Canada's Almost 9/11?

The press is a buzz with a story of an apparent attempted Al Qaeda strike against Canadian targets like the TTC:
"At a news conference earlier in the day, a CSIS official said a series of terrorist attacks plotted against unspecified targets in southern Ontario were 'inspired by Al Qaeda,' adding that the ring of suspects arrested posed a real and serious threat."

"Three tonnes of ammonium nitrate, a commonly used fertilizer used to make explosives, were recovered by police, who say that three times the amount used in the bombing of a government building in Oklahoma that killed 168 people."

A full day has gone by, and so I'm assuming that had this been the press trying to purely sell papers the story would have went away by now.

Whether or not these people had ties to Al Qaeda or they were merely "inspired" makes little difference. Those three tonnes of ammonium nitrate had to come from somewhere. Barring a miraculous coincidence of happenings with Aluminum Nitrate just happening to be in these guys hands, it means that this was one close call Canada just had with terrorism.

My sister travels on the TTC almost every day. Thinking about that one fact makes me cringe the most.

5 comments:

  1. At least some commentators, like this guy at the Toronto Star, have a rudimentary undertsanding of the concept of innocent until proven guilty and recognize the possibility that some of these suspects may have done nothing wrong.

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  2. I'm not saying that ANY or ALL of those suspects are guilty, but that explosive had to come from somewhere barring some miraculous coincidence... If not them, then surely someone else must've been involved. In which case this seems like genuine brush with terror that Canada just had.

    If you have evidence that suggests this isn't really a terrorist plot please post it.

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  3. If you have evidence that suggests this isn't really a terrorist plot please post it.

    Good one, Jason.

    Of course I don't have any evidence.

    What evidence do you have?

    The statements of police, speculations of the media and information leaked here and there along the way in a story that changes and grows everyday?

    I am suggesting a little restraint. That band wagon thing again. Let's wait for the trials before any rush to judgement.

    And I am not saying you judged them. I saw your ? mark disclaimer and noted your carefully chosen words: apparent attempted Al Qaeda strike . A little weak but it is good to see your clarification on the matter.

    I don't see enough words like "alleged" and "suspected" in the headlines to satisfy a reasonable standard of "innocent until proven guilty".

    And Canada did have a 9/11 of sorts, in fact one of the largest terrorist attacks ever before 9/11, and that is the Air-India Flight 182 bombing in 1985.

    329 people died in that terrorist event. 280 of them Canadians. Canada's population is about one tenth of the USA. Very proportional losses compared to 9/11.

    The main difference being that after the Air India 182 bombing Canada did not declare a global war on terror and invade the Punjab. And radical Sihks have not attacked us lately.

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  4. "'If you have evidence that suggests this isn't really a terrorist plot please post it.'

    "Good one, Jason.

    "Of course I don't have any evidence.

    "What evidence do you have?"

    Besides the statements of police, a whole plethora of news articles, how 'bout lets try some tonnnage of explosive.... I'd say that's some valid evidence. Where did the explosive come from Dave? You're not asking yourself that question.

    I was serious about that comment Dave. If you have any links to stories or sources that contradict that this was a terrorist attack - please post it here. The media get's stuff wrong all the time, but it doesn't mean that they are wrong ALL the time.

    "I am suggesting a little restraint. That band wagon thing again. Let's wait for the trials before any rush to judgement."

    "judgement"?... Maybe you could have chosen your words a little more wisely.

    More than a day went by before I posted on these stories, and I figured that that wait would be good in case it was just media frenzy. At first there was no information. I waited until it was confirmed by other media outlets and more wide coverage was shown... I don't call that judgement - I call that being REASONABLE and covering my butt.

    I don't think I'm the ONE judging anyone here Dave.

    "And I am not saying you judged them. I saw your ? mark disclaimer and noted your carefully chosen words: apparent attempted Al Qaeda strike . A little weak but it is good to see your clarification on the matter."

    What a contradiction in terms. First you suggest that we wait "before any rush to judgment" because apparently I don't show enough "restraint."

    Then you say I'm not judging anyone. You need to explain yourself A LOT more clearly Dave. That's just not logical.

    Now maybe those comments were not directed at myself, but you need to be a whole heck of a lot more specific as to who you are talking about. Because it sounds an awful lot like you are silently jabbing me while I don't notice- something I don't go for.

    "I don't see enough words like 'alleged' and 'suspected' in the headlines to satisfy a reasonable standard of 'innocent until proven guilty'."

    Ya and there are plenty of other words I don't see in the media enough either. I see nothing that will change the status quo for the time being. Journalistic integrity? - whatever!

    "And Canada did have a 9/11 of sorts, in fact one of the largest terrorist attacks ever before 9/11, and that is the Air-India Flight 182 bombing in 1985."

    There's a HUGE psychological difference there. Terrorism did strike the US before 9/11, but it was always domestic or small or on foreign soil. 9/11 marked the US's entry into a league of Nations scared by foreign terrorism. The Air-India bombing did not happen over CANADIAN soil.

