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In the age of Wikileaks why would you even attempt to tell citizen-sailors they can't have an opinion on something like this? Very unfair and hypocritical of the admirals who believe they alone are entitled to a voice on this one. Admiral McFurious:
By ALTHIA RAJ, Parliamentary Bureau
Last Updated: December 9, 2010 5:23pm
OTTAWA — The head of Canada’s navy warned all naval personnel to keep their personal opinions to themselves after a junior officer was caught e-mailing a senator about Maritime Command’s proposed name change.
Vice-Admiral Dean McFadden sent sailors and naval officers a stern memo Wednesday after the chain of command was informed that the junior naval officer was also using his department of national defence e-mail account to encourage colleagues with similar opinions to e-mail the senator.
“It is neither appropriate nor helpful for any individual member of the command to respond to solicitation for your opinion," McFadden wrote. "As a private individual, you can have any opinion you wish; as members of the service you neither advocate for a personal view nor encourage your compatriots to do so."
Liberal Sen. Joseph Day has been encouraging serving naval personnel to e-mail him their preference for changing the naval force's name from Maritime Command to the Royal Canadian Navy, as he prefers, or, as another Liberal senator suggests, to Canadian Navy.
"I have received hundreds of e-mails from junior officers and non-commissioned officers, virtually all the messages I received were in support of R.C.N.," he told QMI Agency Thursday.
Day believes Maritime Command is trying to "surreptitiously" change its name to Canadian Navy "without it being the law" and the latest move by the navy could shut up dissenting opinions.
The Senate committee on national security and defence is deliberating a motion to encourage Defence Minister Peter MacKay to change the name Maritime Command to Canadian Navy.
Let us first understand who is really feeling the heat here - not the junior naval officer in question, but the head of the navy himself who is losing control of the situation he so badly is trying to control.
All these CF admirals who don't give one whiff for the old RCN, are using their commanding position to chill the ranks into submission, not because of established rules for solicitation, but because most of the rank and file would apparently prefer the RCN contrary to testimony provided by the admirals themselves, who for some truly mystifying reason do not want to go back to the Royal honour, and are clearly very distraught about where this might be going. Boo hoo, how tragic.
For example, Admiral Mifflin breathlessly testified on November 15th to the Senate Committee that he had not met one person in favour of the RCN (not one!), to which Senator Plett responded: well, you just met one! We of course know of five thousand, one hundred and thirty-six on our badly advertised petition, but the admiral didn't know of a single one, as laughable and ridiculous that sounds, that's what he said.
Had the junior officer in question been for CN, Admiral McFadden's response would have been different you can be sure ("I have completed my poll on the issue, Minister, and he wants CN"). These admirals are clearly in cahoots with one another, and are using their position to control the discussion at the Naval Officers Association, the Navy League of Canada, and perhaps even the Dominion Executive of the Royal Canadian Legion, and wherever else they sip their Chardonnay nowadays. We are winning the battle here, and they don't like it one bit.