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Re: WHY???

Post by Teentitan on Thu 13 Jul 2017, 16:42

So let me get this straight....Trudeau was "worried" about the cost of fighting Kahdr in court? Yet he has no F'N problem spending money fighting veterans in court?!?!?!? The veterans who he said should not have to go to court to get benefits?

Yeah the real genius got elected as PM!
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Trudeau feels blowback from $8m Khadr settlement

Post by Guest on Thu 13 Jul 2017, 16:08

US & Canada

Trudeau feels blowback from $8m Khadr settlement

July 13, 2017

Fifteen years after being captured, Omar Khadr is still a lightning rod for the Canadian conscience.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau's decision to give C$10.5m ($8m; £6m) to the former Guantanamo Bay prisoner has proved divisive, even in his own party.

Meanwhile, a lawsuit from an American soldier's widow continues to draw the case out.

Canadian-born Khadr, 30, was captured in 2002 in Afghanistan at the age of 15, and spent a decade in Guantanamo.

He pleaded guilty to throwing the grenade that killed US Army Sgt Christopher Speer in 2010, but later recanted, saying he only confessed so that he could be released from Guantanamo and transferred to a Canadian prison.

He was released on bail in 2015.

That same year, a Utah judge awarded Mr Speer's widow Tabitha Speer $134m in a wrongful-death suit. Payment is pending an Ontario court decision on whether the lawsuit is enforceable, based on jurisdictional concerns.

After Khadr's settlement was announced, Mrs Speer petitioned an Ontario court to freeze his assets until the jurisdictional matters are decided in court. The Ontario judge called this request "extraordinary" and refused to grant the injunction.

Khadr has been a divisive figure in Canada from the start - some say he was a child soldier who was wrongfully imprisoned and mistreated in Guantanamo Bay.

Others, including former Prime Minister Stephen Harper, called him a terrorist and a traitor and believe that he should have been prosecuted to the full extent of the law.

Profile: Omar Khadr

Canada's Supreme Court twice found that the Canadian government had violated his constitutional rights and Khadr subsequently sued the Canadian government for C$20m.

Last week, the Canadian government offered an apology and a multi-million dollar settlement in recompense. Although some have applauded Mr Trudeau's decision to settle with Khadr, many others have voiced their displeasure.

Veterans in Halifax, Nova Scotia, protested against the settlement during a city parade, and called the large sum a "slap in the face".
"My son who served over there is now released with PTSD. He gets support from VAC (Veterans Affairs Canada), but not enough. He didn't get $10.5 million," said veteran Jay Tofflemire.

An online poll of 1,512 Canadians conducted by Angus Reid between July 7 and 10 found that more than 70% of Canadians thought Trudeau should have fought the settlement in court.

Most worrying for Mr Trudeau is that 61% of Canadians who said they voted for him in 2015 also disagreed with the settlement.
Canada paid $8m to Omar Khadr

Ex-Guantanamo detainee to get apology

Howard Anglin, a former policy advisor to Mr Trudeau's predecessor, Stephen Harper, told the BBC this decision could be turned against him in future elections.

"I can only assume they weren't aware of how badly this would play with Canadians," he said.
Mr Anglin said even if Khadr was mistreated in Guantanamo Bay, it's a hard to understand why Canadian tax dollars should go towards his settlement.

"Canada's involvement in this is so attenuated, so vanishingly attenuated, that we should not be the ones paying for this," he said.
But other legal experts disagree.

"Blame-throwing against either the Supreme Court or the government, or both, is easy when legal and constitutional choices are in fact limited or non-existent," Eugene Meehan, a lawyer and former legal officer at the Supreme Court told the BBC in an email.

Mr Meehan cites the case of Ivan Henry, who was awarded C$8m in 2016 at trial for being wrongfully convicted and imprisoned for almost 27 years. Although Khadr's case is not identical, he said, it's reasonable to guess that his settlement at trial would also be in the millions.

With legal costs defending the government's treatment of Khadr already mounting to millions, Meehan thinks the settlement may have just been the most practical course of action.

"The practical legal bottom-line here is: pay now or wait and pay more later - the same choice we all make when deciding to go to the dentist," he said.


