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.

Wednesday, December 16, 2015

At Risk - But Armed To The Teeth

"The nature of the threat is more acute, in that ISIL in-theatre is under pressure [from western militaries], that they are demonstating their willingness to launch overseas attacks."
"That's not lost on us, our partners [the Canadian Security Intelligence Service] and others. And that is really upping the stakes."
"One of the features of terrorism is that there is zero room for failure. We're not accepting any terrorist attacks. Canadians have been reassured by some very successful [counter-terrorism] operations, between CSIS and the RCMP in recent years, and that's good.
"Whether or not that is sustainable ... certainly you don't want to have an attack that's preventable, and that's how I'm approaching this."
"And so that's why [nearly] 600 officers from organized-crime cases [have been reassigned] into counter-terrorism and making sure that if we have information that's actionable, that it's actioned."
RCMP Commissioner Bob Paulson
RCMP Commissioner Bob Paulson in his office. Wayne Cuddington / Ottawa Citizen

There is certainly no denying that Canada has had its share of terrorist events, has recognized that within its population there are Muslims who have immigrated to Canada, or were born in Canada, raised and educated in Canada, who have been lured by the adventure promised through jihad to depart Canada for more exciting pastures. Many of the attacks planned to take place in Canada by Canada-born Muslims, by converts to Islam, by immigrants have been apprehended before they could be carried to fruition.

On the other hand, there have been notable exceptions, and two in particular that shook the country to its very core of confidence in its security. The killing of two active military servicemen, one of them on duty before the National Cenotaph and the subsequent storming of a single jihadist into Parliament sending the entire core of the national capital into lockdown lasting long after the gunman was killed because of the uncertainty surrounding the attack.

Canada hasn't suffered the casualty rate of Britain, the U.S., Spain or France or Indonesia, but what Canada has suffered is the loss of its innocence, that it is far removed from the theatre of violent Islamist jihad. Now it is well enough known that the theatre has moved branch offices, silently infiltrating everywhere in the world. Now it is known that mayhem can erupt anywhere at any time. Now the public has been forewarned.

Intelligence gathering and caution respecting potential attacks are high on the agenda in Paris and America. Yet both, though having ample resources and having noted the suspicious nature of Muslim extremists on their watch lists still somehow missed imminent plans for atrocities, taking them off guard and incapable of reacting in a preventive mode. The carnage left by these most recent attacks adds to the success of inspired but sometimes unorganized jihadists, as well as meticulously carried-out mass attacks.

And despite what Commissioner Paulson says in assurance, as he must, to attempt to instill some semblance of confidence back into the public mind, that haunting realization that evil lurks cannot be entirely dispelled. That one lone gunman was able to spring his way past a phalanx of armed guards; police, RCMP, military, to conduct his personal jihad was but a reminder that not everything can be prevented, and diligence can go just so far.

Parliament Hill, declares the Commissioner could not again see a successful attack. Security has been overhauled and is now attack-proof. All points of entry are monitored, guns prepared. "We're armed to the teeth", he says. So are they, unfortunately. Armed with the passion of rage and belief they are divinely inspired; the arms they use are of secondary value to their goals' achievement.

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