    If it had, I would suggest that things would have been a whole heck of a lot different just for that simple fact.

    Of course that's not to mention the difference that the bombing does not appear to be an attack that was perpetuated by a global terrorist organization bent on Canada's destruction. It was an attack against Hindu's motivated by a racial conflict on the other side of the world, by most estimations.

    "The main difference being that after the Air India 182 bombing Canada did not declare a global war on terror and invade the Punjab. And radical Sihks have not attacked us lately. "

    No. But if a radical Sihk had come on TV and claimed responsibility, and said that more attacks would follow, are you going to dare to suggest to Hindus that they should just sit back and take it?... I would suggest otherwise.

    PS - When do you consider a news story real? Because it sounds to me, whenever the newstory says anything negative against muslisms you doubt it, but everything else seems hunky dory. Honestly that's my impression of your posts so far.

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  5. Jason - thanks for responding.

    Did you read the Toronto Star link I provided. It answers some of your questions.

    I have asked myself the same questions you have about the fertilizer. When the judicial proceedings begin we will know more. So I am simply reminding you, and myself and everyone, to have a little caution.

    I acknowledged the caution and restraint you showed and continue to show and encourage it. I said you didn't judge them. I don't know how I could have made it clearer.

    "What a contradiction in terms. First you suggest that we wait "before any rush to judgment" because apparently I don't show enough "restraint.""

    No, Jason, it is not a contradiction in terms. I acknowledged that WE wait before judging. I never said you didn't show restraint. Quite the opposite.

    The key words in your response there are "because apparently" .

    Jason, I think that you are being a little too sensitive and imagining attacks in my words when it is simple commentary. If I said "good job showing restraint" would you think I am being sarcastic?

    "Then you say I'm not judging anyone. You need to explain yourself A LOT more clearly Dave. That's just not logical."

    Jason, that's what we are BOTH doing right now. And my statements are logical. Your conjecture and my lack of clarity have led to a small misunderstanding. That's all.

    "Because it sounds an awful lot like you are silently jabbing me while I don't notice- something I don't go for."

    If I jab you ... you will know it. I am a pretty straight forward guy and I think you are a sincere guy too so I don't think we have to jab each other at all, I hope so anyways. Think of this whole exchange as being a friendly tap on the shoulder.

    I acknowledged your efforts specifically. I thought it was pretty clear that the jabs in my words were collective and generalized jabs at the frenzy that does surround this story. And I thought I excluded you from those comments.

    I am sorry if you misunderstood.

    Anyways, "journalistic integrity? - whatever!" I agree with you there. The mainstream media is failing us in many ways. Another topic for another day. That's why we are here on blogs trading news and more importantly; sincere (hopefully) dialogue and commentary.

    I agree when you say there was a huge psychological difference between the Air India bombing and 9/11. I was commenting on the proportion of casualties and the response. Your comments about terrorism on 'our soil' are well taken and the motivation is an important factor. It did make, or make more real, a fear that wasn't there before.

    By the way, I live in the Lower Mainland area of BC. Air India happened in my backyard even if the plane didn't blow up there. There is a large population of East Indians in my area. I was in high school when the bombing occurred and believe me I have seen enough ugliness and racism and demonization of a group of innocent people simply because of the colour of their skin or becasue they wear a turban.

    As for the terrorists who actually committed the bombing I hope they rot in jail and then in hell.

    Your response to my comment on Canada's response to the Air India bombing :

    "No. But if a radical Sihk had come on TV and claimed responsibility, and said that more attacks would follow, are you going to dare to suggest to Hindus that they should just sit back and take it?... I would suggest otherwise."

    Hmm ... we have discussed pacifism and 'turning the other cheek' a bit before. I might suggest they sit back and take it, as long as they possibly can. If they respond in kind haven't they possibly become the very thing they hate? Another topic for another day.

    "PS - When do you consider a news story real? Because it sounds to me, whenever the newstory says anything negative against muslisms you doubt it, "

    A news story is real but sometimes they are proven false. It's that simple. Just because it is a news story does not make it true.

    As for doubting negative stories about muslims. Let's take the "iran yellow star" story as a prime example of that very doubt being justified.

    And as for the current story, I don't know if every suspect is guilty or innocent, and will hold my judgement in abeyance until the facts come out in the trial. If these guys are guilty I hope they have the book thrown at them, at this point it sure looks like someone is guilty, and I wait for justice to be served.

    "but everything else seems hunky dory. Honestly that's my impression of your posts so far."

    Everthing else? seems hunky dory?

    You need to explain yourself A LOT more clearly Dave.

    Take your own advice, Jason. There that was a little jab. Nah ... more of a friendly push.

    Hopefully I have corrected your impressions of my posts so far.

    PS - did you get the science fiction short story I emailed you?

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