Proceedings of the Special Senate Committee on
Issue 4 - Evidence
OTTAWA, Monday, June 21, 2010
The Special Senate Committee on Anti-terrorism met this day at 1 p.m. to
examine matters relating to anti-terrorism (topic: current status of terrorism:
the Canadian threat environment).
Senator Hugh Segal (Chair) in the chair.
The Chair: Honourable senators, this is the fifth meeting of the
Special Senate Committee on Anti-terrorism of this session of this Parliament. I
can report that Bill S-7 was given second reading by the chamber last week. We
will have the minister and his officials as witnesses next Monday to review the
bill and begin putting a series of questions to them about the content of the
bill. Many of the questions were eloquently raised by Senator Furey in his
speech at second reading.
Today, we will continue analyzing how the terrorist threat has changed in
Canada over the last five years and how our security forces have adapted to deal
with those changes.
We are fortunate to have three expert witnesses with us today. Martin Rudner
is a Professor Emeritus at Carleton University's Norman Paterson School of
International Affairs. In many ways, he is the intellectual godfather of
security studies here in Canada. He has written several books and articles on
terrorism, security and intelligence. He has also contributed to many
presentations on those subjects, including "Nature of the Security Threat'' for
the Department of Justice of Canada, the training program on the appointment of
special advocates in 2008; and "Protecting Canada's Critical National
Infrastructure Against Terrorism,'' a joint presentation for the Department of
Foreign Affairs and International Trade, the Department of Justice Canada and
the Israel Embassy in 2009. He also testified before the committee in 2005 on
the threat environment.
Professor Tom Quiggin spent 15 years in the Armed Forces, including five
years on the operational side and 10 years in the intelligence branch. This
service has included service to the Crown on the ground during the war in Bosnia
and Croatia, as well as work in Russia, Belarus, Poland, Ukraine, Albania and
many other countries. He has worked in an intelligence capacity for a number of
government organizations, including the Privy Council Office, Citizenship and
Immigration Canada in war crimes intelligence, Canada Border Services Agency,
the Canada Revenue Agency, and the Department of Justice Canada. He has worked
for the International War Crimes Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia and provided
intelligence and evidence training for the defence lawyers who were part of the
Guantanamo Bay Military Commissions. He is also a researcher at the Nanyang
Technological University for the Singapore government's advanced research
project into risk assessment and horizon scanning.
Professor Steve Hutchinson has been with the Department of Criminology at the
University of Ottawa since January 2008. His dissertation on security matters
was completed at Carleton University, Ottawa, under the direction of Dr. Pat
O'Malley, Canada Research Chair in Criminology and Criminal Justice. His areas
of research focus include national security and intelligence, terrorism and
organized crime, including proceeds of crime, laws and money laundering;
policing, both public and private; contemporary innovations in criminal justice
policy; and, for our purposes, security and risk theories.
Thank you, gentlemen, for making time in your schedules to help us through
our deliberations. I will call on Mr. Rudner to start. We will ask you to stay
within 10 minutes for your opening statements, so that members will have ample
opportunity to pose their questions.
Martin Rudner, Distinguished Research Professor Emeritus, Carleton
University, as an individual: It is an honour and a privilege to appear
before the Special Senate Committee on Anti-terrorism.
As you suggest, I will begin my remarks by focusing on the evolution of
terrorism over recent decades. I will begin by referring to a concept of the
terrorism cycle. For many people, "terrorism'' constitutes the attacks, blasts,
firings and explosions that cause human loss of life and physical damage.
However, terrorism consists of a sequence of activities and actions that
culminate in the attack.
This concept was originally developed for the Commission of Inquiry into the
Investigation of the Bombing of Air India Flight 182 and was included in my
research report for the final report of that commission. It was cited
extensively by Mr. Justice Major. I will summarize the concept here before this
The terrorism cycle consists of a sequence of actions and activities,
logically commencing with: strategic planning by terrorists; the recruitment of
activists and operatives; their training as cadres and militants for the
terrorist organizations; terrorist fundraising and money transfers; and the
procurement of materiel logistics, such as weapons, explosives, falsified
passports and other requirements for the terrorist mission.
There is also, importantly, intelligence and infiltration of the institutions
of targeted countries. For example, we know that al Qaeda has made efforts to
infiltrate organizations such as the Metropolitan Police in the United Kingdom,
the British security service; and the security authorities of the Netherlands,
Denmark and the United States. They have a professional terrorist intelligence
We also know that they engage in communications through the Internet and
various other media of messaging. We know that they engage in propaganda,
education and indoctrination. We know they create an infrastructure of safe
houses and sleeper cells. They undertake tactical preparations for attacks and
engage in reconnaissance on targets. Then they engage in the assaults on
Each of these activities is a terrorist activity and each constitutes an
offence under terrorism legislation in democracies, including Canada. It is
important for the committee to have a perspective of a terrorism cycle to
address legislative responses to the terrorist threat.
How does this concept act out in terms of al Qaeda? I think we can identify
four waves of international militant jihadist terrorism that waves the flag of
It began with the Afghan Arabs, located mainly in Afghanistan during the
Taliban period, proclaiming jihad against the West and the United States, and
against Muslim societies which, in their view, did not conform to their dictates
of Islam. They engaged in terrorist attacks on targets in Europe, the Middle
East and the 9/11 attacks against the United States.
There was a second wave that followed upon the Muslim countries' own
self-defence against terrorism. These were countries like Egypt; even Syria,
which is a Baathist, socialist country; Algeria; Morocco; and others.
Militants fled to sanctuaries in the West — Western Europe, the United
Kingdom, and even North America, which I referred to in my published work as
Takfir wa al-Hijra. That notion, coming from the legacy of the prophet Mohammed
himself, is of cutting oneself off from infidel societies and going into exile.
Mohammed went from Mecca to Medina, there reorganizing and rebuilding for the
We had a range of exiles fleeing the Arab and Muslim worlds to democracies
where they engaged in two activities in the terrorism cycle; first and foremost,
propaganda and agitation to seek to overthrow the regimes in the Muslim world,
which they regarded as apostate; second, recruitment of compatriots in the
Western World who would engage in the counterattack against what they regarded
as apostates in Algeria, Egypt, Syria, Morocco and other countries.
This wave led to the fourth wave. The spinoff of this recruitment effort led
to home-grown terrorism in most Western societies, including Canada. These
people were mainly from first or second generation immigrant families from the
Arab or Muslim world who took up the banner of jihad against their own
democratic societies. Al Qaeda calls this fourth wave al Qaeda al Oum, the
mother al Qaeda, and it is based somewhere in the border areas of Pakistan and
Afghanistan and is led by Osama bin Laden and his cadre. They now form a global
franchise modeled after a doctrine developed by one of al Qaeda's leading
theorists, Abu Musab al-Suri, which is known as the system of systems. Rather
than have a hierarchical organization, they have a flat organization of networks
of networks across the world which receive doctrinal leadership from the mother
al Qaeda, led by Osama bin Laden. They have regional organizations in Yemen,
Saudi Arabia, West Africa, North Africa, Southeast Asia and other regions that
undertake some of the other activities in the terrorism cycle, ultimately
fomenting home-grown groups to undertake attacks against targets in their home
countries. That is the evolution of the four waves of al Qaeda to the present.
How have the security and intelligence authorities in democracies responded?
As an aside, I submitted to the clerk of the committee my report to the Air
India commission of inquiry, in both French and English, which deals in detail
with this subject. I think we could use our time better to focus on the third
The Chair: Copies have been distributed.
Mr. Rudner: It was cited extensively by Mr. Justice Major, and I would
be happy to answer questions on it today or later.
I want to address the third issue, because it addresses something that has
not been taken up in Canada to the extent that it deserves, and that is the
threats to our critical energy infrastructure by terrorists and our capacity to
respond effectively to protect our energy infrastructure from those threats.
Al Qaeda itself has explicitly targeted energy infrastructure, and Canada has
been targeted, in particular, because we are an energy superpower, and we are
the major exporter of oil and gas to the United States. The strategic objectives
of al Qaeda in this respect are, first, to damage the economies of what they
call the infidel world; second, to weaken the capacity of the infidel world to
respond to their operational threats, namely, terrorism; and, third, to exploit
U.S. import dependency and to bleed American dry. That is a direct quote from
Osama bin Laden.
The targets are the pipelines; oil wells; refineries and; in particular,
specialized personnel, that is, company executives and technical people; and
offshore platforms and shipping. Tankers have been attacked, including a French
tanker, the S.S. Limburg. There have been attacks on energy
infrastructure that are hardly ever reported on in our media. There have been
attacks in the Middle East, Iraq, Saudi Arabia, Yemen — even on a Canadian
company, Nexen, in Yemen — Turkey, Europe, the United Kingdom, the Netherlands
and France, the United States, and attempted attacks here in Canada. As I
mentioned, in 2007, Sawt al-Jihad, the publication of al Qaeda in the
Arabian Peninsula, explicitly targeted Canada.
In terms of Canada's response, we have been essentially passive and reactive.
However, we can determine three different types of approaches to the protection
of critical energy infrastructure or, indeed, critical infrastructure generally.
There is, first, the defensive reactive approach, that is, guards and gates,
hardening the target. These activities are undertaken by private firms,
municipalities and airports to protect the integrity of a physical facility, a
singularity. The approach is essentially, however, reactive and protective.
The second approach is called a risk management approach. That tends to be
defensive, responding to vulnerable assessments. Resources are allocated by the
organization concerned — the business, the airport, et cetera — to cover
actuarial risks. With knowledge gained from past experience, resources are
allocated to offset vulnerabilities. The emphasis tends to be on consequence
management; that is, how to manage the negative consequences of an attack on a
The third approach is what I call proactive-preventive-strategic. With this
approach, initiatives are taken to identify the threats in advance to prevent
the attacks. This approach requires an integrated, all-source assessment to give
early warning and a coordinated response. The emphasis is on resilience.
Whatever happens, the target is up and running immediately. The best example of
this approach is the attacks on the London underground in July 2007. The trains
were running in 24 hours; the enemy was defeated.
How do we organize ourselves in Canada? In my assessment, we have a
fragmented federal leadership. The Privy Council Office has no particular
responsibility or emphasis on the protection of our critical energy
infrastructure. The international assessment staff, which is based at PCO, has
no individual whose full-time or even part-time job is analyzing threats to
critical energy infrastructure, even though we are a superpower. Public Safety
Canada has a junior level officer responsible for critical infrastructure
protection and, until recently, senior management was indifferent to threats and
challenges of critical infrastructure protection. About four weeks ago, the new
deputy minister spoke at a conference organized by Carleton University where he
signalled his intention to remedy this situation. I hope and trust that he will
The department responsible for day-to-day regulation and management of the
energy sector is Natural Resources Canada. Alas, their effective and innovative
critical energy infrastructure protection division was closed down for lack of
funding. Public Safety Canada, which had hitherto funded that unit, ceased
funding it. Even though 40 per cent of their budget lapses at the end of the
financial year, I am told, they preferred not to fund, and the unit was closed
The Chair: When was that, professor?
Mr. Rudner: Within the past year.
The responsibility has now shifted to single individuals attached to other
components of NRCan. By the way, they also lost an important research
initiative. I say good things about them not only in my personal assessment, but
an audit done by the Auditor General of Canada and published indicates how
successful, innovative and effective that unit was in Natural Resources Canada.
It was one of the few experiences of the Auditor General giving high compliments
to a unit engaged in national security.
There is also the Integrated Threat Assessment Centre, ITAC, which has a
responsibility for integrated analysis of threats to Canada and they do not have
a full-time person involved in critical infrastructure and no one with a
particular interest in energy.
The Canadian Security Intelligence Service, CSIS, has a small unit currently
of three capable people, but that is all we have responsible for the protection
of the energy interests of an energy superpower. The Royal Canadian Mounted
Police have a single person part-time. Defence and Research Development Canada
have a larger staff, but they are on the research side.
My time is almost up. Let me refer to one issue that I want to bring before
the committee because it is the problematic one. That is the problem of risk
management. We will hear a lot about it. Mr. Justice Major, in his final report,
had an entire section on it in volume 1.
