Skip to main content Start of content

House Publications

The Debates are the report—transcribed, edited, and corrected—of what is said in the House. The Journals are the official record of the decisions and other transactions of the House. The Order Paper and Notice Paper contains the listing of all items that may be brought forward on a particular sitting day, and notices for upcoming items.

For an advanced search, use Publication Search tool.

If you have any questions or comments regarding the accessibility of this publication, please contact us at accessible@parl.gc.ca.

Previous day publication Next day publication
PDF

37th PARLIAMENT, 1st SESSION

EDITED HANSARD • NUMBER 79

CONTENTS

Monday, September 17, 2001




1100
V     Order Paper
V         The Speaker
V     Board of Internal Economy
V         The Speaker

1105
V     Business of the House
V         Hon. Don Boudria (Leader of the Government in the House of Commons, Lib.)
V         The Speaker
V Government Orders
V     Attack on the United States
V         Right Hon. Jean Chrétien (Prime Minister, Lib.)
V         The Speaker
V         Right Hon. Jean Chrétien (Prime Minister, Lib.)

1110

1115

1120

1125
V         Mr. Stockwell Day (Leader of the Opposition, Canadian Alliance)

1130

1135

1140

1145

1150

1155

1200
V         Mr. Gilles Duceppe (Laurier--Sainte-Marie, BQ)

1205
V         Ms. Alexa McDonough (Halifax, NDP)

1210

1215

1220
V         Right Hon. Joe Clark (Calgary Centre, PC/DR)

1225

1230

1235

1240
V         Hon. John Manley (Minister of Foreign Affairs, Lib.)

1245

1250
V         Mr. Bill Casey (Cumberland—Colchester, PC/DR)

1255
V         Hon. John Manley
V         Mr. John Reynolds (West Vancouver--Sunshine Coast, Canadian Alliance)
V         Hon. John Manley
V         Hon. Lawrence MacAulay (Solicitor General of Canada, Lib.)

1300

1305
V         Mr. Paul Crête (Kamouraska—Rivière-du-Loup—Témiscouata—Les Basques, BQ)
V         Hon. Lawrence MacAulay

1310
V         Mr. Art Hanger (Calgary Northeast, Canadian Alliance)
V         Hon. Lawrence MacAulay
V         The Deputy Speaker
V         Mr. Richard Harris
V         Mr. Brian Pallister (Portage—Lisgar, Canadian Alliance)

1315

1320
V         Mr. Brent St. Denis (Algoma—Manitoulin, Lib.)
V         Mr. Brian Pallister

1325
V         Mr. Kevin Sorenson (Crowfoot, Canadian Alliance)

1330

1335
V         Mr. Peter MacKay (Pictou—Antigonish—Guysborough, PC)
V         Mr. Kevin Sorenson

1340
V         Hon. David Collenette (Minister of Transport, Lib.)

1345

1350
V         Mr. Peter Stoffer (Sackville—Musquodoboit Valley—Eastern Shore, NDP)

1355
V         Hon. David Collenette
V         Mr. James Moore (Port Moody—Coquitlam—Port Coquitlam, Canadian Alliance)
V         The Deputy Speaker
V         Hon. David Collenette
V STATEMENTS BY MEMBERS
V     Terrorism
V         Mr. Mac Harb (Ottawa Centre, Lib.)

1400
V     Terrorism
V         Mr. David Anderson (Cypress Hills—Grasslands, Canadian Alliance)
V     Terrorism
V         Mr. David Pratt (Nepean—Carleton, Lib.)
V     Terrorism
V         Mr. John Godfrey (Don Valley West, Lib.)
V     Terrorism
V         Mr. Walt Lastewka (St. Catharines, Lib.)
V     Canadian Muslims
V         Mr. Rahim Jaffer (Edmonton—Strathcona, Canadian Alliance)

1405
V     Terrorism
V         Mr. Robert Bertrand (Pontiac—Gatineau—Labelle, Lib.)
V     Terrorism
V         Ms. Francine Lalonde (Mercier, BQ)
V         The Speaker
V     Terrorism
V         Mr. Clifford Lincoln (Lac-Saint-Louis, Lib.)
V     Terrorism
V         Mr. Myron Thompson (Wild Rose, Canadian Alliance)

1410
V     Terrorism
V         Hon. Susan Whelan (Essex, Lib.)
V     Terrorism
V         Mr. Bill Blaikie (Winnipeg—Transcona, NDP)
V     Terrorism
V         Ms. Monique Guay (Laurentides, BQ)
V     Terrorism
V         Mr. Jacques Saada (Brossard—La Prairie, Lib.)
V     Terrorism
V         Right Hon. Joe Clark (Calgary Centre, PC/DR)

1415
V     Terrorism
V         Mr. Geoff Regan (Halifax West, Lib.)
V ORAL QUESTION PERIOD
V     Terrorism
V         Mr. Stockwell Day (Leader of the Opposition, Canadian Alliance)
V         Right Hon. Jean Chrétien (Prime Minister, Lib.)
V         Mr. Stockwell Day (Okanagan--Coquihalla, Canadian Alliance)
V         Right Hon. Jean Chrétien (Prime Minister, Lib.)
V         Mr. Stockwell Day (Leader of the Opposition, Canadian Alliance)

1420
V         Right Hon. Jean Chrétien (Prime Minister, Lib.)
V         Mr. Brian Pallister (Portage—Lisgar, Canadian Alliance)
V         Right Hon. Jean Chrétien (Prime Minister, Lib.)
V         Mr. Brian Pallister (Portage—Lisgar, Canadian Alliance)
V         Right Hon. Jean Chrétien (Prime Minister, Lib.)
V         Mr. Gilles Duceppe (Laurier—Sainte-Marie, BQ)
V         Right Hon. Jean Chrétien (Prime Minister, Lib.)
V         Mr. Gilles Duceppe (Laurier—Sainte-Marie, BQ)
V         Right Hon. Jean Chrétien (Prime Minister, Lib.)
V         Mr. Michel Gauthier (Roberval, BQ)
V         Right Hon. Jean Chrétien (Prime Minister, Lib.)
V         Mr. Michel Gauthier (Roberval, BQ)

1425
V         Right Hon. Jean Chrétien (Prime Minister, Lib.)
V         Ms. Alexa McDonough (Halifax, NDP)
V         Right Hon. Jean Chrétien (Prime Minister, Lib.)
V         Ms. Alexa McDonough (Halifax, NDP)
V         Right Hon. Jean Chrétien (Prime Minister, Lib.)
V         Right Hon. Joe Clark (Calgary Centre, PC/DR)
V         Right Hon. Jean Chrétien (Prime Minister, Lib.)
V         Right Hon. Joe Clark (Calgary Centre, PC/DR)
V         Right Hon. Jean Chrétien (Prime Minister, Lib.)
V         Mr. Kevin Sorenson (Crowfoot, Canadian Alliance)

1430
V         Hon. Lawrence MacAulay (Solicitor General of Canada, Lib.)
V         Mr. Kevin Sorenson (Crowfoot, Canadian Alliance)
V         Hon. Lawrence MacAulay (Solicitor General of Canada, Lib.)
V         Ms. Francine Lalonde (Mercier, BQ)
V         Hon. John Manley (Minister of Foreign Affairs, Lib.)
V         Ms. Francine Lalonde (Mercier, BQ)
V         Hon. John Manley (Minister of Foreign Affairs, Lib.)
V     National Defence
V         Mr. Leon Benoit (Lakeland, Canadian Alliance)
V         Hon. Art Eggleton (Minister of National Defence, Lib.)
V         Mr. Leon Benoit (Lakeland, Canadian Alliance)

1435
V         Hon. Art Eggleton (Minister of National Defence, Lib.)
V         Mr. Claude Bachand (Saint-Jean, BQ)
V         Hon. John Manley (Minister of Foreign Affairs, Lib.)
V         Mr. Claude Bachand (Saint-Jean, BQ)
V         Hon. Art Eggleton (Minister of National Defence, Lib.)
V     Terrorism
V         Mr. Rahim Jaffer (Edmonton—Strathcona, Canadian Alliance)
V         Hon. Martin Cauchon (Minister of National Revenue, Lib.)
V         Mr. Rahim Jaffer (Edmonton—Strathcona, Canadian Alliance)
V         Right Hon. Jean Chrétien (Prime Minister, Lib.)

1440
V         The Speaker
V         Mr. Stan Keyes (Hamilton West, Lib.)
V         Hon. John Manley (Minister of Foreign Affairs, Lib.)
V         Mr. Svend Robinson (Burnaby—Douglas, NDP)
V         Right Hon. Jean Chrétien (Prime Minister, Lib.)
V         Mr. Svend Robinson (Burnaby—Douglas, NDP)
V         Right Hon. Jean Chrétien (Prime Minister, Lib.)
V         Mr. Chuck Strahl (Fraser Valley, PC/DR)
V         Hon. Don Boudria (Leader of the Government in the House of Commons, Lib.)

1445
V         Mrs. Elsie Wayne (Saint John, PC/DR)
V         Hon. Art Eggleton (Minister of National Defence, Lib.)
V     Immigration
V         Mr. Paul Forseth (New Westminster—Coquitlam—Burnaby, Canadian Alliance)
V         Hon. Elinor Caplan (Minister of Citizenship and Immigration, Lib.)
V         Mr. Paul Forseth (New Westminster—Coquitlam—Burnaby, Canadian Alliance)
V         Hon. Elinor Caplan (Minister of Citizenship and Immigration, Lib.)
V     Foreign Affairs
V         Mr. Stéphan Tremblay (Lac-Saint-Jean--Saguenay, BQ)
V         Hon. John Manley (Minister of Foreign Affairs, Lib.)
V         Mr. Stéphan Tremblay (Lac-Saint-Jean--Saguenay, BQ)
V         Hon. John Manley (Minister of Foreign Affairs, Lib.)
V     Airline Safety
V         Mr. James Moore (Port Moody—Coquitlam—Port Coquitlam, Canadian Alliance)

1450
V         Hon. David Collenette (Minister of Transport, Lib.)
V         Mr. James Moore (Port Moody—Coquitlam—Port Coquitlam, Canadian Alliance)
V         Hon. David Collenette (Minister of Transport, Lib.)
V     National Defence
V         Mr. Dominic LeBlanc (Beauséjour—Petitcodiac, Lib.)
V         Hon. Art Eggleton (Minister of National Defence, Lib.)
V     Terrorism
V         Mr. Vic Toews (Provencher, Canadian Alliance)
V         Hon. Anne McLellan (Minister of Justice, Lib.)
V         Mr. Vic Toews (Provencher, Canadian Alliance)
V         Hon. Anne McLellan (Minister of Justice, Lib.)

1455
V         Ms. Pierrette Venne (Saint-Bruno—Saint-Hubert, Ind. BQ)
V         Hon. Lawrence MacAulay (Solicitor General of Canada, Lib.)
V         Hon. Denis Paradis (Brome—Missisquoi, Lib.)
V         Hon. Martin Cauchon (Minister of National Revenue and Secretary of State (Economic Development Agency of Canada for the Regions of Quebec), Lib.)
V     The Economy
V         Mr. Scott Brison (Kings—Hants, PC/DR)
V         Hon. Paul Martin (Minister of Finance, Lib.)
V     Terrorism
V         Mr. Bill Blaikie (Winnipeg—Transcona, NDP)
V         Right Hon. Jean Chrétien (Prime Minister, Lib.)
V         Mr. Mario Laframboise (Argenteuil—Papineau—Mirabel, BQ)

1500
V         Hon. David Collenette (Don Valley East, Lib.)
V         Mr. Randy White (Langley—Abbotsford, Canadian Alliance)
V         Hon. Anne McLellan (Minister of Justice, Lib.)
V         The Speaker
V     Business of the House
V         Hon. Don Boudria (Leader of the Government in the House of Commons, Lib.)
V Government Orders
V     Attack on the United States
V         Ms. Marlene Catterall
V         Hon. Martin Cauchon (Minister of National Revenue and Secretary of State (Economic Development Agency of Canada for the Regions of Quebec), Lib.)

1505

1510
V         Mr. Rahim Jaffer (Edmonton--Strathcona, Canadian Alliance)

1515
V         Hon. Martin Cauchon
V         Mr. Robert Lanctôt (Châteauguay, BQ)

1520
V         Hon. Martin Cauchon
V         Mr. Michel Gauthier (Roberval, BQ)

1525

1530
V         Ms. Jean Augustine (Etobicoke--Lakeshore, Lib.)
V         Mr. Michel Gauthier
V         Ms. Jean Augustine
V         Mr. Michel Gauthier
V         Mr. Robert Lanctôt (Châteauguay, BQ)
V         Mr. Michel Gauthier

1535
V         Ms. Francine Lalonde (Mercier, BQ)

1540

1545
V         Mr. Sarkis Assadourian (Brampton Centre, Lib.)
V         Ms. Francine Lalonde
V         Mr. Paul Crête (Kamouraska—Rivière-du-Loup—Témiscouata—Les Basques, BQ)

1550
V         Ms. Francine Lalonde
V         The Acting Speaker (Mr. Bélair)
V         Hon. Art Eggleton (Minister of National Defence, Lib.)

1555

1600
V         Mr. Jason Kenney (Calgary Southeast, Canadian Alliance)
V         Hon. Art Eggleton
V         Mr. Benoît Sauvageau (Repentigny, BQ)

1605
V         Hon. Art Eggleton
V         Mr. Reg Alcock (Winnipeg South, Lib.)

1610
V         Mr. Myron Thompson (Wild Rose, Canadian Alliance)

1615
V         Mr. Reg Alcock
V         Mr. Peter MacKay (Pictou—Antigonish—Guysborough, PC/DR)
V         The Acting Speaker (Mr. Bélair)
V         Mr. Reg Alcock
V     Business of the House
V         Hon. Don Boudria (Leader of the Government in the House of Commons, Lib.)
V         The Acting Speaker (Mr. Bélair)

1620
V         Mr. Jay Hill
V         The Acting Speaker (Mr. Bélair)
V     Attack on the United States
V         Mr. Leon Benoit (Lakeland, Canadian Alliance)

1625

1630
V         Mr. Peter Adams (Peterborough, Lib.)
V         Mr. Leon Benoit
V         Mr. Kevin Sorenson (Crowfoot, Canadian Alliance)

1635
V         Mr. Leon Benoit
V         Mr. Paul Forseth (New Westminster—Coquitlam—Burnaby, Canadian Alliance)

1640

1645
V         Mr. Alex Shepherd (Durham, Lib.)
V         Mr. Paul Forseth
V         Mr. Bill Blaikie (Winnipeg—Transcona, NDP)

1650
V         Mr. Paul Forseth
V         Mr. Larry Bagnell (Yukon, Lib.)

1655

1700
V         Mrs. Betty Hinton (Kamloops, Thompson and Highland Valleys, Canadian Alliance)
V         Mr. Jay Hill (Prince George—Peace River, PC/DR)

1705
V         The Deputy Speaker
V         Ms. Judy Sgro (York West, Lib.)

1710

1715
V         Mrs. Elsie Wayne (Saint John, PC/DR)
V         Ms. Judy Sgro
V         Mr. Brian Fitzpatrick (Prince Albert, Canadian Alliance)

1720
V         Ms. Judy Sgro
V         Mr. Svend Robinson (Burnaby—Douglas, NDP)

1725

1730
V         Mr. Dan McTeague (Pickering—Ajax—Uxbridge, Lib.)
V         Mr. Svend Robinson

1735
V         Mr. Bill Blaikie (Winnipeg--Transcona, NDP)

1740

1745
V         Mr. Sarkis Assadourian (Brampton Centre, Lib.)
V         Mr. Bill Blaikie
V         Mr. Myron Thompson (Wild Rose, Canadian Alliance)

1750
V         Mr. Bill Blaikie
V         The Deputy Speaker
V         Mr. Mac Harb (Ottawa Centre, Lib.)

1755
V         Ms. Libby Davies (Vancouver East, NDP)

1800
V         Mr. Mac Harb
V         Mr. Myron Thompson (Wild Rose, Canadian Alliance)
V         Mr. Mac Harb
V         Hon. Andy Scott (Fredericton, Lib.)

1805

1810
V         Mr. Gurbax Malhi (Bramalea—Gore—Malton—Springdale, Lib.)
V         Hon. Andy Scott
V         Mr. Chuck Strahl (Fraser Valley, PC/DR)

1815

1820
V         Mr. Peter Adams (Peterborough, Lib.)

1825
V         Mr. Chuck Strahl
V     Business of the House
V         Ms. Marlene Catterall (Ottawa West--Nepean, Lib.)
V         The Deputy Speaker
V     Attack on the United States
V         Mr. Bill Casey (Cumberland—Colchester, PC/DR)

1830

1835

1840
V         Mr. Joe Jordan (Leeds—Grenville, Lib.)
V         Mr. Bill Casey
V         Hon. Jean Augustine (Etobicoke—Lakeshore, Lib.)

1845
V         Mr. Bill Casey
V         Mr. Yvon Charbonneau (Anjou--Rivière-des-Prairies, Lib.)

1850

1855
V         Mr. Paul Crête (Kamouraska--Rivière-du-Loup--Témiscouata--Les Basques, BQ)
V         Mr. Yvon Charbonneau

1900
V         Mr. Jason Kenney (Calgary Southeast, Canadian Alliance)
V         The Deputy Speaker
V         Mr. Yvon Charbonneau

1905
V         Mr. Stephen Owen (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada, Lib.)

1910
V         Mr. John Herron (Fundy—Royal, PC/DR)

1915
V         Mr. Stephen Owen
V         Mr. Jason Kenney (Calgary Southeast, Canadian Alliance)
V         Mr. Stephen Owen

1920
V         Mr. Rahim Jaffer (Edmonton—Strathcona, Canadian Alliance)

1925

1930
V         Hon. Wayne Easter (Malpeque, Lib.)
V         Mr. Rahim Jaffer
V         Mr. Réal Ménard (Hochelaga—Maisonneuve, BQ)
V         Mr. Rahim Jaffer

1935
V         Mr. Preston Manning (Calgary Southwest, Canadian Alliance)

1940
V         Mr. Paul Szabo (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Public Works and Government Services, Lib.)
V         Mr. Preston Manning

1945
V         Hon. Lorne Nystrom (Regina—Qu'Appelle, NDP)
V         Mr. Preston Manning
V         Ms. Albina Guarnieri (Mississauga East, Lib.)

1950

1955
V         Mr. Gerald Keddy (South Shore, PC/DR)
V         The Acting Speaker (Mr. Bélair)
V         Ms. Albina Guarnieri

2000
V         Mr. Gerald Keddy (South Shore, PC/DR)
V         Ms. Albina Guarnieri (Mississauga East, Lib.)
V         Mr. Paul Szabo (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Public Works and Government Services, Lib.)

2005

2010
V         Ms. Judy Wasylycia-Leis (Winnipeg North Centre, NDP)
V         Mr. Paul Szabo

2015
V         Mr. James Moore (Port Moody—Coquitlam—Port Coquitlam, Canadian Alliance)

2020

2025
V         Mr. Paul Harold Macklin (Northumberland, Lib.)
V         Mr. James Moore
V         Mrs. Bev Desjarlais (Churchill, NDP)

2030
V         Mr. James Moore
V         The Acting Speaker (Mr. Bélair)
V         Mr. Randy White (Langley—Abbotsford, Canadian Alliance)

2035

2040
V         Mrs. Bev Desjarlais (Churchill, NDP)
V         Mr. Randy White

2045
V         Mr. Steve Mahoney (Mississauga West, Lib.)
V         Mr. Randy White
V         Hon. Charles Caccia (Davenport, Lib.)

2050

2055
V         Mr. James Lunney (Nanaimo—Alberni, Canadian Alliance)
V         Hon. Charles Caccia

2100
V         Mr. Steve Mahoney (Mississauga West, Lib.)

2105

2110
V         Mr. Rick Casson (Lethbridge, Canadian Alliance)
V         Mr. Steve Mahoney
V         Mr. Grant McNally (Dewdney—Alouette, PC/DR)

2115
V         Mr. Steve Mahoney
V         Mr. Claude Bachand (Saint-Jean, BQ)

2120

2125
V         Mr. Jason Kenney (Calgary Southeast, Canadian Alliance)
V         Mr. Claude Bachand

2130
V         Mr. Grant McNally (Dewdney--Alouette, PC/DR)
V         Mr. Claude Bachand
V         Ms. Madeleine Dalphond-Guiral (Laval Centre, BQ)

2135

2140
V         Mr. Jason Kenney (Calgary Southeast, Canadian Alliance)
V         Ms. Madeleine Dalphond-Guiral

2145
V         Miss Deborah Grey (Edmonton North, PC/DR)
V         The Speaker
V         Ms. Madeleine Dalphond-Guiral
V         Mr. John Harvard (Charleswood—St. James—Assiniboia, Lib.)

2150

2155
V         Mr. Peter Stoffer (Sackville—Musquodoboit Valley—Eastern Shore, NDP)

2200
V         Mr. John Harvard
V         Mr. Myron Thompson (Wild Rose, Canadian Alliance)
V         Mr. John Harvard

2205
V         Hon. Wayne Easter (Malpeque, Lib.)

2210
V         Mr. Darrel Stinson (Okanagan—Shuswap, Canadian Alliance)
V         Mr. Wayne Easter

2215
V         Miss Deborah Grey (Edmonton North, PC/DR)
V         Mr. Wayne Easter
V         Mr. Vic Toews (Provencher, Canadian Alliance)
V         The Speaker

2220
V         Mr. Wayne Easter
V         The Speaker
V         Mr. Vic Toews

2225

2230
V         Mr. Peter Stoffer (Sackville—Musquodoboit Valley—Eastern Shore, NDP)
V         Mr. Vic Toews
V         Hon. Bill Graham (Toronto Centre—Rosedale, Lib.)

2235
V         Mr. Vic Toews
V         Mr. Peter Goldring (Edmonton Centre-East, Canadian Alliance)

2240

2245
V         Miss Deborah Grey (Edmonton North, PC/DR)
V         Mr. Peter Goldring
V         Mr. Myron Thompson (Wild Rose, Canadian Alliance)

2250
V         Mr. Peter Goldring
V         Hon. Bill Graham (Toronto Centre—Rosedale, Lib.)

2255

2300
V         Mr. Jason Kenney (Calgary Southeast, Canadian Alliance)
V         Mr. Bill Graham

2305
V         Mr. Peter MacKay (Pictou—Antigonish—Guysborough, PC/DR)
V         The Speaker
V         Mr. Peter MacKay
V         Mr. Bill Graham
V         Mr. David Pratt (Nepean—Carleton, Lib.)

2310

2315

2320
V         Miss Deborah Grey (Edmonton North, PC/DR)
V         Mr. David Pratt

2325
V         Mr. Réal Ménard (Hochelaga--Maisonneuve, BQ)

2330

2335
V         Mr. Bob Speller (Haldimand—Norfolk—Brant, Lib.)
V         Mr. Réal Ménard
V         Mr. Grant McNally (Dewdney—Alouette, PC/DR)

2340
V         Mr. Réal Ménard
V         Mr. Paul Crête (Kamouraska--Rivière-du-Loup--Témiscouata--Les Basques, BQ)

2345

2350
V         Ms. Paddy Torsney (Burlington, Lib.)
V         Mr. Paul Crête

2355
V         Mr. Gurmant Grewal (Surrey Central, Canadian Alliance)
V         The Speaker
V         The Speaker






CANADA

House of Commons Debates


VOLUME 137 
NUMBER 79 
1st SESSION 
37th PARLIAMENT 

OFFICIAL REPORT (HANSARD)

Monday, September 17, 2001

Speaker: The Honourable Peter Milliken

    The House met at 11 a.m.


Prayers


*   *   *

  +(1100)  

[English]

+Order Paper

+

    The Speaker: I wish to inform the House that in accordance with the representation made by the government pursuant to Standing Order 55(1), I have caused to be published a special Order Paper giving notice of a government motion. I now lay upon the table the relevant document.

*   *   *

[Translation]

+-Board of Internal Economy

+-

    The Speaker: I have the honour to inform the House that Pierre Brien, member for the electoral district of Témiscamingue, has been appointed as a member of the Board of Internal Economy, replacing Stéphane Bergeron, member for the electoral district of Verchères--Les-Patriotes.

*   *   *

  +-(1105)  

[English]

+-Business of the House

[Business of the House]
+-

    Hon. Don Boudria (Leader of the Government in the House of Commons, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, there have been consultations among House leaders and I would like to seek the unanimous consent of the House to move the following motion. I move:

    That, notwithstanding any standing order or usual practice, the House shall proceed directly to consideration of government orders now and immediately after the conclusion of oral questions later this day;

    That, at the conclusion of this day's sitting, the motion in the name of the Prime Minister under government orders, government business No. 10, as printed in the order paper, shall be deemed to have been adopted; and

    That the Speaker shall convey the said motion with the names of every member of the House appended thereto, to the Congress of the United States of America.

+-

    The Speaker: Does the hon. the government House leader have unanimous consent of the House to propose the motion?

    Some hon. members: Agreed.

    (Motion agreed to.)


+Government Orders

[Government Orders]

*   *   *

[English]

+-Attack on the United States

+-

    Right Hon. Jean Chrétien (Prime Minister, Lib.) moved:

    That this House express its sorrow and horror at the senseless and vicious attack on the United States of America on September 11, 2001;

that it express its heartfelt condolences to the families of the victims and to the American people; and

that it reaffirm its commitment to the humane values of free and democratic society and its determination to bring to justice the perpetrators of this attack on these values and to defend civilization from any future terrorist attack.

+-

    The Speaker: In light of the terms of the motion, might I suggest that hon. members rise to observe a moment of silence.

     [Editor's note: The House stood in silence]

+-

    Right Hon. Jean Chrétien (Prime Minister, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I thank the leaders of all parties in the House of Commons, indeed all members, for their co-operation in organizing this historic debate.

    In the sad and trying days since the awful news came from New York and Washington, it has been clear that the civilized nations of the world have a solemn duty to speak as one against the scourge of terrorism.

    Under these urgent circumstances, Canadians will be pleased to see that their elected representatives have come together in the spirit of unity and resolve to make this debate our first order of business. I look forward to hearing the views of members on the role that Canada should play in shaping a firm and just global response to an unprecedented global threat.

    There are those rare occasions when time seems to stand still, when a singular event transfixes the world. There are also those terrible occasions when the dark side of human nature escapes civilized restraint and shows its ugly face to a stunned world. Tuesday, September 11, 2001, will forever be etched in memory as a day when time stood still.

    When I saw the scenes of devastation, my first thoughts and words were for all the victims and the American people but there are no words in any language whose force or eloquence could equal the quiet testimony last Friday of 100,000 Canadians gathered just a few yards from here for our National Day of Mourning. I was proud to be one of them and I was equally proud of the Canadians who gathered in ceremonies right across the country. It was a sea of sorrow and sympathy for those who have lost friends and loved ones: Americans, Canadians, citizens of many countries. Above all, it was a sea of solidarity with our closest friend and partner in the world, the United States of America.

    As always, this time of crisis brought out the very best in our people: from prayer meetings and vigils to the countless numbers who lined up to give blood, from a flood of donations by individuals and businesses to patience in the face of delays and inconvenience. We were all moved by the sight of Canadians opening up their hearts and homes to thousands of confused and anxious air travellers who had no place to go.

    When I spoke to President Bush last week, he asked me to thank the Canadian people. I ask all members to carry his message back to their constituencies.

  +-(1110)  

    The president also told me that he had been told many times by his officials about the tremendous co-operation and assistance they were receiving from the agencies and departments of the Government of Canada in responding to the immediate emergency of the attack and in the investigation that would bring to justice those who committed this crime against humanity.

  +-(1115)  

[Translation]

    Indeed, I am proud of the speed and co-ordination that has characterized our response: assessing and pre-positioning disaster assistance supplies, so that we could respond in a timely and effective manner when called upon; seeing to the safety of stranded air travellers; working to protect the safety of Canadians; sharing information with investigators; and responding to calls for information about loved ones.

    The relevant ministers will inform the House in detail on what their departments have done, and are doing, on behalf of Canadians. But I want to express my appreciation to our public servants for their round the clock effort.

    The House must also address the threat that terrorism poses to all civilized peoples and the role that Canada must play in defeating it. To understand what is at stake, we need only reflect on the symbolic meaning of the World Trade Center towers. In the words of their architect, the towers were:

a representation of our belief in humanity, our need for individual dignity, our belief in co-operation and, through co-operation, our ability to find greatness.

