Confronting Trudeau on Climate Lies and Kinder Morgan Pipeline

On his recent town hall tour across Canada, Justin Trudeau encountered many Canadians who are indignant about his government’s support for tar sands pipelines. One of those Canadians was Clayton Thomas-Muller of

For The Real News Network, I speak to Clayton about his challenge to Trudeau at a town hall in Winnipeg to explain how Trudeau’s devotion to the tar sands industry can be reconciled with his purported commitment to the Paris climate accord.

My interview of Clayton can be seen here:

Under its New Leader Jagmeet Singh, Will Canada’s NDP Finally Call for Sanctions on Israel?

During the NDP leadership campaign, I had the opportunity to ask Jagmeet Singh, who subsequently won the NDP’s leadership contest, whether he supported sanctions on Israel. In this report for The Real News, you can listen to my conversation with Mr. Singh.

In my report, I also speak with NDP activists Genevieve Nevin and Yazan Khader about their remarkable efforts to garner support for a new NDP resolution on Israel/Palestine. That resolution calls for a ban on the importation of products made in Israel’s illegal settlements.

If adopted at next week’s NDP convention in Ottawa, it will mark the first time in Israel’s 50-year occupation of Palestinian lands that one of the three major Canadian political parties has called for sanctions on Israel. Until now, only the Green Party of Canada has called for sanctions on Israel.

My report can be seen here:

BDS Activists and Canada’s Communist Party Sue the City of Montreal for Civil Rights Violations

During Canada’s 2015 federal election, Montreal-based supporters for the BDS Movement and local candidates of the Communist Party of Canada attempted to draw attention to Steven Harper’s indifference to the suffering of the Palestinian people by erecting provocative posters in Montreal. The central and devastating image of their posters (pictured above) was a dead Palestinian boy who had been killed along with three other Palestinian boys in an Israeli missile attack on a Gaza beach in the summer of 2014.

In apparent violation of Canada’s electoral laws, the City of Montreal, whose mayor at the time was pro-Israel Denis Coderre, removed and confiscated the posters. City workers continued to remove the posters even after a lawyer for the City acknowledged in writing that the posters should not have been removed.

As a result, BDS-Quebec and Canada’s Communist Party later sued the City of Montreal for damages. The trial of that lawsuit was conducted last month (January 2018) in Quebec Superior Court in Montreal. The judge’s decision is now pending.

For The Real News, I attended the first day of the trial and, at the courthouse, I spoke with two of the plaintiffs – Bruce Katz of BDS-Quebec and Bill Sloan of the Communist Party.

My report on the trial can be seen here:

The Governments of Justin Trudeau and Rachel Notley Ignore the Scandal of Toxic ‘Tailings Ponds’

For the Real News, I speak to independent oil & gas researcher Regan Boychuk about the failure of governments in Canada to force the tar sands industry to clean up the vast toxic wasteland it has created in the once-pristine environment of northern Alberta.

My interview of Regan can be seen here:

‘Bomb Train’: Oil Execs Try to Blame Workers for Tragic Accident

In 2013, a deadly oil train explosion in the small town of Lac-M├ęgantic, Quebec rocked the nation. Despite abundant evidence that the Montreal, Maine and Atlantic Railway Company had placed profits ahead of safety, Quebec and federal prosecutors went after the workers rather than the executives.

Days ago, three of those workers were acquitted of charges brought provincially, but they still face federal charges.

For The Real News, I speak with Fritz Elder, a veteran train wreck investigator and Chairperson of the Defence Committee of two of the charged workers, about the prosecutors’ failed case and the true causes of this disaster.

Falsely Accused Terrorism Suspect Released After 10-Year Ordeal

Dr. Hassan Diab is a Canadian sociology professor. His academic career was interrupted about a decade ago when he was falsely accused of an attack near a synagogue in Paris, France in 1980. In 2008, France requested Dr. Diab’s extradition from Canada. Canadian authorities then imprisoned him, subject to Draconian bale conditions, for six years.

Dr. Diab was extradited to France in 2014. His extradition occurred at the hands of a Canadian judge, Robert Maranger, who described the evidence against Dr. Diab as “illogical,” “very problematic,” and “convoluted and confusing with conclusions that are suspect.” The judge concluded that the prospects for conviction seemed unlikely, but that his hands were tied by Canada’s extradition law. He therefore committed Dr. Diab to extradition.

Under Canada’s extradition law, Canada’s Justice Minister nonetheless had discretion not to surrender Dr. Diab to French authorities. That minister was conservative Rob Nicholson. Upon reading Justice Maranger’s concerns, Nicholson could have chosen not to extradite Dr. Diab, but did so anyways.

After being extradited to France, Dr. Diab spent three years and two months in France’s largest prison. He was ordered released on bail eight times by four different French judges. However, each time, the prosecutor blocked his release. On January 12, 2018, only days ago, two French anti-terrorism judges cleared him and ordered his immediate and unconditional release. Dr. Diab has finally been reunited with his family in Canada, including his son who was born after his extradition.

For The Real News Network, I spoke to Dr. Diab about his decade-long ordeal and about the individuals and organizations who had a hand in that ordeal – former Conservative Justice Minister Rob Nicholson and B’nai Brith Canada. My interview of Dr. Diab can be seen here:

On Democracy North, I Discuss the Struggle for Palestinian Freedom in Canada

On this evening’s Democracy North program which airs on Vancouver Co-op Radio 100.5 fm, I discussed with Irwin Oostindie the struggle for Palestinian freedom.

Our conversation touched on Roger Waters’ recent tour in Canada, the attempts by pro-Israel groups to silence Roger, the NDP leadership’s growing willingness to demand justice for the Palestinian people, and the rising danger that the discredited governments of Donald Trump, Benjamin Netanyahu and Saudi Crown Prince Bin Salman will ignite a devastating war in the Middle East.

The Democracy North program begins at about 2 minutes into this podcast: