Definition: When world leaders (for example GW Bush, or Stephen Harper) rail against detention and imprisonment of adult "political prisoners" in China, or Iraq, or parts of Africa and Eastern Europe, but then turn around and fight FOR the continued detention of a CHILD SOLDIER!
Today, that Canadian "chicken-hawk" - Stephen Harper - had the moral ineptitude to stand up to a Supreme Court of Canada decision demanding the release and repatriation from illegal detention, of Omar Khadr.
To use an old Conservative attack meme (remember the attack ads on Martin?) - does Stephen Harper support child abuse? How do we mean? Well, according to the United Nations (of which we are a part) Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the Declaration Of Rights of The Child (both of which we and the US are signatories), there are specific regulations and guidelines that the CIVILIZED NATIONS OF EARTH have decided to dictate in cases of capture of child soldiers. Torture, imprisonment, and general abuse of children is an atrocious crime worldwide. We often speak out about the fate of child soldiers in places like Bosnia, Somalia, Niger, or Congo, yet, when we have one of our own citizens captured by a foreign government - a government willing to release him into our custody - he balk, stonewall, and KNOWING FULL WELL THAT TORTURE HAS TAKEN PLACE, fight to leave him in the gulag he's been sent to.
Supporting the continued illegal detention of child soldiers - even when your own Supreme Court says it is illegal to do so - is certainly abuse of that individual. In this case, a Canadian child.
There are many examples in Western public life, of former child soldiers making good - including this young chap in the UK. Several child soldiers live normal (as normal as they can be) lives in Canada - rescued from lives of hate, fear, and abuse in Africa.
Khadr - no matter what attrocities his horrible father involved him in - was a child soldier, and a victim of his familial loyalties. Any good kid, who faithfully follows the dictates of his parents can be brainwashed into a similar situation - be it combat, minor crimes at home, etc. Khadr is the victim of a family which should never have put him at peril (and if he was brought home when he was first detained Child Services of Ontario should have removed him from the family home), but also the victim of a pair of angry conservative governments (Bush and Harper) who decided it was better to torture a child, and continue to rouse the rabble in Canada and USA. They succeeded for about 6 years, but eventually, denying the UN Human Rights Charter does have it's consequences. Now, having been in prison most of his teen formative years, we will have a troubling personality to deal with. Harper and Bush created more problems than solutions with their "war on terror", and this is just one example.
Saddam Hussein met his fate for his war crimes and crimes against humanity. We still need to capture the supreme nutjob (Bin Laden), but Bush, et al should also have to pay for their crimes - including civilian deaths, capture and torture of child soldiers, and torture of "enemy combatants" in general. Outspokenly complicit "leaders" like Harper should also be called to task. It's really no wonder the US continues to run from the International Criminal Courts. Hopefully Barack Obama can bring "hope" and "change" to this buccaneering policy as well...