Tall, Dark, and Mysterious

4/2/2005

What a waste.

File under: Character Writ Large, Home And Native Land, I Read The News Today, Oh Boy. Posted by Moebius Stripper at 8:10 am.

Oh, Canada: I’m a bit behind on this, but 1) no one ever claimed that TD&M was a news service, and 2) who here actually follows the minutae of the Canadian news, be honest now, so it’s not like this is old to most of you. Anyway: everyone who knows me personally knows there’s no one in this world I respect more than Romeo Dallaire, the Canadian General who commanded the 1994 intervention in Rwanda. I saw him speak last year, and was humbled by this man who embodied everything a soldier should be: but profoundly respectful of the people he was charged with serving, and with a courage that sprung from a completely moral dedication to the missions in which he served. In the months leading up to the Rwanda genocide he worked tirelessly to get the support from the world he knew he would need; when he did not receive it, he did as much as he could with few supplies and only a few hundred troops. His book - deserving of every five-star review it received on Amazon - lays out in detail his heroic efforts to save thousands of lives within the constraints of a strapped and corrupt system; nevertheless, to this day he feels he was ineffective, and that he personally failed at the task trusted to him.

And so, I mean no disrespect when I wonder why he would accept an appointment to an instutution that has never been anything but ineffective - at least, not in the last half-century. Dallaire embodies exactly what the Canadian military should be; when I heard him speak he spoke eloquently of the role that Canada, as the only bilingual middle-power country without a colonial past, could and should serve abroad. If he’s going to take a political appointment in his retirement, then it should be as a military advisor to the federal government, not as a senator…then again, I guess he’s doomed to be ineffective on that front, as well.

Shameful, that this is what my country does with its heroes.