True North Initiative News Scan 02 05 18


Monsef passport questions resurface following trip to Davos

Status of Women Minister Maryam Monsef may have travelled to Switzerland the other week using a passport with false information, the Toronto Sun has learned. In late November 2017, news broke that Monsef still hadn’t resolved the issues with her citizenship and had yet to receive a new and updated passport. At the time, Monsef’s office did not respond to questions from the Sun about whether the minister had travelled outside of Canada, and, if so, what passport she used. (Toronto Sun)

At least two Canadian women are among 800 foreign ‘ISIS families’ being held in legal limbo by Kurdish forces

At least two Canadian women and their children are among hundreds of “Daeshis” — or foreign ISIS families — held by Kurdish forces in temporary camps in northern Syria. A 22-year-old Montreal woman, whom Torstar previously reported had escaped the terrorist group and surrendered to Kurdish forces, is among the teeming camp population, according to her mother and Canadian officials. (Metro)

Canadian Public Broadcaster Claims Quebec Public Sector Employees ‘Too White’

According to an investigation by the French language version of the publicly-funded Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC), the public sector workforce of the province of Quebec is “too white”. The investigation claims that white Canadians are overrepresented in the public sector workforce in comparison to their overall population in Quebec. (Breitbart)

Summer jobs program deadline extended as religious backlash grows

The Liberal government is extending the deadline for applications for the Canada Summer Jobs program by one week, but will not remove a controversial clause requiring applicants to sign an attestation on abortion and LGBT rights. This week a group of religious leaders called the attestation form “fascist” and “pure discrimination,” but Prime Minister Justin Trudeau staunchly defended it. (Brinkwire)

Rescued Yazidi boy finally meets with Trudeau: ‘It was not the meeting we were looking for’

A Yazidi boy who was held captive for three years by Iraqi militants got his wish to meet with Justin Trudeau, simply by showing up to the prime minister’s town hall meeting in Winnipeg. Thirteen-year-old Emad Mishko Tamo made a video appeal to Trudeau that was posted to social media by the Yazidi Association of Manitoba last month. But a spokesperson for the group says they never heard back from Trudeau, and decided to try to see him at the forum at the University of Manitoba on Wednesday. (Toronto Star) (CTV)

Half of Iranians in published report say ‘no’ to compulsory veils

The office of Iran’s president Sunday charged into one of the most contentious debates over the character of the Islamic Republic, suddenly releasing a 3-year-old report showing nearly half of Iranians wanted an end to the requirement that women cover their heads in public. The report’s release comes as dozens of women in recent weeks have protested in public against being forced to wear the veil, a symbol of Iran’s revolution as much as it is deemed a religious requirement. (Toronto Star)

Nearly 5,000 people were arrested during Iran's bloody month of protests

Iran has arrested nearly 5,000 people during recent protests, according to an Iranian member of Parliament. Alireza Rahimi posted on messaging service Telegram last week that local authorities arrested thousands of demonstrators in January, reports Associated Press. (Business Insider)

Iran Human Rights Monitor, Monthly Report – January 2018

The most noticeable development in January was the regime’s crackdown on Iran protests which started from Mashhad, the second largest city of Iran in the North East. The people took to the streets protesting against skyrocketing prices while the general public’s purchasing power is next to nothing. (

Syrian activists say civilians hit by chlorine gas attack

Syrian activists say civilians have suffered chlorine gas poisoning during an attack on the rebel-held town of Saraqeb in Idlib province. The Syrian Civil Defence search-and-rescue group said Sunday night that three of its rescuers and six others were injured by chlorine gas in Saraqeb, a rebel-held town less than 16 kilometres (10 miles) from the front line with government forces. The Syrian American Medical Society says its hospitals in the area treated 11 patients for chlorine gas poisoning. (CTV)

Scheer-led Conservatives gaining voter momentum: Poll

The federal Conservatives are gaining voter momentum being led by Andrew Scheer, according to a new poll by Forum Research. In a random sampling among 1,408 Canadian voters, Conservative support has risen significantly and now four in 10 – or 43% — say they would support Scheer’s party if an election were held today, up four points since December. On the flipside, about 38% would support Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s Liberals, the poll suggests. (Toronto Sun)


OTHER STORIES (Domestic and International)

Critics of Kinder Morgan pipeline shout down Trudeau at B.C. town hall

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau spoke over jeers of "shame" Friday at a rowdy town hall meeting in Nanaimo, B.C., where he spent a large part of the two-hour gathering defending his government's decision to support the expansion of the Trans Mountain pipeline through the province. Trudeau said the pipeline is a key component of the federal government's approach to cutting greenhouse gas emissions, which means Ottawa had to get a national agreement on carbon pricing that will allow Canada to meet its international commitments on climate change. (CTV)

‘Sikh Extremists In Canada, The UK And Italy Are Working With ISI Or Independently’

On returning as Punjab chief minister last year, Captain Amarinder Singh found the state reeling under a drug problem and  att­empts to revive Khalistani ext­r­e­mism. In this interview with Ushinor Maj­um­dar, he explains the role of the ‘foreign hand’ (Outlook India)

Silence over Dykstra allegations reveals rift within federal Tories

Top Conservatives, including former prime minister Stephen Harper, kept silent about sexual-misconduct allegations involving Rick Dykstra even as the former Tory MP rose in the ranks of Ontario politics – a decision that is now revealing deep fractures in the federal party. Recent revelations that members of Mr. Harper's inner circle debated whether to remove Mr. Dykstra as a Conservative candidate in the 2015 election over sexual-assault allegations have exposed a massive rift in federal Tory circles that has spilled into the provincial level after Patrick Brown stepped down as leader of the Ontario Progressive Conservative Party over allegations of sexual misconduct. (Globe and Mail)

