Four men, who police say are affiliated with a gang, face criminal charges after a pregnant woman was held in Gatineau and repeatedly sexually assaulted over a two-day period.
Police said the woman as sexually assaulted by two men in Ottawa on Sept. 22 after being told they were gang members. The woman was then taken against her will to Gatineau and assaulted again, police said.
She was later brought back to Ottawa and the attacks reported to police.
Police said that in the days leading up to the sexual assaults, the woman's boyfriend was beaten and forced to run errands for the men, who were occupying the couple's home. One of the gang members was seen with a handgun, police said.
Police said Mohamed Dib, 19, of Ottawa is charged with sexual assault, forcible confinement, intimidation and threatening.
Chireh Youssouf, 20, is charged with charged with sexual assault, party to a sexual assault, forcible confinement, intimidation, threats, assault and breach of undertaking, police said.
Police said two other males have also been identified and will be charged.
Seoul believes that more than 480 South Korean kidnap victims are still being held in North Korea, in addition to nearly 600 South Korean soldiers taken prisoner during the 1950-53 Korean War. Pyongyang says that any South Koreans in its country defected voluntarily, but in 1997 a North Korean spy, Kim Gwang Hyeon, admitted to kidnapping Kim Young Nam.
In 2002 North Korea admitted that it had abducted 13 Japanese citizens over the years to help to train spies in Japanese language and culture, and allowed five to return home. Pyongyang maintains that the other eight, including Megumi Yokota, are dead.
Charles Jenkins, an American soldier who deserted his Army unit in 1965 and fled to the North, was kept by the regime for 39 years and forced to make propaganda films. He married Hitomi Soga, a Japanese woman abducted when she was 19.
I drove back from yesterday's news conference at the Islamic Foundation of Toronto in the northeastern part of the city, but honestly, I could have just as easily floated home in the sea of horse manure emanating from the building.
So frequent were the bald reassurances that faith and religion had nothing — nothing, you understand — to do with the alleged homegrown terrorist plot recently busted open by Canadian police and security forces, that for a few minutes afterward, I wondered if perhaps it was a vile lie of the mainstream press or a fiction of my own demented brain that the 17 accused young men are all, well, Muslims.
But no. I have checked. They are all Muslims.
Barely two days after the nighttime raids that saw 15 of the accused arrested (the remaining two, in Kingston, conveniently were already in the joint on gun charges), the great Canadian self-delusion machine was up and running at full throttle.
Why, it's not those young men — with their three tonnes of ammonium nitrate and all the little doohickeys of the bomb-making trade — who posed the threat. No sir: They, thank you so much, are innocent until proved otherwise and probably innocent and, if convicted, it's because of the justice system.
It's those bastard vandals (probably crazed right-wing conservatives, or maybe the Jews) who yesterday morning broke windows at a west-end mosque who stand before us as the greatest danger to Canadian society.
As Toronto Police Chief Bill Blair, who came to the building to offer his assurances that Muslims and Muslim institutions will be protected, said at one point: “Hatred in any form and certainly in its expression in violence and damage to property will not be tolerated.”
Thank God: Windows everywhere in Canada's largest city are safe, especially windows in mosques. The war on windows will be won, whatever the cost.
Such is the state of ignoring the biggest, fattest elephant in the room in this country that at one point Chief Blair actually bragged — this in answer to a question from the floor — “I would remind you that there was not one single reference made by law enforcement to Muslim or Muslim community” at the big post-arrest news conference on Saturday.
Indeed, law-enforcement types there took enormous pains to say just the opposite: The arrested men are from a diverse variety of backgrounds (“They're students, they're employed, they're unemployed” one official said, which is akin to running the gamut from A to oh, C); they come from all parts of Canadian society; blah, blah, blah.
Even before I knew for sure that they're all Muslims, I suspected as much from what I saw on the tube, perhaps because I am a trained observer, or you know, because I have eyes.