The problem with risk management is that risk managers evaluate, in a sense,
actuarial risk: What do we know from past experience that tells us where our
liabilities lie. The problem with terrorism is we are dealing with "wicked
risks.'' Not wicked in a moral sense — though it is wicked in a moral sense —
but wicked in the sense that we have no actuarial experience. The 9/11 attacks
happened once; the London attacks happened once; and the Madrid attacks happened
In other words, our adversary is creative, innovative, adaptable and agile.
Things happen once and we cannot measure them by actuarial standards. They are,
in effect, low probability, catastrophic-consequence risks. The way we deal with
it, in my assessment, is by trying to use our mind to enter the mind of the
adversary through detailed and professional analysis.
In other words, if al Qaeda has decided not to attack an oil field it will
not be attacked. If they have decided to attack an oil field, it will be
attacked. The good thing, so to speak, is that al Qaeda engages in a discourse.
It has to obtain legitimacy from religious authorities and there is a discourse
that we can access. With analytical competence and skills, we can enter the mind
of the adversary and understand the "wicked risks'' to our energy sector.
I am sorry I may have gone over my time period, but thank you for your
The Chair: I know that you have generated fodder for a lot of
questions from my colleagues, and we will come back to you with those questions
once our other witnesses have had a chance to make their presentation.
Let me now call on Mr. Hutchinson.
Steven Hutchinson, Assistant Professor, Department of Criminology,
University of Ottawa, as an individual: Again, I thank you for inviting us
here today, and me, in particular, and taking time to listen to what we have to
say on these important issues before the committee.
I want to shift focus and talk about a couple of slightly different trends in
the terrorist threat environment in Canada, which will pick up on issues that
Mr. Rudner introduced for us.
It seems clear that the number of attempted terrorist attacks and successful
terrorist attacks in Canada and in the United States has increased over the last
decade. Several reports from Canada and the United States have noted that we
have seen almost double the number of terrorist attempts and attacks since 9/11
from the decade prior.
While the focus often in the media and in our minds is on spectacular and
highly organized attacks that have been planned if not always carried out, there
are also a large number of attacks and planned attacks by individuals that
seemingly operate alone or operate in concert with two or three other
individuals, and have somewhat tenuous links to larger terrorist organizations
like al Qaeda.
Both Richard Reid, "the shoe bomber'' who we know well, and Farouk Mutallab,
"the underwear bomber'' who we are also familiar with, operated and planned
their attacks to take down airliners, largely on their own. After the fact,
Richard Reid was later tied to a terrorist training camp in Afghanistan. In
terms of planning his attack from within North America, he planned that attack
largely on his own. We have also made links to financing issues coming from
Likewise the attempted bombing in Times Square in New York recently was also
perpetrated — planned, organized and carried out — by a lone individual. Again,
that attempt was unsuccessful. After the incident, that individual was linked to
almost a dozen other suspects and, perhaps, the Pakistani Taliban. However, the
planning of the acts themselves has been happening at times on an individual
Next, I will deal with individuals operating on their own and not necessarily
as part of a larger, well-organized terrorist group. These individuals,
according to family and friends of these individuals after the fact — and I will
talk about the home-grown terrorist aspect in a minute — went through periods of
growing and intensifying in their radical militancy beliefs prior to organizing,
planning and carrying out their attacks.
One thing I want to suggest is that while it is extremely important to focus
on some of the larger international terrorist organizations, there seems to be
an emergent trend in North America in domestic terrorist attacks and attempts,
which are being undertaken by individuals, to a large degree acting on their
Well-organized terrorist groups like al Qaeda, Hamas and Hezbollah have
influence in Canada and the United States, and Mr. Rudner has touched on some of
the aspects of that influence. However, these groups are increasingly paralleled
by individuals acting alone, or what has been referred to in the terrorist
subculture as "lone wolf'' terrorists; small groups of close confidants or even
one individual acting alone.
The problem with this type is that strategically it can pose a difficult
issue for law enforcement and intelligence agencies. In general, what we have
learned from investigating organized terrorist groups and from investigating
organized crime groups is that the larger an organization is, the more members
it has, the higher the risk it runs of being detected by someone outside the
group or being penetrated by law enforcement or intelligence operatives.
Large groups operating outside the law, such as organized crime and larger
terrorist organizations, depend upon or have to depend upon a significant amount
of trust, loyalty and confidentiality of the members of their groups, even
though we have seen a rise in the sort of networking of terrorist groups, which
removes some of that close contact between leaders and subordinates. In any
case, these groups still require a certain amount of trust and loyalty of their
As a result, many complex terrorist groups plots, like the Toronto 18 not too
long ago — and there are several examples from Britain as well — have not been
successful, and have been penetrated by law enforcement and intelligence
officers. This is, perhaps, part of the reason why one al Qaeda spokesperson
recently praised the "lone wolf'' approach; the idea of an individual acting on
their own from within a Western country. The spokesperson was specifically
praising Nidal Hasan, the U.S. army major who shot and killed 13 of his fellow
soldiers at Fort Hood. The spokesperson called him a pioneer, a trail blazer and
a role model who has opened the door, lit a path and shown the way forward for
every Muslim who finds themselves among the unbelievers.
While there has not been an enormous shift toward individuals acting along,
we are starting to see an increasing trend. Acting alone requires a different
frame of analysis and indeed, different techniques from law enforcement and
Immediately following the September 11 attacks, investigative and analytical
focus was understandably on large, well-organized international terrorist groups
such as al Qaeda, and of course it is important to maintain this focus as these
groups continue to pose a threat to Canadian national security.
Yet increased security measures that have been put in place since and prior
to 9/11, and the increasing pressure on terrorist organizations both
domestically and internationally, has created an environment where it is more
difficult for such well-organized and large groups to plan and carry out complex
and spectacular operations. This environment can help explain this trend toward
individual attacks. I believe it is likely we will continue to see an increasing
number of individuals and small groups that operate largely alone and from
within Western countries like Canada and the U.S.
Linked with this trend toward a more individualized form of action, or "lone
wolf'' terrorism, is a trend that has not been fully explored yet, either on the
academic side of things or, to a large extent, by policing and intelligence
It entails what we might think of as the maturation and proliferation of the
radical Islamist ideology, which now seems to have almost a subculture of its
own, with adherents in Canada and followers in the United States and in other
Western liberal countries as well as in other parts of world.
There has been a process where radicalized Islamist principles and objectives
have developed beyond being relevant only to a specific subset of Muslim
populations, for example, but the principles and objectives have evolved and
matured into a larger and more organized ideology with broader appeal to a
variety of different disenfranchised or marginalized individuals in democratic
societies, as well as in, for instance, Middle Eastern and Arab nations.
This newly pervasive and entrenched ideology seems to have its own
subculture, which is itself organized around a broad set of militant principles
taken from several different versions of radical Islam. These principles and
objectives run directly counter to more mainstream Western democratic ideals,
and the forming of this ideology has indeed become more mainstream in its
appeal. In other words, it applies to a broader audience than it did perhaps 10
or 15 years ago.
Reports show us that various types of individuals, for one reason or another,
now progress through stages of radicalization before ultimately making a
decision to engage in terrorism. Other than the highly visible examples of the
September 11 attacks and the case of the Toronto 17 and some of the larger and
more spectacular cases, many of the terrorist attacks that have occurred in the
past decade in North America have been planned and carried out by radicalized
individuals who were not previously proponents of radical or militant Islamic
Again, these comments are preliminary since there has not been a lot of
research on this area yet. There also seems to be a certain cachet in adopting a
radical terrorist ideology; in adopting a counter-American, anti-American and
anti- capitalist ideology. That ideology carries a certain currency among
certain subsets of the population and among certain subcultures as well.
This cachet may be based, at least in part, on the honour and pride many
suicide martyrs and terrorist bombers are afforded in certain regions of the
Middle East. In Palestine and Gaza, for example, otherwise relatively
well-rounded and educated young men are continuously being groomed to be martyrs
upon reaching manhood by militant units and even by their own families.
Reports of large groups of young men and increasingly young women as well who
want to grow up one day to be martyrs are now common. In these communities,
great honour and respect are bestowed upon those who answer the call to
terrorist violence, and these precise sentiments seem in some ways to be
spreading beyond the specific regions where martyr bombings are themselves
Investigating, analyzing and staying on the cusp of these and other
organizational, ideological and cultural trends in terrorism in the last decade,
and changes to the threat environment itself, are central to being able to
successfully prevent terrorist violence in Canada. It appears as though, despite
perhaps what was initial tunnel vision after 9/11, the focus on large and
well-organized international terrorist organizations has now broadened to
include a variety of other manifestations of contemporary terrorism, which do
not always follow that same pattern, even if we have not yet fully developed
radicalization intervention programs or even a theory or stage theory of
For example, police and intelligence agencies such as the RCMP and CSIS have
initiated research and analysis projects centering on the processes and dangers
of radicalization and what they refer to as homegrown terrorism. I believe we
ought to continue to devote sufficient resources to these emergent problems,
though they are not sensationalized as much as the some of the larger, more
spectacular incidents have been.
Central to this endeavour is first arriving at some understanding of the
stages or phases of radicalization that individuals go through, then determining
the risk factors that can lead toward radicalization in different individuals
and communities, because they will change across groups and individuals,
therefore coming up with, and being able to plan and initiate, effective
intervention stage strategies at different and appropriate junctures.
These programs will be extremely valuable for understanding the multi-faceted
nature of the terrorist problem, and I believe we have come a long way in the
last 10 years, and especially 5 years, in understanding that the broader problem
of terrorism is much broader, complex and multi-faceted than we at first might
The Chair: You have a minute left.
Mr. Hutchinson: I will conclude quickly. I have comments on how these
issues are particularly important and practically important for policing
agencies but also other agencies in the public sector and in the private sector
As we have come to understand that crime is a Canadian problem that everyone
must take part in preventing in some way, so too I think we can approach the
problem of terrorism and suggest that there are more institutions and agencies
beyond policing agencies and intelligence agencies that can play a role in
preventing terrorist attacks and attempts in Canada.
We know individuals in society, by and large, have played a large role in
foiling terrorist attempts, both on the airliners in the case of the Richard
Reid attempted bombing, but also in, for instance, the New York Times
Square attempted bombing where individuals and citizens played an important
role. I will be happy to provide further comments on that subject, and specific
comments about what police and intelligence agencies are doing to come to grips
with this broader problem, but I will leave it there for now.
The Chair: I appreciate that very much. We will, of course, circulate
as part of evidence your full statement, and we will have ample time for
questions where you can perhaps add information.
Before calling on Mr. Quiggan, when I introduced him few moments ago, perhaps
I should have indicated that his service in Bosnia and Croatia as well as work
in Russia, Belarus, Poland, Ukraine, Albania and other countries was done as an
employee of Her Majesty the Queen in the Right of Canada.
We appreciate the work you have done for this country in those places. We
understand why you might not be at liberty to disclose the full realm of those
activities, but I would be remiss if I did not express our appreciation on
behalf of this committee and the Senate of Canada for the work you have done in
your prior service for the Armed Forces and intelligence in this country.
Tom Quiggin, Senior Research Fellow, Canadian Centre of Intelligence and
Security Studies, Carleton University, as an individual: Thank you. Let me
reiterate the comments of my colleagues that it is regarded as a privilege and
honour to be here, not a burden at all.
Let me first talk a bit about myself, some of my beliefs and what I have come
to believe over the years; some of the things the service has given me. I will
provide a background story on one of the national security certificate cases and
my involvement in it, and use that case as a means to address the three
different specific questions you have put to us. In closing, I will identify two
key words that I think should be focused on — those key words being "knowledge''
and "money.'' I will talk more about those words at the end.
First, for myself, I would say I am a strict constitutionalist, a strong
believer in law and order. I believe that the state requires an effective and
confident legal system and an intelligence and police system. I also believe,
however, that the highest values must be maintained by the state, especially
during a time of crisis or under a time of pressure. When we are under pressure
in a state of crisis, it is not the time to let our values down.
