Why some women fought back against Boko Haram atrocities

The Islamist group has killed tens of thousands and displaced more than 2.3 million people since 2009

Why some women fought back against Boko Haram atrocitiesThe world reacted with shock and horror when 276 Nigerian schoolgirls were kidnapped by Boko Haram in 2014. Some of the girls managed to escape, others were rescued by military forces, but many were coerced into serving the group’s terrorist agenda, some acting as suicide bombers. While the mass abduction in the small Nigerian town…

Iran returns to the oil market in a big way

An expected new nuclear deal, a pipeline project and an easing of sanctions all contribute to increased production and exports

Iran returns to the oil market in a big wayCrude oil markets are focused on the Iran nuclear deal. A new United States administration under President Joe Biden has pledged to revert to the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), commonly known as the Iran nuclear deal. The world awaits the next moves, which will set the contours of future Iranian oil output. With…

Impeaching Trump will make a bad situation worse

Things could get far more violent than what we just witnessed if Trump was actually tossed out of office

Impeaching Trump will make a bad situation worseThe United States Capitol was built in 1800 as the political home for members of Congress. It’s a magnificent piece of neoclassical architecture, and a popular destination for historians and tourists. The Capitol has only been attacked on two occasions. The first was during the War of 1812. British forces initiated the burning of Washington…

Remembering the lives lost on Flight PS752

On the anniversary of the tragedy, the University of Alberta remembers the colleagues and friends who were lost

Remembering the lives lost on Flight PS752Russ Greiner’s artificial intelligence lab is made up of 15 or so grad students, post-docs and others who hold cheerful, heartfelt meetings, and why wouldn’t they? It’s a cohesive group made up of more friends than colleagues. And the one person most responsible for that cohesion during the 2019 iteration of the team was master’s…

Tensions rise in Persian Gulf over oil shipments

Tensions rise in Persian Gulf over oil shipmentsUnited States President Donald Trump leaves office in three weeks. Anything could happen before then. Stakeholders are taking positions around the strategically-important Strait of Hormuz, the only sea passage for crude oil shipped from the Persian Gulf to the open ocean. In 2018, some 21 million barrels per day (bpd), or almost 20 per cent…

The truth about Extinction Rebellion’s smiley-face terrorism

Violent extremism is not just a trait of Islamists or the far right

The truth about Extinction Rebellion’s smiley-face terrorismBy now it should be abundantly clear that violent extremism is not just a trait of Islamists or the far right. Black Lives Matter and Antifa riots have resulted in dozens of deaths this year, multiple police officers wounded and blinded, and entire districts of American cities burned down in the name of racial justice.…

The beauty of secularism

The beauty of secularismIt’s disturbing to learn that someone in the same profession was murdered while walking home from work. Samuel Paty, who taught a curriculum similar to mine, was beheaded by an extremist outside of Paris on Oct. 16. Paty presented material in previous weeks as part of a study of freedom of speech that some found…

Can we save humanity?

The world’s problems are many, and the solutions require abrupt shifts and great sacrifice. But change is essential

Can we save humanity?The world is in crisis. After touching on some of the problems, I’ll list possible policy responses and suggest why humanity so far has failed to implement them. Time is short but I believe that at root, our obstacles are political, not lack of scientific knowledge. Problems Global warming and related extreme weather events, rising…

The high cost of ineffective anti-terror measures

When will politicians consider the safety of the people to be more important than avoiding criticism?

The high cost of ineffective anti-terror measuresOn Nov. 29, 2019, two people were fatally stabbed and three injured by convicted terrorist Usman Khan. The attacker was shot dead by the City of London Police, after members of the public restrained him. Khan was convicted in 2012 of planning a terrorist attack. He was released from prison in 2018 after serving six…

Why Canada’s gun ban won’t stop shootings

Addressing the more complex problems of narcotics, smuggling, and terrorism will yield more effective and durable results

Why Canada’s gun ban won’t stop shootingsBy Paz Gómez Research associate Frontier Centre for Public Policy A prohibition is the easiest way out of a policy problem. In enacting one to target gun violence, the federal government has admitted failure to find a solution that preserves both rights and lives. The deadliest mass shooting in Canadian history took place in Nova…

Turning protesters into terrorists

Donald Trump wants to designate Antifa as a terrorist organization. But how will he do it and will it have any impact?

