True North Initiative News Scan 01 04 2018


PMO should've known about Boyle, says former top cop

The Prime Minister’s Office should have known about police investigations into Joshua Boyle before agreeing to meet with him, says one of Ottawa’s former top cops. “No matter who was investigating him, they would have known,” Conservative Sen. Vern White told the Sun. White was chief of Ottawa Police Service from 2007 to 2012 and an assistant RCMP commissioner before that. (Toronto Sun)

Federal government hired NGO to help former hostage Joshua Boyle’s family readjust

The federal government hired an international non-profit group, which specializes in helping hostages and their relatives, to provide support to Joshua Boyle, Caitlan Coleman and their three children after their release from five years in captivity by Taliban-linked militants. Global Affairs Canada's decision to work with the organization, known as Hostage US, was one of several forms of rare postcaptivity government assistance provided to the family in recent weeks, according to two sources with knowledge of the case. The contract with Hostage US includes referrals for counselling, financial advice and lawyers. (Globe and Mail)

Boyle's Parliament Hill meeting raises questions about who meets the PM

A meeting between the prime minister and former hostage Joshua Boyle's family in Justin Trudeau's Parliament Hill office is raising questions about who gets to meet with Canada's head of government and why. On New Year's Day, less than two weeks after Boyle, his wife and three children met with Trudeau, Boyle was arrested and charged with more than a dozen criminal offences, including sexual assault, assault, administering a noxious substance, unlawful confinement and uttering threats. (CBC)

Trudeau's office not saying what it knew about Joshua Boyle before granting private meeting

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s office won’t say if it was aware of any criminal investigation into former hostage Joshua Boyle before Trudeau held a private gathering with the family shortly before Christmas. The meeting, which appears to have been in Trudeau’s Centre Block office, took place just two weeks before police laid 15 charges against Boyle, including eight counts of assault, two counts of sexual assault, two counts of forcible confinement, and one count each of misleading police, uttering death threats and administering someone a noxious substance. (National Post)

Joshua Boyle, former Canadian hostage, appears in court on 15 criminal charges

Joshua Boyle, the Canadian who was held captive in Afghanistan for five years with his wife, made a brief court appearance via video link Wednesday morning in Ottawa on more than a dozen criminal charges. The 34-year-old could be seen in court wearing an orange shirt at the Ottawa-Carleton Detention Centre, where he is being held after he was arrested in Ottawa on New Year's Day. (CBC)

Iran protests: General declares 'sedition' defeated

The head of Iran's Revolutionary Guards has declared the defeat of the "sedition" in the country, referring to a wave of anti-government protests. Maj Gen Mohammad Ali Jafari made the announcement as tens of thousands of people attended pro-government rallies called to counter the unrest. (BBC)

B.C. Iranian-Canadians to hold a rally Saturday following deadly protests

From the safety of her Burnaby home, Golsa Golestaneh had watched helplessly as protests and violent clashes roiled across Iran, leaving at least 21 people dead and hundreds jailed. Now she is taking a stand, organizing a rally outside the Vancouver Art Gallery on Saturday to support the tens of thousands of protesters who have taken to the streets in the largest demonstration in Iran since the 2009 election. (Vancouver Sun)


OTHER STORIES (Domestic and International)


Federal government welcomes reopening of North Korean hotline ahead of Vancouver summit

The reopening of a crossborder hotline between North and South Korea, ahead of a crisis summit in two weeks, could aid Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland's efforts to find a diplomatic solution to avoid nuclear war, her office says. Ms. Freeland and U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson will hold a special summit in Vancouver on the North Korean threat on Jan.16 involving South Korea, Japan, India, Britain, France and other countries who fought in the Korean War of 1950-53. (Globe and Mail)

North Korean missiles will 'certainly' fly over Canada, a Japanese expert says

The Winter Olympics in South Korea may spark a dialogue with North Korea, but dictator Kim Jong Un has shown no sign of ending his quest for nuclear weapons, and the hermit kingdom is not ready for a diplomatic solution, Japanese experts say. In the last two years, the rogue dictatorship has significantly ramped up its nuclear and ballistic missile program. While South Korea and Japan have been under immediate threat for decades, recent tests have put North America’s west coast within range, and one expert expects missiles will “certainly” fly over Canada. (National Post)