I have also seen in a personal way the effects of failure: the consequence of
failed states and the consequence of political violence. This experience has
been primarily, but not exclusively, as a result of my service on the ground in
places like Bosnia and Croatia, and having worked in failed states such as
I have also served in a number of roles where pragmatism and facts were
critical to mission success or to survival, for that matter. As such, I have
become relentlessly attached to pragmatism, and I am keen on finding the basis
of facts. Part of the reason is that I formally served in ocean open search and
rescue with the military, anti-submarine warfare in the North Atlantic and as an
intelligence officer in Bosnia and Croatia.
Subsequent to military service, I spent time with national security
investigations with the RCMP, particularly the Momin Khawaja investigation here
in Ottawa, and I was involved in preparing risk and threat assessments for the
Prime Minister, for cabinet, for senators, for members of the other place and
for federally appointed judges. Additionally, I have testified six different
times in criminal —
The Chair: On behalf of another kind of survival, can I ask you to
slow down so our translators can survive this challenging experience with you?
Mr. Quiggin: Yes; it is on the record of the Federal Court of Canada
that I talk too much and I talk too fast.
The Chair: So far, as you are well within your 10 minutes, I am only
dealing with the fast part.
Mr. Quiggin: My apologies to the translators.
Let me move next to telling a brief story about Hassan Almrei and the
national security certificate case that landed him in jail for 6 and a half or 7
years. In April 2008, I was contacted by Paul Copeland, a defence lawyer from
Toronto. I was slightly shocked to receive a phone call from a defence lawyer,
given the fact that all my service has been to the RCMP, police units,
tribunals, et cetera.
Nonetheless, Mr. Copeland asked me if I would read the security intelligence
review on Mr. Almrei, and if I would give an accounting of what I thought about
it. The summary intelligence review is the public explanation of the
intelligence case against Mr. Almrei, and attempts to explain why he had spent,
at that point, six and a half years in jail.
My initial response was to be polite to him but ignore it. Nonetheless, I
chose to read the summary intelligence review he emailed me and it was a
life-changing experience. About 20 minutes into reading the summary intelligence
review, SIR, I could tell a number of things: There was no case against Hassan
Almrei, despite the fact he spent years in jail, which references my earlier
thoughts on constitutionalism in law. There was no indication that Mr. Almrei
was a member of al Qaeda, nor any indication that he was a member of any
affiliated or associated group of al Qaeda.
You might ask how I could determine that situation so quickly in 20 minutes
after this had been happening for several years. It comes down to a key basic
fact: theoretical knowledge about terrorism and practical knowledge about
current terrorist groups.
By way of an example, the SIR identified the Muslim Brotherhood and said Mr.
Almrei's family had a member in the Muslim Brotherhood. It suggested that
somehow makes him al Qaeda. The simple reality is that not all terrorist groups
like each other. The Muslim Brotherhood, in particular, has sworn off violence.
They hate al Qaeda with a passion, and al Qaeda hates them with a passion we
cannot begin to understand.
Consequently, having a member of someone's family in the Muslim Brotherhood
suggests that individual probably would not be in al Qaeda. Mr. Almrei is also a
hafiz; that is to say, he has memorized the Quran and he is capable of passing a
test put forward by the Saudi government that shows he can do so. It is rare in
the extreme to find a terrorist who comes from a strong religious background of
any faith. Those folks that brought us 9/11, the London subway bombing, et
cetera, come from families that are low-practising or non-practising when it
comes to religion. Individuals who are vulnerable to extremism are vulnerable
precisely because of their lack of religious knowledge, not because of it.
Anyway, the case eventually went in front of Mr. Justice Mosley of the
Federal Court, who I believe is the assistant deputy minister who also brought
us the current counterterrorism law. He examined this case, shall we say,
extensively over a period of time. At the end, he came forward and said in his
I am satisfied that Hassan Almrei has not engaged in terrorism and is not
and was not a member of an organization that there are reasonable grounds to
believe has, does, or will engage in terrorism. I find that there are no
reasonable grounds to believe that Hassan Almrei is today, a danger to the
security of Canada. Thus, I find that none of the grounds of inadmissibility
in subsection 34(1) of the Act have been made out and, accordingly, I find
the certificate is not reasonable and must be quashed.
This decision came after the man spent six and a half years in jail with no
It should be noted that a basic knowledge of terrorism and a theoretical
knowledge of terrorism helped serve in undoing that case and getting it
straightened out. On a slightly more positive note, I would say that the case of
Momin Khawaja, here in Ottawa, made extensive use of good knowledge, as the
Toronto 18 case did, which some people feel had its ups and downs. Nonetheless,
most of those cases were successful. They are good examples of how to do things
right, so the possibilities are there.
You asked about the motivation, culture and purpose of an individual who
might contemplate a terrorist act. I think it is worth noting that, in the last
2,000 or so years, the motivation for terrorism has not changed. Terrorism is a
political act. Terrorism is the act of the weak against the strong; it is the
methodology of the weak, in other words. Terrorism is an attempt to use violence
to change the policy of the stronger party.
There are multiple ways of examining terrorism or in studying it. One is to
look at the typologies, and one typology is to say there are five sorts of
terrorism. There is ethno-national terrorism, which includes groups such as the
Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam, LTTE, in Sri Lanka or Basque Fatherland and
Liberty, ETA, in Spain.
There is political-religious terrorism, which tends to be at the top of the
agenda these days. Political-religious terrorism includes al Qaeda,
Lashkar-e-Taiba, the Moro Islamic Liberation Front, et cetera.
Terrorism of the extreme left and right still exists. One of the older
examples of the extreme left is the Baader- Meinhof Group, and Timothy McVeigh
in America is an example of the extreme right.
There is also single-issue terrorism. These folks have issues with the
environment, abortion, et cetera. They operate around a single issue.
There is also state-sponsored terrorism. It is not as in vogue as it used to
be. A lot of states have dropped out of it, and are not sponsoring it anymore.
Libya has gotten out of the business, for instance. However, Iran serves as a
wonderful example currently of a state that deliberately sponsors and, as far as
can be told, is increasing its sponsorship of Hezbollah, which is important for
us here in Canada. We will talk about that issue later.
The specific motivations for individuals are something that has changed over
the years. Momin Khawaja in Ottawa underwent a period of radicalization from
approximately September 2000 to a point where he was committing terrorist acts
that would be considered criminal by the Criminal Code of Canada by January
2002. His specific motivation — the thing that turned him on to extremism — was
the Palestinian territories and the second intifada, which started in September
Interestingly, for his colleagues in the United Kingdom, who were also
convicted, their founding interests were around Kashmir and the results of
Kashmir, and a little about Afghanistan. What is fascinating is that,
collectively, when they started working together as a group, they shifted their
focus from Afghanistan, which is the country they wanted to support and be
involved with, to the United Kingdom, which is where they wanted to carry out
bombing attacks. The Iraq invasion led by the United Kingdom and America is what
motivated and caused that change.
In all these types of terrorism, it is clear to say that the motivators are
political. The identity of the groups might be religious; the justifications
they give for mass killing, et cetera, might be tied up in religious ideology;
and the cohesion may be provided by religious morals. However, the actual
motivators are political.
The lesson in all this experience is that what happens over there matters
over here. The decisions we make here in Canada about whether to be involved in
the war in Iraq, the Middle East or Afghanistan also matter over here — not only
The second question you asked was about the adaptation to new realities by
intelligence and police. Dr. Rudner used the terms "passive'' and "reactive,''
which I think are about as good an explanation as I could come up. There have
been improvements in government agencies and I am not discounting those
improvements. We are better now than we were five years ago and we are better
now than we were in 1985.
However, our improvements have been reactive, incremental and modest. The bad
guys, on the other hand — and by "bad guys'' I mean transnational terrorism,
organized crime, human smuggling, drugs, money laundering, et cetera — have
improved logarithmically. The gap between where we are and where they are has
opened over the last several years.
The story I told about Hassan Almrei was to drive home a point, and that
point is knowledge. Power by itself is no deterrence to terrorism. America is
the world's largest superpower and the most powerful nation ever. All that
military power they had did nothing to deter terrorism. Technology by itself is
not necessarily an asset in the pursuit of terrorism; often, it becomes a
liability because it shapes our thinking.
The various agencies we have in Canada all too often cut funds to training —
they do not provide broad training — and they shift analysts around endlessly in
and out of positions, so analysts are not given a chance to build the knowledge
they need. This problem is ongoing. It is also important to note now that most
knowledge exists outside of government. Even in areas of presumed government
confidence, such as defence, intelligence and security, most knowledge exists
outside of government so most of the answers we need probably will lie outside
of government, also.
Let me make two closing comments about knowledge and money. In terms of
knowledge, there are a number of centres around the world that deal with the
issues of political violence and terrorism. The best ones often exist either
outside of government or at arm's length to their government, albeit operating
with inside government agencies. The knowledge they are producing, much of which
is transferable to Canada, can be used here in Canada. If we had a centre of
knowledge in Canada that dealt with politics, political violence and terrorism,
we would automatically have a network around the world willing to engage and
Mr. Justice Major, in his Air India report, has suggested that such a centre
should be created here in Canada. In my opinion, it is a pragmatic idea — and I
am a strong believer in pragmatic ideas — and long overdue. The countries
willing to cooperate with us are Netherlands, Norway, Austria, Sweden, America,
Singapore and Morocco. The list is long, and the benefits to us would be great.
Even Hezbollah has a think tank. This group is primarily a terrorist group
with a political wing, and it has its own think tank to study political
violence. We do not have one in Canada. I am not suggesting that, if we did
create a group in Canada, we should link up with Hezbollah and deal with them.
However, I suggest that we should read their work carefully, because groups such
as Hezbollah, Hamas and the Muslim Brotherhood have rapidly expanded their
influence in Canada in only the last few years, and they have expanded that
influence through their convergence with the extreme left. The extreme left in
Canada has a series of projects with groups such as Hezbollah, Hamas, the Cairo
Conference, et cetera.
My final comment will be on money. Senator Segal mentioned at the start that
Bill S-7 has received second reading and is now at committee stage. This bill
was sponsored by the Canadian Coalition Against Terror, C-CAT. It is a brilliant
and relentlessly pragmatic idea because within terrorist groups, there are three
groups of people. There are the terrorists themselves. These people plan the
attacks and make and plant the bombs. The second ring around that one are the
supporters. These people are financial and logistics people, members of the
community who provide safe houses, tickets, et cetera. A third loose ring of
people around that one are willing to throw them a few dollars and turn a blind
It is extremely difficult to deter terrorists themselves through legislative
authority because they are committed to a cause, they tend to be true believers,
and they tend to believe they are above or beyond the law anyway. However, most
critical is that the second ring of people are members of the community who have
investments, businesses and positions in the community, and they do not like to
be in the public limelight. They do not have the courage to become involved in
terrorist activities, so they tend to stay in the backrooms. Bill S-7, if
enacted the way it is, will shine a bright light on those people, and those
people do not want to be exposed publicly.
In my view as an ex-military person and one who has worked in law enforcement
and analysis, I would say that Bill S-7 will have a strong deterrent effect on
those people who are enabling terrorism. In other words, if we cut off the money
and cut off the support, it becomes difficult to be a terrorist.
In closing, it is unfortunate that we did not have a bill like Bill S-7 in
1984. If we had, the whole Air India situation and its fallout would look much
different than it does today. In other words, following the Air India bombing,
9/11, and a series of other attacks, this bill would have been an extremely
useful civil litigation tool to go after; not the terrorists, but the people who
make terrorism possible through funding support.
The Chair: Thank you very much, Mr. Quiggin.
Mr. Rudner, you talked about the efforts of these various groups to
infiltrate and attempt to infiltrate police and security forces in other
countries. Do you have any advice about what some of those infiltrations issues
may be in our own country?
Mr. Rudner: Alas, we have no public knowledge of efforts by the
adversary to penetrate the Canadian security and intelligence community or
whether they have been stopped. We do know, however, that there has been success
in virtually every country of which we are friends and allies. My assumption is
that it is unlikely we were ignored by the adversary.
I believe that the solution lies in the blend between counter-intelligence
and counter-terrorism. Counter-intelligence has been allowed to have a lower
profile in the intelligence community since 9/11, whereas counter-terrorism has
a high profile. In my opinion, it is time to merge, at least in part, the two
aspects of intelligence, as in defence of Canada, bringing counter-terrorism to
counter-intelligence and counter-intelligence to counter-terrorism.
