Prime Minister Stephen Harper February, 09, 2011
Office of the Prime Minister
80 Wellington Street
RE: OF MOUNTIES AND MURDER
Dear Prime Minister Harper,
The RCMP fatalities inquiry into the deaths of four RCMP officers at Mayerthorpe, Alberta draws to a close. Provincial court Justice Pahl retires to his deliberations. This, the penultimate chapter of this tragedy, now written. It was the writing of this chapter that gave us a glimpse of those whose service to self and concern for career trumps truth and reality.
How remarkable that now, as errant children, the RCMP seeks to blame everyone else save themselves. This is not surprising as in the last decade we have watched as this once proud police force with an international reputation for excellence, professionalism and the dogged pursuit of justice has deteriorated into a corrupt, self serving, incompetent, murderous and duplicitous national joke.
Senior RCMP officers were in fine form throughout the hearing refining the manipulation of fact, sleight of hand and buck passing to an art form. RCMP deputy commissioner Rod Knecht was no exception and in top shape speaking to the “high level of training” the dead officers had received. Unfortunately, and largely ignored by the press, are volumes truthfully spoken to the utter lack of training of these officers, volumes of truth wrought from their deaths. This truth, amongst other realities, left Knecht untroubled. Witnesses were excluded, facts manipulated and melodrama was a subtle yet palpable undercurrent. The inquiry adjourned, the doors to the courthouse opened, and Knecht, career intact, dabbing crocodile tears, comforting widows and mothers, met the press. We, the Public, were taken to task.
How remarkable that, with shrill voices and self righteous indignation, we are now tongue lashed by the relatives of the dead officers for not “developing” better relationships with the RCMP. These little jewels of chastisement fall from the lips of the dead officers parents in the face of the brutal execution of Robert Dziekanski in the Vancouver Airport. Four RCMP officers, in a killing that speaks more of the handiwork of the Mexican Los Zetas’ than the competent enforcement of law, tazered to death an innocent Polish tourist. A detail not to be missed was Dziekanskis’ weapon of choice……wait for it…….a stapler!!!! The scene, caught on video tape, was not one to uplift public confidence, no public relations bridge builder that, but rather one of Neanderthal thugs gathered around a man and, with great enthusiasm, murdering him. Subsequent to that little RCMP display of “Maintien Le Droit” one of the officers who participated in that killing, Const. Benjamin Robinson, couldn’t restrain himself from drunken revelry and killed an innocent man in a drunk driving accident.
A Kelowna, BC man is on his knees in a position of surrender being covered by a female RCMP officer. Buddy Tavares’ reward for obeying the commands of the RCMP was to be bum rushed and brutally kicked in the face by RCMP Officer Geoff Mantler. (evidently not Mantler's first brush with police brutality) Now that’s a real confidence builder isn’t it Const. Mantler? (Bet that was cause for a big tee-hee down at the detachment wasn’t it?)
Darren Varley, while drunken and combative, was executed in the cells of the Pincher Creek RCMP detachment by Officer Ferguson. This of course, was a result of the same incompetence and buffoonery so richly displayed in Mayerthorpe. Exactly what was Const. Ferguson doing in cells with a weapon, a firearm? That little faux pas was a fly in the ointment the size of an albatross for Ferguson’s legal defence team to work around and once again, colour me surprised, a complete departure from RCMP dictates, training and procedure.
Further to the north, in an act of physical contortion that would draw the jealous eye of even the most seasoned Cirque De Soleil acrobat, Const Koester managed to shoot Ian Bush in the back of the head…..even though Const. Koester, nearing unconsciousness as he testified, was being strangled from behind. I know, I know…………just think about that one for a few minutes.
Of course the subsequent investigation into the killing of Ian Bush boggled the minds of the residents of Houston, BC, nay, boggled the minds of the entire country. Evidence of that as experts, testifying at the hearing into the murder of Ian Bush, routinely contradicted each other in an atmosphere worthy of a Kangaroo Court. A departing thought; one minute a young man is complying with the instructions of RCMP officers and quietly riding to the detachment in the custody of the RCMP, the next minute that same young man is dead. A death Ian Bush suffered at the hands of his custodians, the RCMP. (Bet that was a real knee-slapper around the detachment water cooler ‘eh boys?)