Staffers ‘told to stay away from certain MPs’ in Ottawa, says area MPP

For political neophytes, getting the chance to work on a federal election campaign in Ottawa is something of a dream job. It's not glamorous work. They fill out forms. Answer phones. Monitor social media. Nevertheless, it gives young people access to the most important halls of power and allows them play a role in shaping the future of the country. It also comes with a warning. (The Spec)

'The hardest thing you could ever imagine': Yazidi cousins who fled ISIS reunite in Winnipeg

Laila Mishko and Hari Moussa never thought they’d see each other again after the Islamic State attacked their northern Iraq village in August 2014, capturing Moussa and forcing Mishko to seek shelter on the unforgiving slopes of Mount Sinjar. Both managed to escape the Islamic State’s clutches, but it wasn’t until recently that each discovered the other was alive and living in the same Canadian city. (CTV)

Caroline Mulroney says she’s ‘new’ and ‘fresh’ and can get Tories back on track

Caroline Mulroney jumps into the Progressive Conservative leadership race Monday hoping to be an agent of change for a troubled party. “I’m the candidate that’s new, who’s fresh and can offer a new perspective on how we can get Ontario back on track,” the Harvard-educated lawyer told the Star on Sunday. “It’s been 15 years of Liberal government and people are sick and tired. They really want something completely new, something different.” (Toronto Star)

Syrian church devastated by ISIS holds first prayers in 6 years

A Syrian church has held prayers for the first time in years amid the rubble left by Islamic State fighters there. Around two dozen Christians gathered at St Mary's Church in Deir az-Zour, eastern Syria at the weekend for the first service in six years, according to The New Arab. (Christian Today)

Isis ‘far from finished’ as jihadi fighters regroup in Syria

Islamic State is regrouping in Syria despite being driven from its strongholds as the jihadi force exploits rivalries between its foes in an attempt to stage a comeback, Syrian opposition and regime fighters say. Over the past year, Islamic State, also known as Isis, has lost swaths of territory across Iraq and Syria as competing international alliances battled to defeat it – a US-led international coalition supports the Iraqi military and Kurdish-led militias in Syria, and a Russia-Iran-led alliance backs Syria’s president Bashar al-Assad and militias in Syria and Iraq. (Irish Times)

With ISIS in Iraq defeated, the US military is beginning to draw down from Baghdad

American troops have started to draw down from Iraq following Baghdad's declaration of victory over the Islamic State group last year, according to Western contractors at a U.S.-led coalition base in Iraq. Dozens of American soldiers have been transported from Iraq to Afghanistan on daily flights over the past week, along with weapons and equipment, the contractors said. (Business Insider) (FOX)

Iranian man shot and arrested after alleged break in attempt at Hassan Rouhani's Tehran office

An Iranian man has been shot and arrested after trying to break into President Hassan Rouhani’s office, local news has reported. Initial reports say the attacker was carrying a knife or sword. He was shot in the leg attempting to bypass a security checkpoint at the Pasteur Street complex in Tehran city centre, which is home to several government offices. (Independent)



Candice Malcolm: Why I won't be singing the new 'gender neutral' anthem

The feminist Liberal government has decided, on behalf of all Canadians, to change the lyrics of O Canada. Liberals in the Senate passed a bill this week, and just like that, without a national debate or any feedback from Canadians, the government will begin imposing the new lyrics to our anthem. According to our politically correct overlords, the national anthem was sexist. Yes, sexist. At government ceremonies, meetings and events, English Canadians will no longer hear “in all thy sons command,” and instead will be subject to the horribly clunky and awkward “in all of us command.” (Toronto Sun)

Kevin Carmichael: Trudeau talks a good game on gender diversity, but hasn't made the hard choices to do anything about it

The National Post’s John Ivison asked this week whether there were any limits to how far Justin Trudeau will go to foster diversity and inclusion? Answer: Yes. And that’s too bad. Those whose knowledge of Canada’s first openly feminist prime minister is based on their reading of, say, Rolling Stone, might be surprised to learn that Trudeau has yet to attempt anything particularly difficult when it comes to narrowing the gender divide. (Financial Post)

Toronto Sun: Jagmeet Singh, the accidental feminist

Someone has to tell the NDP’s Jagmeet Singh that he looked more like a grandstander than a leader when he bounced one of his MPs out of his party’s collective last week for some unknown transgression. It appeared he wanted to put himself into the #MeToo movement, even as he admitted there were no sexual impropriety allegations being levelled against Regina MP Erin Weir who, hours later, still didn’t know what he was being accused of doing. (Toronto Sun)

Lorne Gunter: Trudeau's wishy-washy pipeline approach leaves Notley deflated

No one who’s watched Alberta Premier Rachel Notley in action would ever call her a quitter or even a Debbie Downer. No matter the issue nor how turbulent the political winds, Notley can be counted on to be feisty at the very least. And whether one likes her policies or not, she is usually a combination of cheery, charming and proficient. (Toronto Sun)

Grant Dawson: Why Canada's PM Justin Trudeau is not the leader many believe he is

Stephen Harper, Canada’s former prime minister, might well have been less colourful and pleasing to eye and ear than the current Canadian leader. But Harper focused on what he believed Canada needed to get ahead in the world, not on his image and on making Canadians feel good about themselves. This contrasts markedly with the approach under Prime Minister Justin Trudeau. How much longer will Canada have to pay the price so Trudeau can remind us that he is a human rights activist? (Business Standard)



  • Standing Committee on Public Safety and National Security meets tomorrow to study Bill C-59, An Act Respecting National Security Matters (Public)
  • Standing Committee on National Defence meets tomorrow to study Canada’s involvement in NATO (Public)
  • Standing Committee on Citizenship and Immigration meet tomorrow on committee business (In Camera)