I have been following the Omar Khadr saga for a while now. I will not bore you with the details of his life which I would rather that you read from the wikipedia entry.
So without much ado, here’s my opinion :
I think that the reaction of the Canadian government (and the public at large ) is one of pathetic, sniveling assholes. Why?
He is a Canadian citizen. We have other countries making successful cases of their citizens (here, here and here) to be moved to their respected countries where they are tried under their laws. So why is this person being ignored by the Canadian government.
If you go through the time line of his life, you cannot but notice that he is nothing but a child soldier. Forced or coerced or just plain brain washed into hating the West by his parents, this person did what any child would do in such a situation, do what his elders/patriarch/matriarch told him to do.
I am quite sure that Canada recoganises this aspect of child soldier…..wait, I will google it for you….yup, found the bit.
Foreign Affairs Minister Lloyd Axworthy and Minister for International Co-operation and Minister responsible for la Francophonie, Diane Marleau, today announced that Canada will support four projects to protect children in armed conflict…….
“The use of children as soldiers has escalated worldwide due to the advent of light weapons technology, the rise of intrastate conflict, and the increase in guerrilla and rebel forces,” said Mr. Axworthy. “However, those forms of exploitation or deplorable situations that deprive children of their right to fully realize their mental and physical potential, and expose them to hazardous and dangerous situations, contravene a basic human right.”
Canada has actively supported working groups established by the United Nations Commission on Human Rights to elaborate two optional protocols to the Convention on the Rights of the Child: One on the sale of children, child prostitution, and child pornography, and the other on children in situations of armed conflict.
So this begs the question…..why is the government of Canada (both Liberals and the Conservatives) acting against the law of the land? All because the public opinion is against the Khadr family? If this person has killed soldiers, please, by all means throw the book at him. But do it here in Canada under Canadian law with Canadian judges and Canadian lawyers.