The accused men are mostly young and mostly bearded in the Taliban fashion. They have first names like Mohamed, middle names like Mohamed and last names like Mohamed. Some of their female relatives at the Brampton courthouse who were there in their support wore black head-to-toe burkas (now there's a sight to gladden the Canadian female heart: homegrown burka-wearers darting about just as they do in Afghanistan), which is not a getup I have ever seen on anyone but Muslim women.
And from far outside the courthouse, if the Muslim question wasn't settled, there was the likes of Scarborough Imam Aly Hindy telling the Toronto Star that: “Because they are young people and they are Muslims, they are saying it is terrorism.”
Now look, of course it is a good thing that Chief Blair, who is a wonderful guy, made the trek out to Scarborough yesterday.
It's even good that he told local Muslims that their places of worship will get extra patrols and that if anyone wearing traditional beards or the hijab is hassled, the police will investigate and treat it seriously.
The chief is right that now, as in the aftermath of 911 (talk about property damage), that all of us have to be particularly tolerant of one another.
And he is also right that there is a distinction, though in my view it may be a distinction without a difference, between terrorism motivated purely by religious zealotry, and terrorism, as was the alleged case with these 17 mostly young men, motivated by political ideology — even if the ideology seems to have been nothing more than the ideology of rage fuelled by overseas conflicts.
And it should go without saying — but it never, ever can in this country, and must be shrieked at every turn — that this whole business is as at least as distressing to the vast majority of good, peaceable Canadian Muslims as it is to everyone else.
But what came clear at that meeting yesterday, which was an odd mix of community venting and news conference, is that many of those people who went to the microphone to ask questions, and some of those who answered them from the podium, are far more concerned about a possible anti-Muslim backlash to the arrests than they are about the allegations that a whole whack of their young people were bent on blowing something up in the city; that they are generally worked up about Canadian soldiers in Afghanistan and the Americans in Iraq, and that even as they talk about Islam being a religion of peace, they do not sound or appear particularly peaceable.
Only one question from the floor, this from a young man, really dared to depart from the convention of deploring the supposed coming anti-Muslim backlash and the idea of Muslim as victim.
He asked what the imams were doing to ensure that the sort of violent views that allegedly motivated the homegrown terrorists were not allowed to “become entrenched in our community.”
Sheikh Husain Patel answered him. “It is important we educate our young brothers,” he said.
He mentioned a series of conflicts overseas, including Iraq and Palestine, then said: “You cannot justify a legal goal by using illegal means. The politics of overseas should not be addressed in a violent manner in Canada.”
That did not ring in my ears as a renunciation of violence per se, but as a renunciation of violence in this country.
I wondered if the answer had satisfied the young man who asked the question, but I lost him in the crowd afterward.
The war on windows, though — that goes well.
OTTAWA - Canada's foreign affairs bureaucracy is proving its well known anti-Western credentials once again with the announcement that effective immediately it will be creating a special department to deal specifically with the world's Muslim community.Shouldn't that be Muslim Communities Islamic Villages Working Group Operational Unit Strategic Bureau Think Tank Charge D'Affaires?
The group, to be known as the Muslim Communities Working Group Operational Unit*, institutionalizes an informal group created in the summer of 2005 under the previous Liberal Government. According to an internal memo, the new department will "serve as a clearing house... for issues concerning relations with the Muslim world... and take the lead in providing timely, strategic advice on relations with the Muslim world, and the lead in creating a policy framework for our overall approach to this subject."
"Canadians should be deeply troubled by this announcement and what it says about the agenda of Canada’s foreign affairs bureaucracy," explained Joseph Ben-Ami, Executive Director of the Institute for Canadian Values. "Certainly, if foreign affairs functionaries were concerned about ethnic sensitivities or religious tolerance, they would have created a department to deal with Hindus and Christians, whose populations approximate that of the Muslim world. Why the favouritism?"
