Author Topic: 16 Jan 2017 - VCDS relieved of duty  (Read 41941 times)

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Offline Old Sweat

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Re: 16 Jan 2017 - VCDS relieved of duty
« Reply #100 on: March 07, 2017, 15:40:14 »
Is this legit? If it is, why has it not been picked up by other media? This story from the Toronto Star, reproduced under the Fair Dealings provision of the Copyright Act, claimed that LGen Alain Parent has been appointed VCDS.

Canada's military gets new senior commander
Canada’s military has a new second-in-command to take the place of Vice-Admiral Mark Norman, who has been sidelined under a cloud.

By BRUCE CAMPION-SMITH Ottawa Bureau
Mon., March 6, 2017
OTTAWA — Canada’s military has a new second-in-command to take the place of Vice-Admiral Mark Norman, who has been sidelined under a cloud.

Lt.-Gen. Alain Parent was named acting vice-chief of defence staff Monday by Gen. Jonathan Vance, the chief of defence staff.

Parent is currently is the deputy commander, Allied Joint Force Command Naples, a position he has held since July 2015. He will assume his new role on May 30.

Norman was abruptly removed from his post in January and Vice-Admiral Ron Lloyd, the commander of the Royal Canadian Navy, has tapped to do the vice-chief job, too. Monday’s announcement allows Lloyd to return to his navy job full time.

Vance has been tight-lipped about the circumstances surrounding Norman’s sudden departure, saying only several weeks ago that it was the “right thing to do.”

High-profile Toronto lawyer Marie Henein is now representing Norman and last week, she issued a statement declaring that the long-time navy veteran, “looks forward to being cleared and unequivocally denies any wrongdoing.”

Parent joined the air force in 1979 and went on to fly helicopters before rising through the ranks in a series of command roles.

Offline Flavus101

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Re: 16 Jan 2017 - VCDS relieved of duty
« Reply #101 on: March 07, 2017, 16:51:18 »
The good old National Post is reporting this as well.

(Link withheld for legal reasons)...

Offline Tcm621

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Re: 16 Jan 2017 - VCDS relieved of duty
« Reply #102 on: March 07, 2017, 20:20:11 »
It's legit. I saw it on the DIN today.

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Offline FSTO

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Re: 16 Jan 2017 - VCDS relieved of duty
« Reply #103 on: March 08, 2017, 10:18:24 »
It appears that both sides in this are doubling down.
Admiral Norman hiring a real shark is telling his superiors that he is not going to take one for the team. The release of the story that most security leaks come from the Navy is the senior leadership (IMHO) setting up the evidence for their reasons why Norman was relieved.

I have a feeling that this is not going to end well for either side but there may be silver lining in this cloud. That our procurement system is so FUBARD that this fight will finally show the public how unbelievably bad we are at buying stuff and that we have to burn the whole thing down and start fresh.

Offline Remius

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Re: 16 Jan 2017 - VCDS relieved of duty
« Reply #104 on: March 08, 2017, 10:22:05 »
It appears that both sides in this are doubling down.
Admiral Norman hiring a real shark is telling his superiors that he is not going to take one for the team. The release of the story that most security leaks come from the Navy is the senior leadership (IMHO) setting up the evidence for their reasons why Norman was relieved.

I have a feeling that this is not going to end well for either side but there may be silver lining in this cloud. That our procurement system is so FUBARD that this fight will finally show the public how unbelievably bad we are at buying stuff and that we have to burn the whole thing down and start fresh.

The Public already knows.  They just don't care. 
Optio

Offline FSTO

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Re: 16 Jan 2017 - VCDS relieved of duty
« Reply #105 on: March 08, 2017, 10:37:37 »
The Public already knows.  They just don't care.

You would think that the BILLIONS we waste because our procurement system is so FUBARD would cause rioting in the streets. But you are right, nobody cares.

Idiots, the lot of them.

