Wake-up call

How many credible terror plots have been halted in Canada?

Amid the celebrations and fireworks Monday, Victoria suddenly found itself in the rarefied club of Canadian cities targeted for a high-profile terrorist attack.

If the suspects had slipped under the radar and detonated pressure-cooker bombs outside the legislature during Canada Day celebrations, it could have been the worst terrorist attack in history on Canadian soil.

Instead, the B.C. RCMP were able to announce two arrests – John Nuttall, a Surrey man (and former Victoria resident) with a significant criminal rap sheet, and Amanda Korody, his partner. RCMP assert both of these Canadian born-and-raised suspects were “self-radicalized” by al-Qaida influence.

Nuttall has been in and out of Victoria’s courts regularly for assaults, robberies, mischief and possessing weapons. In media articles, he was described as a former drug addict and a violent enforcer when it came to collecting drug debts. He’s also described as a recent convert to Islam.

Whether this pair tried to copycat the pressure-cooker Boston bombings, or another reason, the fact their alleged plot was identified, infiltrated and hijacked by RCMP agents is a testament to why Canada needs intelligence agencies.

Organizations like the Canadian Security Intelligence Service (CSIS), which tipped off the provincial RCMP to the plot, and RCMP anti-terrorism departments, almost always operate behind the scenes to ferret out domestic terrorism.

It’s hard to know how many credible terror plots have been halted in Canada. Beyond oil pipeline bombings in the past, police and intelligence agencies have quashed an alleged plot to blow up a Via passenger train between Toronto and New York by two foreign men who supposedly received guidance from al-Qaida agents; and the so-called “Toronto 18” (11 were convicted), a group of young Muslim men who plotted to blow up targets across southern Ontario with fertilizer bombs.

The foiled Victoria bombing can be seen as a wake-up call to Canadians that terrorism is a reality in this country, and as analysts have predicted, attacks on civilians are not an “if” but a “when.”

This is also an opportunity for a national conversation on the bounds of domestic surveillance – what will people tolerate to ensure agencies have the resources to keep Canadians safe?

– Black Press

Just Posted

Flood advisory: Watching the rising Fraser

Sandbags available for residents of Wharf Street in Maple Ridge

Revamped patio part of Maple Ridge’s downtown plan

Goal is to make the downtown a lively place

Maple Ridge landmark properties up for sale

On either side of Lougheed Highway at entrance to downtown

Tyler O’Neill homers in three straight games

Slugger from Maple Ridge back in the Majors

Studying addiction and mental health in the elderly

Maple Ridge masters student co-authors papers

Maple Ridge tech company will power Uber Elevate

Moli and Uber announce RD partnership

Woman’s death near Tofino prompts warning about ‘unpredictable’ ocean

Ann Wittenberg was visiting Tofino for her daughter Victoria Emon’s wedding

B.C. man facing deportation says terror accusation left him traumatized

Othman Hamdan was acquitted of terrorism-related charges by a B.C. Supreme Court judge in September

Will Taylor Swift’s high concert ticket prices stop scalpers?

Move by artist comes as B.C. looks to how to regulate scalpers and bots reselling concert tickets

36 fires sparked May long weekend, most due to lightning: BC Wildfire

As warmer weather nears, chief fire officer Kevin Skrepnek says too soon to forecast summer

Ariana Grande sends message of hope on anniversary of Manchester bombing

Prince William joins survivors and emergency workers for remembrance service

Fraser River “vulnerable” to any additional inflows: River Forecast Centre

Two dairy farms have already been relocated from evacuated areas

Pipeline more important than premiers meeting: Notley

“Canada has to work for all Canadians, that’s why we’re fighting for the pipeline”

Canadian government spending tens of millions on Facebook ads

From January 2016 to March 2018, feds spent more than $24.4 million on Facebook and Instagram ads

Most Read