Tories Playing Politics With Khadr

Responding to former prime minister Paul Martin’s call on Sunday’s edition of CTV’s Question Period that Canada should lobby to repatriate Omar Khadr, Stephen Harper’s new spokeshack, former CRFA lobbyist Kory Teneycke, had this to say:

“This is the process the Liberals chose, and we’re sticking with it,” Mr. Teneycke said in an interview Sunday. Accusing the opposition of ‘playing politics,’ he said recent public revelations about the Khadr file should have been known to the previous government. ‘This information was in their hands when they made these decisions,’ he said.”

Aside from the obvious fact that it’s Teneycke who’s actually “playing politics” here (for reasons clearly described by Impolitical), the assertion that “recent public revelations… should have been known” to the Liberals or that all the relevant facts surrounding Khadr’s case and the conditions of his detention were “in their hands” when the Liberals “chose” the process by which he will be tried before a military commission is nothing short of outright mendacity.

As pointed out by Canadian Cynic, revelations recently made public simply were not the sort of information that could possibly have been known to the previous government.

Regarding the “process” itself, the legal framework for the first military tribunal wasn’t formulated by the Bush administration until late 2005 and formal charges against Khadr weren’t even filed until November 2005 (one month before the election). It would be interesting to know how Teneycke thinks that the Liberal government should have known that the first tribunal process would eventually be struck down by the Supreme Court of the United States as being unconstitutional given this decision was made in June of 2006, six months after the Liberals were out of office. Despite what Teneycke would have people believe, the “legal process” now in effect at Guantanamo has absolutely nothing to do with the Liberals.

21 Replies to “Tories Playing Politics With Khadr”

  1. Funny how they aren’t sticking to that other process the Liberals chose – Kyoto.

    But I guess pretending you can’t do any better than the previous government that tossed out for corruption is the high water mark of Conservative pride these days….

  2. Or, as Impolitical pointed out, the Kelowna Accord.

    I mean, really. That had to be the most laughably feeble argument ever.

  3. The Liberals were wrong. They perpetrated an injustice by allowing a child, captured in a firefight with Amercian soldiers, to be taken to and held at Gitmo.

    The Conservatives are adding to that injustice by allowing that situation to continue despite all that has passed since Mr. Khadr’s initial capture.

    If the “Chess Master” had any scruples he would stop hiding behind the initial injustice begin to negotiate his return.

  4. I don’t fully excuse the Liberals for their acquiescence prior to 2006, however we also know a lot more things now that we didn’t then when the whole affair was still largely shrouded in secrecy. Much of that has since been peeled away as the Bush administration’s actions and the nature of the “sham” military tribunals have been subjected to increasing scrutiny.

  5. An American soldier walks into an area he thought was safe. Suddenly there is a loud bang. Shrapnel pierces his body. He collapses. His breathing becomes labored. He gasps for air. He is bleeding profusely. Then, his chest heaves and he breathes his last breath. Ah but who gives a shit. He’s just an American soldier. The real victim is this poor 15 year old boy. A “child soldier”. This poor misunderstood individual. Forget about the fact his dad died fighting Americans. Forget about the fact his entire family thinks the world of Bin Laden. No, the individual to feel sorry for is this young “child soldier”.

    Do you even know who this American was? You sure know the name of Omar Khadr.

    Do you even care who this soldier was? You sure care about Omar Khadr.

  6. KEvron and Omar . . .

    Yep. Just what I thought. Anybody who doesn’t share your high and mighty “better than thou” ideals can go ahead and die.

    And this is a party that accepts everybody?

    Yeah . . . right.

  7. it was said…”As pointed out by Canadian Cynic, revelations recently made public simply were not the sort of information that could possibly have been known to the previous government”….

    awww like come on.The whole world was condemning Gitmo when it was opened.The Liberals went along with the program,this despite all the concerns in regards to Human & civil rights.
    The bottom line is like Paul Wells said…”“The Liberals let this happen and the Conservatives refuse to bring it to an end.”….

