Demonstration: Ottawa November 7 (1969)

Category:  Historical Reprints.
SourceStraight Talk! The Official Bulletin Of The Edmund Burke Society.
Editor:  Joseph A. Genovese
Associate Editors:  F. Paul Fromm, D. Clarke Andrews
Typist:  Veronica O’Hare
Distribution Manager:  Jeff Goodall
Writers:  EBS members and friends
Directors:  The Council of the EBS
Volume II Number 3, December 1969

The Edmund Burke Society is a conservative organization unaffiliated with any political party.  We are dedicated to the principles of individual freedom and responsibility, free enterprise, and firm ACTION against all tyrannies, especially Communism and all its manifestations in Canada and abroad.

The E.B.S. is financed mainly through small donations from generous Canadians.  Straight Talk!  is produced by voluntary labour.

Report from Montreal

From our Montreal Correspondent

A11 through this decade, Canadian anti-communists, usually led by activist Ukrainian Canadians, have demonstrated outside the Soviet Embassy in Ottawa on November 7, the night on which the Red diplomats throw a cocktail party in celebration of the Russian Revolution.  For free men, this night has a different significance:  it marks the beginning of the present agony for the shackled Russian and non-Russian peoples — an agony that Soviet imperialism has spread to much of Eastern Europe, and, because of the laxity and weakness of many Western leaders, is today diligently and successfully exporting to Africa and Latin America.

The Council of the Edmund Burke Society decided that, this year, the time has come to flex our growing muscles and to test the dedication and activism of our members:  in short, we decided to send a contingent to lead a demonstration against the Soviet embassy.  As November 7 fell on Friday, ethnic anti-communist participation promised to be weak.  Our Council felt that Canada would not afford to suffer a commemoration of communism to go by without a protest.  What galled us was that many Canadian officials and citizens would be joining the Soviet slaughterers in their festivities.  We believe that no loyal Canadian should join in this obscene celebration of tyranny.  Our aim was to embarrass those Canadians who, forsaking the traditions of freedom and justice that have built Canada, join the Soviets each November 7 to munch caviar and gulp vodka — produced by the forced labour of slaves.  To kill two birds in one trip we also decided to protest the proposed “hate-bill” on Capitol Hill.

Ukrainian activists underwrote the cost of a chartered bus, but fell short in providing the man-power.  At our November 4 meeting, the Council of the E.B.S. asked for volunteers for Ottawa.  Factory-workers and students stepped forward.  A painter, a musician, a writer, students — everyone who went to Ottawa made a personal sacrifice.  Thirteen E.B.S. members were joined by three Ukrainians.  No member who gave his word to come reneged.  This is a clear sign that our members are developing a serious attitude to politics and a hardened esprit de corps.

At the November 4 meeting, the Council urged all members who could not participate, to give generously to help send tho shock force to Ottawa.  An army must have a supply base behind it.  Members were urged to go out and solicit contributions from more cautious anti-communists.  The time has come for others to share the burden.  If the Edmund Burke Society is willing to be out in the front lines, older people or less courageous types must take a greater part in financing and equipping us.  The response at the meeting was phenomenal.  Tens and fives flew at the collection bowl.

November 7 dawned in Toronto and shed a weak sun into the cool morning.  We assembled outside the Ukrainian Hall on College, east of Bathurst.  Signs, sticks, pamphlets, flags, and warm clothing were all stowed aboard and by 9.45 our expeditionary force was on the road.  Rain dogged us all the way; but, it could in no way cool the good fellowship and friendly conversations amongst our group in the bus.

We reached Ottawa about 3.00 p.m. and set out immediately for the Parliament Buildings.  There we disembarked and moved on the double to take up positions outside the Parliament Building.  We quickly set up a picket line, while Paul Fromm went indoors to phone the press.  The rain threatened but held off in the hour and a half we were there.  Creditiste M.P., Andre Fortin, was the only representative to come out to see us.  Advance letters had informed all four parties of our presence and invited a representative to meet with us to discuss the “hate-bill”.  Our signs denouncing the totalitarian “hate-bill” were cleverly and artistically conceived:  “Hate-bill — hate or criticism where do you draw the line,” etc.  Ralph Cowan who was visiting Ottawa also came out and spoke to wish us well.

At four thirty, our well-disciplined ranks boarded the bus and crawled through Ottawa’s spaghetti-like streets in rush-hour traffic to the U.S.S.R. embassy.  We immediately took up positions with a second set of signs and leaflets and began picketing.  Here we stayed for three hours, through intermittent rain, until eight o’clock.  The Ottawa police were edgy and nervous.  They refused [to let] us to lean a bag of pamphlets up against the embassy’s iron fence:  that would be trespassing we were informed.  C.B.C. T.V. took extensive film footage of this demonstration.  We were visited by reporters from the Ottawa Le Droit, the Ottawa Journal, and the Ottawa Citizen, as well as by two snotty representatives from Canadian Press.  Goons inside the embassy shot film of us from a fourth floor window, while the R.C.M.P. kept an eye on us from tho top floor of a house across the road.

