Tag Archives: War Measures Act / Emergencies Act (1988)

‘Rolling Thunder Ottawa’: What should citizens and residents expect

From the perspective of the majority of Ottawa residents, a central problem the “Freedom Convoy” raised was what does a citizen or resident do when their rights are not defended by the state and, even worse, when the state is itself aligned against them | PAULINE EASTON

Police lines in downtown Ottawa, February 19, 2022, after Emergencies Act invoked.

News reports indicate that a group of motorcycle riders calling itself “Rolling Thunder Ottawa” plans to converge in Ottawa this weekend, April 29-May 1. It conjures up the spectre of the “Freedom Convoy” which occupied the city for an extended period, from January 22 to February 23, thanks to the involvement of current and former military and police and mercenaries of various kinds as well as rank and file crying freedom against vaccine mandates and for alternative healthcare systems and myriad other things. From the perspective of the majority of Ottawa residents, a central problem that the “Freedom Convoy” raised was what does a citizen or resident do when their rights are not defended by the state and, even worse, when the state is itself aligned against them. It is a serious question indeed.

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Parliamentary debate underscores modus operandi used to justify making emergency measures permanent

Canadians need to prepare for what comes next. The peoples of Canada, Quebec and the Indigenous peoples cannot permit their resistance movements to be criminalized and suppressed | PAULINE EASTON

Canadians are led to believe that a parliamentary debate is held to argue things out between two sides — the party in power and the party or parties in opposition which, between them, are said to represent the Canadian people. This is said notwithstanding that 37 per cent of the eligible voters did not cast a ballot at all and thus did not authorize either the party in power or parties in opposition to speak in their name.

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Invocation of emergency powers: Self-serving reports to justify emergency measures

To simply repeat that the emergency measures and police powers protect national security is a ruse to deceive the public about what is going on.

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Invocation of emergency powers: Dirty deeds in the name of national security and national interest

Whether we speak of the organized blockades at border crossings or the occupation in Ottawa, or Coastal GasLink facilities on the Wet’suwet’en yintah or any other, what constitutes “critical infrastructure” to be protected in the name of “national security” and the “national interest” is defined not by the Canadian, Quebec and Indigenous peoples but by those who wield the decision-making power in a manner which favours narrow private interests.

Comox action in support of Wet’suwet’en, February 3, 2020.

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Financial measures applied under the Emergencies Act

Current developments related to declaration of Public Order Emergency

While debate was taking place in the House of Commons, February 17, on whether or not it will approve the Liberal’s invoking of the Emergencies Act and the related regulatory powers, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance Chrystia Freeland announced to the media rather than the House that she had ordered financial institutions to comply with its regulations.

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Canadian Civil Liberties Association launches lawsuit against Emergencies Act

On February 17, the Canadian Civil Liberties Association (CCLA) announced it will pursue litigation to challenge the federal government’s use of the Emergencies Act. It issued a press release which says:

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Parliamentary debate to confirm public order emergency

Current developments related to declaration of public order emergency

On February 16, a motion was tabled in the House of Commons to confirm the February 14 declaration of a public order emergency by the Prime Minister under the Emergencies Act. It was tabled by Public Safety Minister Marco Mendicino. The motion reads: “That, pursuant to section 58 of the Emergencies Act, this House confirm the declaration of a public order emergency proclaimed on February 14, 2022.”

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For your information: Regulations for implementation of Emergencies Act

The regulations put in place following the government’s invocation of the Emergencies Act were published in the Canada Gazette on February 15, 2022. They read as follows:

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Standoff in Ottawa continues despite police measures to clear out protestors

Current developments related to declaration of Public Order Emergency

Police in Ottawa made over 100 arrests on Friday, February 18 and at least 47 more by 2:00 pm on Saturday, news agencies report. In addition, a total of 38 vehicles have been towed and others are reported to have left voluntarily.

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For your information: Canadian Civil Liberties Association statement on the Emergencies Act

The federal government has not met the threshold necessary to invoke the Emergencies Act. This law creates a high and clear standard for good reason: the Act allows government to bypass ordinary democratic processes. This standard has not been met.

The Emergencies Act can only be invoked, according to its own terms, when a situation “seriously endangers the lives, health or safety of Canadians and is of such proportions or nature as to exceed the capacity or authority of a province to deal with it,” or “seriously threatens the ability of the Government of Canada to preserve the sovereignty, security and territorial integrity of Canada” and when the situation “cannot be effectively dealt with under any other law of Canada.”

The Emergencies Act is there to address these kinds of extreme threats to Canada, not to protect the economy.

Governments regularly deal with difficult situations, and do so using powers granted to them by democratically elected representatives. Emergency legislation should not be normalized. It threatens our democracy and our civil liberties.

