True North Initiative News Scan 03 05 2018


Canadian who admitted to plotting terrorist attacks asks for ’second chance’

A Canadian who admitted to plotting a terrorist attack on New York City is pleading for “a second chance” in a letter submitted to the court ahead of his upcoming sentencing. In the letter filed to a New York court on Friday, Abdulrahman El Bahnasawy of Mississauga, Ont., outlined his personal history with addiction and mental illness, and explained that he felt American airstrikes against the Middle East drove him to jihadism. (Toronto Sun) (Huffington Post) (Global)

RCMP knew Canadian was treated at mental-health facility before entering U.S., terrorism arrest, conviction: documents​

Documents obtained by Global News show the RCMP was aware an 18-year-old Canadian being investigated by the FBI for terrorism and links to the Islamic State was treated at Toronto’s Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH) prior to crossing into the United States where he was arrested and eventually pleaded guilty to seven terrorism-related charges. (Global)

Canadian ISIS plotter could test government’s rehabilitation strategy

A Canadian awaiting sentencing in the United States for planning terrorist attacks in New York City for the so-called Islamic State could soon test the government’s approach to dealing with violent extremists returning from abroad. Abdulrahman El-Bahnasawy’s lawyers have asked for a short sentence for the Mississauga, Ont. resident so he can return to Canada, where his family is proposing he undergo mental health treatment and religious counselling. (Global)

New video casts doubt on Trudeau's version of Atwal scandal

New video footage, uncovered by the Sun, casts doubt on Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s explanation about what happened on his disastrous trip to India. Just hours before news broke that a convicted Khalistani terrorist was part of Trudeau’s entourage in India, Liberal MP Randeep Sarai was interviewed on India Today and can be seen touting the Canada-India security relationship. Sarai has since been thrown under the bus and blamed for inviting Jaspal Atwal — a B.C. Sikh convicted of the attempted murder of an Indian cabinet minister in B.C. in 1986 — to an official state dinner reception with Prime Minister Justin Trudeau in India. (Toronto Sun)

Trudeau’s image takes biggest hit since 2015 on India trip, goes from ‘golden boy’ to a ‘bit of a joke,’ say politicos

Justin Trudeau’s recent controversy-plagued India trip had the “most profound” negative impact on the government’s brand since it won power in 2015 and was another “unforced error” by the Liberals that has pushed the prime minister from being the “golden boy” to “a bit of a joke,” say politicos. However, Liberals insist the trip was nonetheless a success in which the government signed bilateral trade agreements worth $1-billion. (Hill Times)

Millions to manage asylum seekers doesn't mean new influx: Liberals

The $173 million set aside in this week's federal budget to respond to people illegally crossing into Canada from the U.S. to seek asylum shouldn't be interpreted as officials predicting another record-breaking year for asylum claims, the federal Liberals say. "The reality is, on a forward-looking basis, that we want to be as prepared as possible for whatever eventuality," said Mark Holland, the parliamentary secretary for public safety. (Metro) (IPolitics)

Asylum seekers sit in state of limbo as they wait for refugee claims to be heard in Canada

According to Welcome Place, 83 asylum seekers have made their way across the US-Canada border in to Manitoba this year already. This number joins the other hundreds waiting for a hearing for their refugee claims in Manitoba. In 2016, Welcome Place said it worked with 266 asylum seekers who crossed at the Manitoba-North Dakota border. That number jumped significantly in 2017 to 1,126 people. (Global)

Morneau says Canada 'prepared to react' against U.S. tariffs if necessary

After U.S. President Donald Trump announced a proposal to slap hefty tariffs on steel and aluminum imports, Finance Minister Bill Morneau says Canada is ready to retaliate if necessary. “Canada is an integral part of the supply chain on steel and aluminum in North America,” Morneau told CTV Question Period host Evan Solomon. “We clearly have said that this is important to maintain the ability for us to trade back and forth… And obviously we’re going to be firm. We’re going to say that this is not an acceptable possibility for us to put tariffs on an important commodity like steel and aluminum.” (CTV)

Canada seeks exemption to Trump's steel tariffs, vows retaliation

Canada is seeking an exemption to new U.S. trade restrictions on aluminum and steel, and is vowing to retaliate if it's slapped with any new tariffs. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau called the proposal "absolutely unacceptable," echoing the phrase used by Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland yesterday. A government official, speaking on background, said Canada believes any new tariffs should not apply to this country due to the highly integrated nature of the North American steel market, and because of the close co-operation between the two countries on defence issues. (CBC)

Their son went to Syria. They’re facing 14 years in prison for trying to send him money — they say to bring him home

