On a Fox “News” show Red Eye with Greg Gutfeld the host and his panelists called Canada a “ridiculous country” and made light of Canada’s sacrifices in Afghanistan.
The remarks came after Canadian Lt. Gen. Andrew Leslie had said the military would “have to explore the possibility of taking a short operational break” after Canada’s mission in Afghanistan ends in 2011 because of personnel and equipment shortages.
“The Canadian military wants to take a breather to do some yoga, paint landscapes, run on the beach in gorgeous white capri pants…. Isn’t this the perfect time to invade this ridiculous country? They have no army.”
Clearly he has no understanding of “operational” break. It means no more fighting in wars for a while, not that we’ll “have no army.”
His panelists were all equally absurd, having a good laugh at all the people who have died in Afghanistan.
Doug Benson said, “I didn’t even know they were in the war. I thought that’s where you go if you don’t want to fight” (laughing off Canada allowing war-resistors and moral objectors into our country).
Gutfeld then arrogantly asked, “Would Canada be able to get away with this if it didn’t share a border with the most powerful country in the universe? Isn’t Canada doing what most of Europe does anyway, which is just rely on the U.S.A. in case anything bad happens?”
Another panelist, Monica Crowley, said that yes, of course Canada can only survive because of the “security backdrop of the United States.”
And Bill Schulz went even further in displaying that trademark ignorance by saying, “We have police, they have Mounties. Our cops ride heavily armoured cars [sic], their cops ride horses. We have bullet-proof vests, they have wonderful little red jackets that can be seen a mile away. This is not a smart culture, Greg.”
First of all, Mounties are police. Royal Canadian Mounted Police. It’s a national police service that, according to the RCMP web site: “[Is] unique in the world since it is a national, federal, provincial and municipal policing body.”
Those “little red jackets” and horses are mostly symbolic and are seen in parades and other public relations events. The RCMP wears police uniforms (including bullet-proof vests) and rides in cars. Like the military has combat fatigues and military dress, the RCMP has its uniforms and its symbolic dress.
Back to the fun right-wing pundits belittling Canada. Crowley went on to say that the Canadian military will be getting “manicures and pedicures.” Oh, and of course she mentioned that we’re “up there” in the “frigid cold,” like that has anything to do with anything. I’m surprised she didn’t say we all live in igloos.
The first thing that comes to mind in response to all this is, who the hell is Greg Gutfeld? Or, for that matter, Doug Benson, Bill Schulz, and Monica Crowley? Let’s all collectively not google them to find out.
The second thing that comes to mind is this: Not doing much to repair the world’s perception of Americans there folks!
But the most important thing is this: Canada has 2,500 soldiers in Afghanistan and 116 of them have died. The death rate among Canadian soldiers is four times that of American soldiers because the Canadians have been fighting in one of the most violent provinces, in the south.
These Fox “News” panelists seem to think of Canada as some differently abled little sibling.
Canada prides itself on being a peace-keeping nation, and it fights when it has to. We were in both WWI and WWII (and we entered those wars before the Americans did). We chose not to get involved in Vietnam or Iraq because neither of those countries was a threat to us or to the United States. The reason we went to war in Afghanistan is because the strike on September 11th can be traced back there, and we were morally obligated to get involved because the U.S. is our NATO ally. Canada is morally obligated not to get involved in unnecessary and/or pre-emptive wars.
This is all so ridiculous I can’t believe I am even giving it the meager amount of attention it will get here on this blog, but I think ignorance and absurdity like this must be called out.