Helmut Harry Loewen
Alan's right about Harper's hypocrisy. In 1989 Harper was among the founders of the Far Right Northern Foundation among whose main goals were concerted opposition to the release of Mandela, rejection of the policy of sanctions against the Apartheid regime, and support for pro-Apartheid, Ku Klux Klan, and neo-Nazi groups operating in Canada. The research in Murray Dobbin's book 'Preston Manning and the Reform Party', University of Lethbridge sociologist Trevor Harrison's studies and Warren Kinsella's 'Web of Hate: Inside Canada's Far Right Network' is instructive in this regard. Let's also not forget that Calgary Conservative MP Rob Anders, who continues to enjoy Harper's endorsement despite attempts in his constituency to remove him, was the only Member of Parliament to reject the honorary citizenship which Canada, through Prime Minister Jean Chrétien, accorded Mandela in 2001, calling him a 'communist and terrorist.' When Mandela delayed his departure from Ottawa to meet with Anders, the Member refused. Harper's speech in the House of Commons was creepy with his talk about 'the phenomenon of racial discrimination' as having passed. The 'phenomenon'? Sounded like a poorly drafted lecture at the Calgary School. Harper's early political history is mired in the fetid swamp of racism and fascism out of which the Reform/Alliance crawled. He should have the decency, should he be able to muster such, to forego attending the funeral of Nelson Mandela.