William H.A. Willbond MSM, CD

NUCLEAR TEST GUINEA PIGS AND AGENT ORANGE VICTIMS ASSISTED AND SMALL VICTORIES DECLARED IN AFGHANISTAN

Prime Minister Harper continues to truthfully keep his word!
He’s assisting our veterans but very little is heard
About the help VAC[•] has given to each Agent Orange man
The PM is helping our soldier veterans as best as he can!

Soldiers have a claw back pension problem and at the Legion they shout
These facts I am certain our PM will have his people check out
Prime Minister Harper has been good to veterans – he has used Tory clout!
The Compensation for nuclear test victims has dispelled any doubt!

Gen[•] Gauthier has the cohunes to state we are winning small victories
And the Taliban is being defeated in that bleak land of sand fleas
Canadians give aid and security, building schools whilst at war
Our lads at the front they have really given a lot more!

We have KIAs[•] and CAS[•] wounded who courageously gave their all there
They are brave volunteers who are there because they care!
When they win these small victories to keep the Afghan people free
Let us all be like Gen Gauthier and celebrate each victory!

CANADIAN GENERAL: ‘WE’RE WINNING AFGHANISTAN WAR’

BY DAVID PUGLIESE Can West News Service

Canada is winning the war in Afghanistan and is making significant progress in rebuilding that South Asian country, says the general who commands the Canadian Forces mission in Kandahar.

But Lt.-Gen. Michel Gauthier, who heads the Canadian Expeditionary Force Command in Ottawa, warns that because Afghan insurgents are losing ground, they likely will resort to increasing the number of roadside bombs and suicide attacks in an attempt to inflict more casualties on troops.

“From a military perspective in the south of Afghanistan, in Kandahar specifically, we are winning, “ Gauthier said in an interview.

“We are winning where it matters most, where the people live. Where 90 per cent of the population is, we have a strong security influence in concert with our Afghan partners.”

Gauthier’s command, known in the Canadian Forces as CEFCOM, oversees all international military operations with its primary focus at this point being Afghanistan.

The state of the security situation in Afghanistan has been a hotly debated topic over the last several months. A recent United Nations report warned security in Afghanistan has deteriorated.

TIMES COLONIST FRIDAY NOVEMBER 30, 2007 A13

OTTAWA TO RECOGNIZE NUCLEAR-TEST VETERANS

BY MIKE BLANCHFIELD Can West News Service

OTTAWA — Canadian veterans exposed to radiation in the Nevada desert 50 years ago during atomic weapons tests will soon receive recognition and possibly compensation, Defence Minister Peter MacKay suggested yesterday.

“I hope to have an announcement very soon that will provide what I think is the necessary recognition for the extraordinary service of those atomic veterans, those members of the Canadian Forces who did exceptional duty for our country, “ said MacKay, emerging from a meeting of the Commons defence committee.

Asked whether financial compensation would be part of his announcement, MacKay replied: “I promise you it’s coming very soon. I’m sensitive to the fact that they have waited a long time. So out of respect for them I want to tell them first.”

Veterans had threatened to launch a class-action lawsuit against the federal government after reports emerged that MacKay’s predecessor in the defence portfolio, Gordon O’Connor, was planning a $24,000 lump-sum payment for each veteran.

Surviving soldiers have complained in the past that that degree of compensation was inadequate and that MacKay’s office was giving them the brush-off.

MacKay lauded the sacrifice of the veterans and stressed that he has taken a “hands-on” approach in recent days to resolve the matter. He said he met Wednesday with Veterans Affairs Minister Greg Thompson to discuss the plight of the veterans.

MacKay said the Conservatives would respond in a way that was in keeping with their record on responding to various crises and concerns surrounding the nee& of veterans since taking office, including the $96.5-million Agent Orange compensation package for veterans exposed to the toxic defoliant at CFB Gagetown in New Brunswick.

That package will give the 4,500 affected veterans a one-time payment of $20,000 each. Canada’s atomic veterans want $75,000 per person, the amount the U.S. government paid out in the 1980s to military personnel affected by the nuclear tests.