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  • Kate 17:10 on 2020-01-05 Permalink | Reply  

    A demonstration against a war in Iran was held in Phillips Square mid Sunday.

    • Kate 12:14 on 2020-01-05 Permalink | Reply  

      This week, CBC looked back to the days in WWII when Italian men were interned on St Helen’s Island.

      Le Devoir’s Louis Cornellier writes about Frère Marie-Victorin, whom he lauds as a culture hero in Quebec. Marie-Victorin wrote the massive tome Flore laurentienne about native plants and was instrumental in creating the botanical garden. A recent biography also shows a complicated guy, a celibate brother obsessed with sex.

      The Centre d’histoire examines a single photo of Ste-Catherine Street in 1964 vs today: the Capitol Cinema, Dunn’s and the Black Orchid, only one of them still in existence.

      • Michael Black 12:48 on 2020-01-05 Permalink

        I thought it was interesting they used the island, which probably made it harder to scape from.

        There wereGerman POWs in Manitoba. Years ago I looked in a tobacco tin that had always been around, and saw a small bit of chain. What a waste, using that for a useless piece of chain. Then I noticed a piece of paper, my father’s handwriting. The chain was part of a longer length used to chain a German POW. It had been done in response to Hitler ordering Allied POWs be chained. I once read a book that explained the specifics, but can’t remember the explanation. The note mentioned who had saved the chain, an uncle of my father’s, one of the Ross’s.

        We do get a skewed view of POW camps, because the escape films were generally at those for officers. The Geneva Census convention didn’t allow for officers to.do labor other than things like cooking their own meals, etc. Which gave more time to plan escapes, and leisure activity to hide the escape work. (And an interesting aside, officers were given a bit of training on evasiin and escape, and the Red Cross packages were used to get some items into the camps. Sometimes hidden in the cardboard, other things like chocolate actually sent to bribe guards. So “The Great Escape” is fairly realistic, except it was British officers that escaped.)

        Anyone, enlisted men where used for more labor, kind of useful when most able bodiee men were in the armed forces. Which probably explains a POW camp in Manitoba, where there were farms.

      • Kate 12:54 on 2020-01-05 Permalink

        The island was certainly a convenient way to put prisoners somewhere close to civilization but not easily escaped from. I wondered about the gardening/farming: were the men growing food mostly to feed themselves? Why, when they left, were cultivated vegetable gardens abandoned? It sounds like a great idea now to have some vegetables growing on those islands, but that’s not likely to happen again.

        The article does suggest a certain ambivalence. The men were prisoners, but at the same time, were living in a safe place far away from war. But it also suggests none of them wanted to stay in Canada after the war was over. I wonder if it was even an option. By then, the Canadian authorities must have realized these men posed no threat, but the men may not have had any desire to lengthen their stay.

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