Is Maher Arar a liar? The Globe & Mail, and O’Connor commission, all but says it.

While I certainly don’t wish for any innocent men to be treated badly, I’ve always suspected that the $10m man, Maher Arar, is either a) not particularly innocent, and b) was treated reasonably, based on the suspicions and evidence in a time of war that both the Canadian and US authorities had on him. I have outlined my thoughts in this post from earlier in 2007, “Why the US Won’t (and Shouldn’t) Let Go”.

Only one reporter that I have found – the Globe & Mail’s Colin Freeze – has also refused to accede to Arar’s CAIR- and left-wing-activist-endorsed America-bashing narrative. In today’s Globe, Freeze casts great doubt on Arar’s oft-repeated claim that he has never been to Afghanistan:

Judge O’Connor took a hard line against torture evidence entering counterterrorism investigations. Playing devil’s advocate, he stated in his findings that even if one were inclined to believe coerced confessions (presumbably, that Arar admitted to attending terrorist training camps in Afghanistan -ed.), the Syrian information would hardly be grounds for marking Mr. Arar as a terrorist for life.

The training camps were diverse in nature,” Judge O’Connor writes. “Some could be described as terrorist training camps, others only as mujahedeen training camps.

“Based on the Syrians’ information, it could not be determined whether Mr. Arar was a member of al-Qaeda or had received specific terrorist training. He could have gone to Afghanistan as a religious Muslim with a desire to fight the infidels or he could have had more nefarious intentions.”

A fascinating passage. O’Connor, whose inquiry was prohibited from examining US or Syrian evidence, and was not supposed to be examining whether Arar had ever trained in Afghanistan, nonetheless finds it necessary to make excuses for some hypothetical young man who may have headed to Afghanistan “with a desire to fight the infidels” (news for you, O’Connor – you are an infidel!). Further, the O’Connor commission specifically leaves open the possibility that Arar did train in Afghanistan:

In an interview Friday, Paul Cavalluzzo, Judge O’Connor’s commission counsel, explained why the inquiry didn’t settle the Afghanistan question.

“What the report says is that one’s presence in Afghanistan is a very complicated and nuanced question. If the person is a mujahedeen fighting the Soviets … we looked upon these people as freedom fighters and nationalists,” Mr. Cavalluzzo said. “However, if they were in Afghanistan after 1996, when al-Qaeda moved to Afghanistan, and attended an al-Qaeda training camp, that’s a different story.”

He added, “as far as Arar is concerned, there was the allegation and it wasn’t proven either way.”

Aha! They seem eager to provide Maher Arar with a convenient excuse, should more evidence of his actions in Afghanistan in the early 1990s come to light. Apparently, it would be OK if he was there fighting infidel Soviets, but it would not be OK if he was there fighting with Bin Laden after his return from Sudan in 1996. However, there is an obvious, glaring error in this logic, of course: Arar was alleged to have trained in Afghanistan in 1993, when Al Qaeda was already well-established, and when the Soviet Union was already long tossed into the dustbin of history.

Maher Arar was interviewed for three hours by a US Congressional committee this past week, via teleconference from Ottawa. I’ve only had a chance to skim through the video (which can be found here in RA streaming format), and although the parts I’ve seen have only featured fawning and friendly questions, I’m hoping to go through it carefully to look for inconsistencies or slip-ups – and, possibly, some tough-minded Republican.

As Maher Arar runs around the world undermining virtually any attempt at fighting Islamic extremists in our midst, we deserve to know if he’s doing it based on truth, or lies.



Filed under Islamist-Leftist Alliance, Maher Arar, Terror in our Midst

13 responses to “Is Maher Arar a liar? The Globe & Mail, and O’Connor commission, all but says it.

  1. philanthropist

    Arar The Terrorist only ‘duped’ us because there are so many Canadians that want to be taken for suckers since it makes them feel good. Morons.

