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Ottawa Shootings 20141024

After Islamic terrorist Michael Zehaf-Bibeau gunned down Cpl. Nathan Cirillo, a reservist with the Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders standing guard at Ottawa’s Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, the Canadian government removed the honor guard from the National War Memorial. In an official ceremony, the Guard was restored on Friday. “Officials said sentries will not be issued live weapons despite Wednesday’s attack,” reports, “as the position is ceremonial. Instead, National Defence spokesman Daniel Le Bouthillier said the sentries will be under ‘constant police surveillance.'” A decision supported by many Canadian pols, including a former astronaut (yes another one) who understands the wider implications of arming soldiers to defend themselves against lethal threats – but recoils in horror at the thought . . .

Conservative MP Erin O’Toole, a former air force officer, said the sentries aren’t actually guarding the war memorial and the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier from physical threats. “It’s meant to show respect to the fallen,” he said. “And it’s their presence that matters. I don’t think they need to be armed.”

Canadian MP Marc Garneau (courtesy

Liberal foreign affairs critic Marc Garneau [above], a former naval officer, said the sentries are “totally exposed” and that some Canadians will undoubtedly question the wisdom of leaving them unarmed.

“But if they should be armed, it’s because you’re saying somebody is going to come out and take a shot at them?” he said. “What does that imply for our society? If you’re going to start arming them, you might as well start arming everybody.”

Couldn’t have said it better myself.

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  1. “But if they should be armed, it’s because you’re saying somebody is going to come out and take a shot at them?” he said. “What does that imply for our society? If you’re going to start arming them, you might as well start arming everybody.”
    about freaking time they figured it out.

  2. Really, the sargeant at arms that shot the bastard should not have been armed. Why are the politicians protecting themselves differently than they allow for the public? They should rely on the cameras….

    • Why? Why? For god’s sake, that’s what politicians in power do everywhere. It is apparently a natural law, that if you intend to waste other people’s money and constrain their freedom, you must arm yourself and disarm them. The good Marc Garneau thinks arming the guard logically implies allowing arms to everyone. Arming the legislature’s guard. “Well, obviously that is simply necessary!” No difficult implications whatever, except that hypocrisy’s epitome is the Politician.

    • Perhaps we should make the politicians stand guard at our war memorials – unarmed of course.

  3. This guy dug his own grave with his argument and jumped in. Do people even pay attention to the things they say anymore?

  4. An unarmed soldier is a useless as a limp you-know-what. I’m beginning to think that Canada is equally useless.

    • What a bunch of anti-Canada hosers, eh? Canada sure had whiskey when you yanks needed it. We don’t need guns, ’cause we have the government, and the Rizzuto, Musitano, and Contraro-Contruana crime families, the Irish mob, the Tongs in Vancouver, Islamic nutjobs, and the N’dragheta. Things are cool (in both senses) and we don’t need people shooting back…because it’s loud and we’re quiet, unlike you. If you don’t want a beating just shuddup or run for office, eh?

    • I’m just going to play devil’s advocate a little bit.

      I’ve never guarded the Cenotaph in Ottawa but I used to do November 11 duty at my local Cenotaph. One of the drill moves required during Cenotaph duty is Rest on Your Arms, Reversed – since it already violates at least one of the four rules (the muzzle of your rifle is resting on the top of your foot, just behind your toe), I really don’t think it should be done with a loaded rifle. As such, I’d be in favor of giving the guards loaded mags in a pocket or sporran, but not loaded into the rifle.

  5. Our guards at the US Tomb of the Unknowns and the UK Buckingham Palace Guards don’t have loaded weapons.

    Apparently they’re not giving the White House Secret Service Detail any bullets either! Or maybe it’s the ammo shortage…

    • I’m not sure if you’re being sarcastic or not, but the US Army Old Guard carries M-14 rifles in 7.62×51 NATO loaded with twenty round magazines at the Tomb of the Uknowns.

      The US Army sees the guard duty as more than “symbolic”.

      • As far as I know the magazine is empty. They are honor guards not sentries. The nature of their duties does afford them a good field of view and they are going to have poor situational awareness. Better to have civil police or MPs on the scene to handle threats.

      • The Old Guards weapons are unloadd.

        At the changing of the guard the first thing done is “inspection arms”. The weapon is opened and the guad looks to be sure there is no round. It’s unusual in the the rife has a magazine inserted. The NCO then takes and inspects the weapon. Were the rifle loaded, you’d have a couple of rounds on the ground.

        The guards are very good at issuing commands to those that talk out of turn or wonder into certain areas. Plus they have backup just seconds away.

  6. The French influence really shows. Maybe Canada deserves to be conquered and subjugated. ISIS, Al Qaeda, and their brothers aren’t going to stop their assault just because a few elitists want to live with the illusion of an unattainable utopia. Wakeup Canada!!! There are bad people in the world who want to kill you and staff their brothels with your daughters. Sorry if that is a strong statement that offends liberal sensibilities, but geez, what else can be done to wake these people up.

