Robert Fisk takes aim at Canadian war on Afghanistan and abuse of Canadians (Muslims, that is)

"This has been a good week to be in Canada — or an awful week, depending on your point of view - to understand just how irretrievably biased and potentially racist the Canadian press has become.... In fact, if I were a Canadian Muslim right now, I’d already be checking the airline timetables for a flight out of town. Or is that the purpose of this press campaign?

"...They were in receipt of 'fertilizers', we were told, which could be turned into explosives. When it emerged that Canadian police officers had already switched the 'fertilizers' for a less harmful substance, nobody followed up the implications of this apparent 'sting'. A Buffalo radio station down in the US even announced that the accused had actually received 'explosives'. Bingo: Guilty before trial.

"Of course, the Muslim-bashers have laced this nonsense with the usual pious concern for the rights of the accused.... [A] very unpleasant — albeit initially innocuous — phrase has now found its way into the papers. The accused 17 — and, indeed their families and sometimes the country’s entire Muslim community — are now referred to as 'Canadian-born'.

"Well, yes, they are Canadian-born. But there’s a subtle difference between this and being described as a 'Canadian' — as other citizens of this vast country are in every other context. And the implications are obvious; there are now two types of Canadian citizen: The Canadian-born variety (Muslims) and Canadians (the rest)."

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