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Crucial Fact

  • His favourite word was reform.

Last in Parliament April 1997, as Reform MP for Nanaimo—Cowichan (B.C.)

Won his last election, in 1993, with 40% of the vote.

Statements in the House

Board Of Internal Economy February 2nd, 1994

Mr. Speaker, my question is for the representative on the Board of Internal Economy. In view of the Speaker's ruling on January 31, will the representative on the board undertake to discuss the subject of extra salaries with the board with a view to doing three things.

First, agreeing on a procedure for making all such expenditures-

The Late Jean-Louis Leduc January 28th, 1994

Mr. Speaker, in recognition of Mr. Leduc's service to Parliament, we would like to send our regrets and extend our deepest sympathies to Mrs. Leduc, their son Michel and the entire family.

Leaders' Salaries January 28th, 1994

Mr. Speaker, may I then as a supplementary ask the representative of this committee to furnish an explanation to this House in the forthcoming week?

Leaders' Salaries January 28th, 1994

Mr. Speaker, my question is for the Prime Minister.

The Ottawa Sun reports this morning that the Prime Minister and leaders of the other two parties that once existed in this House struck a secret deal so that they could continue receiving their extra salaries after the writ was dropped last year right through the election campaign. Normally any extra salary over and above the basic MP salary is cut off when the writ is dropped.

Will the Prime Minister explain to outraged Canadians this abuse of their tax dollars and make public a repayment schedule of those tax dollars paid to him as a result of this secret deal?

Cruise Missile Testing January 26th, 1994

Madam Speaker, I understand the thrust of the argument of my friend across the way. We do not get rid of tensions by hiding weapons. If the world could find a way of disarming so that everyone disarmed, I would be totally in favour of it. I said earlier that all people who have borne arms would feel the same way. They would be the first to put them on the pile.

We have not arrived at that point yet, it is sad to say. As soon as we can see it coming we should do something about it. If we could start to reduce the arms in the world I would be the first to join the club, but we have not arrived at that stage yet.


Cruise Missile Testing January 26th, 1994

Madam Speaker, I would like to start by complimenting the government on having this the second open debate which I presume is sincerely that, open and not as suggested by our colleague the hon. member for Burnaby-Kingsway that the fix is already in. I choose to believe there is honour on the other side and that we are going at this in an open manner.

I would also like to address a word to the hon. member for Notre-Dame-de-Grâce who alluded to the fact that maybe those in this corner of the House were in collusion and we were not having an open debate. Nothing could be further from the truth. In our debate yesterday on peacekeeping we had sincere differences of opinion even though there was some hanging together.

I assure the House it is entirely so with this current debate on the cruise missile. We each have our own opinion. It may happen that it sounds much of the same tune, but it is entirely our own version of what should be done.

The cold war is over. I have heard a lot of comments today about the cold war being over. Let us remind ourselves that we in the west won the cold war and we won it by being prepared. We did not have to shoot off weapons, missiles or anything of the sort. We won it through peaceful means but that meant being prepared and being armed and being armed better than the other side. So it is a successful strategy for peace.

Has the threat in the world diminished? Not on your life it has not. The world is in greater danger today. It is more unstable today than it has been for a long time.

I hear some debates in this House that are very idealistic in nature and I think we should preserve that to the degree that we can. Have our idealists. Have them say we should have peace. We all believe in peace. The soldier is the first one who will throw his arms on the pile if we can ever achieve that moment when we have agreement in the world to have peace. In the meantime the world is a rough place. Let us see how rough.

The Senate of this Parliament had put out a report, "Meeting new Challenges-Canada's Response to a New Generation of Peacekeeping" and I read from that: "The current crisis has its roots in the proliferation of states which followed the second world war. At the end of that war there were barely 60 states. Through decolonization that number increased to almost 160 states by 1988. With the break up of Yugoslavia and the Soviet Union the number is over 180 and climbing".

If you do not believe that, take a little tour of the world with me in your imagination. Let us go across the Pacific and look at the situation between northern Japan and Russia. It always has been tense. Move over a little to North and South Korea. They are still at odds. Look at all of China. We have not even begun to count the factions within China that are a potential problem. In fact look at the Chinas, the People's Republic as well as the other one.