Offline Flavus101

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Re: 16 Jan 2017 - VCDS relieved of duty
« Reply #106 on: March 08, 2017, 16:20:08 »
You would think that the BILLIONS we waste because our procurement system is so FUBARD would cause rioting in the streets. But you are right, nobody cares.

Idiots, the lot of them.

I don't think the public quite fully understands how messed up the system is. I concur that they understand it is not running how it should, I just don't believe they have wrapped their head around how bad it is.

I am also starting to think that the public is starting to accept that the government misspending a couple billion here and there is the new norm in certain government programs. It happens so frequently that it will have to take a major misstep in order to stimulate the public and get their attention.

Online Loachman

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Re: 16 Jan 2017 - VCDS relieved of duty
« Reply #107 on: March 08, 2017, 18:19:15 »
You would think that the BILLIONS we waste because our procurement system is so FUBARD would cause rioting in the streets. But you are right, nobody cares.

Idiots, the lot of them.

Nobody's kicking up a fuss over the billions to be wasted buying eighteen F18s for politically-created reasons, because if dreamy Justin likes them, they must be alright.

Offline Navy_Pete

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Re: 16 Jan 2017 - VCDS relieved of duty
« Reply #108 on: March 08, 2017, 18:51:36 »
I find Ken Hansen pops up a lot as a 'SME' for this stuff, do they have him on the payroll as convenient shill on call?  He's pretty off the mark for the most part; whenever I see him in a story confirming the half baked theories I immediate disregard the whole thing.

Offline jollyjacktar

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Re: 16 Jan 2017 - VCDS relieved of duty
« Reply #109 on: March 08, 2017, 19:52:51 »
I find Ken Hansen pops up a lot as a 'SME' for this stuff, do they have him on the payroll as convenient shill on call?  He's pretty off the mark for the most part; whenever I see him in a story confirming the half baked theories I immediate disregard the whole thing.
They must.  As he has them convinced he's the crap.
I'm just like the CAF, I seem to have retention issues.

Offline dapaterson

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Re: 16 Jan 2017 - VCDS relieved of duty
« Reply #110 on: April 05, 2017, 22:52:29 »
Globe and Mail reports that Project Anchor, the RCMP investigation, is drawing conclusions.

Quote
The RCMP allege Vice-Admiral Mark Norman violated the Criminal Code by leaking government secrets, an accusation that arises from a 16-month probe into the release of information about cabinet deliberations to a Quebec-based shipbuilder that wanted Ottawa to stop delaying approval of a $667-million contract for an interim naval supply ship.A breach of trust conviction under Section 122 of the Criminal Code carries a sentence of up to five years in prison.

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/politics/rcmp-accuse-vice-admiral-norman-of-leaking-cabinet-secrets/article34611326/?cmpid=rss1&utm_source=dlvr.it&utm_medium=twitter
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Online MilEME09

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Re: 16 Jan 2017 - VCDS relieved of duty
« Reply #111 on: April 06, 2017, 01:13:41 »
Quote
Correspondence shows Norman angered by attempted political interference in shipbuilding contract



Correspondence obtained by CTV News shows Vice-Admiral Mark Norman had considered resigning over attempted political interference in a shipbuilding contract by Irving Shipyards, before he was ultimately removed from his duties.

Norman was the vice chief of the defence staff when Chief of the Defence Staff Jonathan Vance temporarily removed him from his duties on Jan. 9. The military has never provided an explanation for Norman’s suspension.

Sources say Irving wrote to multiple cabinet ministers in the newly minted Liberal government in November of 2015, trying to scuttle a multimillion dollar plan to rebuild a desperately needed supply ship for the Royal Canadian Navy that had been awarded to competitor Davie Shipyards.

Expressing his frustration, Norman wrote: “This is sole [sic] destroying. I might be prepared to resign over this. I can't keep playing along much longer.”

Documents related to the procurement plan, known as Project Resolve, were leaked to media and the defence industry. CTV News has learned that the leaks prompted an RCMP probe, which led to Norman’s suspension.

