RADARSAT Now Launched! Canada Reaches New Heights in Hypocrisy & Space Militarisation

59 posts / 0 new
Last post
Richard Sanders Richard Sanders's picture

The Liberal Party recently put out a media release taking credit for RADARSAT-2. [url=http://www.liberal.ca/story_13436_e.aspx]http://www.liberal.ca/story_134...

Of course, no mention of how the US military will likely use RADARSAT-2 in every upcoming war.

The Liberals turn the privatisation scandal on its head. Instead of saying, hey we took a billion from taxpayersto make ther RADARSAT system and then gave it away for a dollar to MDA (Where David Emerson used to be on the Board), they said this:

"The operation of the satellite will be the responsibility of MacDonald, Dettwiler and Associates Ltd. (MDA) who will cover the annual $15 million operating costs while providing Canadian government departments with free access to satellite data."

"Free access"? The Canadian government paid for about 90% of this system!!

How nice of the comapny to let the government use "its" satellite!!

When NDP and BQ MPs tried to get permission to peak at the secret contracts that gave away RADARSAT to MDA, the Liberal and Conservative MPs on the the Parliamentary Cttee. blocked their effort.

They did not want to even see the contracts!

Many more details on that here:

Richard Sanders Richard Sanders's picture

Here's a little article I wrote on how the Libs and Conservatives turned from the same page on refusing to allow MPs (let alone the public) to see the contract that gave away a billion dollar Canadian asset to MDA, which was then owned and controlleed by a large US company called Orbital Sciences -- one of the top rocket makers building technology for the Ballistic Missile Defence weapons system.

With Liberals like that, who needs Conservatives?

The Contracts that Privatised RADARSAT are Secret

In the House of Commons and in Parliamentary
committees, MPs from the New Democratic Party (NDP) and the Bloc Quйbйcois (BQ) have repeatedly
raised concerns that the government’s privatisation of RADARSAT might lead to military uses of its data that would go against the wishes of its main funders, the Canadian public.

In the Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs and International Trade in March 2004, Francine Lalonde, the BQ’s foreign affairs critic, tried to add an amendment to the government’s Remote
Sensing Space Systems Act (Bill C-25) to make it
“impossible for RADARSAT-2 to change hands and come under foreign ownership, given that the technology was largely developed at the
space agency and that Quebec and Canadian citizens have invested a great deal of money in this satellite.”1

Lalonde’s motion was defeated by the Liberals and Conservatives on the committee. She then tried another motion to allow committee members to at least see the contracts used by the Canadian Space Agency to hand over RADARSAT-2’s ownership to MacDonald, Dettwiler and Assoc. (MDA).

The committee’s Liberal chairperson, Dan McTeague, the Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Foreign Affairs, accused Lalonde of using delaying tactics to stall the bill. He then
called Bruce Mann, the Senior Counsel for the Justice Legal Services Division of the Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade (DFAIT) to explain why releasing the contracts “would not be in the public interest.”2

Mann told the MPs that the government could not let them even see the contracts, let alone copy or make them ublic. He said that the government’s chief responsibility was to protect
MDA’s corporate interests. Apparently, if MPs were allowed to view the contracts it could lead to “material or financial loss” for MDA, or negatively “affect their competitive position.”3

DFAIT’s legal bureaucrat did not explain why the government had deliberately engineered the “material and financial loss” of $100s of millions in taxpayers’ dollars by handing over
ownership of RADARSAT-2 to MDA.

The NDP’s Alexa McDonough (MP, Halifax, NS), said that she found DFAIT’s legalistic explanations to be “simply further reminders of how wrong-headed it is for RADARSAT not to be retained in the public domain in the first place. It seems as though we’re being asked to endorse a black box here and told that we
can’t know what the contract contains because it could financially harm the private interests into whose hands we’ve passed this after a massive public investment.”4

When committee members voted on Lalonde’s motion to allow themselves to see the contract, all seven Liberal and Conservative MPs voted no. So, try as they might, the three BQ and NDP MPs were outvoted in their efforts to view the secret agreements that had given away Canada’s expensive, publicly-funded RADARSAT-2.