    • “Oh, Canada, we stand on guard for thee!” -from the Canadian national anthem, and motto of the Canadian army.

      New U.S. anthem? Might as well just give the U.S. 10% of its defense budget and let the guards and soldiers do something their politicians care more about, like tar sands exploitation.

  7. “What does that imply for our society? If you’re going to start arming them, you might as well start arming everybody.”

    Many a true word said in jest.

  8. The Canadians are the North American version of the cowering Europeans. The “guards” may indeed be ceremonial, but the coward who shot the unarmed guard is typical of the muslim jihadists. They like their victims to be unable to defend themselves and the governments that place unarmed guards are only making it easier for the middle eastern terrorists to act with impunity.
    It is much like the gate guards at many U.S. Air Force Bases in the 80s. They had weapons with empty magazines because our leaders didn’t trust the young Airmen with a loaded weapon “guarding” the base perimeter. It made me sick then and it still does to this day.

    • All is not lost.

      I was private gate security a about four years ago at an airforce base. We were issued an M9 from the armory with ammo. We loaded the weapon at the loading station.

      We also qualified each year with the air force security on the air force shooting range.

    • What are you talking about? I know for a fact that minimum load for the .38 from 1984 to 1987 was 18 rounds, M-9 from 1987 and beyond 1992 was 30 rounds with 1 in the pipe, and for an M-16, 120 to 240 rounds. It was baked into AFR 207-1. If someone had you out there without a full load, you should have filed a complaint with the Office of Security Police or the Inspector General’s office. I cannot see how any USAF base during that period would pass a major inspection with such a blatant disregard for that regulation.

    • I think that the situation has sufficiently deteriorated to the point where the smart ones will decide that what their REMF superiors don’t know, won’t hurt their tender sensibilities. Draw your own conclusion.


  9. And these idiots have just advertised to e very tom,dick and hairy muslim that they are unarmed. They don’t have a clue what a soft target they are. I wonder how many “volunteers” they’re going to get for this “honour”?

  10. What the hell good is “constant police surveillance” going to be, besides giving cops a front row seat to a murder? They still have to get shot before the rective police force even knows what is happening.

  11. If you’re going to stand guard in an official capacity, give the soldiers sabres and rifles. This is simply asenine. Might as well hire walmart greeters and have them pass out smiley face stickers.

  12. Some years back, I heard there were some incidents of M-16s being robbed from recruits in basic training at Ft. Dix, NJ. Ft. Dix was an “open base” at the time, and access to the base was wide open — no gates, no restriction whatever to entry.
    The recruits would be on guard duty, “armed” with empty M-16s. A car would pull up to one of these recruits, and a passenger would point a presumably loaded gun at him, and demand his rifle.
    The incidents ceased when MPs were assigned to guard duty, either in place of, or in addition to, the recruits. The only difference was the M-16s the MPs carried were loaded.

    • I was stationed in Europe in the 80’s. Criminals would ambush police and military personnel for their firearms all the time. I remember once hearing about the Belgium military threatening to go on strike for being forced to carry guns because it was too dangerous. (Yes, the Belgium military had a union.) They did not go after us that much probably because we were loaded, 1 in the chamber, safety off, and holstered.

  13. No one ‘needs’ to be armed until they are attacked. This is a big logical problem because if only our needs were catered to, we would all be living in a Matrix esque box with food and water.

  14. So they’re standing guard with non-firing things which LOOK like rifles because they’re guards, and they’d look silly without, but in reality they’re defenseless because to be armed with real weapons would be wrong??
    That makes perfect sense.

  15. In Canada, there is no higher honor than dieing needlessly for your country. Is that the message they are sending?

  16. Once a “ceremonial” post gets attacked maybe one should reconsider either the meaning of ‘ceremonial’ or the status thereof.

  17. As long as their not going to arm their guy, why don’t they just put a mannequin out there and dress him up as a “pretend” soldier, with a “pretend” rifle!

  18. “What does that imply for our society? ”

    Poor little marc garneau’s bubble burst.

    What a selfish little bitch to cry and whine for keeping sitting duck soldiers disarmed.

    Im apoplectic at the level of bitch-hattery from this guy.

    • What does it imply NOT to arm him?

      I get the ‘stiff upper lip’ thing, I do. But in the days of “keep calm and carry on” I know for a fact the home guard was prepared to use those nasty guns to repel bad men from their shores.

  19. If Canada wanted to make a statement to the jihadis there’d be a squad of lads in bdu’s and loaded rifles in place of the ceremonial gaurd. I’m sure the dead soldiers mates will be more than happy to fall out locked and loaded if only the PM would crawl out of his armed and secure hiding place and give the word.