Particularly worrying is the involvement of Crystal Procyshen who will serve as policy and operations officer of the new unit. Ms Procyshen is well known for her radical anti-Israel views. In an article written in 1997, she wrote that "Israelis, in order to fulfil their political prophecies of a Zionist state where they would be safe from persecution, are propagating a recurring cycle of hatred towards the Palestinians as they struggle to expand the state of Israel."
Other statements written by Ms. Procyshen include allegations that:
"Since the Israelis illegally occupied the autonomous regions of the West Bank, Gaza, and the Golan Heights and East Jerusalem, they routinely torture, kill and deprive Palestinians of their rights. Under Israeli control the Palestinians have no freedom of movement, no freedom of speech or press, no jury of peers, no trials , imprisonment without just cause, no right to education, no right to an attorney, no right to property, no right to trade or profit..." and,
"If East Jerusalem comes under full Israeli control, the Palestinians cannot (sic) pray at the Temple Mount or Holy Sepulchre."
Ben-Ami called this last accusation particularly odious. "In the first place, East Jerusalem was under Israeli control since 1967, although some of that control was shared with Palestinian security as part of the disastrous Oslo Accords, so she clearly had no idea what she was writing about," he said. "But the part about Palestinians not being able to pray at Temple Mount? That's pure fiction from start to finish."
Ben-Ami says the new government must make reform of Canada's foreign affairs establishment a top priority.
"Canadians want our country to be a principled player in world affairs, not a lackey to the sort of extreme anti-Western ideology that has enslaved our foreign affairs establishment for a generation. It has been the proverbial tail that has wagged the dog for years and it's time for that to change.
"The only question is whether Minister MacKay is up to the challenge."
Ottawa — The federal Conservatives acknowledged the priorities of other political parties but signalled a strong directional shift from the previous Liberal government in a Throne Speech yesterday that referred to the United States as "our best friend and largest trading partner."I have four words for Bill Graham: you lost the election.
The address that Governor-General Michaëlle Jean delivered in the Senate contained few surprises. The government of Stephen Harper focused on its established priorities of accountability, safe streets, reduced waiting times for medical treatment and a tax cut.
"In support of building a stronger Canada, the government's agenda will be clear and focused," the speech said. "It will clean up government, provide real support to ordinary working families and strengthen our federation as well as our role in the world."
The speech, which was drafted by the Conservative communications shop and revised by Mr. Harper, was a brief, bare-bones offering. Half as long as most Throne Speeches, it stuck to its key themes without hyperbole. The Prime Minister will address Parliament today to elaborate.
The Governor-General delivered her first Throne Speech at a slow, deliberate pace after arriving to fanfare from a military band and inspecting the honour guard on Parliament Hill.
Liberal Leader Bill Graham said the government blueprint set forth yesterday did not adequately address a number of his party's concerns, including the environment, child care and aboriginal issues.
Canada has ended all relations with the new Palestinian government, Ottawa announced Wednesday.
Canada has ended any contacts with the members of the Hamas cabinet and is suspending assistance to the Palestinian Authority, Foreign Affairs Minister Peter MacKay said.
"Not a red cent to Hamas," MacKay said on CBC's Inside Politics. "This is a terrorist organization."
In prison Mr Yu was tortured and has suffered mental problems. "He didn't seem to recognise me. When I called him `brother', he did not respond," said Yu Xiyue, Yu Dongyue’s brother.The Dui Hua Foundation estimates that there are 70 dissidents like Yu Dongyue, still languishing in China's "prison work" camps because they participated in the Tiananmen Square protests. Other organisations put the estimated number of prisoners in the thousands. Why such a discrepancy in numbers?
"I talked to him, but his responses were incomprehensible. I didn't understand what he said. [. . .] He was just smiling at everyone."
(CBC) - Five Canadian warships are leaving Halifax on Monday to join the U.S. navy in training exercises that will pit them against a simulated terrorist attack.