    So, let us be clear: this was not just an attack on the United States. These cold-blooded killers struck a blow at the values and beliefs of free and civilized people everywhere. The world has been attacked. The world must respond. Because we are at war against terrorism and Canada, a nation founded on a belief in freedom, justice and tolerance, will be part of that response.

    Terrorists are not attached to any one country. Terrorism is a global threat. The perpetrators have demonstrated their ability to move with ease from country to country, from place to place, to make use of the freedom and openness of the victims on whom they prey, the very freedom and openness that we cherish and will protect. They are willing, indeed anxious, to die in the commission of their crimes and to use innocent civilians as shields and as tools.

    We must prepare ourselves, and Canadians, for the fact that this will be a long struggle with no easy solutions, one in which patience and wisdom are essential.

[English]

    Let us not deceive ourselves as to the nature of the threat that faces us and that this can be defeated easily or simply with one swift strike. We must be guided by a commitment to do what works in the long run, not by what makes us feel better in the short run.

    Our actions will be ruled by resolve but not by fear. If laws need to be changed they will be. If security has to be increased to protect Canadians it will be. We will remain vigilant but will not give in to the temptation in a rush to increase security to undermine the values that we cherish and which have made Canada a beacon of hope, freedom and tolerance in the world.

    We will not be stampeded in the hope, vain and ultimately self-defeating, that we can make Canada a fortress against the world.

    Finally, I want to make another very important point. Canada is a nation of immigrants from all corners of the globe, people of all nationalities, colours and religions. This is who we are. Let there be no doubt. We will allow no one to force us to sacrifice our values or traditions under the pressure of urgent circumstances.

    We will continue to welcome people from the whole world. We will continue to offer refuge to the persecuted. I say again, no one will stop this.

    I have been saddened by the fact that the terror of last Tuesday has provoked demonstrations against Muslim Canadians and other minority groups in Canada. This is completely unacceptable. The terrorists win when they export their hatred.

  +-(1120)  

    The evil perpetrators of this horror represent no community or religion. They stand for evil, nothing else. As I said, this is a struggle against terrorism not against any one community or faith. Today more than ever we must reaffirm the fundamental values of our charter of rights and freedoms: the equality of every race, every colour, every religion and every ethnic origin.

    We are all Canadians. We are a compassionate and righteous people. When we see the searing images of mothers and fathers, sisters and brothers, many of them Canadian, wandering the streets of New York looking for their missing loved ones, we know where our duty lies.

    We have never been a bystander in the struggle for justice in the world. We will stand with the Americans as neighbours, as friends, as family. We will stand with our allies. We will do what we must to defeat terrorism.

    However, let our actions be guided by a spirit of wisdom and perseverance, by our values and our way of life. As we go on with the struggle, let us never, ever, forget who we are and what we stand for.

    Vive le Canada.

  +-(1125)  

+-

    Mr. Stockwell Day (Leader of the Opposition, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, we are only six days from the morning of September 11, 2001, a new date which we all know will live on in infamy. On that day, in a few harrowing hours, the world was changed forever.

    None of us will ever forget where we were in the moments we first heard that planes had struck the World Trade Center and the Pentagon, but for many people, including hundreds of Canadians, that awful moment will never end. There will always be a missing daughter or son, husband or wife, or mother or father who will never return.

    It is to the victims of these barbaric acts, to their families and to their loved ones that our hearts, our minds and our prayers must go first. We must let these families know, those who have suffered these losses, that we are with them, that this parliament is with them and that Canada is with them.

    Last week's horrific attacks in New York, Washington and Pennsylvania have shocked everyone in the civilized world. These mass hijackings and suicide attacks were more than a crime; they were barbaric acts of war. They were aimed straight at the heart of our society. I say society because these attacks were not aimed just at New York or even just at the United States. They were aimed at everyone in the world who believes in democracy and freedom. They were aimed at everything we hold dear here in Canada also.

    Our first thoughts must turn to those who were lost in this horrific attack and to their grieving families: the passengers and crew of those airplanes, the men and women working in the office towers, the pedestrians below those towers, and the brave firefighters and police who rushed in only to be killed themselves. Our thoughts are with these brave souls. They died because they lived in freedom and freedom was targeted for attack.

    The very next day following the awful attacks in New York, the people of New York, hurting and feeling great pain, returned to their jobs. Many opened their shops, some of which were covered in ashes, and with their hearts aching but their heads held high they said to a watching world “We are bruised but we will not be broken”.

    Let us join them in that spirit to do what must be done to stop the forces of terror and tyranny and to keep open the doors of freedom and peace.

    Our hearts go out to all our brave neighbours in the United States, that great beacon of hope and freedom to the world, our greatest ally and our closest friend. When Canada has needed it in the past the United States has been there for us. When the world has needed it, the United States has been there. Along with Canadians, the brave men and women of the United States crossed the Atlantic and Pacific in the second world war and stopped tyranny. Their determined valour was exceeded only by their friendship in the peace that followed.

    Now is the time for Canada and Canadians to stand by our great friends and great allies as never before.

    I want to thank the Prime Minister and the foreign affairs minister for their words of solidarity toward the United States. During this crisis it is important that MPs from all parties put forward a united front. I will do that. Others will do that.

    Today I know that every member of parliament from every party would call himself or herself a Canadian, an ally, a friend, not just a member of a particular party.

    The Prime Minister has my full support as we stand shoulder to shoulder with the United States.

  +-(1130)  

    I would also like to pay tribute to the thousands of Canadians, from RCMP officers and customs agents to airport personnel, firefighters, doctors, nurses, and citizens who donated blood, who responded with such compassion and concern in this crisis. They have shown that Canadians will stand with the United States, our greatest friend and ally, in its hour of need.

    On behalf of Canadians, the Prime Minister called for a national day of mourning last Friday. We deeply appreciated that opportunity to express our sorrow and show our unshakeable support for our American neighbours and for Canadians who suffered loss. In a great show of Canadian solidarity and support on Parliament Hill last Friday and in similar ceremonies across the country, Canadians sent that message. The only element missing from that ceremony was the acknowledgment, in this time of sorrow and heartbreak, of our Creator, because in the days ahead it is only with divine wisdom, grace and understanding that we shall overcome.

    As we join with the people of the United States and especially with the families of the victims to remember the dead, let us now dedicate ourselves to protecting the living. The events of September 11 were not merely tragic, like a train wreck or an earthquake. They were evil, as the Prime Minister has said. We must make sure that this kind of evil shall not prevail.

    President Bush has rightly called this struggle the first war of the 21st century. Make no mistake. The war on terrorism is not merely the moral equivalent of war, like a war on drugs or a war on poverty. This is a genuine war, which can only be won, as Sir Winston Churchill said of another long struggle, with blood, toil, tears and sweat. Canada, in invoking article 5 of the NATO charter, has joined with our allies in declaring that this attack on the United States is an attack on ourselves, the first such declaration in the 50 year history of NATO.

    This is not just an American struggle, for the terrorist war is aimed not only at America nor is it being fought only in America. It is being fought throughout the world, including here in Canada. The suicide bombing of the World Trade Center is an attack on Canada as well. Terrorists have declared war on the entire free world and the entire free world must declare war on terrorism.

    This is a war not with ghosts but with real people. Osama bin Laden has been publicly identified as the prime suspect behind these murderous acts. He has been sheltered, if not aided and abetted, and time will tell on that question, by the Taliban regime of Afghanistan. The free world must tell all states that no matter what their ideology, supporting or condoning terror against civilians will never, ever be tolerated.

    However, while bin Laden's al-Qaeda movement or other radical groups from the Middle East may be guilty of these infamous acts, we know that the overwhelming majority of Arabs and Muslims here in Canada and around the world deplore and abhor these attacks as strongly as we do.

    I have discussed this matter with my colleague, the member of parliament for Edmonton--Strathcona, whom I believe is the only Muslim member of the House. He has told me of the sensitivity of this issue in Canada's Muslim community at this difficult time. The true meaning of Islam is surrender to God. The religion of Salaam, or peace, is diametrically opposed to these kinds of evil acts. The Islamic beliefs in peace and brotherhood are among the elements which make our Canadian communities strong and caring places in which to live. At this hour of darkness, let us reach out in a special way to our peaceful Arab and Muslim friends and neighbours here in Canada and let us reject any backlash against the innocent even as we strive to bring the guilty to justice.

  +-(1135)  

[Translation]

    The true teachings of Islam are diametrically opposed to the terrorists' interpretations of them. I am therefore calling upon the public to reach out to our Arab and Muslim friends here in Canada and to reject all forms of discrimination toward innocent individuals.

    Let us not allow the barbarism of a few extremists to taint an entire community or religion. There must indeed be justice, but only for those who are guilty.

[English]

    Canadians do not dwell often on thoughts of war. We are thankful for having enjoyed a long season of peace. When we consider our role in the world, we are more likely to think of Canadians keeping peace than waging war.

    Some in this country have already begun to say that talk of war is overblown and irresponsible and that we must instead address the root causes of terrorism. This is true. Root causes must be addressed, but it is sheer folly, let there be no mistake, when we say that the root cause of terrorism is the terrorists themselves. The hatred that moves them to massacre the innocent can never be negotiated with or reasoned with.

    It is not a matter of shades of grey when it comes to these barbarous acts of evil. It is set in black and white. This is not a time for moral ambiguity. It is a moment of moral clarity. As Canadians, as subjects of this peaceable land, we did not seek this conflict, but however much we might tell ourselves that we are not targets, that we really are not involved and that this is not our war, the reality is that we cannot avoid it. As I said last week, there are no rearguard positions in the struggle against terrorism, only front lines. Canada is on the front line whether we want to be there or not. In the words of Prime Minister Blair:

    People of all faiths and all democratic political persuasions have a common cause: to identify this machine of terror and dismantle it as swiftly as possible.

    In the past when summoned to action in World War I when we were a nation of only some eight million people, 625,000 soldiers went into action from Canada. In World War II we again made a huge effort, especially in relation to the size of our population. As well, in Korea and in the gulf, Canada proved itself ready. We joined with our allies and did our share, sometimes at great cost.

    Now it is no different. The war on terrorism will require real sacrifices and new priorities. Now we must face the difficult question of whether Canada is ready to face this new struggle. Canada is a free and democratic society. It is precisely because we are a free and democratic society with values and desires to protect our way of life that we cannot avoid the awful responsibility of joining the war on terrorism.

    The form of democracy we are privileged to enjoy is the Westminster parliamentary system. In our historic form of democratic government it falls to the leader of Her Majesty's Loyal Opposition to ask difficult and at times painful questions and to pose alternatives as to what the government should do.

    In my address today and in the speeches from Alliance and other opposition members of parliament, we will pose important questions as to whether Canada is sufficiently prepared to face this challenge that has been thrust upon us. For several years the official opposition has consistently raised issues of border security, the integrity of our refugee identification system and the need for more resources for military, security and intelligence purposes. We have drawn attention to terrorist activity within Canada. In our view the government unfortunately has not always responded as fully as it should have to these concerns, but the world has changed since September 11, 2001, and what was an important if sometimes overlooked concern before September 11 has now become an absolute moral imperative since September 11.

    Addressing these issues of national security must now become the single highest priority of the Parliament and the Government of Canada.

  +-(1140)  

[Translation]

    Today, the official opposition does not wish to rehash the past, to dredge up past mistakes by the government; instead we wish to propose concrete and constructive solutions for the future.

[English]

    The official opposition does not want to fix blame. We want to fix the problem.

[Translation]

    Today I would like to propose three important changes that would better equip the Canadian government to engage in its battle against terrorism.

    First, we must equip ourselves with anti-terrorist legislation.

    Second, we must ensure that we have secure borders and airports, by protecting ourselves against professional terrorists.

    Third, we must provide our army, police and security intelligence service with the needed resources to engage in this battle as well as a clear mandate.

[English]

    If Canada was inadequately prepared in some of these areas before September 11, the question before us now is how to respond adequately, now that we know we cannot avoid this fight.

    In 1996, in the wake of the Oklahoma City bombing, the United States brought in comprehensive anti-terrorism legislation in the form of the anti-terrorism and effective death penalty act signed by President Clinton. In Canada the interdepartmental intelligence policy group reviewed the U.S. legislation but concluded “that the need for such a scheme or its potential effectiveness could not be established”.

    In 2000 the United Kingdom, which already had strong anti-terrorism legislation on its books to deal with the threat of the IRA, brought in new sweeping anti-terrorism legislation to deal with international terrorism operating within the U.K.

    The official opposition has pointed to the British terrorism act 2000 as an example of the kind of effective legislation that we feel Canada needs to deal with the threat of terrorist groups operating within our borders.

    Both the U.S. anti-terrorism act of 1996 and the British anti-terrorism act of 2000 took concrete steps to name and outlaw specific terrorist organizations operating within those countries and to ban any fundraising or other support activities on their behalf.

    Yet in Canada the government has avoided the approach of naming and banning specific terrorist organizations and their front groups. This is a step that no longer can be put off.

    Canada is a signatory to and indeed helped to draft the 1999 United Nations international convention for the suppression of the financing of terrorism, which calls for a complete ban on all forms of fundraising for terrorist organizations. Unfortunately Canada has not ratified this convention and has not yet tabled legislation to give it force and effect.

    Bill C-16 which allows the government to strip charitable status from groups raising funds for terrorism is a first tentative step, but it falls short of an outright ban on terrorist fundraising.

[Translation]

    Bill C-16, which is being debated in this parliament, would make it possible for certain groups financing terrorism to be stripped of their not for profit organization status.

    This is a step in the right direction, but we are still a long way from having true anti-terrorist legislation that would ban the financing of terrorism in Canada and eliminate such groups from this country.

[English]

    We know that terrorist groups such as Babbar Khalsa, the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam, the Kurdistan Workers Party and the Irish Republican Army have all raised large amounts of money in Canada and continue to do so. Indeed in 1998 CSIS reported that there were some 50 terrorist groups operating in Canada. In testimony that year before a Senate committee, CSIS Director Ward Elcock said:

    As only a partial list, individuals and groups here have had direct or indirect association with: the 1993 World Trade Center bombing, suicide bombings in Israel, assassinations in India, the murder of tourists in Egypt, the Al Khobar Towers attack in Saudi Arabia and the bombing campaign of the Provisional IRA.

    He went on to say that we cannot become, through inaction or otherwise, what might be called an unofficial state sponsor of terrorism. We cannot allow that to happen.

    Giving the solicitor general and the CCRA the power to strip charitable status from these organizations and their front groups is not good enough. Governments must name these groups, define them, publicly outlaw them and ban all fundraising on their behalf.

    The government should have the power to freeze and seize the assets of terrorist organizations and their front groups. We look forward to more input in this particular area of legislation and we look forward to the government response in this particular area. We must deal with this issue.

    The second broad area I will address is the security of our borders and airports and how we can better screen people arriving in Canada to prevent possible terrorists from reaching Canada in the first place.

    The security of Canada's borders and airports is a vital national and international security issue, but it is also a vital economic issue. Canada relies on a billion dollar a day flow of trade to and from the United States as a linchpin of our economy. Last week's airport and border shutdowns and delays will likely cost our economy tens of millions of dollars.

    The fact that our two countries share the world's largest undefended border is not a right but a privilege. If we expect to maintain the kind of access to the United States and it to us that we have enjoyed in the past, we must now take steps to show our American neighbours that we are every bit as concerned as they are about maintaining security and preventing terrorism and organized crime.

    We remember the threat posed to the Canadian economy by the illegal immigration reform and immigrant responsibility act passed by the U.S. Congress in 1997. It was only significant and hard lobbying by the Canadian embassy and others that won changes to the legislation to exempt the Canadian-U.S. border. Will that be the case after September 11, 2001? We must work in this regard with all diligence.

    What kind of measures may be necessary to ensure security at our points of entry? Our critics in that area have been working diligently with security forces and others to help identify the things that must be done. We will consider the various ideas being brought forward and suggested, whether it is increased implementation of electronic passport screening or the idea of air marshals and other steps that must be taken to grant security on our airlines.

    At our land borders Canada customs officers should be issued the right training and equipment to deal with the increased security that will be required there. Our critics in that area will bring forward specific items related to those areas.

    There is no question that these steps and others will cost more money. The United States Congress has already authorized $40 billion in spending as simply a first instalment on clean up measures and anti-terrorist activities.

    The official opposition will support new spending in these areas, even if it means going beyond certain current spending plans, as long as we are assured that other spending in low and falling priority areas is carefully pruned.

    Most of these changes can be done through a reallocation of resources and an attack on wasteful spending. This type of scrutiny is difficult with a government which has refused to table a full budget, but that will be the subject of another day. We are focused on these issues. We are focused on solutions.

  +-(1145)  

    We also must look at tougher screening systems being put in place to keep people who pose security risks to Canadians and others from entering the country in the first place. For those currently in the refugee identification system who have not yet received landed status or citizenship we need better tracking to make sure we are able to locate possible security risks. To do that rapidly this should be an immediate priority. We need the resources and the will to do that.

    We are known as a country which welcomes with open arms refugees who are seeking freedom and democracy. Unfortunately we are also known somewhat to be soft in not identifying and dealing rapidly with those who are a risk. Refugee claimants who break the law or people who enter this country illegally, especially where there are concerns about security risks, should be immediately detained or deported, not simply asked to check in at an Immigration Canada office once or twice or month.

  +-(1150)  

    We must take the proper steps in this regard. We need to do this and we need to do it with all diligence.

    Bill C-11 which is currently before the House does not address many of these concerns. It represents in some ways a step backward from the previous Bill C-31 which died on the order paper before the last election. Bill C-11 should be amended to include broader measures to ensure the security and integrity of our refugee system and should be returned to the House.

    As U.S. Secretary of State Colin Powell has pointed out, the war against terrorism in which we are now engaged will be unlike other wars. The enemy is both at home and abroad. They do not take openly to the battlefield but hide in shadows. While this effort may involve conventional warfare against states who harbour or sponsor terrorist cells, we must recognize, as has been identified, that they are also present inside Canada and the United States.

    Fighting the multi-headed monster of terrorism means attacking all its operations and doing it simultaneously. We will address in detail the area and concerns of the Canadian Security Intelligence Service which has lost 28% of its personnel in the last decade. We will address the areas of the RCMP and its situations related to lost resources. Of course the largest infusion of resources will have to go to the beleaguered Canadian armed forces.

    Over the last year the Canadian forces has declined from 90,000 to 55,000 personnel and is on track for further declines. This is a dereliction of our duty. We must support our armed forces and send that message to our NATO partners around the world.

    Last week NATO invoked article 5 for the first time in its history. President Bush made it clear that he is building an international coalition to combat not only terrorist cells but their state sponsors. We must work with and be part of that coalition. Unfortunately the Taliban regime in Afghanistan has resorted to belligerent rhetoric about its support for Osama bin Laden rather than co-operating with the United States. The prospect of a conventional military campaign is not remote.

    If and when the need arises for military action, the United States and NATO will expect Canada to provide a commitment. We must be willing and prepared to provide it. It is for this reason that I am asking the Prime Minister to be crystal clear regarding our commitment to the United States and NATO up to and including, if necessary, military involvement within our capacity to do so.

    NATO is perhaps the most successful military and political alliance in history. Its decisions on military action are made with both care and deliberation. We are obliged to be part of that. Now more than ever Canada's voice and vote of commitment needs to be heard in the clearest of terms, both in the camps of our friends and the hidden dens of our enemies.

    This weekend we have heard the menacing threats. We have heard warnings against freedom loving nations not to assist the United States in any military action. Our government must be clear. It is not the time to give any signal to the barbaric enemies of freedom and democracy that we will do anything less than stand shoulder to shoulder with our friends, the Americans and our NATO partners, in the face of this insidious threat.

    This is not a time for half measures. It is not a time to bring forward previously announced initiatives and relabel them as anti-terrorist measures. There are some positive elements in current proposals like Bill C-16 and Bill C-11, but they do not go far enough. We must carry them forward. We must do everything that is within our power and will to do.

    We will continue to bring forward constructive criticisms and suggestions. They will be put forward in a spirit of unity and solidarity with the Prime Minister and his cabinet as we enter this first war of the new century.

    I hope the Prime Minister will accept these constructive criticisms and suggestions in the spirit in which they are given: for the furtherance of our common goal to defeat terrorism at home and abroad.

    Over the next few weeks there will be times to discuss and debate whether we are moving fast enough or far enough in certain areas. There will be times to debate whether Canada could have or should have been more prepared. However today is a day to show unity and resolve.

    We show unity in standing with our American neighbours, especially the families of the victims of these horrible attacks. We show unity in mourning our own Canadian dead. We show resolve in facing the enemy of international terrorism and announcing that terror in all its forms will not be allowed to stand.

  +-(1155)  

    Last week the world saw the face of evil. However good may yet be able to arise out of the evil if the citizens of the free countries of the world rise as one, say that this evil shall not stand, and work together to eliminate it from the earth.

[Translation]

    In closing, I would like to say that I am proud to join with the government in supporting this motion. I trust it will be first of many actions we will take together as parliamentarians and as Canadians, united in this war against terrorism.

[English]

    In these next days and weeks may God grant wisdom to our Prime Minister and to this parliament. God save our Queen. God keep our land glorious and free.

  +-(1200)  

[Translation]

+-

    Mr. Gilles Duceppe (Laurier--Sainte-Marie, BQ): Mr. Speaker, we have just gone through terrible times and we are still feeling their effect.

    On September 11, the International Day of Peace, what an ironic coincidence, New York City and Washington were the focus of a deadly demented terrorist attack.

    Our first thoughts go to the men and women, the victims of this terrible attack, to their families, spouses, brothers, sisters, fathers and mothers and to the rescuers who also died attempting to save their lives, as well as to the Canadians and Quebecers who perished in the attack.

    On behalf of the members of the Bloc Quebecois and the people they represent, I offer my condolences to the families and to the American people.

    Last week and still today we have seen the worst and the best of the human condition. The worst, in the fanaticism of the terrorists blinded by hate, and the best in the solidarity of the rescuers and of the people of the United States, Canada, Quebec and the whole world.

    On Friday, the day of mourning, we were all New Yorkers. We support this motion. We want it to be given effect in a debate of calm. We must provide the best leadership we can, calmly, serenely, peacefully, remembering that anger is legitimate. It most certainly is legitimate, but it is not to be trusted.

    We must analyze the situation calmly, realistically, clearly and determinedly. We must remember always that we are the defenders of freedom and democracy. This fact must remain at the heart of all our concerns.

    We must make brave decisions but weigh the effect of these decisions on the future of our society, of democracy and of the world.

    We must remember that the attack on September 11 is an attack not only on the United States, but on democratic values, on freedom and on every country that defends these values. It is an attack on all peoples of the world who aspire to justice, freedom and democracy and especially those living under the yoke of tyrants and cranks, such as the people of Afghanistan, who face the totalitarian terror of the Taliban daily.

    We must remember that the attack on September 11 is not the work of Muslims or Arabs but of terrorists. Terrorism knows no nationality and neither should democracy.

+-

     Terrorists have attacked our democratic values. If we radically change the way we live, then we are playing right into their hands. We must find the right balance between security measures designed to protect people, obviously, and the central role of freedom in our society. The choices that we need to make are about security, yes, but first and foremost, they are societal choices.

    A response is required. Terrorists must answer for their acts, as must those who sponsor them. They must be brought to justice, as the motion states, and I support the motion for this part, among others, of the resolution at hand. This must be done within a framework of the largest possible coalition of countries that live by democratic values, and in granting a greater role to international institutions, such as the UN or the International Criminal Tribunal.

    I support the fact that Canada adheres to article 5 of the NATO Treaty; however, this does not mean that we should give carte blanche to any and all measures. Parliament and our democratic institutions must always debate issues, be consulted, and decide on them. This is the democratic example that we must set to the rest of the world.

    The response must reflect and respect our democratic values. We must not fall into the trap of a civilization or religious war. Let us be respectful of God and Allah. Let us not get them involved in the wars of men. This is not a war between good and evil. We must avoid this reasoning, which only serves the bin Ladens of this world too well. Too often, we resort to evil to justify the empire of the good. But empires can never serve the good.

    I know that terrorism is horrible, that religious fundamentalism is despicable and that fanaticism generates evil. As democrats, we must see that those responsible are punished but, more importantly, we must promote democracy, because only peoples living under a reign of terror will be able to put an end to the fanaticism that stifles them. Great democracies such as the United States of America, the first democracy in the history of mankind, Canada, Quebec, the European Union and all the countries guided by democratic values must act.

    Fanaticism develops in a fertile ground, just like mushrooms thrive on rot. If we want to eliminate not only bin Laden but others who may manifest themselves, we must tackle the rotten situations that allow fanatism to develop, including poverty, the absence of democracy and dictatorship. Such is the challenge we must meet.

    We must also avoid falling into blind pacifism and reacting to effects rather than to causes. The pacifists of 1939 were wrong and we ended up with Hitler. In 1991, we went to war against Saddam Hussein. He is still in office, his people are still suffering and he taking advantage of the situation like other despots who are leading countries in a dictatorial fashion while being billionaires.

    This is a turning point for our democracies, which are threatened directly at home, not far from here. However, this is not the first war of the 21st century. Since the beginning of the year 2000, wars have been going on in the Middle East, in Chechnya, in Angola and in several other locations around the world.

  +-(1205)  

    However this is a new kind of war where civilians are not only attacked, but also used in a cowardly, inhuman and insane fashion.

    We owe it to all those who died to be responsible, vigilant and determined. We have a duty to make freedom and democracy prevail, as well as their underlying values, so that the death of these people will not have been in vain.

    My party will support the motion.

+-

    Ms. Alexa McDonough (Halifax, NDP): Mr. Speaker, I rise today to join with all Canadians, who are still in a state of shock and who are trying to deal with overwhelming feelings of anger, disgust, pain and rage.

    The horrific events experienced by our neighbours to the south last week are unbelievable.

[English]

    I want to begin by reaffirming that the New Democratic Party joins with citizens around the world in demanding that the perpetrators of these heinous crimes be tracked down and punished.

[Translation]

    The statement I issued after the ghastly events of last Tuesday was couched in the strongest language I could find to express all of the revulsion felt by my colleagues and myself.

[English]

    I also call for reflection and restraint in our response. Today I want to reinforce that plea, the plea that the same values that cause us to be outraged and repulsed by these acts of barbarity must guide us all and particularly world leaders in their response.

    I think our Prime Minister, on behalf of all Canadians who share those sentiments, rose to the occasion and provided very sound words and wise counsel to that effect.

    In these extremely dangerous times it is essential that we reaffirm our commitment to pursuing peaceful solutions to the tensions and hostilities that breed such mindless violence in our world.

    In the immediate aftermath of the horrific death and destruction, people were driven understandably to demand instant, massive military retaliation to these terrorist atrocities. However, as freedom loving citizens have grasped the complexity and magnitude of what has happened, the imperative of a more measured response, more multilateral response and more informed response must form the basis of our actions. “Not to respond would be unthinkable: it would diminish and demean American leadership and would surely invite further attacks”, wrote Charles G. Boyd, a retired air force general, in Wednesday's Washington Post. “But to react excessively or inaccurately,” he wrote, “would put us on the same moral footing as the cowards who perpetrated yesterday's attack.”

    Canadians know that we have a very special relationship with the United States of America and we value that relationship with our neighbour to the south but we also have a special role internationally. If there were ever a time that both our neighbours to the south and the world needed to hear the voice of Canada, it is now.

    Our neighbours were thrown into a state of shock last week. As the depth and breadth of the personal tragedies come to grip their collective soul, the cry of vengeance from many quarters will surely grow louder. As America's closest neighbour and friend, we owe it to them to listen and to support but we must also give them the benefit of our understanding of the events.

    A true friend lends a guiding hand when someone is blinded by grief and rage.

    The cry from America today and from around the world is that this can never be allowed to happen again. We must resolve to see that this can never happen again but if we pursue the path of blind vengeance, the path of the clenched fist, we are guaranteeing that this will happen again. Military strikes, while they may satisfy an understandable desire for vengeance, will solve nothing if thousands more innocent people are victimized in some other part of the world.