  8. I think there is a qualitative difference between the Liberals ineptness at protecting Canadians abroad, and the Conservatives’ attitude.

    The Tories take glee in pissing off whoever is pissed off.

    The Liberals would just be cynical, without the glee…

  9. Bud — Sgt. Christopher Speer.

    I’m not playing the “child soldier” sympathy card here, so I don’t know why you feel it necessary to make it seem like anyone who advocates repatriation and a fair trial is being callous and insensitive to the American soldier that was killed in that firefight.

  10. RT,

    Not one of you most scrupulous posts; either for the point of accuracy or from a position of balance.

    You said:

    “…Aside from the obvious fact that it’s Teneycke who’s actually “playing politics” here…”

    followed by:

    “…revelations recently made public simply were not the sort of information that could possibly have been known to the previous government. ”

    The whole package is like swiss cheese. Whose playing politics here? Rae for insisting we get young Khadr home, Dion for the same bombast, or Martin for saying we were right then and right now. It’s all crap. The LPC is strictly playing politics, otherwise how can they flip their position so effortlessly? And this fiction that in 2005 they didn’t know about how he was being treated is either another big lie or huge incompetence. At least the CPC can properly claim there is NO evidence of Khadr’s mistreatment since they have been on watch.

    I don’t defend the CPC media soundbite but that doesn’t make them wrong. After many eyars, Omar Khadr is finally a few months away from his trial and people are rallying to bring him home. I hope all you of like minds link arms around Parliament Hill and sing “we shall overcome”. Make sure Elmasry is with you since you are keeping some interesting company here.

    Am I a racist too?

    Khadr is where he should be. After his verdict we can then decide on follow-up actions, until then all of this posting is partisan hackery at its worst.

  11. RT , assuming he is returned to Canada , should the young offenders act apply ?

  12. Scott,

    What if young Joey Smith (15) from Hamilton goes to Afghansitan to kill NATO troops, and (allegedly) kills a Canadian soldier with a grenade?

    Should we bring him back home, pat him on the head and give him some counselling? Or should he be tried as an adult?

    Why don’t you select an answer.

  13. Late…
    Tomm, “who” say anything about a “pat on the head”? You are projecting again…

  14. “Anybody who doesn’t share your high and mighty “better than thou” ideals can go ahead and die. “

    yep.

    “And this is a party that accepts everybody?”

    nope.

    KEvron

  15. “Forget about the fact his dad died fighting Americans. Forget about the fact his entire family thinks the world of Bin Laden.”

    So the sins of the father are visited upon the son? The son should be held to account for the attitude of the other family members?

    Gawd, the Bible is a book full of immoral crazy and dangerously authoritarian ideas, but even it says we shouldn’t do this.

    Here’s and idea Bud, how about we apply the law, m’kay?

    First, get enough evidence to prove that Khadr actually did what he is being accused of. His lawyer seems to have found a fair amount to indicate he didn’t. But that’s what defense lawyers do. How about that evidence is then presented at a fair trial, with cross-examination and rules of evidence – no evidence from torture or duress, no hearsay etc. You know, the minimum standard you would expect if you were accused of a serious crime.

    And then, after the trial is over, deal with him. If he is guilty, lock him up. If he is not, let him go.

    You realize that even in the remote possibility that he is found innocent by the Military Commissions Tribunal, he can still be imprisoned merely because Bush says to keep him?

    Nothing like defending liberty.

    “Should we bring him back home, pat him on the head and give him some counselling? Or should he be tried as an adult?”

    Tomm that’s a hell of a false dichotomy. How about we do what we do with other Canadians – charge him (if there is sufficient evidence) and then let the Crown argue for a transfer to adult court. Then have that fair trial I talked about.

    Afterward, if he is found guilty, sentence him to whatever (25 to life) and offer him that counseling. If he is found not guilty, offer him counseling to get over the trauma of being locked up in a gulag for 6 years.

    Both Bud and Tomm are overlooking the possibility that Khadr really is innocent and didn’t do this, that he happened to be there when the firefight broke out and was captured.

    But then, determining that is why we have trials, right?

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s