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The Khadr fiasco

Dear Editor,

I was watching the ESPYs last night. They gave an award to an American soldier, Israel Del Toro, who had been severely wounded by an IED. He had third degree burns over 80 per cent of his body. He was given a very low chance of survival. He was permanently maimed, losing the fingers on his hands and was left with a face that was horribly scared. He ultimately survived but will be forever changed. This same story could be told of hundreds of Canadian and American soldiers.

Ralph Goodale tried to blame the Khadr fiasco on the Harper government by saying, “the Harper government refused to repatriate Mr. Khadr or otherwise resolve the matter. They could have but didn’t.”

But here are the facts:

  • Khadr was captured on the battlefield in Afghanistan when John Chretien was PM.
  • He was seriously wounded and sent to a hospital where he recovered.
  • He was then sent to Guantanamo, but Chretien made no effort to repatriate him. He was repatriated under the Harper Government.
  • Before all this, John Chretien sought the release of his father from a Pakistani prison where he was being held under suspicion of terrorism. He was then released.
  • Khadr senior returned to Canada, then took his family back to Pakistan where they began terrorist training under the Taliban.
  • They joined terrorists in Afghanistan where they started fighting against allied forces.
  • It was under the Chretien government that Omar Khadr was interrogated by Canadians and Americans and Chretien didn’t want him back.

Omar Khadr should be treated as a terrorist. He does not deserve any compensation. Whatever pain he suffered pales in comparison to what our soldiers suffered and are suffering to this day. No court order requires the government to pay him. And it has the moral obligation to fight any court order that does. He deserves to be in prison and he deserves to be put on trial for treason.

 

Joe Prochazka