  2. the exile

    You left out the sentence before what you cite. O’Connor said he was disinclined to believe confessions extracted under torture. But even if he HAD taken those confessions at face value, they were not proof that Arar was Al Qaeda. In short, the only source of the info you cite here is a confession under torture. Now that “info” is “corroborated,” AFTER the fact, by a guy in US custody who will say anything to get himself freed. You guys on the right are so convinced that we liberals are easily duped fuzzy-headed idealists. Who is being fuzzy-headed and duped here?

  3. the exile

    My mistake. You didn’t leave out that sentence. You just paid no attention to it, which is arguably worse. So I guess you think all evidence extracted under torture is inherently reliable. Good hard-headed critical thinkng there.

  4. the exile:

    1) Perhaps you have a reading comprehension problem. I never said Arar was Al Qaeda. I simply pointed out that, based on words right out of O’Connor’s and Cavalluzzo’s mouths, Arar may have lied about being in Afghanistan in the early 1990s. Liars do not deserve the respect that someone like Mr. Arar is getting from the America-hating world left, nor do they deserve multi-million-dollar payoffs from the taxpayers.

    2) I wouldn’t describe liberals as “easily duped fuzzy-headed idealists”, although that’s not a bad self-analysis. I think liberals are fuzzy-headed dupes blinded by an ideology that proves itself, day-in, day-out, to be a failure and a danger.

    Welcome to my blog. I enjoy debate.

  5. EmZi

    the exile:

    I don’t know if you’ve ever been to Ottawa. Heck, you may even live there. I don’t know. What I do know is that if you’ve ever been, you’d quickly notice that there is a sizeable Arab community. If there wasn’t, I’d be inclined to believe the “I’m-Arab-in-a-post-9/11-world-so-they’re-picking-on-me” whine from Arar and Co., but with the size of that demographic in Ottawa, it’s really, really hard to believe that he was just picked up for that reason. This is not the 1970s when the number of Arabic speakers could be counted on one hand, in some parts of Ontario anyway. The authorities must have had something on him over the legions of others in the city.

  6. jo

    I’m still waiting for some kind of proof that Arar was actually tortured. It’s easy enough to make such a claim, but what about proof? Does he have any marks on him to back up these claims? Until I hear more than just claims, I’ll continue to believe we have been taken for an expensive ride by Arar.

  7. EmZi

    Yes, indeed, jo!

    There’s a huge difference between alleging that a regime WILL torture a person and alleging that it ALREADY has. So, where’s the proof? Why have we paid a man (or promised to pay him?) without seeing this? This kind of nonsense couldn’t hold up in court, I’d like to think anyway.

  8. flaggman: “Was treated reasonably”? Excuse me, but what is REASONABLE about SHIPPING SOMEONE OFF TO A KNOWN ROGUE STATE LIKE SYRIA to be “interrogated”? If the Canadian officials had something on Maher, why didn’t THEY interrogate him? If the Americans had something on Maher, why didn’t THEY interrogate him?

    And this whole “he wasn’t picked out because of his race and religion because Ottawa has a huge Arab/Muslim population” thing is ridiculous. News flash: only from 1000 to 3000 blacks were lynched out of of a black population that numbered in the TENS OF MILLIONS at the time. So, does the fact that the rest of the blacks were not lynched or otherwise murdered mean that race played no factor in the murders of Emmitt Till and similar?

    Where race and religion come to play is the fact that THERE IS NO WAY THAT A WHITE ATHEIST WOULD HAVE BEEN SHIPPED TO A KNOWN ROGUE STATE FOR “INTERROGATION.” My goodness, why is your head in the blinders about this? And please, end the nonsense about “this is needed to fight the war on terror.” News flash: people that are willing to DIE FOR THEIR FAITH have no fear of getting caught. When the mullahs in Iran, Saudi Arabia, or wherever give the order for the sleeper cells that are already in this country and have been for many years to start setting off their dirty bombs and shooting their ground to air rockets, it is going to happen. NOTHING that the United States government is doing in its sham “war on terror” is going to stop it.

    We let these people over here in the first place (the real problem), and now we have a huge Muslim population, the vast majority of which are peaceful, and we think that we are going to accomplish something by harassing members of the 99% of the population that aren’t breaking the law because they are engaged in scurrilous suspicious activities like praying aloud on airplanes (which is what happened to a Canadian doctor a couple of years back)?

