As Leader of the Opposition in 2003, Stephen Harper wrote a most venomous op-ed piece in the Wall Street Journal. He stated how ashamed he felt that the Canadian government of former prime minister Jean Chretien failed to join as comrades-in-arms with cousins from the U.S., Australia and U.K. in George W. Bush’s Coalition Of The Willing.
Like-minded scribblers across Canada bombarded editors of local and national newspapers urging Mr. Chretien to help get rid of those very menacing and lethal weapons of mass destruction (WMDs). Although the elusive WMDs have never been found, the ill-fated invasion created a Middle Eastern morass of sectarian and civil violence that has spread across several countries of that region.
Even Canadians so quick to condemn Mr. Chretien’s reluctance in 2003 are now justifiably leery of the current Canadian invasion of Iraq, where our fighter jets are bombing and special commando forces are reportedly in ground combat with ISIS rebels.
At long last, the Canadian military publicly admits what the rest of us have known for a long time, that any operation to overcome ISIS will take several years. Yet our PM seems to figure that he’s living out the lyrics of one of those Beatles songs he enjoys singing from time to time. Not that too many enjoy hearing his renditions, but they are far too polite, or far too cowed, to complain. In the iconic Norwegian Wood, John Lennon sang about “I sat on a rug, biding my time, drinking her wine…So I lit a fire…”.
I have no idea if PM Harper sits on a rug drinking wine, but it sure sounds like he has bided his time, and is now lighting his fire in Iraq. The one he yearned to ignite a dozen years ago.