If we go through Indo-China, Cambodia and Laos, what do we see? We see more potential problems. We could go to Indonesia and look at the problems it has had. If we flip over from there to Sri Lanka, we see a problem in Sri Lanka that has been there for a lot of years. If we go to India or Pakistan what do we see? Tension. We could go from there to the Middle East. I do not even have to describe the Middle East. It is there. It has been there over, over and over again. If we go from there to South Africa, the Republic of South Africa and all the countries of Africa, what do we see? We see potential for problems.

From there we can cross the Mediterranean and look at what we have in Europe today. We have the situation in the former Yugoslavia that we discussed yesterday. If we traverse the Atlantic Ocean, to finish our tour, and look at the Caribbean we still have trouble spots. We could look at Central America, a continuing problem, and even South America. Chile is quiet now. There is no war in Argentina. We do not hear much about the shining path in Peru, but we can bet our boots we will hear about it again.

The world is an unstable place. Until something magic happens to unite human beings to say that this is the way to peace, we must be prepared.

Let us go back in history a bit to look at our situations before World War I and before World War II. We have to relearn the lessons of history. We say: "This war is the war to end all wars. It is all done". It is not done. Until I see something very special come along I will know it is never done. Therefore let us be prepared.

We are talking about weapons systems such as the cruise. Several people have already differentiated between the fact that it can carry a conventional warhead and a nuclear one. Much of

the argument here has been concentrated on nuclear. It carries a conventional weapon and as such it is another excellent weapon in our total arsenal. We cannot predict which weapon in our arsenal we are going to reach for.

We could look at Vietnam. We saw the Americans bringing back C-47 aircraft and mounting Gatling guns in the open doorways. That tells us, if we look at that situation and at the gulf war, that we need a complete set of weapons in our arsenal. We do not know which one we will have to pick.

Thus it is incumbent on us to allow the Americans to continue the testing of this specific weapon in case it is needed. We have the technological lead in the west. How long will we continue to have that lead? We do not know. There are all sorts of other countries or groups working to exceed what we have. If we have a lead, hang on to it.

Finally I ask this question: Has Canada contributed its share to democracy or the defence of the west over the last number of years? If I look at my time before and after being in NATO, I think the answer is no. We have been cheapskating. We have always been down around Luxembourg. This gives us a chance as a country to pay off some of our debts.

I will leave it at that except to reiterate the point made by the hon. member for Saint John concerning proliferation. This refinement of the missile is a means to prevent proliferation if that happens to us.

Foreign Affairs January 25th, 1994

Mr. Speaker, I thank the hon. member for Burnaby-Kingsway.

I would agree to a discussion at least in the United Nations with respect to our troops and a revision of the rules to ensure that they are properly protective of our troops.

The thing that I believe the hon. member is missing is that for us to enforce a peace in Bosnia when there is no peace agreement there has the implication of bringing in tens of thousands of troops to have this happen. This is the point that I and some others have been making. We must first bring the warring factions in Bosnia-not in the other part of Croatia, but in Bosnia-to the table and insist that they come up with a plan. There has to be a plan before they can so-call, keep the peace.

Foreign Affairs January 25th, 1994

Mr. Speaker, since the hon. member is obviously in accord with my remarks, as apparently are our constituents, there really is no reply to be made.

Foreign Affairs January 25th, 1994

Mr. Speaker, I did not jump up when you called the hon. member for Bonavista-Trinity-Conception out of turn because I have such esteem for the gentleman, having known him over so many years. I was quite attentive to what it was he was going to say and would have held my peace.

I will be very brief about the customary niceties of this maiden speech in order to save time for debate material on this subject of peacekeeping.

First of all, I would like to congratulate the hon. member for Welland-St. Catharines-Thorold for being elected Speaker of this House and yourself for your appointment as acting speaker. As far as I was concerned, it was a small victory for democracy which we try to improve little by little.

I would also like to thank my wife, Paula, for 40 years of unflagging support for me and in particular for the last two years of support.

It is customary here to describe one's constituency. Let us just say that if one was to embellish all of the descriptions of constituencies heard so far in the House then that would describe Nanaimo-Cowichan. It cuts a swath of beauty from the tranquil Gulf Islands right across Vancouver Island to the wild and rugged west coast.