The Chair: Thank you for that.
Senator Joyal: Welcome, and thank you for your contribution.
I draw your attention to the recommendation of former Justice Major in his
report on the inquiry into the Air India bombing, because at least two of you,
as you mentioned in your testimony, were part of his investigation.
I have two reactions to the report, and I want your comment on those
reactions. The first is that it does not seem that we have learned how to manage
the isolation of the various agencies involved in maintaining security in
Canada. Mr. Justice Major's first recommendation deals with the appointment of a
national security adviser in the Privy Council who will have the responsibility
"to resolve, with finality, disputes among the agencies responsible for national
That recommendation scares me, because it makes me think there is a turf war
such as the one in the United States that allowed 9/11 to happen. We have been
reassured by representatives of the RCMP, CSIS, DND and other agencies that they
speak to one another and they coordinate with one another. However, the main
recommendation of Justice Major indicates that there is still much improvement
to be made to ensure that the agencies are efficient.
My second reaction is with regard to the legal tools to which we have had
access in relation to prosecutions. I know that Mr. Quiggan has been involved in
the national security certificate debates. One recommendations is that the CSIS
Act should be amended to provide for greater sharing of information with other
agencies, and that the Canada Evidence Act should be amended to create a new
national security privilege. That recommendation makes it clear that the Canada
Evidence Act is not appropriate for prosecutions that involve disclosure and
retention of strategic information. Justice Major also recommended that federal
prosecutorial guidelines should be amended. It seems that our legal tools are
not appropriate to face the challenges posed in bringing these issues to court.
Do we still have a long way to go before being able to address security in
Canada, aside from everything you have described, with the legal system we have
Mr. Rudner: Thank you very much for two very cogent questions. I will
answer them ad seriatim, and then the others can answer as well.
Apropos the concept of a more robust national security adviser to the Prime
Minister, in Mr. Justice Major's report, on that line of argument he cites my
research report to that commission precisely because I was of the view that we
need a more robust national security adviser or coordinator of the intelligence
community to, first, overcome the various silos. We need coordinated response.
Second, we need proactive initiatives. Someone has to have the big picture,
driven by analysis and knowledge, to build on Mr. Quiggan's point, not simply
driven by a sense that there is something out there that requires investigation,
but driven on knowledge and insight of what needs investigation. The idea was an
intelligence-analysis-driven agenda with a national security adviser to the
Prime Minister at the helm; an adviser who has leverage, not only by virtue of
having the ear of the Prime Minister but also by having a modest discretionary
budget that can be allocated to the various agencies involved to supplement
their resources so they can be proactive. However, they are accountable to
Parliament for those supplementary allocations of resources.
I believe that adviser is extremely important and I hope that the Government
of Canada will give serious consideration to Mr. Justice Major's recommendation.
On the link between intelligence and evidence, I was honoured and privileged
to serve on the O'Connor Commission, commonly known as the Arar Commission. Mr.
Justice O'Connor was concerned about intelligence sharing, yet his written
recommendation said that nothing in this report should be understood as limiting
the responsibility of the secured intelligence community to share intelligence;
nothing should be understood as a constraint. However, everyone in the
intelligence community understood his report as suggesting they should not share
and that they are better off not sharing lest they appear before another
judicial commission of inquiry.
The consequences of that report now have to be undone in my opinion because
sharing is vital for reasons that all three of us have addressed. I believe
committee members have heard this view from others as well and from your own
understanding of the challenges of counter-terrorism. I will say though that
there is a challenge of using intelligence as evidence in court. There is no
question. The challenge, as Senator Joyal suggests, comes from the problem of
disclosure. Our courts require cross-examination and that is absolutely
appropriate in criminal cases and in other case cases in a democracy, but let me
suggest that other jurisdictions have also dealt with this issue.
For example, the Netherlands enacted legislation that enables their signals
intelligence, which is arguably the most sensitive and secretive of all the
intelligence functions, to be brought before the courts in a modality that
enables it to be used as evidence, yet sources and methods are not disclosed.
One thing that we must do as part of our process is not only build knowledge
about the adversary, but build knowledge about our friends and allies in other
democracies and how they have dealt with the adversary.
The Chair: Does anyone else wish to respond?
Mr. Quiggin: I agree completely that the two functions, intelligence
and law enforcement, are in isolation from each other. As Mr. Rudner pointed
out, the Arar Commission had the effect of chilling that effect even more than
it was before.
A possible answer is to look at how other countries have done it. For
instance, the Danes have taken all their national security investigations, put
them under one roof, so the intelligence people and the law enforcement people
work in the same building, on the same computer systems, they eat in the same
cafeteria, they work for the same boss. It is effective there, perhaps, because
of Danish culture and Danish history, but it is a model worth looking at.
The other alternative is to look at what other countries have done and say
that these two systems will never want to share with each other. No large
bureaucratic entity wants to share all its information with the other large
bureaucratic entity, and especially when intelligence is on one side and
enforcement is on the other because they have different mandates.
In a number of countries, for example, in the Netherlands, Peter Knoop has
left the Dutch foreign ministry and is starting a new agency on radicalization,
which the Dutch government will operate and fund but at arm's length from the
government. The agency will be an excellent resource for many people to learn
from the Dutch. The Norwegians do the same thing through the Norwegian Defence
Research Establishment, FFI, which operates out of their defence ministry. The
Swedes have Magnus Ranstorp as head of their Centre for Asymmetric Threat
Studies, which operates out of the Swedish National Defence College but operates
at arm's length from their authority. In other words, he can share.
Perhaps one of the answers is to realize most of the knowledge we need for
these operations, both intelligence and law enforcement, already exists. It is
out there. It is a matter of finding a location where it can be dealt with. That
is where a centre like the one Mr. Justice Major proposed to study political
violence and terrorism can do that kind of thing because it is outside of the
government's reach — it is outside the reach of the intelligence and the police
agencies, yet it can still find that information we need at the tactical
operational and strategic level.
There are answers there; there are possibilities there. It is a matter of
being creative and aggressive like other countries have been in the past.
The Chair: Mr. Hutchinson, do you wish to add anything?
Mr. Hutchinson: I echo my colleagues' comments and will add another
slant. In terms of the types of organizations we are confronted with from a
policing and intelligence perspective, we see them more and more to be networked
organizations that share information among themselves extremely well. In
approaching that type of environment, it can hamper us if we cannot do the same
thing with our institutions, both among governments and also public and private
institutions to a certain extent.
I agree with the recommendation. I think also that sharing information indeed
should be a priority and it should be right up front. That sharing goes counter
to the tradition of the intelligence agency's silos and some of the
jurisdictional battles that they have had, and it is not easy to get rid of.
Senator Furey: A question was asked of the director of the Integrated
Threat Assessment Centre about the flow of information between agencies like the
RCMP, the Integrated Threat Assessment Centre and CSIS. Her response was
positive. Do you think part of the problem is that the agencies themselves do
not see a problem here?
Mr. Hutchinson: I would look at the particular agencies myself.
Perhaps at the management level or in certain areas of the RCMP and CSIS
feelings can be different than, for instance, the rank-and-file RCMP officers
and intelligence officers. Mr. Quiggin will know more practically about those
divisions, but within organizations there can be diverging opinions.
Mr. Quiggin: How do I answer that question without getting anyone into
The Chair: "Maybe'' is a word that works on occasion.
Mr. Quiggin: I have worked for a number of different agencies within
government: PCO, CIC, the RCMP and DOJ — the whole alphabet soup. I have worked
for them all at one point or another. My observations first might be somewhat
contrary to the director of ITAC. Having worked for some of the central agencies
such as PCO, I did not always see a ready flow of information, and I did see a
lot of turf battles.
I will further add to that and say, at the working level, at the
rank-and-file level, if the pressure is on, folks can work together. They will
drop that whole CSIS, RCMP, CIC, CBSA kind of thing. If the pressure is on,
people will work together and the job will get done. They will find ways of
creatively circumventing certain obstacles. That is a good thing.
At the top, we seem to receive direction from the senior leaders saying we
must share, we must do better. That is good, but then there is this morass in
the middle of senior managers and mid-level bureaucrats, who on a regular basis
seem to decide that bureaucratic imperative outweighs operational success. That
is the constant struggle.
It is worth noting that the Roman Senate had this same discussion 2,000 years
The Chair: Look how that worked out.
Mr. Quiggin: It did not work out well in the long run and that is a
Senator Smith: I might muse a bit in terms of what I have heard from
all three and then you can respond.
When I heard about a lot more money, for example, I was into my law office
this morning at King and Bay in Toronto and there has been way too much money
spent on security. It is not the kind of society that I want to live in. I think
there are more cost-effective ways of doing that the next time. However, when we
think about all the money the Americans have, and all the networks, yet 10 years
later they do not seem one bit wiser as to where Osama bin Laden is. They always
say he is somewhere around Pakistan and Afghanistan, and hopping around a bit. I
wonder how many billions have been spent on that subject.
What we heard from Mr. Hutchinson is that in the future it may be — I was
thinking of the Lone Ranger — the lone wolf. If a terrorist is in fact a lone
wolf, like the incident in Times Square, with your huge network I do not know
how you can pick up on that type of operation. There is then the reference to
the failed states.
I do not think Somalia has anything to do with this because it is for money.
However, with the suicide bomber stuff somehow they are persuaded that they are
going straight to heaven and I do not know if they think they will have a huge
harem there or whatever it is that prompts them to become a suicide bomber, but
some people are prepared to do it.
If we spend money, what is the most cost-effective way to spend it? For
example, with the Toronto 18 and those young people, the initial reaction of the
community — and I am from Toronto — was that they thought the police were
overreacting. However, more than half of them have pled guilty.
If we want to educate those young people, it probably will not work if it
comes from us. It must come from their own society and their own people. They
might believe it if they hear it from their own people. I think there might have
been a wake-up call there.
Whatever the amount of money is, where do you think it is best and most
strategically spent if we are to have an appreciable impact on this situation
becoming better rather than worse?
Mr. Quiggin: In terms of cost-effectiveness, one discussion I touched
on during my presentation was the idea of knowledge, which is more effective
than technology or power. You are correct in your statement that the Americans
have spent unknown billions of dollars, and they do not feel any safer now than
they did on September 12, 2001, the day after 9/11.
Because we are Western states and we are technocratic, we have a fascination
with technology, structure and organization. Currently, we spend boatloads of
money on those new intrusive-type X-ray machines in the airports. We believe
that somehow, technology will solve our security problems. In reality, anyone
that studies airport security for any length of time knows that what we need at
the end of the day are a series of soft-security approaches followed by one or
two hard points, and the security must be knowledge driven.
If we look at the folks that are good tactically at providing airport
security — the Singaporeans and Israelis do the best job — the neat thing about
their airports is that people go through them quickly.
Singapore Changi Airport is one of the world's busiest and nicest airports.
One can arrive by taxi, obtain a boarding card, go through security and be in
the restaurant in about 20 to 25 minutes on a slow day. They can provide that
speed because their system is driven by knowledge, by intelligence people and by
background, not by a bunch of machines that are a one-point checkpoint. The
Israelis have much the same approach. They engage in a lot of behavioural
profiling rather than hard technology approaches.
In terms of cost-effectiveness, I would say that is one way to go. It is
cheaper, better and less intrusive. In addition, the human rights types will be
less concerned about these methodologies than other kinds. It will be a win-win
situation all the way around.
In terms of knowledge, the production and distribution of knowledge is
cheaper than the production and distribution of tanks, fighter planes and
whatever. A centre like the one Mr. Justice Major proposed will cost millions
over a period of 10 years. It will not cost hundreds of millions or tens of
It is in the approach. We should be more intelligence- and thought-driven in
our security at places like airports and borders. In terms of allowing us to
feel better, safer and knowing what we are doing, a knowledge-led approach will
be much more effective in cost terms than a technology approach.
The Chair: Do you have a small supplementary question, Senator Nolin?
