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Retired general’s speech slamming Canada’s climate policies, cancel culture & weak leaders applauded by officers

David Pugliese  •  Ottawa Citizen

Serving senior Canadian military officers gave a standing ovation to a speech by a retired general who criticized everything from the removal of historical statues and apologies to victims to government climate change policies.

Retired Lt.-Gen. Michel Maisonneuve, accepting a top defence award Nov. 9 in Ottawa, also took a swipe at leaders who he claimed divide rather than unite. While not specifically naming Prime Minister Justin Trudeau or Hillary Clinton, Maisonneuve said “can you imagine a military leader labelling half of his command as deplorables, fringe radicals and less-thans and then expect them to fight as one?”

Conservative MPs, anti-vaxers, right-wing commentators and those who supported protests which blockaded border crossings and occupied downtown Ottawa earlier this year have all railed at Trudeau for his comments about demonstrators. Trudeau labelled protest groups that descended on Ottawa as a “fringe minority” who held “unacceptable views” not representing the majority of Canadians.

In addition, Maisonneuve  took issue with the new policy by Chief of the Defence Staff Gen. Wayne Eyre who made recent changes to military dress regulations to include beards and hair colouring, and to give both women and men more options in selecting uniforms.

Maisonneuve made his speech as he accepted the Vimy Award, which honoured him for his life-long contributions in defence, including his work on military education, support for veterans as well as his commitment to bilingualism.