Wednesday, January 13, 2016
CSIS Censoring the Press - Update
Well this is strange. The Freedom of the Press is sacred. It's protected by the US Constitution and the Canadian Charter of Rights. Yet all we have to do is ask Dan Rather whether or not the press is still free. Yesterday we were talking about the news reports about the judge's decision to release the transcript of Monday's in camera hearing in the John Nuttall entrapment case. The judge said they would release the transcripts with the names of the CSIS agents omitted.
Fair enough. No one needs to know the names of the CSIS agents. We just need to know what they said and did with our tax dollars. I suppose the indirect revelation was that CSIS was involved not just the RCMP. Initially we were told that CSIS tipped off the RCMP. Now we find out there was a little more to it then that. Which would explain why they ignored their own legal counsel and proceeded unilaterally knowing they were guilty of entrapment.
The headline in the Vancouver Sun article was even more specific. It read: CSIS loses bid to keep closed-door hearing a secret in B.C. terror trial. The CTV headline was the same. Likewise so was the headline in the Times Colonist. Only none of those articles are there any more. I realize that in time news articles expire but this is recent news. It's as though *someone* is running around censoring the press. The Winnipeg Free Press just picked up the article and it's still there. For now. The Globe and Mail article is still there. As is the City News article.
All of these news articles state "Canada’s spy agency has failed in its bid to keep part of a court hearing secret." They state that CSIS lost their bid to keep it secret not the RCMP. That would imply that CSIS was running the operation not the RCMP as we were previously told. Even the Vancouver Province article I linked to yesterday is gone.
The point is, the Globe and Mail reported that a lawyer representing six media outlets, including The Globe and Mail, last week applied to B.C. Supreme Court for details about a closed-door hearing in the case of John Nuttall and Amanda Korody. We should applaud the media for making this application. Protecting the freedom of the press takes effort.
CSIS ordered to produce records in terror plot trial
CBC is reporting on the content of the transcript: Following several redacted pages, Sandford said: "Mr. Nuttall advises that [X] strongly encouraged him on many occasions to engage in violent terrorist acts and played a significant role in Mr. Nuttall's radicalization."
"A B.C. Supreme Court judge has ordered CSIS to produce records provided to the spy agency in relation to a couple who plotted to bomb the B.C. legislature. The evidence forming part of the trial record gives rise to an inference that there may well have been a connection between [X] and CSIS. It was CSIS surveillance that led to the RCMP investigation."
Update: Turns out CSIS did censor the press but they didn't censor my blog. That old blog post I linked to in my previous post is still there. When I linked to it, the http didn't show up and instead of not loading it showed the same error as though the page had been taken down. My bad. However, the news articles are still offline. I understand that CSIS had the news articles taken down because they said there was a human source for CSIS. The court said person X was a source not a human source. I don't even know what that means.