    A survivor of the '93 World Trade Center bomb blast said:

    As I silently remember my friends and co-workers who have perished, I know only this: If we fail to wage peace instead of war, if we do not learn to value all life as fervently as we value our own, then their deaths will mean nothing; and terror and violence will remain our dark companions.

  +-(1210)  

    In the House three decades ago the first leader of the New Democratic Party, Tommy Douglas, stated “our task is to understand the forces at work in our society and to seek to influence them toward constructive ends. We need to ask ourselves some hard questions”.

    It seems to me that at a terrible time like this we could do well to ask ourselves what wise counsel Lester Pearson might offer.

    In the wake of these terrifying events, we need to reflect on the kind of international community we have created, where the images of mass destruction in the United States last week saw some Palestinian children actually dancing in the streets, where an international community can allow 5,000 children a month to die of malnutrition in Iraq, or hunger and preventable disease can claim the lives of thousands and thousands of children in the too many impoverished nations of the world.

    We have to ask ourselves and consider what it means. What kind of political leadership funds and trains the likes of the mujahedeen and Osama bin Laden to overthrow the Afghanistan government and then gets caught out when these same people turn their evil skills on their former supporters?

    Unless and until we base our policies and our allegiances on long term values, as the Prime Minister said this morning, and not on short term strategies, we will continue to create the monsters that come back to haunt us.

    We need to tell the world that in the eyes of Canada the wanton destruction of life and property is absolutely unacceptable. Whether it is in the United States or in Rwanda, whether it is in Washington or Beirut, Baghdad or Bosnia, we need the world to know that we practise what we preach in Canada. We need Canada to know the work of Tommy Douglas who said “the means we use largely determine the ends we achieve and that resorting to violence destroys the goals that we seek before we even reach them”. He spoke of a standard by which we must all judge our actions.

    Let me be clear. I am not advocating pacifism or appeasement in the face of aggression. The international community must spare no effort in bringing to justice all those responsible for these atrocities and rid the world of the scourge of terrorism.

    However this response must be carried out in accordance with the principle of the rule of law. As many as 100 Canadians may have died in this crime. Along with the United States' loss of thousands, as many as 40 other countries have lost sons and daughters. This is a crime against humanity and an international court should mete out the punishment. No country should be called upon to be the judge, the jury and the executioner, least of all the country that has suffered the greatest loss.

    Supporting foreign invasions, assassinations and the abandonment of our values will raise the level of violence, lessen our security and diminish our capacity to advise our closest friends at a time when they are most in need of wise counsel.

    We have seen the results of ever increasing levels of violence in other parts of the world. Indeed, this act is not an isolated incident directed at America alone.

  +-(1215)  

    If the initial assumptions about culpability or inspiration about this attack are true, this is the latest gruesome chapter in an ever expanding cycle of violence that has already claimed cities, countries and whole generations. How does it increase our security to bomb countries into the stone age?

    I would like to address very disturbing developments over the course of the past week where visible minorities have been targeted by people looking for scapegoats, both here in Canada and abroad. Other leaders have addressed this issue as well.

    The very ugliest and most horrifying incident was surely the fire bombing of a mosque in Montreal, but we have all heard about other incidents. The Canadian Council for Refugees in its statement of September 14 wisely reminded us that many Canadians came to this country to escape from violence and persecution on the basis of religion, race or nationality. Refugees and immigrants are as horrified as anyone by the events and condemn the violence. Canadians need to work to ensure that our country is a haven from hatred and discrimination.

    In the coming days we will surely hear arguments that we re-examine our immigration policy and procedures. We have already heard some. We in the NDP agree that much needs to be done to overhaul our immigration system but with an eye toward greater compassion, security and efficiency.

    As we debate this issue, I invite all members of the House to remember that their words and the passions that they excite can have very real repercussions on the many new Canadians and visible minorities that make up the diversity and the beauty of our great land.

    It is reassuring that so many voices have been heard; political leaders, community leaders and ordinary citizens counselling against doing anything to create a backlash and to create prejudicial attitudes and actions directed toward innocent Canadians.

    Let us extend that same concern and consideration to other countries. A wise, elderly woman, Muriel Duckworth, who has been a lifelong friend of peace said to me over the weekend that there was surely a lesson for us to learn and hear in our own words. If we are absolutely in agreement that we must stand against any scapegoating of innocent civilians in our own country, then surely the same consideration and concern has to be extended to innocent civilians around the world.

    The coming debate will lead us into other areas of domestic concern such as whether or not we are to participate in the proposed national missile defence. There could be no clearer example of the redundancy of such a system than the terrorists' atrocities that were committed in the United States last week. The brutal and simple logic of what we have witnessed is that immense damage can be caused without a single missile ever being launched. We live in an age where weapons of mass destruction can be transported in suitcases or commandeered with a knife.

    As Shimon Peres of Israel last week stated:

     Up until now, the entire world was organized into armies and enemies. Today, the classic armies remain, yet the classic enemies have practically vanished. In their place, there are now new threats, which were unknown to us--primary among them is the threat of terrorism. Strategy, tactics and organized forces have yet to be developed against terrorism. The fundamental and true conclusion is that a strategy must be developed, and military and security organizations must be established, which will prevent terrorism.

  +-(1220)  

    Canada must be a leader in searching out these solutions. We need to call upon our earlier traditions of having a more independent foreign policy. We need to always think in terms of multilateralism. We need to use our special relationship with the United States to represent all progressive and peace loving countries that want to build lasting solutions to the conditions that breed such horrendous violence.

    We surely can do no better than to heed the words of John F. Kennedy when he stated that those who make peaceful revolution impossible make violent revolution inevitable.

+-

    Right Hon. Joe Clark (Calgary Centre, PC/DR): Mr. Speaker, I am honoured to take part in this debate on behalf of my colleagues in the parliamentary coalition.

    Six days and a few hours ago the world we knew changed brutally and forever when hijacked planes were flown deliberately into crowded buildings with the explicit purpose of killing innocent people and breaking the confidence of societies built upon freedom and order. Our hearts go out to the individuals and families, including far too many Canadians, who have been struck directly. The shock and the losses that engulf those families are almost beyond belief.

    This atrocity was unexpected as well as brutal. The victims started their day Tuesday, as we all did, expecting the ordinary. Suddenly, without warning, without reason, their precious lives were taken by a terrible, premeditated strike against order and humanity.

    My young nephew, Scott Delaney, worked until very recently on the 51st floor of the World Trade Center. He was scheduled six days and a few hours ago to go back there for a job interview. Another obligation intervened and he did not go. That chance decision saved his life, just as the deliberate decision of the terrorists stole the lives, the futures and the hopes of thousands of sons, daughters and friends from around the world.

  +-(1225)  

[Translation]

    Last Tuesday's tragedy shook the entire world. On that day, all of us became victims, victims of acts of horrific cruelty aimed at creating upheaval in public order and all of humanity. The world we live in today is far different from the one we were living in only six short days ago. On September 11, 2001 the face of the world changed and it, and we, will never be the same again.

    Words will never be enough to express our sadness or our support for those who have lost family members or friends. However, as well as extending our thoughts and prayers, we also wish to express our determination to make sure that, despite the tragic and murderous consequences of terrorism, free societies will never give in to terrorist acts and that the values we hold so dear will continue to prevail.

[English]

    We can never grieve enough for those victims, for their families, for the futures that were torn away. We must offer them more than our grief, more than our sympathy and more than our prayers. We owe them our determination to ensure that while terrorists can take lives, they cannot destroy free societies.

    I want to echo very strongly a sentiment expressed by other leaders in the House; that an essential element of our free society is that we judge people on their character and accomplishments, not upon where they come from, not upon their colour and not upon their faith.

    The people who committed this atrocity are extremists. That is who they are. We must be very careful that in responding to this crisis that we do not create new victims or blame whole communities for the acts of people who in any society would be judged extremists. To be clear and for the record; all of us in the House know that no one is more shocked or more offended by this atrocity in the United States than members of the Canadian Arab and Muslim communities. No one is more offended than they are.

    If we in this parliament seek to be fair, so must we be forceful. Our response must be effective, focused and strong. This is a challenge in which Canada must play a leading role. We are not neutral on issues of terror, freedom and order. They reach to the heart and the core of our nature as a nation.

    The Prime Minister said that Canada should not become a fortress against the world. That is true. However, Canada should be a fortress in the world, a nation known by our friends and allies to be strong and reliable. That is the challenge for Canada in the months to come.

    At our best, Canada's role in the world has been to ensure that freedom and order prevail and prevail together. We have done this in times of war and we have done that in times of peace. We have earned a reputation as a nation that stands on the frontline of defending and advancing free societies. That is where it must stand now.

    I congratulate the Prime Minister for the firmness he finally showed on Friday. This nation, our people, our traditions, our parliament and government can play leading roles in shaping the world's response to this new terror. That is what Canada does in this difficult world. We put our values to work. We did that when NATO was formed, when peacekeeping was established, when new treaties of trade were framed and when apartheid was fought. We must do that now with our closest friends next door and with our allies against terror around the world.

    The place to start is with one stark and simple fact. Our world changed profoundly Tuesday morning. People and places that once felt secure, now feel exposed. Systems of protection and prevention, which on Monday night seemed adequate, were proven Tuesday to be brutally inadequate.

    We must rebuild that sense of security. Indeed, free people themselves are already doing that. What we are seeing in the long lines of volunteers at blood banks and in the people going back to work in places that so recently were targets is more than just compassion, or courage or defiance.

    It represents the strength of the values which we have always claimed free systems nourish: the optimism, the activism, the balance in resisting a rush to judgment and, most of all, the palpable sense of personal and community responsibility in such a material and self-indulgent world.

  +-(1230)  

    One sometimes wonders whether those values will erode. Now they have been put to a shocking test. They are robust and resilient, rational and responsible.

    Those attacks also demonstrate how much the world has changed. How wrong it would be for us to pretend that old ways work and how urgent it is to deal with the real threats of Tuesday, of today and of tomorrow.

[Translation]

    We must rebuild the feeling of security Canadians enjoyed, whether rightly or wrongly, until last Tuesday. This time, however, we have an obligation to rebuild it on a solid foundation, to immediately undertake all necessary steps to ensure that such a tragedy does not take place ever again.

    The government must imitate the speed with which Canadians moved into action. After this massacre, the Canadian people immediately moved into action with all the vigour of a friend or family member.

    We parliamentarians have an obligation to follow their example of prompt action, to not abandon them, to take indepth actions immediately, to ensure that the necessary changes are made without delay. In these days of mourning and deep distress, our leaders have a duty to console Canadians, and the only concrete action possible will be to ensure that this is done.

[English]

    This is work in which the whole nation should be engaged and certainly work in which all the nation's representatives assembled here in parliament should be engaged.

    The government has come to parliament with a resolution, that the House of Commons, representing all of Canada, can do much more than resolve. We can be and we should be an active instrument of Canada's response to this terror.

    With agreement, which I am sure would exist, the government could act today to authorize the committees of the House on transport, immigration, justice, foreign affairs and other relevant matters to begin immediately to gather evidence and to gather advice in public on what changes we need to make our nation more secure.

    These issues are too important to be left to ministers and public servants meeting in secret. The changes that may be required may be too radical to leave to the custodians of the status quo.

    If the government is serious about an honest analysis of our system, let it trust parliament to help in that work. Let parliament reach out to the people who elect us so they can be reassured in this time of doubt.

    The government cannot close its mind in advance to changes in any area or policy related to security. It must be prepared to reconsider funding levels to CSIS. It must be prepared to examine immigration policy, airport security, aircraft security, border security and the activities of groups that might be associated with terrorism.

    Even before Tuesday's tragedy the government was warned of weaknesses in our security arrangements. The Leader of the Opposition has mentioned several actions which Canada could have taken.

    In that spirit, let me quote from the CSIS report released on June 12, 2001, less than three months before planes ploughed into the Pentagon and the World Trade Center towers:

    Terrorism in the years ahead is expected to become more violent, indiscriminate and unpredictable...There will likely be terrorist attacks whose sole aim would be to incite terror itself. A hardening attitude, and a willingness on behalf of certain terrorist organizations in North America, reinforce the belief that Canadians, now more than ever, are potential victims, and Canada a potential venue, for terrorist attacks.

    That was the warning given by CSIS to parliament, to government, less than three months before the attacks of Tuesday. Let me quote from the auditor general's report of 2000, which said the Department of Immigration:

—could also improve the way it collects criminal intelligence information...gathered by various stakeholders.

    It said that information is not systematically exchanged because computer systems are not compatible and data are not always shared among the Department of Immigration, the RCMP and CSIS.

    That was a warning more than a year ago by the Auditor General of Canada about our capacity to deal with people who might be seeking to come here to wreak terror on this continent, elsewhere in the world, or here in our home.

    Those are only two examples among many of the warnings that were given and not acted upon. They are clearly areas where the government can act now, immediately, to strengthen the security of Canada and of the world.

    Parliament should be given a detailed description of what the government now knows about the Tuesday attacks. Parliament should be told what changes the government is now contemplating, what reviews of policy it plans, what military, intelligence or other role Canada can play in a campaign against the terrorists.

    If some of that information is confidential then let the government give that information to parliamentary leaders on a confidential basis.

  +-(1235)  

    This is a Canadian concern. This is parliament's concern. This is not a matter reserved to those who sit in the secrecy of the Privy Council Office. To rebuild the trust of the public, to rebuild the trust of our allies, to rebuild the trust of financial markets, parliament must be fully informed and advised.

    The Tuesday attacks have obvious economic implications, implications for growth, for revenues, for spending priorities. This government has yet to present a full budget to Canadians.

    We know the minister's revenue forecasts were wrong before the attack. Parliament and Canadians have a right to know what the facts are now. We need to know the costs of the projected new spending the government has proposed.

    As those new figures must be known within the government which authorized the spending, let the public know so the public can be heard in deciding whether these priorities are more important than the priority of making our nation secure.

    It is not often that we recognize a turning point in history, but we are a different world than we were a week ago. However let us bear this in mind. The technology of terror did not change. Nor did the purpose of terror, which is and always has been quite precisely to explode the order and the confidence which are the bases on which most of us live our lives.

    What changed was the audacity of the terrorists. They have warned us that the threat runs wider than it did before. That means that our response must change, must be broader, tougher, itself more audacious.

    This was a calculated attack upon the kind of open and safe society in which Canadians believe so profoundly. It was a direct attack on us, on all of us, and we must be prepared to respond directly.

    We must deny the terrorists the psychological victory they seek. We must organize ourselves to protect and assert the civilized values that were so deliberately attacked. No nation has a greater stake in that response than Canada, and we must play our full part.

  +-(1240)  

[Translation]

    Our grieving will continue for days, months and years to come, but today, immediately, we have a duty to act to ensure that the values we hold so dear, the values that characterize us, prevail.

[English]

    In the next few days, months and years we will grieve, but now we must also act to ensure that the values we hold so dear prevail.

    That will involve hard decisions. It will require us to apply our values in the context of a new, changed, real tough world. The world needs an active Canadian government and at a time when democracies are under scrutiny an active Canadian parliament.

    We have an opportunity to shape this new world if we are prepared to look at these issues, open to new realities, determined to play a role of leadership. The world needs Canada's leadership and strength now and this parliament, I am confident, would be prepared to support a government that showed that kind of leadership.

+-

    Hon. John Manley (Minister of Foreign Affairs, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I will be dividing my time with the solicitor general. As others have observed, last Tuesday the world changed for Canada, for everyone. Our friend and close ally was viciously attacked. Thousands of innocents were murdered and all of humanity grievously wounded.

[Translation]

    All Canadians, both inside the country and abroad, were deeply affected by these events. Our lives will forever be marked.

    Last Friday, 100,000 Canadians gathered on Parliament Hill to share their grief.

    I was flying over the Atlantic when the crew discreetly took me aside to inform me of the tragic events that had just occurred in New York, in Washington and in Pennsylvania.

[English]

    It is difficult to describe how it felt to have this terrible knowledge which could not be revealed to the several hundred people sitting with me on the Air Canada 747, not to mention the sense of unreality that the circumstances provoked.

    We share the loss, suffering and pain of the people of the United States. We also grieve for the Canadians who have been affected in very direct ways. At this time some 40 to 75 Canadians are still unaccounted for, presumed victims of these acts of cowardice.

    Our sorrow is deep; our sympathy is heartfelt; our solidarity is complete and so is our resolve. Each Canadian has responded in his or her own way by volunteering, offering flowers and cards at embassies and consulates of the United States, and seeking consolation in assemblies of worship.

    Words like random and senseless have been used to describe the attacks which are believed by many to have been provoked by simple hatred.

    Unsettling in its organization and shocking in its execution, this was a cold hearted, calculated attack upon our civility and way of life. It was an attack upon democracy. Our core values, our most elemental principles and most crucially our people have been violated. It offends the very essence of everything Canadians hold dear and precious.

    This is what the terrorists have sought to destroy but can never be permitted to destroy within our society, the NATO alliance and the global community of just, democratic nations and law-abiding, tolerant peoples.

    We are now at war against terrorism, but it is unlike any war we have fought before. We must be precise, even clinical, in our actions. We must be prepared to use all the tools, diplomatic, legal, financial as well as military resources, at our disposal to combat this evil.

    In our determination to punish the perpetrators we must ensure that we root out the evil without enabling the creation of a new army of dedicated extremists. This outrage must and will be answered. Our answer must be sober and well judged but resounding and resolute.

    The terrorist attacks on the United States have profound implications for Canada's security and prosperity, for the way we govern ourselves and for how Canadians will lead their lives from now on.

    However we will not live in fear. Nor will our actions and responses be dictated by it. We are a nation of principle. Our foreign policy and practices will remain rooted in principle, but we cannot for one moment deceive ourselves that life can go on as it was before.

  +-(1245)  

[Translation]

    In the days and weeks to come, we will have to try to see beyond these horrible events and their traumatic consequences to try to understand what all this will mean from now on for our country and for the whole world.

    For our democracy, the most pressing issue is to know how to achieve, under the new circumstances, a balance between individual freedom, which is a pillar of our democratic society, and our duty to protect citizens.

    Our reaction will impact on all aspects of our lives.

  +-(1250)  

[English]

+-

     Our security, in its broadest possible political, economic and military senses, is inextricably linked to the United States of America. This is not just because of NATO or NORAD and not just because we share a common border or the world's most important trading relationship. Our common values and political ideals bind us. It is our willingness to defend these very ideals, indeed our very societies, that unites us.

    The government and the people of Canada have demonstrated our solidarity with the United States, whatever it takes. Our commitment is total. We will give our undivided support to the United States.

    We have, together with our closest allies, moved to invoke article 5 of the NATO charter for the first time in the 52 year history of the alliance. This step indicates the iron resolve of all alliance members to act in self-defence against this evil. The perpetrators of this terror and those who abet or harbour them will be held accountable.

    The United Nations and the UN security council have underlined this point in their forceful condemnation of the attacks. There is no doubt that the issue will also figure highly on the G-8 agenda for the coming year when Canada assumes the presidency. This is the path of multilateralism.

    It is critical that members of the international community act as one. Words alone in support of a world in which the rule of law prevails will not be enough. There must be consequences for those who violate the most basic standards of human behaviour.

    This is at its heart a human crisis. Our most immediate priority in its aftermath has been to provide assistance to Canadians caught up in these tragic events. Our consular staff in New York, Ottawa and elsewhere have been working literally around the clock to respond to their concerns. I am also grateful to members of parliament and senators for their assistance on behalf of concerned constituents.

    The response of all Canadians to these events has been a source of pride for all of us in the House. Whether giving blood, volunteering their services or opening their towns and even their homes to the more than 40,000 stranded and worried travellers diverted to Canada last week, Canadians have lived their values. President Bush, Secretary Powell and Prime Minister Blair have thanked Canada for this.

[Translation]

    This is a defining moment for Canada and for the world in which we live. The response to this unprecedented tragedy will require a sound judgment, strong conviction and extraordinary courage.

[English]

    The time has come for all Canadians to reflect on what this terrifying event means for Canada and all nations around the globe. It is time to reaffirm our values, our obligations and our most important alliance. It is time to act to ensure that the guilty are brought to account and that the world emerges a safer, more secure and more peaceful place.

+-

    Mr. Bill Casey (Cumberland—Colchester, PC/DR): Mr. Speaker, I compliment the minister on his remarks and for acknowledging the response of Canadians. Before I get into my question I will mention a small group of incredible firefighters from a little community in my riding called River Hebert that went immediately to New York with no indication as to whether or not their services would be accepted. They volunteered to go and take whatever action they had to. They are down there now.

    The minister referred to the most important alliance we have. About two weeks ago the leader of our parliamentary coalition, the member for Calgary Centre, led a small group of us to meet with the vice-president of the United States. He proposed two actions to the vice-president. One was that the vice-president send officials from the department of defence and the department of state to Canada to brief parliamentarians on their missile defence system. The vice-president seemed very open to the idea.

    Another suggestion he made to the vice-president was that the Canadian and American governments re-establish regular quarterly meetings of key ministers such as the foreign and finance ministers with their U.S. counterparts and alternate the location of the meetings between Canada and U.S. Such meetings used to be in place but were discontinued.

    He also proposed a series of biannual meetings between the Prime Minister and the President of the United States.

    Considering that things have changed dramatically in the last week, could the minister express his opinion on those two proposals? Would he consider extending an invitation to the U.S. to send a contingent to Canada to present Canadian parliamentarians with its actions, positions and plans with respect to the missile defence system?

    With respect to American plans to counteract terrorism in the world, would the minister also consider the proposal by the leader of our coalition to re-establish ongoing regular meetings between the ministers and the leaders?

  +-(1255)  

+-

    Hon. John Manley: Mr. Speaker, all information on any subject that the U.S. authorities wish to make available to parliamentarians would be welcome. I encourage the hon. member to use the House committee structure to invite whatever authorities he feels are appropriate to come and provide information, either formally at a hearing or informally. I assure him that not only would I not object to it but that, if asked, I would encourage the U.S. to do so.

    On the matter of regular meetings, they were established when the secretary of state was George Shultz and the minister of external affairs was the hon. Allan MacEachen. They were discontinued when the current leader of the Conservative Party was minister of external affairs.

    I have raised the matter of regular meetings between the foreign minister and the secretary of state with the U.S. authorities. We will see whether it is something that is practical and can be conducted.

    Quite apart from whether they are scheduled, I can assure the hon. member that we are in regular and frequent contact at the ministerial level and the prime ministerial level with our counterparts in the United States. That has been especially the case during the last six days.

+-

    Mr. John Reynolds (West Vancouver--Sunshine Coast, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, the minister said during his speech that there are profound implications for Canada in what happened last week.

    Could the minister tell the House some of the things the government is planning in the weeks to come? What type of legislation or laws are we looking at to protect all Canadians? What is our involvement in the whole situation?

+-

    Hon. John Manley: Mr. Speaker, it is undeniable that the events of last Tuesday force us to review all our practices and policies and consider whether a response is necessary. I do not think it should be hasty. I do not think it should be ill-considered. However it needs to be firm and resolute. We will take the action that is required.

    The hon. member will appreciate that if I were to offer a set of options today they would not be well thought out. They would be too hasty. The government will need to take time, with the assistance of members of the House, to consider what responses need to be given to the threat which now becomes more evident to us than it was before.

+-

    Hon. Lawrence MacAulay (Solicitor General of Canada, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, indeed the world has changed. Nobody will forget where they were on Tuesday, September 11, 2001, when these vicious attacks took place. We witnessed and suffered a tragedy that changed our landscape forever. Our hearts go out to the victims, the families and the whole nation.

    As the Prime Minister said, terrorist acts are an offence against the freedoms and rights of all civilized nations and cannot go unpunished. We must now come together as a nation, as a continent and as an international community to take the strongest possible stand against the evil of terrorists.

    Canada and the United States share a very special relationship. We are bound not only by geography and history but by the democratic values that form the bedrock of our societies. Canada has no better friend than our neighbour to the south. No two countries work closer together.

    As the House will know, I have pledged my complete co-operation with the U.S. authorities investigating these monstrous attacks. Canadian officials, volunteers, law enforcement and security officers are still working around the clock with their American counterparts. My officials are in constant contact with their U.S. counterparts to reinforce my pledge of support. They have assured me that our agencies are providing any and all assistance to our American friends.

    As I have said before, all leads will be followed and no stone left unturned. Our pledge to support the United States through this difficult time reflects our commitment to stand shoulder to shoulder with it on this great continent which remains, in Churchill's words, “united and undaunted”.

    Today I want to assure the House that our excellent working relationship with the United States in law enforcement and security and intelligence matters will continue and grow stronger because by doing so we will improve the safety of all our citizens.

    It has been said that the only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good people to do nothing. The horrific events of the past week have made one thing crystal clear: stopping terrorism is something we absolutely must do. And we will, make no mistake about it.

    A great deal of work has already been done to deal with transnational crime. Public safety has been the number one shared priority directing these strong partnership efforts. We have put mechanisms in place to deal with issues relating to our border, to crime and to terrorism. We have brought together agencies and departments from both sides of the border to fight terrorism.

    For example, the Canada-U.S. cross-border crime forum is an achievement that is unique in the world. Its creation, followed by an agreement between our Prime Minister and the President of the United States, was truly a turning point in our cross-border relationship.

    The forum is led by myself and the attorney general of the United States. It is unique because of its success in increasing the effectiveness of our joint efforts in cross-border security and law enforcement issues. It brings together over 100 senior law enforcement and justice officials from both countries. We have seen concrete results from this group including full FBI and RCMP access to each other's databases for seamless co-operation on cross-border issues.

    As much as this progress serves us in our joint resolve to fight terrorism, we all know that terrorism is a global problem. That is why the departments and agencies of customs, immigration, transport, CSIS and the RCMP are constantly on alert for terrorists or other individuals who might pose a threat to Canadians.

  +-(1300)  

    The Government of Canada is dedicated to taking all the necessary steps to make sure we remain safe and secure. We are firmly committed to working closely with all our public safety partners at home and around the world. We do this on an ongoing basis to meet this fundamental obligation to Canadians.

    We continue to make investments to enhance Canada's ability to fight terrorism. We have already seen a practical example of how strong and effective our working relationships are with our allies on counterterrorism. We only need to look at the Ressam case. Close co-operation and information sharing between Canadian and American authorities prevented a potential disaster and produced a conviction in that case, as Mr. Ashcroft noted when he was here in June.

    The investigation also showed us that no system is immune. Canada, like many countries, has to continually adapt to deal with new and emerging terrorist threats and new methods of operation. The Ressam case showed the nature of the challenge that law enforcement authorities around the world must deal with: highly motivated, highly skilled individuals with access to technology, resources and support networks that allow them to change their identities and locations, use expertly forged documents and elude authorities.

    The important point is that we have learned a valuable lesson. Canada has taken strong action of its own in the aftermath of the case, doing its part to secure the border and to protect its citizens from threats to their safety.

    We have tightened up a range of procedures, from passport granting, to extradition requests, to more rigorous border inspections by customs and citizenship and immigration. Above all, as I said, we have and will continue to take steps to ensure information sharing is complete, timely, and as effective as possible.

    For example we have made investments in public safety with the addition of $1.5 billion to the public safety envelope. We have created new agencies, such as the Office of Critical Infrastructure Protection and Emergency Preparedness, where CSIS and the RCMP play key roles.

    We have introduced legislation to keep out or to remove serious criminals and others who threaten the public safety of Canadians. We have sponsored a bill, now before the House, to curb terrorist fundraising under the cloak of charitable giving. But this is just one small step.

    We have a solid partnership with the Americans. We have increased our investment in public safety and we have introduced new mechanisms and legislation. Canada has signed all 12 of the international conventions on combating terrorism. We have ratified 10 of them and we will be taking the measures needed to ratify the remaining two as quickly as possible.

    The world has changed and we need to do more. Canada has pledged its support to fight against terrorism, but the problem is global, and so must be the solution.

    Millions of people around the world paused last week, and last Friday over 100,000 were here on Parliament Hill, in grief and support for those whose lives were horribly cut short or changed forever. That tremendous outpouring of grief, support and resolve was a message to our American friends. It must also serve as a message to all of us here in this Chamber; a message that terrorism will not be tolerated, that we will do whatever we can to fight it right here and around the world, that we will protect our citizens and the values that define us as a people: democracy, freedom and justice.

  +-(1305)  

    The government will continue to work to protect those values we hold so dear. We owe it to our citizens and we owe it to our friends.