But let’s not stop with murder, why the activities of the RCMP are nothing less than a veritable carnival of corruption and incompetence. How about the allegations of pedophilia and child molestation against an RCMP officer that went uninvestigated? Then there was the outright fraud committed by senior RCMP commissioners including RCMP commissioner Giuliano Zaccardelli. In fact, retired RCMP Staff Sgt Ron Lewis testified that his investigation into the fraud was met with “obstruction, lies, inaction, delays and roadblocks created by commissioner Zaccardelli. This was when Zaccardelli wasn’t too busy spending over 80,000 dollars of the taxpayers’ money on office renovations.
Recently, the Canadian government was forced to take the extraordinary step of placing a civilian in charge of the RCMP in order to correct the lethal and criminal systemic defects that were utterly beyond the ability of senior RCMP commanders to identify and address let alone resolve. On July 17, 2007, Commissioner William Elliot, the first civilian head of the RCMP, was appointed to do what the senior RCMP echelons either wouldn’t or couldn’t do; provide leadership and competent professional stewardship of a national police force.
It was to be expected that Commissioner Elliot would have an uphill battle on his hands as simply the act of appointing outside help to assist the RCMP with the very basics of police force leadership and management was a damning indictment and bound to bruise some fragile egos. Expectations were spot on and for the past three years we have borne witness to the gnashing of teeth and juvenile whimpering from top RCMP commanders as they complained vigorously about the manner in which they were taken to task for their shortcomings. This raises the question; exactly how does one give a politically correct, ego massaging, sugar coating to phrases and words like, dereliction of duty, professional misconduct, incompetence, lethality, criminal complicity, perjury, and murderous zeal? Exactly how do we put a spin on language that accurately describes the actions of the RCMP so as not to bruise the delicate sensibilities of the senior RCMP bureaucracy?
The whining of the senior RCMP commanders reached a public forum on February 08, 2011. The insipid and vacuous testimony of deputy commissioner Raf Souccar, as he testified before the Public Safety Committee in Ottawa, was little more than one long tedious adult version of a child drumming his heels on the kitchen floor because Mummy told him he would have to clean his room. This said, there are very few children who would sink to the depths of outrageous hypocrisy as commissioner Raf Souccar did during the hearing. It seems the delicate sensibilities of Raf Souccar were rattled when he had his nose rubbed in the doo-doo of his own stupidity and incompetence. Souccar wheedled at the hearing claiming that his brutal treatment and public humiliation at the hands of Commissioner Elliot “eroded the RCMP’s core values of respect and compassion”.
I know…….I know…..here we go again……and I know exactly what you’re thinking…..where in the name of Christ were the RCMP’s core values during the murder of Varley, Bush and Dziekanski? Seems that words like respect, compassion, integrity, honesty, professionalism are nothing more than punch lines. Simply fancy dress-up words, literal mechanisms of leverage used in a political poker game played by life long RCMP bureaucrats whose service to self has become an art form. Quite frankly, the hearing was an embarrassment to watch.
The criminality of the RCMP knows no bounds. From witness tampering, destruction of evidence, fraud, drunken driving, child molestation, criminal negligence, criminal negligence causing death, perjury, obstruction of justice, underage prostitute solicitation, impaired driving, assault, manslaughter, murder, the list goes on. In light of this it is no wonder that in an investigation into the deaths of four RCMP officers the senior RCMP commanders would do everything in order to twist the entire matter into one utterly predictable, obscene, self serving and exculpatory charade.
How remarkable that we, the Public, are somehow, in a mind numbing twist of logic, to blame for not developing warm and cozy relationships with law enforcement officers whose daily conduct evokes images of jack booted thugs whose handiwork, between bites of bratwurst and gulps of lager, lent support to a spirited Germanic orator. The same orator who, after the eradication of the rights of Germany’s citizens, dabbled in genocide and world war. Exactly how much whiskey must one consume to arrive at that conclusion? I have only two words to describe that rationale and logic; utterly laughable.