Another advance call to Ottawa paid off:  Telegram correspondent Lubor Zink joined us on the picket line and extended his sincere encouragement.  As the “beautiful people” began to roll up in their expensive cars to join the Red butchers in their celebration of infamy, we brandished our placards and howled insults at them.  The jewellery bedecked in-crowd stared at our group, startled as our ranks roared “traitors”, “quislings!”; “they have run out of vodka, you’ll have to drink blood … the blood of innocent people.  An officer in the Canadian Armed Forces winced as one of our members, just a year out of the army, yelled:  “Men like you are why Canadians are joining the U.S. army … you don’t even know what side you’re on.”

Our members hooted as External affairs Minister, mealy-mouthed Mitchell Sharp, stomped up the steps into the embassy.  Our shouting had made him furious and he pulled his fedora down tightly over his forehead and scurried into the embassy to toast the Kremlin bullies to whom his weak and witless foreign policy has given endless aid and comfort.

The saddest moment of the night involved a one-time hero to Canadian anti-communists.  In his dotage, huge and magnificent in his dark blue suit, stood the man from Prince Albert, John Diefenbaker.  His presence hurt and angered us.  Perhaps, he was involved in some private attempt to wring concessions from the Russians for those behind the Iron Curtain.  We cannot judge him, but we let him hear our vocal disapproval. 1  He smiled and waved to us in a friendly way.  An enigma — it’s hard to know what to make of his behaviour.

We arrived back in Toronto at 2.00 am., bone-weary but happy.  The discipline, endurance, and the esprit de corps displayed by our members was highly encouraging.  The Reds may yap about “community”; they may mythologize about their student-worker alliance; but, in reality, without loud rhetoric, it is the Edmund Burke Society that has forged a true spirit of co-operation and fellowship among people of vastly different ethnic and economic backgrounds.  Painter, musician, student and writer were one team, united, effective, and happy on November Seventh, 1969.

– 30 –


1  ACA Admin:  Diefenbaker’s presence at the celebration of the Russian Revolution at the Soviet Embassy might begin to be explained by the fact that his government dismissed the RCMP’s Featherbed File out-of-hand, although it claimed to expose profound Soviet penetration of Canada’s federal government, from the top down.

A sentence or two out of a draft article (circa 1979) on the RCMP’s Featherbed File by the late Peter Worthington has this to say about John Diefenbaker:

“Operation Featherbed, a 14-year RCMP investigation into suspected subversives in high places, tried to warn the federal government it was being systematically infiltrated.

But the governments of John Diefenbaker, Lester Pearson, and Pierre Trudeau dismissed the Featherbed warnings as unsubstantiated Communist witch-hunting.”

To call an investigation of Communist subversion of a nation “witch-hunting” is typical Communist line to protect the subversion.  Yet, three “governments” of Canada adopted typical Communist line to refuse to investigate RCMP warnings of serious infiltration.

We can understand this from the “government” of Soviet Agent Pearson (exposed to the FBI by Elizabeth Bentley) and from the “government” of Mole for Moscow Pierre Elliott Trudeau.  But indeed, for Diefenbaker to be on board with suppressing a police investigation of deep government subversion suggests that Diefenbaker was not a very avid “anti-Communist”.

A scan of Worthington’s draft article is online:

Additional evidence that John Diefenbaker was controlled opposition is the June 14th, 1970 clip from Toronto Sun reporter, Douglas Fisher entitled “Gouzenko Felt Cheated”:

The government issue was more turgid.  They had been very disappointed that during the years of the Diefenbaker government, they had had no more recognition.  No one had come round to hear their arguments that there had been a massive cover up within the senior Ottawa bureaucracy, organized as they saw it by Lester Pearson and Norman Robertson (clerk of the Privy Council during the spy uproar).  The Gouzenkos were convinced that several mandarins in the highest positions in the land were being protected by the ban against revealing all the documentation Igor had brought to the government and the subsequent proceedings of the Taschereau inquiry.

That makes three strikes against Diefenbaker.  (1.)  He celebrates the Bolshevik Revolution over at the Soviet Embassy;  (2.)  He dismissed the RCMP’s Featherbed File out-of-hand;  (3.)  He expresses no concern that vital information on the top-down Soviet penetration of Canada, produced by Gouzenko and the Taschereau Commission, has been squelched.  But, of course, the best is that the EBS caught him entering the Red Embassy to celebrate the 1917 Communist conquest of Russia.


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