Returning ISIS fighters deserve to be locked up, not helped


(This column originally appeared in The Toronto Sun)

By: Candice Malcolm

Last week, Iraqi President Haider al-Abadi declared victory over ISIS, saying that Iraq was now “completely liberated” from the jihadist army that has wreaked havoc throughout the region for the past three years. 

The Islamic State may be decimated in Iraq and Syria, but that doesn’t mean its grisly campaign is over. In fact, now that its territory has been recaptured by Iraqi forces and the U.S.-led coalition, the ISIS threat is shifting towards the West. 

Tens of thousands of ISIS militants are making their way into the West — mostly to Europe, but hundreds are also back in North America. And leaders across the West are struggling with what to do with these returned jihadists. 

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s plan made international headlines, for all the wrong reasons.

Trudeau said he wants to welcome these returned jihadists and even try to help them, through taxpayer-funded social programs aimed to “de-radicalize” and “reintegrate” these terrorists into our society. 

“We recognize the return of even one individual may have serious national security implications,” said Trudeau last month, noting that “we are going to monitor them.”

“We are also there to help them to let go of that terrorist ideology,” he said.

We’re going to help them? Why on earth would Canadian taxpayers seek to help members of a jihadist army that committed genocide, burned Christians alive, beheaded American journalists and aid workers, sold women into sex slavery and threw gay men off rooftops? 

Trudeau’s naive plan for “reintegration” borders on the absurdity. The assumption that an avowed jihadist — committed to the most regressive and fundamentalist interpretation of Islam — would somehow be willing to “let go of that terrorist ideology” shows how little Trudeau understands ISIS jihadists. 

These aren’t recovering alcoholics or teenagers on the verge of online radicalization. They aren’t people who have served their time, taken responsibility for their actions and are ready to start anew. 

These are hardened jihadist terrorists who travelled across the world to join the most repulsive terrorist army the world has ever known. 

They watched the Islamic State’s propaganda videos, promoting an Islamist war of civilizations, and purposely chose to join Canada’s enemy. 

They signed up to be part of a fanatical cult. They watched the news and saw how the Islamic State promoted seventh-century customs and morality, replete with beheadings, torture, sex slavery, and targeted genocide against Christians and Yazidis, and were compelled to hop on a plane and illegally cross into Syria and Iraq. 

They are traitors who defected to our enemy, and now that that enemy has lost, they want to come crawling back to Canada. 

Let’s be clear: the only reason these maniacs are back in Canada is because the U.S.-led military coalition stepped in to destroy their little caliphate and liberate the territory they stole. In other words, they’re back because they lost, not because they’ve changed. 

Despite Trudeau’s hug-a-terrorist mentality, Canadians should not help these terrorist thugs. 

ISIS jihadists do not deserve our help, just as al-Qaida jihadists do not deserve official apologies or million-dollar settlements from the Trudeau government.  And they certainly do not deserve the privilege of being granted Canadian citizenship. 

Regardless of whether these ISIS...(READ MORE)