LETTER: Bring back Canada’s peaceable reputation

Reader Rod Retzlaff says if ISIS is dangerous, it is because we attacked them.

In between dodging “Duffy balls,” Stephen Harper has promised to spend more on the military by increasing the number of reservists in the country. I don’t agree with war, but I am not naive enough to think that Canada does not need a strong defensive force to protect our borders, help out in domestic disasters, and to provide peacekeepers when called on by the United Nations.

I am not proud, however, to be living in a nation that sends out high tech machines to attack others in the world on the basis of “If we don’t attack them, they will probably attack us.” I do not believe in this first strike mentality.

Is ISIS a threat to Canadians? Now, they probably are, but only because we decided to join the Americans and attack them first. That done, they have every right to retaliate.

I do not believe that ISIS was a threat to Canada before we attacked them. Their focus is uniting the Arab world, not taking over Canada. The west is responsible for much of the turmoil in Syria and Iraq, but I do not believe the problems will ever be solved by western troops or western bombs. It seems to me that the only ones who can solve the problems in Syria and Iraq are the people of Syria and Iraq. They would likely be a lot better off if we had minded our own business in the first place.

Stephen Harper believes in the old post-Second World War theory that “If you desire peace you should prepare for war.” We have lived by that credo for 70 years, and the result is that every little tinpot dictator and many Western countries as well, are armed to the teeth with the most unimaginably horrid weapons. This is not the path to peace. This is the path to more, devastating, horrible, war. If we stick with these war-mongers, we will never be safe.

For a time after the Second World War, Canada was a peaceable nation. I want that reputation back.

Rod Retzlaff

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