When this story first broke, the Muslim community was quick to complain it felt “stressed” over the investigation — not so much, apparently, over the suspects’ disappearance or their potential victims. This, of course, has become standard operating procedure: try to deflect attention by claiming victim status, and silence the discussion by portraying any scrutiny from outside the community as a form of (or prelude to) persecution.
“Mounties lay terror charges against missing Canadians,” by Colin Freeze and Greg McArthur for the Globe and Mail, March 15 (thanks to Dave):
The RCMP have charged two Canadians with terrorism-related offences in connection to a 2009 plot to blow up packed subway cars in New York.
The RCMP allege that the al-Qaeda terrorists behind the plot were trained by a University of Manitoba student who has disappeared from Canada.
Ferid Imam vanished from Winnipeg in 2007 and is now suspected of being in the lawless mountains of northwestern Pakistan. He is now being sought on terrorist-training charges as part of a new criminal case.
The case, which alleges lesser offences by a second suspect, amounts to a crucial test of the reach of Canada”s Anti-Terrorism Act. Passed shortly after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks, it allows police to charge suspects who are suspected of committing terrorist offences outside Canada”s borders. The new case is the first time that the Mounties have charged someone with acts taking place entirely overseas.
Police hope the case against Mr. Imam ““ who faces a life sentence if he is caught and convicted of being a terrorist trainer ““ will alert the public about what they say is the growing threat posed by radicals from the West who want to join al-Qaeda and its affiliates.
The charges are new, but the investigation is not. Several counterterrorism agencies have been quietly hunting Mr. Imam over the years. But by obtaining warrants from a Winnipeg court on Monday, the Mounties have made the manhunt official ““ and laid a claim to the suspects by alleging they are fugitives from Canadian justice.
RCMP allege that Mr. Imam, while in Pakistan, had a role in training Najibullah Zazi ““ the Afghanistan-born New Yorker who has already pleaded guilty to plotting to bomb the subway system. [...]
Washington officials are growing more fearful about the prospect that “homegrown” terrorist attacks could cause carnage on U.S. streets. The fear is shared by officials in Ottawa, who face the added nightmare than any Canadian connection to any terrorist attack may lead U.S. lawmakers to tighten up the border ““ threatening billions of dollars in bilateral trade….