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SLOBODIAN: Manitoba chief says more churches will burn

A plea for the destruction to stop was made by residential school survivors, some who are members of the targeted churches.




More churches will burn because more unmarked graves at former residential school sites will be found, predicts Assembly of Manitoba Chiefs (AMC) interim Grand Chief Leroy Constant.

On the heels of the discovery of almost 1,000 unmarked graves, about two dozen churches, most in Western Canada, have been destroyed, damaged by fire, or vandalized. 

“I wouldn’t say I’m concerned about it, but we should be prepared for more,” said Constant when asked if churches will continue to be torched. 

“As we move on, with more mass graves that are going to be found in the remaining searches of the residential schools, we anticipate more,” said the chief of the York Factory First Nation. 

“There’s a lot of people that are feeling anger. All of that’s out of anger,” said Constant.

A plea for the destruction to stop was made by residential school survivors, some who are members of the targeted churches. 

AMC hasn’t echoed that call. 

The arson and vandalism are out of the hands of Indigenous leaders, said Constant.

“It’s beyond us now. It’s the people that are acting out now. It’s the survivors. There are multi-generational people that have been affected by the residential school system. We can’t physically stop people. There’s people that are acting out because of their anger, because of the hurt, the loss of their culture, their language,” he said.

Constant said he doesn’t condone the attacks on churches.

“But I understand the pain that’s associated with it,” he said. 

What good comes from acts of arson and vandalism?

“It brings attention to the issues,” said Constant.

Members of targeted churches being religiously persecuted had nothing to do with 150,000 indigenous children being forced from their communities into some140 residential schools.

The abusive system prevailed over a 100-year span.

Catholic churches have been singled out for attack, but residential schools and day programs were also run by Mennonite, Anglican, United and Presbyterian churches.

In May, unmarked graves believed to hold remains of 215 indigenous children, were discovered at a former residential school site in Kamloops, B.C. Soon after, 751 unmarked graves were found in rural Saskatchewan. 

The causes of death are undetermined. 

The discoveries prompted calls for investigations at other sites across Canada.

Manitoba had 14 residential schools.

Sioux Valley Dakota Nation, in southwestern Manitoba, identified 104 potential graves on land where a residential school operated 1985-1972. 

Records account for only 78 of those graves. Efforts to identify children who died at the school have been underway since 2019.

Several other Manitoba First Nations announced they’ll conduct searches after the recent discoveries.

Indigenous communities are in “crisis,” said Constant.

“When the announcements are made, it’s a really heavy feeling in the community. Not only with the elders but with the actual residential school survivors themselves. You’re hearing all these stories now. It brings back memories of seeing these children taken and not returned,” he said.

Many who experienced the residential school horrors suffer in silence refusing to talk about it.

“I guarantee across the nation right now there’s a lot of re-opening of those wounds,” he said.

Constant said a lot of government support is needed.

“It’s not going to be money. We’re going to need a lot of resources to apply to First Nations communities,” he said, suggesting that support teams be deployed.

“It’s going to be overwhelming. It is overwhelming already. We’ve got to prepare for it. With the ground-penetrating radar system they have in place, it’s going to be definite.”

Slobodian is a Western Standard columnist based in Manitoba

Linda Slobodian is the Manitoba Senior Columnist for the Western Standard. She has been an investigative columnist with the Calgary Herald, Calgary Sun, Edmonton Sun, and Alberta Report. lslobodian@westernstandardonline.com

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  1. Left Coast

    July 15, 2021 at 12:49 pm

    @ GS UDDIN

    You have no friggin clue man . . . you come from an inbred culture that can’t even run their own countries . . . hence Diktators!
    Saudi Arabia for example runs on Foreign Workers. From their Oil Fields to refineries to shipping all done by Foreign Expertise.
    Look at Iran aka Persia . . . in the 60s the most Westernized Country in the middle east . . . today it is the realm of Insane Despots trying to create a Nuclear Weapon so they can usher in the 13th Imam.