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Canada judge rejects U.S. widow's bid to freeze ex-Guantanamo detainee's assets

Post by Guest on Thu 13 Jul 2017, 16:02

JULY 13, 2017 / 3:10 PM / 2 HOURS AGO

Canada judge rejects U.S. widow's bid to freeze ex-Guantanamo detainee's assets

By Anna Mehler Paperny

(Reuters) - A judge in Ontario on Thursday rejected a bid by a U.S. soldier's widow and an injured veteran to freeze the assets of a Canadian citizen who last week received C$10.5 million ($8.24 million) in a settlement with the Canadian government over its role in his decade-long detention at the U.S. military base at Guantanamo Bay.

Omar Khadr was held at Guantanamo after his 2002 capture in Afghanistan. He was charged with throwing the grenade that killed U.S. Army Sergeant Christopher Speer in 2002, when Khadr was 15 years old. He pleaded guilty to murder but later recanted and said he was coerced into making the plea.

Last week, Canada formally apologized to Khadr as part of a settlement in a C$20 million civil suit he filed against the Canadian government.

The soldier's widow Tabitha Speer, along with retired special forces Sergeant Layne Morris, who was injured in the firefight, sued Khadr in Utah. They won a $134 million wrongful death judgment in 2015. Now they want an Ontario court to uphold that judgment, and sought an injunction aimed at freezing Khadr's assets ahead of hearings later this year.

Ontario Superior Court Judge Edward Belobaba dismissed that request.

Attorney David Winer said his clients Speer and Morris have sought an expedited hearing of the case. Khadr's lawyer said he expected hearings to take place this fall.

"It’s unusual to be able to seize anyone’s assets or freeze anyone’s assets before obtaining a judgment," said Khadr lawyer Nathan Whitling. "You have to have some pretty strong evidence to get this type of order, and they just didn’t have any evidence."

Winer said he was not surprised that his clients were unable to obtain the injunction, and would now focus on the upcoming hearing.

"Obviously everybody knows it's a very high test and a high standard to meet but we put our best foot forward," he said.

The deal with Khadr marked the fifth time the Canadian government has settled with citizens who were detained abroad following the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks in the United States. All five contended that Canadian law enforcement and security forces were complicit in their suffering.

In 2010, the Canadian Supreme Court said Canada had breached Khadr's rights by sending intelligence agents to interrogate him in Guantanamo and sharing the results with the United States.


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Trudeau says Khadr settlement troubles him, but it could have cost more

Post by Guest on Thu 13 Jul 2017, 15:22

Trudeau says Khadr settlement troubles him, but it could have cost more

Posted: Thursday, July 13, 2017 2:56 pm

Mike Blanchfield and Lee Berthiaume The Canadian Press

OTTAWA - Justin Trudeau says he shares the concerns of Canadians who object to reports of the government's multi-million dollar settlement with Omar Khadr.

But the prime minister says if the government hadn't settled with the former Guantanamo Bay inmate, it would have cost as much as $40 million to put an end to the case.

"I can understand Canadians' concerns about the settlement. In fact, I share those concerns about the money. That's why we settled," Trudeau said Thursday.

Khadr had filed a $20-million lawsuit against the government for violating his Charter rights, and has received an out-of-court settlement reportedly worth $10.5 million.

"If we had continued to fight this, not only would we have inevitably lost, but estimates range from $30 to $40 million that it would have ended up costing the government," Trudeau said.

"This was the responsible path to take."

Khadr was sent to the notorious U.S. prison after being captured during a firefight with U.S. forces in Afghanistan in 2002. He was 15 years old when he was wounded in a battle in which U.S. Sgt. Chris Speer was killed and fellow Delta Force soldier Layne Morris was blinded in one eye.

Khadr was interrogated in 2003 and 2004 by Canadian intelligence officials. Khadr says his jailers threatened him with rape and kept him in isolation, and once used him as a human mop to wipe up urine.

Khadr, now 30, pleaded guilty to five war crimes before a widely condemned military commission at Guantanamo Bay in 2010. He said he agreed to the plea so he could get out of the American prison and return to Canada. He was released on bail in 2015 pending his appeal of the war crimes conviction.

In 2010, the Supreme Court of Canada ruled that Canadian officials violated Khadr's rights under the Charter of Rights and Freedoms during their interrogations. It found they were participating in the "then-illegal military regime" at Guantanamo.
The government payout has angered rank-and-file Canadians, as well as veterans groups, and has exposed the Liberals to scathing political attacks from the opposition Conservatives.

