A Canadian Citizen
Thanks to his father's determination that all his children should become jihadists, intimately involved in learning how to handle weapons, how to make explosive devices, trained in battle techniques, and exposed to guerrilla operations and a willingness to become martyrs, Omar Khadr was, at the age of fifteen, a fledgling but determined jihadist.
Boys and youth in the Middle East and Africa where tribal antipathies and religious fanaticism initiate them to early adulthood are commonly enough involved in violence. It seems, moreover, to be bred in the genes. Omar Khadr appeared a physical child at age 15, but he was modelled, like his older brothers, to become another jihadist in the legion of Islamist honour that Osama bin Laden and al-Qaeda exemplified.
We are all, in greater degree, the result of our early exposure to certain values and priorities. And although we also are imbued with free will, the freedom of our willingness to resist and deny what our parental authority figures whom we emulate and usually admire and seek to please, is all too often lacking. As gregarious and emotional creatures we want to do as we're told.
Which is what Omar Khadr did. But while in incarceration alongside other jihadists he learned some tricks of the manipulative trade. To elicit sympathy from the wider public by claiming to have been abused and tortured. To use his youth while he could, to bring empathy to his cause, representing himself as a helpless youth who had no choice but to obey orders.
He was indoctrinated by birth and by a lifetime of exposure to the usual Islamist litany of grievances against the West, and taught to think of himself proudly as one of Islam's mujahadeen. His sublime obligation to the divine was manifest in his having defied the American soldiers he and his Taliban comrades came up against, rather than surrender when it was clear they were defeated.
He was prepared to martyr himself on the battlefield, and he is now busily being martyred in life. He will too soon return to Canada, to resume life here, which was interrupted when his father yanked his family back to their Islamic roots, as a companion to Osama bin Laden. His mother, complicit with his father in grooming him as a jihadist, still believes in that mission and hisses contempt for Canadian values.
This is the sizzling atmosphere of detestation and commitment to fanaticism that Omar Khadr will be returning to, where his mother and his grandmother can continue to foster in him the resentment and violence that his father originally imbued him with. This is what is returning to Canada.
This is a citizen of Canada.