Honest to goodness it as been, with details to follow. The topic of today’s blog was going to be violence against women in Canada, using data from a Star article. After strange events took place, got out my computer and prepared to write. Up popped a news article from Al Jazeera – yes the amazing Qatar on-line trend setting, honest, well researched and well written news giant. Here is what it said and you are reading this along with me. “Police in Canada are hunting for two men identified as suspects in a stabbing spree in the central province of Saskatchewan that left at least ten people dead. Another 15 people were wounded in the attacks on Sunday in the remote Indigenous community of James Smith Cree Nation and the nearby town of Weldon. “It is horrific what has occurred in our province today,” Royal Canadian Mountain Police Assistant Commissioner Rhonda Blackmore told a news conference. Here’s what we know so far.” Some details were provided:
“Police received a call at 5:40 am on Sunday, reporting a stabbing at the James Smith Cree Nation. More calls describing knife attacks in the area came in quick succession, reporting violence in 13 locations.
Blackmore said some of the victims ‘may have been targeted and some may be random” and a motive was not immediately clear. She said several victims identified the attackers.
Police named the suspects as Damine Sanderson, 31 and Myles Sanderson, 30.
The attackers fled in a black Nissan Rogue and were sighted in Regina, the provincial capital (and my birthplace by the way) that is more than 185 miles to the south of the violence. A police search was expanded to include the neighboring provinces of Manitoba and Alberta.”
More details were provided and then a photograph of the two monsters. One looks absolutely evil, the other frightened. They both have black hair and brown eyes. The names of two victims were released – one a woman, the mother of two daughters and the other a 77 year old man, who made jam, according to a neighbor.
Al Jazeera in ultimate thoroughness tells us about where the attacks happened.
“James Smith Cree Nation is an Indigenous community with a population of about 3,400 although only about 1,900 members pf the community currently live on the reserve.
The Nation takes its name from the original chief of the James Smith Band and the reserve was officially established in an 1876 treaty. It is one of more than 630 First Nation groups, which include Indigenous Canadians who typically lived below the Arctic region and are distinct from the Inuit and Metis communities.
The James Smith Cree Nation is about 58 square miles.
Indigenous communities make up about 5 percent of Canada’s population, but have higher levels of poverty, unemployment, and a lower life expectancy than other Canadians
Neighbouring Weldon is a village of about 200 people.”
The question is asked by Al Jazeera: Are mass killings common in Canada? The answer is no, not as common as other countries. It cites the worst first, 2020 in Nova Scotia where 22 killed, in 2018 a van killed eleven and then in 2017 a man opened fire in a Quebec City mosque during Friday prayers. The number of dead from that attack is not mentioned.
Is this not the best reporting you have ever read? It provides details of the horrific event, puts you there by locating you geographically, speaking of the cursed history of Indigenous people in Canada, provided photos of the two men, the quotes are from named people high in the command of the RCMP, not a casual observer nor low level spokesperson.
How shall this affect me? Well I may not go out and about, stay in my utterly safe apartment. Getting stabbed is not my idea of fun – never has and never will be. But I do think of what would have happened if this were to happen in the USA. The monsters would have been equipped with gums – they could have wiped out all the residents of James Smith Cree Nation and those in Weldon Saskatchewan.
Al Jazeera provided links to two other stories, both relating to the Quebec City mosque shooting. One told the story of Aymen Derbali, a 45-year-old father of three, was shot seven times during the Quebec City mosque attack and rendered paralysed from the chest down. Derbali sprang and attacked the gun man – he modestly said that he saved the lives of seven others. He is a productive member of community, it is a miracle that he survived with his mind and arms intact. Another story told of the $400,000.00 (Canadian) collected on his behalf to help him rebuild his life with a photo of the presentation at the Quebec City mosque where he was shot.