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For your information: Declaration of public order emergency

– Government of Canada –

PC Number: 2022-0106
Date: 2022-02-14

Whereas the Governor in Council believes, on reasonable grounds, that a public order emergency exists and necessitates the taking of special temporary measures for dealing with the emergency;

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Standoff involving ‘Freedom Convoy’ continues: Many question why the Prime Minister invoked the Emergencies Act

Bill Blair, Minister of Emergency Preparedness, made the rounds on CBC Radio the day after Prime Minister Justin Trudeau invoked the 1988 Emergencies Act. What stands out when he appeared on CBC’s local Ottawa morning show, then on The Current which broadcasts nationally is his inability to speak sensibly as to why the government sought recourse to the Emergencies Act.

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Prime Minister convokes emergency measures: Beware of secret deals and use of police powers against the peoples’ struggles

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CPC(M-L) categorically opposes the invocation of the 1988 Emergencies Act. The invocation of emergency powers further raises anarchy to authority. Canadians must themselves work out what to do when both sides are wrong.

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This Day. Anniversary of the Proclamation of War Measures in 1970

Police powers unjustly imprisoned hundreds uring 1970 “October Crisis”

Army deployed on the streets of Montreal October 15, 1970, the day before the War Measures Act is invoked.

October 16 marks the 51st anniversary of the proclamation of the War Measures Act by Pierre Elliott Trudeau and his Liberal government. Trudeau declared a state of “apprehended insurrection” in order to use the powers of the War Measures Act, which had been used in World War I and World War II, to indefinitely detain people without charges or trial.

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50th anniversary of War Measures Act (VI) – Film Les Ordres by Michel Brault (1974)

Sixth in a series on the issues and goals of the “October Crisis” and the forces in motion, reposted from TML Weekly.

Image from the film Les Ordres

Michel Brault’s film Les Ordres (The Orders) was made four years after the events triggered by the proclamation of the War Measures Act in October 1970. The film focuses on the repercussions of the War Measures Act, and more precisely on the resulting arbitrary arrests. At the time of the making of the film, the frustration among the people arising from the events of October 1970 was still palpable as a result of the flagrant violation of the individual freedoms of citizens. The film deals with this legislation and the reaction of the government of Pierre Elliot Trudeau to trample the rights and freedoms of citizens in the name of public safety. The message conveyed by Michel Brault is clear. He explains that he “didn’t want to make a film about the October Crisis, but rather about humiliation.”

To view the film click here

For a trailer of the movie Les Ordres with English subtitles, click here.

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50th anniversary of War Measures Act (V) – Courageous resistance to military occupation and attempt to isolate Quebec

Fifth in a series on the issues and goals of the “October Crisis” and the forces in motion, reposted from TML Weekly.

University of Calgary students hold a large rally on campus on October 27, 1970 to denounce the War Measures Act. After the rally, 300 students march angrily to downtown Calgary. Some 1,000 students in Regina organize similar actions.

By Christine Dandenault

When the government of Pierre Elliot Trudeau enacted the War Measures Act on October 16, 1970 and the army was deployed in the streets of Ottawa and Montreal before that and arrests began, opposition and resistance was immediate across the country. Students and youth, intellectuals, working people and other collectives in their thousands protested all across the country. The following account is taken from newspapers published by the Communist Party of Canada (Marxist-Leninist) and its affiliated organizations at the time the events were taking place. Continue reading

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50th anniversary of War Measures Act (IV) – Honour to those unjustly imprisoned during the 1970 ‘October Crisis’

Fourth in a series on the issues and goals of the “October Crisis” and the forces in motion, reposted from TML Weekly.

Rally of 1,500 in Vancouver, October 19, 1970, one of many actions across the country supporting the Quebec people’s struggle and opposing imposition of the War Measures Act.

Youth fill Paul Sauvé Arena in Montreal in support of Quebec national liberation on the eve of the declaration of the War Measures Act in October 1970. A number of the youth in attendance are among those arrested in the raids which follow the Act being invoked.

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50th anniversary of War Measures Act (III) – State-sanctioned Black Ops and cover-ups

Third of a series on the issues and goals of the “October Crisis” and the forces in motion, reposted from TML Weekly.

Police attack demonstration led by CPC(M-L) activists outside the Royal York Hotel in Toronto, March 3, 1971. The demonstration supports the Quebec people and opposes the attacks launched on them by Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau’s government.

By Anna Di Carlo

There are many official as well as media accounts of crimes committed against Canadians, Quebeckers and Indigenous peoples by the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP). Some of the crimes are left out of the accounts altogether; others are said to be unacceptable aberrations or necessary despite the violations of rights. All in all, it is said that such crimes belong to the past or even that they have contributed to strengthening our democracy. The Canadian Security Intelligence Service (CSIS) was created in 1984 to, allegedly, “collect intelligence but not pass to action” and thus we were to believe that the days of the dirty deeds of the RCMP were over. Of course, it is not true that after 1984 the security services stopped violating the rights of the people. These include cover-up of their involvement in the 1985 Air India disaster. Since 9/11, every manner of excuse has been given to violate rights with impunity. Bill C-51, the Anti-Terrorism Act 2015 extends powers to CSIS to allow it to conduct activities that resemble those of the RCMP prior to 1984.

