In 2007 Canada experienced a fundamental shift in the focus of our Intelligence Services, a shift that is of interest to every Canadian. It was in this, and the following years while planning for the G-20 summit and Olympic Games that the baleful eye of the security services swung decisively in the direction of Canadian Citizens involved in Social action and Environmental groups.
This fact is attested to in their internal documents generated by ITAC, or The Integrated Terrorism Unit. For use by JIG’s orJoint Intelligence Groups and and the Integrated Security Units that include the military and private companies. According to a paper entitled ” Making up Terror Identities : security intelligence, Canada’s Integrated Threat Assessment Centre and social movement suppression” written by University of Winnipeg Criminology Professor Kevin Walby and Jeffrey Monaghan of Queens University
‘The June 2007 internal CSIS report was titled ‘Multi Issue Militancy’. However, that category quickly and consistently became ‘extremism’( the term most Canadians use is activist) in subsequent reports. The June 2007 internal CSIS report states: “As the Service positions itself for numerous events that could become targets of MIE groups, it is important that everyone be kept aware of the developments”…In the following months, a more specific definition of an MIE emerges. ITAC produces a number of references to groups that encompass this definition. One note from November 2008 states they have‘included, among other things, opposition to US foreign policy, including the ‘Global War on Terror’, various Third World and regional causes, as well as animal rights, anti-globalization’. In some instances, the category MIE is directly associated with the global justice movement.
“The centralization of intelligence under the ISU-JIG (and later ITAC) in Canada resembles Department of Homeland Security ‘fusion centres’ in the United States, which coordinate data-sharing among state and local police, intelligence agencies and private companies. Fusion centres involve both centralization and extension of intelligence practices: coordination is concentrated in a few, new agencies, but intelligence gathering responsibilities are extended to local and regional police who never before participated in such networks ”. – Walby-Monaghan
This is the sort of Orwellian phrases our taxpayer funded security services are using to describe us in their internal communications and the language they use when going before politicians. Any citizen active with either a social action or environmental group is called a ”multi issue extremist”, and peaceful protests like banner drops, or friendly family marches are referred to as “non- violent attack strategies”
This language is used to present their case to politicians for increasing their budgets and powers. And really that is what a lot of this is motivated by not some deep-seated fear in Ottawa that protesters will storm the halls of power but rather the crass cravings for money and respect by our security services and police forces.
It is dangerous to underestimate the effect of this mentality in a business where the amount of respect you get, is contingent on the size of the threat the Nation faces. If you don’t spend your whole budget you’ll get less next year. I have been in this environment as a member of the Canadian Army. I have watched the machine synthesize new threats to justify its existence and plead for more resources. Local Police Forces are receiving millions of dollars in new militarized equipment and a sense of importance being on the National security scene
In tracing this trend backwards we find that in 2002 one year after the 911 event in the US. Gilles Michaud, a hard charging young RCMP Inspector finishes the FBI anti-terrorism course at Quantico Virginia. He returns to Canada and sets up the Integrated National Security Enforcement Teams in major Canadian cities.
This in essence provides the RCMP a back door re-entry into the intelligence business that they were summarily dismissed from after the McDonald and Keeble Royal commissions of the 1970s.
The RCMP were fired from domestic intelligence essentially because they had been, among other things, impersonating the FLQ , burning barns and writing phoney manifestos. All of this was to ensure thier national security budgets kept increasing.
It has recently come to light that the RCMP were responsible for at least one of a series of pipeline bombings in northern B.C. in 2008-2009, they used this excuse to falsely arrest Wiebo Ludwig a farmer opposed to oil development, and at the same time massively increase the INSET resources in Alberta. Old habits die hard one supposes.
Michaud, the good schoolboy, models these teams on the US integration model , in short there is now a permanent and seamless bureaucratic structure integrating Canadian Security Inteligence Service Communication Security Establishment, RCMP, Canadian Border Services, Canadian Forces Intelligence, and JTF2( Canada’s Special Forces), and your local Police department.
In the aftermath of 911, and while our soldiers fought in Afghanistan, money rained down upon the security services. Enough to build a large bureaucratic life form which for the next ten years chased phantom terrorists around the globe. But by 2007-8 the money was drying up like the phantom threat it was thrown at. At a time of massive spending cuts fuelled by the global bank robbery of 2008. A new enemy was needed.
Well ladies and gentlemen we are it. And not the first time in Canadian history. During the 1950’s and right up until the 80’s the RCMP ran “Operation PROFUNC” in which they, along with the Canadian forces, planned to preventatively, arrest up to 40 thousand Canadians and their families and put them in concentration camps.
That would bring us to 2010, and who is the RCMP’s INSET team in Montréal going after. A little known Quebec student association: the Àsse. The Àsse members who were arrested after staging a sit-in the offices of the Minister of Finance and the Minister of education,they were arrested in heavily armed police operations, a month after the events and from the “discovery“ that the crown had to turn over, they were the targets of massive and all encompassing surveillance, months before the protests. Now, if the RCMP were acting against the student movement, in Quebec two years before the strike in 2012 is it reasonable to believe they had no part in suppressing it. Is the brutal police response being directed from Québec city? The likely answer is no. It is far more likely that the RCMP has been working closely with the SPVM and in fact could be helping to co-ordinate the brutal response to the generally peaceful citizens of Montréal The use of a city bylaw to justify the use of brutal militarized police tactics is a model ready for export to any other Canadian city.
After the events in Ottawa, we have new draconian legislation on the books , and more on the way. The RCMP publicly state that those opposed to our current energy extraction model are the single greatest threat to our National Security. We had better prepare ourselves to have the full weight of the government security apparatus aimed squarely at us as citizens.
It is already happening as there have been many reports over the last few years of the RCMP and CSIS meeting directly with energy company executives. Also prominent on the list are aboriginal groups. When the Conservatives called for a “whole of Government response” to the Idle no More movement, they had I.N.S.E.T in mind . This operation had heavy participation from the Canadian Forces Intelligence and Special Forces Command or SOFCOM.
Mohawk filmmaker Clifton Nicholas and myself arrived in Rexton N.B. a week after the confrontation between Mk’mac warriors from Elsipogtog and RCMP October 17th 2013. We have definite questions about the identity of some of the “RCMP” officers that performed the brutal raid. We found dozens of RCMP uniform bags in the wood line behind where the raid took place, and Canadian Forces Ration packs either the RCMP failed get dressed before work or needed to dress someone in RCMP uniforms. Having served Ten years in the Canadian Forces including seeing combat as an infantryman I can say that alot of the gentlemen with the assault rifles moved more like soldiers than policemen.
All this to enforce the rights of a US energy Company against Peaceful Native protesters One can also look to the recent events in Burnaby BC where the RCMP enforced a faulty order to protect a drilling company from Texas. We the citizens are the perceived threat , the resource companies their client, that is obvious.
We had better act quickly and decisively in this country to rein in our security services and return local police to enforcing the criminal code. This is their vital function in maintaining social peace in our societies. Their performance of this role is based on the trust of the population they mean to police. I know from direct experience that very few young people will call or co-operate with police in any way because of their experiences with political repression and profiling on the streets. This is hugely dangerous. We only have to look at the United States to see what happens when police loose the faith of civil society. We had better all start standing up for our rights here with at least as much organization and gusto as we show for the rights of satirical cartoonists in France or we will all end up in a place few of us will recognize.