Discussion on Bill C-51, Anti-Terrorism Act, 2015
The No Harbour For War newsletter V.4 No.1b was published in mid-April for the April 18th national day of action against Bill C-51. The page 1 statement, reprinted below, was also issued as a leaflet for this event.
Statement from the Editorial Committee of No Harbour For War*, Halifax, Nova Scotia
Over the last month and a half, No Harbour For War has not failed to notice the massive outpouring popular condemnation of the Harper government’s Bill C-51. This opposition has itself emerged from all coasts and corners of Canada.
Many of the individuals appearing before the parliamentary committee hearings on this bill share the same basic conclusion: this so-called anti-terrorism law appears to have been drafted to give special government-directed bodies (CSIS etc) a licence for the government of the day to undermine the free-speech rights nominally guaranteed Canadian citizens and residents in the Charter of Rights and Freedoms.
No Harbour For War has arrived at the same conclusion. In this connection, No Harbour For War also could not help but notice another feature that has aroused the just anger of quite a few of C-51’s opponents. Bill C-51 has been introduced amid a massive effort by the Harper government to black- mail the opposition parties in Parliament to support an expanded Canadian Forces participation in a US-led NATO-framed effort to pursue terrorist bands active on the territories of central Iraq and the western-most corners of the Turkish-Syrian border.
No Harbour For War has thus arrived at the following conclusion: the threat posed by the Harper government exercising its “freedom” to proceed with aggressive wars in foreign countries as though domestic opposition didn’t exist becomes real to the extent that Canadians fail to block the attack on their Charter rights.
That brings this discussion to the meat of the matter.
Freedom for the government to wage aggressive wars always and inevitably bumps up against the rights and freedoms of the citizenry. That is why Harper & Co. would have us believe that such curtailment of peacetime rights and freedoms is necessary as well as inevitable if its efforts at detecting and eliminating acts of internal subversion by random terrorist-minded individuals are to bear fruit.
How does this square with alleged terrorist plots actually pursued in US and Canadian courts?
Every single conviction obtained in US courts against alleged terrorist conspiracies on that country’s soil since the 9-11 attack on the Twin Towers has relied ultimately on “evidence” planted on the targeted “conspirators” by FBI-incited and-or FBI-trained informants. Canada’s courts furnish fewer examples — but the same pattern. The VIA Rail terrorism case recently concluded in Ontario provincial court once again crucially relied on an FBI- trained informant planted inside the “conspiracy” to explicitly propose the train derailment.
No Harbour For War calls on Haligonians and our fellow Nova Scotians to escalate opposition to Bill C-51 and to the expanded Canadian involvement in the US-NATO murder of the people of Iraq and Syria. Alongside a quickening of the tempo of mass actions in opposition to both Bill C-51 and the expanded involvement in NATO’s war on Iraq and Syria, broader and much expanded public discussion of these matters is most urgent at this time.
The newsletter also includes:
- -an analysis of Bill C-51 by the Canadian Association of University Teachers;
- two articles denouncing Obama’s declaration that Venezuela is a threat to U.S. national security;
- No Harbour For War’s diary for the first part of 2015;
- two articles on military deployments by the U.S., NATO and Canada;
- a poster for May Day 2015 – Friday, May 1 at 5:30pm at Grand Parade in Halifax.
Please download the attached pdf of the full newsletter, reformatted to 8 & 1/2 x 11 for easier printing, and send any comments or articles to email@example.com
*No Harbour for War is a Halifax-based organization that fights for the rights of all and for an anti-war government in Canada. It can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org