In the wake of the December, 2014 release of the U.S. Senate Intelligence Committee’s report on CIA torture, Prime Minister Harper said the report “has nothing to do whatsoever with the government of Canada.”
However, David Long, 9/11 survivor and creator of a petition submitted to Parliament December 3, 2014, disputes this claim.
The office of Steven Blaney, Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness, recently rejected this request for a Parliamentary review of the September 11, 2001 attacks.
The 1427 petitioners are dismayed that the key document setting forth the U.S. government’s account of the 9/11 events, the 2004 9/11 Commission Report, is based largely on testimony obtained through torture.
Their case was presented in a widely-viewed press conference held at Parliament December 10th by three academic organizations – Rethink911.ca, Architects and Engineers for 9/11 Truth and the9/11 Consensus Panel,
In his brief response to the petitioners, Mr. Blaney stated:
“The Government will not tolerate the waste of taxpayer dollars by studying conspiracy theories.”
However, the claim that the 9/11 Commission Report is based on torture is not, says Long, a conspiracy theory but the conclusion of a 2008 NBC News analysis, which was based on a study of the Commission’s report and on interviews with Commission staffers and U.S. intelligence officials.
“Much of what was reported about the planning and execution of the terror attacks on New York and Washington was derived from the interrogations of high-ranking al-Qaida operatives.”
Each of these operatives had been subjected to “enhanced interrogation” – for example, Khalid Sheikh Mohamed, who was nearly suffocated by water close to 200 times.
One prisoner was placed in a coffin-sized box for 11 days and threats of rape and murder were made against his children. Janat Gul was tortured for months based on false accusations made by an informant.
According to NBC, “More than one quarter of all footnotes in the 9/11 Report refer to CIA interrogations of al-Qaida operatives who were subjected to the now-controversial interrogation techniques”.
Long adds that a parliamentary review would provide answers to disturbing questions about 9/11 and cost a fraction of the 92 billion dollars Canada has spent on the War on Terror.
Mr. Long is still waiting for the Canadian government to explain its reliance on the faulty and discredited 9/11 Commission Report in dictating its foreign and domestic policies, while claiming to have nothing to do with CIA torture.
Roger Lagasse of Vancouver, a signatory to Long’s petition, states:
“It is discourteous for the Harper government to give such short shrift to the concerns of 911 family members, to 2300 American architects and engineers who have studied the building collapses for years, and to a Canadian survivor. It is shameful that, rather than providing a sensitive response to those seeking closure on the many unanswered questions, the government chose to chastise the petitioners.
“If there is no other candidate in my riding who will pledge support for the petitioned parliamentary review, I will run either as an independent or for a party with vision, and make it the central issue of my campaign.
“I feel Canadians owe respect and courtesy to the survivors and family members who, in light of emerging evidence, have called for an independent, objective parliamentary review of the Commission’s report.
“At a minimum we owe this to our soldiers who risk everything for our security.”
Lagasse is in good company. A recent Canadian poll found that support for a parliamentary review outweighs opposition, 33% to 19%.