Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has come under fire for his response to the revelation that some workers at a major Canadian airport support Islamic State (ISIS/ISIL).
An investigation showed ISIS propaganda videos were shared and promoted from workers’ social media accounts. One radicalized employee had direct access to runways at Montreal Pierre Elliot Trudeau International Airport (named for the prime minister’s father, who served as prime minister).
He has since been transferred to a different job at the airport where he has no access to runways.
Responding to a question asked by a reporter if people with extremist views should be allowed to continue working at the nation’s airports, Trudeau said:
“I think that’s part of the kind of conversations we have to have as a society. Keeping people safe is paramount important, but defending our rights and freedoms is as well, and making sure we do that in the right way.”
In the words of Toronto Sun columnist Candice Malcolm:
“You can’t make this stuff up. Trudeau wants to have a national conversation about whether terrorist sympathizers and ISIS supporters should be able to work in strategic locations at our national airports. He wants us to consider the rights and freedoms of terrorist sympathizers and ISIS supporters in order to strike the right balance between our safety and their freedom to do what? Support jihad?”
Malcolm added, “Trudeau is becoming a parody of an apologetic leftist who believes terrorism is our fault and zealous Islamists and jihadists are simply misunderstood.”
She cited previous comments by Trudeau who, in 2011, spoke out against the previous government’s use of the term “barbaric” in a guide to Canadian citizenship.
The guide stated:
“Canada’s openness and generosity do not extend to barbaric cultural practices that tolerate spousal abuse, ‘honour killings’, female genital mutilation, forced marriage or other gender-based violence.”
At the time, Trudeau objected to the language saying it was “too harsh” and told the government to make an “attempt at responsible neutrality.”
After tremendous criticism, he apologized and recanted his statement.
Malcolm also noted that after the 2013 Boston Marathon bombing, Trudeau said in an interview on CBC, “There is no question that this happened because there is someone who feels completely excluded. And our approach has to be, okay, where do those tensions come from?”