Senator Nolin: Yes; in the U.S., following the long analysis they
conducted on the September 11 attacks, it was concluded that there was a failure
of the intelligence network. Is that right? I think they came to that
conclusion, yet nothing has changed. Why is that?
Mr. Quiggin: The American intelligence community, I think, has 16
different organizations that operate within it.
Senator Nolin: The principle is the same; namely, sharing,
intelligence and driven by, or not driven by, human knowledge.
Mr. Quiggin: Interestingly enough, the Central Intelligence Agency,
CIA, and the Federal Bureau of Investigation, FBI, are not subject to the
authority of the Director of National Intelligence, DNI, which is strange, and
the DNI has no budgetary control over the agencies.
As a result, if we look at where they were 10 years ago and where they are
now, there have been modest improvements. Realistically, I do not think they are
any further ahead overall than they were 10 years ago. That is because they have
this massive amount of agencies and turf battles, and there is no one person
who, at the end of the day, cracks a skull and makes things happen.
When we see Mr. Justice Major's suggestion that the national security adviser
should have final authority, I assume that means budgetary or disciplinary
authority, or the ability to take the issue to the Prime Minister. That is the
kind of solution we need, where skulls can be cracked at the end of the day and
people can be told to get on with the mission or we will find the next guy.
Mr. Hutchinson: I wish to follow up on those comments in a similar
vein. It is a difficult question, where to draw the line between how much money
to put into something and for what reasons. I agree that throwing money at a
problem is not always the best solution. I also tend to agree that simply upping
technological capacity is not always a good solution, either.
There are certain baseline elements that will be important. I tend to agree
that if, as a society in Canada, we decide we want to be serious about
preventing terrorism and learning all about it, then we need some sort of centre
of knowledge. I suggest that centre would be useful outside of government. There
are things like ITAC that have a fair bit of success, for sure.
The problem is, when does one agree to put money into a venture like that
centre and when not? I do not have a good answer. There are things we need to
have. Those of us who are interested in studying and learning about terrorism
and want to apply for grants to pursue research and conduct long-term studies of
radicalization, for instance, sometimes have a difficult time coming up with
In that sense, a small amount of money can allow someone to conduct a
long-term longitudinal study of radicalization in Canada. We do not have a
centre that organizes even scholars who are interested in terrorism and that are
dispersed across our country. We come together only at these conferences once
every 12 months.
In terms of those things that I know of, it is probably a good idea to
centralize our knowledge about this broad problem.
Mr. Rudner: Senator Smith, to me the question is not how much money we
spend, but what is the value added. The key thing is the value added for the
We are talking about investment and value-added knowledge in at least three
dimensions. Dimension one is the question: What paradigms do the terrorists
adhere to? For example, what are their goals? What is their strategy to realize
those goals? What tactics do they use to implement those strategies? That is the
terrorist's paradigm. We study it because they themselves discuss it more or
less openly to arrive at what they would regard as optimal solutions. If we
study it, we follow it, we learn it.
The second question is: Who are the terrorists? For example, in my mind, we
need people who are familiar and comfortable with the methodologies of
sociology, so we study who becomes terrorists. In Britain, for example, the
University of Oxford published a major study in their sociology unit of captured
al Qaeda people in Europe. They found that the predominant field of knowledge of
terrorists captured in Europe was engineering, the second one was medicine and
the third one was computer sciences. We now learn things about who constitutes
the body of terrorists in Europe. The second question is the mindset. What do
these people have as their psychological attribute that makes an engineer,
doctor or computer sciences expert become a Jihadist terrorist? We need that
Third, in my mind, we want to know, frankly, how democracies deal with this
issue by way of comparative analysis of how other democratic jurisdictions have
responded appropriately and democratically to the terrorist threat to learn best
practices. In my mind, all these things can be studied, as my colleagues
suggest, with a modest investment, immense value-added and free-stranding
research units composed of scholars, academics and people with operational
experience who know language, culture, history and the dynamics of terrorism.
We can receive value-added from reasonably modest investment which, to my
mind, like my colleagues said, can make significant contributions to our
capacity to deal with a threat.
Senator Wallin: I want your response to two points, whether it is the
question of creating a centre of knowledge or the notion of a czar. We are
talking about both those things in a context that will not allow either to work.
There is no serious approach to this issue. The reaction on the campus of the
University of Waterloo was swifter and stronger to steroid use by a sports team
than it was to the Toronto 18, which originated in Waterloo. I am not kidding.
We have an issue where we do not think it is our problem and we think catching
Osama bin Laden will solve the issue.
First, how do you create the demand for the kinds of services or mechanisms
you are talking about, whether it is a czar or centres of knowledge?
Second, the reason we have expensive machines and randomization of folks at
places like airports is because machines are Charter-proof. Every time they do
anything that involves soft intelligence, they have their hands slapped. As much
as you say that you want to be able to see someone crack skulls, on the other
hand, you say we need to live within the rules and not compromise our values.
How do we make that happen with those two fundamentally diametrically opposed
Mr. Quiggin: First, behavioural profiling as practiced by the
Singaporeans, Israelis and a few others, receives lots of bad press, partly
because no one stands up and defends it effectively. Behavioural profiling is a
whole lot less intrusive and a lot less focused on race, ethnicity, language or
clothing than any other system. It is a matter of getting out there. If one had
a voice that could speak effectively, like a centre of knowledge, we could
educate the public more effectively and deal with them more effectively in
forums like this one today, for example.
In terms of being Charter-proof, I have had this discussion with other
government agencies. It would be fun in the future to see the government and the
Department of Justice Canada start to use the Charter itself as a counter-
terrorism mechanism and say, We have people in Canada, some of whom are being
funded by the government through charities.
Senator Wallin: Thank you. That is exactly right.
Mr. Quiggin: We have situations here in the country where the
government is indirectly funding groups through charities, which are federally
and duly registered, which are advocating a series of beliefs which fall well
outside the Charter and Canadian values.
I have written on this issue and discussed it with people. It would be
interesting to see the government or the Department of Justice Canada say, "We
will start applying the Charter as a test to funding here in Canada; if we are
to fund a group, directly or indirectly, or allow a group to have status,
directly or indirectly, then we want to ensure this particular group and the
values they are preaching pass a Charter test.''
The Charter cuts both ways and could be a good counterterrorism mechanism.
The Chair: Depending on how that was done, is there a risk that many
religious organizations, who, by definition, have different distinctions
relative to adherence to different faiths, could find themselves falling outside
the Charter? I cannot imagine that is your intent.
Mr. Quiggin: No, it is not the intent. However, if we are to fund them
through charities and things like that, then the government has a right to
establish a tougher standard. Whether they fall outside the Charter in their
particular beliefs, the question is whether they are advocating those beliefs to
be pushed on someone else? I make that critical distinction. If they are off
doing their own thing, fine. If they are pushing values on someone else, then
they have moved into a different territory.
Senator Wallin: I think my concern is evident. We are being stopped.
We have this discussion every week. When we impose criminal evidentiary
standards in a terrorism case, we will never meet them, or it is difficult to do
I think some of the problems are the right hand and the left hand not wanting
to talk to each other. In some cases, they deliberately do not talk because
one's standard of a test for evidence would prevent them from gathering the
intelligence they need to gather.
Mr. Quiggin: I have testified at a number of cases under different
standards. The Khawaja case was criminal, so we were subject to the
"beyond a reasonable doubt'' standard. The Federal Court standard is broader and
is an easier standard to meet. If enacted, Bill S-7 would be a Federal Court
civil action standard, and not a criminal action standard. The standards of
evidence are lower, broader and easier to meet, frankly.
Senator Smith, you were talking about cost effectiveness. Bill S-7 will
provide a relatively cost-effective means to go after a much broader group of
people who support terrorism and support it at a standard of evidence that is
lower than the criminal evidence we have to deal with when dealing with the
Ontario Superior Court or criminal courts.
Mr. Rudner: Senator Wallin, I want to address the first part of your
question, which was Canada's security culture. To make a joke on part of your
question, if Canada caught Osama bin Laden, most Canadians would be of the view
we should give him a lecture, in both official languages, on sustainable
development, gender equity, regional balance, et cetera, and he would come over.
Senator Wallin: And tell him not to do it again.
Mr. Rudner: To be serious, I think you are absolutely right that most
Canadians do not have a sense that terrorism constitutes a threat to Canada.
Where does the problem lie? I think it lies partly with government and partly
in education. Part of the difficulty in a democracy is in the way we manage, for
example, our legal process for the administration of justice. The Crown tends
not to disclose to the public things that it is of the view are sub judice
and should be addressed only before the court. In the United Kingdom, the
United States, Australia and most of Europe, information about the terrorist
threat and the people captured can be disclosed to the media without being seen
to prejudice the rights to a free trial.
How we can work this out as a balance in Canada will depend on our Charter
and legal traditions, but it is something we ought to examine. I believe an
informed public is vital to the administration of justice, just as a fair trial
is vital to the administration of justice.
Allow me one other word on the education side. Here, I find myself troubled.
My colleague, Professor Hutchinson, mentioned there is a small tribe of people
in Canada in universities who teaching and research national security and
terrorism. Count the number on both hands, and you have summed it up. For
example, we almost 2,000 Canada research chairs were established under the
auspices of the Government of Canada. Only one single position to a junior
scholar at the University of Laval was given to national security issues. Not
one was given to intelligence.
There is a drought of resources in the higher education system. The students
come in immense numbers to register in the courses where this subject is taught.
The constraint is from the supply side. How do we overcome the supply side
The Canadian funding councils for research will not fund national security
and terrorism research as a matter of policy. This issue came up between the
Canadian Association for Security and Intelligence Studies and the Social
Sciences and Humanities Research Council, SSHRC. SSHRC will not fund it because
it is too sensitive.
In my opinion, funding should not be direct funding. CSIS and the RCMP should
not be in the business of endowing university programs. It is not appropriate.
On the other hand, the director of CSIS meeting with university presidents at a
cocktail party and saying, by the way, the national security and intelligence
studies you are doing are of value, sends a message of precedent into the
university community that, perhaps, we ought to build up our capacity.
For the Senate and parliamentarians to say so would give a major leverage
forward. We have a supply side problem, which must be addressed.
The Chair: Mr. Rudner, I think you would agree with my experience at
the Institute for Research on Public Policy and at universities. The discipline
you talk about is, by definition, interdisciplinary. The vertical stovepipe
operation in a lot of these academic shops — are you a historian, a political
scientist or a sociologist — works against the interdisciplinary funding base.
Young academics worry about tenure and moving up in the process. Often, they
have to choose a path that falls into one of those stovepipes or there is no way
for them to advance in the academy. There may be problems on the government
side, which Mr. Justice Major has effectively measured on the knowledge piece.
However, our colleagues in the academic community have a bit of head-clearing
work to do, as well, as part of this process, if my saying so is not too
Before I call on Senator Furey, I want to ask colleagues on the panel to
reflect on the premise of lawful disruption. We have had testimony before this
committee that said that the Toronto 18 was the second or third network that
police and security forces were pursuing.
While there was insufficient evidence with respect to the prior networks and
there was sufficient evidence on the Toronto 18, other methodologies, referred
to euphemistically as lawful police work, to disrupt those networks were
employed in a fashion that had the desired effect, namely, of disrupting those
networks before damage could be done. I think Canadians have a clear distinction
in their own minds between prophylactic work by police and intelligence forces
that keep bad things from happening and legitimate law enforcement prosecutorial
activities that bring before our constitutional legal justice system those who
are guilty of either having done bad things or having conspired to do bad
I am not asking you to respond to that comment now. I ask you to reflect on
it, but it would be good if we had a moment before we finish this hearing to
have your perception on it.
Senator Furey: We have heard testimony that, because of past
successes, there appears to be a sense of complacency in Canada about the threat
of terrorism. Do you agree that there is a sense of complacency in the public in
general? More particularly, given Parliament's response to the threat, what do
you think parliamentarians are demonstrating; a sense of complacency, false
security or an awareness of the threat?
Mr. Rudner: I believe there is a complacency deeply rooted in Canadian
political culture and, indeed, in the Canadian media. I think the commanding
hypothesis of most Canadians is, we are nice people; we are decent; how could
anyone want to bear us harm? Sadly, there are organizations that engage in
activities in this country that do harm us. There are even organizations that
engage in activities internationally targeting us to be harmed, so we are
confronted with a reality and we are not content dealing with it. We are in a
state of denial.