It was early 2016, shortly after Letts and Lane had been charged with terrorism for trying to send money to their son Jack to help him escape from Raqqa, Syria. Jack Letts, who has both British and Canadian citizenship, converted to Islam as a teenager and went to Syria in 2014. By the following year, he told his parents he was desperate. Scared that Daesh would kill him, he begged them to send money for smugglers so he could escape. (Toronto Star)


OTHER STORIES (Domestic and International)

Police keeping an eye on several ‘newcomer’ gangs popping up in Winnipeg

They come to Canada in search of a better life, more opportunity and often a fresh start. But for some immigrant newcomers it’s an opportunity that is being taken away by gangs. “These are good kids, very good kids when they move here, with lots of potential,” Director of Immigration Partnership Abdi Ahmed said. “I know kids who in April were good kids. Who had no association with gangs. By September, they were hard core involved in street crime issues.” (Global)

Cross-border people smuggler loses battle to stay in Canada

A B.C. man caught driving a van full of undocumented Indian nationals into Washington state has lost his battle to remain in Canada. In a decision released last month, a federal court judge upheld a decision to declare Karamdeep Singh Bagri inadmissible to Canada because he was involved in people smuggling. (CBC)

Pleas for Canada to grant Afghan widow, baby, asylum after father shot and killed

A Winnipeg couple, who say their son was executed after his family allowed his sisters to go to school abroad, is begging the Canadian government to help bring their daughter-in-law and grandson out of hiding in Afghanistan to Canada. CBC has agreed to conceal the identity of the family out of concerns it could draw attention to their loved ones in hiding. (CBC)

RCMP raising concerns about Liberals' changes to criminal background checks

The RCMP is taking issue with changes the Liberal government made to criminal background checks and the pardons system, pointing to cases of people with "disturbing" records applying to work with vulnerable individuals, CBC News has learned. The force's concerns were summarized in a briefing note prepared by public safety staff to update Public Safety Minister Ralph Goodale on the changes to the system. (CBC)

Calgary MP not stepping down despite breaking harassment rules

Darshan Kang says he will stay on as an MP despite a House of Commons investigation finding he violated Parliament’s harassment policy. On Friday, an investigator found the Calgary Skyview MP acted improperly by trying to enter the hotel room of a young female staffer who worked in his constituency office in June of 2017. (Calgary Sun)

Bill Morneau Unaware Renaming Tory Tax Credit Erased Part Of Jim Flaherty’s Legacy

The finance minister says he had no idea a tax credit the government renamed in its budget this week essentially erased a piece of Jim Flaherty's legacy. In an interview with HuffPost Canada, Bill Morneau said the decision to rename the Working Income Tax Benefit (WITB) to the Canada Workers Benefit (CWB) was "absolutely not" a snub at Conservatives who introduced the benefit 11 years ago. (Huffington Post)

Experts raise concerns about Ottawa’s planned crackdown on drug-impaired drivers

Scientists and lawyers are raising a series of concerns over Ottawa's plans to combat drug-impaired driving, saying the proposed regime is not based on evidence and will struggle to withstand legal challenges. Bill C-46, which would create new drug-impaired driving offences, is currently being studied in the Senate, where there is growing pressure on senators to amend the proposed legislation before it comes into law. The government wants the new rules in place before cannabis is legalized for recreational use, a move expected in late summer. (Globe and Mail)

Masked 'Ungovernables' vandalize Hamilton street

The “Ungovernables” smashed windows, set off fireworks and wreaked havoc along trendy Locke St. But the masked thugs did not stop Reuben Vanderkwaak and his wife, Heidi, from serving up snacks at Donut Monster or deter the usual weekend lineup of people who wanted them — although they did delay things some. Instead of baking doughnuts, the staff was busy cleaning eight panes of smashed glass — courtesy of a gutless mob of anarchist types who trashed a bunch of small mom-and-pop businesses around 10 p.m. Saturday. (Toronto Sun)

HIVE document shows how far Trans Mountain opponents will go to orchestrate outrage

There’s been lots of talk about mass action to disrupt the construction of Kinder Morgan Canada Inc.’s Trans Mountain pipeline expansion. But a leaked document outlining a strategy by a coalition of environmental groups to fight the project shows how far they are prepared to go to orchestrate outrage. (Calgary Herald)

Ex-CIA director says Canada should be concerned about election interference

The former director of the CIA says Canada should be concerned about potential interference, Russian or otherwise, in the fast-approaching 2019 federal election. "I think any democracy these days needs to be concerned about foreign interference in their elections," said John Brennan in an exclusive interview with Evan Solomon on CTV's Question Period. (CTV)

ISIS releases shocking video which appears to show the desperate final moments and deaths of four US soldiers as ISIS fighters ambush them in Niger

ISIS has released a sickening video appearing to show their fighters ambushing and killing four US soldiers in Niger. The 9 minute, 15 second video appears to be shot from multiple helmet cams on the US soldiers who died in on October 4 in Tongo Tongo, Niger in an ambush by 50 ISIS militants. (Daily Mail)