HMCS Montreal, Ville de Québec, Summerside, Moncton and Preserver will be joined on the three-week mission by Canadian fighter jets and the country's only operational submarine, HMCS Windsor. They will work alongside three U.S. destroyers.
The Canadian military said the exercise will give the countries an opportunity to train together and take part in a scenario involving a terrorist organization.
"They will be asked to react to that scenario, and they'll put in place the combat tactics that they have been practising during this intense three-week exercise," said Lieut. Sonia Connock, a navy spokesperson. The training exercises will be in waters near Halifax, Boston and Norfolk, Va.
It will be Preserver's first mission since undergoing a $40-million retrofit in 2005. The vessel had been plagued with electrical problems. The vessels are scheduled to return on March 10.
Conservative Party leader Stephen Harper's popularity in the province, says one observer, is like Bush having better ratings in Massachusetts than in Texas.
Second, we should be honest enough to say what everyone already knows about health care: that our system is broken and can only be fixed by the introduction of a parallel private system as exists in Europe. This will, of course, cause virtually everyone on the left to scream like a detoxing junkie – let them, I say. When the Liberals hurl the “American-style�? epithet at us, we can point to France, Britain, Australia, and any of twenty other countries whose health care systems work far better than ours while offering universal coverage, often at a cost far lower than that of our system.
Imagine a series of skilled Conservative campaign commercials which fill the airwaves and point out three simple facts over and over again:I wish Yoshida would come to the USA; he could give the Republicans a bit of backbone.
1) A parallel system will virtually eliminate waiting lists.
2) The proposal isn’t for an “American-style" system, it’s for a system like they have in France, Britain, Australia, and virtually every other country in the Western World.
3) The only other nations with restrictions on private health care as extensive as ours are North Korea and Cuba.
Repeat those points and, frankly, there’s no real argument against the proposal beyond hysterical bleating. It’s, quite frankly, common sense. That’s why it’s been practically unanimously accepted all over the world – including in nations far more socialistic in Canada.
At the same time, it’s vitally necessary that the Conservatives make getting tough on crime a centerpiece of the final weeks of the campaign. Here, again, there are some simple points which ought to be repeated over and over:
1) A Conservative Government will bring in mandatory minimum sentences for violent crimes and drug crimes.
2) A Conservative Government will abolish conditional sentencing.
3) A Conservative Government will allow for consecutive rather than concurrent sentencing.Those proposals, in and of themselves, would, if properly publicized, be worth several seats.
We can’t win this thing on points. Victory will come to us only if we are brave enough to deserve it and ruthless enough to seize it. We cannot win – we will not win – if we simply hold back and wait or the Liberals to lose.
MONTREAL — Ten years after a referendum failed to break up Canada, independence advocates of the French-speaking province of Quebec are vowing to try again to win their sovereignty.I hope for failure once again for the separatists. Canada should stay one country, we don't need a bunch of mini-Canadas and frankly Quebec's story isn't very good as far as claims to nationhood go.
With support for Quebec independence climbing as high as 56% this year, according to the polling firm CROP in Montreal, the Parti Quebecois, the principal force behind the separatist movement, hopes to quickly call another referendum if the party regains power in the next provincial election, expected in 2007.
All nine candidates hoping to lead the Parti Quebecois, which has been in opposition since 2003, have declared their support for a new referendum.
Bill C-407 is not about allowing a "death with dignity". This bill legalizes euthanasia and assisted suicide for people suffering chronic physical and mental pain.The author of the website is an end-of-life palliative caregiver who sees through the death-with-dignity charade because she knows better. With thanks and cognac to papijoe at Marlowe's Shade.
Bill C-407 does not require that a person at least try effective treatments for their chronic physical or mental pain. It states that a person qualifies for euthanasia even if they have refused to try effect treatments.
Bill C-407 is not about "death with dignity" for competent people. This bill legalizes euthanasia and assisted suicide for people who "appear to be lucid". What does that mean?