The ongoing probe is being carried out by the Sensitive and International Investigations unit, which deals with politically sensitive cases.

Sources say Mounties descended on Norman's home at about 7:30 a.m. on January 9, surprising the admiral and his wife as they were about to leave for work. RCMP officers blocked Norman’s vehicle in his driveway.

The RCMP had a warrant for all electronic devices in the home. They seized mobile phones and computers from Norman and his wife, and those items are still in police custody.

Fifteen months later, the RCMP has laid no charges and is still interviewing people, including government officials and lobbyists in Ottawa.

One of the reporters who received leaked information is now serving in the defence minister's office and works closely on the shipbuilding file. Defence Minister Harjit Sajjan’s office refused to comment on departmental staffing and said the minister stands by Norman’s suspension.

Sources say Norman is not being investigated for breaching national security or seeking financial gain. Those close to him say he’s being scapegoated.

In a statement to CTV News, Irving said they did not contact the RCMP, nor have they been contacted. They did not respond to questions about alleged attempts to lobby the government on the shipbuilding issue.

With a report from CTV’s Mercedes Stephenson in Ottawa



The story keeps getting deeper
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Offline milnews.ca

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Re: 16 Jan 2017 - VCDS relieved of duty
« Reply #112 on: April 06, 2017, 05:50:52 »
Not as juicy, but still interestingly meaty, details from the G&M, with the usual reminder that NONE of this has been proven in a court of law ...
Quote
The RCMP allege Vice-Admiral Mark Norman violated the Criminal Code by leaking government secrets, an accusation that arises from a 16-month probe into the release of information about cabinet deliberations to a Quebec-based shipbuilder that wanted Ottawa to stop delaying approval of a $667-million contract for an interim naval supply ship.A breach of trust conviction under Section 122 of the Criminal Code carries a sentence of up to five years in prison.

The RCMP investigation into the leaks – called Project Anchor – has not yet resulted in charges against Vice-Adm. Norman, who has served in the navy for 36 years.

On Wednesday, an Ottawa court released an affidavit and supporting documents, including e-mails, that police used to obtain a warrant to search Vice-Adm. Norman’s home earlier this year.

The documents show that the criminal probe has expanded to include interviews of prominent Ottawa lobbyists and executives of the Chantier-Davie Canada Inc. shipyard in Levis, Que. The Mounties also interviewed senior cabinet ministers, including Treasury Board President Scott Brison and top mandarins.

“Norman is suspected of having committed a Criminal Code section 122 breach of trust offence,” RCMP Corporal Matthieu Boulanger wrote in an affidavit to obtain a search warrant to raid the Vice-Admiral’s Ottawa home on Jan. 9. The Mounties also allege Vice-Adm. Norman violated the Security of Information Act.

The RCMP affidavit filed in the Ottawa courthouse alleges that Chantier-Davie shipyard and a sister company were attempting to press the Trudeau cabinet to stick with a contract the former Conservative government ordered in the final day of the October, 2015, federal election campaign.

Soon after taking power in November, 2015, the Trudeau Liberals put the supply ship project on hold after receiving a letter of complaint from Irving Shipbuilding Inc., which already had a multibillion-dollar contract to build the navy’s new fleet of warships. This delay meant that cabinet might look at other, lower bids, threatening Chantier-Davie’s contract.

The heavily redacted affidavit provides little idea of what the RCMP allege are Vice-Adm. Norman’s motives. The senior naval officer, however, last year said delays in shipbuilding programs had hurt the navy. “It’s important to keep in mind that [the delays were] completely avoidable,” he said in 2016.

Irving Shipbuilding CEO James Irving tried to persuade the Trudeau Liberals to kill the sole-source contract with Chantier-Davie, arguing that his firm had offered a lower-cost option. Another shipbuilding firm, Vancouver-based Seaspan, called for an open competition and said it could convert a civilian cargo ship into a military supply ship at a significantly lower cost.