The Canadian Taxpayers Federation dropped off a petition at Trudeau's office Thursday bearing the signatures of more than 133,000 Canadians opposing the payout.

Trudeau said the lesson for future governments is that when they violate a Canadian's rights, everyone pays.
"The measure of a society — a just society — is not whether we stand up for people's rights when it's easy or popular to do so. It's whether we recognize rights when it's difficult, when it's unpopular."

A group of veterans also voiced their unhappiness, given their ongoing battles to seek compensation for injured ex-soldiers.
The most prominent is a class-action lawsuit in B.C. that alleges the government is violating the rights of today's veterans by refusing to give them the same lifetime disability pensions as previous generations.

Some veterans have also threatened to sue the government after the military forced them to take the anti-malarial drug mefloquine, which they say caused psychological damage.

"This justice we see with Khadr is something we would like to see ourselves," said John Dowe, who says he was forced to take mefloquine while serving in Somalia.

That sentiment was echoed by the Equitas Society, which is leading the legal battle in B.C. for a return to the lifetime disability pension that Trudeau promised to bring back in the last election.

"I know many Canadians are outraged by Mr. Khadr receiving over $10 million dollars of tax payer money," Equitas Society president Marc Burchell said in a statement.

"But every Canadian should be even more outraged that Prime Minister Trudeau is treating our disabled veterans so very poorly."


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Justin Trudeau places his trust in Omar Khadr

Post by Guest on Wed 12 Jul 2017, 12:20

Justin Trudeau places his trust in Omar Khadr

Special to The Globe and Mail
Published Wednesday, Jul. 12, 2017 10:28AM EDT
Last updated Wednesday, Jul. 12, 2017 11:34AM EDT

Andrew MacDougall, a former director of communications to Stephen Harper, is a communications consultant based in London.

The long-term political impact of the Omar Khadr settlement depends principally on one man: Omar Khadr.

If Mr. Khadr keeps his nose clean, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is likely to survive his decision to apologize and compensate the former child soldier and prisoner at Guantanamo Bay. If he does not, there could be hell to pay at the ballot box come 2019.

That is a lot of trust to place in a young man who spent his formative years following his father around terrorist training camps and living cheek by jowl with some of the most crazed jihadis on the planet.

Campbell Clark: In the court of public opinion, Canadians say Trudeau got it wrong on Omar Khadr settlement

The two years since Mr. Khadr’s release on bail seem to augur well for the Liberals. Mr. Khadr has kept out of trouble and clear of the media, no doubt helped by his onerous bail restrictions and residence in unshowy Edmonton.

But even with a reported $10.5-million in his pocket, the path forward is still exceedingly narrow. Every misstep, no matter how minor, will be noticed and amplified by the media and opposition parties.

If an offhand comment by Mr. Khadr on the bus rubs someone the wrong way and is posted to social media, it will kick off a storm. If Mr. Khadr loses his temper because of an incorrect order at the drive-thru, it will be noticed. Mr. Khadr will have to keep his cool even if he is accosted or provoked by a hostile citizen or media outlet.

Nor is his physical conduct the only land mine.

If Mr. Khadr now buys a car that is too flashy, a house or apartment that is too ostentatious, or even a Canada Goose parka that most Canadians without a settlement from their government cannot afford, he will (once again) face an online mob.

Even if Mr. Khadr were to contribute some of his money to the widow of U.S. Delta Force Sergeant Christopher Speer, or to a fund that helps Canadian veterans, it is not clear that help would be welcomed or appreciated. Short of handing it all over, any action would be seen as public relations.

The surest way to avoid these and other pitfalls is for Mr. Khadr to keep his head down, forget his money and start working hard and paying taxes. Mr. Khadr said in a recent interview that it has been hard to find jobs since his release, but he is now training as a nurse, a position that is hopefully in high demand.

Even if Mr. Khadr succeeds in doing all of these things, there are still other trapdoors for the Liberal government.

If Maha Elsamnah, the controversial matriarch of the Khadr family, or her other children say or do the wrong thing, it could also reflect badly on the government’s decision.

Mr. Khadr might have renounced his jihadi beliefs, but his eldest sister, Zaynab, for example, has a long record of extremist sympathy, including declarations of support for Osama bin Laden.