Turning protesters into terrorists“The United States of America will be designating ANTIFA as a Terrorist Organization.” – @realDonaldTrump, May 31, 2020 With that tweet, U.S. President Donald Trump has started the process of changing the narrative about radical left-wing individuals, parties and groups in his country – and around the world. How he’s going to actually do it…

Will Britain finally get tough on terrorists?

Convicted terrorists might well spend a handful more years in prison, but tens of thousands of other radicals remain at large across the United Kingdom

Will Britain finally get tough on terrorists?Just days after Britain officially left the European Union, United Kingdom residents were reminded of the immediate terror threat right under our noses by a multiple stabbing in Streatham, south London. Last year, the number of homicides in the capital city rose to a 10-year high, largely as a result of surging knife crime. Many…

Is the world on the verge of a nuclear winter?

As Trump upsets the world order, many countries may feel they have no choice but to develop nuclear weapons

Is the world on the verge of a nuclear winter?What will the world look like in 50 years – or even 10? One of the rather unsettling possibilities is that the future will have to accommodate a Germany with nuclear arms. For the short period after the Second World War that the United States was the only nuclear power, the world was stable. But…

Canada must disavow Sikh terrorism

Trudeau and his government are complicit in interference of the worst kind in India’s internal affairs

Canada must disavow Sikh terrorismFrench President Charles de Gaulle travelled to Quebec, ostensibly to visit Canada’s Expo 67, on July 24, 1967. But the old rascal had something entirely different in mind. He had come to Canada for one reason: to stir up trouble. Leaning over a balcony before a large Montreal crowd, he uttered a carefully rehearsed phrase…

We need to discuss the darker side of some Muslim tenets

People everywhere should be able to worship as they please or not worship at all

We need to discuss the darker side of some Muslim tenetsThe massacre of Muslims at prayer in New Zealand on March 15 is yet another appalling example of the horrors of extreme hatred. In this case, the mass murderer was a deluded white supremacist. Other recently targeted victims have been Jews at worship in Pittsburgh, or just anyone who chose to come to the wrong…

We need to discuss the darker side of some Muslim tenets

People everywhere should be able to worship as they please or not worship at all

We need to discuss the darker side of some Muslim tenetsThe massacre of Muslims at prayer in New Zealand on March 15 is yet another appalling example of the horrors of extreme hatred. In this case, the mass murderer was a deluded white supremacist. Other recently targeted victims have been Jews at worship in Pittsburgh, or just anyone who chose to come to the wrong…

We shall overcome crimes against humanity

Attacks on places of worship are based on the horrendous lie that we need to fear those who are different

We shall overcome crimes against humanityHumanity is reeling from the deaths of innocent people all over the world in houses of worship. Members of no religion seem to be immune from violence, nor can any major religion claim to be free of extremists who perpetrate hate crimes. Many will ask what the world is coming to. In fact, these horrendous…

A ray of hope after a brutal week

A multicultural student haka in New Zealand radiates something positive in a world that seems all too sick

A ray of hope after a brutal weekWhen you write a weekly column in the relatively unrelated realms of culture and politics, you rely on independent stimuli for the idea that eventually becomes the piece. Frankly, the idea that becomes the column doesn’t often strike until just after the previous week’s work appears online each Sunday morning. Then, as if ordained by…

We can escape the heart of darkness and violence

In Christchurch, South Carolina, Pittsburgh and elsewhere, we've seen what hate brings if we don't find common ground

We can escape the heart of darkness and violenceOne of Charles Dickens’ most beloved books is A Tale of Two Cities. The novel focuses on several characters, including Dr. Alexandre Manette, who was imprisoned in the Bastille in Paris, France, for 18 torturous years. His long-held desire was to join his daughter, Lucie, a brilliant physician who lived in London, England, and had…

The truth about the roots of most terrorism

When Muslim attackers and terrorists claim they’re acting to defend and advance Islam, westerners put their fingers in their ears

