Video by Jase Tanner. "We're going to keep protesting until we get a government that respects international law, takes a stand against torture," says StopWar.ca organizer Derrick O'Keefe, September 26, 2011, at a rally to protest Dick Cheney's book tour stop in Vancouver. Individuals paid $500 a ticket to hear Cheney speak at the event organized by Le Bon Mot, and sponsored by the Globe and Mail and others. As a confessed war criminal and supporter of torture, Human Rights Watch and others have called for his arrest under international law.
Last Friday on CBC Radio's The Current, Laurie Hawn, parliamentary secretary to Defence Minister Peter MacKay, complained about all the "nitpicking" and insisted that the Afghan detainee issue is not one that concerns Canadians.
This dismissive attitude -- which permeates the Harper government -- is puzzling.
At stake is whether Ottawa knowingly allowed prisoners to be transferred to situations where they would likely be tortured.
We are in a progressive moment, a moment when the ground is shifting beneath our feet, and anything is possible. What we considered unimaginable about what could be said and hoped for a year ago is now possible. At a time like this, it is absolutely critical that we be as clear as we possibly can be about what it is that we want because we might just get it.
So the stakes are high.
On March 20, 2003, the United States launched its second war of agression against Iraq resulting in the defeat of the Baathist regime and an ongoing military occupation. Prior to the invasion, there were mass anti-war protests around the world.
Ten year after the war began, activists reflected on the legacy of these protests.