And then there are the more oblique angles.

What if Canada suffers another terrorist strike? What if jihadis were to proclaim the attack in Omar Khadr’s name, or if an enterprising jihadi chose to lob some grenades into a hospital? How many Canadians would link the two issues: settlement and attack, even if Mr. Khadr had nothing to do with them?

Mr. Trudeau can rest assured Andrew Scheer’s Conservatives will jump on every angle – no matter how tangential – if it means they can rub Mr. Trudeau’s nose in his decision. They smell blood and have public opinion on their side (for now).

Maddeningly for Mr. Trudeau, there isn’t much he can do to mitigate any of this fallout. All that can be done is to ride out the wave of discontent at the settlement and hope the issue fades from the national consciousness.

And, of course, hope Mr. Khadr does not revel in his new-found good fortune.


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Here’s a quarter, Mr. Khadr

Post by Guest on Wed 12 Jul 2017, 12:15

Here’s a quarter, Mr. Khadr


JULY 12, 2017 12:01 AM

If you ask any Canadian soldier, sailor or airman how much compensation Omar Khadr should have received from the federal government, given that the Supreme Court of Canada has ruled his Charter rights were violated, he could sue, I think you could sum up the dollar value he is due with that old country song: “Here’s a quarter, tell someone who cares.”

If the Canadian government must indeed pay some sort of compensation, a quarter just about sums it up. I would imagine most of the Canadian public, whose outcry has been loud and far reaching, would agree.

Even former prime minister Stephen Harper made public statements about this, an exceedingly rare occasion for a former PM to come out of retirement to criticize a government move.

The National Post’s John Iverson figures Harper, if he was still PM, would have litigated this forever without ever paying a cent to Khadr. Better to pay the money to blood sucking lawyers than someone convicted of terrorism.

Well, sorta convicted. That kangaroo court of a tribunal he went through made Soviet show trials look like justice.

Then there’s the sticky matter of his age. Since he was 15 at the time of his capture, he could legitimately be considered a child soldier.

Some things here that just don’t add up in most people’s common sense computations. How does the federal government shortchange vets of the Afghanistan mission, yet give Khadr the equivalent of a decent Lotto 6/49 payout? Did any of the families of our over 150 war dead in that mission get similar payouts? How about the wounded?

Did any of these thoughts cross the minds of the Supreme Court justices when they sided with Khadr? In their evaluation that he could sue for compensation, did any of them think what Canadian veterans, and their families, might think? Did the red-robed justices consider what this would do for the morale of our military?

I wonder how the discussions are going in the various officers and enlisted messes across the country these days, once a few stiff ones are imbibed.

And child soldier or not, most people would think he should consider himself lucky to be alive at all, having ended up at the business end of the United States’ military pointy end of the spear. For certain, he was fighting against Canadian allies in a war that had invoked the NATO charter. Firing at American soldiers, in this case, was the same as firing at Canadians.

The world turned upside down on Sept. 11, 2001. It’s hard to believe that was nearly 16 years ago now. Things were bound to get messy, and they did. Parents dragging their kids into firefights in farflung corners of the world, NATO invading a south-Asian country, President George Bush declaring war on as nebulous a concept as terror… where does it end?

Is that what the Trudeau cabinet decided? We have to put an end to this messy affair, and be damned with the optics?

It’s going to be damned hard for any Canadian serviceman to look Trudeau in the eye and not want to spit in his face. The sense of betrayal could not be more profound.

Remember Obama was going to close down Guantanamo Bay, where Khadr was incarcerated? How did that go? There is no easy answer. You couldn’t just line Gitmo’s prisoners against a wall and fire, as much as some people might have wanted to do just that.

So Khadr was eventually released, and is back in Canada. He can live his life.

But there’s no way he should have ever been given $10.5 million in compensation. His compensation is being able to breathe Canadian air again. That’s an awful lot more than a lot of other people got post 9/11.

So take your quarter, Mr. Khadr. And quietly disappear into obscurity. The rest of Canada really never, ever wants to hear of your ilk again.


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Who's to blame for the Khadr payout?