    “The builders of railroads were Chinese and Indians The black slaves built the US” ? ? ?
    Chinese helped build the railroad . . . so they created the country? Just NUTS man . . .
    Demokkkrat Slaves picked Cotton in the south . . . till the First Republican President Lincoln took their slaves away after the Civil War . . . the Dems are still mad today.

    But while on the subject of slaves . . . who sold the Africans into Slavery? Why it was the moohamedans, who are still in the business today in Libya and other venues.
    You do understand that in the 18th Century Slavery was common all over the World.
    Did you know that one of the First Slave Owners in the USA was a black man?
    The first legal slave owner in America was black and he owned white slaves.
    Anthony Johnson (AD 1600 – 1670) was an Angolan who achieved freedom in the early 17th century Colony of Virginia.

    My question to u is . . . did you go to University to get this uninformed?

  2. Baron Not Baron

    July 14, 2021 at 10:11 pm


    The Europeans have built everything that has to do with ALL the modern industrialization of the world. You’re here because of the invention of the aircraft.. invented by Christianity, that enabled you to fly.. Yes? You’re here because you love everything about the Christianity built world. With other words, what is being built in the middle east.. it is with European technology. The ONLY thing the middle east locals are putting in is.. money – that comes from the ground – being extracted with European technology. How do you explain there’s no exodus of Christian population to the middle east, but everyone wants to come to Christianity built cities, instead?

    Let me give you a hint about how is stuff being built in the middle east.. Did you know that one of the biggest Ferrari dealers in the middle east (Abu Dhabi) was to be up for bidding between two European companies.. it ended up to be designed by a Frenchman. I wonder why those nice guys from the middle east that paid a lot of money for their joy.. didn’t find a local guy to design!

    BTW, the rail road was invented by Europeans. All the cars in the world, including the fan cars from the middle east have been invented by Europeans! You are using all the technology made by Europeans.. including your sunglasses.
    Your people keep coming to the Christian built cities to study..

    Imagine if Christianity was so evil, like you describe it, then would any of you be present today anywhere in the Christianity built world, to make a living and enjoy ? If that was the case, the middle east would have stayed primitive in comparison to the modern West.

    There’s only one way to sanctify the land and that is with Creation. The opposite of that is destruction.

  3. GS Uddin

    July 14, 2021 at 6:27 am

    @Left Coast:
    Christians built nothing. The builders of railroads were Chinese and Indians The black slaves built the US and were forced to be Christian or be whipped to death. Europe’s wealth comes from plundering and raping (Congo chocolate for Belgium, metals from Africa, oil etc.).
    The only time the west has grown is when it turned it’s back on Christianity. China is the greatest economic provider today and not Christian. The bombs killing people in the middle east are Christian made however. Great contribution!

  4. Left Coast

    July 13, 2021 at 9:18 am

    @ GS UDDIN

    The second most dangerous ideology on the planet to day is izzzzzlam.
    Communism being the No. 1 killer.

    Egypt was once a Coptic Christian country, Turkey was majority Orthodox . . . Indonesia was once Buddhist . . . and today we are watching Nigeria and numerous other African countries being assaulted daily by your fellow travellers. Church burning seems to be their MO as well . . . and this is happening in 2021!

    Christian men built ALL the Western Democracies . . . you built Iran !

  5. Baron Not Baron

    July 11, 2021 at 2:58 pm

    I do have a question.. How is it decided that these UNMARKED burial places are “grave yards”? Any DNA collected and analyzed or just a <> of what these MUST be? Are all their burial places marked, and if they are unmarked then they MUST be by all means what they want them to be? What about(currently)the alcohol and drug native addicts found dead wherever they drop.. are those someone else’s problem, too?

    In all fairness.. the First Nations were found here the way they.. were; meaning they were killing, torturing, therefore conquering each other – before the white man came. The Natives were all conquered by the Europeans, which concluded they were a lot more intelligent, based the technology available, therefore winning.