  20. Evidence of Government Insanity. The jihadist attacked a symbol of government. It seems killing a symbol is less important than preserving life, yet when your a Sargent of arms (symbolic position) room temps an Islamic nut job, he’s a “hero” and still alive. As a former Marine, if my leaders ordered me to stand ceremonial guard without ammo after two attacks killing solders, I would refuse and take the NJP.

    This also shows how myopic western governments have become. They have yet to understand the enemy and the steps necessary to preserve life. Just proves Canadian leadership is fine with creating conditions that murder their people.

  21. I was stationed in Ottawa as a Marine Security Guard at the U.S. Embassy. We were armed with S&W M10’s (.38 Spl) and riot guns, and I can assure you that they were loaded. But when the Governor General’s Foot Guards paraded on Parliament Hill in the summer for the tourists, they had no ammunition. But then, no parade or cermonial troops of which I’m aware have ever carried ammunition. No Marine recruits were allowed to have ammunition at any time (including on guard duty) except on the rifle range. On the other hand, when I was a guard NCO at a Virginia naval base, I can assure you that my Marine sentries were armed with loaded (no round in the chamber) M1911A1’s or shotguns and there were definite rules for the use of such weapons in the event deadly force was required. Given the propensity of Marines to mess around with their weapons, each firearm was equipped with an easily broken “seal” to prevent them from working the action except when an actual situation called for it. When they were relieved from post, if the seal was broken the sentry required a damned good explanation, or he was going to go in front of the Skipper and maybe lose money, stripes or do brig time. I can’t speak for any of the other U.S. armed forces, but in my experience Marine sentries have always been issued ammunition. Having been posted in Ottawa, I think I understand why the Cenotaph honor guards weren’t issued ammunition – no Canadian would disrespect such an honorable posting by trying to harm the sentry. Despite how similar Canada’s culture is to the U.S., still, there are differences. Canada was mostly not formed by conquest, as the U.S. was, and was heavily influenced by the British, and that is still reflected in their approach to life, culture and other things. I consider that Canadians are more restrained and would rather talk over any differences rather than fight over them (although I did see a few good drunken brawls during my time in Ottawa). Having fought no revolution for their liberty and rights, they have different ideas about many things. However, a fantatical, radicalized Muslim convert? The same rules don’t apply to them – they are crazy. Just like in the States. What some Americans call a “sheep mentality” in Canadians is actually their culture at work – an amalgam of Europeanized and Americanized views – not the same as U.S. views, for sure (except for our socialist-progressives). I’m sure they’ll get a grip on things up there, in their own way.

    • This Canadian thanks you for a rare, well-balanced, and perceptive appreciation of the circumstance.

      Those of you who have chosen this opportunity to refer to my country as “a joke”, or worse, are displaying your woeful ignorance of how life is up here.

      Yep, we’re not Americans. That’s both good and bad. But I’d sure as hell not casually slander your great nation. If I did, I’d be the massive jerkwad who can’t play nice with others, yammering on about a subject I knew little about, at a time that demands a degree of decorum and respect. I’d be the guy hollering at a funeral, or drunk off his ass at a christening.

      The quick, mindless, ‘Merica response I’m seeing here is not flattering to you lot. Show a little class, if you can.

  22. “But if they should be armed, it’s because you’re saying somebody is going to come out and take a shot at them?” he said. “What does that imply for our society?”

    Stupid progressive attitude. They just can’t understand that the world isn’t the utopia they want, and that laws and good intentions can’t make it that way. I’m glad that not all Canadians think this way. Hopefully those who have retained their common sense can retake the country from the progressive dreamers.

  23. And when the bomb vest wearing nut job comes running towards them screaming some incomprehensible jibberish about Allah (also incomprehensible), the Guard’s duty is to scream like a little girl and run away.

    We have the same problem in New Zealand, a great lack of Government testicular capacity. The only Muslim troubles are where one bunch of Muslims is trying to burn down another bunch’s mosque. Which seem like a good idea regardless.

  24. “But if they should be armed, it’s because you’re saying somebody is going to come out and take a shot at them?” he said. “What does that imply for our society?”

    What kind of fantasy world is this guy living in? Could he look that murdered soldier’s child in the face and say that ridiculous nonsense? Thankfully, Kevin Vickers did have a real, loaded gun, or you’d have a bunch of dead MPs on your hands.

    Sounds like another, sadly typical case of politicians’ lives mattering more than young soldiers’ lives. You can bet when big time politicians visit that monument, someone with a real, loaded gun is protecting them.

  25. “But if they should be armed, it’s because you’re saying somebody is going to come out and take a shot at them?” he said. Didn’t one of the get shot already ? Then your argument makes NO sense. “What does that imply for our society? If you’re going to start arming them, you might as well start arming everybody.” Exactly, arm everyone. Why not ? If your government and the police can’t protect everyone from harm, and they can’t, they your citizens should have the right to protect themselves. Any other approach is unethical and immoral.

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