This is a blog dedicated to a personal interpretation of political news of the day. I attempt to be as knowledgeable as possible before commenting and committing my thoughts to a day's communication.

Sunday, July 12, 2015

Countering The Terrorist Threat in Canada

"[The federal government should] work with the provinces and the Muslim communities to investigate the options that are available for the training and certification of imams in Canada."
"The committee heard testimony from members of the Muslim community and others that some foreign-trained imams have been spreading extremist religious ideology and messages that are not in keeping with Canadian values."
"These extreme ideas are said to be contributing to radicalization and raise serious concerns if they continue to go unchecked."
"The committee believes that having more informed ‘eyes and ears’ is vital to terrorism prevention."
"[The government should investigate and discourage the spread of violent extremism] especially the ideology promoted by the global Islamist fundamentalist movement. [Ottawa should work with Muslim communities in the creation of an] effective counternarrative [to denounce this extremism]."
Senate committee on national security and defence interim report, recommendation no.9 

"Countering the Terrorist Threat in Canada", the interim report by the Senate committee on national security and defence includes a total of 25 recommendations that have resulted from months of study, presentations and interviews with people as diverse as the heads of Canada's intelligence services, policing, Muslim imams and community leaders and others from Canadian society, all concerned to render for the consideration of the committee their experience and perceptions.

Government is called upon to forbid funding for radical groups in Canada by foreign sources. It is challenged to launch an investigation into the Muslim Brotherhood and other like fundamentalist Islamist organizations creating havoc in the Middle East and with a presence in Canada, including groups that have been declared terrorist groups which clearly have supporters within the Muslim population in Canada, like Hamas and Hezbollah. 

The 22nd of the recommendations speaks of "legislation to protect Canadians who are participating in the public discourse from vexatious litigation", such as the complaint brought to the Canadian Human Rights Commission against Maclean's magazine and writer Mark Steyn by the Canadian Islamic Congress in response to a 2006 magazine article titled "The Future Belongs to Islam" which spoke of Islamic domination of Europe and the West verging on a demographic shift.

The Congress's assertion that the article was likely to expose Muslims to hatred and contempt, despite the fact that nothing in the article reflected anything but reality, was rejected by the Rights Commission. The article claimed that Muslims would eventually dominate Western countries, quoting a European imam who is alleged to have remarked that Muslims are reproducing like "mosquitoes". The Commission dismissed the complaint on the basis that "when considered as a whole and in context [the views in the article] are not of an extreme nature, as defined by the Supreme Court".

The vexatious nature of the complaint and the threat behind it that the Islamic community through its representatives would not tolerate any comments relating to its unwillingness to assimilate into the culture and accept the values of the countries absorbing migrants, and the threats arising out of Islamic theology and the incitement to jihad in the Koran, along with the disaffection of many Muslim youth, resentful and complaining of Islamophobia, are not to be broached.

One of the recommendations is for the publication of a "Wanted Terrorist List" of Canadians distinguishing themselves by warranting inclusion in terrorism-recognized incidents causing warrants for their apprehension, is yet another urgent item that requires consideration. But it seems that the single most noted and critically commented upon recommendation is that which calls "for the training and certification of imams in Canada".

The explanation included that some "foreign-trained imams have been spreading extremist religious ideology and messages that are not in keeping with Canadian values", rather understates the problem of infiltration into Canada by recruiters for jihad, informing and instructing interested would-be-jihadis of their strict obligation to respond to the call to jihad and how they may best set about  achieving that goal.

The complaints centre around government inserting itself in a matter of religious faith, interfering in people's freedom to conduct themselves as their faith demands and potentially contesting freedom of religion. If one faith's penchant to persuade its adherents to act in a manner that threatens the well-being of the rest of a society is interpreted as untouchable because it hinges on freedom of religion, Canada has an urgent need to address the fact that one group's perceived entitlement cannot infringe on the security and safety of the majority.

Nowhere, however, is there the suggestion that government undertake to oppress a religious group by unreasonable demands. Under the circumstances as described by the committee, irrespective of the Liberal segment's dissenting opinion, the recommendation is that governments at all levels work in conjunction with the Muslim communities and its religious representatives, despite which the push-back from those sources is shouting 'racism'.

Pointing out that Canadians of Islamic faith are self-radicalizing through impressions and materials sourced through the Internet and made available by jihadists through channels known for their fanatical calls to violence against non-Muslims, simply points out the extent and breadth of the problem for there are a number of fronts which conspire to threaten the security and stability of Canada and its citizens. All of which require attention, and urgently.

Given the fact that Muslims themselves are targets of violence, particularly through the vicious hatred so evident in the sectarian divide with thousands of people in the Middle East threatened and savaged by Islamist extremists for whom no cruelty goes beyond the permissible in performing obeisance to Islamist doctrine, it would seem far more useful for the Muslim community to participate in and become part of a larger effort on the part of all Canadians to deal with this barbarity.

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