This article provides a brief review of the official story and what the Communist Party of Canada (Marxist-Leninist) had to say about this at the time the events were taking place. The aim of the review is to sum up this experience so that people can provide themselves with a suitable guide to action which serves the present and opens a path to a safe and bright future. Continue reading

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50th anniversary of War Measures Act (II) – Police power above the civil power: The true nature of Canadian democracy

Second of a series on the issues and goals of the “October Crisis” and the forces in motion, reposted from TML Weekly.

Demonstration outside Tanguay prison in Montreal, January 1971, calls for the release of political prisoners detained under the War Measures Act.

Media disinformation about the invocation of the War Measures Act in 1970 tends to focus only on some events which were taking place in October 1970 and discussion on whether or not Pierre Elliot Trudeau over-reacted or if there truly was a state of apprehended insurrection at the time. Information brought to light in 2010 about the RCMP’s secret plans, first devised in 1950, for indefinite detention and internment of thousands of Canadians, code-named PROFUNC (PROminent FUNCtionaries of the Communist Party), was used, amongst other things, to suggest that the phenomenon of the police being above the civil power was a thing of the past. Continue reading

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50th anniversary of War Measures Act (I) – The significance of the proclamation of War Measures

Demonstration on Parliament Hill in Ottawa in 1970 opposing the invoking of the War Measures Act.

First of a series on the issues and goals of the “October Crisis” and the forces in motion, reposted from TML Weekly.

The Significance of the Proclamation of War Measures

By Pauline Easton

Army deployed on the streets of Montreal October 15, 1970, the day before the War Measures Act is invoked.

October 16, 2020 will mark the 50th Anniversary of the proclamation of the War Measures Act by the Liberal government headed by Pierre Elliott Trudeau. Trudeau declared a state of “apprehended insurrection” in order to use the powers of the War Measures Act, which had been used in World War I and World War II to indefinitely detain people without charges or trial.

The police carried out more than 1,000 raids between October 7 and 10, 1970. Using the provisions of the National Defence Act, the army appeared on the streets of Ottawa on October 12 and on the streets of Montreal on October 15. After the War Measures Act was invoked, the police carried out another 3,068 raids and searches without warrants. During these raids police arrested 465 people and held them without charges. The vast majority of the people arrested were released after 21 days without charges while others were held for longer periods. Continue reading

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How the Trudeau Liberals seized emergency police powers behind the backs of Canadians, and what we can do

No to secret deals! Parliamentary negotiations should be broadcast live! | TML Weekly commentary

The cartel parties which have seats in the Parliament of Canada passed Bill C-13, the COVID-19 Emergency Response Act, on March 25. The bill was negotiated between the parties and with business interests and between the Premiers in secret negotiations behind the backs of Canadians. It was adopted by both the House of Commons and Senate and given Royal Assent in the name of protecting Canadians during the coronavirus pandemic. Continue reading

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This Day. Anniversary of the War Measures Act

Forty-nine years ago on October 16, 1970, the federal Liberal government led by Pierre Elliott Trudeau invoked the War Measures Act. Trudeau declared a state of “apprehended insurrection” in response to kidnappings and mailbox bombings taking place in Quebec. The War Measures Act gave the police the power to act without warrants and to detain people indefinitely without charges or trial.

Soldiers on the streets of Montreal, October 1970

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This day. Trudeau invokes the War Measure’s Act

Constituting the fascist state as a legal regime

1970.Troops on Montreal streets.Torstar

Canadian soldiers take over the streets of Montreal following the invocation of the War Measures Act, October 1970.

Forty-eight years ago on October 16, 1970, the federal Liberal government led by Pierre Elliott Trudeau invoked the War Measures Act. Trudeau declared a state of “apprehended insurrection” in response to kidnappings and mailbox bombings taking place in Quebec. The War Measures Act gave the police the power to act without warrants and to detain people indefinitely without charges or trial. Continue reading

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Back to the future all over again – ‘urban winter warfare training’ of Canadian Forces in Laval, Quebec

Canadian soldiers take over the streets of Montreal following the invocation of the War Measures Act, October 1970.

Canadian soldiers take over the streets of Montreal following the invocation of the War Measures Act, October 1970.

Forty-five years after the proclamation of the War Measures Act and the military occupation of Quebec by the Trudeau government, 600 reservists of the Montreal Territorial Battalion Group of the 34 Canadian Brigade Group (34 CBG) are exercising this weekend in “aid of the civil power” “for the purpose of territorial defence in the event of a crisis.” Exercise QUORUM NORDIQUE 2016 (Ex QN 16) is “urban winter warfare training” in Laval.

Reservists in action in an industrial sector of Laval during exercise QUORUM NORDIQUE 2016, January 24, 2016. (Canadian Army)

Reservists in action in an industrial sector of Laval during exercise QUORUM NORDIQUE 2016, January 24, 2016. (Canadian Army)

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