The Mail

The Mail

April 1 2002
The Mail

The Mail

April 1 2002

The Mail

Crime of terror

The world should commend you for exposing the blatant mockery of justice in the death of Luc Ethier (“Murder mystery in Kuwait,” Cover, March 18). I am surprised you call it a mystery with all the evidence you presented. If these defenceless Filipino migrants are convicted and punished, the world should be ashamed. The hands-off attitude of our ambassador, Richard Mann, is appalling.

Bert Cachero, Calgary

I’ve just read your article on my cousin Luc and I would like to thank you for it. You’ve depicted him as we all knew him growing up, a down-to-earth boy who in no circumstances deserved to die as he did. Richard Ethier, La Salle, Que.

Religious voting

Why must Stockwell Day’s expression of his religiously based convictions amount to “mobilizing” anyone (“Religion and the right,” Canada, March 18)? Steven Harper must know, as your article states, that Canadian evangelicals are by no means a united political force. He is accusing Day of pandering to a political nonentity. Still, Day has committed the unpardonable sin of stating his views on social issues. If only

he had realized that, in federal politics, it’s best not to have any views on just about any issue. Trevor Seath, Toronto

Any leader of the official Opposition must be seen by the people as having the qualities of a prime minister for Canada. Time and again, Stockwell Day has shown clearly that he is not worldly enough to be the leader of our country. I wonder—who are those people who think he is?

Joyce Janzen, Nanaimo, B.C.

In the line of duty

I wish to congratulate Macleans for raising public awareness about the multiple dangers that reporters face in keeping the public informed about events here and abroad (“Journalists on the battlefield,” From the Editor, March 18). While correspondents in other parts of the world often seem to be more exposed to life-threatening situations, we must not forget the attempt on the life of Michel Auger, the Montreal reporter who was shot while investigating organized crime in Canada. Reporters Without Borders, an international organization that defends press freedom, reports that five journalists have been killed and 120 imprisoned since January, 2002.

David A. Walden, Secretary-General, Canadian Commission for UNESCO, Ottawa

Speaking up for peace

Yes, Foreign Minister Bill Graham is right to criticize Israel’s use of aggressive force in response to terror attacks (“Graham weighs in,” Canada and the World, March 18). People living in Fortress America, and I include Canada, should realize that we are all involved in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and Sept. 11 tells us that we are not safe. If we don’t speak up and seek peace, then we are as guilty as the active participants. And more innocent people will get killed.

John C.Tan, Coldstream, B.C.

Journalistic danger

I met photographer Myles Tierney, whose death in Sierra Leone is described in the excerpt from Ian Stewart’s book Freetown Ambush (“Nightmare in West Africa,” The Macleans Excerpt, March 18), in December, 1996, while travelling in East Africa. He had recendy been assigned to the APTV bureau in Nairobi and had just returned from covering events in the former Zaire. Some of the horrors he described witnessing were incomprehensible, even to himself. Myles apologized for his newly acquired smoking habit and was embarrassed that his nightmares might have been a disturbance. Ironically, Myles’ last words to me were, “Be careful.” He obviously saw a side of Africa I’ve never seen in my travels to different parts of the continent. The Myles I met was bright, articulate and sensitive to the world around him. Thanks to Ian Stewart for not letting this story go untold. Anne Beaton, Inverness, N.S.

When Bill Graham or any other minister of our government speaks at a formal gathering, he speaks on behalf of the government of Canada, not as a private citizen. It is therefore inappropriate to ask in a www.macleans.ca online poll if “he” was right to criticize Israel for its aggressive response to terror attacks. If the minister for foreign affairs is making statements contrary to government policy, he must either retract the comments or resign. The Prime Minister’s later speech to the same audience, neither reinforcing nor denouncing the original comments, did not clarify the situation. We are left to wonder what is the position of the Canadian government on this issue.

Bob Little, Dartmouth, N.S.

Kyoto in perspective

Residing in Finland has given me a much more detached perspective on Canadian politics (“The cost of Kyoto,” Business, March 18). Canadians need to start thinking outside the American-made box. We too often forget there is a wealth of governmental structures, cultures and values around the globe—the European Union, for instance—that can provide a

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The Mail

useful alternative view. The EU and its member states have already begun the Kyoto ratification process. And most European businesses are in favour of the Kyoto deal because, unlike in America, European companies have a strong sense of social responsibility. Furthermore, this is not a matter we should be relying on economists and business analysts to decide. Their job is to predict the short term, and this is not a short-term problem.

Maurice Forget, Helsinki, Finland

We have been told that the Kyoto accord will cost billions and billions of dollars if implemented. Let’s consider for a moment if it is not implemented. Flow much will it cost to move people from low-lying coastal areas? How much will it cost to restructure our agriculture industry when crops no longer grow because they are no longer suited to the environment? How much will it cost in health care as diseases until now found in tropical areas march north and affect more Canadians? How much more will it cost as cities such as Calgary

become surrounded by deserts? How much will it cost when we are affected by severe weather? How much more will it cost when you look into the eyes of your children and grandchildren and tell them that the Kyoto accord was going to cost too much?

Paul Lamothe, Edmonton

I applaud Environment Minister David Anderson for his vision and support of the Kyoto protocol. George W. Bush will be remembered as the American president who could have, but did not, make a difference in swinging the pendulum in the direction of reduced greenhouse gases while there was still time.

Cathie Hammill, Clinton, Ont.

Disposal at sea

As a chief officer aboard a liquefied petroleum gas carrier, I must comment on your article about ships pumping their bilges at sea (“When lazy captains come to Canada,” Overture, Feb. 25). Laziness is not the problem. It is often very difficult to find the facilities to pump these oily wastes

ashore, especially in the U.S. Some ships do not have a large capacity for retaining oily wastes aboard. Many unscrupulous shipping companies pressure their ships’ senior officers to dispose of the wastes at sea. It is cheaper to gamble on not getting caught than it is to pay for disposal ashore. The company I work for converted one of the diesel fuel tanks to an oily-waste storage tank to give us a greater capacity until we find the facilities to pump the wastes ashore. In Europe there are barges that will take oily wastes for a reasonable fee.

John Lyle, Chateauguay, Que.

Heartless in Alberta

In “The heart of the game” (March 11), Allan Fotheringham claims that hockey is “every Prairie kid . . . imagining playing left wing on the Toronto Maple Leafs.” I think these kids are more likely to imagine themselves playing for the Oilers or the Flames—even the Canadiens. Not too many Leaf fans out here. Indeed, Toronto is, at best, held in contempt. Your central Canadian bias is showing.

Glenn Allan, Slave Lake, Alta.