Chris Selley considers.
The fact that Harper gets away with it so easily—like Paul Martin and Jean Chrétien before him—is proof that most Canadians don’t actually care about child soldiers. They care about anonymous child soldiers with anonymous victims. Faced with a fellow citizen who suffered the same basic scenario they so abhor in Africa, many of us—the Prime Minister among them—rule out mercy as a matter of principle. Of the many insights into the national character Omar Khadr’s case has provided, this is easily the most perplexing.