First off is a recommendation that you read Haroon Siddiqui's "West Speaks with a Forked Tongue on the Arab Spring." It's a pretty clear and coherent defence of what is happening in Egypt with a clear and coherent critique of Western hypocrisy:
We profess fidelity to democracy, especially in the Arab world. But our commitment seems to come with the caveat that the will of the people is acceptable only if it confirms our prejudices. If not — as in Egyptians’ choice of the Muslim Brotherhood for both parliament and the presidency — some of our leaders, thinkers and media eminences get antsy and irrational.
They begin to echo the logic of Algeria, Iran, Israel and the dictatorships and monarchies of the Middle East that have resisted democratic outcomes.
In varying degrees, Barack Obama, Harper and other western leaders have paid lip service to the Arab Spring. They have failed to stand by pro-democracy forces at key times.
They have been silent on the series of measures taken by the ruling Egyptian military junta to consolidate its power and even attempt to derail Mohammed Morsi’s election as president.
Yet Washington lectured him on the need to respect the rights of women and Coptic Christians.
This is not surprising coming from a capital that was complicit in the crimes of Hosni Mubarak, who banned the Brotherhood and jailed and tortured hundreds of its members for years.
And on and on it goes. Check it out.
Second is an important letter to the Toronto Star from one Lee A. McKenna that they titled "Questioning 'star performer' tag."
Re: Fantino takes over from Oda, July 5If one puts together (1) the Star’s excellent piece on the Afghan detainee inquiry report (which properly excoriated the government for its unprecedented dodging, weaving, political brinkmanship, refusals to produce documents, denials of access, over-the-top redactions based on irrational and unfounded “national security” concerns, preventing witnesses from testifying, launching legal challenges, gagging of witnesses) and (2) Chris Alexander’s protestation that the government provided “exceptional co-operation” to the inquiry commissioners, with (3) reporter Alan Woods’ report that the ex-diplomat, rumoured as Bev Oda’s replacement at CIDA, is considered a “star performer,” one wonders what he’s doing that makes him a star. Perhaps he is understudy to Peter Kent’s Teflon approach to problems. And we get Julian Fantino in the helping-others portfolio. This should be interesting.Lee A. McKenna, Toronto
I wrote about Chris Alexander before.
I called him a piece of shit. He's definitely not a "star." More like a black hole.