    The problem is hypocrisy. We want to claim that we are an open nondiscriminating society so we let these people over here, but then we use any excuse to treat them like dirt because despite our pretensions the truth is that we can’t stand them and don’t want them to be around. Again, did America start sending white males off to Russia to be “interrogated” when Timothy McVeigh blew up that federal building in Oklahoma City? When Eric Rudolph was bombing abortion clinics and gay nightclubs and the Olympics? During that horrific rash of school shootings, including but certainly not limited to Columbine? Ummm … no, and there is a reason for that, isn’t it? Quit defending the indefensible, OK?

  9. healtheland:

    1) It was quite reasonable for the US to treat Arar with extreme suspicion, for the many reasons I have covered in previous posts. Unfortunately, only Arar and his close comrades know the truth about him, and he’s simply not willing to come clean about his activities. If he wanted to come clean, he would have testified to O’Connor.

    2) The “war on terror” and the treatment of blacks in the Jim Crow south have nothing in common, and the implication results in a trivialization of the work of the great men and women of the civil rights movement. There is not a single discriminatory law on the books in any jurisdiction to separate Muslims from anyone else (except in Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Sudan, Yemen, etc etc etc).

    3) The Tim McVeigh-Eric Rudolph-Columbine moral-equivalency argument has been debunked so many times, it’s not even worth addressing, except to say that those who constantly resort to it are intellectually bankrupt and blinded by ideology.

    Thanks for visiting, have a nice day.

  10. Great article. If only the MSM had the courage to write the truth about that man!

  11. Roger

    Health e land:

    Go to aras’ own website and read his statement that he was refused entry to the USA and only JORDAN would take him in
    because his wife was Palestinian and Pro-Sharia with a relative linked to the Muslim brotherhood.

    Unless you think Justice O’Connor was tortured into allowing the truth to be given at the Inquiry, because Arar was exposed as a Draft-Dodger from Syria, he got a gun permit just after the Montreal Massacre by a Shariah law Gamil Gharabi on a Jihad suicide mission to be with Allah and muhammed .
    Arar had a second home near the same Boston Airpot used in 9/11 to hijack planes , and Arar lived their prior to the hijacking and is on record attend the Radical pro-Jihad Mosque that recruited terrorist for Al-Qaeda.
    He quickly married to assure a stay in canada because his Palestinian wife pumped out Canadian babies to anchor them to canada via the Child , they fled canada in 2002 for Tunisia to live with his wifes family , but when he fled there by himself to meet up with the Pro-hamas Nihad Awad from CAIR in the USA, he was denied entry and sent to JORDAN.

    Read the 3rd item down on the Arar link below, it details his Lawsuit against JORDAN prior to his Lawsuit against canada once a Judge tossed out Arars’ claim agaisnt JORDAN.

    Arar even told the CBC that he was treated fairly by the USA and had a nice plane flight to Jordan where he was allowed to roam around the jet and was fed really good food.

    So is Arar now telling lies or did he tell lies then to the CBC , it can’t be both ways because then he can’t be trusted for anything he says and now he has 2 children that will absorb his hatred and lies to one day act out against canada that is officially blamed for his plight.
    It’s a no-win for canada , and a win-win for arars’ lawyers .

  12. I have been tortured inside of Canada not because of terrorism but because of a Service Dog. It is nobody else’s fault but the Government of Canada by letting the police fail to help me. From the municpal police in 2 cities to the RCMP who said “let the criminals arrest themselves”. Please!!!!!!! I had to pay a whole lot to do my own investigation or something. The criminals ripped me off big time. Where is my forensic medical examination? I paid CAD 60 to go to the hospital when it is the police who is suppose to do so. And I was not examined. Sick! That is why it is important to have experts who can determine deception.

    Worse part, the Canadian Centre for International Justice sponsored by Maher Arar kicked me to the curb saying that they can only investigate foreign government but not their own. How can one investigate foreign governments but not the Canadian one.

    Here is my website. You can bypass the whole thing straight to “The right to a Service Dog”

  13. Sorry, my website is

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