Breaking news this early Wednesday AM : CBC reports that CSIS has indications that cabinet ministers in two provinces under the influence of foreign countries , and some BC Liberal ministers may be under suspicion – Premier Gordon Campbell declines comment.
Wow. There are some advantages to waking up prior to 5 am, and this would be one of them- seeing the news ticker on the CBC site toss a headline about political governments in Canada being under the influence of the foreign countries, in particular China.
In fact, CBC has already contacted Premier Gordon Campbell for comment on this story, and he refused. As of yet, CBC seems to be the only local news on this developing story, and the timing cold not be more interesting as the Chinese president arrives in Canada for a visit. Here is an excerpt from the written story :
Some politicians under foreign sway: CSIS
Last Updated: Wednesday, June 23, 2010 | 12:45 AM ET Comments648Recommend387
“There are several municipal politicians in British Columbia and in at least two provinces there are ministers of the Crown who we think are under at least the general influence of a foreign government.”
Several members of B.C. municipal governments are also under suspicion, Richard Fadden, the director of the Canadian Security Intelligence Service, told CBC News in an exclusive interview.
“We’re in fact a bit worried in a couple of provinces that we have an indication that there’s some political figures who have developed quite an attachment to foreign countries,” Fadden said.
“The individual becomes in a position to make decisions that affect the country or the province or a municipality. All of a sudden, decisions aren’t taken on the basis of the public good but on the basis of another country’s preoccupations.”
He said the politicians and public servants see it as a long-standing relationship and have no idea they are being used.
There is also a video link to the interview with CSIS on the right hand side bar of the CBC page this story occurs on.
I also located this link: http://thechronicleherald.ca/Front/9016949.html that details more:
VICTORIA — National security experts are questioning the timing of a stunning allegation by the head of Canada’s spy agency that several Canadian politicians, including two provincial cabinet ministers, are under the control of foreign governments.
Richard Fadden, the director of the Canadian Security Intelligence Service, told CBC News Tuesday night that CSIS and the Privy Council Office are discussing the best way to inform those provinces.
Wesley Wark, a national security expert at the University of Toronto, was puzzled by CSIS rush to inform the public before contacting the jurisdictions involved.
“This puts CSIS dangerously out front in what could become a serious and damaging political issue,” Wark told The Canadian Press in an email early Wednesday.
“It’s not the business of CSIS to finger politicians it believes are threats to national security.”
Fadden declined to name the two cabinet ministers or their provinces, but he said a number of public servants in British Columbia are also under suspicion.
He said those politicians have not hidden their association with the foreign governments. But there have recently been indications that they are shifting their public policies because of the involvement with that particular country.
A veteran B.C. political scientist called the allegations against several B.C politicians “very serious” and said Canadians should be concerned.
“Given the source, there’s a certain amount of legitimacy attached to the suggestion,” said University of Victoria Prof. Norman Ruff.
“It suggests that public policy in this province isn’t necessarily being conducted in the best interests of British Columbians,” said Ruff.
“There are influences on public policy in British Columbia both on the local and provincial level which aren’t solely in the interests of British Columbians.”
Meanwhile, officials in British Columbia were caught off guard by the allegations that some among them could have a foreign government’s interests at heart.
B.C. Premier Gordon Campbell’s office said the premier would not be available for comment.
Municipal officials in Victoria and Vancouver appeared surprised at Fadden’s statement and declined to comment.
Now, while the story did not name names, if one were to contemplate such allegations, and contemplate which foreign country seems to hold a ton of political clout, China is definitely the first name that springs to mind . The BC Liberals have pursued a long relationship with the Chinese government, one that has always spoken to me of ulterior motive, when it appears China benefits far more than those workers here in BC.
We have long been exporting raw logs to China, even as more and more sawmills here in BC have closed, leaving workers unemployed and penniless.
Hell, the BC government even has a webpage dedicated to the their Asia Pacific Intiative, part of which is the building of the South Fraser Perimeter Road to facilitate the movement of goods being imported and exported into BC. You can read all of that here: http://www.gov.bc.ca/fortherecord/asia/as_economy.html?src=/economy/as_economy.html
The premier has travelled to China very frequently in the past few years on trade missions, as has forestry minister, Pat Bell – as this google search will detail : http://www.google.ca/#hl=en&q=pat+bell+to+china&aq=f&aqi=g10&aql=&oq=&gs_rfai=&fp=35789763958bd7d8
Just saying. Should be fun to watch where this one goes, but perhaps it might be the beginning of the end, of our gradual sell-off of BC assets to foreign stakeholders.
Let me leave you to think about what this shocking story means for all of us. And if you really want to see how far off into left field Gordon Campbell and his closest ministers are when it comes to what British Columbians want and need, watch this, their latest attempt at… hmmm. Ahh ? Oh bother, I don’t even know what they are attempting on this one. Just watch it and shake your head like I did.
Give it up Campbell. We just don’t care to hear anything you have to say any more.
*****Updated 1:23 pm .
Gordon Campbell has come out swinging at CSIS for the comments made during a CBC interview: http://www.vancouversun.com/news/Gordon+Campbell+slams+CSIS+director+over+foreign+infiltration+allegations/3191469/story.html
This can only be good, I say, either way – at least we might get some answers as to how this information was arrived at and who CSIS may or may not be investigating.