Bill C-407 is not about "physician aid-in-dying". This bill allows anyone to euthanize or assist the suicide of anyone,
so long as they are "assisted by a medical practitioner", and act in the way indicated by the person who asks to die.
Bill C-407 allows a person to kill another person, if that person asks to die. Once society allows one person to kill another it becomes impossible to protect persons who are otherwise viewed as a burden on society.
Although the Helgerson report is history, a fresh problem is brewing for the CIA. There is an agency-wide counterintelligence focus on a suspected Chinese penetration. The Chinese penetration is not believed to rise to the Richard Ames level, according to those familiar with the matter, but it comes at a bad time for a wounded agency struggling to regain its footing.
HALIFAX (CP) - The disappearance of 17 cruise ship passengers, who slipped into Canada after duping customs officials, highlights a serious weakness in the country's highly touted ports security program, analysts say.I wonder how much involvement the Communist regime has in these innovative exploits. The web of Chinese business-Communist party-Triad gangs is much more intimately woven together than we probably imagine.
David Harris, a former CSIS strategic planner, warns that the breach in security is alarming enough that Ottawa should consider putting more money into beefing up resources at the country's major marine gateways. "This does seem to be a significant failure," said Harris, of Insignis Strategic Research Inc. in Ottawa.
"One of the ways we would be infiltrated by terrorists, or other enemy groups, would be by undocumented entry at ports, so one won't sleep very comfortably knowing that his kind of thing is possible."
Seventeen Chinese nationals presented fraudulent Korean passports to officials from the Canada Border Services Agency and managed to leave their cruise ship in Halifax on Sept. 9 by either claiming they were seasick or saying they wanted to temporarily get off.
They then boarded a train to Toronto and haven't been heard from since.
A spokeswoman with the agency said the matter is under investigation and will focus partly on how agents failed to identify more than a dozen phoney documents.
"The work is being done through our intelligence in reviewing all those procedures," Jennifer Morrison said in Halifax, adding that agents have special training to detect forged identity papers.
The incident was followed by the arrival of another two ships carrying groups suspected of attempting to sneak into Canada with falsified passports.
Police suspect that a criminal smuggling ring has set its sights on the Atlantic Coast as a new entry point for illegal immigrants.
Four Chinese nationals posing as Korean passengers were detained in St. John's, N.L., earlier this week after trying to get off the Star Princess with illegal passports. One man was charged with aiding and abetting illegal immigration and entering Canada illegally.
Two weeks earlier, four Chinese nationals with Korean passports were arrested while attempting to leave the cruise ship Constellation in Halifax. One man is facing charges of aiding and abetting illegal entry into Canada.
RCMP Cpl. Andy Kerr, who is investigating the Halifax incidents, said he's never seen cruise ships used before as a means of entering the country illegally and that this could be a new phenomenon similar to smuggling rings seen on the West Coast.
"Certainly it's a concern, especially when there are three incidents entering illegally," said Kerr, of the RCMP's Atlantic region immigration and passport section.
Tokin' ApologyOh. Well, that's okay then. Thanks for apologizing, although it's pretty strange that you had to have your Jewish friends inform you that YOU STUPID FREAKING IDIOT!
Now that he is out of jail, British Columbia marijuana activist Marc Emery has issued a public apology to Canadian Justice Minister Irwin Cotler for calling him a "Nazi-Jew."
Emery also had compared Canada's treatment of marijuana smokers to the Nazi persecution of Jews and other minorities.
But this week he explained that the harsh conditions he faced while in jail had made him resentful and unkind. "I feel ashamed when my Jewish friends tell me they are ill-at-ease by my using the terms Nazi or Holocaust when referring to this issue or incident," Emery wrote Wednesday on his Cannabis Culture Web site. He went on to praise Cotler's "magnificent body of accomplishments" and added, "He in no way deserves to have this kind of remark hurled at him in the media.
The 47-year-old "Prince of Pot," faces possible extradition to the United States for selling marijuana seeds to Americans.