True North Initiative: News Scan 07 10 17

TOP STORIES

Trudeau should be charged with treason: Morris

Layne Morris admits the “sneakiness” of the Canadian government to shield Omar Khadr from having his sweet cash settlement being exposed to an American court order felt like another terror attack. “Like a punch in the face,” Morris said. “We didn’t understand the deal but we didn’t think that the government would do a behind-the-scenes move like that.” (Toronto Sun) (PJ Media)

PM defends $10.5M payout, apology to convicted terrorist Omar Khadr

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says an apology and reported $10.5 million compensation payment to former Guantanamo Bay inmate Omar Khadr was a basic matter of following Canada’s Charter of Rights and Freedoms. Trudeau answered a question about the settlement to the convicted terrorist on Saturday at the closing press conference following the G20 leaders’ summit in Hamburg, Germany. (Canoe) (Daily Caller) (Globe and Mail)

While Khadr receives $10.5 million, Canadian 9/11 widow says she was hounded by Ottawa

Canada is reacting to the Trudeau government’s quick delivery of $10.5 million in what is defined as financial compensation for Omar Khadr‘s time in U.S. captivity. Canadians who object to Ottawa’s speedy cash-out for Khadr are many nationwide. The hurried turning over of the $10.5 million clearly complicates any legal attempt to access the funds by the widow of the U.S. Army medic killed by a grenade thrown by Khadr in the 2002 Afghanistan firefight between U.S. soldiers and insurgents, and Army special forces Sgt. Layne Morris who lost an eye. (Global)

How this al Qaeda militant turned into a ‘victim’ — then a millionaire

In the ruins of a dusty al Qaeda compound in Ayub Kheil, a remote village in Afghanistan, 15-year-old Canadian-born Omar Khadr secured his position behind a crumbling, bullet-riddled wall and threw the Russian grenade that would change his life forever. It landed him a decade behind bars in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba — as the detention center’s young­est prisoner — where he claimed he was tortured. It also put him at the front and center of protracted legal battles in two countries. (NY Post)

Federal Conservative Leader Scheer vows to put Liberal feet to fire over Khadr payout

Andrew Scheer says the Conservative Opposition will force a debate in the House of Commons on the Liberal government’s payout to former Guantanamo Bay inmate Omar Khadr. Ottawa formally apologized to Khadr this week and paid him to settle a longstanding lawsuit — reportedly to the tune of $10.5 million — prompting outrage among federal Conservatives and their new leader. (Calgary Sun)

Former PM Stephen Harper blasts Liberals for ‘secret deal’ with Omar Khadr

Former prime minister Stephen Harper says the Trudeau government was wrong to make a “secret deal” with Omar Khadr and then try to blame his government for it. “The government today attempted to lay blame elsewhere for their decision to conclude a secret deal with Omar Khadr. The decision to enter into this deal is theirs, and theirs alone, and it is simply wrong. Canadians deserve better than this,” he said on his Facebook page. (National Post)

Interview with Omar Khadr about his settlement with the federal government

The federal government has apologized to former Guantanamo Bay inmate Omar Khadr and, sources say, paid him $10.5 million to settle his long-standing lawsuit over the violations of his charter rights. Canadian Press reporter Colin Perkel talked to Khadr about the settlement and the widespread anger it has engendered: (Canadian Press)

Who was Sgt. Christopher Speer, the soldier who died in a firefight with Omar Khadr?

During an attack on an al-Qaida hideout in the midst of the war in Afghanistan, Sgt. Christopher Speer walked out into a minefield. Two Afghan children were lying wounded among the landmines. Speer applied a tourniquet to one, and flagged down a military truck to take the children to a field hospital. (National Post)

Iraqi PM lauds forces for 'victory' over ISIS in Mosul

Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi arrived in Mosul on Sunday and congratulated the armed forces for their "victory" over the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) after nearly nine months of urban warfare, bringing an end to jihadist rule in the city. ISIS's defeat in Mosul three years after taking the city is a major blow for the hardline Sunni Islamist group, which is also losing ground in its operational base in the Syrian city of Raqqa, where it has planned global attacks. (CBC) (BBC)

 

OTHER STORIES (Domestic and International)

Trudeau keen to help Khadr, not him: Afghan refugee

The tale of two 30-year-olds who were on the battlefield of Afghanistan has two very different results. One hit the jackpot. The other, the skids. Omar Khadr was born in Canada and chose to join his father and friend to fight against the Canadians and their allies. Alam Khan was born in Afghanistan and chose to work with the Canadians as an interpreter. (Toronto Sun)

Debate rages over $10.5M Khadr deal

People are really peeved about the blood money payout to Omar Khadr. In my quarter century at the Toronto Sun, I can’t recall seeing so much anger from all across Canada. It is directed at the Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and his government’s decision to settle with Khadr for $10.5-million and apologize for not properly honouring his Charter Rights while imprisoned at Guantánamo Bay. Here is a sampling of comments from Sun readers to our coverage of the apology and secret cash payment that keeps money away from Khadr’s grenade victims. (Toronto Sun)

If U.S. Army medics had not saved Omar Khadr’s life...

