What the heck is going on in Kenya? (II)


 

Dalton McGuinty gets angry. The Canadian Press tries to sort out what Messrs Van Loan and Cannon are doing.

So far, Foreign Affairs Minister Lawrence Cannon and Public Safety Minister Peter Van Loan have avoided comment about Mohamud’s case.

Chris McCluskey, a spokesman for Van Loan, would only say that the minister has asked the Canada Border Services Agency and his department for a full account of what happened.

An agency spokeswoman said Mohamud’s case has been transferred to Foreign Affairs.

According to CBC, Cannon hasn’t entirely avoided comment. On July 24 he told reporters there was “no tangible proof” of Mohamud’s citizenship and that “all Canadians who hold passports generally have a picture that is identical in their passport to what they claim to be.” The Star has quoted him as having said that “the individual … has to let us know whether or not she is a Canadian citizen.”


 

What the heck is going on in Kenya? (II)

  1. What we really need is a post about Omar Khadr.

    • You really need is a diaper change.

      • It takes a very special kind of creep to be as gleefully indifferent to the misfortunes of others as you are, scf. On the one hand, the human being in me hopes that what's happened to this woman or Omar Khadr never happens to you, but on the other hand, the scf in me sort of hopes it does.

        • Wow, you lefty guys have vivid imaginations, you go off on wild tangents based on your prejudices. Fascinating.

          • You started off the discussion on a tangent.

            Just sayin'…

      • no kidding.

        but scf is a birther.

        • What does that mean? Sounds familiar.

      • What's contemptible? Aaron's 50 posts on Khadr or my request for number 51? And why?

        • lets try to make this real simple for you scf. Aaron is a reporter. he writes about things that are/should be in the news. Omar Khadr is in the news (not as much as he should be) for his alledged crime; his treatment relative to his age relative to US law relative to international treatise that we are signatories to; and the PUSA's intentions to close Guantanamo and the unresolved issue of what . so, while you might not agree with Aaron's perspective he is – and this is where is gets tricky – doing his job.

          Your post on the other demeans a fellow citizen that who been treated unfairly and inappropriately by the Kenyan and Canadian officials and by your beloved Conservative cabinet ministers. Your post dismisses the seriousness of our failings in the treatment of this woman in two ways. First it draws an implicit link between Aaron's analysis of the Mohamud and Khadr cases. By sarcastically dismissing the virtue of Aaron's work on Khadr with your request you are also dismiss his suggestion that Mohamud has been wronged.

          But way more egregious, your (notwithstanding that you will deny) post dismisses her worthiness to have her rights as a Canadian citizen upheld by implicitly suggesting their is equivalence between Khadr and Mohamud. While I personally think Khadr has been wronged and we have failed to live up to our international obligations, TJ's post below is an excellent summation of how ridiculously Mohamud has been treated (and thus how offensive the CPC's treatment of her is). Her only offense seems to be having the misfortune of being governed by a government not interested in ensuring her rights until they could not possibly avoid doing so (whereas Khadr may well have committed a serious offense).

        • lets try to make this real simple for you scf. Aaron is a reporter. he writes about things that are/should be in the news. Omar Khadr is in the news (not as much as he should be) for his alledged crime; his treatment relative to his age relative to US law relative to international treatise that we are signatories to; and the PUSA's intentions to close Guantanamo and the unresolved issue of what happens to Khadr . so, while you might not agree with Aaron's perspective he is – and this is where is gets tricky – doing his job.

          Your post on the other demeans a fellow citizen that who been treated unfairly and inappropriately by the Kenyan and Canadian officials and by your beloved Conservative cabinet ministers. Your post dismisses the seriousness of our failings in the treatment of this woman in two ways. First it draws an implicit link between Aaron's analysis of the Mohamud and Khadr cases. By sarcastically dismissing the virtue of Aaron's work on Khadr with your request you are also dismiss his suggestion that Mohamud has been wronged.