In my opinion, I believe Parliament must exercise leadership, not to frighten
Canadians, and not to be alarmist, but to be realistic with Canadians.
Parliament must find ways and means of explaining to constituents and the
broader public, and to provide media with statements to the effect, that these
are the threats; this is why we are threatened; this is the nature of the danger
facing us; and, by the way, we should have confidence in our security and
intelligence committee. This is not an effort to panic people.
Let me quote Lord Carlile, who was the independent reviewer of the terrorism
legislation in the U.K. He made the point that the reason there have not been
attacks is precisely because of the success of the security and intelligence
community in dealing with these threats in a society where people are aware of
Perhaps we can come back to disruption later.
Senator Tkachuk: Should we stay in Afghanistan? We are there because
of terrorist attacks, so I think this question is a national security question.
Mr. Quiggin: When I was working in Singapore in 2006-07, that exact
question came up; what about Afghanistan. From a Canadian point of view, I we
need to step back and take a larger look. It is not Afghanistan that is really
the shape of the future; it is Pakistan and the Pakistan border region that is
the true problem to our future and the future of many other people.
Whether we should keep the military in Afghanistan is almost a tactical or
operational question. We need to back off and look at the larger strategic
question of how we go about engaging in Pakistan and keeping its economy going
enough that it does not collapse, and how we change the points of view of the
Pakistanis, because it is the Pakistani ISI, et cetera, that is causing many
Canada keeps saying that we want to be an international power, we want to be
involved and we want to be a peacekeeper. Well, we are in it or we are out of
it, folks. My view is that we should continue to have a role in the region. How
that role is shaped, who leads it, et cetera, is up for much discussion, but if
we are serious about being a world presence, a G8 and G20 kind of country, then
we had better stay engaged and focus on the issue.
Mr. Rudner: I think the real question is why we are there. I believe
that the purpose was both morally and politically justified. We were there to
prevent Afghanistan from being a sanctuary for international terrorist assaults
on the rest of the world, including the Islamic world, first and foremost.
However, there was a mission shift. The mission shift comes, frankly, because
all of us in the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, NATO, community are
democracies. We tried to transform Afghanistan in our own image of liberal
democracies. The political culture of Afghanistan regards this transformation as
an alien imposition by non-believers on a society that has never experienced
colonialism, and resisted the Soviet Union and the United Kingdom precisely
because it is proud of its capital T traditions. Its traditions, in fact,
include behaviour and values that are antithetical to our Charter of Rights and
Freedoms and our concept of political democracy. We have had a clash between
every good intention and local culture and beliefs. The resistance is growing
precisely because we are seen by Afghans as a threat to their cultural order,
their value system. Frankly, it is a real dilemma for which there is no easy
Senator Tkachuk: Before we went there, the Taliban was their cultural
Mr. Rudner: There was no resistance to the Taliban.
Senator Tkachuk: People live in the Stone Age and behave like they
live in the Stone Age, and present a threat to democracies that do not want to
live in the Stone Age. Do we not have a responsibility to say that we think they
can change without losing their culture and values; that perhaps a high school
education, and not beating up women and such things are a good way to go. Can we
not be more frank about why we are there? We cannot bury our heads. I have heard
people say that we have disturbed their culture. What culture?
Mr. Rudner: For them it is a deeply-rooted culture, and that is our
Senator Tkachuk: I know that, but it is dangerous.
Mr. Rudner: It is dangerous, but they are prepared to fight for what
they believe is their cultural integrity, and to kill us in ordinate numbers. We
are not prepared to pay that price in blood and in treasure. That is our
We are not there for evil purposes; we are there for purposes that are in our
national interest, and which I believe are in the international security
interest, but how do we reconcile this view with the Afghan view of their value
system, their beliefs and their political integrity?
Senator Wallin: I think we have to make a distinction in these
discussions between Taliban and Afghans. The Afghan culture was there prior to
10 years of Taliban rule. These people were not preserving Afghan culture.
Mr. Quiggin: One of the true failures of the missions has been, as Dr.
Rudner pointed out, that we have tried to democratize the place. I know that
foreign affairs love this kind of thing and that it is popular among Canadians,
but in reality the country does not need democracy; it needs some kind of
development. If the water comes through the pipes, if the sewage system works,
if the local school is open and if no one is hammering the village with heavy
artillery today, it is a good day.
When development occurs over a period of time, they will find their way to a
better future. It may be founded on traditional Afghan culture, which can take
years to move, but it will go there. If we tell them that we will impose
democracy on them, they will resist it on principle, if nothing else. The right
approach is required as much as anything else. We are still trying to measure
the country by democratic standards, and that is not going to happen, and nor
Senator Tkachuk: Why do they vote?
Mr. Quiggin: They have a tradition of voting through a series of
councils that they have had for years. They are told to vote, so they do it.
Most vote straight down tribal lines or community lines, as they are told to by
their communities, and they have a feeling that something will happen. Of
course, nothing has because there has been only the empty act of an election.
In the West, we say, Oh, look; they had an election in Haiti, Somalia or
Afghanistan, and we pat ourselves on the back and think it is great. However, we
tend to think that the mere fact of having an election is something. We tend to
think of the process itself, which is an Ottawa bureaucratic mentality. It is
good the process is working, but we need results, which means roads, water in
pipes and food on tables. That kind of thing will bring peace and stability in
the long run.
Senator Tkachuk: I have one last question, related to Senator Wallin's
point. Let us say everyone left. What would happen?
Mr. Quiggin: The Pakistanis would jump for joy. The Indians would be
full of fear. The Russians would hate it with a passion, and Afghanistan would
probably go back to what it was under a Taliban type rule, unless one of the
particular groups is able to establish control.
One reason Pakistan continues to agitate in Afghanistan is because Pakistan's
single greatest fear remains India, and with good historical reason. If that
fear could be withdrawn from the equation — if Pakistan and India were truly at
some sort of stable relationship — Pakistan would no longer feel the need to
agitate the problem in Afghanistan.
If NATO as a whole, or if the entire world, lifted up and took off out of
Afghanistan tomorrow, the Pakistanis would be back there in a flash trying to
reorganize what they had done in the past. The road to peace in Afghanistan
probably lies through New Delhi and Islamabad, not through Kabul.
Mr. Rudner: I have two other interventions. From the north, near
Uzbekistan, there is an Uzbek population in the northern part of Afghanistan.
That is why it is the most stable place until now. In the west of Afghanistan
are the Iranians, which is the Dari population. They speak a Persian language
and they are of the Shia faith. They were repressed by the Taliban. Once again,
they have benefited from the NATO presence, interestingly enough. That benefit
would become unstuck with a NATO withdrawal.
Senator Manning: Welcome, witnesses. I believe Professor Hutchinson
mentioned the role that other agencies play in Canada in preventing terrorism,
and the increased role that police and other agencies would play in preventing
it. Can you elaborate on that point for us?
Mr. Hutchinson: As a criminologist, I try to draw on other areas where
we have large knowledge bases, like organized crime, and see what is applicable
to what is happening in policing and intelligence agencies with respect to
terrorism in the last ten years.
In terms of crime prevention and managing the problem of crime in Canadian
society, we have seen that it works okay to devote a single institution to
responding to criminal complaints, investigating suspects, making arrests and
passing off suspects to prosecution and to the courts. It works okay if we react
and we are responding to criminal events.
Some of my colleagues touch on the issue of prevention, as well. If we want
to prevent individuals in Canada from radicalizing and becoming engaged in
terrorist incidents, or if we want to prevent terrorist attacks on Canadian soil
more generally, we need a networked approach. Not only do we need public
institutions and agencies like CSIS and the RCMP to communicate, but I believe
there is a role for the private sector to play. For instance, with respect to
crime prevention, the insurance industry has been seminal in pushing forward the
idea of Neighbourhood Watch programs, which are effective in reducing crime
rates in certain communities. The insurance industry plays a role in that
I think there are roles for other private sector agencies in preventing
terrorism. From what I know of private sector institutions, it seems to be
demanded by law. Our financial institutions have to report suspicious
transactions and cash transfers over a certain amount. The amount used to be
over $10,000, but I think they have changed that amount now. Some of those
principles are embedded in law and we force private institutions and the private
sector to come on board with this notion of somehow being engaged in preventing
It is not that I have thought out a well-planned model for engaging different
actors and agencies from every sector. However, there are things to be said
about engaging private businesses, for instance, in urban centres, which tend to
be the most common targets of terrorist incidents. Does there need to be some
sort of business communication network where they can talk about, and share,
information? I believe the private sector should also communicate with police
responsible for governing, policing and managing urban infrastructure and urban
Again, to stop something from happening, ultimately a sole agency or
institution will not be able to do it; it has to be a collaborative effort. We
have to agree that we will all have some role to play.
In terms of specific recommendations for specific agencies with respect to
terrorism, it is an interesting question. We have not thought that far down the
line because, traditionally, we talk only about the state agencies of CSIS and
the RCMP. There is not much discourse or discussion about the role of the
The Chair: Do other members of the panel wish to contribute or add to
Mr. Rudner: I will mention one thing, to build on Professor
Hutchinson's point. In the energy sector, some of the major oil companies have
developed their own capacity, first, to gather information about perceived
threats and, second, to prepare an analysis. There is an energy and utilities
network system in the energy sector, which is encouraged and supported by NRCan,
precisely to achieve that end. It is probably one of the few such
institutionalized initiatives in Canada.
The Chair: I think the average Canadian is of the view that, through
satellite photography, various other sensing devices, police cooperation and
private sector databases, someone somewhere has a handle on core infrastructure.
Someone has an understanding of the proximate and medium-term risks and has a
plan to address that threat. Would they be wildly naive in coming to that
Mr. Rudner: Entirely and absolutely, yes. The network does not do this
The Chair: Do you want to come off the fence and tell us how you
Mr. Rudner: Not only does it not exist at that macro perspective, we
do not have yet in Canada a model of the interdependencies of our critical
national infrastructure, so that, for example, natural gas drives electric
power, which drives water supply to hospitals.
Senator Wallin: Should we take this discussion off the record?
Mr. Rudner: It is on the public record.
Senator Wallin: I know.
Mr. Rudner: We have not even gone to that extent yet in Canada.
The Chair: Do you want to add to that answer?
Mr. Quiggin: The only two small bright lights, perhaps, are the
provinces of New Brunswick and Alberta, which both have a critical
infrastructure program in place. Alberta is probably further ahead than New
Brunswick, but both of them are at least thinking down the right path. They have
waited for federal leadership. It has not happened, so they said, if all else
fails, we will do it ourselves.
The Chair: I recall some years ago that a ministry or an office was
created for the protection of vital infrastructure and it had a senior deputy
minister in charge. Am I hallucinating?
Mr. Quiggin: It was Emergency Preparedness Canada, which became the
Office of the Critical Infrastructure Protection, which somehow disappeared into
Public Safety Canada. I ask any of you where to go to find this critical
infrastructure plan, because I would like to read it. I do not think it exists.
The Chair: Maybe it has to be secret, by definition, so we cannot see
Mr. Rudner: An action plan was issued two weeks ago by this unit. It
was five years in the drafting, and it essentially says that there should be
information sharing, full stop.
The Chair: At least we can give them credit in taking great care in
Mr. Rudner: Yes.
Senator Joyal: I have two sets of questions. Professor Rudner, you
talked a lot about the security of infrastructure in relation to energy, but you
did not mention biochemical risks at all, which are even greater, in my opinion,
though I might be wrong. You are the expert and I am not. However, can you
My second question is: Justice Major has come to the conclusion that we need
a supra authority to govern the various agencies; as you said, to give order to
the whole, to have a broader picture and so forth. Even in his own comments,
those measures should be taken immediately, before enactment of legislation on
national security privilege and so on. In other words, the decision is an
administrative one that is in the hands of the Prime Minister, if I conclude
Why has the Department of Public Safety been unable to assume that
responsibility so we have to look somewhere else? Is it not a conclusion that
the present authority of the Minister of Public Safety is not delivering what
should be expected from the minister? I am not here targeting any of the
ministers. I am thinking only in terms of structure of government operations.