Let us pause for a minute to think of Tabitha Speer. She asked for none of this. She was thrust into an unwelcomed spotlight when a young al-Qaeda combatant lobbed a grenade from a bombed-out compound in Afghanistan in July of 2002 and inflicted a mortal head wound on her husband, an Army medic and sergeant, and the father of their two young children. (Toronto Sun)

Canadian citizen has Nexus card revoked in wake of partial travel ban, questions U.S. procedures

In the wake of U.S. President Donald Trump's partial travel ban, a Toronto man has had his Nexus card suddenly revoked and is calling on the Canadian government to help him get answers.  The man says he had just arrived back from a trip to Saudi Arabia, where he was born, on June 30. Four days later, he received an email from U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) saying there had been a change to the status of his account. (CBC)

'It was the happiest moment': Asylum seekers who took risky Central American corridor cross into Canada

Their journeys spanned 400 days, involved crossing 15 borders on three continents and cost them nearly $40,000. But earlier this month, as Canadians celebrated the 150th anniversary of Confederation, the two Somali asylum seekers who embarked on those risky journeys reached their final goal. Their stories are emblematic of new lengths some migrants fleeing violent hot spots are willing to take to reach Canada — wooed by the ruling Liberal government's refugee rhetoric and drawn to a migration route through Central America that treats the United States as a country of transit rather than a destination. (CBC)

Legal aid cuts put refugees claimants, immigrants at risk, experts say

Effective Aug. 1, the Legal Services Society of B.C. will not accept applications for immigration and refugee cases because government funding has not kept pace with the dramatic increase in refugee claims. The society’s executive director, Mark Benton, said unless the society receives an additional $1 million in federal funding, vulnerable individuals who have already experienced trauma will be forced to represent themselves during complicated hearings in front of the Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada. (Times Colonist)

Canada embraced them as they fled the Vietnam War. Now, they're saying thanks

Kien Le was only 12 years old when he became stateless. The son of a Vietnamese naval officer who grew up in what was then Saigon, Le says he and his family led a peaceful existence until the war, waged in far-off jungles and known only to Le by the images on his television , abruptly entered the family's lives. (CBC)

Ottawa hopes to pick new RCMP commissioner from within ranks

Ottawa is primarily looking within the RCMP to appoint its next commissioner, instead of focusing on an outsider, senior officials in the government and RCMP say. Selecting an external candidate would widely be seen as bringing further scrutiny to the beleaguered force. Amid the ongoing struggles over the much-publicized cases of sexual and workplace harassment, many Mounties have been wondering whether the government will feel a need to go beyond the force to find a new leader. (Globe and Mail)

B.C. wildfires force province-wide state of emergency

A province-wide state of emergency has been declared in British Columbia after dozens of new wildfires destroyed buildings and forced thousands of people from their homes More than 1,800 firefighters were fighting around 200 fires on Saturday, many of which are considered to be out of control. Another 260 firefighters were coming to help from across Canada. Official province-wide evacuee numbers have not been released; however an estimated 6,000 people had been forced from their homes as of Saturday afternoon, according to the Cariboo Regional District. (CTV)

Sweden is the best country in the world to be an immigrant, U.S. study says (Canada 2nd)

A new ranking of the best countries to be an immigrant has placed Sweden in the top spot, closely followed by Canada, Switzerland, Australia and Germany. The United States, a country which was largely founded through mass immigration, came in seventh. U.S. News and World Report, which compiled the ranking, said it looked at measures such as economic stability, income equality and job markets to create its list, using a special survey of the opinions of more than 21,000 business leaders and other elites, as well as members of the public. (Washington Post)

Seven Times American Elites Said Immigrants Are Better Than Their Own People

But Americans are not the only people whose leaders simply prefer foreigners. Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau took time when celebrating Canada’s 150th anniversary on July 1 to claim that immigrants to Canada were more authentically Canadian than Canadians by birth. (Breitbart)

Turnbull gets his way at G20 on cyber terrorism

Malcolm Turnbull had several reasons to be restless on his flight to Hamburg last Wednesday. Who knew what would happen when Donald Trump stepped into the room for his first appearance at a G20 summit? And what could be done about China’s apparent ­reluctance to rein in its belligerent ally North Korea? (The Australian)