Court documents show that the RCMP obtained search warrants in the last two months of 2016 to seize the contents of Vice-Adm. Norman’s mobile devices as well as e-mails from Spencer Fraser, CEO of Federal Fleet Services, the Chantier-Davie company in charge of the interim supply ship project.

The Mounties also raided the offices of Mr. Fraser and three Chantier-Davie executives and their Ottawa lobbyists: Brian Mersereau, chairman of Hill and Knowlton, and Kevin MacIntosh, a partner and senior vice-president at FleishmanHillard.

“As a result of the data seized at Chantier Davie, it was discovered that Spencer Fraser was supplying information subject to cabinet confidence to [Chantier-Davie vice-president John] Schmidt, to Alex Vicefield, CEO of Inocea, parent company of Chantier Davie, and to various lobbyists working on behalf of Chantier Davie,” Cpl. Boulanger wrote ...
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Offline milnews.ca

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Re: 16 Jan 2017 - VCDS relieved of duty
« Reply #113 on: April 06, 2017, 06:42:24 »
And, in another element of the narrative unveiled via "sources" speaking the CBC News ...
Quote
The military's embattled second-in-command considered resigning when he was head of the Royal Canadian Navy, over what he perceived was political interference from the newly elected Liberal government, CBC News has learned.

Vice-Admiral Mark Norman's frustration hit the boiling point during one weekend in late November 2015, days after a series of leaks about the troubled national shipbuilding program.

He confided to a friend that he was "exhausted" by the internal political, bureaucratic and corporate battles; that he was "prepared to go public, if necessary;" how he couldn't "keep playing along much longer" and he was "prepared to resign over this," sources told CBC News.

The focus of his frustration related to a cabinet decision temporarily halting the planned lease of a much-needed navy supply ship from Levis, Que.-based Chantier Davie shipyards.

Just days before the pause was ordered, the co-CEO of rival Irving Shipbuilding, James Irving, sent a letter to Public Services and Procurement Minister Judy Foote and Defence Minister Harjit Sajjan. It was also copied to Treasury Board President and Nova Scotia MP Scott Brison and Finance Minister Bill Morneau, asking for a review of the lease plan ...
Lookit all the information pouring out within a day or two of each other ...
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Offline Oldgateboatdriver

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Re: 16 Jan 2017 - VCDS relieved of duty
« Reply #114 on: April 06, 2017, 09:00:43 »
Lookit all the information pouring out within a day or two of each other ...

Quite normal, milnews. When the affidavits, redacted, are finally ready for release, you can be sure that they are released to all the various journalists that were trying to get their hands on them. Then they quickly each go to their sources that they believe to know anyone or any thing mentioned in the unreacted portion and "dig". So it all comes out more or less simultaneously.

For those interested, here is a summary by the Supreme Court of what is involved in section 122 Breach of Trust by an official, together with the reference to the case if any one cares to read the whole decision - which goes into great details of the history and legal basis of official's breach of Trust:

The offence of breach of trust by a public officer is established where the Crown proves beyond a reasonable doubt that:  (1) the accused is an official; (2) the accused was acting in connection with the duties of his or her office; (3) the accused breached the standard of responsibility and conduct demanded of him or her by the nature of the office; (4) the accused’s conduct represented a serious and marked departure from the standards expected of an individual in the accused’s position of public trust; and (5) the accused acted with the intention to use his or her public office for a purpose other than the public good, for example,  a dishonest, partial, corrupt, or oppressive purpose. [58]/i]

http://www.canlii.org/en/ca/scc/doc/2006/2006scc32/2006scc32.html?searchUrlHash=AAAAAQAPQnJlYWNoIG9mIHRydXN0AAAAAAE&resultIndex=4

BTW, it seems to me that the government may have some difficulty with the last aspect of the proof required: that the purpose of his action were other than the public good. The only underlying intent I can see is avoiding the cancellation of a valid contract, at the public's great expense if done, for the purpose of giving a friend of the powers that be (the Irving's - who incidentally were lobbying for the government to breach it's contract here so they could get yet more public money themselves) a chance to get said work, but at great delays for the fleet, with the attached negative consequences. How that is against the public good is beyond me.