          But way more egregious, your (notwithstanding that you will deny) post dismisses her worthiness to have her rights as a Canadian citizen upheld by implicitly suggesting their is equivalence between Khadr and Mohamud. While I personally think Khadr has been wronged and we have failed to live up to our international obligations, TJ's post below is an excellent summation of how ridiculously Mohamud has been treated (and thus how offensive the CPC's treatment of her is). Her only offense seems to be having the misfortune of being governed by a government not interested in ensuring her rights until they could not possibly avoid doing so (whereas Khadr may well have committed a serious offense).

        • lets try to make this real simple for you scf. Aaron is a reporter. he writes about things that are/should be in the news. Omar Khadr is in the news (not as much as he should be) for his alledged crime; his treatment relative to his age relative to US law relative to international treatise that we are signatories to; and the PUSA's intentions to close Guantanamo and the unresolved issue of what happens to Khadr . so, while you might not agree with Aaron's perspective he is – and this is where is gets tricky – doing his job.

          Your post on the other hand demeans a fellow citizen that who been treated unfairly and inappropriately by the Kenyan and Canadian officials and by your beloved Conservative cabinet ministers. Your post dismisses the seriousness of our failings in the treatment of this woman in two ways. First it draws an implicit link between Aaron's analysis of the Mohamud and Khadr cases. By sarcastically dismissing the virtue of Aaron's work on Khadr with your request you are also dismiss his suggestion that Mohamud has been wronged.

          But way more egregious, your (notwithstanding that you will deny) post dismisses her worthiness to have her rights as a Canadian citizen upheld by implicitly suggesting their is equivalence between Khadr and Mohamud. While I personally think Khadr has been wronged and we have failed to live up to our international obligations, TJ's post below is an excellent summation of how ridiculously Mohamud has been treated (and thus how offensive the CPC's treatment of her is). Her only offense seems to be having the misfortune of being governed by a government not interested in ensuring her rights until they could not possibly avoid doing so (whereas Khadr may well have committed a serious offense).

        • lets try to make this real simple for you scf. Aaron is a reporter. he writes about things that are/should be in the news. Omar Khadr is in the news (not as much as he should be) for his alledged crime; his treatment relative to his age relative to US law relative to international treatise that we are signatories to; and the PUSA's intentions to close Guantanamo and the unresolved issue of what happens to Khadr . so, while you might not agree with Aaron's perspective he is – and this is where is gets tricky – doing his job.

          Your post on the other hand demeans a fellow citizen that who been treated unfairly and inappropriately by Kenyan and Canadian officials and by your beloved Conservative cabinet ministers. Your post dismisses the seriousness of our failings in the treatment of this woman in two ways. First it draws an implicit link between Aaron's analysis of the Mohamud and Khadr cases. By sarcastically dismissing the virtue of Aaron's work on Khadr with your request you are also dismiss his suggestion that Mohamud has been wronged.

          But way more egregious, your (notwithstanding that you will deny) post dismisses her worthiness to have her rights as a Canadian citizen upheld by implicitly suggesting their is equivalence between Khadr and Mohamud. While I personally think Khadr has been wronged and we have failed to live up to our international obligations, TJ's post below is an excellent summation of how ridiculously Mohamud has been treated (and thus how offensive the CPC's treatment of her is). Her only offense seems to be having the misfortune of being governed by a government not interested in ensuring her rights until they could not possibly avoid doing so (whereas Khadr may well have committed a serious offense).

          • Well put.

          • It's a shame so many people have to waste their time clearing up the rubbish that crank scf leaves here.

          • I've been ignoring him for months now.

          • I've been ignoring him for months now, but I'm glad SnM took him on in such an articulate manner.

          • Grow a brain.

          • Now, since I did not say explicitly why I am petitioning for another Khadr post, and you guys think you are so smart that you can just make up the reasons based on your silly prejudices, I suppose I might as well.

