‘Send in the troops,’ former Alberta politician mulls about Kinder Morgan protests


A former Alberta energy minister is suggesting that the federal government should send in the military to if protesters continue to block the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion project.

Rick Orman, who was a Progressive Conservative MLA and cabinet member under Premier Don Getty from 1986 to 1993, appeared on CBC Edmonton radio on Monday morning and had choice words for people who are standing in opposition to the Kinder Morgan-led project.

Kinder Morgan has expressed doubt they’ll carry on with the expansion, in the face of continued opposition from the B.C. government and other groups — including some First Nations — both on the ground and in the courts.

“How do you practically get (the project built) with eco-terrorists, nationally and internationally, who are going to chain themselves to graders and backhoes,” he said.

“Morneau and Trudeau and Notley and Horgan can talk all they want, and can do Supreme Court references, but in the end are they going to send the military in to make sure this happens if there’s demonstrations to stop it?”

Orman served as Alberta’s energy minister from 1989 to 1992 before leaving provincial politics in 1993. He has worked in the energy industry ever since.

It’s not clear how Orman envisions the military being deployed, though the Emergencies Act does allow for broad measures to be taken by the military and law enforcement if the act’s powers are activated by Parliament. (Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau used similar powers granted under the act’s predecessor, the War Measures Act, in dealing with the domestic terrorist group the FLQ in October, 1970.)

Section 275 of the National Defence Act could also be used, as it allows the attorney general to deploy the military “in aid of the civil power in any case in which a riot or disturbance of the peace, beyond the powers of the civil authorities to suppress, prevent or deal with and requiring that service, occurs or is, in the opinion of an attorney general, considered as likely to occur.”

In recent years, military has deployed from time to time to assist local authorities dealing with natural disasters, like severe winter storms or flooding.

The army was called up under section 275 by the Quebec government in 1990 during the Oka crisis.

Orman also expressed reservations about Alberta Premier Rachel Notley’s talk about cutting off oil flow to B.C. — …read more

Source:: Vancouver Sun – Business

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