Sorry not good enough, say critics of Boulerice's anti-war blog post

Canada's Prime Minister Stephen Harper.

Credits: REUTERS


OTTAWA — New Democrat MP Alexandre Boulerice has apologized "for any who have been offended" by a controversial 2007 blog posting questioning the value of the Battle for Vimy Ridge, but critics say that's not enough.

In a Thursday posting via Facebook, Boulerice also said he meant no criticism of veterans in the blogpost that praises communist resistance to a First World War fought by capitalists "on the backs of workers and peasants."

The Conservatives say there should be a full retraction.

"It's not enough to be sorry that people were offended," said Carl Vallee, a spokesman for Prime Minister Stephen Harper.

On Thursday, Harper called Boulerice's blog post "outrageous, inflammatory, unacceptable."

Public Safety Minister Vic Toews reminded Boulerice that communists were anything but peaceful in 1917.

"What he seems to forget is that these same communists ... went into areas of the Ukraine and massacred hundreds and hundreds of thousands of people, including my grandparents," Toews said Friday.

Ottawa MP Pierre Poilievre also demanded Bdoulerice "explain what he meant by his comments and apologize to veterans and the victims of communism."

Poilievre says Canadians of eastern European background probably see communist activists differently than Boulerice, who says the reds "refused the slaughter" of the First World War.

"I can't imagine that with all we know about 20th century European communism why anyone would glorify any aspect of the movement," said Poilievre. "It's morally odious, historically ignorant, or both."

Boulerice is in Montreal for the NDP's 2013 policy convention.

He has not commented on the latest criticism.

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