Post by Guest on Wed 12 Jul 2017, 12:09

Who's to blame for the Khadr payout? Stephen Harper, mostly.

iPolitics Insights

This is what ignoring the rule of law costs: $10 million and change

Ian Greene Tuesday, July 11th, 2017

Since July 4, Canadians have been embroiled in a debate about the the Canadian government’s $10.5 million payment to settle Omar Khadr’s lawsuit over illegal imprisonment and treatment.

Three points stand out: the abandonment of the rule of law by some public servants and cabinet ministers; the dangers of obfuscating the truth; and the sense that it is unfair for all Canadians to pay so much for the serious errors of a few.

The rule of law is a key legal support for a democracy. Many were shocked when the George W. Bush administration ditched it in order to extract quick revenge for 9/11 by setting aside due process for those captured and sent to the U.S. military base at Guantanamo Bay. Of course, that was precisely the kind of reaction al Qaida wanted in its efforts to undermine U.S. democratic institutions.

When Khadr was 11, his father forced his son to leave Canada to fight for al Qaida in Afghanistan. Khadr did not want to go (what 11-year-old would?) and sometimes hid from his extremist father in Afghanistan.

In 2002, at the age of 15, Khadr ended up in a firefight with American forces. He says he remembers little of what happened. He was found by American soldiers buried under debris, badly wounded. Khadr was the only al Qaida member left alive in the compound — and U.S. medic Christopher Speer had been killed.

As the only al Qaida survivor, Khadr got the blame — despite of the absence of evidence, and in spite of being a child soldier. He should have been separated from adult prisoners and placed in a rehabilitation program, with Canada’s help.

Instead, the U.S. military shipped him to Guantanamo, where evidence against him could be concocted. At two points, in 2003 and 2004, Khadr was interviewed by Canadian officials who knew he had been sleep-deprived for weeks. The results of those interviews were provided to American officials — but not to Khadr, who was denied legal counsel.

Subsequently, the U.S. Supreme Court twice declared the “trial” process at Guantanamo Bay illegal under U.S. and international law.

Some Canadian lawyers were outraged when they heard about Khadr’s situation, and initiated litigation on his behalf. When the case reached the Supreme Court in 2008, the judges wrote that Khadr’s rights as a Canadian had been egregiously violated. According to their ruling, he was tortured into giving evidence. He had not been treated as a child soldier, as he should have been. The actions of Canadian officials violated the rule of law.

The SCC found that Khadr had the right to see the evidence against him. Subsequently, the House of Commons Subcommittee on International Human Rights recommended that Khadr be repatriated to Canada to be dealt with under Canadian law. But the Harper minority government was content to let Khadr languish in Guantanamo Bay, abandoning the traditional Conservative defence of the rule of law.

It was the Harper government’s decision to, from 2008 to 2015, ignore the Charter of Rights, the Supreme Court and Canada’s obligation to rehabilitate child soldiers.
In an entirely just world, that settlement would be paid out personally by Harper and his cabinet colleagues.

This inaction resulted in the lion’s share of the $10.5 million paid to Khadr for being wrongfully imprisoned and mistreated. As I told my students in 2008, Khadr eventually would be entitled to a legal settlement from the Canadian government. The longer the government left him in Guantanamo, the larger the sum of money that would have to be paid out. In an entirely just world, that settlement would be paid out personally by Harper and his cabinet colleagues.

In 2008, Barack Obama won the presidential election in the U.S. Obama wanted to close the Guantanamo Bay facility, which had become a blight on the United States’ reputation for promotion of the rule of law. Republicans in Congress opposed Obama at every turn. Nevertheless, his administration wanted Khadr repatriated to Canada. That option was opposed by Stephen Harper, Jason Kenney, Andrew Scheer and other prominent Conservatives — again, increasing the amount of the settlement Khadr eventually would receive.

Because of the Harper government’s obstinacy, Khadr’s lawyers applied for a court order to have him repatriated. In 2010, the Supreme Court again unanimously reiterated the severity of the rights violations suffered by Khadr:

“Interrogation of a youth, to elicit statements about the most serious criminal charges while detained in these conditions and without access to counsel, and while knowing that the fruits of the interrogations would be shared with the U.S. prosecutors, offends the most basic Canadian standards about the treatment of detained youth suspects.”

The Court left it to the government to find a remedy for Khadr’s rights violations. The government still refused to repatriate Khadr — while all other Guantanamo prisoners who were citizens of Western nations were being repatriated by their governments. As a result, the amount of Khadr’s eventual settlement continued to climb.