The truth about the roots of most terrorismGreat news! The Washington Post says, “Terrorist attacks are quietly declining around the world.” Citing a University of Maryland report on terrorism, the author points out that there are fewer terrorist attacks since 2016. So nothing to see here, folks – move along. Not so fast. I’m not sure we’re quite ready to celebrate the fact…

Ontario takes the initiative tackling terrorists

A simple – and seemingly obvious – provincial decision that should have been made by the Trudeau government long ago

Ontario takes the initiative tackling terroristsSome public policy initiatives are difficult for governments to make. They take a certain amount of time, effort, research, discussion, co-ordination, and wheeling and dealing before finally being implemented. And some public policy initiatives should be remarkably easy for governments to make and implement. Yet there are examples where simple political decisions take on a…

Making sense of violent attacks

In the aftermath of this week's tragedy in Toronto, how do we come to the grips with such violence? And who do we blame?

Making sense of violent attacksLike most columnists, I’m usually inspired to write on topics that are aligned with my areas of interest. My usual fare is politics, history and economics, but I’ll sometimes write about art, sport, music, and even animation and comic strips. Every once in a while, I’ll pick an issue that doesn’t perfectly fit in one…

Vasili Arkhipov kept his head and saved us from nuclear destruction

We owe so much to Vasili Arkhipov, yet he’s not well known. He kept his cool while those around him were losing it during the Cuban Missile Crisis

Vasili Arkhipov kept his head and saved us from nuclear destructionWhere would we be without Vasili Arkhipov? Would we be here at all? Who is Vasili Arkhipov? Before I get to that, let’s talk about the dangerous world we live in. North Korea is bristling with nuclear bombs. The rogue nation is completely unpredictable. South Korea, Japan – and, apparently, North America – are all…

Why did Justin Trudeau rush into a photo-op with Joshua Boyle?

No political spin doctor or Liberal-friendly talking head can ever make Trudeau’s inexplicable meeting with the Boyle family go away

Why did Justin Trudeau rush into a photo-op with Joshua Boyle?Joshua Boyle’s story has never smelled right. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and his senior advisers surely knew this, so it boggles the mind why they proceeded with a meeting with the former Afghanistan hostage. The son of a federal tax court judge, Boyle grew up in Breslau, Ont. He graduated from the University of Waterloo…

Boyle, Trudeau visit has a simple explanation

Joshua Boyle met with Justin Trudeau before Christmas. Now, with a photo making the rounds and Boyle facing charges, questions are being asked

Boyle, Trudeau visit has a simple explanationNot so long ago, I was in Vancouver at the same time as Jean Chretien. We decided to get together at a spot in Gastown. It was sunny and a truly beautiful day. Looking outside, Chretien suggested we go for a walk. So we left to take a walk – me, the former prime minister…

Investing in children to stop the scourge of extremism

Through education young people can be made aware of how they’ll be used and exploited by the people who pretend to care for them

Investing in children to stop the scourge of extremismChildren’s rights advocate Marian Wright Edelman said, “The question is not whether we can afford to invest in every child; the question is whether we can afford not to.” When we don’t invest in our children, the results can indeed be disastrous. Norwegian filmmaker Deeyah Khan recently made a documentary called Jihad: A Story of…

Standing firm against a rising tide of anti-Semitism

The way to combat these racist abominations is to speak truth, and to speak it persistently in a loud and unified voice

Standing firm against a rising tide of anti-SemitismJust when we thought we had advanced as a society, putting disgraceful intolerance behind us and embracing and celebrating our ethnic diversity, we realize we still have a long way to go. The Jewish Community Centre of Greater Vancouver received bomb threats on March 8 and March 12. These threats coincide with other anti-Semitic behaviour and…

Trudeau and the Aga Khan: A storm in a Bahamas teacup

Justin Trudeau's relationship with the Aga Khan is a healthy thing for Canadians and the Islam world in these troubled times

Trudeau and the Aga Khan: A storm in a Bahamas teacupOn Dec. 31, as Canada was about to inaugurate its 150th year, some sharp-eyed reporters noticed something wrong: the prime minister was absent. Where was Justin Trudeau? He and his family were on a private island in the Caribbean visiting the Aga Khan. Apart from criticizing the PM for missing the launch of this important national…