But this link to a May. 2022 article. Canada’s Supreme Court has ruled that the gunman who attacked Quebec’s largest mosque in 2017, killing six and severely injuring five others, will be allowed to seek parole after serving 25 years of his sentence. Prosecutors had asked that Alexandre Bissonnette be held in prison for at least 50 years before possibility of parole. But the country’s top court dismissed their appeal, ruling that a life sentence without the realistic possibility of release is “cruel and unusual by nature” and violates the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms.” It was disappointing said the Quebec Islamic Cultural Centre and did not take into consideration the racist, Islamophobic and racist nature of the crime, but said that they would focus on the future. The High Court issued this statement. “He left not only families devastated but a whole community – the Muslim community in Quebec and throughout Canada – in a state of anguish and pain, with many of its members still fearful for their safety today.” Still, the court said it must rule on the constitutional limits of state power and reaffirm its commitment “to upholding the rights it guarantees to every individual, including the vilest of criminals”.
But this,a June 17, 2019 article was also featured. Canada‘s Quebec province has passed a controversial law banning some public sector employees from wearing religious symbols during work hours, prompting an outcry from civil liberties and Muslim groups. The long-expected legislation, Bill 21, which was passed by 73 to 35 in the predominantly French-speaking province on Sunday, affects public workers in positions of authority, including reachers, judges and police officers, but it does exempt current government employees and civic servants…..The Muslim Association of Canada also denounced the law, saying Muslim women would be “unjustly targeted” and that it would give “further rise to Islamophobia”
More links to Islamaphobia all over the world were provided, particularly in India. This for example” “A former legislator from India’s ruling party has been caught on boasting on camera about getting at least five Muslims killed in the western Indian state of Rajasthan.” I am SO happy I am not living in India – people from India hate Muslims for some reason, and no one there seems to stop their aggression. This 2017 article featured as well. “Activists say that lynching of Muslim Indians is a growing phenomenon in many parts of the country.” Well, these attacks do not seem to be going away, even mushrooming. I am NOT going to India, that is for sure.
Me: Why would I go to India? Being lynched and killed is not my idea of fun.
Alter Ego: Well that makes sense. But if you were killed or lynched for your faith you would be sure to go to Jannah.
Me: I am just going to behave myself, do good deeds etc etc etc and get their on my own merit. A wonderful woman at the Zayed Islamic Center in Abu Dhabi told me that the discrimination I suffered in Marin County would assist me on the Day of Judgment.
Alter Ego: it seems you have a plan.
Me: I do and it is working.
I shall now speak of two utter improbabilities. Improbable is a noun with the following synonyms; unlikelihood, implausibility; doubtfulness, uncertainty, dubiousness; unthinkability, inconceivability, incredibility.
It is unthinkable and implausible but I once, in the very beginning of my legal career, represented California prisoners on parole board hearings and was once able to secure release of a young man, almost unheard of actually. So I know of a way Alexandre Bissonnette could get out after twenty years, it is brilliant. But I ain’t talking and certainly not representing the man even if I am alive twenty years hence.
The other incredible underlying story has to do with the reporting source of these stories, the Al Jazeera. I was born in Saskatchewan and lived in Saskatchewan until the age of 12, the province of the mass murders. Al Jazeera is the ‘product’ of the Father Emir of Qatar. I met many members of his family in a humble hotel in London, the end of 2019 and very beginning of 2020, and for some time retained connection with some of them. But Covid destroyed the connection, did not see any of them nor hear from them during my short visit to Doha in April of 2022. Well, I was quarantined for an absolutely stupid reason, but nonetheless. But how unlikely that an old lady born in Saskatchewan would meet members of the Royal Family of Qatar? It was prior to my becoming a Muslim and only very marginally related to my becoming of the Islamic faith, by the way. Not to impress them whatsoever and actually some do not even believe it and tell me how to practice. I do not think so and said to one.
Me: Who are you to tell me how to practice the faith. Who do you think you are Royalty?
She: (No response)
I have not spoken of my unlikely morning but shall do so in an upcoming blog. I shall get this off to my Computer Guru complete with photos of me from early 2020. A young woman would come to my hotel room and do my make up. I think she was trying to make me look like an Arab, she was not successful as you shall see.