Because of the Harper government’s refusal to cooperate with the Obama administration, Khadr’s lawyers faced the prospect of a conviction in the illegal court in Guantanamo, based on evidence induced by torture. Khadr could have been sentenced to life in Guantanamo with no possibility of release. Or he could have pleaded guilty to an offence he never committed in exchange for an eight-year sentence and the right to serve it in Canada. Clearly, there was no sensible option for Khadr other than to lie and plead guilty — which he did in 2010.

The Harper government continued to resist his repatriation to Canada until 2012, when he was transferred from Guantanamo to a jail in Alberta. His lawyers initiated an appeal of Khadr’s conviction at Guantanamo in the mainland U.S. Given the likelihood that Khadr would win, a judge released him on bail — a decision the Harper government vehemently denounced.

Those who claim that Khadr “admitted” to killing an American soldier overlook these circumstances. He is the only child soldier to have been prosecuted for a war crime since the conventions protecting child soldiers were instituted several decades ago.

Thanks to a group of Christians in Edmonton, Khadr is attending post-secondary education. He hopes to become a nurse. He has renounced al Qaida and other such terror groups, and now speaks out against them.

Not only did Canadian officials violate the rule of law when dealing with Khadr in 2003 and 2004, but from 2008 to 2015, the Harper government openly flouted the rule of law on a number of occasions. These violations tied in with the government’s narrative about Khadr — that he was a convicted terrorist who would pose a danger to Canada. By obfuscating the facts in this way, the government tangled itself deeper and deeper in a web of untruths.

That web still entangles key Conservative party leaders. Had they been willing to describe the Khadr saga in a more balanced way from the start, the Harper government would have been in a position to repatriate Khadr much sooner, thus substantially reducing the $10.5 million settlement.

Make no mistake: Khadr’s lawsuit would have succeeded eventually. The Trudeau government had no choice but to pay up — and the sooner the better, to minimize the total amount.

What can be done about the legitimate annoyance many Canadians feel over being forced, as taxpayers, to shell out for the serious mistakes of public servants and cabinet ministers? What incentive is there for public servants and politicians to not repeat those errors, when taxpayers are always liable in the end?

Unless a lawsuit can be directed at individuals in government rather than the government itself, the threat of legal action is only a minor incentive for politicians to honour the rule of law. What would help is a better understanding among public officials and politicians about the nature of the rule of law — and the pitfalls of distorting reality.

The views, opinions and positions expressed by all iPolitics columnists and contributors are the author’s alone. They do not inherently or expressly reflect the views, opinions and/or positions of iPolitics.


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'The government is rewarding terrorists and punishing vets'

Post by Guest on Wed 12 Jul 2017, 06:35

'The government is rewarding terrorists and punishing vets'

By PJ WILSON, The Nugget
Tuesday, July 11, 2017 10:50:22 EDT PM

Mike McNeil, a former corporal in the 4 Combat Engineer Support Squadron, shows off his "hero shot" taken after the vehicle he was driving in Afghanistan was destroyed by an improvised explosive device, as well as his service medals - the Sacrifice Medal, left, and the medal for his service in Afghanistan. PJ Wilson/The Nugget

The federal government’s decision to compensate “an admitted terrorist” is “a slap in the face” to any Canadian who served in Afghanistan.

“They are glorifying a self-confirmed terrorist,” Mike McNeil says.

McNeil is no longer in the Canadian Armed Forces. He took a medical release in 2014, five years after he drove over a Taliban improvised explosive device (IED) that left him with traumatic brain injury and possible spinal problems.
“I was 30 days in and did another 186 days,” McNeil, a North Bay native, says.

It was early afternoon Nov 14, 2009. The time and date are written on a piece of metal – part of a brake – blown off the one-man vehicle he drove to find IEDs and mines.

At about 1 p.m. that day, McNeil, then a member of the 4 Combat Engineer Support Regiment from CFB Gagetown, was leading a convoy.

His vehicle was towing a six-ton trailer that was supposed to find any explosives his vehicle failed to detonate.
The blast tore his vehicle to pieces and left a three-metre crater in the Afghanistan road. He was knocked unconscious, on the other side of the crater from the rest of the convoy.

