In my edited shortened speech below, I addressed a deep philosophical problem of Liberals in Parliament, which the nation was reminded of, because of the horror of the World Trade Centre attack. Now in 2017, the recent waves of “surprise arrivals” that have been swamping our borders, indicates that the old misplaced Liberal mindset has not improved, despite the lessons that could have been learned down through the years. In part, read my analysis from that time in 2001, when Canada was feeling very raw and bruised. Then compare, to understand that there has been no improvement in the federal Liberal mindset about protecting Canada and securing our borders.
37TH PARLIAMENT, 1ST SESSION EDITED HANSARD • NUMBER 79
Monday, September 17, 2001
Mr. Paul Forseth (New Westminster—Coquitlam—Burnaby, Canadian Alliance):
Mr. Speaker, I rise today on behalf of my constituents of New Westminster--Coquitlam--Burnaby and all freedom loving people to extend the deepest heart felt condolences to the many Americans, Canadians, British and others who are direct or indirect victims.
I concur with the motion before the House that states:
That this House express its sorrow and horror at the senseless and vicious attack on the United States of America on September 11, 2001;
That it express its heartfelt condolences to the families of the victims and to the American people;
That it reaffirm its commitment to the humane values of a free and democratic society and its determination to bring to justice the perpetrators of this attack on these values and to defend civilization from any future terrorist attacks.
Freedom will always have to be defended from senseless acts of terrorism or in the face of the complacent. As Canadians watched in horror and tried to understand the incomprehensible, I find it difficult not to think of the possible Canadian connection. Indications may or may not be valid but regardless, the fact that Canadian law and administration continues to allow non-Canadians with terrorist ties to reside in Canada is just not acceptable. Given the weakness of our current procedures, we can only say that we are lucky so far, that crime has not been worse.
It is time for the government to get real, stop its denials, stop the defence of name calling put downs against the official opposition and just re-allocate personnel resourcing. Most countries that accept refugees accept about 10% to 15% of claims but we are so inadequate in our background checks that we accept about 50% or even more. It is no surprise then that CSIS says that most of the world's terrorist groups have established themselves in Canada for operations. The Canadian Security Intelligence Service has a mandate to monitor threats to Canada. On June 12, it said:
Terrorism in the years ahead is expected to become more violent, indiscriminate and unpredictable...There will likely be terrorist attacks whose sole aim would be to incite terror itself...Canada a potential venue, for terrorists attacks.
The auditor general gave another wake up call in April 2000 saying:
Visa officers feel they are not only going against their own values, but also making decisions that could carry risks that are too high, and that could entail significant cost for Canadian society.
In response, the government remained complacent and thereby, by definition, perhaps complicit. Some people coming into Canada found that the way the system is presently designed it allows them to perform their own malevolent goals. Without sufficient incentive to comply with removal (deportation) orders or reporting conditions, arrivals will continue to stay on and become lost in the system. People smugglers bring their victims with little fear of prosecution.
Sadly, by the turn of events this week, we are reminded again of the need for the systems to act more promptly and with much greater care for the public safety. The courage to act requires a much better allocation of human and financial resources and the best available information systems for protection and enforcement. Without these pragmatics, the best speeches by the government today will never be effective or save us from any tragedy.
Dealing with the volume of arrivals and sorting them out, it is a very intensive people business. To more effectively cope with these realities, it is reasonable to do two things. Properly resource the agencies whose practitioners at the line level have been begging for relief. Give the needed trained personnel and also harden the entry points to reduce the swamping of our system.
One of the flaws in Canadian politics is the traditional difficulty in just mentioning immigration, refugees, border controls and so on. The censorship practised by the finger pointers and name callers against my party hurts the whole country. Nevertheless, I will not relent but I will say that in our party we firmly believe that the government must give account for the way security programs are met.
September 11, 2001, will be remembered forever. The attack upon the United States changes how we think of the world. Civilization has been attacked and freedom everywhere has been hurt. Our prayers will continue with the victims and their families.
I end my remarks by saying that we in the Official Opposition of the Canadian Parliament offer our Prime Minister assistance to do what we can, for this week's tragedy is of international scope. I have expressed our concern and support to the U.S. embassy, and we send our condolences to the American people. I am also mindful that there are Canadians and other nationalities who perished in the attack. While our hearts are broken in this time of grief, I will do my duty to serve to protect what is good and fulfil my part to preserve peace and order.
Technology and the machines of war can neither detect nor eradicate the hatred in the heart of a radical. Anyone willing to commit suicide as a martyr for their evil idea, is potentially more dangerous than the most sophisticated weaponry.
We have looked into the face of evil. It is an idea clothed in pride. It will be overcome by revelation clothed in love. Our only long-term hope for peace and an end to fanaticism, are changed hearts through faith in the redemptive love of God.