[Translation]

+-

    Mr. Paul Crête (Kamouraska—Rivière-du-Loup—Témiscouata—Les Basques, BQ): Mr. Speaker, over the last week, people across the country have been asking many questions.

    After the initial numbness, followed by pain, mourning and anger, we are now coming to grips with the idea that we need to do something to correct the situation. True, terrorism is an extreme and unacceptable reality, but it is also a terrible manifestation of frustration in our universe.

    Does the Canadian government intend to take a leading role in having an international investigation into the causes of the situation in question, so that we might not only prevent terrorist attacks, but also eradicate the problems that lead to them?

    Should not a global strategy, as Mr. Colin Powell stated, include an attempt to put an end to conflict in the Middle East as soon as possible in order to ensure that any action we take will get to the root of the problem rather than simply dealing with the terrible problems and consequences witnessed last week?

    Is the government ready to play its own role, to be true to itself, even more so than the Americans, whose rage we can understand, and to take a leadership role on the world stage to ensure that this fight will be waged on all fronts, instead of simply dealing with the tragic events that took place last week?

[English]

+-

    Hon. Lawrence MacAulay: Mr. Speaker, I appreciate the comments of my hon. colleague.

    In fact the whole world this day is struggling with how to attend to this massive problem. As the Prime Minister indicated quite clearly, we will be with the United States every step of the way. This country will make whatever changes need to be made to make sure that we continue to have the safest place in the world in which to live.

    What happened last Tuesday was devastating to all free society around the world. We did learn a lesson but we will also do what needs to be done to make sure that we continue to live in a country that is safe. We will also work with other countries to make sure that democracy continues to thrive in the world.

  +-(1310)  

+-

    Mr. Art Hanger (Calgary Northeast, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, I listened closely to the comments of the solicitor general.

    Terrorism, organized criminal activity and organized illegal activities have been on the front burner for this party for some years.

    It concerns me that up to the present time there has not been a real strong move to close the doors on many terrorists and their activities. Not only here but other countries too are facing the same dilemma.

    Our neighbours, the United Kingdom, have brought in an anti-terrorism act in response to this. Is the solicitor general prepared to consider a comprehensive anti-terrorism act as are our brothers and sisters in the United Kingdom as well as the United States?

+-

    Hon. Lawrence MacAulay: Mr. Speaker, I appreciate the question from my hon. colleague.

    Yes indeed all countries, including Canada, are struggling with how to deal with this issue. As has been stated before in the House, we will not make decisions immediately. We will make decisions to deal with the issue that is before the world today. It is a global problem. We will deal with it effectively and we will make the changes that are needed in order to make sure that we continue to live in a safe country. We cannot do it today. It has to be done with a lot of input to be sure that we do it in co-operation with America and Britain, as the hon. member has indicated, and all other countries around the world. This is a global issue. The Prime Minister has indicated that we will walk with them every step of the way and we will make the changes that need to be made.

+-

    The Deputy Speaker: Before debate is resumed, I want to remind members that they must be in their own seat to seek the floor. People are moving a little from time to time today, which is fine. It is wonderful to see so many members in the House participating in the debate with such interest. However, I caution members to be in the appropriate assigned seat when seeking the floor.

+-

    Mr. Richard Harris: Mr. Speaker, I rise on a point of order. I would like to inform you that the members of the Canadian Alliance will be splitting their time throughout the rest of this debate.

+-

    Mr. Brian Pallister (Portage—Lisgar, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, I rise on behalf of the people of my constituency of Portage--Lisgar to offer my profound condolences to the families and friends of those killed and injured in the horrifying terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001.

    The events of the last week have made an indelible impression. The harrowing images of death and destruction will forever scar our memory. But it is the heroic qualities, the compassion, the courage, the faith that emerged in response to this horrible cruelty that strengthened each and every one of us.

    Through the compassion of others not just in North America but also around the world we are reminded of our own humanity, of the trivial nature of the things that divide us and of the importance of what we share. We recognize that we are tied together. We recognize that we are bound to one another in the pursuit of freedom.

    As we, who are colleagues in the House of Commons offer our words today, I am reminded of the old adage, love is more than words; love is deeds. Our words, though sincere and well meaning, can do very little to undo the horrific events of last week. It will be our deeds which will reveal the genuine depth of our true compassion. It will be our actions which will demonstrate our unquestionable commitment to the prevention of future such tragedies and our very real love of freedom.

    These devastating events have awakened us in many ways. The anesthetic of complacency has worn off and a painful awareness grips all of us as we acknowledge the piercing sense of guilt that we all must feel. We ask ourselves the question: Could I have done more to prevent this? The unavoidable answer is yes.

    There can be no plausible deniability for Canada's leaders on the issue of whether we are complicit in terrorist operations. Her Majesty's Loyal Opposition has been urgently pointing this out for some time. The Ressam case, and far too many others, provide growing substantiation.

    In January 1999 a special Senate committee on security and intelligence stated very clearly that Canada is a venue of opportunity for terrorist groups. Several former senior government staff members have expressed concerns. For example, former CSIS chief of strategic planning David Harris referred to Canada as a “big jihad aircraft carrier for launching strikes against the United States”.

    The evidence is clear. Canadians are not interested in finger pointing. They know, as we do, that the clock cannot be turned back. Neither will they accept continued inaction. Canada must not be a bed and breakfast for terrorists.

    It is natural for policy makers to be defensive of the status quo but I was very pleased today to hear the comments of the Minister of Foreign Affairs that all security related issues should be on the table for discussion. I offer my encouragement to him and my encouragement to other government members who, along with my Canadian Alliance colleagues, are committed to the pursuit of necessary changes.

    No issue is of greater urgency than North American perimeter security. On the farm we do not strain the grain to find rats; we reinforce the walls to keep them out. Our walls must be reinforced. Our entry and exit security must be improved.

    By threatening the openness which we have enjoyed along the Canada-U.S. border, we jeopardize billions of dollars of trade and tens of thousands of Canadian jobs. Our very standard of living is at stake. Over 87% of our trade is done with the United States.

    Those who argue that the adoption of stricter perimeter entry policies will sacrifice Canadian sovereignty are either arguing for decreased security or increased unemployment. Neither of these is a laudable goal.

    In terms of immigration, those who argue speciously that the strengthening of screening approaches is anti-immigrant are profoundly mistaken. Our immigration policies must be generous but they can be rigorous as well and they must be. We can no longer have a policy of admit first and ask questions later.

    Canada has signed the United Nations international convention for the suppression of the financing of terrorism. We must uphold our commitment. Other signatories, such as Great Britain, have taken decisive action. They have adopted legislation which would make it a criminal offence to raise and provide funds in support of a terrorist organization. They have legislated such harsh penalties as banning from the country any group which participates in terrorist activities.

  +-(1315)  

    Many of my colleagues will be presenting proposals in the near future which, once adopted, will assure Canadians of our commitment to combat terrorism. Inaction on our part increases the speculation among our allies that our word will not be kept. We must show them that Canada is not on the sidelines in the battle against terrorism but where it belongs on the frontlines.

    We believe that in order to break down the machinery of terrorism we must strengthen our security and intelligence commitments. The Prime Minister has acknowledged that international terrorism is a growing threat, yet a Liberal led Senate committee found that operating funds for federal agencies with a security or intelligence role fell by approximately 30% in the 1990s.

    The struggle against terrorism is a global one. It is diplomatic. It is legal. It is political. It relies profoundly not on problem solving but on proactive strategies for prevention. What is required is information and intelligence gathering. Coalition building is essential. Canadians have a valuable contribution to make, but resources must be taken from lower priority areas and made available.

    In the near future we will be enunciating specific suggestions on how this goal can best be attained.

    Much more than its allies, Canada has cashed in its so-called peace dividend. Since the end of the cold war, Canada's diminished military capability has had an erosive effect on our world reputation.

    Our NATO allies rise to the challenge of battling global terrorism and our Prime Minister hesitates. The Prime Minister's indecision is understandable, given the rusty and overstretched Canadian military machine as it exists today. The restoration of our defence capabilities is an important component of restoring Canada's reputation in the world.

    When our house is in flames we want our neighbours to come running with a bucket today, not a card of condolence tomorrow. When the roles are reversed and our friends yearn for our assistance, we must not be hallmark allies offering pity but little else. Canada must seize the opportunity to assist in deeds not only as we do today in words. We cannot do everything, but we must not let what we cannot do prevent us from doing all that we can.

    Today we have an opportunity to grieve together and to be angry together, but more than that to commit our hearts and minds to action together. We in the House are bound together by the task that stands before us. We are bound together in our desire to see the world become a place where all children can grow up free and strong.

    Ours is not the first generation of Canadians to face the challenge of fighting for freedom. I will close by reciting the inscription on the soldier's tower at the University of Toronto:

    Take these men for your example. Like them, remember that prosperity can only be for the free, that freedom is the sure possession of those alone who have the courage to defend it.

  +-(1320)  

+-

    Mr. Brent St. Denis (Algoma—Manitoulin, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I listened carefully to my colleague's comments. He and I, along with all members in this place, share a deep, common sorrow for what happened in the U.S. and in the world last week. The legacy of those hours and ensuing days will be felt throughout time to come. The best that we can accomplish from this is to learn the lessons handed to us quite strongly by those who are the enemy of democracy and freedom.

    I would personally like to resist the temptation, and I believe our Prime Minister has been very clear in saying so, to turn this into a simple good versus evil, a simple difference of religious points of view. That is very wrong.

    What we are talking about is an approach to society that wants to destroy. Be that a terrorist gang, a biker gang or a drug cartel, there are elements in society in all corners of the world that wish to destroy that which we so strongly value and cherish.

    My good friend just spoke about Canada's borders and the importance of making sure that those who enter this country enter with good intention. Ambassador Cellucci from the U.S. made comments, and I am not sure he heard them, about working with the U.S. on continental security with a view to making transit between Canada and the U.S. even easier.

    Has he heard those comments and if so, does he have anything to say?

+-

    Mr. Brian Pallister: Yes, I did, Mr. Speaker. The reality of our nation is that our inseparable links, especially on the issues of trade, are a tremendous strength to us. However we face an obligation in terms of responding properly as a nation to the threats posed to security in the United States. Many Canadian families were directly impacted by the horrible actions of last week, but we have an obligation to all people of the world in terms of standing up against terrorism. It was never more apparent than it is now.

    The fact is that perimeter security, because of the shared continent we inhabit with the United States, is an essential issue that we must address proactively. Our failure to do so should be obvious to all hon. members.

    Our failure to strongly endorse actions that would protect every person on the North American continent from the potential actions of terrorists would be to put at risk the strong trade and protectionist relationships between Canada and the United States.

    We have seen as a consequence of last week's actions the impact Canadians and Americans felt directly. Those who have travelled here from other points around the world have seen the delays, the costs to our small business community and the costs to the significant number of Canadians who count on employment as a result of trade.

    The direct impact of our unwillingness to address the challenges of perimeter security is that the border between Canada and the United States becomes a perimeter which the United States must concern itself with protecting.

    Any action which necessitates further delays and reductions in the efficiency of the markets which function in our two countries has a profound impact in a negative way on Canadians. The challenges are clear.

    There are those who argue that there is a sovereignty question and that we should somehow take pride in the fact that we have become a home for far too many terrorists and a land that is known in too many quarters of the world as a place that welcomes and is hospitable to those who might do damage to others. That is a very serious charge that we must address. We have to address that proactively in the House through meaningful measures and not through lip service. That is our challenge in the weeks ahead.

  +-(1325)  

+-

    Mr. Kevin Sorenson (Crowfoot, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, I rise today to take part in the debate expressing heartfelt condolences to the families of the victims of the attack on America and to the American people. I do so with a heavy heart.

    My thoughts and prayers, as well as the prayers of all Canadians, have been and will continue to be with the many American and Canadian families who are grieving the loss of loved ones. The enormity of this tragedy is incomprehensible to most adults.

    One can therefore only imagine the impact of these horrific events on children who suffered the loss of a mother, father, aunt, uncle, brother or sister. Our own children, only remotely affected by the evil death and devastation, are reeling from the mere thought, let alone the reality, of losing those they loved so dearly and depended on.

    I for one have hugged my children just a little more fiercely and protectively in the last few days. Prior to my departure yesterday, my nine year old daughter Kristen and seven year old son Ryan expressed reservations about daddy flying to Ottawa. How can we assure our children, who cannot comprehend such world complexities and tragedies, that such tragedies will not befall us? The answer is that we cannot.

    However we can assure them that as parliamentarians we will do everything within our power to minimize the chances of such atrocities happening in Canada and from reoccurring in the United States. I therefore join with all members of the House in urging and supporting the government to maintain the heightened levels and vigilance enacted in Canada following the attack on America. We cannot afford to do otherwise. Canada cannot remain complacent.

    It is true that Canada is not a major target for terrorist attacks. We cannot, however, presume to be immune from terrorism. It has been well documented that we are a venue opportunity for terrorist groups, a place where they may raise funds, purchase arms and conduct their activities and support their organizations in their terrorist activities.

    Most major international organizations have a presence in Canada. The 1998 CSIS report indicated that there were as many as 50 organized terrorist groups active in Canada, mainly using our country as a banking centre.

    The report indicated that liberal immigration laws, relatively open borders, freedom of movement, advanced communications systems and the proximity to the United States all made Canada inviting for terrorists. Our geographic location makes us a favourite conduit for terrorists wishing to enter the United States.

    Over one-third of all terrorist attacks worldwide are against the United States. It is therefore absolutely imperative that we, for the sake of our best friends and closest neighbour, ensure that we effectively plug that conduit. We must begin by ensuring that our security and intelligence service, our front and first line of defence against terrorism, is adequately funded.

    I am referring to the mandate of CSIS to collect and analyze all information and to report and advise our government on threats to the security of our nation. I am also referring to the RCMP that has the responsibility to take direct action to counter any terrorist threat.

    The operating budgets for these agencies fell from $464 million in fiscal year 1989-90 to $333 million in 1997-98, or a $131 million reduction. Funding for CSIS fell from $179.4 million in 1991 to $167 million in 1997-98. The Canadian public wants to know whether the government is committed to the safety and security of its citizens.

    The government's restraint program significantly affects the services resource levels. Between 1992 and 1998 personnel was reduced by 760 people, or a slash of 28%.

  +-(1330)  

    The 1996 CSIS report stated that it had more files than ever before but fewer resources to do the job. The CSIS 2000 public report said:

    Up to now, CSIS has been able to risk-manage the challenges. However, the terrorist events of late 1999 underscored the continuing requirement to review efficiency within the context of the existing threat environment. More than ever, the Service must rely on risk management, concentrating resources selectively and precisely on the major issues, while assessing new and emerging issues.

    The same report goes on to state:

    Terrorism in the years ahead is expected to become more violent, indiscriminate, and unpredictable than in recent years. The use of advanced explosive materials, in combination with highly sophisticated timers and detonators, will produce increasingly higher numbers of casualties. There will likely be terrorist attacks whose sole aim would be to incite terror itself. A hardening attitude and a willingness on the part of certain terrorist organizations to directly support terrorist operations in North America reinforce the belief that Canadians, now more than ever, are potential victims and Canada a potential venue for terrorist attacks.

    In the last couple of years CSIS has endured a number of setbacks or scandals. In November 1999, a top secret document was stolen from an analyst's van. On the heels of that incident, another agent left a computer diskette, brimming with highly confidential and classified information, in a busy Toronto phone booth. The worst security lapse occurred when CSIS failed to uncover two alleged terrorists living in Montreal. Algerian born Ahmed Ressam, at the centre of a terrorist organization, was operating out of a small apartment just hours away from Ottawa. According to the United States government, he was not the only suspected terrorist residing in Montreal, he had other brothers in the cause. Apparently on the eve of our millennial celebration, the pair, allegedly on a lethal mission for the Osama bin Laden group, were to slip from British Columbia down into Washington state where they had the ingredients for a bomb so powerful that it could have obliterated a large building. Fortunately, a United States custom agent stopped Ressam as he was attempting to cross the border on December 14, 1999.

    Apparently CSIS had no role in Ressam's arrest despite the fact that the alleged terrorist had been in Canada since 1994. He had fraudulently obtained a Canadian passport and was using it to freely move back and forth between Europe and even up into Afghanistan and to Canada.

    Ressam's failure to appear at immigration hearings and even his arrest for robbery apparently did not set off enough warning bells with CSIS or immigration.

    The Los Angeles judge presiding over Mr. Ressam's trial has expressed outrage at Canada's handling of this case. No one really knows how Ressam evaded CSIS. However I will give our security intelligence service the benefit of the doubt assuming insufficient resources played a significant role. I would suggest that clearly it is time to reverse the government's restraint program that has so adversely affected CSIS and the RCMP and therefore undermined the security of this nation and the safety of its citizens.

    It is time to reverse the RCMP's loss of 2,200 positions and close to $175 million in funds since 1994.

    Due to time restraints today I cannot list the many unanswered questions regarding the effectiveness and abilities of security or intelligence services. However in the coming days I will, as the solicitor general critic for the official opposition, ask questions. As one of my constituents writes to me:

    We owe our freedom and way of life to one thing only, the goodwill and protection afforded us by our neighbours to the south. Without them, we would be under the control of whomever had the might to take for themselves the rich resources of this country, for we surely do not have the strength to protect what is ours in this present day. Terrorism declared war upon our good neighbour on September 11, and so declared war upon us. This then is a time when we should support, in every manner possible, the United States.

    We must ensure our first line of defence against terrorism is properly equipped, staffed and funded to ensure that Canadians are not potential victims and Canada a potential venue for terrorist attacks.

  +-(1335)  

    We must be vigilant.

+-

    Mr. Peter MacKay (Pictou—Antigonish—Guysborough, PC): Mr. Speaker, I commend my colleague and share many of the comments, questions and concerns that he has expressed in his learned remarks.

    Let me take this opportunity, on behalf of myself and the people of Pictou--Antigonish--Guysborough, to similarly send our condolences to the families and victims, those who have been crushed both emotionally and physically by this tragedy, in the United States of America. Our neighbours, closest allies and friends need our unconditional support at this time.

    I also offer brief words of congratulations and support to the firefighters, police and medical emergency personnel who, without thought for their own safety, have put themselves in harm's way. While many of the people who were involved in this tragedy were running out of the Pentagon and out of the World Trade Center, these emergency workers were running in. They continue to do their work, God's work, while trying to preserve life in the face of very tragic circumstances.

    As the hon. member for Crowfoot has expressed in his words, I am sure he would share the sentiment of members of the Progressive Conservative Democratic Representative Coalition that we need to put greater resources into the areas of internal security and defence. He has quoted some statistics but we know our neighbour to the south has made a very strong commitment of $40 billion from the congress to the president to pursue these ideals in the United States.

    We need to do more than simply express words now. As the hon. member has said, we need to put concrete resources behind these necessary departments. Would the hon. member care to share his thoughts on this issue?

+-

    Mr. Kevin Sorenson: Mr. Speaker, I thank my hon. colleague for his question as well as the best wishes offered by himself and his constituency.

    What we have seen happen and the words that we bring forward are not new. No one wishes that they need stand in parliament or any place and offer condolences to the American people for what has happened. Everyone wishes that this event would have never happened. However the Canadian public expects the government's number one priority is for the security and safety of its citizens.

    When we talk about cutbacks in the many different areas of funding, budgets and fiscal restraints, never has our party or any other party suggested that cutbacks should occur in areas that would negatively impact on the security of our nation and its citizens.

    However, in answer to the question, CSIS, our Canadian Security Intelligence Service, has made it abundantly clear in its reports that we are risk managing. These words, which jump out of the reports, are being said by the individuals responsible for the security of our nation. When they conclude that we are trying to risk manage the files, issues and people we are performing intelligence on, it is of huge concern to the House.

    As has already been mentioned, reports have shown that operating budgets have fallen from $464 million to $333 million. CSIS states in its reports that there are now more files and more cases but $131 million less with which to operate.

    Our RCMP state that the responsibility of CSIS is to gather information and intelligence and bring it to parliament and the government so that the RCMP will be able to reach out and provide safety and security to our nation. We have seen 2,200 positions cut in the RCMP because of lack of resources and funding. We have seen $175 million cut.

    As we say back in Crowfoot, we need to put our money where our mouth is. We need to show our commitment by taking action on these cutback measures and showing our commitment to providing security to our citizens again.

  +-(1340)  

+-

    Hon. David Collenette (Minister of Transport, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I would like to inform the House that I will be splitting my time with one of my colleagues.

    This has been a very challenging week for all of us in government and Canadians, as well as others around the world. I do believe that the Canadian transportation sector responded vigorously and in time to deal with this most unprecedented of crises. In addition, the communities that received airline passengers performed a remarkable feat, one that went beyond imagination. Transport Canada, Nav Canada, our airports and all those people involved in transportation management and security did an outstanding job. We took this very decisive action without hesitation.

    I should first say that I was addressing a conference of 2,000 executives of the worlds' Eleventh Airports Council International World Assembly, exhibition and conference in Montreal when this happened, including many of the chief executive officers of airports in the United States, who were absolutely shocked at what went on. As soon as we understood the severity of the situation, we closed Canadian airspace within the hour. In fact, this was a case of where the action of the government preceded the official communiqué. For those people in the media and others, I apologize, but the action had to be taken immediately and was issued by phone and by fax. The official communiqué got out some considerable time afterward.

    The number of flights that were diverted were more than 200. We estimate that about 33,000 passengers were diverted and the majority of those passengers were diverted to east coast airports because as soon as it happened we had to get them out of the sky very quickly. That is why a disproportionate number of planes landed at Gander, Stephenville, Goose Bay, St. John's, Halifax and Moncton. Everyone in the country performed remarkably. Planes landed at Whitehorse, Yellowknife, Hamilton, Toronto and Winnipeg. Vancouver took 33 planes. Planes also landed at Thunder Bay, Dorval, Mirabel, Edmonton and Calgary. However the lion's share of the effort was taken on by the people of Atlantic Canada and they were remarkable in their efforts. They should be congratulated.

    Members have to understand how difficult it was on the ground. As my colleagues know, these are airports, especially in the smaller communities of Atlantic Canada, that are not used to taking this number of planes. In Halifax there were 40 planes. Halifax is an international airport but it does not have 40 wide bodied jets on the ground at any one time. The taxiways were jammed. Gander had 38 planes, Stephenville had, I believe, 8, St. John's had 25 planes, Moncton had 10 and Goose Bay had 5. Those communities were absolutely overwhelmed, not just on the technical side but also in looking after passengers, but they performed a remarkable feat.

    We wanted to get the planes back into the sky as soon as possible. We worked in conjunction with the FAA in the United States. Once we came to the determination that we could open up Canadian air space we opened it before U.S. air space was opened because we wanted to get Canadians back into the skies. We wanted to get those planes that had been diverted to Canada back to where they were going, largely to the United States but some to Mexico.

    We had a lot of logistical problems in doing that. There was overcrowding on the runways. Security, immigration and customs matters, which my colleagues will be talking about later in the debate, and technical matters were also problems. When everything was in order, guess what? The weather took a big hit in Newfoundland as it always does, but the people of Newfoundland know what the weather can do, and it delayed things. However passengers were remarkably cool. We had reports of people sitting on planes for 8 to 10 hours. We could not off load those planes until those people were properly processed. We had to ensure the security of Canadians was paramount in the activities of that particular exercise.

[Translation]

  +-(1345)  

    I would like to speak briefly about flight safety, because the Government of Canada has been taking all necessary steps to maintain and improve the safety of our aviation system.

    We are working with all other countries and international organizations in order to identify and eliminate the risks that could threaten Canadians.

    When it comes to flight safety, Canada's reputation is quite enviable. We are committed to maintaining the highest level of safety. When the transportation system's safety is threatened, we react quickly and effectively.

[English]

    We did react very quickly on new measures. Before we agreed to put one plane back in the sky, we brought in very strict measures. We worked with the airport community, the airlines, the unions and everybody concerned to ensure that there would be no mistake and that Canadians who then were boarding the aircraft had a greater degree of security.

    It was not just those passengers going onto planes from inside security. The events that happened last week caused us to question all aspects of aviation security, not just affecting passengers and the boarding of aircraft, but how they are serviced, who they are serviced by, who has access to the tarmac, who has access to the terminal buildings and who has access to identification of airline workers. All this had to be looked at very quickly, and new measures were introduced.

    We will not table a list of all the security measures on the floor of the House of Commons because by their very nature security measures are expected to be held very close at hand. We do not want to tip our hand to any terrorist who may be planning another assault, a second wave.

    It is quite obvious that people have to get to the airports earlier. It is quite obvious that they will be subject to greater screening, both on their person and their effects. Any object they may have that could be loosely construed as being dangerous will have to be taken away.

    I think people understand that and are prepared for it. In this era of electronic gadgetry, every electronic device that we take on a plane, whether it is a personal computer, or a BlackBerry, or anything that emits a signal or is of a technical nature, we have to be assured that particular device does not have any nefarious objective in the hands of the passenger.

    We have enhanced security. I will be announcing further measures later today with respect to security. This is an ongoing file.

    Security was under review before September 11. The constant testing of security measures is extremely rigorous and standards are then changed and the bar is raised higher and has been raised higher, but because of the terrible events of last week we are not taking any further chances and new measures will come forward.

    Anything my colleagues put forward in debate today will be considered. We have to work together as a group of legislators with one mind and one purpose, and that is to protect the people we represent. The Government of Canada does not have a monopoly on all good ideas with respect to government policies in any field, but certainly in the case of security.

    The good thing is that other modes of transport functioned quite well, especially the rail system. A lot of that has to do with the way goods are cleared. My colleague, the Minister of National Revenue, will talk about that. However,the rail system was virtually unscathed.

    We had a lot of problems with clearance at the border which he will touch on. However, we were able to be flexible within federal law to allow truckers to get beyond the borders, and the relaxation of rest periods. We did this in concert with all provincial governments, so we could get the goods to and from their destination.

    Going back to the airlines. the recovery of airline operations has been rather rapid. I was on the phone this weekend with the chief executive officers of the Canadian carriers and also some of the international carriers. Air Canada was operating at 80% to 90% plus 100% on the international front. Canada 3000 was operating 100% domestically, but with some international delays of a couple of days. WestJet was operating at 100% on domestic flights.

    The airline companies are back in the field. Yes, there have been some reductions. Air Canada issued a release this morning reducing capacity, especially transborder, which we think will be most affected in the short run.

    People who were planning to go south this winter, to Florida, Hawaii, Europe, should not let terrorists change their plans. Let us not be cowed by these people. If Canadians want a holiday, need a holiday and deserve a holiday, then we will ensure that the air system is safe enough to travel so that their plans can be kept as made.

  +-(1350)  

    I would encourage people to go back and travel and take solace in the fact that everyone is watching. All government agencies are taking every precaution necessary to ensure safety.

    Obviously there are implications for the viability of the airline industry in particular with what has happened. We think much of this will be borne in the United States, but there will be some challenges in Canada that we will discuss in the days and weeks ahead.

    Let us get the facts straight and let us get them right so we can make a proper judgment before we deal with any of the other issues that will arise in the coming weeks.

+-

    Mr. Peter Stoffer (Sackville—Musquodoboit Valley—Eastern Shore, NDP): Mr. Speaker, I wish to thank the hon. Minister of Transport for his acknowledgement of the yeomen's work done by airline staff and the authorities throughout the country.

    As a former airline employee for 18 years, having served nine years in the Yukon and nine years at the Halifax airport, I know exactly what those people went through during those long hours. The patience and understanding of all authorities, the generosity of all communities and especially the understanding of the passengers who sat on airplanes for 12 hours made their jobs that much more effective and easier.

    As the hon. member knows, security for airports is contracted out by the major carriers. I remember trying to assist some Halifax security airport workers on the screening process during their contract deliberations with Air Canada a few years ago. I could not help but notice that Air Canada and others are now writing the minister asking that the federal government take 100% control of airport security and screening processes throughout the country.

    I know it is a little premature to ask if he will do this, but will the minister at least take it under advisement and review the screening contracts for the entire country so that it falls under a national screening process devised and operated by the federal government?

  +-(1355)  

+-

    Hon. David Collenette: Mr. Speaker, the screening process operates that way. Transport Canada has the authority to oversee safety on every aspect of our aviation industry. I suppose there could be a debate in the House as to whether or not it is better to return that function from an operational point of view to the public service versus a private company. That is a debate we should have.