    And those were the times when we, the present populations, didn’t exist! We have nothing to do with it. No one needs to apologize for anything of the past.

    The End.

    All I get now (I must say at the beginning I didn’t see the First Nations buying into going ahead and burn the Catholic churches!)this is an orchestrated assembly forming (under the big reach of the higher power than the First Nations) to create havoc – to divide and conquer..

    I believe Wildrose Independence Party of Alberta will bring sense and cooperation between all of us, here in Alberta, as the First Nations should no longer receive any handouts, but rather earn a living, contribute to Alberta’s prosperity and their own.. and finally integrate into the common goal of all of us. Too bad the First Nations have lost their old way of life to the one now heavily addicted on taxpayer’s money, which brought control and corruption – and further divided themselves within their own groups.

    This joke has to end, as I am sure that many of them do enjoy or want to join the modern way of life and opportunity.

    The upper limit of a person is a real problem. As soon as someone reaches good in life by chance or intended, the downward follows, and then the person questions that, in doubt. The answer: it is self imposed. The astonishing great majority of YOU, don’t know or didn’t hear about it. That is why you are where you are, when you could’ve reached better. And so it is with this issue, too. If there’s no “up”, there’s always more and easier to reach, “down”!

    Finally, they got something more “vivid” in their existence other than boredom? Is this their decision that all of the creative energy should become a destructive one? Do they believe they’re going to get something great out of this, that somehow Catholicism is going to be cancelled? Cancelling Catholicism means also cancelling those people that bear that conviction. Which group(s) of Catholics are they after? – in case they didn’t know, they might learn that in just about all races there are Catholics.. including their own.

    If this doesn’t end well, it doesn’t end well for anybody – them too – as there’s a “third party”, inciting for violence and waiting for the other two to annihilate each-other – just like they did with the great wars in Europe, just like they use today the blacks against the whites, asians against the whites. Does that ring any bell of how is it possible that right when the spirit of Alberta separation is growing by the day, this crisis has just appeared?

  6. GS Uddin

    July 11, 2021 at 11:06 am


    Maybe you could tell me about Bosnia where both Catholic Croats and Orthodox Serb Christians raped and massacred, raped, exterminated Muslims just decades ago or Christian Congo where 20 million have died in civil war?

    Still, in this country the guys who do all the attacks on others (Muslims, Natives, blacks, PM, abortion clinics etc) are whites who are cultural if not ideological Christians. What do you expect man?

  7. Left Coast

    July 11, 2021 at 9:12 am

    @ GS UDDIN

    Says the guy who was likely cheering the driver of the truck at the Munich Christmas Festival a few years back!

    Obviously you don’t pay any attention to what is going on in Libya today where slave auctions are not rare. Or the children being kidnapped in Nigeria today.

    Don’t go ALL CBC on me WS !

  8. GS Uddin

    July 10, 2021 at 9:39 am

    More churches will burn as they should. As long as Christians continue to attack and kill others (Muslim family in London, QC mosque shooting, abortion attacks, Murder and Rape of Aboriginals, BLM protesters, attack on hijabi women etc.).

    How about Christians learn to be nice people instead of perpetual crazy creeps sourcing QAnon conspiracies about Globalists and Shari’a law all day? With a capital C!

  9. nagasa29@aol.com

    July 9, 2021 at 6:52 pm

    I would like to see everyone get to the source, this was the Federal Liberal Government of the Day that Implemented and Funded the Residential School Program, the Churches were given Authority to Run the Residential School Program.
    I do know of one of the ” Mass Unmarked Grave Sites ” that was a Cemetery with Marked Graves, but after 130 years of neglect there is not much left.

  10. Matt C

    July 9, 2021 at 1:00 pm

    The chiefs know that the “mass graves” are graveyards. If the natives want to blame someone for not maintaining the graveyards on reservation lands, they should go look in the mirror.