Mr. Rudner: I will answer the first question first. Energy, in my
discussion for this committee, was presented as a target. Biochemical attack is
a tactic of the adversary. Yes, there is no question that, as a tactic,
biochemical threats are to be taken seriously, especially since we know the
educational profile of terrorists, as has been disclosed by the University of
Oxford and other studies of the captured terrorists. Many terrorists have a
science background, including medicine and engineering. Given that particular
profile, yes, biochemical threats are serious. Energy, in my view, represents a
target so there is a tactic target.
Senator Joyal: For infrastructure, I will give an example: water
infrastructure — drinking water in cities, for instance. If someone were to try
to pollute those sources by spreading any kind of virus, they could kill a lot
of people before authorities are ready to intervene.
Mr. Rudner: Yes, indeed, and water is considered one of Canada's 10
critical infrastructure sectors exactly for that reason. The problem is, of
course, that responsibility for water, like the responsibility for many other
sectors, is dispersed in Canada. It belongs with the municipalities. No federal
unit deals with drinking water. That situation creates a different sort of
problem, which I think the committee should address as part of the topic of
critical national infrastructure. Yes, your point is well taken.
Let me also address the second question you put with respect to national
security adviser. I believe Mr. Justice Major, like you say, has the view that
the decision to give the national security adviser more robust capabilities is
an administrative one. What is interesting, I should add, is that in Mr. Justice
Major's report, he points out that virtually every other national security
adviser or coordinator prior to the current one opposed this idea. It was
essentially me and Professor Bruce Hoffman, another academic, who advocated it,
and Mr. Justice Major accepted it. The question is why did the others oppose it?
One must read their texts and you can see the reasons for their opposition;
essentially bureaucratic traditions in my opinion. However, the problem here is
that the Department of Public Safety does not have responsibility for the
national security adviser. That responsibility belongs to the Privy Council
Office. The minister responsible for public safety, according to law, is
responsible for coordination of particular agencies, and is the portfolio
manager for CSIS, RCMP, Canada Border Services Agency, Corrections Canada, and
probation. The Minister of Public Safety does not have control of CSC and other
components of the Canadian security and intelligence community. That minister
does not have, in effect, the authority to redirect the national security
adviser. That authority belongs to the Prime Minister.
Senator Joyal: In other words, minister is responsible for the
agencies individually, and answers for the budget and for their general
operation, according to the principle of ministerial responsibility that has
been alleged as being the paramount elements of our system. However, the
minister today cannot say that the minister will exercise the overall
responsibility of planning and giving direction and making sure that we break
the silo walls between all them?
Mr. Rudner: The Minister of Public Safety does not have budgetary or
legal responsibility, for example, for the departments responsible for critical
infrastructure: NRCan, Transport Canada, the Department of Finance Canada and
the rest. The minister is confined to a leading coordinating role, which is
moral suasion, but the national security adviser to the Prime Minister, in Mr.
Justice Major's view, because it is at the prime ministerial level, would have,
should have, more robust leadership and leverage.
Senator Joyal: In other words, the minister will be able to go beyond
the individual departmental to direct any department whose responsibility falls
within the overall plan, and within the overall planning of objectives and
priority objectives, to take initiatives; is that what you are telling me?
Mr. Rudner: Yes, that is the view I have and I believe to which Mr.
Justice Major subscribes.
Senator Joyal: On the issue of the Canada Evidence Act, were you
involved in the discussion with Mr. Justice Major on the need to amend the
Canada Evidence Act, section 38 and section 39, to provide for a capacity to
balance what should remain confidential and what can be tabled in court in terms
of making sure the prosecution has a better outcome than what we have seen in
Mr. Rudner: No, I did not have any input into that discussion.
Mr. Quiggin: I want to put forward one quick view on the Canada
Evidence Act. In the British case, when a section 38-type problem comes up, the
judge who hears the section 38 argument is the same judge who runs the criminal
trial. Here in Canada, if we have a criminal trial and a section 38 issue comes
up, everyone has to pack up and move across the street to the Federal Court,
which may or may not be sitting at that particular period of time, and may or
may not have a judge available. Finally, they have their hearing, receive their
decision and then they go back across the street to the criminal judge, tell the
judge what happens and away they go again. It is a long-drawn-out process.
In most other countries, as I said, the same judge hears the section 38
concerns as the one who hears the criminal trial. If that process was amended
here in Canada, the speed of the process would increase dramatically; it would
be a wonderful idea.
Momin Khawaja's trial here in Ottawa was derailed numerous times by section
38, and was drawn out exactly for that reason.
Senator Joyal: Do you think the judges that are called upon to
adjudicate on those issues have the professional expertise to deal with those
issues in the context of the difficulty of all the balancing between the
confidentiality and the Canada Evidence Act? Do the judges have the expertise to
be sure that the court will be sensitive enough to the differences when they
hear those cases, if we compare them to the average cases that those judges
Mr. Quiggin: I have had the pleasure of sitting in front of Mr.
Justice Mosley on a couple of different occasions, and in his case, I can assure
you he has a broad knowledge of how the intelligence community works and is not
shy about cross-examining witnesses.
Senator Joyal: Is that because of his past experience?
Mr. Quiggin: I believe so, yes. I have also seen over the years though
— certainly with respect to the Momin Khawaja trial in which I testified — it is
not the job of the intelligence community or the law enforcement community to
educate judges. One does not do that. However, I have seen judges say, Okay, I
will sit back and you explain this to me.
There is a willingness on their part to entertain new ideas and new
knowledge, which is a positive thing. I am aware of the fact that behind the
scenes education programs are going on for federal judges and for criminal
judges I believe as well. Probably more of that would be a good thing because
the courts are moving into an area that traditionally they have not touched in
the past, and they are like everyone else, they have need to be brought along.
The Chair: I notice that Mr. Quiggin has been qualified as a court
expert on intelligence sourcing and reliability by the Federal Court, and on
jihadist terrorism in both federal and criminal courts.
As a matter of curiosity, how would that qualification have happened? Who
would have provided that certification for the purposes of evidence and a trial
and its proceeding?
Mr. Quiggin: In any given proceeding in Canada, be it in the Federal
Court or the criminal court, either the defence or the prosecution can put forth
an individual and say they would like this individual to testify, not on facts
of the case but on their opinion about the case. The opposing side, be it
defence or prosecution, has the right to oppose that individual. They can
challenge the witness and say they do not think the witness is credible, they do
not think the witness has the background, et cetera.
The Chair: Or to attest to it.
Mr. Quiggin: Or to attest to it, if they will, and then, at the end of
the day, the presiding judge says, I hereby accept your expertise within a
narrowly defined area, in which case the witness is qualified, or the judge can
say no. It is as simple as that.
Mr. Rudner: To add to Mr. Quiggin's point, like him, I have appeared
before judges of the Federal Court, and I am impressed with the quality of their
knowledge. We ran a seminar for judges of the Federal Court on issues dealing
with terrorism. It was not to define the law, but to examine terrorism as a
phenomenon and intelligence as a response so that judges could have an
understanding of where intelligence and national security have distinctions
within themselves that make them different than criminality, conventionally
Together with the Federal Court of Canada and the Supreme Court of Canada,
the Carleton centre mounted a major international conference on the
administration of justice and national security in democracies in June of 2007.
We had 14 or 15 supreme-court-level judges from nine countries, plus academics
from Canada and around the world, at this conference. Over 200 people from the
legal and judicial community attended. The book on that conference should be
published later this year.
Together, academics, judges and legal professionals have tried to build up
the knowledge base in this country by comparing other jurisdictions and
examining our own experience so that we can achieve the end that Senator Joyal
Senator Joyal: We are going almost in a circle here. Earlier you said
that the academic community does not have sufficient capacity to conduct
long-term studies on terrorism and so on. You said that there is only half a
person in a chair at Laval University. At the same time, if the judges who will
hear these cases do not have the proper background to understand the phenomenon
and the various contexts and intricacies of how things operate, we will miss the
boat in preparing the court.
Mr. Hutchinson, you are a professor of criminology. How do you teach
terrorism in universities for the law courts?
Mr. Hutchinson: Terrorism tends to appear as a subcategory of a
variety of disciplines. Sociology becomes interested in terrorism as it
intersects with sociological issues. Geographers are also interested as it
intersects with geography, et cetera. For criminology, we tend to teach the
distinctions and similarities between terrorism as a legal category of crime,
but also as an act.
Most criminal offences in the Criminal Code of Canada, other than, for
instance, sexual assault and other sexual offences, have some motive or profit
element. Terrorism, as my colleagues have mentioned, does not have that same
profit orientation, so there is a fundamental distinction between terrorism and
other crimes. We consider terrorism a legal crime, but in a lot of contexts that
is not a good way to think about it. It is useful for legal purposes so that we
can prosecute terrorist offences, but in terms of what a judge needs to know, my
hope is that they will understand some similarities, in that it is useful in
legislation to have terrorism listed as a criminal offence. However, it is
different from traditional criminal offences as well, so we try to teach both
Senator Joyal: I have the same question on the issue of special
advocates. When this committee discussed the position of special advocate, and
made a recommendation about the position, one of our concerns was that those
appointed as advocates could no longer defend people accused of terrorism
because they would be seen as neutral sources of information for the court. If
we do not provide enough training for judges, lawyers and other experts in the
legal system, we will find ourselves improperly equipped for the kind of
adaptation that Justice Major suggested we would need to better face terrorism
Mr. Quiggin: I have given three training sessions for the special
advocate lawyers in the Department of Justice, and I have always focused on the
subject of intelligence in evidence. I gave one training session for the defence
lawyers with the Guantanamo Bay military commission focusing again on
intelligence in evidence. I believe that the special advocate program is
working. It is evolving and must change. It was set up initially in a
constrained manner, as you described, that is, if someone became a special
advocate here, it froze their ability to work elsewhere. I think they are moving
away from that, and the pressure is on the Department of Justice to do so.
If the training sessions continue, and if the process continues to evolve,
then it is moving in the right direction and we will have defence lawyers who
can build up a body of knowledge and learn how to ask the right questions, yet
they still can be constrained by the secrecy legislation so that they are not
spreading the knowledge where it should not be. I think the program has been an
effective one. It is working, but it still needs to evolve and be subject to due
Senator Joyal: In section 21, Justice Major recommends that the
special advocate who is attached to the Immigration Act be extended in the
context of a prosecution for a person accused of terrorism.
Last week, I raised the issue of finding a neutral ground where the
privileged information can be balanced. We find ourselves in a situation where
agencies have information that they do not want to release because they are
afraid that it will be used in a prosecution where it will be made public, which
will jeopardize other investigations. There is a need to have a neutral ground
so that the court can be satisfied that what will be retained as confidential
will not hurt the outcome of the trial, which is a key factor for the efficiency
of the system.
Mr. Rudner: I refer you to the British model, because our system was
patterned in good part, although not entirely, on the U.K. experience. In the
U.K., there is a special office with a secretariat of the special advocates.
That office constitutes the bureau where the confidential information is
retained, and which monitors the retention of national security confidentiality.
The Department of Justice may well at some point re-examine the British model
and see to what extent, if at all, it can be adapted and applied here in Canada,
for the reasons that you indicated.
The Chair: As might this committee.
Senator Furey: Mr. Quiggin, in your opening remarks, you referred to
five groups of terrorists: ethnic-social, political-religious, extreme left and
right, single-issue, and state-sponsored. How do you rank them in terms of
potential threat to Canada? In general, how sophisticated are these terrorists
in terms of education, fundraising, weaponry, communications and that sort of
Mr. Quiggin: In the 1970s, ethno-national terrorist groups were right
at the top, and the extreme left and extreme right followed behind. Single-issue
terrorism was not that big a deal, and political-religious terrorism was
virtually unheard of. Currently, that situation has inverted itself and a
straight statistical analysis would say that political- religious groups, in
terms of sheer numbers, dominate the process, followed by ethno-national and
then probably by single-issue groups. State-sponsored terrorism, as I mentioned,
has been in recession for years, and it is only the Iranians who genuinely can
be accused of continuing that process.
