DON'T COME ANY CLOSER, THIS IS AN EMBASSY.
No problem sir, I'll stay right here. An embassy, you say?
YES, THIS IS SOVRAN SOIL, AND I HAVE FILED A NOTICE OF UNDER-
I'm sorry to interrupt you, but I've brought a second bullhorn here so you don't have to shout; can I have it brought over to you or anything?
NO THANK YOU.
All right then, you were saying?
I HAVE FILED A NOTICE OF UNDERSTANDING AND INTENT WITH HER MAJESTY QUEEN ELIZABETH II DECLARING THIS CABIN AND THE CLEARING SURROUNDING IT TO BE THE EMBASSY OF A SOVRAN NATION.
IT WAS NOTARIZED BY MISTER ISAAC J-
That's quite all right sir, I have no interest in disputing the validity of your claim, but I do have a couple things I need to clear up; can I have your name, please?
DO YOU HAVE A CLAIM AGAINST ME?
Can you explain what that means?
UNDER COMMON LAW I HAVE THE RIGHT TO ASK IF YOU HAVE A CLAIM OF PROPERTY AGAINST ME.
Well sir, this cabin and trapline are registered to a Brian Cogswell, and I need to establish that you aren't him.
THAT'S NOT MY NAME, AND I FILED A LIEN ON THIS PROPERTY PRIOR TO MY NOTIFICATION OF UNDERSTANDING AND INTENT...
...AND COPIES WERE ALSO FILED WITH PRIME MINISTER STEPHEN HARPER AND THE GOVERNOR GENERAL, SO THIS IS NOW AN EMBASSY.
I'm not a lawyer, but I don't think that actually gives you the authority to take a cabin away from a man who built it with his own two hands.
HIS OWNERSHIP IS A CONTRACT UNDER STATUTE LAW, WHICH IS CONTRACTUAL, AND AS SUCH IS ONLY APPLICABLE TO INDIVIDUALS WHO CONSENT TO BE GOVERNED BY IT.
I'm to assume that you don't, then?
THAT IS CORRECT! I AM A FREEMAN ON THE LAND, AND I HAVE EMANCIPATED MYSELF BY DISTINGUISHING MY LEGAL PERSON FROM MY PHYSICAL BODY, AND EXEMPTING MYSELF FROM NATIONAL OBLIGATION.
Thank you for clearing that up. Could I have your name, please?
MY STRAWMAN NAME IS JACOB OF THE FAMILY BRONZYN.
YOU NEED TO UNDERSTAND THAT THIS NAME DOES NOT REPRESENT MY LEGAL ENTITY, ONLY THE NAME FROM MY CERTIFICATE OF BIRTH.
That's quite all right Mr. Bronzyn, I am not here to interpret legality, I've just been asked to get you out of Mr. Cogswell's cabin.
NO PEACE OFFICER CAN ENFORCE ADMIRALTY LAW UPON THE UNWILLING! WE ARE PREPARED TO DEFEND THIS SOVRAN STATE BY FORCE OF ARMS IF NECESSARY!
I understand and I do apologize, but there seems to have been a misunderstanding; I'm not a peace officer, Mr. Bronzyn.
YOU NEED TO IDENTIFY YOURSELF.
Of course, sir. My name is Captain Marc Gunderson, and I am here representing Her Majesty's Royal Canadian Army.
I said, my name is...
WHY IS THE ARMY HERE?
This is only a guess, but I assume it is because you are refusing to leave property that belongs to someone else, and because when the Fish & Wildlife officers asked you to vacate the area, you told them that this was the land of a sovereign nation.
EMBASSIES ARE TREATED AS FOREIGN SOIL AS A MATTER OF INTERNATIONAL TREATY.
Yes sir, and as I said, I am not here to dispute the legitimacy of your claim; my job is to defend Canada against foreign aggression.
WHAT? WHAT AGGRESSION?
When you unilaterally claimed that soil for your embassy Mr. Bronzyn you were taking it away from the nation of Canada. I'm here to get it back.
YOU HAVE NO AUTHORITY TO FORCE MY COMPLIANCE TO LAWS THAT DO NOT APPLY TO ME!
Mr. Bronzyn, we've been over this. I am not here to arrest you.
THEN WHY ARE YOU HERE?
I'm here to defend my nation's sovereignty. My job is to remove all uninvited foreign nationals from this area using, and I am quoting from my operational orders here, "any and all means necessary".
As such, if I need to use force to accomplish the directive I have been tasked with, there is, unfortunately, a very good chance of you and anyone else in that cabin being injured or killed. You've stated your willingness to use potentially lethal force to defend what you refer to as your embassy, and I have no intention of risking the lives of my men unnecessarily.
I DON'T KNOW WHAT YOU MEAN BY THAT.
Well Mr. Bronzyn I don't know who or what you you might have in that cabin, so in addition to a number of highly trained, highly motivated and well equipped men and women, I have also brought two 'Coyote' reconnaissance vehicles. Have you ever seen one of these?
ARE THEY LIKE A TANK?
Still, I hope you don't think a log cabin will provide much cover against a 25 mm chain-fed autocannon. Now, allowing for the possibility that you may have reinforced your position, I took the liberty of requisitioning a case of armor piercing discarding sabot rounds that we normally use against other armoured vehicles and the like. Mr. Cogswell will almost certainly have to rebuild from scratch.
THIS IS OPPRESSION! YOU ARE GOING TO TURN THIS PATCH OF WOODS INTO A NEW TIANAMEN SQUARE! I AM RECORDING THIS CONVERSATION SO THE TRUTH WILL BE KNOWN!
Very good sir; my adjutant is doing the same with a high-definition video camera.
Although he is asking me to turn on some of the vehicle spotlights because the cloud cover is apparently impacting his 'white balance'. Recording these interactions can help to clear up any misunderstandings after the fact, and can also be useful for training purposes. This is not some sort of conspiratorial 'black helicopter' operation; we are doing our level best to keep everything by the book and above-board.
Mr. Bronzyn it is important for you to understand that once I commit my forces, you will be treated as an enemy combatant, and not as a Canadian citizen, which I believe to be in keeping with your wishes. If you should be captured alive, you will be given any needed medical aid, and then treated as a prisoner-of-war.
AND THEN WHAT?
Honestly, I have no idea. Like I said, sir, I am not a lawyer or a peace officer, so your future disposition is a matter far above my pay grade. Now, as you clearly feel you are defending your own national interests, I will fully understand if you reject my invitation to surrender yourself into my custody, but formality demands that I give you that opportunity before I give the order to open fire.
Mr. Bronzyn, will you kindly come out of that cabin with your hands raised above your head?
CAN WE HAVE A MINUTE TO THINK ABOUT IT?
By all means, take your time. I'm not in any rush, but some of my men are keen to get back to base before the hockey game starts.
|Photo by Colleen De Neve, Calgary Herald|
(Author's note: This little tale is not presented as a recommended course of action, and shows a gross oversimplification of military authority as well as almost total ignorance of international law, but I was unable to resist following through on a daydream initiated under the auspices of 'wouldn't it be funny if...?'
In addition, I take full responsibility for any inaccuracies in my depiction of how our Royal Canadian Army would actually conduct themselves in such a ludicrous situation!)