    However that is not our focus right now because Transport Canada oversees the operations of the security companies and has been introducing tougher evaluation over the last year. It certainly has been much more rigorous in the last week in working with the companies that perform the security for the airlines. After all, the airlines have taken responsibility.

    I would not want the hon. member to inadvertently mislead the House that because of the changes in government policy over the last few years that somehow there has been no control or no unity of purpose on airport screening. We have been very vigilant and very tough.

    The question is how we proceed from now on. The focus should be on specific ways to improve and enhance security rather than focus on who actually does the job under what auspices in a contractual sense.

+-

    Mr. James Moore (Port Moody—Coquitlam—Port Coquitlam, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, I appreciate the comments of the Minister of Transport on the subject. I wish he had not split his time and had more to offer in terms of a timeline as to when he may be tabling some broader recommendations on the subject.

    We all have anecdotal examples of airport security. I want to offer mine for the minister's consumption.

    When one goes through an airport security check, one is supposed to be asked to turn on any cellphone, laptop computer or palm pilot. Clearly one is not supposed to bring knives on a plane.

    Since I was elected as a member of parliament in this place last November, I have travelled to and from my constituency almost every single week. Up until yesterday when I travelled here I was never asked to turn on my cellphone, laptop or palm pilot. On 25 or 30 flights over the past year I have carried a pocket knife onto the airplane every single flight. I use it to open mail.

    In the past 10 days, I and my legislative assistant brought pocket knives on board and my executive assistant brought a pair of scissors on board. That compiled with the question about electronics has clearly violated safety standards which the minister is supposed to be enforcing in airports.

    The transport minister's website only mentions that the current safety measures--

+-

    The Deputy Speaker: I regret to interrupt the hon. member but the minister has no more than a minute to respond briefly before we proceed to member's statements.

+-

    Hon. David Collenette: Mr. Speaker, we can have further discussion on this. The members of the transport committee might want to have me there at some point to speak in detail.

    I appreciate my colleague's point that we do not really have time to get into great detail. However, we are looking at measures on a daily basis and we will make changes when we believe that they should be introduced.

    With respect to some of the points before, what he is essentially saying is, why did we not do this before? What happened last week changed the whole nature of air travel, the kind of threat and the fact that commercial airliners were in effect used as missiles on civilian structures. That requires much more concerted and deliberate measures.


+-STATEMENTS BY MEMBERS

[S. O. 31]

*   *   *

[English]

+-Terrorism

+-

    Mr. Mac Harb (Ottawa Centre, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, on behalf of my constituents, I offer my deepest sympathies to the families and friends of the victims and our heartfelt support for the American people.

    We are all horrified that a small band of well organized and well financed terrorists were able to take so many innocent lives.

    While we feel outrage and anger, we must ensure that the world responds to this crisis in a precise and timely fashion. This is not a war between nation states. It is not a war of religion. In fact all religions of the world have condemned this senseless act.

    It is a matter of hunting those responsible and bringing to justice all those who participated in this despicable and horrific crime against humanity.

    In the spirit of the hundred of thousands of people who gathered on Parliament Hill last week, I call on all Canadians to cling onto the values that built our country, to love and respect our neighbours, to embrace our many cultures and to reaffirm our strong, everlasting commitment to building a better future for our children.

*   *   *

  +-(1400)  

+-Terrorism

+-

    Mr. David Anderson (Cypress Hills—Grasslands, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, on behalf of the constituents of Cypress Hills--Grasslands, I rise to express my sympathy for the victims and families affected by last Tuesday's tragedy. This horrendous act of terrorism not only destroyed many lives, it also permanently scarred the world for all of us.

    These evil acts come from the heart, from hatred and ambition, emotions with which we are all familiar. These events forced us to look at our own hearts.

    Billy Graham spoke last week of our desperate need for spiritual renewal. Are we willing to let God heal our land?

    We pray for the victims and their families and we continue to pray that God will keep our land glorious and free. We need great wisdom as we work to ensure an act such as this will never happen again.

    This is an appropriate time for parliamentarians to examine ourselves and for each of us to ask, what is my responsibility and what is my role in the renewal of our country?

*   *   *

+-Terrorism

+-

    Mr. David Pratt (Nepean—Carleton, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, with the images of live television seared forever in our memories, last Tuesday we witnessed one of the most horrific acts against a civilian population in the history of humankind.

    The Prime Minister expressed very well our collective horror and revulsion in condemning these barbaric attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon.

    With over 40 nationalities listed in the ranks of the dead and missing, this was truly an attack upon the civilized world. To President Bush and the people in government of the United States, we extend our profound and deepest sympathies. To the families and relatives of those who have been killed or are listed as missing, our thoughts and prayers are with them as they seek God's wisdom in trying to understand and cope with their loss.

    Canada will stand together with the United States to vanquish terrorism. Together with our allies we must summon the resources and the resolve to do what is necessary to rid the world of this unspeakable evil.

*   *   *

+-Terrorism

+-

    Mr. John Godfrey (Don Valley West, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, in the aftermath of the tragedy in the United States on September 11, we are reminded of the crucial role of parliament and government in leading the country through troubled times.

    What do people in Canada and around the world want right now? What do they expect? They want security.

    A prime function of government is to ensure our safety and security in our local community, our national community and our international community. This is the true human security agenda, but Canadians also expect our governments to act prudently, intelligently and wisely.

    We must not let evil triumph because we allowed ourselves to be provoked in ways which will ultimately destroy our security, not enhance it.

*   *   *

+-Terrorism

+-

    Mr. Walt Lastewka (St. Catharines, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I rise in the House today to offer, on behalf of all the citizens of the Niagara region, our deepest sympathies to our American neighbours following the horrific events of Tuesday, September 11, 2001.

    As our region is in such close proximity to the border with the United States, we have many friends who reside just across the border and the Niagara region has rallied to show our support and compassion.

    The regional emergency control group was convened and placed on alert status early on Tuesday as the events in New York and Washington began to unfold. This group has been ready to act and assist with whatever resources required if and when asked.

    Five Niagara critical Incident staff members are assisting with family victim counselling in Washington. The Regional Municipality of Niagara has co-ordinated with the Niagara Credit Union to set up a fund for the victims of this tragedy and their families. Radio stations and many organizations have raised thousands of dollars.

    The thoughts and prayers of all citizens of the Niagara region are with the American people today as they face the challenges of rebuilding their lives after this most unspeakable event which has forever changed the lives of all of us.

*   *   *

+-Canadian Muslims

+-

    Mr. Rahim Jaffer (Edmonton—Strathcona, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, as the only Muslim elected to parliament in Canada, it gives me great sadness not only to have witnessed what happened in the U.S. but the backlash against the Islamic community over the last week.

    Most Canadians realize the value of living in a multicultural society and the strength the country has because of its diversity. I fear that due to a perverse interpretation of Islam by an extreme few a whole community is at risk of being painted with the same brush.

    Canadian Muslims have come far and wide to make Canada their home because they share the values of peace, freedom and democracy. These values are cherished and this country loved due to the opportunity it has given all Canadians, all races and creeds. Most are willing to fight and die for Canada.

    Now is the time for all Canadians to link arms together regardless of origin, race or religion, to fight the terrorist threat and not to turn on each other. We must remember that we are no better than the faceless cowards who committed these acts in the U.S. if we turn on our own communities at home with violence or threatening acts.

    I am proud to be a Canadian and equally proud to be a member of the Islamic community, a group that has contributed so much to this great nation.

*   *   *

  +-(1405)  

[Translation]

+-Terrorism

+-

    Mr. Robert Bertrand (Pontiac—Gatineau—Labelle, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, September 11, 2001, will remain forever engraved in the heart of humanity. It is difficult even now to put the horror of this day into words.

    Such a deed defies all human understanding. We will never be able to explain what drove individuals to take such a cowardly action. We sympathize with the horror and anguish being felt by our American neighbours.

    They are not alone in this ordeal. The thousands of victims of this tragedy include a number of Canadians. An outpouring of sympathy and support was a clear sign of the indignation and grief felt by all Canadians.

    Last Friday, more than one hundred thousand of us gathered on Parliament Hill to express our compassion and our friendship towards the American people. This solidarity between our two nations will help us to join forces in meeting the threat of terrorism to our democracies.

*   *   *

+-Terrorism

+-

    Ms. Francine Lalonde (Mercier, BQ): Mr. Speaker, on September 11, my youngest son was to go to work at the World Trade Center. It took me nearly an hour to find out that he was safe and sound.

    I do not need to tell members that I understand the suffering of the Americans and of all those who mourn a death, or perhaps worse yet, a disappearance.

    I do know I can say that all of Quebec and Canada join me, us, in offering our sympathy to all these people.

    However, in the face of an abomination such as the events in New York and Washington, although it is important to discover the culprits and to bring them to justice and to react, it is all the more important to find ways of preventing the recurrence of another such tragedy.

    This determination, our determination, must be unshakeable. Our reaction in giving effect to it must be devoid of all thoughts of vengeance. Otherwise, we will only reap more hatred, and I--

+-

    The Speaker: The hon. member for Lac-Saint-Louis.

*   *   *

+-Terrorism

+-

    Mr. Clifford Lincoln (Lac-Saint-Louis, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, violence is always profoundly unjust, because it is inevitably the innocent who pay the price, an incalculable price. How do we measure the value and nobility of a single human life?

[English]

    Today we pause, above all, to remember the thousands of innocent human beings who paid the terrible price of hate and violence with their own lives. Mothers and fathers, husbands and wives, sisters and brothers, young and old, all they sought was to go about their daily lives and return to their loved ones once their day was done.

    In mourning them we say a special prayer for all the loved ones who will never see them again and whose lives will be changed forever. May they be given the strength and fortitude to find peace and acceptance in the difficult days and years ahead. God bless them all.

*   *   *

+-Terrorism

+-

    Mr. Myron Thompson (Wild Rose, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, as many members know, I was born and raised in the United States. Many of my family members are still there. I have grand kids two and a half hours from New York and my son is presently on high alert with the American army in Seattle. The events of last week have cut me deeply.

    In discussions with my brother, a veteran of the United States army, he recounted his story of being caught in a foxhole during World War II. He was under fire in a pool of water that turned to ice very slowly and as the hours passed he had no hope until over the hill came Canadian troops who saved his life for which he will be forever eternally grateful.

    In this time of tragedy, now more so than ever, we again need the strong arms of this type of brotherhood. The Canadian military reputation throughout history may have been small in number but enormous in courage and tenacity. We cannot waiver or procrastinate this unity. It is time for action, not contemplation. If ever there was a time for Canadians to strike a blow for freedom, that time is now.

*   *   *

  +-(1410)  

+-Terrorism

+-

    Hon. Susan Whelan (Essex, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, on behalf of the residents of Essex county and the city of Windsor, who share not only an international border but a way of life with our neighbour the United States, I would like to express our condolences and offer our prayers to the families, friends and co-workers of the innocent victims of the tragic events in the United States on September 11.

    To the firefighters, police officers, medical and emergency personnel who served their communities and faced perilous danger each day, we offer our prayers for continued strength and courage. To those rescuers who have lost their lives, to their families, friends and co-workers, we offer our condolences and prayers.

    America, a beacon of freedom and hope to the world, was built by the courage and determination of all those who sought democracy and opportunity on her shores. Canadians share those values and are prepared to stand side by side with our friends to defend our way of life. We share their sorrow at this horrific tragedy and our thoughts and prayers go out to the families, friends and co-workers of the victims and the survivors. Everything is different now.

*   *   *

+-Terrorism

+-

    Mr. Bill Blaikie (Winnipeg—Transcona, NDP): Mr. Speaker, as we seek to comprehend the enormity of what has happened in recent days and what the Canadian response should be, I urge all of us with political responsibilities to pray for the gift of discernment, for the power to discern the difference between righteousness and self-righteousness, between humility and hubris, between vengeance and justice, between fundamental values and ideological preferences, between long term effective solutions and short term feel good solutions, between actions that make the world a safer place and actions that pour fuel on an already blazing fire and, finally, between the faith of the false prophets who criticize only others and the truly prophetic who call on us to reflect on our own sins as well as those of others.

    May God grant us all the power to make these distinctions.

*   *   *

[Translation]

+-Terrorism

+-

    Ms. Monique Guay (Laurentides, BQ): Mr. Speaker, last week's carnage on American soil represents an unacceptable attack on humankind and on life itself.

    Our pain and our suffering are profound, but they do not blind us to our primary purpose, which is to build a better, fairer and more humane world.

    We will not allow a group of terrorists to determine our future. It is the duty of elected representatives to build a world of peace, and we will continue to work towards that end.

    The perpetrators of these crimes must be hunted down and brought before the courts, but we must never confuse these criminals with certain communities which have already suffered too much.

    On behalf of all Quebecers, I say to the families who have been affected and to the American people that their pain is ours. We pay tribute to the courage of those who put their own lives on the line and did everything they could to help their felllow citizens.

    May all these acts of fraternity ease our sorrow and open our hearts to generosity, tolerance and life.

*   *   *

+-Terrorism

+-

    Mr. Jacques Saada (Brossard—La Prairie, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, after the horrors of last Tuesday, I wish to tell the victims' families on behalf of all of the people of Brossard--La Prairie that we share their sorrow.

    If the terrorists have lost sight of the fact that the word “islam” comes from the word “salam”, which means peace, we must not forget it. There is too frequently confusion between Islam, a religion of peace, and Islamic fundamentalism, a political dogma to which the Muslims themselves are the first to fall victim, moreover.

    We have only to think of the assassination of former Egyptian President and Nobel peace prize winner Anwar Sadat.

    Let us remember that Islamic fundamentalists are murdering tens of thousands of other Muslims in Algeria.

    The effects of this malaise on the community are being felt not only by Muslims but by all Canadians, regardless of religion.

    The arson attack on the Hamilton Hindu Temple and the threats against schoolchildren are examples of this.

    I wish to speak out strongly against these acts of intolerance. Each of these acts, each rift between us, constitutes a victory for terrorism. Let us not be our own enemies.

    All of my constituents prefer to call upon the best Canadians have to offer: tolerance and mutual respect.

*   *   *

+-Terrorism

+-

    Right Hon. Joe Clark (Calgary Centre, PC/DR): Mr. Speaker, last Tuesday's tragic events profoundly touched the hearts of people around the world. All our lives have been turned upside down.

    We wish to express our most sincere condolences and our deepest sorrow to the relatives and friends of the victims, in the United States and in Canada.

  +-(1415)  

[English]

    The courage and determination of the Canadian and American people during this tragedy sends a very strong message, that while terrorists can destroy lives and buildings they cannot destroy democracy or our freedom.

    Canada is the United States' closest neighbour and ally. We welcomed diverted planes into our airports. Canadians opened their own hearts and homes to those stranded by this cruel and brutal attack.

    Now is the time for us to stand solidly with the people of the United States. Parliamentarians should follow the example of the Canadian people who without any hesitation came to the aid of their American neighbours. We are with them fully in our determination to eliminate the scourge of terrorism from the world.

    On behalf of the Progressive Conservative Democratic Representative coalition in parliament, I extend our heartfelt condolences to all who have lost families and friends in this brutal tragedy.

*   *   *

+-Terrorism

+-

    Mr. Geoff Regan (Halifax West, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, what happened last week in New York was an unspeakable act of cowardice and evil. It is understandable and natural that we all feel grief and anger over Tuesday's assaults on our neighbours to the south. These were vicious attacks on innocent people.

    However let us not give into the temptation of blaming entire groups for the actions of a select few. Let us reserve our wrath for the guilty. To direct our anger at innocent people, particularly based on their religion or ethnicity, would be the worst possible response.

    Let us not allow terrorism to win. Let us not give in to fear and hate. Let us remember the openness that makes us vulnerable is also the freedom that makes us great. There will be steps that we must take to increase our security, but we must also be extremely cautious so as to preserve our liberty.


+-ORAL QUESTION PERIOD

[Oral Questions]

*   *   *

[English]

+-Terrorism

+-

    Mr. Stockwell Day (Leader of the Opposition, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, the top priority for any government is the safety and security of its citizens. In 1997 the government's intelligence working group reviewed the possibility of bringing in comprehensive anti-terrorism legislation such as exists in the United States and in the United Kingdom. However the government said at that time that the need for such a scheme could not be established.

    Will the Prime Minister tell Canadians today whether he now believes that the need for comprehensive anti-terrorism legislation in Canada has now indeed been established?

+-

    Right Hon. Jean Chrétien (Prime Minister, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, as I said previously, this is a problem that is faced by all nations of the world. We all have to work together to make sure that terrorism is fought everywhere in the world, including Canada. We will do all that is needed to make sure that this disease will not spread in Canada.

    As I said this morning, there are some pieces of legislation already before the House of Commons. Members of committees will have occasion to look at legislation and make recommendations. We will listen to the members of parliament to see what is needed.

    We have to do that in such a way that we will not destroy the values that are so dear to the Canadian people.

[Translation]

+-

    Mr. Stockwell Day (Okanagan--Coquihalla, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, the anti-terrorist legislation in England and in the United States allow for the identification and expulsion of certain terrorist groups. That is not the case in Canada.

    In fact, the solicitor general said in this House on February 22, and I quote: “in this country CSIS does not indicate who it is watching and who it is not watching”.

    Could the Prime Minister assure this House that new anti-terrorist legislation will allow for the identification of some of these groups and a complete ban on their operations in Canada?

+-

    Right Hon. Jean Chrétien (Prime Minister, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, we must also not fall into a trap and say that a bill passed in the House of Commons will solve all the problems.

    The Leader of the Opposition likes to talk about the anti-terrorist legislation that exists in the United States, but this legislation did not prevent the September 11 tragedy last week.

[English]

+-

    Mr. Stockwell Day (Leader of the Opposition, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, we have already indicated that we want to support the government as far as we can. We need the clarity to do that. In facing the international threat of terrorism, security abroad is as important as security at home.

    Will the Prime Minister assure the House today that if the United States correctly identifies the sponsors of terrorism and engages in armed conflict, Canada will stand with the United States and our NATO allies and provide, if necessary, Canadian military forces? Canadians need to know, our allies need to know and the cowardly perpetrators of terrorist acts also need to know the answer.

  +-(1420)  

+-

    Right Hon. Jean Chrétien (Prime Minister, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, we said the day after the attack that it was a war against terrorism. We voted at NATO with our allies to say that if one member is attacked we are all attacked and we will stand by what we said.

    At this moment we are in communication with other governments and everyone is analyzing the situation, as they are doing in the United States. We will be participating with the Americans and our allies to make sure that we defeat terrorism.

+-

    Mr. Brian Pallister (Portage—Lisgar, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, Canada's standing in the world depends on its ability to deliver on its commitments. If the United States asks the NATO alliance to participate in military action against those who perpetrated these horrendous acts, I think Canadians deserve to know if our NATO allies can rely on Canada to answer the call, yes or no.

+-

    Right Hon. Jean Chrétien (Prime Minister, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, we voted yes in Brussels last week.

+-

    Mr. Brian Pallister (Portage—Lisgar, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, the Minister of Foreign Affairs says we must review all security related issues. He says we are at war with terrorism and he is right.

    The Prime Minister has argued today and on the past weekend against changing our nation's approaches to security issues. Could the Prime Minister explain to the House the blatant contradiction between the minister's position and his own?

+-

    Right Hon. Jean Chrétien (Prime Minister, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I think the statement made by the hon. member is wrong. What the Minister of Foreign Affairs said and what I say both represent the policies of the government.

[Translation]

+-

    Mr. Gilles Duceppe (Laurier—Sainte-Marie, BQ): Mr. Speaker, when they targeted the United States, the terrorists targeted all democratic countries.

    We must collectively assume our responsibilities, fight terrorism and defend democracy.

    As the House of Commons is directly involved where democracy is concerned, will the Prime Minister promise that the government will not undertake any significant actions without consulting the members first?

+-

    Right Hon. Jean Chrétien (Prime Minister, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, before we reach a final decision with our allies, we will do as we have done in the past.

    Always, before troops have been deployed, we have consulted the House of Commons, and we will do so this time as well.

+-

    Mr. Gilles Duceppe (Laurier—Sainte-Marie, BQ): Mr. Speaker, the House was consulted after the decision had been made or without a vote.

    I ask the Prime Minister if they could do a little more, ensure that all parliamentarians exercise their responsibility, and have the House vote on the government's proposal when the time comes to make a commitment, even a military one.

+-

    Right Hon. Jean Chrétien (Prime Minister, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, the House of Commons is consulted. The House of Commons speaks. The members of all parties may have their say, and a consensus is expressed at that point.

    This is the procedure that has always been followed. I do not see why we should change it under the circumstances, but we will see. If it needs changing, we will change it.

+-

    Mr. Michel Gauthier (Roberval, BQ): Mr. Speaker, while I agree fully with the viewpoint expressed in the government motion with respect to the defence of freedom and democracy, and the desire to bring to justice those who have breached these fundamental values by their terrorist acts, the response to these acts must not be based on intolerance and revenge.

    Will the Prime Minister provide us with some reassurance that there is no question of Canada giving carte blanche to anyone when it joins in the international response to acts of terrorism?

+-

    Right Hon. Jean Chrétien (Prime Minister, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, Canada will assume its responsibilities. There is no question of giving carte blanche to anyone.

    NATO accords provide that parties must be consulted before giving their consent. In their statements on the weekend, the Americans themselves spoke about the co-operation and consultations now taking place between all levels of government.

+-

    Mr. Michel Gauthier (Roberval, BQ): Mr. Speaker, the decisions taken by the government with respect to increased anti-terrorist security measures must not get in the way of our civil liberties.

    Does the Prime Minister agree that implementing safety measures that could jeopardize or interfere with our civil liberties would be to play into the hands of terrorists, who would thus have attained their goal after all? Can the Prime Minister reassure us about the introduction of such measures?

  +-(1425)  

+-

    Right Hon. Jean Chrétien (Prime Minister, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, this is what I said in my speech this morning. Terrorists must not be allowed to win by forcing us to abandon our fundamental freedoms.

[English]

+-

    Ms. Alexa McDonough (Halifax, NDP): Mr. Speaker, my question is for the Prime Minister. Lloyd Axworthy, the Prime Minister's friend and former external affairs minister, has called for world leaders to make sense, not war. He says that the G-8 response to terrorism to date has been more rhetoric than action.

    Could the Prime Minister tell us specifically what Canada will do to ensure that the United Nations plays a critical role in the global solution against terrorism?

+-

    Right Hon. Jean Chrétien (Prime Minister, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, every country is involved with this problem in all parts of the world. Necessarily, they are all members of the United Nations. The United Nations will probably take some initiatives. We will support any initiative that can be adopted, hopefully unanimously, in the House of Commons to make sure that terrorism is really the concern of every nation in the world.

+-

    Ms. Alexa McDonough (Halifax, NDP): Mr. Speaker, last week's terrorist atrocities in the U.S. were surely a crime against humanity. The Statute of Rome must be amended to ensure that terrorism is defined as a specific crime against humanity and that terrorists are tried before the International Criminal Court.

    Will the Prime Minister assure the House that Canada will lead the way in fighting terrorism through multilateral democratic institutions such as the International Criminal Court?

+-

    Right Hon. Jean Chrétien (Prime Minister, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, speaking of the Statute of Rome, Canada has been a leading force to develop this new system of international justice that has been quite effective so far in the Netherlands at this time, where criminals of war in the Balkans are facing international justice.

    If there is a need to amend the treaty, Canada will always be a participant, because at the beginning of this system Canada was one of the initiators.

[Translation]

+-

    Right Hon. Joe Clark (Calgary Centre, PC/DR): Mr. Speaker, my question is for the Prime Minister.

    A mere three months ago, CSIS warned the government that “Canadians, now more than ever, are potential victims and Canada a potential venue for terrorist attacks”.

    Does the government have reason to believe the cells of the al-Qaeda group of Osama bin Laden are, or have been, in operation in Canada?

+-

    Right Hon. Jean Chrétien (Prime Minister, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, all countries in the world are currently confronting the dangers of terrorism. I believe Canada is like all the rest. This includes the United States, Great Britain, France and Germany. This past weekend, terrorist cells were identified in countries other than the U.S. There were cells in Germany and in other countries.

    We are dealing with a worldwide problem, but I am not aware at this time of a cell known to the police to be operating in Canada with the intention of carrying out terrorism in Canada or elsewhere.

+-

    Right Hon. Joe Clark (Calgary Centre, PC/DR): Mr. Speaker, I trust that the Prime Minister is going to confirm this opinion with the appropriate officials and pass the real answer on to the House of Commons.

[English]

    I would like to ask the Prime Minister, why did the cabinet of Canada not meet immediately when this crisis arose? Has it met yet? What kind of signal does the Prime Minister think this casualness sends to allies against terrorism?

+-

    Right Hon. Jean Chrétien (Prime Minister, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, minutes after what happened in New York I and my ministers in every department were doing our jobs. They were on the telephone with me and all the deputy ministers and all the military and security were doing their jobs.

    We are not grandstanding as a government. We are doing our job.

+-

    Mr. Kevin Sorenson (Crowfoot, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, the solicitor general has assured Canadians that the country's security forces are on high alert following the terrorist attacks in America.

    Is the solicitor general confident that our security and intelligence agencies have adequate resources to effectively discover and apprehend terrorists already residing here in Canada?

  +-(1430)  

+-

    Hon. Lawrence MacAulay (Solicitor General of Canada, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, as my hon. colleague is well aware, the director of CSIS has also indicated that he has appropriate funding to fulfil his mandate.

    CSIS also works with security intelligence agencies around the world to make sure that this country remains as safe as possible.

+-

    Mr. Kevin Sorenson (Crowfoot, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, the former commissioner of the RCMP does not share the same confidence that the solicitor general does. In fact Norman Inkster warns that our heightened vigilance following a terrorist attack on the U.S. cannot be allowed to lapse as it has in the past. Mr. Inkster says that if Canada is serious about security we must have appropriate funding and it must be maintained.

    I ask the solicitor general, will he immediately request additional funding for CSIS and the RCMP?

+-

    Hon. Lawrence MacAulay (Solicitor General of Canada, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, as my hon. colleague is well aware, the Prime Minister has indicated that we will walk with the United States all the way.

    The fact of the matter is that what changes need to be made will be made, but it is also important to note that this country in the last budget put $1.5 billion into the public safety envelope. That is a lot of money.

[Translation]

+-

    Ms. Francine Lalonde (Mercier, BQ): Mr. Speaker, we find ourselves in a touchy situation and we should be very cautious so that the war against terrorism does not turn into a clash of civilizations.

    In view of this, does the government intend to involve Canadian diplomacy to help broaden as much as possible the coalition around the United States, by making representations to the international bodies concerned, including the UN security council?

+-

    Hon. John Manley (Minister of Foreign Affairs, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I should point out that under article 5 of the NATO resolution it is also required to provide information to the UN security council. NATO consulted with the UN secretary general. This aspect of multilateralism already exists in the procedures that are being followed in the wake of this catastrophe.

+-

    Ms. Francine Lalonde (Mercier, BQ): Mr. Speaker, could the government tell us if it intends to be proactive with its G-8 allies and also promote long term solutions, such as the fight against poverty, that would help fight terrorism at its roots?

+-

    Hon. John Manley (Minister of Foreign Affairs, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, there are definitely a number of situations around the world that should be examined. We can say that, in this instance, we are having frequent consultations with our allies, including the United States and the other G-8 members.

    We are in the process of responding to the U.S. proposals, but we must first have all the facts and all the information that will allow us to make decisions. Such is the situation right now. We will continue to consult with our allies.

*   *   *

[English]

+-National Defence

+-

    Mr. Leon Benoit (Lakeland, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, nine years ago Canada had 90,000 people serving in our armed forces. We are now down to 55,000 and still falling.

    Our single largest national security force is almost half what it was 10 years ago, and now we are in a war against terrorism and it will involve NATO military strikes. We have excellent people serving but they are already overcommitted.

    Could the Minister of National Defence tell us from where we will get the soldiers to meet both our current NATO commitments and for this new war against terrorism?

+-

    Hon. Art Eggleton (Minister of National Defence, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, the government is committed to an intensified campaign against terrorism. We will stand with the United States and with our allies in weeding out the perpetrators and destroying their organizations wherever they may be.

    It will take some time to do it. It will not be like conventional warfare at all. The kinds of assets and people necessary to do this in the military context are being reviewed and determined at this point in time.