Personally, it is starting to look, to me anyway, like a witch hunt for the purpose of creating a chill effect in the civil service. If the problem is a breach of "cabinet confidences", then why aren't the cabinet members or cabinet officials who must be the one who breached the confidence to start with  (Adm. Norman is not part of the cabinet and there is no reason for him being privy to their deliberations unless told by someone who was there) being investigated?
« Last Edit: April 06, 2017, 10:04:52 by Oldgateboatdriver »

Offline PuckChaser

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Re: 16 Jan 2017 - VCDS relieved of duty
« Reply #115 on: April 06, 2017, 09:11:49 »
The barrack room lawyer in me concurs with your assessment on element 5 of the charge, OGBD.

I had to chuckle a little bit about him being unable to take the political interference anymore about the supply ships. The political interference for Fighter Replacement, FWSAR, etc must have been good to go, or he failed to remove his RCN-tinted glasses when taking over as the VCDS for all elements.

Offline milnews.ca

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Re: 16 Jan 2017 - VCDS relieved of duty
« Reply #116 on: April 06, 2017, 09:32:53 »
Quite normal, milnews. When the affidavits, redacted, are finally ready for release, you can be sure that they are released to all the various journalists that were trying to get their hands on them. Then they quickly each go to their sources that they believe to know anyone amor any thing mentioned in the unreacted portion and "dig". So it all comes out more or less simultaneously ...
I understand the "all the docs are available at the same time to everyone" thing, but only one of these stories appears to be based on the court documents -- G&M cites specific court docs, CTV cites obtained docs (but doesn't say how they were obtained -- if it was from the court package, not quite the scoop it appears to be), and CBC cites "sources", but no docs.  Not suggesting any evil intent - nothing wrong with an aggressive defence -- just sayin' ...
... here is a summary by the Supreme Court of what is involved in section 122 Breach of Trust by an official, together with the reference to the case if any one cares to read the whole decision - which goes into great details of the history and legal basis of official's breach of Trust ... BTW, it seems to me that the government may have some difficulty with the last aspect of the proof required: that the purpose of his action were other than the public good ...
Excellent sharing, OGBD - thanks!  For my non-legal mind, would all five elements have to be proven to convict, or if, say, between one and four out of five are proven beyond a reasonable doubt, the remaining "doubt" would go to sentencing?

... If the problem is a breach of "cabinet confidences", then why aren't the cabinet members or cabinet officials who must be the one who breached the confidence to start with  (Adm. Norman is not part of the cabinet and there is no reason for him being privy to their deliberations unless told by someone who was there) being investigated?
But if someone were to get information from the Cabinet table without being at the table itself, and shares that information out of turn, that's THEIR breach, not the Minister's no?  (And just asking out of general principle -- I have zero idea what happened in the case of VCDS.)
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Offline Halifax Tar

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Re: 16 Jan 2017 - VCDS relieved of duty
« Reply #117 on: April 06, 2017, 09:54:00 »
The barrack room lawyer in me concurs with your assessment on element 5 of the charge, OGBD.

I had to chuckle a little bit about him being unable to take the political interference anymore about the supply ships. The political interference for Fighter Replacement, FWSAR, etc must have been good to go, or he failed to remove his RCN-tinted glasses when taking over as the VCDS for all elements.

Correct me if I am wrong but the timeline I read would put the accusations as having happened during is tenure as CRCN; not when he was appointed VCDS.  So his RCN-tinted glasses would be fully understandable.