It took them about half an hour to reach him as they searched for any other explosives that might have been there.
When they reached him, McNeil managed to get up on the wreckage of his vehicle for a “hero shot” before he was choppered back to the base hospital.

The explosive McNeil drove over was similar to those made by Khadr, a Canadian who was awarded a reported $10.5 million Friday by the federal government after he was held by the United States at the Guantanamo Bay detention camp in Cuba.
In announcing the deal, the government claimed it had “no choice” but to settle, pointing out the Supreme Court ruled in 2010 the government was complicit in the violation of Khadr’s rights as a citizen, when he was visited in Guantanamo Bay prison by CSIS agents in 2003 and 2004.

The government and the Supreme Court argued that whatever Khadr may or may not have done on the battlefield in Afghanistan was irrelevant to the settlement. (He pleaded guilty to five war crimes, including throwing the grenade that killed U.S. special forces Sgt. Christopher Speer in 2002. He is currently appealing the conviction.)

Expert opinion is united that the government would eventually have lost in court.

Seven out of 10 Canadians, however, say the government made the wrong call by settling out of court, according to an online survey conducted by the Angus Reid Institute over the weekend.
McNeil agrees.

He’s bitter that Khadr, who was wounded and captured by U.S. forces when he was 15, is being “rewarded” for his actions.
McNeil will receive $331,000, which was “reverse indexed” down from $360,000.

The federal government, he says, “is going around telling everyone they are giving vets all this money. But this is all I am going to get from the government for the rest of my life.

“And they are giving a terrorist – there are videos of him making the exact same IEDs I drove over – our government is giving him $10.5 million.

“The government is rewarding terrorists and punishing vets.”

The explosion changed McNeil, he says. Numerous specialists – psychologists, neurologists, neuro-psychologists – have examined him and have come away with the same diagnosis.
Traumatic brain injury.

One of the most noticeable effects is the stutter he now battles as he talks.
“The words get scrambled between my brain and my mouth,” he says.
“I couldn’t walk. I was stuttering – I’d never stuttered before.”

McNeil was put on light duty for eight days before he was back with his unit, searching for and clearing mines.
And while the members of his unit “had my back all the way,” it’s not something he can say for the Canadian government.
McNeil says he fought the Taliban for 216 days. But he’s been fighting the Canadian government for 2,700.
“I’m tired of fighting,” the onetime corporal in the Canadian army says.

He received the Canadian Forces Sacrifice Medal in 2012 – awarded to Canad
ian military personnel “wounded or killed under honourable circumstances as a direct result of a hostile action or actions intended for a hostile force.”

“It’s great, that,” he says. “But you don’t get any benefits for that.”
McNeil was medically released from the military March 12, 2014, just days shy of nine years in uniform.
“I left on good terms,” he says. “I was a good soldier. If they asked me to do something, I did it. I might have been pissed off about it, but I did it.”

There was almost no acknowledgement from the government that he had suffered any injury in the explosion. He filed claim after claim, but each was denied.

“My lawyer sat down with the VA lawyer, and they threatened to cut my benefits if I kept fighting,” he says. “If I kept appealing, my benefits would be reduced.”

Finally, earlier this year, Veterans Affairs acknowledged McNeil had suffered serious injury in the blast and approved the settlement - $30,000 less than he had been led to expect.

“I’m done begging the government for things they promised,” he says.

McNeil says he visited Nipissing-Timiskaming MP Anthony Rota’s office with his paperwork. Staff there made some photocopies of his information, but it was only a small portion of the papers he had with him.

In an e-mail, Rota told The Nugget "We can't comment on any one case due to confidentiality. We continue to work diligently to get our citizens the best outcome possible."


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Re: WHY???

Post by Guest on Tue 11 Jul 2017, 15:38

July 11, 2017


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Relatives of slain U.S. soldier want urgent freeze on Omar Khadr's assets

Post by Guest on Mon 10 Jul 2017, 18:32

Relatives of slain U.S. soldier want urgent freeze on Omar Khadr's assets

Colin Perkel, The Canadian Press
Published Monday, July 10, 2017 5:34PM EDT

TORONTO -- The widow of an American soldier killed in Afghanistan will ask a Canadian court on Thursday for an urgent order aimed at preserving any money the federal government paid former Guantanamo Bay prisoner Omar Khadr for breaching his rights, new documents show.

