

What is the message that a Canadian brat sends to the children of Syria. "We think you're just characters on a TV show and you're making it difficult for us to watch? It's so much easier for us to watch someone who looks like she was cast to play the little girl in a sequel of the Adams family than to see torsos of young people tortured and murdered by the thugs of the Arab spring.

 

Let's bring it home now shall we, to Canada's spring where all sorts of deep penetrating analysis is blooming around the incident on Parliament Hill, the clarion call to Stop Harper.

The leading Stop Harper news organization is the venerable Toronto Star. They tried Stopping Harper with an avalanche news stories revolving around his "Contempt for Parliament" Contempt for Democracy which should be translated as Contempt for the Toronto Star's view of the Natural Order. The Toronto Star which has been for the Liberal party what Anthony Weiner's Twitter Page has been for him. The lead organ. The Toronto Star after propping up Liberal after Liberal gave up the ghost during the campaign, gave up on Michael Ignatieff and endorsed Jack Layton. They thought voting for Layton would be the best way to prevent Harper from getting a majority. And I guess all those readers the Toronto Star has in Chicoutimi and Rimouski and St Georges de Beauce were taking their inspiration from the Toronto Star and voting to Stop Harper.

Ok, so the Toronto Star had zero impact on Toronto and Ontario and Harper's Thugs won the day.

Just as theToronto Star had zero impact in Stopping Rob Ford and Ford's Thugs won anyway.

It's frustrating to be told you're an impact player but every time you take to the ice you're either checked into the boards, or someone skates around you or you are laughed at. Pretty soon you start to write like Heather Mallick the Toronto Star's role player, their number one paper tiger thug.

And she writes:

The skylark in question is that bright-eyed and braided young page, Brigette DePape, 21, whose mother is proud of her, as am I, as are thousands of Canadian young people who put idealism before an intern-type job that leads to fancy well-paid things if you’re willing to shut up.

It is a country, DePape said, that needs “an Arab spring.”

I have never heard the Harper-managed Canadian slide into backwater status put more eloquently. Well played, Brigette. She’s bright, she’s brave, she made her stand. If that makes her elitist — Harper’s favourite pejorative — so be it.

Unusually for me, I have been reading online commentary nationwide, written by people who lack the courage to use their own names. I was shocked. DePape is being given her due. “A courageous and peaceful example of protest,” one emailer wrote. “I’m surprised she wasn’t Tasered.”

The words of Heather Mallick of the Toronto Star, who would not have written them if the Parliamentary Page had held a sign saying, “Jack Layton Stop Supporting Separatism,” or  “Bob Rae Stop Supporting the NDP.”

Had a Page scrawled that chicken scratch on her little placard Heather Mallick would not have called her courageous and if she had written it, the Toronto Star would not have published it.

Courage has been defined as spitting in the faces of millions of Canadians who voted to stop minority governments from wasting time and money, to stop the constant talk about and spending hundreds of millions of dollars on elections. Canadians voted to stop election addiction. And theToronto Star calls that anti-democratic and the Page compares that to regimes which shoot eight year olds and saw the penises off thirteen year olds.

A young Canadian, more than five years younger than the young Page who is a poster child for Toronto Star/CBC Canadians. Another young Canadian wrote this about this very important day in world history when Canadians engaged in real fight for Democracy. It wasn't about Stopping Harper. It was about Stopping Hitler.

On June 6th, 67 years ago, the Canadian forces, alongside the British and American forces, were part of the greatest invasion in history. 130, 000 Allied soldiers and the largest naval fleet in history gathered to work towards a common goal, the defeat of German defences on the Normandy beaches. The soldiers prepared to storm the Normandy Beaches and gain a foothold in occupied Europe required to recapture France from German control and eventually try to win the war from the Western front. It seemed like suicide but Allied soldiers fought valiantly and brought down the German defences, entering Germany into a 3 front war and a likely loss. At the D-Day Landings, Canada was the first to achieve the objectives that it was assigned to after landing at its assigned beach, Juno Beach. Canada was the only one besides British and American forcesto receive its own beach to invade, code-named Juno Beach, a huge responsibility in itself. Allied forces depended on the successful invasion of Juno Beach to carry on fighting in occupied Europe and establish a secure and safe beachhead for troops and supplies to land. Canada had played an essential and strong contribution to the D-Day Landings, as it was in charge of invading Juno Beach, and did it successfully.

