February 27, 2008,
Bill Casey, MP (Independent Progressive Conservative)
Cumberland Colchester Musquodoboit Valley
House of Commons
Ottawa, ON K1A 0A6
In an article from July 2004 called "The Problem With the CIA," George Friedman wrote:
"Bill Casey broke all the rules at CIA. It's time to find another Bill Casey."
Now I certainly don't want to find the kind of Bill Casey that George Friedman wants, but neither do I want a return to the kind of Bill Casey that Reagan employed as CIA director to run the Iran-Contra affair and to oversee the last years of Baby Doc's dictatorship in Haiti. (And besides, unlike Canada's longest-ruling PM, I don't believe one can communicate with dead spirits anyway.)
So although I do think that we need another Bill Casey, it would have to be a kind of Bill Casey that is altogether different... Are you that kind of Bill Casey? You do have a well-deserved reputation as something of a maverick having got yourself kicked out of the Conservative caucus. Other evidence of your independence is demonstrated by the following question that you asked in the House of Commons on March 19, 2003:
"Mr. Speaker, yesterday and today in the House, the Prime Minister made it very clear that changing regimes in different countries is not a policy that is desirable at any time. However, at the same time, media reports state that the Canadian government is spearheading a plan for a regime change of President Aristide in Haiti and even set the deadline of January 1, 2004. If the government supports regime change in Haiti, how can the Prime Minister say the government does not support regime change?"
As you will remember, Bill Graham replied in the usual obfuscatorial (yes, that really is a word) Liberal-Party manner by saying:
"Mr. Speaker, there was a newspaper report concerning a meeting that took place. Our embassy in Haiti issued a clarification and made it very clear we are not engaged in any way in trying to change the regime in Haiti.
However, we are engaged in what we always have been in Haiti: working for democracy, working for human rights, working for the betterment of the Haitian citizens, and working for a way in which we can restore a semblance of order in the Caribbean for the benefit of Caribbeans and Canadians. We will continue those efforts."
And the rest, they say, is history...
Feb. 29, 2008: The 4th Anniversary of Canada's Coup in Haiti!
The hope that you may be just the kind of Bill Casey needed to help right the wrong that Canada did in Haiti still requires something of a leap in faith. But since this is a leap year, let's take the leap! Curiously enough, this Friday, February 29 is the 4th anniversary of President Aristide's removal from office. Actually, he was physically "removed" (kidnapped) from his home and from his country on that day, by US marines. (They were kindly assisted by Canada's JTF2 who had secured the Port-au-Prince airport early that morning.)
There are those now standing in solidarity with the impoverished people of Haiti who could use your help in exposing these truths. Here is today's media release from the Canada Haiti Action Network:
Canadian groups to condemn failure of UN mission in Haiti
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE February 27, 2008
Toronto Members of the Canada Haiti Action Network (CHAN) as well as groups in the Haitian community in Montreal are planning a seven-city day of information, action and protest this Friday to mark the four-year anniversary of the imposition of a United Nations regime in Haiti.
On February 29, 2004, Haiti’s elected government and president, Jean-Bertrand Aristide, were ousted by a foreign-backed right-wing rebellion. The ousting was facilitated by a resolution of the United Nations Security Council, adopted at an overnight session on February 28/29. Several thousand soldiers from the U.S., France and Canada were then deployed.
"Four years later, the UN mission in Haiti has nothing to show for its efforts,” said Niraj Joshi here yesterday. She is a coordinator of CHAN and of the Toronto Haiti Action Committee. “The human rights situation remains precarious, and poverty and starvation are on the rise.”
"The economic and social policies of the nominally sovereign government of Haiti are controlled by international institutions, including the World Bank, International Monetary Fund, and the United Nations agencies.
Joshi says that members of her network were deeply disturbed by a January 29 Associated Press report that street vendors in the capital city of Port au Prince are once again selling biscuits made of dirt and clay to starving residents.
“Starvation in Haiti is not news to members of our network and to other human rights observers that have been to Haiti in the past four years,” she said. “Canada, the U.S. and the UN Security Council are hiding from the world that their occupation regime is failing the Haitian people.”
The UN has a 10,000-member police, military and administrative regime in Haiti. It spends some $600 million per year, almost double the national budget of the Haitian government. Haitians deeply resent that for 25 years, the wealthy countries of the world have repeatedly blocked or disrupted their efforts to create democratic and socially-progressive government.
Speaking in Vancouver, CHAN coordinator Roger Annis says that affiliates of the network will hold meetings, rallies or protest demonstrations in at least seven cities across Canada on or around February 29. In Montreal, members of Haitian community organizations will hold a rally and demonstration on February 29.
Annis is one of several CHAN coordinators to recently travel to Haiti on human rights investigative delegations.
Media Contacts for Canada Haiti Action Network:
Roger Annis (Vancouver) 778-858-5179
Niraj Joshi-Vijayan (Toronto) 416-731-2325
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[Not] Only in Canada You Say?
February is also 45th Anniversary of a US-led Coup in Canada!
So Bill, are you with us? Will you help draw attention to the human rights disaster that the Liberal government unleashed when it helped overthrow the democratically-elected government of Haiti. That 2004 coup empowered a brutal two-year dictatorship that the Liberal government was proud to support.
Now, we wouldn't want a foreign power like the US to engineer a regime change in Canada, so why would we want to aid and abet such a regime change in Haiti or elsewhere? That's a rhetorical question, so don't feel you need to answer it, though I wouldn't mind hearing your answer.
