Horrible Gaffe

There are so many news stories to pick from today including Trump going full mental on NBC/MSNBC and the Ukraniam attack on the Russian Black Sea Fleet Headquarters, but, this one needs to be addressed.

The above person is Anthony Rota, the House Speaker of Canada’s House of Parliament. Last Friday, Volodymyr Zelenskyy visited Parliament. While he was there, Rota introduced Yaroslav Hunka, 98 years old, who was a member of the First Ukrainian Division, in WW2. Rota called him

“a Ukrainian hero, a Canadian hero, and we thank him for all his service.”

Rota added that Hunka,

“fought for Ukrainian independence against the Russian aggressors then, and continues to support the troops today.”

Hunka received applause and a standing ovation. After the event, it came to light that the First Ukrainian Division was also known as the SS 14th Waffen Division, a voluntary unit under the Nazis. Parliament had just given a standing ovation to a Nazi. The Russians, and Putin, will jump on this for propaganda purposes. One of Putin’s alleged reasons for invading Ukraine was to rid Ukraine of Nazi influences. In other words, Rota has stepped into a massive pile of crap.

Rota, in his defense, claimed that Hunka was from his district.

“I wish to make clear that no one, including fellow parliamentarians and the Ukraine delegation, was aware of my intention or of my remarks before I delivered them. This initiative was entirely my own, the individual in question being from my riding and having been brought to my attention.”

Rota added,

“I particularly want to extend my deepest apologies to Jewish communities in Canada and around the world.” 

A spokesman for the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) stated,

“The independent Speaker of the House has apologized and accepted full responsibility for issuing the invitation and for the recognition in Parliament. This was the right thing to do,”

That is fine and dandy. But the damage has been done. Dan Panneton, a director of the Simon Wiesenthal Centre, stated,

“I think association with this unit makes you a Nazi collaborator. To be part of this unit, you swore allegiance to Hitler and you were involved with the massacre of civilians. So it doesn’t matter if you try and claim that you were defending against communism, you were still involved with the Nazi war machine. That makes you complicit.”

This following this blog are quite aware that I am a liberal. Rota meant well but he made an incredibly horrible gaffe. I am not a trumpkin who will die on the hill for all the atrocious actions committed by the likes of Trump or George Santos. So in this case, Rota needs to resign his position as House Speaker. He really does.

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