+-

    Mr. Leon Benoit (Lakeland, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, our armed forces are down to almost half the number of people it had 10 years ago and there is a very good chance there will be conventional warfare involved in the war against terrorism.

    Canadians want to know that they are safe in their homes and on the streets, and they want to know that Canada can contribute in a meaningful way with our NATO allies. They need more than words, so how can the minister assure Canadians that we have the people and the tools to meet those commitments?

  +-(1435)  

+-

    Hon. Art Eggleton (Minister of National Defence, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I disagree with the member's numbers, to start with, but let me say that we have quality, top professional people in the Canadian forces. They have demonstrated that time and again.

    They have demonstrated that when possible. They were on the frontlines, first teamers in Kosovo. Just two weeks ago when asked we provided our state of the art Coyote squadron to the former Yugoslav republic of Macedonia.

    We have capabilities and are prepared to make them available in the campaign against terrorism.

[Translation]

+-

    Mr. Claude Bachand (Saint-Jean, BQ): Mr. Speaker, NATO reacted swiftly to the terrorist attacks by invoking article 5 of the North Atlantic Treaty. Since then, several European members of NATO have clarified their interpretation of this gesture and are calling for the utmost caution.

    Could the government provide Canada's interpretation of article 5 of the North Atlantic Treaty?

+-

    Hon. John Manley (Minister of Foreign Affairs, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, we discussed the declaration with our European and American counterparts. The U.S. Secretary of State shared with me his interpretation, whereby the United States would be required to provide NATO with relevant information prior to any decisions being made by the NATO assembly regarding the necessary response.

+-

    Mr. Claude Bachand (Saint-Jean, BQ): Mr. Speaker, this is the first time in history that article 5 of the North Atlantic Treaty is being invoked.

    Could the Minister of National Defence explain what that means in terms of preparing the Canadian army?

[English]

+-

    Hon. Art Eggleton (Minister of National Defence, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, the assets of the Canadian armed forces are known. Our policy is known; it is in the 1994 white paper. Our commitments to our allies through NATO are known.

    We have made a very solid commitment. We are strongly supportive of an effort to combat terrorism. We will develop with our allies the necessary plan and will participate in that plan to carry out the campaign against terrorism.

*   *   *

+-Terrorism

+-

    Mr. Rahim Jaffer (Edmonton—Strathcona, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, last week the U.S. Secretary of State, Colin Powell, stated: “Some nations need to be more vigilant against terrorism at their borders if they want their relationship with the U.S. to remain strong”. Our economy is dependent upon our trading relationship with the U.S. and cannot survive a sustained slowdown at our borders.

    My question is for the revenue minister. What customs initiatives has he undertaken to secure our borders from terrorism in order to protect Canadians?

+-

    Hon. Martin Cauchon (Minister of National Revenue, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, right after the tragic events customs moved to high alert. It means more examinations, more use of soft technology, and continued good co-operation with U.S. customs. We have exchanged some information, some intelligence, and we have been sharing the databank we have.

    Customs is a question of risk assessment. About a year and half ago we tabled a new reform to ensure we have much better risk assessment.

    As the Prime Minister has said on terrorism, it is a threat that faces all countries of the world. It means that we will have to keep working together in good co-operation.

+-

    Mr. Rahim Jaffer (Edmonton—Strathcona, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, this has been a tragic week for all humanity. Not only were thousands killed as a result of terrorist attacks in the U.S., in Canada minority groups, in particular the Canadian Islamic community, have been victimized by acts of violence and threats. School children have been threatened; mosques have been fire bombed and businesses vandalized. Many Canadians are in fear of their own lives in Canada.

    My question is for the Prime Minister. What is his government's plan to end these threatening acts and punish those who commit them?

+-

    Right Hon. Jean Chrétien (Prime Minister, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, anybody who commits an act like that is acting against the Criminal Code of Canada. I hope that the police will arrest them and bring them to justice.

    As far as I am concerned, I thought many times about it, we are all Canadians, whatever the colour, the language, the religion--

  +-(1440)  

+-

    The Speaker: The hon. member for Hamilton West.

+-

    Mr. Stan Keyes (Hamilton West, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, an important question that the opposition has failed to ask concerns Canadians who were In New York City at the time of the horrific tragedy of September 11.

    My question is for the Minister of Foreign Affairs. Could he advise the House exactly how many Canadians were affected and what the government is doing for Canadians and their families both in New York City and here at home?

+-

    Hon. John Manley (Minister of Foreign Affairs, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, since the crisis began we have had consular officials in New York, in Ottawa and elsewhere around the world on a 24 hour a day service receiving calls from Canadians.

    As of last evening about 13,000 calls of all sorts have been received. Happily I can report that the number of Canadians unaccounted for has been diminishing. Currently there are somewhere between 45 and 70 Canadians whose whereabouts are unaccounted for and who may have been in New York at the time of the catastrophe.

    Our officials remain in very close contact with the family members and we appreciate the supply of information they are providing to our officials throughout the days and nights.

+-

    Mr. Svend Robinson (Burnaby—Douglas, NDP): Mr. Speaker, earlier in question period the solicitor general said that Canada would walk with the United States all the way. The foreign minister has said that we would give our undivided support to the United States.

    I would like to ask the Prime Minister for his assurance that Canada, in any response to a request for assistance militarily from the United States, will insist that the response fully respects international law and avoids any further loss of civilian lives?

+-

    Right Hon. Jean Chrétien (Prime Minister, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, Canada will stand by our neighbour and friend, the United States. We are a member of NATO and will be discussing with our allies to make sure that an appropriate response is prepared.

    There is no rush. We have to do it deliberately, with calm, and with the clear goal of destroying terrorism. When there is an adequate plan we will join our friends and allies, the Americans and the other nations of the world, to make sure we work effectively against terrorism.

+-

    Mr. Svend Robinson (Burnaby—Douglas, NDP): Mr. Speaker, clearly we share the goal of destroying terrorism, but we do not want to destroy international law and innocent civilian lives in the process.

    I would once again ask the Prime Minister a very specific question. Will the Prime Minister assure the House and assure Canadians, who are deeply concerned that he may be giving carte blanche to the United States in this incident, that any response Canada supports will fully respect international law and will avoid the loss of innocent civilian lives?

+-

    Right Hon. Jean Chrétien (Prime Minister, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I gave an adequate response, but no one can guarantee to anyone that there will be no civilians who unfortunately might lose their lives in any operation. It would be naive to think so. When we are in a war we have to make sure that those who are guilty face the consequences of their acts.

    We cannot promise that not a single life will be lost. Some soldiers and some civilians might be affected, but sometimes that is the price we pay to have peace and destroy the evil of terrorism.

+-

    Mr. Chuck Strahl (Fraser Valley, PC/DR): Mr. Speaker, the foreign affairs minister has said that in light of the horrible events of September 11 all security measures must be reviewed. Members of parliament are eager to participate in that review.

    Will the Prime Minister ask the standing committees of the House of Commons to undertake, as our first measure of business, an immediate and urgent examination of the current security situation in airports, airplanes, ports, borders and security agencies so they can quickly provide the government with recommendations for improvements to the Canadian system and recommendations to better co-ordinate activities between Canadian agencies and their international counterparts?

+-

    Hon. Don Boudria (Leader of the Government in the House of Commons, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, Standing Orders 108(1) and 108(2) of the House of Commons already permit committees themselves to generate an issue of business for further study. That is clearly accommodated for right now to the extent that the government can accommodate any reasonable request of that nature, and of course we would co-operate.

  +-(1445)  

+-

    Mrs. Elsie Wayne (Saint John, PC/DR): Mr. Speaker, my question is for the Minister of National Defence. Is the government's commitment to stand shoulder to shoulder with the Americans limited to humanitarian aid and North American security only, or will our armed forces be committed to possible attacks overseas?

+-

    Hon. Art Eggleton (Minister of National Defence, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, we are committed to combating terrorism. We are committed to working with our American allies, our other allies in NATO and other countries of like mind, to combat terrorism whether it is on our own shores, in our own country and continent, or overseas.

*   *   *

+-Immigration

+-

    Mr. Paul Forseth (New Westminster—Coquitlam—Burnaby, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, my question is for the immigration minister. The auditor general says that people can come to our borders, tell us just about anything they want, and we have very little means to verify it. What is the government doing to close this big hole in our security system?

+-

    Hon. Elinor Caplan (Minister of Citizenship and Immigration, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, the protection of the citizens of Canada is a priority, particularly security threats. We are all concerned and want to do everything we can to fight terrorism.

    I would say to the member that Bill C-11 which is presently before the Senate will give my department new and important tools. Just weeks ago members of his party said the bill was too tough. I hope he will agree today that we need it and that the Senate should pass it as quickly as possible.

+-

    Mr. Paul Forseth (New Westminster—Coquitlam—Burnaby, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, our leader rose in the House and was very critical of Bill C-11. Canadians are feeling very vulnerable. The auditor general says that people are admitted through our immigration system without assurances that they have not committed crimes abroad. That is what the auditor general says.

    What has the minister done to close this absolutely huge gap in our security system?

+-

    Hon. Elinor Caplan (Minister of Citizenship and Immigration, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, the premise of the member's question is not accurate. Anyone who comes to Canada as an immigrant must have a full security and criminality screening before they come. That is a statutory requirement today.

    I will say that Bill C-11 gives us important new tools to ensure that we are able to do things such as up-front security screening and to bar access to the refugee determination system for anyone that we believe poses a security threat to Canada. We need the bill. His party did not support it. I hope they have changed their minds and will encourage the Senate to pass the bill quickly.

*   *   *

[Translation]

+-Foreign Affairs

+-

    Mr. Stéphan Tremblay (Lac-Saint-Jean--Saguenay, BQ): Mr. Speaker, a number of Quebec and Canadian nationals are at present in a high risk area around Afghanistan, and many are concerned.

    Could the Minister of Foreign Affairs tell us what measures have been taken to evacuate these people should the worst occur?

+-

    Hon. John Manley (Minister of Foreign Affairs, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, first, I thank the member for his question. We are currently advising all Canadians against visiting these areas right now.

    Second, our ambassador and officials in the area can help Canadians get out. We are advising them to do so immediately.

+-

    Mr. Stéphan Tremblay (Lac-Saint-Jean--Saguenay, BQ): Mr. Speaker, we have received calls from people currently in Pakistan or the Middle East. One Quebec woman, who works for an NGO in Pakistan, has asked for help.

    Has the minister considered emergency measures to evacuate Canadians at risk?

+-

    Hon. John Manley (Minister of Foreign Affairs, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, our representatives in the area are currently making preparations.

    The member could advise those involved to contact representatives in embassies or consulates as soon as possible to obtain information.

*   *   *

[English]

+-Airline Safety

+-

    Mr. James Moore (Port Moody—Coquitlam—Port Coquitlam, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, as a result of Tuesday's tragic events, U.S. transportation secretary Norman Mineta announced that FAA federal air marshals who are trained will be allowed on board aircraft, flying anonymously on select flights. Saturday's National Post reports that Air Canada is calling on the federal government to implement a similar program in Canada.

    Will the government finance air marshal in Canada?

  +-(1450)  

+-

    Hon. David Collenette (Minister of Transport, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, first I would like to pay tribute to all the workers in the transportation industry, the airlines, and the airports across the country for their Herculean efforts, and also the people of Canada who welcomed all of those stranded air passengers, in particular the people of Atlantic Canada who welcomed half of all the flights.

    To deploy armed air marshals on flights is a radical suggestion. It poses severe logistical and financial implications and it is not the direction in which we are moving.

    We are committed to providing enhanced security on the ground so we will not need air marshals on planes.

+-

    Mr. James Moore (Port Moody—Coquitlam—Port Coquitlam, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, there is understandable concern over air travel in Canada and Transport Canada's record of fast tracking security solutions.

    Air Canada is taking care of its own employees and passengers by locking flight deck doors and examining whether or not the government should be implementing a similar security policy as is being implemented in the United States.

    Will the Minister of Transport commit today to implement new safety measures such as mandating the installation of metal doors between the cockpit and passenger cabin and require that those doors be locked at all times during commercial flights?

+-

    Hon. David Collenette (Minister of Transport, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, we are working with the FAA and ICAO and all the international organizations in reviewing all of our airline and airport procedures. To follow up on the hon. member's point, I am announcing that cockpit doors on all Canadian airline passenger flights, domestic and international, will be locked for the full duration of the flights effective immediately.

*   *   *

+-National Defence

+-

    Mr. Dominic LeBlanc (Beauséjour—Petitcodiac, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, my question is for the Minister of National Defence.

    Canadian forces were on standby last week to offer humanitarian assistance to the Americans during that terrible crisis. Can the minister elaborate on the resources made available to the Americans by the Canadian forces?

+-

    Hon. Art Eggleton (Minister of National Defence, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, as soon as we heard the tragic news, we were in immediate contact with the United States with respect to what we could provide from the Canadian forces, who in fact pre-positioned some of our disaster assistance response teams, some 200 strong, from Petawawa into Trenton. We put three naval vessels on high alert to be able to take humanitarian aid into the New York area as would be required.

    Because of the outpouring of support that has come from New York and the immediate surrounding areas, they have not had to call on these assets. However, we have made them available. They know that they are available and will continue to be available. They are grateful for that response from the Canadian forces.

*   *   *

+-Terrorism

+-

    Mr. Vic Toews (Provencher, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, although Britain and the United States have passed strict anti-terrorist laws, it is an international disgrace that Canada has none.

    Our allies and security agencies are concerned that Canada continues to be a safe haven for terrorists.

    Why has the minister failed to take these essential steps to protect the security of Canadians?

+-

    Hon. Anne McLellan (Minister of Justice, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, the hon. member should be aware that Canada has signed all 12 UN counterterrorism conventions, have ratified 10 of them and in fact are in the process of taking steps to ratify and implement the remaining two.

+-

    Mr. Vic Toews (Provencher, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, they sign documents but they never implement.

    It is clear that on February 15 this year the Supreme Court created a safe haven for violent criminals who come here to escape the full consequences of the laws of the United States. Now these criminals, including terrorists, can escape to Canada to avoid the full consequences of the law, of prosecution in our country's ally, the United States.

    How can the minister reassure Canadians that we will take those legislative steps to ensure that will be taken care of?

+-

    Hon. Anne McLellan (Minister of Justice, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, the hon. member should not misrepresent what the Supreme Court of Canada said in the case to which he is referring, that of Burns and Rafay. In fact, the hon. member is a former attorney general. He should know that the Supreme Court of Canada left me with the discretion to determine whether I will seek assurances in exceptional circumstances.

  +-(1455)  

[Translation]

+-

    Ms. Pierrette Venne (Saint-Bruno—Saint-Hubert, Ind. BQ): Mr. Speaker, the situation in which we have found ourselves over the past few days calls for improved communication between the various intelligence bodies, such as the Canadian Security Intelligence Service, the RCMP, the Sûreté du Québec, and the various municipal police forces.

    My question is for the solicitor general. Will the government tell us how it plans to ensure greater co-ordination among these various police and security services in the country?

[English]

+-

    Hon. Lawrence MacAulay (Solicitor General of Canada, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, my hon. colleague is well aware that in this country nationally with CSIS and the RCMP we co-operate fully with our U.S. counterparts and counterparts around the world. With the provincial and municipal police forces, it was quite obvious a few months ago how the co-operation affected this country with all the arrests in organized crime. In fact, all police forces work together in order to make sure that public safety is always adhered to.

[Translation]

+-

    Hon. Denis Paradis (Brome—Missisquoi, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, although the Canadian public understands the need for increased vigilance at our borders, these stepped-up safety measures are causing some delays for Canadian businesses.

    Will the Minister of National Revenue and Secretary of State responsible for the Economic Development Agency of Canada explain to us the measures taken by the agency in response to these concerns, which are shared by the citizens of Brome--Missisquoi and by all Canadians?

+-

    Hon. Martin Cauchon (Minister of National Revenue and Secretary of State (Economic Development Agency of Canada for the Regions of Quebec), Lib.): Mr. Speaker, as I mentioned, right after the tragic events, customs officers moved onto high alert.

    Obviously, we put in place additional measures with a primary view to the safety of all Canadians.

    We are now proceeding on a risk assessment basis. We are also assessing this risk jointly with U.S. customs officers.

    We are fully aware that risk must be assessed on a regular basis so that there can also be a balanced approach vis-à-vis trade.

    We will ensure that action will be taken to return as soon as possible to the most appropriate measures from a trade point of view.

*   *   *

[English]

+-The Economy

+-

    Mr. Scott Brison (Kings—Hants, PC/DR): Mr. Speaker, last Tuesday's attacks clearly have economic implications for Canada. The U.S. Congress has already voted $20 billion for increased defence and security in the wake of these attacks. Will our Minister of Finance finally introduce a full budget this fall so that we can fully debate whether unaccountable new Liberal spending should take priority over measures designed and required to strengthen our security here as a country?

+-

    Hon. Paul Martin (Minister of Finance, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, the hon. member is asking for an accountability, as are a number of the economic commentators. I can assure the hon. member, as has been our practice in the past, that when the fall update comes out, he will have a comprehensive set of projections setting the context for all spending, protecting our tax cuts and at the same time indicating the amount of debt that the government has paid back.

*   *   *

+-Terrorism

+-

    Mr. Bill Blaikie (Winnipeg—Transcona, NDP): Mr. Speaker, Canadians are eager to know more about the nature of the commitment that the Government of Canada has made on their behalf .

    The Prime Minister was asked earlier about the role of international law and the rule of international law. I would like to ask him again whether or not the commitments the government has made were made in the context of having to respect international law in whatever efforts the Canadian government joins in order to combat terrorism.

+-

    Right Hon. Jean Chrétien (Prime Minister, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, our commitment has been made in the context of an attack against western civilization by terrorists. We are a very busy member of NATO and had to fly there last week so that we could all defend ourselves collectively.

    Of course when a proposition comes from the discussion with the Americans and our allies, there will be an occasion for the House of Commons to discuss and debate that as I would like to see.

[Translation]

+-

    Mr. Mario Laframboise (Argenteuil—Papineau—Mirabel, BQ): Mr. Speaker, the attacks on September 11 have pointed out the shortcomings of airport security measures, in the United States as well as in Canada.

    In Canada, one of the things that was pointed out was that airport authorities awarded security contracts to the lowest bidder, with the agreement of the government.

    Can the minister tells us whether he intends to change this way of doing things so that future contracts be awarded according to security standards rather than to the lowest bidder?

  +-(1500)  

+-

    Hon. David Collenette (Don Valley East, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, we believe that the measures we have in place in Canada at the present time are very good, but we have announced improvements to them. We are going to work in conjunction with the airlines and the security companies to step up all of the regulations.

[English]

+-

    Mr. Randy White (Langley—Abbotsford, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, Canada was a participant and signatory to the UN sponsored international convention on the suppression of terrorist funding. As such, we are obliged to make it a criminal offence to raise funds for the terrorists.

    I would like to ask the solicitor general why we have not yet met this obligation.

+-

    Hon. Anne McLellan (Minister of Justice, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, as I have already indicated, we are taking steps to implement the convention on the suppression of terrorist financing. In fact it is the government's intention to introduce criminal law to implement the provisions of that convention in the near future.

+-

    The Speaker: I would like to draw to the attention of hon. members that I think we have done more questions today than during any other question period in this parliament. I draw to the attention of hon. members the fact that question period was quite quiet. Maybe that is the reason we got more questions and answers in, but I will let hon. members draw their own conclusions.

*   *   *

+-Business of the House

+-

    Hon. Don Boudria (Leader of the Government in the House of Commons, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I rise on a point of order. I wish to designate tomorrow as an allotted day.

-Government Orders

[Government Orders]

*   *   *

[English]

+-Attack on the United States

    The House resumed consideration of the motion.

+-

    Ms. Marlene Catterall: Mr. Speaker, I wish to notify the House that for the rest of the day, Liberal members will be dividing the time allocated to them for debate.

[Translation]

+-

    Hon. Martin Cauchon (Minister of National Revenue and Secretary of State (Economic Development Agency of Canada for the Regions of Quebec), Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I would again express my deepest condolences to the American people in this most difficult period. I would also offer my condolences and my support to the Canadians and other foreign nationals who lost a family member or relatives in the terrorist attacks. Innocent people were the victims of these monstrous attacks. Canadians are at once saddened and incensed by this indescribable violence.

  +-(1505)  

[English]

    Canada and the United States are the longest to have successfully managed a shared border. We share with our neighbours democratic values based on social, economic and political liberty.

    I would like to tell the House about the actions taken by the Canada Customs and Revenue Agency to support the response of the Government of Canada to last Tuesday's terrorist attack on the United States. The CCRA takes the threat of terrorism extremely seriously. We have an active counterterrorism program that is very effective. Our customs officers are well trained to identify and detain suspected terrorists.

[Translation]

    Since the tragic events in the United States, the priority of the CCRA has been the health and security of all Canadians and of all passengers arriving by air.

    In addition, all our resources were deployed in looking after, together with our partners, the unprecedented number of aircraft and passengers rerouted from their planned destination of the United States to different airports in Canada. I am proud to be able to say that, thanks to the co-operation and understanding of these travellers, we successfully met the challenge with all the disruption involved.

    Over the past six days, the CCRA intensified its efforts and consultations with its partners in Canada and abroad, for example, by sharing information and through increased co-operation in the fight against terrorism.

    We were also in contact with the U.S. customs service to offer our assistance where it was needed and to share information. The agency worked not only with the RCMP, but also with Citizenship and Immigration Canada and with the Canadian Security Information Service to protect the border and keeping trade routes open.

    Customs officers were on heightened watch at all border points. We intensified checks of traveller identification and increased our efforts in all sectors to ensure the health and safety of Canadians. That means more questions to be put to travellers and more identity checks, screenings and referrals to immigration or other agencies.

[English]

    Although extra vigilance at the land border has resulted in delays at some border points, I am confident that Canadians expect us to do whatever is necessary to keep them safe. We have tried to minimize the impact of these delays on Canadians and Canadian business by adding additional staff.

    However from an economic and commercial perspective I and many businesses have been particularly concerned with congestion and delays at certain major crossings on both sides of the border. In addition to adding staff we have established a website to keep clients informed. It provides up to date information to our clients on the traffic situation at these major points of entry.

    I can tell the House that we have tried as much as possible to minimize delays. We remain committed to keeping the stream of legitimate people and goods flowing across the land border.

[Translation]

    I would now like to turn my attention to what will have to be done in the future. It is critical, and even more so in light of the events of the last few days, to improve our ability to identify high risk people and goods in Canada's airports and seaports, before they can enter our country and North America. The risk of terrorism for Canadians is much greater in the North American perimeter than at the land border with the United States.

    Customs organizations around the world must continue to modernize their procedures if they want to keep up with the tactics and priorities of terrorists and other groups that pose a threat to honest citizens. This is why, in April of last year, I launched a customs reform to strengthen our ability to manage the Canadian border.

  +-(1510)  

[English]

    Our new approach to border management is outlined in Bill S-23. It provides the logistical framework for the customs action plan which would give us the tools to protect Canadians by focusing on high risks. At the same time it would strengthen our economy by facilitating the movement of low risk people and goods. For example, the new system would give us advance critical information on passengers and flight crews so that customs officers could make decisions on admissibility prior to their arrival.

    On the commercial side, the same concepts would be implemented for goods entering Canada by enhancing the ability of custom officers to target, identify and examine high risk shipments. We are in the process of rolling out all these action plan initiatives over the next four years.

[Translation]

    However, in light of the events of the past few days, I instructed our whole customs team to take the following measures. First, assess the feasibility of speeding up the implementation of the initiatives proposed in the action plan.

    Second, focus our new protection initiatives on the perimeter, where the risk is greater.

    Third, beginning today, all our procedures, both with regard to travellers and the trade sector, will be reviewed to make sure that the lessons learned from the events of last week can help identify and intercept high risk people and process goods in a more efficient way.

    Moreover, as we know, Bill S-23 is now before the House and will very soon, I hope, be referred to a parliamentary committee.

    Of course, I invite all parliamentarians to make comments and constructive proposals so that together we can continue to build a good and even an excellent customs system that will protect all Canadians, while taking into consideration a balanced approach regarding trade, tourism and the various types of travellers.

[English]

    I express my appreciation to all Canada customs staff, particularly those who voluntarily spent their off duty time working to help colleagues after hearing about the tragic situation. Day in and day out our officers have proven their commitment to stopping inadmissible people and goods from entering Canada. I thank them for their ongoing efforts in this regard and their overall dedication to their task.

    I also thank Canadians for their understanding and patience. I assure them that we are making every possible effort to maintain the security of Canada and its borders. Terrorism is an evolving phenomenon. It is critical that Canada, the United States and like-minded countries remain alert to the changing face of terrorism so that together we can fight terrorism once and for all.

[Translation]

    In short, we have taken tow major measures. First, we have managed, during the past week, with the co-operation of the businesses and public, to deal with this catastrophe while ensuring that life continues in as normal a fashion as possible.

    Second, we have a solid plan for the future, a plan that will help us successfully meet current challenges.

    I cannot overemphasize the dedication and efforts of the agency's employees in recent days and I know that we can continue to count on them in the future.

[English]

+-

    Mr. Rahim Jaffer (Edmonton--Strathcona, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, I join the minister today in congratulating and commending all the customs agents and people at our borders who are working as hard as they can to do their jobs as effectively as they can. The minister is right to take the time to congratulate them for their hard work and effort.

    More important, the minister identified areas on which the government will focus to solve some of the problems we have at our border crossings. He mentioned the need of customs agents, who are at the frontline of attack, to be able to both identify potential high risk people going across the border and facilitate the commerce part of things. I think that is of concern to a lot of Canadians.

    However we hear from a lot of our customs agents at the border that one of their biggest problems is lack of resources. As the minister has mentioned, even though we have added more customs agents at the border their tools and resources for doing their jobs are limited. Unfortunately this results in the fact that they cannot be as thorough as they potentially could be.

    The minister mentioned new technologies and a few other things for addressing the issue. Could the minister be more specific in the House today and give us an exact numerical value for these resources? What specific tools will he be giving to our agents at the frontline to allow them to do their jobs more effectively?

  +-(1515)  

+-

    Hon. Martin Cauchon: Mr. Speaker, I thank the hon. member for joining me in thanking the customs officers for their work. With respect to the question of resources at the border and the volume we deal with on a daily, weekly and year round basis, I have said many times that we are living in a global marketplace.

    We on the customs side have what we call a dual mandate. If one has a look at the mandate the question of the safety of our population is a very important cornerstone of it.

    In facing new realities such as the threat of terrorism and the question of resources, the way to manage the border is to proceed with the type of reform we tabled a year and a half ago: Bill S-23. We are trying today to proceed with a much better risk management by using soft technology. In doing so we will be able to use our resources where there is a higher or an unknown risk, and therefore be more efficient in our mandate.

    What does this mean? Members know we are using passport and licence plate readers, ion scans, x-rays and the databank. If we keep doing this, while using intelligence and continuing to co-operate and exchange intelligence with other countries, we could proceed with new ways of delivering the services of customs.

    I will give an example. Let us take a commercial flight. Normally when people come to Canada on a commercial flight we must stop them and proceed with interviews. Why do we not obtain all the information about people on a flight before they get to Canada?

    With the information we have in the databank we would be able to analyze passengers on a certain commercial flight. When they got to the airport we could ask those who could represent a risk to our society to stop at the primary inspection line and then be referred to a secondary one. We could let the other people cross the border in a normal and standard fashion. That is an example.

    We would like to use what we call palm readers at airports. It is a type of soft technology or new method of doing business which we at customs would like to use.

    We must focus on the parameters as well. As we all know, we have free trade and economic links with the rest of North America. This is important. We must make sure we have a balanced approach and continue to be efficient for our society.

[Translation]

+-

    Mr. Robert Lanctôt (Châteauguay, BQ): Mr. Speaker, I too would like to congratulate the customs officers. Pleasing as the minister's speech is, there are some aspects I would like to hear him address.

    In Quebec recently there have been lineups of three hours or more. We are told that surveillance will be stepped up. If, however, the staff and the infrastructures are not there, and if the technology is not made accessible to customs officers, the lineups will be even longer, even if they are doing their level best.