Now here's a funny thing. As it turns out, this February 2008, also marks the anniversary of another CIA-linked regime change, that some even dare to call a coup. This may come as a surprise, so I hope you are sitting down. Forty five years ago, on February 19, 1963, you may well remember that Diefenbaker's Red Tory government was toppled by a non-confidence vote. This "toppling" of the inimitable "Dief the Chief" was something that J.F.Kennedy’s National Security Advisor, McGeorge Bundy, later bragged about when he said:
"George Ball [the acting US Secretary of State] and I knocked over the Diefenbaker government by one incautious press release.”)
Now, "knocking over" Dief wasn't actually as easy as all that. Dief was a very popular guy and much of his popularity was based on a willingness to stand up to the US government. Here are some of the many progressive things that Dief did:
John Diefenbaker's "Made in Canada" Policies
Ousting Diefenbaker wasn't a simple task, it involved a lot of covert planning and many other actors besides Ball and Bundy played their part. The US regime-change elite put some of their best boys on the job, including some experienced folks from the CIA, the US State Department, top NATO brass, some US military officers and even the US ambassador in Ottawa. But of course, they didn't do it without help. There were influential Canadians who collaborated. The US coup-plotters teamed up with certain key people in Canada's Liberal Party, the Canadian media, and our military to "knock over" the elected Canadian government of the day. This is a historical fact.
The US has of course done so many similar operations -- before and since in dozens of other countries -- that it really shouldn't come as a surprise that they'd do it here in Canada. JFK hated Diefenbaker, at leasr that's what his brother Bobby said: "My brother really hated only two men in all his presidency. One was Sukarno [President of Indonesia] and the other was Diefenbaker.”
How could that be? Well, for one thing, Diefenbaker refused to allow the US military to put their nuclear weapons on our soil. But then Opposition Leader Lester Pearson turn around, reversing Liberal Party policy, and agreed to let the US deploy their nukes in Canada. In short, that's how he got himself in power. As soon as Pearson agreed to this key US demand, certain Americans pitched in and did what they do best, they engineered a regime change in Canada. There's nothing surprising is this really. It's all in a days work for some people.
You can read more details of this fascinating chapter in Canadian history here:
Four decades later, in 2004, the Liberal government of Canada had become a close working partner with the US on another coup, this one in Haiti. It is a shameful history of Liberal Party support for US-led coups at home and abroad. And, although Liberals may have cause to celebrate these two regime changes, many others in Canada and Haiti do not.
"Casey, mighty Casey, was advancing to the bat"
Bill, the question is this: Are you a Casey who will step up to the bat and try at least to do your part in this great game? Challenging "regime changes" led by the world's rogue superpower is a mighty big task no doubt, but maybe, just maybe, you might be the guy to knock the ball out of the field. So, what do you say? (I do realise by the way that in "Casey at the Bat: A Ballad of the Republic Sung in the Year 1888," the "Mighty Casey" ended up striking out. Oh well, things might be different this time. It's still worth a go. Even if things aren't hopeful, should we not at least try to do our bit to stop such travesties of justice and affronts to democracy that seem to reign supreme in this world? And, whether we succeed or not isn't really as important as having done the right thing and at least tried!
But it's still a tough question.
There are clear dangers that arise when one dares to go up to bat against the force of US regime changes. You probably don't need forewarning. If you do decide to take up this difficult challenge and if you approach any measure of success in this noble endeavor, you can be sure that the CIA (and others of its kind here in Canada) will put you in their sights. Is it worth that inevitable risk? You will have to make that decision.
Even that other Bill Casey -- Reagan's campaign manager cum CIA director -- took a mighty big fall just two short days before he was to go to bat before Congress to testify against Reagan regarding the Irangate/Contragate fiasco. When he was thus struck out from the game of politics by a sudden blow of brain cancer, some said it looked a tad suspicious, but they were -- no doubt -- merely paranoid conspiracy theorists.
Perhaps even harder to believe is the idea that another Canadian government in the near future might dare to stand up again against the US on such major foreign policy issues as coups and regime changes. We both know what would likely happen. The powers that be might just want to 'knock over" yet another Canadian government. Such is the lot of those who "speak truth to power."
Despite that risk, it is I think better to have had governments in power that the CIA overthrows (like Aristide in 2004 and Diefenbaker in 1963), than to have governments that are ready say "Aye Aye" to whatever illegal anti-democratic actions our friends and neighbours ask us to partake in. In other words, with apologies to Tennyson:
"'Tis better to have loved democracy and been overthrown by the CIA (with some Canadian help),
than never to have loved democracy at all."
With all this in mind, I'll conclude this epistle now by asking this:
If you are the kind of Bill Casey that will join us in this struggle, then please contact me or the CHAN representatives listed above. We would be more than happy to provide you with detailed information about Canada's role in the 2004 coup. And, we would be happy to work together with you to draw attention to the horrible debacle in Haiti that Canada helped wrought.
Editor, Press for Conversion!
Coordinator, Coalition to Oppose the Arms Trade (COAT)
PS. I've spent more than a year now investigating the many ways in which the Liberal government was involved in the 2004 coup and then backed the coup-installed regime. I published two issues of the COAT's magazine on this subject and am about to publish a third to expose various CIDA-funded groups in Canada that assisted the regime change.
Here are links to my research:
A Very Canadian Coup d’état in Haiti:
The Top 10 Ways that Canada’s Government Helped the 2004 Coup and its Reign of Terror
CIDA’s Key Role in Haiti’s 2004 Coup d’État:
Funding Regime Change, Dictatorship and Human Rights Atrocities,
If you'd like hard copies of these, just let me know. Thanks Bill.