  11. Left Coast

    July 9, 2021 at 10:03 am

    Constant is a fool . . .

    Too bad he didn’t work as hard to improve conditions on Reservations.
    He just cashes his big cheque and goes to live in his house in the city.

    100+ years ago Indian Reservations were even worse than today . . .

    In 1906, Dr. Peter Bryce, the chief medical officer for Indian Affairs, wrote that “the Indian population of Canada has a mortality rate of more than double that of the whole population, and in some provinces more than three times.”

    So Indian kids were 3 Times more likely to DIE on the Res than in the City.

    Obviously this low life didn’t read the Reconciliation Report that came out over 5 years ago. Typical modern day marxist agitator I suspect . . .

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SLOBODIAN: Another blackface photo shows Trudeau the hypocrite

Do Canadians really want to again hand power to someone who relentlessly points a false accusing finger at them to achieve his sinister agenda but didn’t have the moral character to know blackface is a bad thing – until he got caught.




Yet another photo of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau in blackface emerged on the eve of today’s federal election.

He appears to be having a fantastic time all dressed up in a fancy Arabian costume with a crazed look in his eyes, tongue hanging out to his chin, cozied up to some guy.

It’s just more evidence (as if we even need more) that something is really, very wrong with that man who yearns to lead a 2021 majority government — both morally and in his ability to exercise good judgement. 

But there’s something else about the photo that’s telling. Two men behind him are wearing tuxedos. Their tongues are tucked in their mouths where they belong. Unlike Trudeau, they look normal, dignified, like they know how to behave out in public, like they don’t disrespect black people. 

Obviously, dressing up in this offensive manner wasn’t mandatory to attend the soiree. And obviously, Trudeau didn’t care. He was having such fun mocking a racial minority he now claims to be deeply concerned about.

Apparently, this photo was taken at an Arabian Nights-themed event held in the spring of 2001. Multiple photos of Trudeau in blackface have emerged in the past from this event and others. 

Oh, he has apologized profusely being “deeply sorry” for the bad behaviour he so passionately seemed to enjoy. But no, he never could remember how many times he behaved in this childish, offensive, racist manner.

Trudeau wasn’t some dumb, naive kid. He was a dumb, insensitive, arrogant gown man, a teacher pushing 30 who made sport of a racial minority.

And then, four years shy of 50, in 2018, he got all dressed up again, humiliated Canada and was ruthlessly mocked on the world stage when he traipsed through India, hands clasped in prayer or whatever, in blinding colourful, inappropriate Bollywood costumes.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau in India

Of course, the timing of this latest blackface photo was leaked with the intent to inflict the most damage to Trudeau as Canadians head to the polls.

Good! Too many Canadians are still blinded to his incompetence, to the disastrous path he’s leading Canada down, to his hypocrisy.

He plays Canadians like a fiddle, never missing an opportunity to create division and shed fake tears while preaching advocacy for equality and inclusion.

Trudeau can’t stop telling Canadians how racist they are. He shamelessly panders to the black community that his blackface antics insulted.

When protests lit U.S. cities on fire after the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis, instead of pointing out accusations of widespread police brutality were inflated, Trudeau jumped on the bandwagon declaring anti-black racism is alive in Canada.

He neglected to mention he was largely speaking from personal experience.

“We need to do better in Canada. Even though we’ve made strides forward in the fight against racism and discrimination, racism still exists in Canada. To young, black Canadians, I hear you when you say you are anxious and angry.”

The problem is statistics didn’t support his claims. And they still don’t. In fact, Trudeau neglected to note that the largest targeted group on the receiving end of hate crimes in Canada is the Jewish community.

Trudeau is using racism as a pretense to assault the right of Canadians to freedom of expression. If he gets his majority, Bill C-36 — an anti-hate propaganda and hate crime bill — will sail through. He tries to sell it as means combat online hate, which he vaguely defines. It is a dangerous tool to shut up whoever Trudeau and his minions disagree with or don’t like.

