Several years ago the RCMP developed a variety of outreach divisions designed specifically to engage members of minority communities in Canada. One such division, The National Security Community Outreach program, was created to ‘ensure that all persons are treated with equality and respect’, a fundamental component of RCMP national security criminal investigations. ” The protection of our national security requires the awareness and involvement of all citizens. We encourage invitations to meet with community groups and welcome opportunities to work more closely with cultural and ethnic community representatives”.
Sounds good. What responsible police force wouldn’t want to strive to provide to all an opportunity to become informed of their rights and freedoms as well as the activities the RCMP undertakes to protect them? And certainly befitting to the present day climate of political correctness, diversity, outreach, dialogue and round table discussions appear apropos. The trouble is, whose sitting at the round tables?
In February 2007, ‘The Cross-Country Roundtable on Security’ was held in Toronto hosted by both the RCMP and CSIS. It was a raucous affair, complete with attendees that should never have been invited, or the uninvited told to leave. Among the cultural and ethnic community representatives in attendance was none other than controversial Imam Aly-Hindy of the Salaheddin mosque in suburban Toronto. Imam Aly- Hindy boasts of openly performing polygamous marriages, illegal in Canada. In a May, 2009 National Post Full Comment, columnist John Turley-Ewart writes:
‘Hindy is using polygamy as a proxy for his fundamentalist version of Islam, something he wants to see legitimized in Canadian society as a whole. It is part of an attempt at empire building, a bid that if successful will enhance his influence within the Muslim community and demonstrate that Ontario and Canada is too ignorant and too afraid of Islam to uphold its own laws. He has admitted as much, challenging Ontario’s government to dare stop him. “If the laws of the country conflict with Islamic law, if one goes against the other, then I am going to follow Islamic law, simple as that.”
He took advantage of the outreach event by complaining that six Muslims did not obtain security clearance for sensitive government jobs. Hindy’s mosque made headlines this week when the National Post learned that Salaheddin has received hundreds of thousands of dollars from Middle East donors since 2009. The mosque is described by the RCMP as a “focal point for Toronto Islamic radicals” and by the New York Police Department as a “known radical mosque”. Hindy said that by securing overseas funds the mosque was “preserving Muslim culture”.
The Canadian Arab Federation (CAF) also made an appearance at the Sheraton Hotel. This group formed in 1967, represents the interests of Arab Canadians with respect to the formulation of public policy in Canada. With over 40 member organizations, it seeks to ‘combat hate and racism’, is vocal against what it perceives to be anti-Arab and anti-Muslim activities and issues position papers to the government on it’s policies in South Asia and it’s domestic immigration affairs. It also boasts of promoting the richness of Muslim and Arab culture. Not a group to sit idly by, it appears to seek out controversy. It too complained, primarily about Canada’s Mid East policies and the Muslim ‘brothers’ being deported for terrorism.
This past week the now defunded and ostracized CAF appeared at ” Exposing Israeli Apartheid and the Violation of Palestinian Rights” held at the University of Toronto. The groups president Khaled Mouammar took no time at all to vent his hatred for Canada and the mistreatment his organization has suffered under the Conservative government. Mr. Mouammar finds respect illusive; it may have something to do with the fact that he called Immigration Minister Jason Kenney a “professional whore” and insisted on flying the flags of Hamas and Hezbollah at a rally in Toronto. In addition to Mr. Kenney’s decision to review or eliminate funding to the group, he further stated ” We should not be rewarding those who express views that are contrary to Canada’s best liberal values of tolerance and mutual respect”.
Last August, one day after RCMP investigators searched the homes of three arrested terror suspects, it’s outreach office in Ottawa called a swift meeting of the cultural diversity consultative committee to apologize to local Muslims. They felt it necessary to apologize that the bust had taken place during Ramadan. More than a dozen meetings were held with Muslim groups including visits to mosques, community centres and several meals to break the Ramadan fast. It’s difficult to determine which groups were in attendance, however representatives from the Tamil, Sikh, Asian, Jewish, Muslim and First Nations communities were present. The Canadian Islamic Congress carries on it’s web site an article claiming the apology ‘never happened’ despite claims to the contrary. Nazira Naz Tareen writes:
“At no time was an apology asked for by anyone present, nor was one given by any officer of the RCMP or the Ottawa Police. One question raised during the presentation was: “Since the Canadian Security Intelligence Service (CSIS) and the RCMP had been investigating the three (detained) individuals for over a year, why were the arrests not made before or after Ramadan?” When one of the officers from the panel explained the reason, all of us accepted the answer as reasonable in the circumstances”.
” To show support to our Muslim brothers and sisters during Ramadan, there will be no food or or drink during this most important meeting. The meeting is for one hour only, in order to observe prayer time and the breaking of the fast during Ramadan”, wrote Cpl. Wayne Russett, the RCMP’s aboriginal and ethnic liaison officer in Ottawa. Prime Minister Harper responded to the apology given by saying “”In fairness this is an operational matter for the RCMP and I wouldn’t pretend to know all the details and aspects of the story. But the general approach that this government would expect to see (from law enforcement agencies) is that the law, our important laws, are enforced every day of the year.”
