One of the Harper government’s big national security hullaballooes has been the arrest and trials of the “Toronto 18,” a band of Muslim supposed-terrorists who were conspiring to blow up Parliament. (Of course, they had no idea how to do it until undercover RCMP officers explained to them how to do it, but that is neither here nor there.)
One of the “Toronto 18” is a youth of 17. At his trial this week, it was explained by the RCMP’s own informant that this young man, a recent convert from Hinduism to Islam, had no idea what the group was planning, and believed that the training camp the group set up was a religious retreat.
But wait, it gets better:
Court has heard how the youth was among a dozen people who attended a military-style camp about two hours north of Toronto in December 2005.
While the Crown contends the camp was intended as terrorist training, Mr. Shaikh readily agreed the recruits were told they were going to a religious camp.
“That was the cover story,” Mr. Shaikh said.
“They weren’t told anything about attacking Parliament?” Mr. Chernovsky asked.
“That’s correct,” Mr. Shaikh said.
He said the campers could have viewed wearing fatigues, playing paintball or pretending to be Muslim fighters in Chechnya as a game of cowboys and Indians or cops and robbers, he added.
At one point, he said, the leaders hid in the bushes and made wolf and bear noises.
“They sat in the tent terrified,” court heard of the other campers. “They ended up huddled, shivering in the tent.”
Wolf and bear noises.