Someone merely fearing another person may commit a hate propaganda offence or hate crime can anonymously have their target hauled before a judge to potentially lose their freedom or face financial ruin.

Do Canadians really want to again hand power to someone who relentlessly points a false accusing finger at them to achieve his sinister agenda but didn’t have the moral character to know blackface is a bad thing — until he got caught?

How many passes is this power-hungry, divisive, costume-wearing fraud going to get? 

Slobodian is the Senior Manitoba Columnist for the Western Standard

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FILDEBRANDT: While the big parties have never agreed on more, Canadians have never agreed on less

“The Great Canadian Consensus of 2021 is a mirage however. The old parties may agree, but Canadians do not.”




Canada has had divisive elections before, but those elections typically had something to be divisive about: free trade (1988), conscription (1917), etcetera.

But if we’re going to lump 2021 into the club of particularly divisive elections, it would be difficult to add any text before the bracket. That is, I don’t know what this election was about, at least as far the the big parties go.

Certainly COVID-19 and how government should handle it has been discussed a lot, but with the exception of Maxime Bernier and his PPC, the major parties have been in remarkable consensus on all of the big issues.

The five older parties all agree with rotating lockdowns and a forced vaccine passport, with minor variations at the margin.

The five major parties all agree with perpetual deficit spending, although O’Toole’s Conservatives promise some day far into the distant future that the budget will balance itself.

The five major parties all agree with a large carbon tax on both industry and consumers.

All five major parties agree that equalization is working just fine and the West should keep paying, although O’Toole says the West deserves a little respect for its contributions.

The major difference between the five major parties mostly boils down to: “We can do what the other guys promise to do better.”

The Great Canadian Consensus of 2021 is a mirage however. The old parties may agree, but Canadians do not.

Roughly half of Canadians oppose a carbon tax, but 100% of the parties in Parliament support one.

Most conservatives support a serious timeline to balance the budget, but none of the parties in Parliament do.

The overwhelming majority of Westerners — and especially Albertans — want to either reform or abolish equalization, but not a single party in Parliament wants to even discuss it.

A clear majority of Canadians — alas — support vaccine passports, but a significant minority do not. And I have difficulty believing it’s only made up of anti-vax conspiracy theorists as the legacy media would have us believe. There are rational skeptics, and folks, like yours truly, in the minority of the majority: that is, people who’re vaccinated, but do not believe in forcing others to do so.

The anti-passport/lockdown minority were left without any voice among the establishment parties. Into this fray, the PPC has played the contrarian, inserting itself into a populist-libertarian space where the other parties fear to tread.

The party’s rallies resound with chants of “Freedom! Freedom!” as Bernier plays the role of William Wallace juicing the peasant rabble up to charge the English lines.

O’Toole’s headlong rush to the nebulous ‘centre’ could well pay off in the GTA-905 belt, but it has left a not insignificant number of otherwise traditionally Conservative voters out in the cold. His only appeal to them is their obligation to vote Tory to stop the Liberals. It will work with some voters, but it’s weak. It reduces the election to a mere personality contest between Trudeau and O’Toole.

As the PPC began its rise from obscurity to 6-11% in the polls, the legacy media began to take notice. Most leftist media personalities dismissed it as an angry and dangerous fringe unworthy of Canada’s noble progressivism. Most establishment conservative media personalities dismiss it as a vane-glorious monument to Bernier’s ego. Only a handful have bothered to scratch the surface to ask “Who are these people, and what are these people so upset about?”

The lazy armchair consensus of the punditocracy is they are just angry, white, racist, rural, old, male, right-wingers upset about how wonderfully tolerant and progressive Canada has become.

