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.

Thursday, July 27, 2017

Insanely Delusional? No, Simply Wedded to Jihad

"He understands that to be a delusion [that at age 33 he would be lifted into heaven]. He understands it is currently 2017 and that his previous delusions in that regard were products of his mental illness."
"The diagnosis of schizophrenia has now been confirmed by a number of doctors. He has been treated with anti-psychotic medication and he is certainly doing much better than when I spoke to him soon after the verdict."
"I think it will be important to look at the progress he has made since coming under treatment for schizophrenia and the results of the treatment with anti-psychotics. That may also give us some insight into what bearing those mental health issues were having on him during the trial."
"[Esseghaier's mental state meant he was not] meaningfully present [during his trial, unable to] fully engage [with the justice system]. I think there were errors made at the trial in that regard."
Erin Dann, Toronto lawyer court-appointed as an amicus curaie, Ontario Court of Appeal

"At the time I filed that notice, I was very ill. I suffer from schizophrenia. I was suffering from delusions and believed that I would die and my soul would ascend to heaven on December 25, 2014. Because of this delusion, I did not believe that the life sentence imposed was real and did not want to acknowledge the existence or legality of the sentence by appealing it."
“I was certified and treated with anti-psychotic medication [in prison]. Initially, I didn’t agree with this treatment. However, I now see its benefit. I acknowledge that I have significant mental health issues and I understand that I need to continue to take the medication prescribed to me in order to stay well."
"[I failed to file a sentence appeal earlier as I was] was very unwell and didn’t understand the nature of the sentence imposed on me. I was unable to make rational choices. I used to believe I was similar to the prophets Jesus and Joseph."
Chiheb Esseghaier, Tunisian convicted of terrorism plots

Tunisian Chiheb Esseghaier was in Canada on a student visa, enrolled as a PhD student doing doctoral research in biotechnology at the Institut national de la recherche scientifique. He was part author of a number of published biology research papers focusing on HIV and cancer detection, and as well studied the detection of influenza A virus through graduate research at the University of Sherbrooke. All these brilliant collegial minds of which he was a part weren't able to detect that this man had a mental illness, evidently.

Chiheb Esseghaier, convicted of plotting a terror attack on a rail target, is seen in this file photo from April 2013. After undergoing mental health treatment, Esseghaier is seeking to appeal his life sentence.
Chiheb Esseghaier, convicted of plotting a terror attack on a rail target, is seen in this file photo from April 2013. After undergoing mental health treatment, Esseghaier is seeking to appeal his life sentence.  (Chris Young / THE CANADIAN PRESS)
Back then when he was 30, he had made common cause with a co-conspirator, Raed Jaser, who stood separate trial on charges that reflected those brought against Esseghaier. Both were found guilty as charged and sentenced to life imprisonment, although both have appealed both the court finding of guilt and their sentences. During his trial, Esseghaier refused to accept the services of a court-appointed lawyer in favour of representing himself. In that position, he refused to recognize the authority of the court, stating unequivocally that he would stand trial only by the law of the Koran.

His outbursts and statements of belief certainly ran counter to rational thought, yet on the other hand, he was no more than iterating the beliefs of fundamentalist Muslims. There was reason to believe that he had made al-Qaeda contacts while in Iran, and brought those convictions with him to Canada, using his student visa to both further his academic studies and to concoct plots that he felt he and his co-conspirator should launch to do violence in Canada. Among them the derailment of a passenger train, hoping for many deaths to ensue.
Accused terrorist plotters Chiheb Esseghaier and Raed Jaser examine a Toronto-area railway bridge in the company of an undercover FBI agent. Court exhibit

An undercover police officer befriended the two would-be jihadist martyrs and their plots were revealed. Since his imprisonment, evidently, Esseghaier permitted himself to be treated with anti-psychotic drugs enabling him to now fully understand as the amicus curaie, advising him in his appeal states, the 'significance' of his sentence. Lawyer Erin Dann states that her client had been suffering schizophrenic delusions causing him to be convinced that his destiny was to die and ascend to heaven.

Since jihadis all share the ambition to martyr themselves in the violent cause they espouse, believing as shaheeds they earn the privilege of ascending to Paradise as heroic warriors for Islam, to be waited upon by countless nubile virgins, it's obvious that this ambition has been interpreted for his Western audience.

Before Esseghaier was sentenced at the conclusion of the trial which detailed all the evidence against him and his co-conspirator, two psychiatric assessments were performed on him. The result of which was to confirm to Justice Michael Code that the man was fit to be sentenced, that not "a scintilla of evidence" existed from the pretrial and trial persuaded that he was unfit to stand trial. Esseghaier was resolute in his determined rejection of Canadian justice in favour of Sharia law.

He did, after all, in his planning with Raed Jaser, no more than many passages in the Koran and the Hadiths demand of the faithful. He was determined to strike a blow for Islam against a country that permitted him to study at its institutes of higher learning, that gave him opportunities to develop his academic credentials, that clearly gave honour to his scientific capabilities well beyond the thought-capacity of his co-conspirator, but Canada, according to jihad, is a 'country of war' that requires to be pacified by bringing it into the orbit of Islam, as a 'country of peace'.

This is not the reasoning of a sober, disciplined mind of Western origins, but it is reflective of how a Tunisian Islamist, a clever and educated man, might think and behave, and it is as good a rendition of Islamist taqiyya as any. Taqiyya is a technique used in Islam whereby an enemy can be 'put off'. It is a term descriptive of precautionary dissimulation or denial of religious belief and practise when facing 'persecution'. And clearly, Chiheb Esseghaier is being persecuted by the Canadian justice system simply for planning to do what Islam demands he must.

And the Canadian system of justice and those who operate within that system think with the reasoning of the Western mind, while Chiheb Esseghaier plots with the reasoning of the Muslim mind, instructed since birth and reinforced each Friday during mosque prayers how it is best to portray themselves when faced with Western intransigence in failing to adequately respect Islam. So his human rights are a concern to the exponents of Western justice, eager to render to him the courtesy of the doubt that his troubled mental state was responsible for his strange behaviour.

"Strange" only to the Western mind which cannot grasp that Islam's focus on conquest is all-encompassing and inexorable.

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