Special forces commander weighs recommendations on future of Iraq mission

A captured ISIS battle flag hangs in a glass case on the wall outside the Ottawa office of the commander of Canada's special forces. A hard-earned prize from a misunderstood war. Losing "the colours" is a humiliation for any military unit, a sign the battle, and maybe even the war, has been lost. (CBC)

Sen. Lynn Beyak publishes ‘outright racist’ comments about Indigenous people on her Senate website

Conservative Sen. Lynn Beyak, who faced a string of controversies in 2017 for defending residential schools, has published more than 100 “letters of support” on her individual Senate website, with dozens  containing language that First Nations advocates call racist or offensive. (Global)

Tim Hortons heirs cut paid breaks and worker benefits after minimum wage hike, employees say

Employees at an Ontario Tim Hortons owned by the children of the chain's founders say they have been told to sign a document acknowledging they are losing paid breaks, paid benefits, and other incentives as a result of the province's minimum wage hike. (CBC)

Teen activist Autumn Peltier who scolded Trudeau to address UN

At just 13 years old, Autumn Peltier has become an internationally known advocate for water protection, especially for Canada's indigenous people. What's next? The United Nations. A year ago, Autumn found herself face-to-face with Justin Trudeau at the Assembly of First Nations' annual winter meeting. She had been chosen to present the Canadian prime minister with a ceremonial copper water bowl to symbolise his responsibility to protect the country's water. (BBC)

Will Canada provide safe haven to the Indian techies ‘Trumped’ by H-1B visa?

An estimated 500,000 to 750,000 Indian H1B visa holders could be sent home if the administration decides to go ahead with the proposal that aims at preventing the extension of H1B visas, predominantly used by Indian software professionals, as part of president Donald Trump’s “Buy American, Hire American” initiative. (Financial Express)

Trump slams Bannon, says ex-aide has 'lost his mind'

US President Donald Trump unleashed a spectacular denunciation of one of his closest political allies Wednesday, describing former White House chief strategist Steve Bannon as insane and irrelevant. (Yahoo)

When a North Korean Missile Accidentally Hit a North Korean City

What happens when a North Korean ballistic missile test fails in flight and explodes in a populated area? On April 28, 2017, North Korea launched a single Hwasong-12/KN17 intermediate-range ballistic missile (IRBM) from Pukchang Airfield in South Pyongan Province (the Korean People’s Army’s Air and Anti-Air Force Unit 447 in Ryongak-dong, Sunchon City, to be more precise). That missile failed shortly after launch and crashed in the Chongsin-dong, in North Korean city of Tokchon, causing considerable damage to a complex of industrial or agricultural buildings. (Diplomat)

Chinese President Xi Jinping orders army to prepare for WAR in chilling footage

In the clip, filmed in Central Theatre Command on Wednesday, more than 7,000 Chinese servicemen await Xi's New Year orders. As the camera pans through the crowd, it gives an insight into how regimented the world’s largest army is. Speaking in front of thousands of troops and over 300 perfectly organised military vehicles, Xi – the Communist Party's General Secretary – ordered his forces to prepare for the event of war. (Daily Star)

New York police ‘hunting for masked ISIS supporters who posed in the Big Apple with terror group’s logos’

COPS are hunting alleged Islamic state supporters who took selfies on the streets of New York alongside ISIS logos. Among the chilling images is a recruit holding a phone bearing the terror group's flag in the shadow of the rebuilt World Trade Center. (

Turkish child marriage religious document sparks anger

Turkey's main opposition party has called for a parliamentary inquiry after the directorate of religious affairs said that, under Islamic law, girls as young as nine could marry. The comments by the Diyanet prompted an outpouring of anger on social media from Turkish women's groups. (BBC)



Candice Malcolm: 'Deprogram' radical Islamists. How?