            Aaron loves to jump on these types of bandwagons. It's a pattern. Find someone, somewhere, who has had a bad experience dealing with the Canadian government. The worse the experience, the better. Could be immigration, could be customs, could be any other government department. Aaron is not the only one who does it – all you gotta do is read the Toronto Star daily for the propaganda and you'll find a story sooner or later.

            Go on and on and on and on and on and on and on and on about how this is such a horrible thing. Mention by name the government official in charge of the ministry which is in charge of the department which is in charge of the group that performed the awful deed.

          • Your post on the other hand demeans a fellow citizen that who been treated unfairly and inappropriately

            No. I am commenting on Aaron's choice of posts. And if you want my opinion on this lady in Kenya, I wrote it down under his first post about the topic. But I am not talking about that at all.

            implicitly suggesting their is equivalence between Khadr and Mohamud

            No, that is your fevered imagination. That is what I mean by 'tangents' based on 'prejudices'. Go to the movies for your consporacy theories.

          • BS. you are commenting in this specific thread for a reason. and, before you went dropping your vitriol you made no attempt to distinguish the cases, refrence you opinion on the case at hand or summarize it here or, at a minimum, state that you know that there is a distinction between this case and that of Khadr.

            And is bloody well further evident in that the following posts essentially take up Cannon's position: that this woman did not have her sh#t together because other people lie sometimes. She's just like 'them' (whoever them actually are). Except that she did have her sh#t together.

            Aaron is not indirectly maligning Cannon et al through the work of the department. He is using the work of the Star article to make clear that the 'awful deed' includes the actions of Cannon himself. He maligned this woman when she had diligently honestly and, as we now know, correctly made her case. But blame everyone else. It was the airline that refused to recognize 12 other pieces of ID when she asked to come home and see her kid right. I can't wait for the lawsuit, frankly.

            You, sir, are brutally low.

          • You sir, are completely out to lunch. I did not write the following posts. I wrote the first post. How on earth do you think that a) I am clairvoyant and b) I am responsible for what other people write?

            Secondly, I my post was unclear, then why on earth would you respond with a complete fabrication of my position? Antsy?

            The rest of your comments are the same old brainless claptrap.

          • i was referring to your subsequent posts from the 4 or 5 replies you fired off all at the same time. and I don't think your post was ambiguous in the least, you, like Canon et al, think the government's treatment of Suaad Hagi Mohamud was acceptable/can be easily explained away (i.e., sometimes people like about their passport). i think it was deplorable.

          • i was referring to your subsequent posts from the 4 or 5 replies you fired off all at the same time. and I don't think your post was ambiguous in the least, you, like Canon et al, think the government's treatment of Suaad Hagi Mohamud was acceptable/can be easily explained away (i.e., sometimes people like about their passport). i think it was deplorable.

            why don't you do us all a favour and go crawl back under the rock you came out from.

          • Hmmm. You, once again, have completely fabricated my position. Have you ever taken a debating class? You need one. Either that, or reading comprehension. If I wrote "it's a sunny day" you'd probably attack that too for being a shot at minorities, somehow. You see everything through your mindless partisan grey-coloured glasses. Your impression of reality is skewed and you are incapable of seeing what people are saying, instead you project your own thoughts into everyone else's words, regardless of whether it makes any sense to do so.

            You are like a sufferer of paranoia, who sees every action around himself as an attack on himself. It is a debilitating condition.

          • Now, let's face facts here. People will have bad experiences with the government, When you consider how many people enter the country on a daily basis, one of two of them, once in a while, will be refused entry, wrongly. Hundreds of other illegal migrants will be caught trying to use a fake passport, or someone else's passport. That is why passports have all those security features. Got it? In this case, the poor woman was not only refused entry, but treated poorly after that, very poorly. That must be making Aaron very happy, it was a good find, a very good find. He can milk this woman's experience til the cows come home. 50 posts, maybe more. Just like Khadr.