To my constituents in Nanaimo-Cowichan, I thank them for the honour of representing them in Ottawa. I will try to help you understand what is happening in Ottawa if I understand it myself. However, I will certainly represent your interests in Ottawa and not Ottawa's interests to you.

This brings us to the issue of the day which is peacekeeping and more particularly the situation in the former Yugoslavia. What do my constituents think? I believe that the people of Nanaimo-Cowichan, in common with many other Canadians, think as follows. We are proud of the record of Canadian peacekeepers. We are very proud of the troops who are there doing that job at the moment, the Royal 22e Régiment de Valcartier.

However, Canada seems to be stumbling at the moment because of a lack of international leadership and political will.

We also appear to be short of armed forces personnel to properly meet all current obligations. Therefore, the government's proposed review of foreign affairs and defence policies is timely and welcomed. We must determine if our peacekeeping activities are in accordance with these policies or should these policies be changed.

My constituents see in the Bosnian situation the enmity of hundreds of years of religious and ethnic differences. There appears to be no way to end this hatred. At the same time, Canadians recognize that enmity of this sort is not confined to the Balkans. It is a world-wide problem which leads to atrocities and wars. The world community therefore must find better ways of dealing with it. The United Nations, NATO and the European Community are not perceived as being effective in dealing with the problem.

In response to the hon. Minister of Foreign Affairs' statement this morning that he had been talking to his colleagues in France and Britain, it would be helpful to this House for us to know in

what detail. I am really curious to know what France and Britain are doing and what are their thoughts. What are the thoughts of all of the European Community vis-a-vis this terrible situation in the old Yugoslavia?

My constituents have images of Canadian soldiers trying hard to help and sometimes being humiliated in the process. This is very much resented, to the point where some say: "Let us get our personnel out of there". Balancing this is the view that our troops do prevent many atrocities in their own sector and enable humanitarian aid to be given. Some therefore say that we must stay for humanitarian reasons alone. These views of my constituents seem to be in consonance with the views of other Canadians.

There are factors other than my constituents' views to be considered with regard to Bosnia. With regard to Bosnia, as opposed to Croatia where at least there is a peace accord to keep, take this into consideration. Without a change of attitude on the part of the combatants, there appears to be no solution. If the status quo is maintained peacekeepers could be there indefinitely.

The next point is that the withdrawal of peacekeepers leads to the spectre of genocide and more atrocities. Complete withdrawal leads to the spectre of war as some of the surrounding countries such as Albania, Bulgaria, Hungary, Romania, Greece, Turkey and the former Russian states move in to help their particular friends.

Against this background we must identify our role as parliamentarians. First, we must listen to our constituents. Second, we must with haste, re-examine our foreign affairs and defence policies which the government has stated it will do. Third, we must keep the Canadian public informed. Fourth, as parliamentarians, we must show leadership in finding a solution.

It seems to me that leadership is the key if there is any solution to be found. We in this Chamber must take the lead and we as a country must take the lead.

Therefore if the status quo is unacceptable, we must change it. The protagonists in Bosnia must be forced to the negotiating table and kept there until they come up with a peace plan that others can supervise. Canada alone cannot make this happen, but surely the world community can.

Therefore it seems to me that Canada must use its credibility and its stature as a peacekeeper to provide the necessary leadership. We must first talk with the United States, Britain and France and then with NATO, the NATO associates which are coming on line, and the United Nations. We must insist that collectively we come up with a plan that will force the creation of a peace plan by the combatants. If we cannot achieve this, Canada should then think of withdrawing.

I will conclude by underlining the earlier words of my colleague, the hon. member for Saanich-Gulf Islands, that more peace talks are scheduled in Geneva on February 10.

Canada must take the lead by hosting a conference here in Ottawa before that date. Participants should include all countries with forces now in the former Yugoslavia. This conference which we propose must of itself or through the United Nations issue a clear ultimatum to the belligerents that either they come up with an enforceable peace plan or they accept the withdrawal of UN forces. If the conference cannot agree to this and show concrete progress toward peace in Bosnia, Canada should announce its intention to withdraw at the end of its current commitment in April.

The Late Senator Chesley Carter January 21st, 1994

Mr. Speaker, I am sorry if I was out of order in rising before the Bloc Quebecois members. I do not know, but I think they have the right to speak before I.