Check out the bottom of this post to see the latest updates on the ground.
U.S. President George W. Bush swooped into town Tuesday for a whirlwind visit designed to begin mending international fences in the wake of the Iraq war. Bush landed at Ottawa airport aboard Air Force 1 and received a red carpet welcome from Gov. Gen. Adrienne Clarkson.
Bush is in Canada for just over 24 hours to road test a message he will bring to Europe later about international co-operation in Iraq, Afghanistan and other trouble spots.
The CBC also has a blog “on the street”:
It’s definitely an event.
As touchdown approaches, people who work downtown start trickling out of office buildings to catch a glimpse of the Bush motorcade. Out they come, assessing the scene and the best location for counting the cars and police motorcycles as they rush by.
I met a young man who recently moved to Ottawa from St. Catharines. He was here over two hours before the motorcade was scheduled to arrive. He’s never seen one before, and figured this one will be worth it.
No planes overhead. David Bowie’s Rebel Rebel is heard on Parliament Hill from some protesters’ sound system.
Five minutes until Bush lands.
The Ottawa Citizen has a “Protest Blog”. Might be worth keeping an eye on throughout the day as they follow the protesters around Ottawa.
The CBC will also have live coverage of the Presidents news conference at 2PM EST. You can listen to it via the Live CBC Radio link on their main website.
President Bush’s trip North of the border will be akin to a polite dance where he’ll try to avoid missteps that could create more anti-Americanism in Canada. For his part, Canadian Prime Minister Paul Martin will want to avoid looking as if he’s bending to U.S. will on trade and security issues.
Wait.. hold on… they’re using the same AP story… LOL… but I thought, bah. I’ll find another one.
The visit is focused on creating goodwill, but thorny economic issues probably will come up at the meeting between leaders of the two nations that have the world’s largest trading partnership — more than $1 billion in business a day.
LOL.. the same AP article. God. How boring.
Lets go somewhere else…
US President George W Bush is due to arrive in Canada on his first ever official visit there.
The Canadian government strongly opposed the Iraq war and the visit is being seen as an attempt by both sides to patch up relations.
Opinion polls suggest that a large majority of Canadians wanted Mr Bush to lose the presidential election.
The president will not address parliament in the capital, Ottawa, because of the risk of being heckled.
President Bush made a funny!
I’d like to thank the Canadian people who came out to wave, with all five fingers, for their hospitality
That’s pretty good.. I gotta hand it to him.
Here’s some continued reaction from the CBC post-news conference.
Canada, US ‘standing together’: Bush
There are reports of a scuffle of some sort at one of the government buildings between some protesters and police… check those CBC and Ottawa Citizen blogs for updates.
From the Ottawa Citizen blog:
Well, the protesters thought George W. Bush is inside the Conference Centre and they were determined to make a stand. A few of the rowdies at the front of the line decided to confront the police and there have been arrests and at least one person has been pepper sprayed. Now, a truck with a loudspeaker in the back is urging people to move toward the Museum of Civilization, where Mr. Bush and Paul Martin and 700 other people are having dinner. “We want to stay on the streets today!” the truck booms. ” If you want to stay on the streets today, follow the sound truck.” Here we go …
Blogging… the future of live news!
I’d like to point out that a poll published in yesterdays National Post showed that 71% of Canadians considered America to be “our closest friend”. Unfortunately I can’t find an online version of the article.. but it was on the front page of yesterdays Post.
Make sure you check out the CBCs’ “PHOTOLOG” as well, it’s linked on the right-hand side of their Blog page. Has some nice, and funny pictures of the streets of Ottawa.
A Top Ten list from the Ottawa Citizen on the best protest signs:
- 10) Buck Fush
- 9) Bare feet, no arms
- 8) I support fair trade: Bush for anyone.
- 7) Bare feet, not arms
- 6) Don’t arrest me, I’m not the war criminal
- 5) No Bush, know Peace
- 4) The Emperor has no brains
- 3) Evil-lution equals Bush
- 2) Do not prey for America
- 1) America, it’s time to shave your Bush