As most Canadian are well aware, we lost two soldiers recently on our own shores. Warrant Officer Patrice Vincent was run over and killed as he departed a government office building in Quebec. The deranged attacker, who was later killed in a confrontation with police, was a Muslim convert who RCMP had investigated as an Islamic State sympathizer.
On Wednesday, another crazed man with ties to the Islamic religion shot and killed Argyll and Sutherland Highlander Corporal Nathan Cirillo as he stood guard at the National War Memorial in
Ottawa. The attacker then stormed into Parliament, obviously looking to wreak more deadly destruction before he was shot dead by the House of Commons Sergeant-at-Arms outside the doors of the NDP caucus meeting.
The deadly week has brought home the true cost that Canadians have paid in recent and past conflicts. And the continuing need for vigilance and protection of our democratic rights and
freedoms that a very small group of idealists and mentally disturbed people around the world have vowed to destroy. Families have been shattered; children have lost fathers and the country has lost two valuable members of our armed forces. We also mourn the 158 Canadian soldiers lost overseas, between 2002 and 2011, to the conflict in Afghanistan. And sadly, few people expect that the tragic deaths overseas or here in our own country have ended, as we continue to deal with the scourge of global Islamic fanaticism.
Across the country, ordinary citizens are stepping up and in an act of honour to the memory of Cpl. Cirillo and WO Vincent, are spending time at local cenotaphs, honouring those who give their time, and in some cases their lives, to those who stand between us and religious genocidal imperialists intent on butchering anyone who stands in their way, including women and children, in order to establish a global Islamic caliphate.
In Ottawa, Quebec and Hamilton, the pipes will sound the sad lament for these lost men, and as fellow Canadians look on, many will reflect on those lives lost here and outside our borders. As I play the pipes at Nov 11 ceremonies, I too will remember Cirillo and Vincent, and the thousands of others who served or gave their lives in the many conflicts since Confederation.