First Nations offer solution to end French-English squabbles
On Sept. 12, 1759, less than 10,000 French and English troops squared off outside Quebec City in what was to be the most pivotal battle of the Seven Year War. In its wake, over 1,200 soldiers would be dead including chief tacticians for both sides, General James Wolfe and Louis-Joseph, Marquis de Montcalm, and its end would influence the identity of a nation we now know as Canada.
There was going to be quite the celebration in Quebec to recognize the anniversary of the Battle of the Plains of Abraham but impassioned Quebecois, like Patrick Bourgeois, a sovereignist and member of Reseau de Resistance du Quebecois, balked at the National Battlefields Commission's organization of a reenactment, saying the event opened old wounds and lauded the reenactment's subsequent cancellation.
With one victory under their belt, Quebec sovereignists are now calling on Ottawa to hand the Plains of Abraham and its assets over to Quebec.
Indeed, Canada is a polite society and historically does not pat itself on the back with ticker tape celebrations for winning wars but, rather, acknowledges it was there and did what it had to do and calls for remembrance when anniversaries near. Trumping the English defeat over its French brethren is, perhaps, in poor taste.
But, as the dust settles over the battle field once more, a solution has been presented by the real losers of the Seven Year War: the First Nations.
Konrad Sioui, grand chief of the Huron-Wendats, has proposed to hold a burying of the hatchet ceremony and a white pine will be planted as a symbol of treaty between all parties wishing to join - "French, English, Scottish, Irish, new immigrants, sovereignists, federalists and so on."
As Mr. Sioui puts it, it is a way to bring closure between "European people who bring European wars to our territory."
The ceremony would end with all sides joining in with the smoking of a peace pipe.
Sounds like everyone, French and English included, could use it.