On October 14, Canadian voters handed Conservative Prime Minister Stephen Harper his second minority government, one even stronger than his first. Harper vows to maintain the nation’s military commitment in Afghanistan through 2011, but his dedication to fighting radical Islam at home remains unclear.
Ezra Levant was one of those trying to keep those issues on the table while working the party’s “war room” during the campaign. Levant famously reprinted the Danish cartoons of Mohammed in his magazine, the Western Standard, back in 2006, an act that got him hauled before the Alberta Human Rights Commission for “Islamophobia.” That was Canada’s first real taste of Islamist “lawfare” tactics, and its most notorious next to similar charges brought against Maclean’s magazine and its columnist Mark Steyn.
Levant is optimistic about the prime minister’s commitment to fighting radical Islam on the domestic front.
“You might recall,” Levant told PJ Media right after the election, “that the 18 young Muslims arrested for plotting to blow up the CBC and CN Tower and behead the prime minister happened right after Harper was first elected. His response was not the typical politically correct response of having a photo-op with a radical imam.”
Rather, the Harper government refused to meet with, and thereby legitimize, radical groups like the Canadian Islamic Congress. Instead, the Conservatives pointedly visited Ahmaddiya and Ismaili Muslim communities, which tend to be more “educated, professional, charitable, liberal.”
According to one expert, however, the Harper government still has work to do on the anti-Islamist front.
David B. Harris directs the International and Terrorist Intelligence Program for INSIGNIS Strategic Research. He outlined the challenges facing the new government in the months ahead.