Tuesday, October 12, 2010

The Right Hand Knoweth not What the Left Hand Scratcheth

Hardly has fey blade Guy Giorno left the Prime Minister's Office than the caca whacks into the big turney thing. Minister of Foreign Affairs, Larry Cannon, who had been involved for months with Emirate and Etihad Airlines negotiating extended landing rights at Canadian Airports, took the side of Air Canada that such an extension was 'bad for business' and promptly got Canada kicked out of its middle east supply base in Dubai.

The eviction was so sudden that the Minister of Defence, the CinC and the Veterans Affairs Minister found themselves having to fly on to Rome when a planned stop at Base Mirage was panned by the Emiris. The three had been winging it back home for Thanksgiving when the Emirates terminated their air transit rights.

Now the mlitary has 27 days to get their crap out of town. So that means the Ukrainians are going to make a bundle (again) renting us some Ruslans to transport the material to a new supply base in Cyprus or Turkey. Well, what the hey, we were planning to pull out of 'Mirage' anyway. The contract with the Emirates had been allowed to lapse back in June.

But talk about ungrateful, eh? After DoD has spent all that money flying grieving families, and VIPs, out to the middle east 'staging area' on their way to Kandahar, first class on the 'deluxe'  Emirate Airlines A380's. You'd think all that business would be worth more than mere 'skywards points'. But then Emirate is the only airline, including our flagship Air Canada, flying direct from AbuDhabi to Canada. As such,  it already attracts more than its share of  flying customers - i.e. anybody wishing to avoid an extra stop in Europe. And with what 27 000 Canadians residing in the Emirates - why not? Duty free is as cheap, or cheaper, than in Europe anyway, as is the cost of the ticket.

But where does that leave our soldiers - whose every Joe and Louis, not to mention all the other military unmentionables, have to come through Mirage, or some awkwardly busy US base? Well, not to  fear, says the DoD. All those frozen Timbits are already being routed through Akrotiri or Dhekelia anyway. From there it's just a short whiz across Turkey, and a couple of former Russian -stans before jetting over the Pamirs into sunny Kandahar. Hardly take a gallon more of Avgas. And, besides, those Cypriots have soft spot for Canuck 'peacekeepers', especially the drunk kind, decompressing with some combat pay in their pocket. A fellow can have a high time with those Moldavan tourist gals or sun-worshipping Baltic types, unless, he gets punchy and upsets their Cypriot 'boyfriends'. There's been more than one Canuck run afoul a Cypriot slammer after a little post-roto celebration.

So if it's no problem for the military, why should it be a problem for anybody else, eh? If the soldiers aren't complaining, why should those who have so much pre-paid freedom? Well,  maybe it's because this is just how Steve Harper and his gang of merry idiots operate, by pissing people off. Sure it's ok to do that in Canada, liberals deserve it anyway. But when you start pissing off people in other parts of the world out of pure stupidity, well where does that end? **It might just mess-up your plans to put a Canadian ass in the catbird seat at the Security Council. Multicultural inclusivity aside, Canada has developed a reputation that aligns it with what is considered, by some, to be the only 'force for good' in the world. So that means many of  those other 'little' voters at the UN are going to blackball you on principle.

As if getting blackballed by AbuDhabi isn't blackballing enough.

** Like psychotic or what? It was just announced that Canada is 'giving up' its effort to gain a seat on the Security Council. This would have been the first time in 50 years that Canada has sat on that body. Harper invested two speeches at UN forums and sent Larry Cannon to New York to schmooze up some support. I would imagine that the Abu Dhabi kerfluffle has put paid to the bumming about a Canadian in the president's chair next year. Sort of reminiscent of the doofus who 'owned the mountain', and the doofi who 'owned the podium', at last year's Olympics. Gotta love those Tories, they're all talk, as long as there's a buck in it.

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