            Firstly, the airlines are the ones who fingered the lady as an imposter, not the government. Airlines deny flights to people all the time, because they are responsible for putting the person on a plane back to where they came from if the person is not admitted to Canada.

          • Why are people denied entry? Because frequent numbers of them, in fact, do try to sneak into the country on passports that are not their own. It happens all the time. So the government tries to stop it. Are they gonna get it right all the time? No. They will eventually make a mistake. Do they have a duty to try to catch illegal entrants? Yes. That is why you talk to a Canadian official when you enter the country.

            But frankly, I am not talking about the case anyway. I am talking about Aaron's blog. The 'professional' writers (the rest of them) on Maclean's do not prostitute themselves like this, turning themselves into propagandists. Only one of them does.

          • Where is the post about the number of people in African countries denied entry into Canada rightly? The ones using the fake passports? The ones using other people's passports? Where is the post that mentions the number of people entering Canada on a daily basis? You know, that thing they call, PERSPECTIVE? Where is the perspective? Where is the post that actually analyzes whether this has happened before, in the hundreds of instances where the same events occured? You know, the hundreds of times that airlines denied flights and Canadian officials intervened to get people back on flights?

            How about, for a little perspective, we bring up the Lebanon incident, where all those people were put on boats and planes by the government so that they could return to Canada?

            There is no perspective. None. Aaron is using this woman's experience for his own purposes. She is a tool, to use for his own purposes. Aaron doesn't care a fig about her. Not an ounce.

            All you lefties are so self-righteous. It's pathetic.

          • You have serious issues.

          • Glad you agree with me.

  2. Yup – Lawrence cannon as quoted by the Star: ""The individual has to be straightforward, has to let us know whether or not she is a Canadian citizen," Cannon said on July 24. "She's saying so, but there is no tangible proof …"

    Exactly. I mean, at that point all the evidence she had provided was her passport, "…her Ontario driver's licence, OHIP card, social insurance card and Canadian citizenship certificate… She showed her credit card, two bank cards, Shoppers Drug Mart Optimum card, Humber River Regional Hospital Card and a recent dry cleaning receipt from One Hour Brighten Cleaners on Lawrence Ave. W., near her Toronto address… She produced a letter from her Toronto employer, ATS courier service, about a recent promotion."

    Clearly the "Honorable" Mr. Cannon has a solid point – when was she going to stop playing games and provide officials with some useful supporting documentation? Thank god she stopped playing peek-a-boo and did the honorable thing: took her Canadian government to court to sue for the opportunity to prove her identity.

    Thank god we have standup men like Mr. Cannon defending Canada against these impostor citizens who dare to want to return home to their children.

    This whole episode makes me sick. I've never been so ashamed to be Canadian.

    • Please note – no accusations of racism in my post. I don't know what the hell is going on with the Harper government vis-a-vis brown-skinned Canadians abroad, but I don't think it's due to simple racism.

      I could be convinced (if anyone had any evidence at all, which is extremely unlikely) that the Cons are playing to their hardcore rightwing base, but I've seen nothing but speculation on that front.

      None of this makes me any less sick about the way Canadians abroad are being abandoned (or, at worst, deliberately screwed over) by their elected government while traveling abroad. In a just world, Mr. Cannon would spend 6 months in limbo in some filthy, violent prison while his country slow-walked his file and blamed him for his predicament.

      • I could be convinced (if anyone had any evidence at all, which is extremely unlikely) that the Cons are playing to their hardcore rightwing base, but I've seen nothing but speculation on that front.

        Nothing but disingenuous and malicious speculation, I might add.

      • "Never ascribe to malice that which can adequately be explained by incompetence" Napoleon

  3. This is all a Liberal conspiracy to kneecap TheGreatHarper.

    Lawrence Cannon was a Liberal, once dated a Liberal, probably still is a closet Liberal.

    Voila, the proof.

    • LOL. You forgot to mention that Lawrence Cannon comes from a pedigreed Establishment family with lots of illustrious Liberal ancestors.