We are taken to task and given direction by the remaining family of the dead officers. We are lectured, nay, instructed, from the bully pulpit of self righteous grieving relative, to develop relationships with the RCMP and call them when we have information. I strongly disagree with this assertion. Why would a Public, justifiably fearful and wary of its police force, extend a hand of trust and cooperation when that hand has been repeatedly bitten and slapped away? Why would we entrust our children to the protection of a police force that has brutally murdered the same and then lied about that murder? Why would we ignore and turn a blind eye to the outrageous and injurious actions of those men and women whose sworn duty it is to uphold the law and protect the citizens of this country? And, as so brilliantly illustrated in Mayerthorpe, why in the name of Christ would we seek the assistance and protection of those who can’t even protect themselves? Common sense and decency dictate it is not we the Public who have bridges to build and hands to extend.
Denizens of California and Canada’s West Coast, bleary eyed and slightly addled, smelling vaguely of incense and herb tea, would, between verses of Joan Baez’s “Kumbaya My Lord”, sing the praises of marijuana grow-ops. They would tell you that marijuana grow-ops are places of pure cosmic energy, good karma and peaceful spirituality. They would tell you grow-ops are places to polish your chakra, mend your aura and mind-meld with multi-colored fairies of the forest. However, that drug induced notion is vastly different from reality.
Marijuana grow-ops are the currency of organized crime. They are the currency of South American and Mexican drug cartels. They are the jealously guarded generators of revenue for criminals and low-lives across North and South America. In guarding these little gold mines the owners use everything from IED’s (improvised explosive devices) to man-traps. The owners will, at the drop of a hat, resort to murder, terrorism, kidnapping and extortion to protect their investment. Law enforcement is well versed in the violent and murderous nature of marijuana grow-op caretakers. Pits in Mexico have been found filled with the bodies of those who “knew too much” about a grow-op. Some hikers in California and around the US and Canada who were unfortunate enough stumble into a grow-op have been known to “disappear” or show up months later, their rotting remains in a shallow grave. Marijuana grow-ops are very dangerous places.
James Roszko was no different from many of his criminal counterparts; he was a very dangerous man. Roszko had a reputation, cultivated over decades, that preceded him by light years. It was a reputation that the RCMP were intimately familiar with. Roszko was known for forcible confinement, breaking and entering, sexual sadism, stalking, uttering threats, petty larceny, vehicle theft and drug dealing. So when the four RCMP officers stumbled upon Roszko’s Mayerthorpe grow-op, knowing the nature of grow-ops and their owners and knowing Roszko’s reputation for criminality and violence, did they really expect him to arrive in a hippie love bus, draped in beads and packing hollow-point granola bars? It wasn’t the Public who were guilty of a gross miscalculation, it wasn’t the judiciary who were guilty of a gross miscalculation, it wasn’t the media who were guilty of a gross miscalculation; it was the RCMP officers. They were wrong, dead wrong.
As for the four RCMP officers on Roszkos’ farm; they paid for their stupidity, for their failure to follow procedure, for their failure to remain in a tactical stance in a dangerous, still fluid, still unfolding situation, with their lives. Conducting themselves with all the caution and tactics of drunken cowboys on Roszko’s farm that day, they set the game in motion and it was one stacked against them. They did not deserve to die but they got what they themselves and their superiors had paved the way for.
Those who remain behind need someone to blame. They need to blame something or someone with a pulse for to blame a faceless system and a self serving corrupt law enforcement bureaucracy is not enough. While the loss of life is tragic, it is not the fault of the community, it is not the fault of the judicial system, it is not the fault of a pair of town dullards. The fault rests squarely on the dead officer’s shoulders, on the head of a homicidal lunatic and at the doorstep of the senior echelons of the RCMP.
In closing, truer words were never spoken, “the RCMP is horribly broken”. The RCMP is a shadow of its former self. The days of Sam Steele are long since gone and were Superintendent Steele alive today he would turn away in disgust at the malignant farce his beloved police force has become ‘neath the stewardship of Knecht, Souccar, Zaccardelli and others.
As our national police force (RCMP) your reputation for criminality, murder, zeal, incompetence, corruption and stupidity is well deserved; it is a reputation you have unceasingly and diligently cultivated for over 2 decades. You are an international disgrace to Canada and a national embarrassment to Canadians. You, as we are, should be ashamed of yourselves.
PO. Box 6563