Peace offering from Maduro comes amid plans to rewrite Venezuela's constitution

The transfer of Venezuela's most prominent political prisoner from a military stockade to house arrest was widely viewed as a peace offering by President Nicolas Maduro to opponents who have led months of street protests against his beleaguered government. In a speech Saturday, the day opposition leader Leopoldo Lopez was sent home after three years behind bars, Maduro said: "God willing, this decision will be understood" as a gesture of peace and reconciliation. (CBC)

Chilling picture shows female Isil fighter holding child moments before detonating suicide vest

An Iraqi TV station captured the moment before a suspected female Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (Isil) suicide bomber blew herself - and the baby - up near Iraqi troops. She had apparently tried to detonate an explosives vest hidden under her hijab as she passed the soldiers, but it failed to go off until she had walked some distance away, a cameraman for al-Mawsleya TV said. (Telegraph)

 

EDITORIAL AND OPINION PIECES

Candice Malcolm: Trudeau treating Khadr with kid gloves

Make no mistake, the decision to give convicted terrorist Omar Khadr $10.5 million and an official apology was a political decision made by the Trudeau government. While Trudeau officials insist this payout was the result of a case that went to the Supreme Court and ruled in favour of Khadr, nothing in that ruling said Khadr was entitled to cash. (Toronto Sun)

Brian Lilley: SpeerKids.com: Help us raise $1 million for Omar Khadr's victims

By now you’ve heard about the outrageous settlement that Justin Trudeau and his Liberal government gave to confessed terrorist Omar Khadr: An apology and $10.5 million. Meanwhile, the real victims, the Speer family, get nothing. That's why we are launching a crowdfunding campaign to raise $1 million for the Speer children, at SpeerKids.com (Rebel)

John Ivison: Khadr apology likely to unite Canadians, but not how Liberals hoped

The Omar Khadr case has left Canadians deeply divided, said public safety minister Ralph Goodale as he made a statement of apology Friday to the former child soldier. He might have had a point in 2015, after Khadr’s release from prison — one Angus Reid Institute poll at the time said 55 per cent of Canadians agreed Khadr “remains a potential radicalized threat,” while 52 per cent agreed he had “served his time.” (National Post)

Rex Murphy: Trudeau skips the theme socks for his scheming Khadr apology

How and when Canadians were let in on the Trudeau government’s lavish settlement and accompanying official apology to Omar Khadr are its most curious and telling elements. No cabinet minister, and certainly not Justin Trudeau, stepped before a bank of microphones and cameras to bring the good news to Canadians before it was a done deal. How unlike Trudeau to put a blanket over his good deeds — more usually he orders up another pair of billboard socks to mark such occasions. No socks for Khadr. (National Post)

David T. Jones: Canada’s sympathy for Khadr is a disgrace

Canadians are being treated to the latest episode in the long-running Omar Khadr sob story. Now, he’s getting $10.5 million and a grovelling apology from the Canadian government. The outraged widow of the U.S. medic killed by Khadr is dissed in Canadian media with story titles such as, “Widow goes after money Canada will give ex-Gitmo prisoner” (doubtless a greedy money grubber), and comments such as Khadr is only “alleged to have killed” his victim as a “child soldier” when he confessed to the killing. (Toronto Sun)

Lorrie Goldstein: Liberals two-faced on Khadr

The Omar Khadr case is a textbook example of how the federal Liberals, Canada’s self-described natural governing party, operate. They do it by hypocritically changing their spots – if you don’t like Liberal principles, hang around for a few minutes, because they’ll have new ones – while blaming controversies on the Conservatives, for which Liberals were responsible. A brief tour through the highlights of Liberal interactions with Khadr over the years illustrates the point. (Toronto Sun)

Michelle Mandel: If Khadr wants public trust, we need an apology

What a shameful day to be a Canadian. It’s a done deal, shoved down our throats. The Trudeau Liberals, slinking about in the shadows, negotiated a shocking $10.5-million payout to convicted terrorist Omar Khadr, delivered it in secret, and then ensured the prime minister was as far away as possible when they finally made the announcement, which had been leaked days before. (Toronto Sun)

Holly Nicholas: Syrian refugees struggling in Canada while Trudeau postures on world stage

Before he was voted out of office, former Prime Minister Stephen Harper said the solution to the Syrian refugee crisis wasn’t in Canada’s refugee and immigration policy but rather, in the Middle East. It turns out, he was right.  (Rebel)

Douglas Todd: Buying fake jobs to immigrate

Canadian employers are creating fake jobs so would-be immigrants can quickly get citizenship. Immigration “consultants” often arrange the illicit deals, which frequently result in Canadian business owners being paid to fabricate non-existent jobs. Other times, the migrants perform actual work, while themselves handing cash to the employer under the table to top up their own salary. (Vancouver Sun)

 

REPORTS, COMMITTEE HEARINGS, LEGISLATIVE UPDATES

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