A court in Iraq sentenced 15 Turkish women to death by hanging on Sunday after they were found guilty of joining the Islamic State terrorist group as brides, according to reports. The women confessed to marrying ISIS fighters and providing the group with aid, including logistical support and help carrying out terrorist attacks, according to the judge. (Newsweek)

Isis fanatic tried to recruit children for 'death squad' to launch terror attacks in London

An unqualified teacher has been convicted of trying to recruit an “army of children” to launch a series of Isis-inspired attacks on dozens of targets across London. Umar Haque brainwashed young pupils he taught at an Islamic school and mosque and made them act out atrocities. The 25-year-old was still ranting about the self-proclaimed Islamic State as he was dragged from the dock after being convicted of preparing acts of terrorism. (

Modi Is Getting Ready To Stop China, As The Indian Economy Booms

India won’t be encircled by China. And it won’t let China make the South China Sea its own sea. That’s a dual message India has been sending these days, as its economy leaped ahead of China’s to become the world’s fastest large economy -- and as investors grow wary over the rising geopolitical risks in the Asia-Pacific region. (Forbes)



Toronto Sun: As Trump plays economic hardball, Canada needs to pick up its game

The world has been reacting to news that U.S. President Donald Trump intends to slap a 25% tariff on steel imports and 10% on aluminum into the United States. This will without doubt have a punishing effect on Canadian industry. “In 2016, over 10 million MT of steel, worth over $11.8 billion, was traded between our two countries, with Canada shipping $5.87 billion to the U.S (5.4MMT), and the U.S. shipping $5.96 billion (4.7MMT) to Canada,” according to the Canadian Steel Producers Association. (Toronto Sun)

Conrad Black: Canadians crave an identity, not this fluffy nonsense from Trudeau

Justin Trudeau’s recent visit to India has been panned internationally as a disaster unlike any foreign trip by a Canadian leader since John Diefenbaker crashed a meeting between British prime minister Harold MacMillan and U.S. President John Kennedy at Canadian industrialist E.P. Taylor’s house in the Bahamas in 1963, and returned claiming that NATO had reconsidered its nuclear strategy and that Canada was rethinking its commitment to nuclear warheads for anti-aircraft missiles in the far north. This was debunked by everyone, and the Diefenbaker government fell. Justin Trudeau’s costuming exhibition and affability with a Sikh terrorist is unlikely to have, and does not deserve, such a radical denouement.  (National Post)

Mark Bonokoski: As Trump threatens tariffs, Trudeau Liberals have no Plan B

As our prime minister was tootling around touting the progressive programs he unveiled in last week’s gender-parity budget, U.S. President Donald Trump was tossing lightning bolts. The man with the orange backcomb was creating some ugly climate change on the trade front while Justin Trudeau claimed Friday to have spoken directly to the president and seemed certain his Liberal “sunny ways” would evade the storm clouds. (Toronto Sun)

Tom Parkin: Trudeau’s India bungle had one cause: Fear of Jagmeet Singh

The official rationale for Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s recent India trip was to promote foreign investment and trade. But it’s real purpose was all domestic politics. And specifically, the India trip was all about He-Who-Liberals-Must-Not-Name: Jagmeet Singh, who’s working to build NDP support among Indo-Canadian voters. The Liberals are absolutely obsessed and paranoid about The-Opponent-They-Will-Not-Name. (Toronto Sun)

Terry Milewski: It's the Atwal effect — and nobody's immune

The tsunami is spreading far from the epicentre of the Jaspal Atwal earthquake. And it doesn't discriminate between political parties. The Liberals, of course, have been the ones swept farthest out to sea. A week after Atwal — a former wannabe hitman for the Sikh separatist cause — was summoned to dine with Justin Trudeau in India, the prime minister and his national security adviser were neck-deep and clinging to a conspiracy theory. (CBC)

Melissa Lantsman: Trudeau buys votes by mortgaging Canada's future

Budgets are often an exercise in political communication, they tell a story. But with the Trudeau government’s Budget 2018, or whatever it was called — you wouldn’t know it. At least it didn’t tell a story that anyone could remember, at least not one that tells us anything about what the government intends on doing. If you asked 10 people what was in Wednesday’s federal budget, I can guarantee you that the uncomfortable silence would be louder than the blank stare you will get in return. (Toronto Sun)

David Menzies: Media isn’t buying “barrage of lies” from Trudeau Liberals on Atwal’s invite

On Friday’s episode of Rebel Roundup, Ezra Levant joined me to discuss the contradictory barrage of lies coming from the Trudeau Liberals as they try to explain how a convicted terrorist made the invitation list to an official state dinner in India. (Rebel)



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