The motion before Ontario Superior Court asks for a freeze on his money -- the government reportedly paid Khadr $10.5 million last week -- pending the outcome of a request to recognize a US$134.1-million Utah judgment against him.

The default American judgment was handed down in 2015 in Utah in favour of Sgt. Chris Speer's widow Tabitha and that of another former American soldier, Layne Morris.

"If the assets are not frozen pending the hearing of the application, there may be no assets left in Canada upon which the applicants may execute," their factum states. "The applicants have repeatedly requested assurances that the assets will not be dissipated. There has been no response."

The motion also calls on the court to order Khadr to "provide an accounting of the settlement funds, and the current location of all such funds, or property acquired thereby."

The Utah judgment is based on Khadr's admission before a discredited military commission in Guantanamo Bay in 2010 -- subsequently recanted -- that he threw a grenade that killed Speer after a fierce battle in Afghanistan in July 2002 in which Morris was blinded in one eye.

Khadr, now 30, did not defend the suit because he was in prison in Canada at the time.

"It appears that a conscious decision was made not to respond to the Utah action," the factum states. "The allegations contained in the complaint were deemed to be admitted when Khadr was noted in default in Utah."

Last Friday, the Canadian government apologized to Khadr as part of a settlement of his civil lawsuit for breaches of his rights during his imprisonment by the Americans in Guantanamo. The government did not confirm the reported $10.5-million payout.
In support of their motion, Speer and Morris lean heavily on Canadian news reports about the money, and about steps he took to ensure the payment was sheltered to prevent Speer's lawyers from getting at it.

"One may reasonably infer that Khadr may provide some of the settlement funds to his family members, who appear to be unrepentant supporters of violent extremists," the documents state.

As word broke early last week about the government's settlement with Khadr, Speer's Canadian lawyer wrote a Justice Department lawyer to press their points.

In response, the documents show, a government lawyer wrote that the settlement process was confidential and that he "could not answer whether the settlement was finalized and whether funds have been paid to Khadr."

Khadr's lawyer, Nate Whitling, did not immediately respond to a request for comment on Monday.

American forces captured a badly wounded 15-year-old Khadr following the battle in which Speer was killed. He spent 10 years in Guantanamo Bay before returning to prison in Canada. He was freed on bail while he appeals his military commission conviction in 2015.


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Re: WHY???

Post by Dannypaj on Mon 10 Jul 2017, 05:56

Leader of the Conservative Party, Andrew Scheer states;
"This disgusting payout is an insult to our men and women in uniform who fight bravely for us".

This statement was In support of these brave individuals;

Halifax veterans speak out against Omar Khadr settlement
A group of veterans gathered in downtown Halifax on Friday in protest of the $10.5 million settlement awarded to former Guantanamo Bay prisoner Omar…

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Re: WHY???

Post by Dannypaj on Mon 10 Jul 2017, 05:37

Common sense truth, speaks for itself.
None of us understands this & I am sure in Afghanistan the news of this, is a victory.

Question.: Back to Romeo,
Our Air, Army, Navy cadets (12-18) they call them cadets, not child soldiers in Canada.
We can charge Adolescents as an Adult in Canada and also not hand out $10,500,000.

P.s Be careful what you post in whatever groups you may belong to on Facebook,  you maybe booted out for speaking up on
1. $10,500,000 or
2. Members off duty, getting dishonorable released and VRAB; on or off duty policy (double standards).

Last edited by Dannypaj on Wed 12 Jul 2017, 10:39; edited 1 time in total
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Re: WHY???

Post by Teentitan on Sun 09 Jul 2017, 21:16

I'm just glad Andrew Sheer will not let this issue fade into black. Come September it is going to be right back in Trudeau's lap.

Oh and could someone inform Kent Hehr that this was not a Conservative problem they left for the Liberals. The Conservatives just handed back the problem when they got it from Martin back in 06'. Jeez I wish someone would find the damn reset button on this guy because he needs his software updated.
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Re: WHY???

Post by prawnstar on Sun 09 Jul 2017, 20:23

Dallaire needs to check his head space. This innocent little child brought up by a terrorist is a victim of his own doing. The only real victim here is the widow of Sgt Speer.

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Re: WHY???

Post by Bruce72 on Sun 09 Jul 2017, 20:01

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Re: WHY???

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