Security expert Christian Leuprecht looks at what Canada needs to do to ensure Omar Khadr does not repeat his terrorist actions on our soil.
U.S. congressman denounces transfer!
By BRYN WEESE , SENIOR WASHINGTON CORRESPONDENT, TORONTO SUN,
WASHINGTON, D.C. -- U.S. congressman Allen West denounced transferring Omar Khadr to Canada as "unconscionable" Thursday, and warned the convicted terrorist and murderer could be back on the battlefield soon.
West, a Republican from Florida who is a rising star in the GOP and also a 20-year army vet who served in both Iraq wars and Afghanistan, has led the charge against sending Khadr back to Canada.
"This is unconscionable and is yet another reason why the Obama administration must be defeated in November," West said in a statement to QMI Agency and Sun News Network Thursday.
"Based upon the reports of recidivism with released Islamic terrorists, we can expect his return to the battlefield."
A year ago, West wrote to his constituents about the plea deal struck by Khadr, which saw him sentenced to eight years in prison for five war crimes, including killing a U.S. Special Forces medic nearly 10 years ago in an Afghan firefight.
The deal allows Khadr to apply to transfer to a Canadian jail after serving one year of his sentence at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, which was completed in October 2011.
"Upon his release to Canada, the maximum time he will serve is seven years," West wrote in a March 2011 newsletter. "What message does that send to our men and women in uniform?
"These non-state, non-military belligerents who do not openly declare nor carry their arms are UNLAWFUL ENEMY COMBATANTS and not deserving of any rights under the Geneva Convention. However, out of our Western civilization benevolence, we treat them humanely and rightly so. Still I will not consent to offering constitutional rights to these creatures of abject evil."
Mark Toner with the U.S. State Department told reporters Wednesday there may not be any more steps required for the Obama administration in order for Khadr's potential transfer to happen, but recent reports have suggested that Congress must be notified of the transfer 30 days before it occurs. In 2010, Khadr admitted to throwing the grenade that killed U.S. Sgt. First Class Christopher Speer in a July 2002 Afghan firefight, as well as making and planting roadside bombs as part of an al-Qaida cell, supporting terrorism, spying and conspiracy.
His victim's widow, Tabitha Speer, is declining media interviews at this time, according to her lawyers.
Khadr's return a ticking clock!
By Kris Sims, Parliamentary Bureau, Toronto Sun
OTTAWA - One of Canada's most reviled citizens has his papers to return to his country of birth, and it's up
Omar Khadr, 25, a convicted terrorist who fought on the side of al-Qaida in Afghanistan is sentenced to serve eight years for murdering American soldier, Special Forces U.S. Sgt. First Class Christopher Speer in 2002.
He has been held in Guantanamo Bay since he was captured in battle.
The federal government and Washington agreed that Khadr is allowed to return to Canada after serving one year in U.S. custody. But analysts say it doesn't have to be an immediate return.
"There is a check list in the International Transfer of Offenders Act, and one of the things Public Safety Minister Vic Toews must do is answer in the affirmative that this prison transfer is not a public danger," said Ezra Levant, Sun News Network host, and author of the book on Khadr The Enemy Within: Terror, Lies and the White Washing of Omar Khadr.
"He's the most dangerous type of individual that you can imagine to take back into your country. He's a convicted war criminal, he's an enemy combatant, he's infected with the virus of radical Jihad, so maybe you don't want him back on your home soil," said retired lieutenant colonel Jeffrey Addicott, former senior legal advisor to the U.S. Army's Special Forces and director of the Center for Terrorism Law at St. Mary's University in Texas. "If I were a Canadian, I would worry he could become a lightning rod for jihadists in Canada, they'd make him some type of hero, a martyr, it's best to just let sleeping dogs lie and leave him where he's at."
He says Canada could say 'no' to the Obama administration and leave Khadr in the U.S. for his full sentence, since they house plenty of Canadian convicts already.
"The U.S. no longer wants him and has asked us to take him," said Julie Carmichael, spokeswoman for Toews. "No final decisions have been made at this time, however any decision on his application will be made in accordance with Canadian law."
The feds have their fingers crossed that Khadr won't return to his terrorist activities.
"We can never guarantee that a citizen won't commit offences in the future," said Citizenship and Immigration Minister Jason Kenney. "At the end of the day Canadians who commit crimes abroad at some point have a right to come back to the country and we certainly hope they don't re-offend.
(dear readers, I have provided these two articles by Bryn and Kris, two writers from the Toronto Sun verbatim as they detail what Canadians are dealing with, from just their perspectives. Only 28, Army Sgt. 1st Class Christopher J. Speer volunteered to go into into harm's way and paid the ultimate price. Chris was a combat medic with a Delta Force team and was mortally wounded during a skirmish on July 27, 2002. Speer, who was not wearing a helmet at the time because the mission called for indigenous clothing, suffered a head wound from a grenade and succumbed to his injuries approximately two weeks later. Speer was awarded the Soldier's Medal for risking his life to save two Afghan children who were trapped in a minefield, on July 21, 2002, two weeks before his death. From Albuquerque, New Mexico. Chris succumbed to his injuries and died on August 7, 2002. It has been a terrible loss for his wife Tabitha as well as their son and daughter. For more information about Chris, check out....
The questions of when will Khadr leave custody, what will be the parameters of his assessment and where will he call home are still to be decided but each, no doubt will be contentious issues for some time to come!)
some final words.......
"I was given the honor of not only knowing Chris, I spent the happiest years of my life with him. We married and had two beautiful children. Chris made all my dreams come true, it was as though he completed me. It has been two years and seven months since his death and I still find it hard to believe that he won't be coming home. Our Daughter is now almost six, she talks about her Daddy constantly, our Son who is three has so much trouble understanding why his Daddy won't be coming home! He asks for his Daddy daily, can he see me? Does he hear me? Can he hold my hand if I reach up to Heaven? Will he come home after he's done in Heaven? My Daughter and I do our best to answer his questions. We miss you so much and love you more than any words could ever possibly express. I can see you in their faces, with each and every smile and silly little smirk. You are so alive in them both, it amazes me! We have a little three year old version of you, he becomes more and more like you every day. They both have your sense of humor and are always smiling. We love you, you are our true HERO! I Love You Today, Tomorrow and Forever!" Tabitha Lee of North Carolina"
Brother Speer. As the world cries for your killer to be free, I cry for you and your family, a hero forgotten by bleeding hearts. Though you may have forgiven, I won't forget you. When your killer, Omar Khadr is freed and returned here as a hero, I, and my brother vets here in Canada, will hold a flag for you, for all to see that we haven't forgotten you. Love, Your Brother Soldiers and Vets of the USAF, USA, and USMC". Jon of Toronto, Canada