1. Evidence, Francine Lalonde, Standing
Committee on Foreign Affairs and International
Trade (SCFAIT), Mar. 24, 2005.
2. Evidence, Dan McTeague, op.cit.
3. Evidence, Mac Mann, op.cit.
4. Evidence, Alexa McDonough, op.cit.

Buddy Kat

It's clear that the only way Canadians are going to get justice here and expose these traitors and criminals is if they elect an NDP government.

Perhaps the NDP can make cleaning up the half centiry worth of corruption and criminal behaviour that surrounds the conservative and liberal an election issue.

It's the only way...failing that we might as well say goodbye to our nation. [img]wink.gif" border="0[/img]



Originally posted by Richard Sanders:
[QB]Here's a little article I wrote on how the Libs and Conservatives turned from the same page on refusing to allow MPs (let alone the public) to see the contract that gave away a billion dollar Canadian asset to MDA, which was then owned and controlleed by a large US company called Orbital Sciences -- one of the top rocket makers building technology for the Ballistic Missile Defence weapons system.

i thought that MDA was started by John McDonald and Detwiler. that they were 2 engineers with the skill in aerospace & electronics to build satellites, and that ... Voila ! MDA was borne.

but, it doesn't sound like it was that simple.

from observing Silicon Valley for 30 years, i had the impression that if you are technically talented and are willing to "play ball" with organizations like the CIA, NSA, NRO, etc., that they play the role of "king-maker" by giving you big contracts (or little contracts).

Larry Ellison at Oracle being one example. the US intelligence (state-sponsored terrorism) community was a primary customer early in the history of Oracle.

i had the impression that John McDonald was a talented engineer that was willing to "play ball" with the CSIS/ CIA axis of something, and he and his business associates were rewarded with big contracts.


Canada Reaches New Heights in Hypocrisy & Space Militarisation

thinking about the word hypocrisy. it's not an accident that Canada is part of the American war machine.

it seems hypocritical because we are taught about "motherhood and Apple pie" and "Canada and America are shining beacons of democracy" in school, then we find out that the adults ain't practicing what they preaching.

if they taught school children, Canada is part of the American war machine, and the American war machine has been engaged almost continuously in state-sponsored terrorism since about 1898 (ref. Zinn, People's History, Chap. 12 ==> Chap. 26), i guess then the US government would be homicidal and honest ?

Canada is way more peaceful than the US. Canada was a genuine safety valve during the Vietnam war. Canadian troops in Afghanistan may have a peaceful effect. i can't help but wonder if they chill out the American troops.

of course they also breathe the same depleted uranium dust as American troops. which will be a big cost for the Canadian health care system.

incidentally we have local counter-recruiting & underground railroad efforts. one group goes out into the high schools, under the auspices of being a parent, to talk to high school kids about some of the un-documented fringe benefits of military service. the underground railroad is a group that helps troops exit the US military. they helped 500+ troops say "hasta la vista" during the last year. they help the troops with the legal stuff, finding places to stay, re-connecting with their families, finding jobs. it's not really underground, the government is quite aware of the group.

a lot of the time, people join the military because they need a job. there's a similar "jobs" aspect with the war-toys that Canada participates in the making of.

yes, i would expect a moral Canadian government to stop all uranium shipments to the US in 1999 or 1990, whenever the US started using depleted uranium ammunition.

but if you add up the MDA-type aerospace contracts, and all the Canadian (and Australian) uranium ore, it creates a lot of jobs. now, if we can create war jobs, we can create peace jobs (or maybe just chill out and work part-time ?) - but that is a big societal shift. i think of an NDP-Green fusion as being an example of that shift.

i think the Canadians that have war-toy jobs would be reluctant to give them up, especially since a lot of them used those jobs to buy real estate which is now doing very well. a lot of those people are not going to vote for the NDP-Green fusion unless they are comfortable that this group of leaders will "be good for business".

but, frankly, since Canada has a stable government & lots of resources, and a fiscal surplus, i don't think Canada needs so much military (except to defend themselves from American invasion.) it would be possible for a Jack Layton to appeal to those Canadians that are embedded in the Canadian part of the war toy machine, and to lead Canada away from being a military supplier of the US.

that's theory. maybe some Canadians like being a military supplier of the US ?

one other factor is Israel. Israel REALLY likes that American war machine with the Canadian support, and the Israeli lobby is very powerful in both countries.

anchovy breather

And it's gone (i think). MDA sold directly to US defense contractors.