In terms of where we are going in the future, political-religious groups will
be with us for a while yet, and we may as well learn to love it. All too often,
the focus is on Islam, but it is not always only Islam that has a problem. There
are fundamentalist groups in a host of other areas that do not tend to make the
In terms of the things that keep me awake at night, terrorism is a threat,
but so are being run over by a car, falling off my motorcycle and being hit by
lightning. All these things are threats, so we adapt to them and deal with them.
When I look five to ten years down the road, the things that keep me awake at
night are chemical and biological weapons in the hands of terrorist groups
driven by scientists who have an environmental or global outlook.
Political-religious issues will be a problem, and ethno-national issues will
be an ongoing problem in a lot of countries. However, the real stuff that scares
me five to ten years down the road are environmental and "Earth first'' kinds of
groups, driven by scientists whose objectives on a number of occasions are to
reduce the earth's population to what they determine to be a sustainable level.
Those groups are the ones that scare the daylights out of me.
Senator Furey: How sophisticated are terrorists today, on average?
Mr. Quiggin: There is often a conception that terrorists are insane,
they were subject to sexual abuse or beaten up when they were children, they are
the products of poverty, et cetera.
Generally speaking, however, the terrifying thing about terrorists is how
normal they are. Most of them are well educated. If we take a sampling of
terrorists, on average, they tend to be better educated than the population they
are drawn from. Are they educated? The answer is, usually, yes. Are they
affected by drugs and alcohol? Generally speaking, the answer is, no; the
incidence of alcoholism and drug use amongst terrorists is again less than the
population from which they are drawn.
In terms of claims of mental disease or mental defect, terrorist groups,
again, on average, have a lower incidence of mental disease or defect than the
population from which they are drawn. That is a bit concerning.
It is interesting to note that the Momin Khawajas of the world, so to speak,
tend to be well educated, technically savvy, they come from good families and
they have low-practicing religious backgrounds but they tend to be rather
amateurish. Being a terrorist is hard work and requires a lot of skill.
Terrorists need financial, technical, operational and leadership skills, and it
is hard to develop those skills in a society like ours. Typically, once they
carry out one attack, they are hunted down and it becomes difficult.
The fear in the future lies in situations where terrorists are able to group
and be able to operate without a lot of outside pressure. Afghanistan was such a
threat because they were able to go up into the hills and run their camps
virtually undisturbed from the outside. That situation typically happens in
countries where there are large amounts of political instability; where there is
no law enforcement or intelligence that can reach out and touch them.
In the future, we should look at failed states. Somalia is on the list of
places we should be concerned about, as are Sudan, Afghanistan, northern
Pakistan, et cetera.
Are they sophisticated? Yes, most of them are well educated. Are they highly
experienced? The current crop is not, because we so badly disrupted them in
Afghanistan and a few other countries. However, they are starting to come back
and they are starting to relearn.
Senator Furey: Do you see the use of the Internet to disrupt financial
institutions, governments and society in general as a huge threat?
Mr. Quiggin: I see it as "a'' threat but, again, not a massive threat.
Interestingly, there have been a couple of attempts by terrorist groups to have
a mass attack on Internet, but it requires a huge amount of skill, technology
and luck to achieve a cascading effect, which is what they want.
However, there was a recent plot in London where a couple of young fellows
decided they wanted to mount a terrorist threat against the Internet. They came
up with the rather novel idea of identifying where the primary node is in the
U.K. It is in a building and there is a picture of it on the Internet; you can
find it, as it is not hard to find. It is in the Canary Wharf area.
They also discovered that all the backup computers to the computers that
bring all the Internet traffic into the U.K. are in the same building. Who
designed that? I am not sure, but it was probably an engineer and not a security
At any rate, after considering the idea of an Internet-based attack, they
decided it was too hard and thought the idea was to have someone take a job as a
cleaner inside the building and then pour gasoline on the building and burn it.
It was a much more pragmatic attempt at an Internet attack, given that all the
servers that control all the U.K.'s Internet traffic are all in the same
building. We are not that much further ahead here.
Mr. Rudner: I want to add one thing to Mr. Quiggin's important point
on the Internet. Not only is the Internet a method of attack, but it has been an
important instrument for recruitment.
Senator Furey: For important proselytizing.
Mr. Rudner: Both proselytizing and recruitment. For example, Anwar
al-Awlaki, an American-born individual now in Yemen, has two major
proselytization programs on the Internet that have had a powerful influence,
including here in Canada. One is "The Constants of Jihad'' and the other is "44
Ways to Support Jihad.'' They have a theoretical doctrine and tactical doctrine
available for anyone who can play with a mouse.
Senator Nolin: I want to go back to Mr. Hutchinson's answer to my
colleague, Senator Joyal. The question was about discretion in comparing
"regular'' crimes and Criminal Code infractions and terrorist criminal
As you know, the infraction of terrorism already includes a notion of
motivation. We had a discussion a few years ago as to whether we remove the
motivation — be it religious, or all the details when we first adopted the law
many years ago, in 2001. Should we remove that reference?
Mr. Hutchinson: It is an interesting question. Any legal definition —
Senator Joyal: It is too complicated; it causes a problem for the
Mr. Hutchinson: Yes, but it both includes and excludes certain things.
Senator Nolin: That was my question. What does it add to the evidence
needed to support an infraction?
Mr. Hutchinson: In legal terms, there might not be much that the
definition adds. We identified it post 9/11 because we were borrowing language
from similar legislation in the United States at first. Also, legal documents
are part of the understanding we had at the time of what was going on; this was
a political-type crime. It was different from regular crimes we come into
I worry about legal definitions and I always question them because they draw
lines about which activities are prosecutable and which are not. If that
motivational factor is not there, is it still legally a "terrorist act''?
Senator Nolin: That is the core of my question: Should we maintain the
definition? We both accept that the criminal motivation, the mens rea, is
there. We came to the conclusion that adding another hurdle —
Senator Joyal: Were we creating an obstacle to serving the purpose we
wanted it to serve?
Senator Nolin: Exactly.
Mr. Hutchinson: I had not thought about it that way. That is an
interesting way to put it.
The Chair: In our last session, our colleague, Senator Tkachuk, used
the example of someone walking into a supermarket to commit armed robbery and
who may, with his shotgun, kill five or six people in the process. You will
correct me if I am wrong, Senator Tkachuk. He argued it is different from
someone who walks into a school to kill a bunch of kids for a political process.
That crime is a different crime and we need to be able to deal with it
I do not disagree with the question put by Senator Nolin, which reflects
prior discussions in this committee about what would add to the prophylactic and
prosecutorial activity. However, a point was made by one of our colleagues that
they are, in the public's mind, very different offences.
Senator Joyal: One seeks a personal benefit; the person entering a
shopping centre has a goal to take the goods. However, the other person kills X
number of people for a political purpose, which is essentially what existed in
the definition struck by the court. Justice Rutherford in Ontario struck that
definition. They removed the proof of the ideological objective that the person
was having in perpetrating the murders or the damages that the person intended
That is the difference between the mens rea, which is the ill intent,
and the ideologies behind the ill intent. That is where there is a nuance
between the two. People in the general public understand that; it is clearly
understood that if someone commits a crime for the objective of personal gain or
for a specific objective related to the person who is targeted, it is different
than someone who perpetrates a crime to attack the overall political or societal
order, which is where terrorism enters.
The Chair: Does anyone on the panel care to respond to Senator Nolin's
Senator Joyal: I am sorry to interrupt you, Senator Nolin, but we had
those discussions and we seem to be repeating them because the system does not
seem to reflect that.
The Chair: Is there any advice anyone on the panel cares to offer?
Mr. Rudner: As a non-lawyer, one would hesitate going into the law,
but it seems to me the question of motivation can be helpful for prosecutions,
if one thinks of the terrorism cycle beyond only the terrorist attack; for
example, propaganda, indoctrination, recruitment or terrorism finance. Often the
money is raised in Canada by a non- governmental organization. The NGO will not
fund an attack in Canada, but it could fund an attack in Sri Lanka, Morocco or
wherever. To have motivation as part of the legislation could enable prosecution
for each phase of the terrorism cycle that happens in Canada, whereas if we do
not have it and rely only on a physical, criminal assault in Canada, we have
narrowed our capacity to deal with this terrorism cycle.
The Chair: I want the panel to reflect on that issue of lawful
disruption versus prosecutorial prophylactic activity. I raise that issue
because if we look at the Toronto 18, clearly undercover officers and others in
support of the security services penetrated a group that may have ended up being
capable of inflicting serious damage, and a prosecution was achieved and
disruption took place before the damage took place.
Do we have the capacity in your judgment, based on your assessment of our
security forces, to prevent enough of that activity in enough of the
circumstances that may be central to the threat that we face on the spectrum, or
do the Toronto 18 become the exception that proves the rule that we are
resourced insufficiently in some of these areas?
Mr. Quiggin: First, I will give some background. A term is floated
around the international community frequently now called "the duty to
prosecute.'' It basically means that it is not enough to disrupt an organization
if they are trying to carry out an attack; to maintain the public confidence and
to have the judicial system function properly, we have to move that situation to
a prosecution phase so justice is not only done, it is seen to be done.
Having said that, I believe you are correct. The ability to reach the
standard in Canada is exceptionally difficult; to prove an act beyond a
reasonable doubt. In the case of Momin Khawaja that was accomplished. The case
in Quebec and the Toronto 18 all prove that it can be done, albeit with
It has been my experience in the past, having worked with law enforcement,
that the concept of disruption is still a valid concept, whether it is done by
intelligence or police agencies, and we will have to rely on it. Often, during
an investigation, one way to disrupt the potential act is to knock on the door
of someone and ask if that person is involved in a plot with that person over
there or in some sort of terrorist activity. Of course, the individual will say
no, but we know that the instant we close the door, the individual will run over
to see the buddy, and they know they are found out so the plot stops.
As an objective, I say we should maintain that high standard. We need to look
at that duty to prosecute. That is where we need to aim, but with the
understanding that we will fall short regularly.
Mr. Rudner: Let me reinforce Mr. Quiggin's point by also mentioning
that in the British experience, there were cases where sufficient cause was not
found, disruption did not take place nor did arrests, and terrorist incidents
happened. The British experience was to design a strategy that they currently
call Contest 2, which has the four Ps: protect, prepare, pursue and prevent. I
would add a fifth P for Canada — prosecute. Each of these Ps, I believe, is a
legitimate element in counter-terrorism, whether by intelligence or law
enforcement, to make sure that the public safety is ensured. For some types of
cases, I do not believe we will achieve a prosecutorial standard but we can
achieve a protection standard or a pursue standard.
The phrase used in the intelligence community is "the tool box;'' use the
tool box for all five Ps to protect the national security and public safety of
Mr. Hutchinson: I do not have too much to add. My senior colleagues
know a fair bit more about the security intelligence community than I do,
obviously. However, there is that element of moral condemnation to sentencing,
or at least to prosecuting, these types of crimes. I think it needs to happen on
a somewhat regular basis. However, I agree that it could be considered also as
part of a continuum of counterterrorist strategies. The prosecution of these
cases will happen regularly because we have to reaffirm in some ways our sense
of moral condemnation of that type of act, but the variety of strategies also
should be considered as useful, if not as legitimate. We will not always be
successful in prosecuting these things in court.
The Chair: Members of the panel, Mr. Quiggin, Mr. Rudner, Mr.
Hutchinson, thank you for the time you have made available to us. It has been
helpful. I know that my colleagues share that gratitude. I believe it is also
fair to say that all of us, regardless of what criticisms and concerns we have
about the integration of our national security operations, want to wish both our
uniformed and other security officials working so hard over the next few days
every success in preventing difficult things from happening, and protecting not
only our international guests but Canadians from whatever threats may exist. I
know that is the view of this entire committee.
Colleagues, now that we have second reading of Bill S-7, our steering
committee will meet to discuss the process for next week when we are planning on
having the minister and officials, and then, how we proceed thereafter. We will
be return to you between now and next week to ensure we are comfortable with the
plans moving forward.
(The committee adjourned.)