In the final weeks of 2017, Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi declared victory over ISIS, saying his country was “completely liberated” from the Islamist terrorist army. The U.S.-led coalition decimated the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria, stopping its grisly campaign and regaining territory previously captured by ISIS militants. Many ISIS fighters were killed on the battlefield, but others managed to flee, some into rural sanctuaries, others to neighboring terrorist havens and still others by infiltrating the West. Tens of thousands of ISIS militants are now in Europe, some using European passports, others taking advantage of the chaos of open borders and mass migration. (Toronto Sun)

Ezra Levant: 8 questions about Joshua Boyle — for the Prime Minister, and the Media Party

Two weeks ago we told you about Joshua Boyle, the man who took his pregnant wife to Afghanistan. I suspect Boyle was going there to join the Taliban. (He’s obsessed with Muslim terrorists: He used to be married to Omar Khadr’s sister.) Instead, Boyle was kept as an infidel hostage for years — and had more kids during captivity. He finally was rescued, at who knows what cost. (Rebel)

Mark Bonokoski: The curious case of Joshua Boyle and Justin Trudeau

The majority of mainstream media seemed intent upon bending over backwards to initially avoid mentioning Justin Trudeau in the same story in which Afghanistan detainee Joshua Boyle was arrested and jailed in Ottawa over the New Year’s on 15 serious criminal changes. What were they possibly thinking? That it was up to them to spare the prime minister another embarrassment? (Toronto Sun)

Lorrie Goldstein: Trudeau's carbon scheme already a $16 billion failure

Ottawa and the provinces will rake in more than $16 billion from carbon pricing between 2018 and 2020, while failing to achieve the Trudeau government’s 2020 greenhouse gas reduction target. My $16 billion estimate — the bulk of which will be paid by Canadians in higher taxes and prices for most goods and services — is a conservative one. (Toronto Sun)

Toronto Sun: Trudeau's Boyle meeting showed lousy judgment

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s Dec. 19 meeting with returned captive Joshua Boyle and his family was questionable when first revealed last month. Boyle’s past associations, pronouncements and his stated reasons for taking his pregnant wife to a Taliban-controlled war zone in Afghanistan – on a backpacking trip – should have raised concern. (Toronto Sun)

Christie Blatchford: Charges or no, it was odd for Trudeau to meet with Boyle family

As Joshua Boyle, thank God, must be presumed innocent, so may Justin Trudeau be presumed to be merely stupid. Continuing the Liberal tradition of looking kindly upon the highly sketchy, Trudeau met Boyle and family in his office on Dec. 18. Officials in the PMO only confirmed the meeting after Boyle tweeted pictures of his young children frolicking in Trudeau’s office and the PM sitting with the youngest, baby Ma’idah Grace, on his lap. (National Post)

Chris Selley: Photos bring Trudeau's seriousness into question and the backlash could be legendary

The supposed geniuses surrounding Prime Minister Justin Trudeau are capable of some very strange decisions. Arranging a meeting with Joshua Boyle and his family after their release from Taliban captivity, and agreeing to the Boyles photographing the smiling encounter — Joshua later tweeted out some snaps — is certainly one of them. (National Post)

Terry Glavin: Iranians have the right to revolution

As the New Year dawned and the downtrodden people of Iran were erupting in raucous exuberance from the streets of Qom and Mashhad and Tehran and Kermanshah like the first flowers of spring, we’re all agreed, then. The clear consensus is that the people of Iran have every right to free speech, and the right to protest peacefully. Everyone agrees that Iranians are perfectly entitled to assemble in manageable gatherings to complain about the unconscionable price of eggs, butter and flour. (National Post)

Joe Oliver: Hurrah Canada, a balanced budget is coming … in 27 years

A Globe and Mail headline last month trumpeted the good news: “Deficit on track for elimination by 2045, a decade earlier than last year’s projection.” You would have thought that the government had accomplished something quite remarkable, that our fiscal challenges are well in hand and that doomsayers are conjuring up a problem out of whole cloth. (Financial Post)

Mark Dubowitz: Iran’s Theocracy Is on the Brink

Iran has a peculiar habit of surprising Americans. It has done so again with the protests engulfing its major cities. The demonstrations began over economic grievances and quickly transformed into a rejection of theocracy. (WSJ)



  • N/A