      From wiki:
      Cannon is the son of government lawyer Louis Cannon and Quebec television broadcast pioneer Rosemary "Posie" Power, and the grandson of Lucien Cannon and Charles Gavan Power. He is also the grand-nephew of Lawrence Arthur Dumoulin Cannon, a long-time Liberal politician and Supreme Court judge. He is of Irish and French Canadian descent.

      The extended Cannon family has had strong regional and national political influence in Canada for over a century and is considered to be influential as one of Canada's hereditary ruling class families, members having served in positions as lawyers, judges, Supreme Court judges, senators, ministers of defence, solicitors general, and members of parliament. They have had large influence in the national resource industries, as "barons" in the lumber industry particularly, as well as in broadcasting.

      The most famous member of the family was Cannon's maternal grandfather, Charles "Chubby" Power, a confidante and Minister of National Defence for Air to Governor General John Buchan, 1st Baron Tweedsmuir in the Cabinet of Prime Minister Mackenzie King.

  4. First of all, let me say this is a terrible tragedy for the individual in this case and I hope that she can be assisted in any way possible. However, speaking as someone who held a consular commission in several overseas embassies during my life, it is important to remember that there are many cases of passport fraud that go undetected and that the previous Liberal government and current Conservative governemnt have come under pressure to halt passport fraud. It is not always easy for foreign immigration officials or Canadian consular officials to determine when a passport is fraudulent. This was almost certainly a decision made on the ground and it would have been very difficult for ministerial staff in Ottawa (regardless of whether they were Tory or Liberal) to intervene without more information.

    • Only, she possessed about a dozen pieces of evidence to corroborate her claim to citizenship.

      • Yes, but see 13 is the magic number. If you're overseas and run in to trouble you need THIRTEEN pieces of corroborating evidence in addition to your passport showing that you're really Canadian.

        Any random shlub can get twelve pieces of ID together while overseas. The government's just supposed to help her out when all she had to show them was her passport, her Ontario driver's license, her SIN card, her citizenship certificate, two credit cards, two bank cards, a letter from her employer… I mean, come on. What do citizens expect? That the government works for THEM???

        Geeze.

        If you're going to travel overseas with only a passport and a dozen more pieces of identification, OF COURSE you're going to be forced at some point to pay for a DNA test to prove who you REALLY are. Otherwise, the terrorists win.

        • Actually, apparently the government paid for the DNA test, so "Yay Canada!!!".

          I swear, the last few years of stories like this make me really quite nervous about ever leaving the country.

          • Wellyou only apparently need to fear if you are some combination of: a) non-white; b) muslim, c) have a funny-sounding name, d) are visiting an obscure, non-european country.

            I don't know if it is overt racism on the part of the Harpercrites, but rather a latent racism on the part of their base, whereby picking up for these people from categories a,b,c or d above may be viewed with some sort of suspicion, and is just not a political winner.

      • Maybe she looked TOO prepared to justify her citixzenship…

        • That is very possible. People who are involved in fraud usually come prepared.

          As for the suggestion that this is an attempt by political level people to get involved that is ludicrous. This was a decision by local officials on the ground. It had nothing to do with political guidance. No doubt there is a need to reassess the policy guidelines for dealing with fraudulent passports, but I would not be surprised if this was just a case of someone doing their job and unfortunately, in this case, making a mistake.

          • Two Yen, after being kept waiting for two months, she has demonstrated through a DNA test that she's a Canadian. That was on Monday. Our govt officials have said that they will not produce any papers for her until she manages to get the Kenyan govt to drop charges against her. Charges, ming you, that were brought upon AT THE REQUEST of our CANADIAN OFFICIALS.

            You want to continue arguing that this is just a simple mistake?