    At the Lacolle border crossing last week the wait was in excess of three hours. I wonder if it did not even reach six hours at one point. One can well imagine what will happen to commerce and to free trade if we say there will be more surveillance and more checks. There has to be staff for that. What can the minister tell us in this connection?

  +-(1520)  

+-

    Hon. Martin Cauchon: Mr. Speaker, it must be recognized that the situation last week and today is absolutely special, exceptional and unfortunate. It is a crisis situation. Customs have, of course, put in place security measures as a natural reaction to such a situation.

    Once again, I must express my thanks to all customs employees for their excellent work. As I have said, the work of customs is, first and foremost, to carry out a risk assessment in order to ensure that our dual mandate is being properly fulfilled. At the present time, customs is facing a huge volume, both in commercial traffic and in the numbers of business travellers and tourists.

    That is why we proceeded with a reform one and one-half years ago. That reform is now included in Bill S-23, which is before parliament.

    We hope to see it referred committee very very soon. I invite the hon. member to share his point of view and his constructive comments so that we may continue to work together to build an excellent customs system.

+-

    Mr. Michel Gauthier (Roberval, BQ): Mr. Speaker, naturally, I would like to begin by echoing the sentiments of the leader of the Bloc Quebecois and conveying, along with my colleagues, our deepest condolences to the American people and to the friends and families of the victims, to all those affected by the tragedy, and to the people of Canada, who have also been severely affected by this act of terrorism.

    The western world has been dealt a hard blow, and now it is time for a response.

    I am worried about the potential magnitude of this response. Many of our citizens and my constituents with whom I discussed the issue during conversations last week are concerned. People are afraid.

    We are particularly afraid of the response to terrorism not being adequate, or whose force would not be adequate, potentially resulting in an escalation of violence, which nobody wants to see.

    It is with this in mind that I take part in the debate, hoping that the government will hear the message which members of the House have for it.

    At no time must our actions be guided by anything other than a desire to reduce the number of acts of terrorism and to eliminate them in so far as possible, if that can be done. Nor should any action be taken that does not meet this objective.

    This is not a time for vengeance. It is a time to get our anti-terrorist message across. We must not be driven by the pain we felt during last week's events and by the indignation we all felt at seeing those events. We must be responsible.

    In this regard, the words of the Prime Minister, who said that wisdom and tolerance should guide our future actions, provided some reassurance.

    I put a question to the Prime Minister during oral question period and he reassured us that there was no question of Canada giving carte blanche to anyone.

    There is no getting around it. A responsible country, a responsible government, has a duty to weigh very carefully every action and decision which it takes.

    With this end in view, I was stunned that the House did not give unanimous consent to allow parliamentarians to discuss an issue as important as this until late into the night, as was anticipated. I find it quite unbelievable that some refused to sit beyond 6.30 p.m. to discuss a topic of such critical importance.

    I hope that the discussions held here will convince us of the need to be extremely cautious, extremely reasonable and extremely circumspect of everything that could happen from this moment on.

    I will not be using the ten minutes allotted to me, as I understand my colleague responsible for foreign affairs wishes to speak. Therefore I have only five minutes, but I should like to talk about safety measures.

    During question period, I asked the Prime Minister if safety measures anticipated over the next few weeks and months ran the risk of compromising our freedom.

    We were given the required assurances. Well, we were told that this would be taken into consideration and that, at no time, could we accept having our fundamental freedoms affected by heightened safety measures, which would be playing into the hands of those who would attack our freedom.

    I would like to suggest to the government one or two avenues we should be exploring.

  +-(1525)  

    On the subject of security, given the fact that the lowest bidders are awarded the contract to clear people on both international and domestic flights through the security checkpoint, the government should intervene and could do so easily to put special emphasis on the quality of training given these people on the front line.

    We must not forget that all those who, unfortunately, become terrorists by taking a flight, as happened last week, passed through a checkpoint somewhere and were not detected by anyone there. I realize perfection does not exist, but it seems to me that we should very quickly raise the standards of security training given these people.

    The government will also have to quickly come up with measures to ensure the protection and security of crews, for the people who work on planes, so this terrible tragedy may never be repeated.

    I imagine we will soon try the terrorists. We must ensure that a civilization or religious beliefs are not put on trial. We must ensure calmly, with discernment and in full respect of the rules of international justice, that those sought and tried are truly guilty and that, at no time, do we attach the label of international terrorism the label to a particular ethnic group or religious belief. There is only a small band of terrorists the planet must rid itself of and nothing else. We must limit ourselves to that.

    In closing, I invite the government to use international means already in place, to use Canadian diplomacy to its fullest, so the members of the government can use their contacts to ensure that whatever action is taken is the result of a very broad consensus among a number of countries and that whatever must be done be done without a shadow of a doubt as to need. Let us hope that the greatest number of lives may be spared and that those living near the terrorists being sought may suffer as little as possible.

  +-(1530)  

[English]

+-

    Ms. Jean Augustine (Etobicoke--Lakeshore, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I think all of us in the House are touched by this tragedy. I would like to extend my condolences to all those affected by this. I know that in Etobicoke--Lakeshore neighbours, friends and family are all joining together in their sorrow and sharing as a community. We pride ourselves on the fact that we are multicultural, multiracial and multi-religious and that we live together harmoniously.

    I am touched also by the previous speaker's response. What concrete things would he like to see the government make available for community healing at this time?

[Translation]

+-

    Mr. Michel Gauthier: Mr. Speaker, whether for technical or organizational reasons in the House, I did not unfortunately hear the hon. member's question. I wonder if she could repeat her question. I truly apologize for this.

[English]

+-

    Ms. Jean Augustine: Mr. Speaker, I will go right to my question. I am talking about community healing at this time. As communities get together to reflect on who they are as communities, what concrete suggestions can the member make to us as members to bring about community healing as we move forward?

[Translation]

+-

    Mr. Michel Gauthier: Mr. Speaker, it is extremely difficult, in a debate like this one, to make specific recommendations.

    The issue that concerns us today, including those communities that could eventually suffer reprisals, must be examined as a whole.

    If the government action is properly targeted from the outset, if the conditions to broaden an international consensus are present, if what is done is largely condoned, if the protection of all the parties, including neighbouring communities and people who live in our region and who could suffer reprisals of one type or another, if all the government measures were based on collective decisions, not only from the House of Commons, but from all the countries and if everything that is done is accomplished with the deep conviction that it must be done and that it is fair, then we will minimize the inconveniences that could face some communities and groups, between countries or in any relationship during this exercise.

    Caution, wisdom, the very broad consensus and the appropriateness of the actions that we take will minimize all the possible and unthinkable risks that could arise following deliberate actions.

    I have no other comment to make. We all have work to do together and this is why we are having this debate. I hope that hon. members will give us a lot of information by expressing their views and telling us what they heard from their constituents as to how we should go about this issue.

+-

    Mr. Robert Lanctôt (Châteauguay, BQ): Mr. Speaker, I would like to ask my colleague from Roberval a short question.

    When he refers to small groups of terrorists, when we hear that there are more than 25 and perhaps as many as 50 places where they may exist, does this also include countries that help these groups form?

+-

    Mr. Michel Gauthier: Mr. Speaker, I do not think that it is the purview of the House of Commons to determine what the real targets are for us at this point in time.

    It is important to know that when I refer to small groups of terrorists, everything is relative. From what I can tell, we are not talking about entire populations. It was in contrast to entire populations that I referred to small groups of terrorists.

    When we consider the scope of the response such as the one that will be undertaken, we need to understand that 50, 100 or 150 organized terrorists around the world would not be considered as very large groups, when we take into account the magnitude of the forces that will rally around NATO or UN countries, if the UN takes part.

    Therefore it is important to be cautious, to make a safe and careful move and to spare, as much as possible, the people living in these countries that are involved, though not of their own free will.

  +-(1535)  

+-

    Ms. Francine Lalonde (Mercier, BQ): Mr. Speaker, my first words will be ones of compassion and sympathy for all who in New York or elsewhere mourn a death, or worse, the disappearance of a person, not knowing how that person died. They may not ever see the body or ever know the person's suffering.

    I still get goose bumps as I think of the long minutes I lived through when I thought my youngest son was a prisoner of that tower of death, the World Trade Center. He was to work there on the morning of September 11.

    I am moved by the almost unanimous condemnation by countries after the terrorist attack on New York and Washington. I know it does not come from the fact that over 5,000 of the dead were American. It comes instead from the feeling that this new instrument of war, because I think that is what the acts of the terrorists in New York and Washington amount to, was quickly perceived as a potential threat to absolutely any country in ways yet unsuspected, specifically, naturally, democracies.

    We are in fact now seeing a new form of kamikaze terrorism. Not only are human beings agreeing to have their own death detonate the death of others, but they prepare long in advance with others to carry out a plan that extends the scope of their action by using technology against those they target.

    Horrible as it was, the September 11, 2001, attack was frightening because of what it implies as well. This time commercial airlines were used to serve the purposes of the perpetrators. What will it be tomorrow?Will each new advance in science become in their hands a weapon against democracies and peoples? Does the missile defence shield not appear rather miserable under such circumstances?

    As a number of speakers have already said, we have experienced a huge change. The United States has been struck a heavy blow, with the symbols of its economic and financial power collapsed into thousands of tons of blood-stained metal and concrete. The Pentagon, that symbol of military strength, experienced a fiery hit as well. The life of two huge metropolises was totally turned upside down and their services severely challenged. It was only with the contribution of volunteers that the problem could be dealt with, volunteers whose acts of bravery will not all gain recognition. In fact, on the contrary, some of them have been rewarded with death.

    The public is still worried and angry. Anger often goes hand in hand with a desire for vengeance. As we know, however, vengeance, no matter how natural it may seem, is not desirable.

    From now on, no country anywhere can consider itself protected from such a misfortune. That is why the United States is not alone in this. The members of NATO, including Canada, have agreed for the first time ever we are told, to implement their mechanism of military solidarity. Before that, however, as the secretary general of NATO has said, the U.S. needs to establish that the attack was indeed directed from outside the country. Each country can then decide what means it will contribute to this undertaking, which I hope will be a collective one.

  +-(1540)  

    United States President George Bush, having recently identified bin Laden as the prime suspect, has declared war against those responsible for these dreadful crimes and the countries that assist or shelter them. Yesterday he promised Americans and the world a crusade against evil.

    The Bloc Quebecois supports the statement by NATO. If it is established to the satisfaction of NATO that article 5 could apply, we ask that any decision of reprisals by Canada be submitted for discussion and a vote by parliament. We have heard from the Prime Minister that this is not the usual way of doing things, but that could be changed.

    In fact, this feeling is found among the public. I met a number of them on Sunday and they do not want there to be a blank cheque. They are concerned, and they do not want to be dragged into a war when they cannot foresee the outcome.

    There are eleven international conventions on terrorism. The last two have not been ratified by Canada. The latest in particular addresses the criminalization of funding terrorism.

    I hope that Canada would, after discussion in the House and in parliament, equip itself with the means set out in this convention. I personally was interested to see that the Canadian Alliance, while stressing the work done in Great Britain on the antiterrorism act, acknowledged the great work done by the UN, since the convention originated with the UN. Great Britain has ratified this convention.

    As the hon. member mentioned, there will most certainly be a debate on security measures. There will also surely be agreements to fight terrorism and targeted military operations. However, this is not enough. We will have to review the Canadian foreign policy which, currently, is primarily based on trade, without being adequately related to human rights and without being adequately related, and far from it, to opposing not only the gap between rich and poor countries, but also to helping the economic development of poor countries.

    While it is critical to respond without hesitation to this new form of attack that is dangerous for democracy, it will be hard to eradicate it. Let us be clear: the 27 or 28 terrorist organizations identified by the CIA throughout the world feed on the anger, despair and feeling of injustice felt by hundreds of millions of young people living in poor countries, not to mention all the Timothy McVeighs “made in USA”.

    Therefore, it is not a spirit of vengeance alone that can best prevent a repeat of the terribly sad incident of September 11.

    Moreover, we must refrain, as several have mentioned but it is worth repeating, from engaging into a war of civilization the consequences of which would be incalculable. Already, without bin Laden's responsibility being confirmed, the mere suspicions about him have triggered incidents of a racist nature. Even if bin Laden turns out to be the mastermind behind these acts of terrorism, we should, and I say all the more so, make a clear distinction between Arabs, Muslims who practise a religion based on peace, and the fundamentalist faction, which is hostile to democracy and to which bin Laden belongs.

    I am proud to see that in Quebec the call for tolerance has been heard.

    Finally, one cannot help but think that the dangerous and daring bright mind who devised the September 11 plan may have wanted to provoke the American giant in the hope of triggering a holy war that could in turn generate tremendous support for the soldiers of Allah. This act of provocation would then have achieved its purpose. The United States need allies like Canada, allies that keep a cool head while remaining unwavering in their determination.

  +-(1545)  

[English]

+-

    Mr. Sarkis Assadourian (Brampton Centre, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I too would like to join my colleagues and Canadians from coast to coast to convey my condolences for this terrible act of terrorism which took place last week on September 11 and claimed over 5,000 innocent lives. This is really tragic. I believe this is a higher percentage of casualties than the attack by the Japanese on Pearl Harbor some 55 years ago.

    I have received many messages of condolences from constituents in my riding of Brampton Centre who are very concerned. As a consequence I have a book of condolences in my riding where people can sign their names. They are supporting Canada and other countries that have condemned this act of terrorism.

    I am pleased to report that three firefighters from Brampton have gone to New York to help firefighters there. I was really proud of them when they were on TV. I am sure the House joins me in supporting the Brampton firefighters for their work and showing appreciation for the duties they are performing to save lives in New York.

    My question concerns her comments about the Muslim religion and the fanaticism aspect. I was born in Syria which is a Muslim country. I am the first and only Syrian born member of parliament. I never witnessed discrimination even though I was a Christian living in a Muslim country. To the contrary, we were called Armenian brothers.

    Would my colleague comment on how she approaches the issue of Muslim fanaticism when the Muslim religion calls for peace and co-operation among all religions?

[Translation]

+-

    Ms. Francine Lalonde: Mr. Speaker, I think the member understood my comment about how important it was to remain prudent so as not to drive Muslims or those of Arab origin into the arms of terrorists, those who target democracy and who wish to establish religious regimes everywhere.

    This is why we must also change our foreign policy. I am grateful to Colin Powell, for instance, for having said that the conflict in the Middle East had to be resolved. People must realize the extent to which the unresolved conflict in the Middle East, hundreds of thousands of young Palestinians living either in sealed off territories, or as refugees, provides fertile ground for extremism.

    We must have security measures and, at the same time, know that we ourselves are going to precipitate matters if we do not, on the one hand, pay attention and, on the other, take action to create hope for those not interested in these solutions.

+-

    Mr. Paul Crête (Kamouraska—Rivière-du-Loup—Témiscouata—Les Basques, BQ): Mr. Speaker, I greatly enjoyed the speech by the member for Mercier, particularly the point she made with respect to a well targeted military response, if necessary, in order to get at the terrorists.

    However, I would also like her to elaborate, as she did a bit during her speech, on what Canada's main role as a country should be in this regard.

    Finally, given our history, are we not better equipped to contribute to diplomatic debates and to develop a global anti-terrorist strategy which is not limited to ensuring protection within our borders, to closing our borders, but to finding a way to eradicate terrorism at its source?

    I ask the member for Mercier what she thinks of this position.

  +-(1550)  

+-

    Ms. Francine Lalonde: Mr. Speaker, this is no easy question. I believe that parliament as a whole will have to come up with the answer.

    The answer that comes to my mind, however, is that we in Canada and in Quebec are in a very special situation in that we are the neighbours of the Americans and thus, in a way, liable to be affected by the fallout of this.

    We can, however, take a critical distance from their suffering, while sharing it at the same time. In certain cases, and this is often true of Quebec, our attitude is closer to the European one, less Anglo-Saxon if I may say so.

    I am sorry I cannot go on.

+-

    The Acting Speaker (Mr. Bélair): Unfortunately, the hon. member's time is up. The hon. Minister of National Defence.

[English]

+-

    Hon. Art Eggleton (Minister of National Defence, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I will be splitting my time with the member for Winnipeg South. I join with my colleagues on all sides of the House in expressions of sorrow at the tragic loss of so many lives. Our hearts go out to the families and friends of those who became victims of the terrorist attacks in New York and Washington.

    It is interesting to note that many of the people either confirmed dead or missing came from other countries in the world including Canada. While we do not know yet the numbers, we do know that many Canadians were involved in this tragic event.

    Our condolences also go out to members of the Canadian armed forces who worked with people in the Pentagon. Many of their friends and associates also lost their lives.

    We moved very quickly as the Department of National Defence and the Canadian forces when this event came to our attention. One of the first things that needed to be done was to help in terms of accommodating many people who were on flights destined for the United States that had to be moved into Canadian air space.

    Many of them were in Atlantic Canada and some even as far north and west as Whitehorse. When the planes landed suddenly there were over 30,000 people on the tarmac at airports who needed some assistance.

    The Canadian forces helped to provide blankets and cots. Some of our housing was also made available for these people. The outpouring of support from Canadians to these people showed enormous good will.

    From there we moved toward the area of humanitarian assistance. We took a number of medical and engineering people from our base in Petawawa and repositioned them in Trenton as part of our disaster assistance response team. We had several hundred people on call, ready to provide medical support, engineering support, debris clearing or whatever else was required.

    We also made available three ships with humanitarian supplies which were put on high alert and positioned in the New York area. As it turned out they were not required. There was an outpouring of support from the immediate vicinity of New York and Washington. They felt they were able to handle the situation. I must say that the Pentagon expressed to Canada its deep appreciation for putting these humanitarian assistance personnel on high alert and for making them available. They are still available, if required.

    With regard to our obligations in Norad, we are a partner with the United States in the defence and surveillance of our airspace over the continent. We have made additional CF-18 jet fighters available. They are part of that surveillance.

    We have also engaged in numerous additional activities of intelligence and information sharing with the United States. The incoming chairman of the joint chiefs of staff in a discussion with our chief of defence staff yesterday expressed appreciation for the Canadian involvement at this very crucial stage.

    The word war has been used a lot. It has been used in headlines and it has frightened many people. Those who use it are using it to demonstrate the seriousness by which we must take what has happened. Yes, we must be very serious about it. We must be very focused on the matter of terrorism. We must completely dedicate and commit ourselves to an intensive campaign against terrorism to rid the world of the organization of terrorism that is a threat to our way of life and to our free and democratic society.

  +-(1555)  

    I do not expect this campaign to be run by the conventional method of war. There may be aspects of conventional military operations involved, but ultimately it will take a different kind of effort in terms of weeding out the perpetrators of this violence and in terms of attacking their institutions, infrastructures, organizations, networks and cells which exist in many different countries of the world.

    This will not be a conflict against nations as it is a conflict against terrorism. We have to cut off the money supply. We have to cut off the process of recruitment through which these organizations and cells bring in young people and brainwash them. They become the kind of individuals whom we saw hijack planes and sacrifice their own lives in a suicidal way.

    This will be a different kind of campaign, a different kind of war effort, if we wish to use that word. We need to be solidly there with our allies. It is not something that will be done overnight. As the President of the United States said, it is something that will take a long period of time. He has asked people to have patience. I know it is difficult to have patience when people are looking for quick action. We must with cool heads look at the appropriate action that needs to be taken to carry out this intensive campaign against terrorism.

    There is no immediate threat to Canada that we are able to discern but we cannot be complacent. We must ensure, as the 1994 policy and white paper state, that we protect Canada and Canadians and protect our way of life and our values.

    We do have a counterterrorism plan that comes under the jurisdiction of the solicitor general. The Canadian forces are part of that counterterrorism plan as are many other government departments and agencies at this level and at all levels.

    We have a tactical unit called JTF2, joint task force two, which is a counterterrorism unit in the Canadian forces. We also have a response capability on weapons of mass destruction relating to chemical or biological agents. We have the intelligence services, the information gathering and analysis services that we provide together with our allies. These are all areas that are now part of any counterterrorism plan.

    There is a new organization that we established this year called the Office of Critical Infrastructure Protection and Emergency Preparedness which succeeded the old emergency measures organization. It is working in close contact with the federal emergency authority in the United States to help ensure that resources will be available if need be.

    Security for Canadians is first and foremost working with our colleagues. Working with the United States in the defence of our continent is also part of our mission, as is contributing to international peace and security.

    In that context we stand with our NATO allies who have indicated a willingness to invoke article 5, that an attack on one is an attack on all. We have to all stand together. We need to be consulted and be a part of the development of the plan that the United States is working on now, that we are all working on now.

    At the end of the day we will provide the kind of resources that will be necessary so that Canada can take a very clear and frontline role in helping in this intensive campaign against terrorism.

    We have very professional and dedicated people in the Canadian forces who are ready to be a part of that campaign effort. We have to be united in our resolve with the United States and our NATO allies. We need to stand by them and we need to work with every ounce of energy we have to fight terrorism in the world.

  +-(1600)  

+-

    Mr. Jason Kenney (Calgary Southeast, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, I must say that I was somewhat disturbed to hear both in the minister's speech and in question period his statement that it is not likely to be a conventional war which we are facing. I do not know how the minister divines that. As he said in his latter statement, I presume it is because it is not going to be a conflict against nations but against terrorists and individuals.

    However, this is in direct contradiction to the basic premise of this conflict as outlined by the president of the United States a week ago tomorrow when he said that no distinction will be made between nations that harbour or sponsor terrorists and the terrorists themselves. It is the policy of the United States in this matter that those countries, nations or states that harbour and sponsor terrorists are to be regarded as culpable as the terrorists themselves. That to me implies the very real possibility if not the likelihood of direct conventional warfare against one or more states should they continue to harbour and sponsor terrorist networks.

    That leads me to this question. With the second lowest defence commitment in NATO, a defence commitment which is less than half of the average expenditure in NATO, 2% of GDP, how can Canada pretend to expect to meet the kinds of commitments we may be called upon by our allies to make?

+-

    Hon. Art Eggleton: Mr. Speaker, I repeat what I have said. Ultimately this campaign against terrorism is going to be won by means other than just conventional warfare. There may be some aspects of conventional warfare involved with this. There is no doubt that those who perpetrate this terrorism need to be found out and brought to justice, as well as those who harbour them. I agree with those words from the president of the United States.

    However, the president has also indicated, as have many others, that this is not the same kind of conflict or war that we have experienced in the past. I think we have to be clear that this is going to take a very special kind of effort, with special resources and perhaps special people as part of the entire effort.

    As for resources, for the last three years the government has been putting additional resources into the Canadian forces. Some $3 billion of additional money has been put into the forces. We have made it clear in the House and in throne speeches that we will make sure the Canadian forces gets the resources it needs to do the job. If the job is clearly going to be part of this counterterrorism campaign, and it is, as has been stated quite clearly, then we will have to ensure that the forces gets the resources it needs to do the job.

[Translation]

+-

    Mr. Benoît Sauvageau (Repentigny, BQ): Mr. Speaker, I too wish to offer sincere condolences, on behalf of myself and all the people in the riding of Repentigny, to the family and friends of the victims of the horrible terrorist attacks on New York and Washington. I also wish to add my voice to those calling for justice, speaking out against these terrible crimes, and wishing to see the guilty punished.

    I do, however, hope that reflection and wisdom will be used in the reprisals. What is involved is not simple revenge against a people or a religion, but rather against terrorism. That is what the new faceless enemy is, one that knows no boundaries. A new kind of reprisal is required for a new kind of enemy, an enemy that is not a state but a state of mind.

    Given that these terrorist attacks were committed by people who, if they lack a reason to live, have a number of reasons to die for their cause, I wish to ask the following question of the minister.

    Do the Canadian government and the minister intend to attack the evil at its roots, in other words the inequalities of this world, and more specifically the poverty that exists in the world?

  +-(1605)  

[English]

+-

    Hon. Art Eggleton: I think it is a valid comment and a valid question, and yes, we have to look at many different aspects of this. What is it that attracts these young people to join these terrorist organizations, to sacrifice their lives and to become people who so hate our society or hate the United States? We have to look at this thing from top to bottom. We have to come to grips with a number of issues. I think there is a will and a determination to do all of that.

+-

    Mr. Reg Alcock (Winnipeg South, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, let me begin by adding my words to those of so many others and expressing condolences to the families and friends of those who lost their lives in the atrocities last week and to those who are continuing to struggle but may well die.

    Last Tuesday was one of those days that will rest in our memories like few others. When we first heard about it and first saw the image of those buildings being attacked in that way will always be imprinted in our memory. There is an incredible numbness that comes out of the horror of an act like this is that is so huge and incomprehensible. Along with that there is fear and a desire to protect ourselves, a desire to not let people do this to us. There is also anger and a desire to strike out and get them, to get hold of them and punish them for what they did.

    We are at war, but if we are at war it is not like any war we here have known before. It is not a war that we will watch on television like we did with the gulf war. It is not a war that is fought thousands of miles away, like the ones my parents experienced. It is a war where we are on the front lines. It is a war that will be fought in our airports, our schools, our communities and our shopping centres. We will experience something that others in other parts of the world have experienced already.

    If it is a war, we have to win it. We cannot allow terrorists to win, who win by being free to do what they have done, but who also win if we sacrifice our lifestyle, if we give up our values and if we change who we are in order to protect ourselves from them. We must extract the price from them.

    We also lose this war if we become like them. If we start to do what they do, not following the rule of law, not acting in accordance with our values and not looking for a way to solve whatever it is that is driving this, then we are in danger of becoming little better. We cannot adopt their techniques or tactics to solve this problem.

    I have thought hard about this, as we all have. I have a huge faith in our public service and the government and the ability to do everything we can to bring solutions to each of the many little problems such as how our transportation system works or our border crossings, all of those kinds of things I have heard debated and discussed in the House today. I am sure that this debate will go on for a very long time.

    I have also thought hard about an area that I spend a lot of time thinking about, which is information and communication technologies, the kind of framework or nervous system that globalization rides on. It is the connectedness that has allowed us to build a worldwide trading system and to connect with each other in ways that we never have before. It has also created the freedom of movement and some of the porousness that have put us at risk in this most recent circumstance.

    Within that there are some areas we need to look at too. There are ways in which these tools and these networks can be used to better identify people and to track and follow people we are concerned about. However, there is a tradeoff here. It is a tradeoff between our individual privacy and our community's need to know.

    This is a debate that the House needs to get engaged in. I do not know what the solution is. I do not know where the boundaries are, but I have a sense that in our desire to protect ourselves we have some tools here that will allow us to better understand what is happening and to better harden up our defences. However, we will be giving up something also.

    I am a little disheartened at the rush by some. I saw Newt Gingrich on the TV last night talking about this being the time to get civil libertarians. However, I was also pleased that I did not see Colin Powell or Rumsfeld or the others buying into that argument. I think Newt Gingrich remains on the fringe. I know we will hear his theme, but I hope it does not become a central one.

  +-(1610)  

    There is something else here. I was trying to remember back to the spring when a round of suicide bombings started to take place in Israel. A young Palestinian man took a bomb into a crowd, but I forget the details, which is frightening in itself. We become so used to it that these things just sort of go away.

    The young Palestinian exploded a bomb. He killed himself and some innocent people who happened to be in the wrong place at the wrong time. In the aftermath of the bombing his father was interviewed in Palestine. The father talked about how proud he was of his son. I thought about how twisted up a person has to be inside to be proud of one's child killing himself and killing innocent people. We need to understand that too. We need to understand that and what is behind and underneath it.

    I am sure we will get a hold of Osama bin Laden and others, but that is not the solution. It is part of the solution, but it will not end this. Everybody who has been talking about this in the last few days has remained fixed on this problem and has made that point over and over again. We have to understand and address what is underneath this if we are to have the peaceful society that we want.

    I was pleased today when listening to the debate and the speeches by members from all sides of the House. I was pleased to hear that we were talking not just about hardening up but also about understanding and trying to deal with this in a responsible fashion.

    I was pleased with the Prime Minister's speech. I will end by quoting something he said which I think is just so important. He said that our actions will be ruled by resolve, but not fear.

    He said that if laws need to be changed they will be. If security has to be increased to protect Canadians it will be. We will remain vigilant, but we will not give in to the temptation, in a rush to increase security, to undermine the values that we cherish and which have made Canada a beacon of hope, freedom and tolerance to the world. We will not be stampeded in the hope, vain and ultimately self-defeating, that we can make Canada a fortress against the world.