It sounds to me like he was about to go full Landymore on JT and his band of Happy Days; and in true Liberal Government fashion he was torpedoed.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/William_Landymore
« Last Edit: April 06, 2017, 09:58:14 by Halifax Tar »
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Offline Oldgateboatdriver

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Re: 16 Jan 2017 - VCDS relieved of duty
« Reply #118 on: April 06, 2017, 10:03:50 »
Milnews: All five elements of the infraction must each be proven beyond a reasonable doubt for a conviction to be obtained. "Reasonable Doubt" never goes to the sentencing in criminal matters, unlike in civil liability cases where wrongs can be apportioned between various parties, so you can be found partially at fault.

As for getting the info from the table without being at it, I don't believe that it is the case. The confidence of cabinet deliberation is for the people at the table to maintain. If they open their big mouths outside of the confidence circle, the recipient is not bound by any rule. These are NOT breach of official secrets, where an accidental recipients is just as bound to keep the secret as the original holder of the info. A person not at the table may be covered if that person is brought in the confidence circle for the specific purpose of commenting on or contributing to the deliberation, such as an expert that would be asked to prepare a brief on a specific subject or provide written answers to cabinet questions, for instance. 

Offline MCG

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Re: 16 Jan 2017 - VCDS relieved of duty
« Reply #119 on: April 06, 2017, 10:07:15 »
Advice given to cabinet is treated as cabinet confidence.  You do not have to be a member of cabinet to provide advice to cabinet.  A lot of people, both military and civilian, generate cabinet confidence information without being in cabinet.

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Re: 16 Jan 2017 - VCDS relieved of duty
« Reply #120 on: April 06, 2017, 10:18:11 »
Correct me if I am wrong but the timeline I read would put the accusations as having happened during is tenure as CRCN; not when he was appointed VCDS.  So his RCN-tinted glasses would be fully understandable.

He was upset enough to take the job as VCDS? Maybe he thought he'd be able to make changes from the 2nd highest position in the CAF? The Trudeau Government took over in November 2015 and quickly put the project on hold, but Norman was appointed VCDS in January 2016. His comments quoted in the CTV article don't have a date, but that's a pretty quick flash to bang.

I'm not trying to call his character into question, but political interference has been a way of life in military procurement since the 1960s and the Avro Arrow. Norman should have figured that out well before even becoming an Admiral. It shouldn't have been news to him, he served in the RCN during the EH101 debacle.

Offline FSTO

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Re: 16 Jan 2017 - VCDS relieved of duty
« Reply #121 on: April 06, 2017, 11:14:41 »
The barrack room lawyer in me concurs with your assessment on element 5 of the charge, OGBD.

I had to chuckle a little bit about him being unable to take the political interference anymore about the supply ships. The political interference for Fighter Replacement, FWSAR, etc must have been good to go, or he failed to remove his RCN-tinted glasses when taking over as the VCDS for all elements.

This all started while he was CRCN, so yes his RCN tinted glasses were in effect.

Offline Chris Pook

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Re: 16 Jan 2017 - VCDS relieved of duty
« Reply #122 on: April 06, 2017, 11:16:07 »
Quote
The two journalists who received the leaked Irving letters, which outlined the company's objections, have since been hired by the Liberal government.

http://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/admiral-shipbuilding-investigation-1.4057763

Ahem! The Admiral is left to twist and the reporters get hired.  With one of them hired by Sajjan himself?  I sense Senate seats in the offing.
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Offline George Wallace

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Re: 16 Jan 2017 - VCDS relieved of duty
« Reply #123 on: April 06, 2017, 11:28:43 »
http://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/admiral-shipbuilding-investigation-1.4057763

Ahem! The Admiral is left to twist and the reporters get hired.  With one of them hired by Sajjan himself?  I sense Senate seats in the offing.

I must say, that BLUF really makes one ponder the politics of this case.
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Offline Halifax Tar

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Re: 16 Jan 2017 - VCDS relieved of duty
« Reply #124 on: April 06, 2017, 11:59:00 »
http://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/admiral-shipbuilding-investigation-1.4057763

Ahem! The Admiral is left to twist and the reporters get hired.  With one of them hired by Sajjan himself?  I sense Senate seats in the offing.

I have to say, if all that came out today is true, this really changes things...
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