      • Have you ever dealt with bureaucracy? I am guessing Mohamud got caught in one of the classic Catch-22's that bureaucracies around the world seem to love. Mohamud's passport was questioned/invalidated so she had no i.d. And to prove she's Canadian she needs passport. And contents of her purse – stubs from Toronto dry cleaner's, credit cards, driver's license – do not qualify as a substitute for passport.

        • Well, technically NOTHING qualifies as a substitute for a passport, and I wouldn't say that the dozen pieces of id she had should have automatically granted her passage back to the country. However, if the government questions your passport, what more are you supposed to provide them with than your driver's license, your SIN card and your CITIZENSHIP CERTIFICATE to at least get them to hold off on telling the local authorities that you're a fraud and should be detained and prosecuted?

          Do we really live in a country where our government will declare a passport invalid and the holder a fraud and turn her over to local authorities for prosecution because she LOST WEIGHT??? Are our passports really so insecure and easily forged that officials feel that even fingerprints (she agreed to be printed) are insufficient proof of one's identity? If all that's needed for a Canadian citizen to essentially be exiled and turn over for prosecution to a foreign government is for some consular official to say "Gee, you're right, she DOES look way thinner than the picture… let's ignore any corroborating evidence she has and turn her over to the Kenyans for prosecution" then my passport ain't worth spit (which I've been beginning to suspect for a while now).

          I for one thank God I have dual citizenship, and therefore a passport that matters.

  5. I am interested to see what the government's response to this disgrace is, vis-a-vis ministerial accountability. When L'Affaire Raitt surfaced, people asked why ministerial accountability should continue to be part of our parliamentary tradition. This case shows why. If bad protocol is in place for assisting citizen like Ms. Mohamud, the minister is responsible for responding and, ultimately, changing the protocol. If a mistake has been made, the minister is the person with the ultimate authority to correct it. This is why some of us care about ministerial accountability in all matters, regardless of scale. Unless the actions of lower-level officials are malicious, I don't want Lawrence Cannon punting the blame for this issue down to some foreign service officer. He's the minister, and he is responsible for making sure our citizens aren't treated in this way while out of the country.

    • Wait… there's someone in the Cabinet who's supposed to be responsible for helping to protect Canadians who are overseas???

      What evidence is there for that contention?

      • Please produce at least 13 pieces of evidence.

  6. "Dalton McGuinty gets angry."

    Hahahahaha. I am sure McGuinty getting 'angry' has nothing at all to do with this morning's revelations about his role in appointing Sarah Kramer and trying to deflect attention. Too bad McGuinty doesn't get angry about the millions of $$$ he and his cronies have wasted instead of trying to involve himself in an affair that he knows nothing about.

    • *yawn*

    • Right on exactly what i was thinking i guess this takes the heat off of the whole Ehealth scandal until its time to move on to the next one i hope he has a better rain coat when the proverbial crap flies but then again somehow it seem to shoot over him and hit someone else go figure i think he has some invisible shield like all the politicians seem to but unfortunately we are running out of good politicians to pick from ones who haven't been tainted thinking they earn their halos by smiling that fake grin of theirs and sing doo dah all the way to the bank

      • Punctuation: Use it.

        • Punctuation: doesn't penetrate the tinfoil hats.

  7. I believe all of these incidents arise from a consistent belief within this Cabinet that the micro-management of individual cases is preferred to consistent oversight of policy. Goodyear intervenes on a conference about genetics, Clement gets involved in gay pride events etc. Some of these are comical, most are merely financial but in the cases of Canadians abroad they are leading to contemptible behaviour.
    Cook, Crit and Joylon have a little back and forth about whether this treatment of Canadians abroad is racially motivated (either directly or as appeasement to the racist component of the Conservative base) or simply incompetence. However Joylon is incorrect in presenting this as an either-or proposition. Ongoing racism inside an organization is virtually always a direct result of incompetence. The simple statistics of how white and non-white Canadians that get into problems abroad makes it clear that the government's actions in these matters has a racist component even if the motivation of individual ministers is not racial.