Canada achieved its objectives for the D-Day Landings and had massive success compared to other Allied divisions with a force of 14, 000 soldiers taking in the fact of the huge amount of fortifications at Juno Beach, it was a huge accomplishment. After only 3 hours of the initial landings, the Atlantic Wall at Juno Beach had been shattered allowing forces to push past the beach and sea wall to launch attacks into occupied Europe. By the day's end the Canadian forces had achieved an enormous task, much more than what had been expected of them. The 3rd Canadian Division had pushed farther into France than any other Allied Division – 8 kilometres inland (Landry 48). The next day also held promise for theCanadian forces, which had managed to link up with British forces that had landed at Sword Beach. This was important tobe able to secure a beachhead in Normandy allowing for further forces to land and push inward into occupied Europe (Roy 13). By July 9th, Caen had been captured by the Allied forces, with huge contributions from the Canadian forces that had fought against the Schutzstaffeln, one of Hitler's elite units. Caen, an important strategic location had been captured, "thanks in large part to the persistent efforts of the 3rd Canadian Division, Caen was at last in Allied hands (Veterans Affairs Canada). The capture of Caen dealt a crucial blow to the German defences in France, allowing the Allies to put firm foothold in occupied Europe from which they could launch attacks to take back France. Canada achieved its objectives at the D-Day Landings and the important objectives afterwards.

Canada had the monumental responsibility of invading a heavily fortified position, code-named Juno Beach, a huge responsibility that no other country besides the United States of America and Great Britain had. Canada was put to the responsibility of invading Juno Beach with 14, 00 soldiers, and 450 dropping behind enemy lines. 10, 000 sailors Royal Canadian Navy and its ships were among the invading naval forces, while Lancaster bombers and Spitfire fighters from the Royal Canadian Air Force joined the attack from the air (CBC). Taking Juno Beach was not an easy task but through hard work and dedication the Canadian invaders managed to overthrow the German defences and hand the German forces a stunning defeat. "Juno Beach was arguably the most heavily-fortified of the five invasion beaches" (Canada at War). The so called impenetrable Atlantic Wall had been penetrated and the Allies could now start landing additional troops and supplies. At night's end on June 6th the Canadian 3rd Division had fought the resistance from the determined German counter-attack and had achieved many of their objectives. Although the town of Caen was still not captured, this objective was overly optimistic (Roy 39) but the Allied forces with great contributions from the Canadian forces managedto capture this objective too. "Resistance was stiffening as they came closer to Caen but by nightfall the leading elements were over eight km inland" (Roy 26). Some of the soldiers had even reached Caen – Bayeux road – the 1st Hussars (Roy 26), a very close distance to the town of Caen. This meant that Canadian forces were the closest to the town of Caen, an important objective in the Normandy Landings. The Canadian forces had achieved the great task of invading from Juno Beach and had managed to push far inland.

The Canadian forces not only had to storm ashore from Juno Beach successfully but they also had to achieve many other objectives in occupied Europe. The Allies had made plans according to the successful Canadian assault and the successful fulfillment of the objectives afterwards. This meant that Canadian forces played a large role in the battle to come after D-Day and the Allied success also depended on the success of Canadian forces. After the invasion, Canada was given the task of liberating the Netherlands from German control (WarMuseum). After the initial attempt at break into the Netherlands had failed, the job was handed to Canadian forces, probably in respect to their successes at the D-Day Landings and afterwards. The Canadian forces met heavy resistance and determined German defenders but they managed to liberate the Netherlands. After the D-Day Landings, British and Canadian forces linked up to secure the beachhead and launch further offensives into France (Veterans Affairs Canada). Beach bombardment at the start of D-Day also included contributions from the Royal Canadian Air Force. Canadian bombers squadrons were composed of Lancaster bombers and Spitfire fighters and they weakened German industry and attacked strategic locations to decrease the resistance encountered by the invading soldiers (Reynoldson 38). The Allied forces depended on the success of all parts of the D-DayLandings and the Canadian forces did not fail to impress even if it came at a high cost.

Canada made massive contributions to the D-Day Landings and achieved many of their objectives, sooner than other Allied divisions. They instilled pride in the nation and had shown the power of Canada, as a great military power and as an ally. The 3rd Canadian Division had moved the farthest into France by nightfall and Canadian forces were the first to achieve their objectives after landing at their assigned beach. Canada was the only nation besides the United States of America and Great Britain that received its own beach to invade and had broken through the German defences at Juno Beach successfully. Allied forces also depended on the success of all parts of the invasion and Canadian forces did not let them down, achieving their objectives with great success. Canadian forces had created great pride for the nation with the tremendous success of the D-Day landings and had shown the world that Canada had the power to become a great military power in the future.

Our country took nearly a thousand casualties on D-Day and many times during the five year successful effort to Stop Fascism from having Global Dominion. I am not here today to bury Brigitte the Page. I am here to use her You Tube moment to make the point that 67 years ago thousands of Canadians, most of whom were her age or younger, were prepared to sacrifice themselves to preserve freedom and democracy and those journalists who covered it and analysed didn't need to create a fairy tale, didn't need to spin spin spin. Having met many of today's Canadian warriors who serve us in uniform, I am safe in saying that many young people in this country don't hold up signs for the cameras. They hold guns and they hold the lives of many other young people in the balance and we are proud of them. They are the descendants of those boys who became men on the beaches of Normandy 67 years ago. May they rest in peace and may we never forget the blood red line in the sand between valour and vulgar.