But the PPC voter profile is more complex than this trope. Certainly, the PPC has taken a bite out of the Tories, but is engaging new groups that defy an easy left-right pinning of the tail on the donkey. Young people, former Green voters, and — most notably — non-voters make up most of the party’s polling gains.

PPC Freedom Rally in Strathmore, Alberta (Image Credit: Western Standard)

The party’s Freedom Rallies are a visible display of this, if the legacy media bothered to show up.

At a rally in the small town of Strathmore, Alberta — 30 minutes east of Calgary — Bernier attracted 1,000 attendees, give or take. It had the usual assortment of farmers and blue-collar conservatives; but it had the odd hippy wearing a poncho. A few punks wearing excessive eye-shadow. Some visible minorities. And young people. Lots of young people. It was not the typical small-town Alberta conservative town hall meeting of the usual suspects.

The PPC vote may well be too diluted across Canada to elect any MPs, but it will leave a mark.

Wednesday’s leader debate between federal heads of their parties was missing one candidate, and there was no sign of leadership, opines Slobodian. —photo courtesy CBC

Legacy media using a generic story image of the five other parties leaders, but exclude Bernier — despite him polling higher than two of them — will be a difficult illusion to maintain on Tuesday.

Canadians are by and large tired of the Liberals. Trudeau’s character is unbecoming of a leader of an advanced democratic country. There is a seething angry pool of voters who want change, but not just in the personality of the man or woman at 24 Sussex. Surely O’Toole can’t form a majority government by only appealing to cranks like me, but to win he’ll probably need to offer at least something.

Instead, he offers Trudeau without the blackface. I suppose it’s an improvement.

Like 2019, this should be the Conservatives election to lose. If he comes up short tonight, O’Toole will be tempted to blame others, namely Jason Kenney and Maxime Bernier.

Kenney is no doubt playing a less than helpful role, and will quite possibly be held responsible for flipping a few seats in Alberta to the Liberals and NDP. But his disastrous leadership of the province will not be the decisive factor if the Tories lose.

And Bernier himself is unlikely to be the primary spoiler. He’s the key driving force behind the PPC’s populist insurgency, but it was the polarization around vaccine passports — and O’Toole’s middling response to it — that has driven that party’s ascendance.

O’Toole may well pull this one out, but by squeezing the sunlight out of the space between himself and Trudeau, he has not helped his chances.

Derek Fildebrandt is Publisher of the Western Standard

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McNICHOLLS: The case for a Canadian quest for the Victoria Cross

It begs the question as to why we have a Canadian Victoria Cross if the standards required to receive it are apparently unachievable?




Private Jess Larochelle of the Royal Canadian Regiment was manning an observation post in Pashmul, Afghanistan Oct. 14, 2006, when the post was destroyed in a rocket attack.

The violent impact rendered the young soldier unconscious and though he didn’t know it at the time, the blast had also broken his back.

When Larochelle came to, he tried to bring his C6 7.62-mm machine gun into action, only to discover the attack had rendered it unserviceable.

He was badly injured, under heavy fire and alone.

Beside him were 15 M72 rocket launchers, which fortunately had not detonated, and he immediately put those to use.

During the fight, which saw two members of his unit killed and three wounded, his use of the rocket launchers effectively brought the insurgent’s attack to a halt and prevented his unit from being overrun.

On March 14, 2007, Larochelle was awarded the Star of Military Valour, one of 20 awarded to Canadian forces members during the Afghan conflict.

Many readers will be familiar with the Victoria Cross, which has been around since the Crimean War, having been introduced by Queen Victoria in January of 1856. It is the highest and most prestigious award for gallantry that can be bestowed on a member of Britain’s armed forces and was previously open to members of the British Empire and Commonwealth.

The Afghanistan Veterans Association of Canada has petitioned the Governor-General of Canada to award the Victoria Cross to former Pvt. Larochelle, Nipissing, Ont. man who is in poor health.

“I was in the same company with Jess,” said Bruce Moncur, founder of the Veterans Association.

