THE Canadian Security Intelligence Service says in its 2011–2013 Public Report states that terrorism emanating from Al-Qaeda-inspired extremism remains a serious threat in Canada.
It adds: “Despite recent successful operations targeting Al-Qaeda core, the Service continues to see support for AQ causes in Canada. Of particular significance is the … investigation into an alleged Al-Qaeda-linked plot to attack a train in Southern Ontario, which led to the arrest of two individuals in April 2013.”
But it also notes that although the Al-Qaeda-inspired extremism seems to be the most visible terrorist threat, “historically terrorism in Canada has been committed in the name of a variety of ideologies.”
It names three main ways in which terrorism threatens Canadians:
* “Terrorists continue to plot direct attacks against Canada and its allies at home and abroad with the aim of causing death and disruption.”
* “Terrorists seek to conduct activities on Canadian territory to support terrorism globally (such as fundraising to support attacks and militant groups).”
* “Terrorist supporters seek to radicalize individuals within Canada, some of whom may travel overseas for terrorist training or to engage in terrorism abroad. These individuals endanger their lives and pose a risk to the countries to which they have travelled. Further, should they return to Canada, it is uncertain to what ends these individuals may put their training. There is concern it may include attempting to radicalize others, or train individuals in terrorist methods.”
In its summary of the key threats to Canada between April 2011–April 2013, it states: “The period between April 2011–April 2013 saw a considerable evolution in the domestic and international terrorist threat as well as a number of significant events. Within Canada, there were high-profile incidents of Canadians travelling abroad to engage in terrorist activities, as well as the notable arrests for an alleged terrorist plot to be carried out on Canadian soil. In the United States, terror attacks at the April 2013 Boston Marathon demonstrated the ongoing threat to the West from homegrown violent extremism.”
ON “radicalization,” the report states: “The radicalization of Canadians towards violent extremism continues to be a significant concern to Canadian national security. Essentially, radicalization is the process whereby individuals move from holding moderate, mainstream beliefs towards adopting extremist political or religious ideologies. Individuals who become radicalized may support or become involved in violent extremism. Activities can range from attack planning against Canadian targets, sending money or resources to support violent extremist groups, and / or influencing others (particularly youth) towards adopting radical ideologies. Radicalized individuals may also seek to travel abroad for terrorist training or to engage in fighting. Such individuals can pose very serious threats to the security of Canada. Not only are they now seasoned fighters who harness the ability to conduct attacks here, but they may also serve in influencing others.
“The participation of two young Canadians in an attack on an Algerian petroleum facility in January 2013 where up to 60 individuals died, as well as the widely-reported travel of two other young Canadians to North Africa, allegedly for extremist purposes, is indicative of this trend and highlights the challenge posed by the travel of radicalized individuals for terrorist purposes.
“In order to generate a better understanding of the phenomenon, the Service conducts research on radicalization in Canada. CSIS has found that for those influenced by the AQ narrative, violent extremists have come from varied social and age levels, are spread widely across the educational spectrum and can appear fully integrated into society, making detection especially difficult.”
It also notes: “A number of Somali-Canadians have travelled to Somalia for terrorist training and to engage in violent jihad. Some of these individuals have reportedly been killed. In April 2013, a Canadian is reported to have taken part in the deadly attacks on Mogadishu’s Benadir Courts which killed numerous individuals. For those who survive, there are concerns over the ends to which they may put their training. In October 2011 a Somali-American suicide bomber released an audiotape specifically calling upon “brothers and sisters” to engage in violent jihad in Canada. In April 2013, the Canadian government passed legislation which makes it illegal to leave Canada for the purpose of committing terrorism.”
ON “Domestic and Multi-Issue Extremism,” the report states: “Other forms of violence, motivated by ideology or political cause, also threaten Canadian national security. Domestic extremists in Canada are capable of orchestrating acts of serious violence. The 2010 firebombing of a Royal Bank branch in Ottawa, and the bombing of a military recruiting centre in Trois-Rivières, Quebec are just a few examples. Grievances harboured by those who oppose issues such as the perceived dehumanizing effects of capitalism are likely to continue and may trigger additional acts of serious violence.
“Right-wing extremism has not been as significant a problem in Canada in recent years. Those who hold such extremist views have tended to be isolated and ineffective figures. However, the July 2011 bombing and shooting rampage in Norway, which killed 77 people, showed that even a single individual can successfully execute mass-casualty terrorism.”
– ASIAN JOURNAL REPORT