    • Do you know anything at all about this case other than what her lawyers/supporters have told the Tor Star? I am guessing you don't, so I am not sure why you feel comfortable smearing 35% of Canadians who vote for Con as being racist based on one sided facts.

      I am happy to listen to arguments that Cons are not doing enough for all 1,800 citizens in jail abroad but the racism canard that libs/progs are so quick to accuse others of is tiresome. Kenyan authorities started this – are you saying Kenyan authorities are racist? And do you have any idea at all what colour/ethnicity our Consular staff are in Kenya? Once the wheels get set in motion, I am willing to bet Consular authorities have been following what's written in their handbook on how to handle this type of situation.

      You make it seem like Kenyan border control has a direct line to Kenney's office and they called up and said a black woman is claiming to be Canadian and Kenney said 'WHAT! A black woman is claiming to be Canadian? Impossible! OFF WITH HER HEAD!' and it's just too stupid for words.

      I think when lefties claim racism, they are just projecting their neurosis and not really analyzing what others may or may not think.

      • I certainly apologize that my post has been interpreted as equating conservative philosophy with racism, it is not what I believe, so clearly my communication ability is wanting. In my defence I did try to be careful in what exactly I wrote, i.e. "the racist component of the Conservative base". In my opinion, there is a clear tendency for the white racist elements to gravitate towards the Conservative party. This is unfortunate but likely inevitable given the policies and positions that naturally flow from a conservative position. I do not believe that the majority of Conservative supporters are racist; I do believe that the majority of racists that support a major political party support the Conservatives.
        To his credit (and I don't tend to give him much) Mulroney recognized this and was vigilant as leader in suppressing this element of the party. (as did Clark and Stanfield) Harper has been wanting on this issue and the recent use of party machinery to protect the incumbent in Calgary West did not help. It is hard for this current Conservative caucus let alone the base to make the case that they have been proactive in promoting tolerance.

  8. I`m continually amazed how many of the folks on this blog use their wild and partisan imaginations to come up with twisted reasons why events may happen.

    A consular offical in a village outside Nairobi Kenya is told to be more vigilent when examining documents because its been shown that phony I D papers can now easily be produced so people are entering the country illegally. The consular offical might overact in this case but the increased vigilance is good policy.

    No racism here—–no incompetence by Cannon or Van Loan—–just Wherry stirring up phantom s–t and watching you guys fling it.

    • Most of us would find it pretty hard to shrug and accept this if it were ourselves or a loved one in Mohamud's shoes. Agreed that racism isn't a factor, but this government has established something of a track record in letting citizens languish at the mercy of kangaroo courts and politicized detentions. The incompetence may be mainly a failure to communicate their intentions and strategy properly, but it's incompetence nevertheless.

      • This "track record" is in your fevered imagination.

        • That's a seriously ugly baby.

    • The specifics of the case contradict whatever sense there may be, generically, in what you say.

      • How so? It sounds to me like the onus was placed on Mohamud to prove her identity by Canadian officials, or more precisely Canadian officials bought the Kenyan version uncritically. It seems to fit their pattern of hands-off uninvolvement when Canadian citizens find themselves at the mercy of questionable foreign agencies. Sometimes this approach is justified, but the Conservative's tendency to garble communications around these events isn't helpful to anybody.

        • My reply was to William's comment, not yours. In general, his second paragraph might be a reasonable early take, until someone brought more evidence to the story. However, it is apparent that the story already has that evidence – meaning the several other pieces of identification and related evidence – to make her situation more sympathetic. In other words, I agree that an initial reaction to the story should be to be skeptical, give the local guy a break for doing his job under difficult conditions etc… but that in this case the additional information is enough to say no, there;s more to this than just overzealous caution.

          I don't know enough to agree or disagree with you on the governemnt's past record.

          • Sorry! I get confused by flow charts. :)

          • ditto, no worries.

    • the increased vigilance is good policy.