In October of last year, the RCMP was told to drop the extreme event billed as “Just and Sustainable Peace- A Global Challenge”. The ‘peace conference’ was promoted by the ethnic liaison office to members of the national force, with one of the participants a member of the cultural diversity committee. Public Safety Minister Vic Toews stated ” Let me be clear. Canada’s national police force must have no involvement in any event organized by those who promote extremism or hatred”. “As soon as I learned about this event, I asked the RCMP to explain its involvement. I have asked it to immediately cease any participation”. The listed speakers included Davood Ameri of The Islamic World Peace Forum, a group whose website contains graphic anti-Semitic cartoons, complete with articles calling the United States a terrorist state and several professors from the University of Tehran closely linked to the regime of Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. The moderator for this event was Imam Zijad Delic of the Canadian Islamic Congress. His speaking engagement at the Department of National Defence was cancelled earlier in the month after Defence Minister Peter MacKay deemed both Zelic and his outfit extremist.
Community Outreach Program (COP) was created by the RCMP INSET in May of 2005 to prevent terrorism through the engagement of partners in all sections of society. Law enforcement agencies and security officials are increasingly coming under scrutiny, bombarded by Islamic activist groups intent to ensure that ‘fairness and justice is afforded to Muslims’, as if it were denied them and given instead to all others. CAIR-CAN has made it their goal to breathe life into exaggerated claims of rampant and escalating Islamophobia, to the point of creating publications and kits. The Ramadan kit is boasted in CAIR-CAN’s Annual Review 2007 as an essential in any Canadian Muslim media activist’s toolbox. Over 100 copies of The Educators Guide to Islamic Religious Practice were ordered by one school board and over 400 ‘Know Your Rights’ booklets sent to one conference. Similar guides for journalists, employers and health care providers are revamped with a new look with one also written for correctional services and the law enforcement community. CAIR-CAN works to “foster an accurate understanding and greater appreciation of Islam in Canadian society through community education and outreach”. It states it’s full independence from its sister organization, Washington based CAIR, although “the two coordinate on areas of mutual concern”.
A document found on the RCMP website entitled “Words Make Worlds” is designed to “stimulate discussion among RCMP members along with their counterparts in other agencies, particularly with regard to the need for a common language to describe terrorism adequately”. The introduction continues to say “Just as critical is the need for a comprehensive understanding of the process of radicalization and the manner in which we may intervene”. Much of what is written leaves one with an adequate sense of the reality pertaining to radicalization and the issues and observations the author suggests surround it. Yet when referring to the distinction between Islam and Islamism, the Muslim Brotherhood appears as a rather benign, quasi-secret society:
“It’s (MB) founders and chief ideologues were predominantly anti-Western and tended to characterize Islamic political aspirations as fundamentally counter to democracy. Increasingly however, the Brotherhood has repudiated radicalism and adopted a gradualist perspective which, while not aligned to Western democratic principles, (the Brotherhood is linked to Hamas for example) is more positively oriented toward them. Few members of the Muslim Brotherhood espouse terrorism and in many Muslim countries they have served as voices of moderation, channeling people away from violence and toward legitimate political and charitable activities”.
A more moderate appearance by the Muslim Brotherhood may be true, but only insofar as it’s tactics may have changed to suit present circumstances. It’s strategy remains the same. The significance of Hamas, the Muslim Brotherhood’s oft- violent offshoot entity, should not be relegated to mere parentheses, especially considering Canada has placed the organization on its list of terrorist groups. Likewise, the Muslim Brotherhood’s continued aspiration of settlement through non-violent means should not be downplayed, as a failure to recognize the inroads already made in response to Al-Ikhwan’s settlement process deliberately or otherwise, aids in the maintenance and endurance of it’s core objective.
Remaining true to it’s original goal, the Muslim Brotherhood clearly states:
The process of settlement of Islam is a “Civilization-Jihadist” process with all the word means. The Ikhwan must understand that all their work in America is a kind of grand Jihad in eliminating and destroying the Western civilization from within and “sabotaging” their miserable house by their hands and the hands of the believers so that it is eliminated and God’s religion is made victorious over all religions. Without this level of understanding, we are not up to this challenge and have not prepared ourselves for Jihad yet. It is a Muslim’s destiny to perform Jihad and work wherever he is and wherever he lands until the final hour comes, and there is no escape from that destiny except for those who choose to slack.
It’s difficult to determine whether these representatives are invited to various outreach events specifically and on a regular, repeat basis or whether they respond to a more general, open invitation. If CAIR-CAN, the CIC and the CAF are on speed-dial, do the authorities presume they have something beneficial to contribute? Or is the influence and outreach the other way around? Salma Siddiqui, vice president of the Muslim Canadian Congress says the notion that Muslims need special treatment or that their religious sensibilities need to be addressed is patronizing. She adds that police diversity outreach committees should be dismantled. Tarek Fatah, author and open critic of radical outfits, agrees. He asserts too many Canadian institutions are crumbling beneath the pressures of political correctness and are making themselves susceptible to infiltration by extremists. Ikhwan should not be setting the agenda for security services. Outreach or outrage?
Grace for Vladtepesblog.