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Prime Minister Stephen Harper arrives in Port-of-Spain, ahead of the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting, on November 26, 2009.
Prime Minister Stephen Harper arrives in Port-of-Spain, ahead of the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting, on November 26, 2009.

Norman Spector

Dear Prime Minister Add to ...

Perusing my morning read, I see that your government plans next week to put Michael Ignatieff to an early test on the HST. What a brilliant chess move!

Now that we're agreed on that one, I'd like to pitch, for the third time, another idea your advisers appear to have pooh-poohed - an inquiry into prisoner transfers.

I know you have many other Liberal fish to fry, starting with Mr. Ignatieff having set a carbon reduction target on the very day his environment critic said it could not be done. However, while a 20 per cent reduction below 1990 levels will no doubt bring joy to Conservative attack dogs, I'm sure you would agree that the responsibilities of your high office transcend taking care of narrow partisan interests.

Prime Minister, there is a cloud on the horizon that you should know about: The Wall Street Journal is reporting that the chief prosecutor of the International Criminal Court, Luis Moreno Ocampo, "is already conducting a 'preliminary examination' into whether NATO troops … fighting the Taliban may have to be put in the dock: 'There are different reports about problems with bombings and there are also allegations about torture'," Mr. Ocampo tells editorial writer Daniel Schwammenthal.

As you know, Prime Minister, the International Court was designed by its creators, which included Canada, to function when a government condones or participates in an alleged war crime, or is reluctant to prosecute those who may have. Which, not to put too fine a point on it, is how your government's refusal to provide documents to a parliamentary committee could easily be interpreted by an outsider. Rather than providing an opening for Mr. Ocampo to step in, would it not be preferable to conduct a serious investigation ourselves into diplomat Richard Colvin's allegations? If the concern is that sensitive national security information could be compromised by a public inquiry, may I then humbly suggest an inquiry along these lines?

Yours faithfully, etc.

(Photo: Prime Minister Stephen Harper arrives in Port of Spain last night for a Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting. Chris Wattie/Reuters)

 

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