      Really? Because it seems to me that it apparently yields false positives and deprives Canadian citizens of the rights that go along with holding a Canadian passport. That, to me, seems like an awfully bad outcome, so the policy can't be all that good.

      No-one is claiming that any ministers or officials are personally racist. However, the very system of "increased vigilance" you advocate could be applied in a way that perpetuates systemic racism, framed as "risk mitigation." This possibility concerns me.

  9. That would explain the initial rejection, perhaps a one week delay. It has been a lot longer than that.

  10. Kenya is a failing state that is being proped up by western countries trying to stem the Chinese influence in Africa. The corruption is such that bribes are expected at every level. Unfortunately, the Somali lady thouught that by being a Canadian she was immune and her adopted home would stand for her. I think she now understands the true nature of the Canadian government treatment of everyone trying to Canada if you are not coming from Hong Kong with bags or money or from Europe to replenish the white stock in Canada.
    Why would the Canadian Officials not be proactive to help her while that is what they are paid to and have a general idea of the level of corruption?

  11. It should be Ignatieff's comments making the headlines – not McGuinty's. I don't need to know the details of the Liberals electoral platform before an election call – but I do need to hear, and loudly, from the leader of the official opposition.

    • I don't know if you noticed Loraine but this Liberal leader needs an average of 10 days to respond to anything.

  12. RE: Brenda Martin. It's not as if the government immediately sent in the jet the moment the news about her broke. They fended off pressure for quite a long time before going and getting her. IIRC, they even had Geurgis down in Mexico for an unrelated event, and had the Opposition at their throats for the fact she never raised Martin's case while there.

    I don't think this is really a racism issue, it's a philosophical issue of jurisdiction. The government tends to believe that what you do outside Canada is on you, and it's not up to the government to come to your aid if you screw up. It's a parallel with their tough on crime beliefs. The unfortunate thing is the government has been pulling a guilty until proven innocent attitude, and have failed to adequetely aid those being held, unfairly, in other countries.

    While the government being MIA is no surprise, where's the Opposition?

  13. Great, so they are incompetent – stop voting for them.

    • Tiamat, you don't get it. By suggesting that this is about incompetence, jolyon is redirecting blame towards the "liberal bureaucracy."

  14. Did everyone know you can't actually say sh*t on here????

  15. Did everyone know you can't actually say sh*t on here????

    But you still get a +1 for trying… awesome.

    • Really? No sh*t.

    • Really? No sh*t.

  16. I'm still waiting for Lisa MacLeod to weigh in and blame the decision by the consular officer on the fact that Mohamud is a woman.

  17. Excellent point.

  18. It's hard to believe how stupid federal bureaucrats, especially consular and immigration staff, suddenly became in early February, 2006. Suddenly certain Canadians started to become stranded and abandoned by Canada while abroad. Strange thing, that.

  19. Here's some food for thought, questions that a real reporter or journalist would at least attempt to ask:
    -how often are people turned away for using false passports (fake or someone else's)?
    -how often in poor countries like Kenya?
    -is there an emphasis on turning them away before they get on the plane?
    -what are the normal procedures in such cases (burden of proof, follow up actions when a person is suspected of using a false passport)?
    -did the normal procedure break down, and where?
    -is it unusual for someone to impersonate another person, which is what the officials seemed to think was happening?
    -how often are mistakes made by the officials, and how often are mistakes not made? Where there illegal travelers attempting to board the same flight? Others that day in that airport? Was there anything that influenced the wrong decision to deny passage of this lady?
    -if it is considered necessary to alert authorities, can the Canadian officials try to ensure proper due process for the individual?

    • Thanks, scf, those are indeed great questions. The answers would greatly help in determining what changes, if any, Canda needs to make in order to eliminate or at least reduce the probability that this type of incident occurs in the future. Perhaps the system is as good as it can be, and this is just one of those very unfortunate cases that will occur over time.

      At this stage it is very difficult for me to be certain that there was any malicious behaviour involved in this case.