Daniel Friedmann, CEO of the Canadian technology provider, said the sale of the information systems and geospatial services business will allow the company to focus management and financial resources exclusively on its rapidly growing information products business.

"The operations we divest will have greater growth potential under a complementary U.S. owner who recognizes its inherent value, and who is better positioned than we are to unlock this value in the U.S. market," Friedmann said in a statement after markets closed.

Shares in MDA were down 15 cents at $42.51 on the Toronto Stock Exchange before being halted late in the day pending the announcement. Based on the company's share price on Tuesday the MDA had a stock market value of $1.76 billion.



ATK, a producer of solid rocket motors and a prime contractor to NASA, will create a separate business group, ATK Space Systems, which will include the operations being acquired from MDA, as well as other ATK assets in the U.S.

"We will benefit greatly from the addition of MDA's talented workforce, which like our own is known for its innovative, lower cost, yet highly reliable accomplishments," ATK chairman and CEO Dan Murphy stated.

"The operations we are acquiring are very complementary, and fully align with our strategic objective to provide complete end-to-end content to our domestic and international customers."

After closing the sale of the division, MDA is expected to have about 1,100 employees, in Canada, the United States and Europe, down from more than 3,000.

MDA denied rumours last summer that the company was trying to sell the division. A report had suggested U.S. defence contractors Lockheed Martin Corp., Raytheon Co., Northrop Grumman Corp. and Alliant Techsystems as possible suitors

and [url=http://www.theglobeandmail.com/servlet/story/RTGAM.20080108.wmda0108/BNS...

Not an explicit mention of RADARSAT (which shows how useless the media is), but Richard, it looks like we got soaked by the war machine.

Richard Sanders Richard Sanders's picture

Canadian military industry has long been "soaked in by the [US] war machine" despite all the myths about our being a nation of peacemakers, etc. It seems everytime I open my mouth, I have to mention that myth:[url=http://coat.ncf.ca/articles/links/myth.html]Myth of Canada the Peacemaker[/url]

So, now MDA is back in the hands of a US military industry? It wouldn't be the first time. As I pointed out earlier, MDA used to be owned by Orbital Sciences. But who owns MDA is perhaps immaterial. It's the control of selling the data that's the crucial thing. Who's been selling the data from RADARSAT 2?

[url=http://coat.ncf.ca/our_magazine/links/58/Articles/30-32.pdf]Selling off RADARSAT data to the US military[/url]

[url=http://coat.ncf.ca/our_magazine/links/58/Articles/40-45.pdf]Meet US military guys who sold RADARSAT data[/url]

Gee, curious that this latest sale of MDA comes so soon after the launch of RADARSAT 2. Coincidence? Now that they've had time to make sure it's working, next stop Afghanistan and Iraq!! Yippee!! (But Canadians will probably never know.)

I've started a new topic with an article called MAJIIC Wars

That article is also available here:[url=http://coat.ncf.ca/articles/links/MDA-ATK.htm]MAJIIC Wars[/url]

[ 09 January 2008: Message edited by: Richard Sanders ]

[ 09 January 2008: Message edited by: Richard Sanders ]

M. Spector M. Spector's picture


Thank you for fixing the side-scroll!

This has now enabled me to read this very interesting thread. Thank you for all your hard work.


[url=http://www.rabble.ca/babble/ultimatebb.php?ubb=get_topic&f=2&t=009668]MDA sold to ATK[/url]

[ 09 January 2008: Message edited by: M. Spector ]