“The guy had a broken back and single-handedly fought off 40 Taliban.”

The petition has the support of Conservative leader, Erin O’Toole.

“(Jess Larochelle) is worthy of consideration for Victorian class,” said O’Toole, himself a former commissioned officer in the Royal Canadian Air Force.

“I’m very proud of the men and women who serve in our Canadian Armed Forces and those (who) served in that mission with distinction and unparalleled courage,” he said Sept. 17.

Retired General Rick Hillier is also backing the group, and said Larochelle was at the “point of the spear.”

“This young man, this baby-faced soldier, this awesome Canadian, kept the Taliban attack away and behaved in a way that was incredible,” Hillier told the CBC.

Throughout its history, 1,358 Victoria Crosses have been awarded to 1,355 individuals. Three men received a VC and bar, meaning they won it twice. Ninety-nine were Canadian, or had a close association with Canada.

While early recipients most certainly demonstrated extreme acts of gallantry, there is little doubt the criteria for consideration for the award of a VC has, over time, become decidedly more stringent.

The rules were before consideration could be given, there had to be three reports of the incident. Assuming three had their heads above ground to notice, they then had to survive the action themselves. It then had to go up the chain of command where it was frequently downgraded. In other words, lots of very brave men did not receive consideration or received lesser medals.

Unsurprisingly, the war in which most were awarded was the First World War.
Probably more surprising is the Indian Rebellion beginning in 1857 is in second place.
What will likely surprise a great many is the Second World War is in third place.

There’s no question the British VC became harder to win as its history evolved. By the time of the Second World War you almost literally had to be killed to be considered for one. I have a recollection of reading about one Second World War Bomber Command group commander who decreed there would be no live VC recipients in his command.

Nevertheless, VCs were awarded for extreme acts of courage and 16 Canadians were so honoured during the conflict. Many, including a man from the City of Duncan on Vancouver Island, my hometown for 20 years, paid with their lives.

The last Canadian to be awarded a VC was Robert Hampton Gray of Trail, BC in 1945.
‘Hammy’ Gray would also make the supreme sacrifice for the act of bravery for which he was recognized.

In 1967, it was determined Canadians would no longer be eligible for the Victoria Cross and, in 1993, a Canadian VC was created.

The Star of Military Valour, which was awarded to Larochelle, is Canada’s second-highest award for courage in the face of the enemy.

Since the Second World War, 15 British VCs have been awarded, although four of those went to Australians serving in Vietnam before Australia also created its own Victoria Cross medal.

Of the 11 British awards, four were in Korea, two in the Falklands, three in Afghanistan and one in Iraq.

Admittedly, I have not carried out a study to compare how the most recent British awards stack up against those of the 20 Canadian Star of Military Valour recipients.

We are advised by Canada’s director of Military Honours and Recognition no actions have taken place that meet the requirements for the award of a Canadian VC. However, as one of the stated criteria was to be willingly or knowingly drawing fire onto oneself to relieve others, that seems very much the description of the action involving Pvt. Larochelle.

For argument’s sake, let’s say it does not meet the Canadian military’s criteria; I am left pondering the fact that in the history of the Canadian Victoria Cross, precisely zero have been awarded.

Since creating its own Victoria Cross medals, Australia has awarded four and New Zealand one.

There is campaign underway to have Larochelle’s medal upgraded to a VC, but this has so far not met with success.

It begs the question as to why we have a Canadian Victoria Cross if the standards required to receive it are apparently unachievable?

Paul McNicholls is an author and historical researcher on Vancouver Island. His first book, Journey Through the Wilderness, was published in 2019. He’s currently working on two projects. Canada’s Monty, the story of Field Marshal Sir Bernard Montgomery’s brother, Donald, who served with the Canadian Corps during the First World War. The second work-in-progress is Canada and the Boer War. McNicholls is the recipient of the 2021 Howard Browne Medal from the Victorian Military Society.

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