    We have created something here that is beautiful and that shows how people can get along. Hopefully we can be part of the solution to this problem.

+-

    Mr. Myron Thompson (Wild Rose, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, I would like to address the hon. member's remarks and say that I appreciate what he had to say in terms of his sympathy toward the victims of this horrific event. I thank him for that.

    I want to get down to some reality. As the hon. member and you, Mr. Speaker, may know, I have a son in the United States army. He is sergeant of a military unit. I talked to my son by phone at length last night. The army is on full high alert, which means that in a matter of minutes the army could be on its way to any destination anywhere, even in its own land, with the full backing of all resources, equipment and everything necessary to carry out a mission of almost any type. The army is ready, competent and willing.

    His mother and I are on pins and needles. He is our son. Could Canadian parents have the same confidence in their military that I have in regard to what is going on in the United States in preparing these young people for an event which none of us want to see happen, but which very well might likely happen under the circumstances? Can Canadian parents rest at ease that their soldiers, their sailors, their boys and girls, will be safe in their duties they may be required to perform?

  +-(1615)  

+-

    Mr. Reg Alcock: Mr. Speaker, I can imagine how worrisome that is for the hon. member and his family. As it is, when we talk about going to war most of us are at an age where we would not normally be drafted or brought into a war. We really are talking about whether we are willing to spend the lives of our children. I think that Canadians are saying they are willing to do whatever is necessary to stop this.

    Is the Canadian army as big, strong, fast and powerful as the army of the largest country in the world, the richest country in the world, a country ten times our size? No, it is not.

    However, is it sharp? Is it equipped? Is it smart? Can it do the job it is called upon to do? Yes, I am confident it can.

+-

    Mr. Peter MacKay (Pictou—Antigonish—Guysborough, PC/DR): Mr. Speaker, I would also like to congratulate the hon. member for Winnipeg South for his sincere commentary and the previous speaker in this debate, the Minister of National Defence, for informing the House on some of the steps the Canadian military has taken in response to this tragedy and his congratulatory note for those volunteers in Canada, particularly those people in Halifax, Nova Scotia who opened their hearts and homes to travellers from the United States and across the world who were diverted to our port.

    I have some very quick questions for the hon. member. With respect to resources and the reaction of the Canadian armed forces, we know that the American forces have called up 50,000 reservists, ironically almost the total number of those in our armed forces. Will there be a similar involvement of Canadian reservists? This question is directed to the Minister of National Defence.

    As well, I would remind the hon. member that there are other outstanding issues of readiness which we have to deal with. One of those is the outstanding issue of the helicopter procurement project which is yet to be resolved.

    Finally, with respect to those who are interested in volunteering for the Canadian armed forces, will they be--

+-

    The Acting Speaker (Mr. Bélair): The hon. member for Winnipeg South.

+-

    Mr. Reg Alcock: Mr. Speaker, obviously I am not going to attempt to answer the question that was directed to the Minister of National Defence.

    It is unfortunate if we allow this debate to slip back into a bunch of debates which we will have in the normal course of business because this is a very different situation. We will do what needs to be done in whatever way we are asked to and are able to serve. We will not put people in harm's way without the resources or the equipment they need.

    I will end with one thing. It is from the Prime Minister's speech. I do not often do this but I was quite taken by some of the things he said today. He said that we have never been a bystander in the struggle for justice in the world, that we will stand with Americans, as neighbours, as friends, as family, that we will stand with our allies and that we will do what we must to defeat terrorism. He also said to let our actions be guided by a spirit of wisdom and perseverance, by our values and our way of life.

*   *   *

+-Business of the House

[Business of the House]
+-

    Hon. Don Boudria (Leader of the Government in the House of Commons, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, a number of members have indicated their enthusiasm in participating in this debate. If the House is willing to consider it, I would like to extend the hours tonight by offering the following motion:

    That the House shall sit until 10 p.m. this day to consider government orders, government business No. 10.

+-

    The Acting Speaker (Mr. Bélair): Is it the pleasure of the House to adopt the motion?

    Some hon. members: Agreed.

    (Motion agreed to)

  +-(1620)  

+-

    Mr. Jay Hill: Mr. Speaker, would you seek unanimous consent, in the spirit of co-operation, for the debate tonight to be considered the same as report stage with 10 minute speeches and no questions or comments in order that the maximum number of speakers could get up between now and 10 p.m.?

+-

    The Acting Speaker (Mr. Bélair): Is there consent?

    Some hon. members: Agreed.

    Some hon. members: No.

*   *   *

+-Attack on the United States

    The House resumed consideration of the motion.

+-

    Mr. Leon Benoit (Lakeland, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, I will be sharing my time with another member of the Alliance and all future speakers will do the same.

    Ace Bailey went to work on Tuesday morning as usual. He boarded an airplane to perform his duties as a scout in the great Canadian game of hockey. In fact, he was an NHL scout.

    Ace Bailey was born and raised in Lloydminster, the same town that I was raised in. In fact, he was two years older than me. He had an NHL career, including one year with the greatest team hockey ever had, the Edmonton Oilers. He was proud of that, his family was proud of that and so was the city of Lloydminster.

    Ace Bailey was on the second plane that was seized by terrorists and flown into the second tower of the World Trade Center. He died in that terrible act of terrorism.

    I would like to take this opportunity to offer my sincere condolences and prayers to the family and friends of Ace Bailey as they mourn their great loss.

    For those Canadians who are still missing from the attack on the World Trade Center and for those whose lives have been silenced by this act of cruelty, I promise that we will learn from these losses. We will not forget the messages of last Tuesday's attack. We must not. We will make this world a safer place for their children and we will reaffirm the spirit of democracy and freedom in this country and in the free world.

    I would also like to say that I admire the people of New York. We heard stories and saw images on television of people helping friends from the office buildings, even though they thought there might be a bomb or some kind of attack. They were helping an acquaintance or a fellow worker get out of the building in very dangerous circumstances. These acts of heroism will never be forgotten by any of us.

    I admire the acts of heroism on the part of the police and firemen. As I watched the images on TV, they had to have known the tower was going to collapse, particularly after the first one did. We have to admire people who would behave like this in that kind of situation, and I do.

    I admire the incredible acts of heroism by the people aboard the fourth plane. They phoned home to say goodbye and to say that they loved their husbands or their wives and their children. Then they went on to say that they would do what they could to stop the terrorists from hitting another target. We will never know the real story of what went on in that airplane, but it is absolutely admirable and touching to think of what they did.

    We saw the very best of the human race last Tuesday, which followed the very worst.

    Now we have to get on with the business of government and the business of running this country.

    Today's business is the safety and security of the citizens of this country. As the senior defence critic, it is my responsibility to ask those tough questions and to point out the weaknesses that I see in Canada's national defence and I will carry out that responsibility.

    The Canadian Alliance was elected as the Official Opposition to do that, to hold the government accountable and to offer positive alternatives. I will do that in this debate.

    I would like to start by reminding people of what our national defence, the Canadian forces, provide.

  +-(1625)  

    First, they provide a force to deal with any civil unrest which may occur. They provide search and rescue for people in desperate need. They provide disaster relief, like in the ice storm and in the various floods that we had. They are there to protect our sovereignty, particularly in the northern waters, so we can identify this land clearly as Canadian land and others cannot claim the property.

    They must meet Canada's commitments to NATO, NORAD, to our great alliances and to the United Nations. That is what Canadians expect from our forces.

    The 2000 public report from CSIS said that Canada's increasing military and political roles in world events had augmented this country's visibility as had involvement in military actions against Iraq and Kosovo.

    The CSIS report is saying that because we have become directly involved in military action, we are far more likely to be the victims of terrorist attacks then we were before. Therefore, it is that much more important that we are prepared, capable and willing to meet our commitments.

    I want to talk first about our NATO commitments. Can Canada meet its military commitments to NATO? The issue is extremely important because of this great alliance and the security of our nation and our people. It is also extremely important due to economic implications, which are important as well.

    I would argue that Canada has foreign affairs and military commitments well beyond its size. That is demonstrated with our membership in the G-8. Much beyond the size and population of the country, we have a military and a foreign affairs obligation beyond that size.

    These are the questions I want to ask to the Minister of National Defence and the government. Where will Canada get the people and the equipment to fulfill our obligations to our NATO allies? If there is a NATO strike against terrorist groups involved in the attacks in New York and Washington, will the Canadian contribution be mostly symbolic?

    When I listened to the Minister of National Defence as he made his statement and answered questions just before this presentation, I was disturbed by two things.

    First, he said that it was highly unlikely that there would be a traditional NATO attack. It was almost as though through wishful thinking he could avoid having to meet the commitment to our NATO allies. Sadly it is most likely that there will be a traditional attack and that we will be asked for military personnel and equipment to meet our obligations. Wishful thinking is not going to work here.

    Second, I was concerned when the minister said that we pretty much had what we needed. I would be quite happy to hear him say that we were short, that we had not committed enough to the security of our nation through the Department of National Defence so we could move on and together build a strong national defence. That is what I was hoping to hear from the minister. Unfortunately, that did not happen.

    These tough questions must be asked.

    I would like to point out what happened two weeks ago. Canada was asked by NATO to make a commitment to Macedonia. Canada could not meet the commitment, so it took about 200 of our people out of one NATO commitment in Bosnia to meet our commitment in Macedonia, another NATO commitment. That is like paying one credit card account off with another credit card to keep from declaring bankruptcy.

    We have a serious problem. Now that we have come down to the crunch, Canadians have the right to know that their security and safety here at home and their military commitments abroad can be met by the government. It is extremely important that over the next few weeks the government and the Minister of National Defence explain in some detail exactly how Canada is going to meet that commitment.

  +-(1630)  

    I want to close by saying one thing. Now is the time for unity, determination and resolve and we must aim that determination and resolve at those people who have committed this heinous act. Let us make sure that we offer our support, our love, our prayers and our friendship, particularly to members of the Muslim and the Arab communities who right now really need that kind of support.

+-

    Mr. Peter Adams (Peterborough, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I listened with interest to what my colleague had to say. I disagree with some of the things he said but I did appreciate his tone. I would like to ask him a question.

    Like the rest of us, I am sure he has been receiving phone calls, has had conversations on the streets in his riding and has received e-mails from all sorts of people. Some people are very angry but I suspect many of those people are as afraid and worried as most people are about what will happen to them and their families.

    People have telephoned me concerning human rights and about ethnic groups in Canada. They are concerned about the women and children overseas. One group, in an extraordinary response, has been conducting a vigil once a week all summer outside my riding office against the sanctions in Iraq . They, with great courage, have appeared before my office once again.

    Faced with this range of people and all their concerns, what is he, as a member of parliament, saying to the individuals in his constituency who are afraid, angry or whatever, as a result of this conflict?

+-

    Mr. Leon Benoit: Mr. Speaker, I have heard those things but most calls to me by far have been from people expressing their concern that our military will not be able to meet its obligations and will not be able to provide security in this country should we have a similar disaster here at home. They are afraid. They want the assurance that the protection and security that comes from the armed forces, which is our largest security body in the country, will be there. They are concerned that the numbers in our forces have dropped from 90,000 to 55,000 and still on their way down. They are concerned that the one place the government has cut spending is 30% for military spending. They know we cannot make those cuts and still meet the security needs and expectations of Canadians. They know we need better equipment when we send our men and women over into very difficult situations.

    That is what I am hearing from the people in my constituency. They are extremely concerned about those things.

    Because of the time and the type of situation we are in perhaps I have not said what I would really like to say if I were to vent my spleen because I am frustrated, but what I will say is that those are good questions and I will ask the Minister of National Defence those questions on the hon. member's behalf.

+-

    Mr. Kevin Sorenson (Crowfoot, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, my question is for the critic for defence.

    We just heard a speech by our Minister of National Defence previous to the hon. member's speech. In that speech, he waxed eloquently about the word war. He talked about not wanting to use the word war. He said that it conjures up fear and that individuals do not want to talk about something that they do not understand. He then went on to talk about the way this war would be waged.

    We have heard about the war against poverty, the war against drugs and the war against all the other things that are being tagged as being a war. However he made it very clear that conventional warfare was not the main thing.

    In the paper today, General MacKenzie says that we are ill-equipped for war.

    I would like to ask the defence critic how our military has gone as far as funding and levels over the past 10 years?

  +-(1635)  

+-

    Mr. Leon Benoit: Mr. Speaker, that is an excellent question and a question that people are very concerned about. I have already talked about numbers; down from 90,000 to 50,000 in the last 9 years and dropping; funding down 30% in real terms from 9 years ago; equipment mostly in a state of serious disrepair.

    General MacKenzie certainly is one individual I respect and I respect what he says on defence issues. However we could go through the list of former top military people and military think tanks and each one of them will say exactly the same thing, which is my concern, that this is widely known to be a problem and it has been pointed out over the last eight years. We have to deal with it now.

+-

    Mr. Paul Forseth (New Westminster—Coquitlam—Burnaby, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, I rise today on behalf of my constituents of New Westminster--Coquitlam--Burnaby and all freedom loving people to extend the deepest heart felt condolences to the many Americans, Canadians, British and others who are direct or indirect victims.

    I concur with the motion before the House that states:

    That this House express its sorrow and horror at the senseless and vicious attack on the United States of America on September 11, 2001;

    That it express its heartfelt condolences to the families of the victims and to the American people;

    That it reaffirm its commitment to the humane values of a free and democratic society and its determination to bring to justice the perpetrators of this attack on these values and to defend civilization from any future terrorist attacks.

    Freedom will always have to be defended from senseless acts of terrorism or in the face of the complacent.

    As Canadians watched in horror and tried to understand the incomprehensible, I find it difficult not to think of the possible Canadian connection. Indications may or may not be valid but regardless, the fact that Canadian law and administration continues to allow non-Canadians with terrorist ties to reside in Canada is just not acceptable.

    Canadians find it bewildering that CSIS, the RCMP, the Canadian media and even U.S. TV networks have reported for years about the ease in which criminals can gain access to our country due to our insufficient federal institutional protections. Change begins with the recognition that a problem exists.

    Canadians want the government to admit that it has a problem so we can get to work. Instead of the Prime Minister saying this week that no improvements are anticipated and the immigration minister claiming that Canada is okay, Canadians want some contrition at this time from the cabinet about its misplaced priorities on security.

    Canadians have cause to be angry over the culpability of the Liberal government for the historically poor administration of national security. Problems with Canada's immigration system policies are well known. There is an historical pattern of reports from our loyal public employees about Canada being either a haven for terrorist operations, a place where they raise funds or a place to be used as a gateway to the United States.

    It is a matter of longstanding public record that whenever it is an issue of enforcement per se, whether it is ports' police providing higher levels of security training and manpower to customs' border guards, appropriate levels of military personnel or providing people with the resources and technology to airport security, the Liberals have squeezed and starved this whole line of resourcing.

    The government needs to admit that all along our party in the House has been correct on these matters over the years and the government has been wrong. My constituents want to know what the minister of immigration's plan of action is beyond just implementing Bill C-11 next year. We need many people at every level to deal with what mainly is at this point a people security problem.

    On December 31, 1997, there was a legislative review report published called “Not Just Numbers: A Canadian Framework for Future Immigration” that was presented to the former immigration minister. After much discussion and caving into the advocates in the immigration industry, the Liberals took an agonizing three years, until February 21, 2001, to bring forward the compromise Bill C-11 that was passed in the House of Commons on June 13 and is now in the Senate.

    Bill C-11 does appear to partially tighten up procedure but the overall resourcing shortfall of manpower in the immigration ministry today remains a scandal. Consequently, public confidence in the Liberals to manage the nation's affairs or to run a well managed immigration system in all its complexity is far below public expectation.

    It is well known that much could be reasonably accomplished if there were the appropriate political will for governance. The Liberals have never had the needed ideological grounding in accountability or in orientation to manage according to the public will.

    The current state of affairs with the system is another testimony to that record, that the Liberals are not competent to govern. The world may not be more dangerous now than it was last week but we certainly have proof from Tuesday's events that it is a much more dangerous world than the Liberals have been willing to admit.

  +-(1640)  

    The increased international flow of goods, capital and labour makes it easier than ever before for terrorists to create links, set up bases in key locations and raise money in places like Canada for their offences.

    It is amazing that people can arrive on Canadian soil and claim refugee status here in Canada, yet roam free for years. Most claimants are just released into our communities to do as they will for lengthy waits for their refugee hearings. Then there are insufficient resources to verify the stories of these surprise arrivals from their claimed countries of origin. Further, even if they are unsuccessful claimants, they can appeal for up to about seven years before the system deports them, most living free in our society to be or not to be law-abiding. Moreover, thousands of claimants just disappear once they are released into our communities as that was their planned method to sneak in.

    Given the weakness of our current procedures, we can only say that we are lucky so far that crime has not been worse.

    It is time for the government to get real, stop its denials, stop the defence of name calling put downs against the official opposition and just re-allocate personnel resourcing.

    Most countries that accept refugees accept about 10% to 15% of claims but we are so inadequate in our background checks that we accept about 50% or even more. It is no surprise then that CSIS says that most of the world's terrorist groups have established themselves in Canada for operations. The Canadian Security Intelligence Service has a mandate to monitor threats to Canada. On June 12, it said:

    Terrorism in the years ahead is expected to become more violent, indiscriminate and unpredictable...There will likely be terrorist attacks whose sole aim would be to incite terror itself...Canada a potential venue, for terrorists attacks.

    The auditor general gave another wake up call in April 2000 saying:

    Visa officers feel they are not only going against their own values, but also making decisions that could carry risks that are too high, and that could entail significant cost for Canadian society.

    In response, the government remained complacent and thereby, by definition, perhaps complicit.

    Some people coming into Canada found that the way the system is presently designed it allows them to perform their own malevolent goals. Without sufficient incentive to comply with removal orders or reporting conditions, arrivals will continue to stay on and become lost in the system. People smugglers bring their victims with little fear of prosecution.

    Sadly, by the turn of events this week, we are reminded again of the need for the systems to act more promptly and with much greater care for the public safety. The courage to act requires a much better allocation of human and financial resources and the best available information systems for protection and enforcement. Without these pragmatics the best speeches by the government today will never be effective or save us from any tragedy.

    Dealing with the volume of arrivals and sorting them out, it is a very intensive people business. To more effectively cope with these realities, it is reasonable to do two things. Properly resource the agencies whose practitioners at the line level have been begging for relief. Give the needed trained personnel and also harden the entry points to reduce the swamping of our system.

    One of the flaws in Canadian politics is the traditional difficulty in just mentioning immigration, refugees, border controls and so on. The censorship practised by the finger pointers and name callers against my party hurts the whole country. Nevertheless I will not relent but I will say that in our party we firmly believe that the government must give account for the way security programs are met.

    September 11, 2001, will be remembered forever. The attack upon the United States changes how we think of the world. Civilization has been attacked and freedom everywhere has been hurt. Our prayers will continue with the victims and their families.

    I end my remarks by saying that we in the official opposition of the Canadian parliament offer our Prime Minister assistance to do what we can, for this week's tragedy is of international scope. I have expressed our concern and support to the U.S. embassy and we send our condolences to the American people. I am also mindful that there are Canadians and other nationalities who perished in the attack. While our hearts are broken in this time of grief, I will do my duty to serve to protect what is good and fulfil my part to preserve peace and order.

    Technology and the machines of war can neither detect nor eradicate the hatred in the heart of a radical. Anyone willing to commit suicide as a martyr for their evil idea is a potentially more dangerous than the most sophisticated weaponry.

  +-(1645)  

    We have looked into the face of evil. It is an idea clothed in pride. It will be overcome by revelation clothed in love. Our only long term hope for peace and an end to fanaticism are changed hearts through faith in the redemptive love of God.

+-

    Mr. Alex Shepherd (Durham, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I listened intently to the member for New Westminster--Coquitlam--Burnaby.

    I would like to add the voice of the people of Durham regarding this tragedy. They have told me in no uncertain terms about the great loss of what they feel are some of their freedoms that they have taken for granted over the years, the civil liberties that we have all taken for granted. It has been a great tragedy. We hope to support actions that would eradicate terrorism in the future.

    The member went on at length about the immigration policy. I would like to indicate that the landed immigrants who live in my riding are all genuinely hardworking good people. They contribute to their neighbours and neighbourhoods.

    One of the things that concerns me as a member of parliament is that I am getting calls from people who are concerned about their own civil liberties because they may be from an ethnic group that is identifiable.

    The member went on at length. He talked about and seemed to know that there are identifiable terrorist groups working in Canada. Since he has the protection of the House, could he stand and identify who and where those terrorist groups are?

+-

    Mr. Paul Forseth: Mr. Speaker, for a moment I thought the member was going to make the mistake to which I was referring about the kind of political correctness and almost censorship of being able to talk about certain topics, just because we mentioned the issue of the pleas from the practitioners within the immigration department for their lack of resources to deliver on their current mandate, let alone any new mandate. Of course we encourage immigration but we want also in that process to make sure that the security needs of the country are met.

    If the member wants to know who those groups are, he just has to read one of the many CSIS reports. CSIS has listed over 50 groups in the country.

+-

    Mr. Bill Blaikie (Winnipeg—Transcona, NDP): Mr. Speaker, I listened to the hon. member. He talked about the way that security services at airports had been run down as a result of privatization. He talked about the shortage of manpower in immigration, et cetera.

    It strikes me as ironic. I am not trying to pick a fight. I am asking that he and his colleagues think about the way in which they might have contributed to these kinds of things.

    When the airports were being privatized, did they say boo about privatization of airports? There were a lot of people who had those concerns but I think it was something that was a bit of an ideological fad at the time and maybe needs to be reconsidered by the government and by some who either supported it or were silent at the time.

    It is the same with the lack of staff at immigration. I remember a time when it was politically popular to say that there were too many civil servants and that the civil service was too big.

    If there is a need for people to do something, whether it is in security, immigration or whatever, then let us identify the need and hire the people. Let us not be reticent as a result of whatever philosophical objections we might have about government or the public sector. That is all I have to say.

  +-(1650)  

+-

    Mr. Paul Forseth: Mr. Speaker, the member must know that the general program of the government to privatize airports has absolutely nothing to do with focussed security for which customs officers have been asking.

    I would support the union in that regard when it cannot get a proper response from the ordinary chain of accountability within the ministry. The union has also looked at its concerns about underresourcing and lack of training for customs officers.

    I am talking about the needs of the practitioners charged with that responsibility. For years they have given advice and warnings yet the government has been very complacent. That is the issue I bring to the floor of the House today.

+-

    Mr. Larry Bagnell (Yukon, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I will be splitting my time with my colleague from York West.

    As most members are aware, when the attack was made on Washington I was standing very near the Capitol building. It was certainly grim to be in the centre of an attack on the symbols of our democracy, our liberty and our freedom. It was not an attack on the U.S.A.; it was an attack on the entire free world because in those buildings were people from many religions, many cultures and over 40 countries.

    In Canada the ramifications spread to the farthest riding in the Yukon, which is mine. In Whitehorse a Korean Airlines plane escorted by military jets landed and they were not sure if it was hijacked and there was a lot of commotion and fear. I would like to thank those people of the Yukon who helped ease that situation.

    I would also like to thank the Gwich'in people who were in Washington with me, the farthest community from this House, fighting for their survival, ironically as we are now all fighting for our survival. I want to thank all of the people who supported us in Washington and New York. I want to thank the survivors of the people on the last plane who may have diverted it from crashing into the buildings we were in.

    I also want to thank and commend the courageous firefighters and police of New York. I also take this opportunity to extend that thanks to firefighters and police in Canada and around the world because they put their lives forward daily for our safety.

    When we came back on the bus from Washington I was never so happy to see the Peace Tower standing strong. We should never begrudge our contributions toward our symbols of freedom and liberty. They are so important. However, even if the Parliament Buildings had been levelled, the terrorists would not win because liberty and freedom live in the hearts of Canadians. They will never take that away.

    Our motion today has three components.

    The first one is sympathy and condolences. I do not think we need to say much more on that. Thousands of Canadians came to this building and signed the condolence book on the weekend, Canadians from the capitals, from Whitehorse, and various communities. I left my office here after midnight for the last three nights and every night there were people at the Eternal Flame in front of this building showing their respect for Americans.

    It was an incredible scene at the American embassy, one which I will probably never see again. For the entire block the fence was covered with flowers, condolence messages and teddy bears. I estimated that there was over 15,000 bouquets. That is an incredible sign of support for our American friends.

    I was so proud to be a Canadian and to be representing a country with so much compassion when I came out of the Parliament Buildings last Friday and saw on short notice 100,000 Canadians showing their compassion. For those of our American friends who want to know, it is the largest group I have ever seen on Parliament Hill.

    The second part of our motion is related to catching the perpetrators. We have just witnessed 5,000 murders. It is inconceivable that we would ever use any less intensity to catch the perpetrators of those 5,000 murders than we use every day to catch the perpetrators of a single murder. Just as they use technology against us, we will use technology in catching them. That is one of the great strengths Canada can add. It is an advanced technological nation.

    As one of my constituents wanted me to emphasize, and as has been stated before, our attack against the perpetrators is not an attack against any nation, any religion, any culture. It is only against a few dozen heinous criminals and terrorists.

    Human beings, as rational as they are, can be over-affected by emotion. It can cloud their objectivity. Another strength that Canada can offer at this time is to help keep our friends in America on track as we chase the perpetrators so that there is as little threat as possible to innocent people or any other collateral damage.

    When we crossed the border on the way back on the bus, it was very moving as people clapped to be back in the safety of Canada. However, the whole world is in fear because when people in the tallest buildings in the world in the most powerful nation in the world with the greatest military strength in the world can be made victims, then we can all be victims.

  +-(1655)  

    That is why the third and last part of the motion is the most important and most difficult: making the world safe for civilization.

    As in any crime, catching the perpetrator is only the first half of the solution, because any crime is a symptom of conditions that will generate more terrorists and more acts of terrorism. We cannot overly criticize the intelligence systems in Canada and the United States. Obviously we have to make improvements in those systems. However, we live in a free nation and we refuse to give up those freedoms and civil liberties. In a free nation it is technically, physically and economically impossible to surround with military troops every vehicle, every building and every person. Our war has to be on the breeding grounds of terrorism so we remove the reasons that are so powerful that people would give up their lives to wreak this havoc and horror on other adults.

    Do we enter this war on terrorism when it is said that Canada loves peace? That peace has been shattered by this act of carnage. What about the notes from the children at the American embassy that are fearful but want peace? That peace has been broken. I believe it is our responsibility to fight to get that peace back for those children and for their children.

    What other option do we have? What if we do not engage the enemy? Do we just assume that the terrorists who have killed hundreds of Canadians on Canadian soil and on Canadian property over the last 30 years will just go away? I did not see a note after this event saying that they would not do this any more.

    The knives, the weapons of terrorists for centuries gone by, have been replaced by the weapons of mass destruction by modern terrorists. It will not get any better. Those weapons will get more horrendous. As Winston Churchill said, “We do not have a week, we do not have a day, we do not have an hour to waste in engaging in a war on terrorism and the root causes of terrorism”.

    This will be a difficult and courageous decision for Canadians, because courage has a cost. In retaliation it could be the cost of Canadian blood at home and abroad. It is an excruciating decision for Canadians, because they are making it not only for themselves but for their children. Five thousand people died this time. How many people will die next time if we do nothing?

    If anyone in the House is weakening in their resolve to engage in the battle against terrorism, I just want to imagine them going home to their riding tonight, sitting down to a dinner and thinking of thousands of other people with dining tables in their communities that are missing a person.

    America, we are with you, because this was the slaughter of innocent secretaries and office workers, mothers and fathers, sons and daughters whose only crime was to choose to live and work in a free country, a country that loves freedom, democracy and liberty as much as we do.

  +-(1700)  

+-

    Mrs. Betty Hinton (Kamloops, Thompson and Highland Valleys, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, I would like to add the condolences of my constituency of Kamloops, Thompson and Highland Valleys to all the people who have suffered so much in the last week.

    I have listened carefully to the discussions today and have been able to agree with a lot of points that were made. There are also points that I do not agree with.

    I have lost both parents, a sister and a child, so tragedy is no stranger to me. However what I have found happening in the last week is something that gives me courage. The worst of circumstances often bring out the best in people. We have seen evidence of that all across the country. That is heartening.

    What I find disturbing in the House today is the confusion that seems to surround what is going on here. I have heard colleagues from the Bloc, the NDP and the government say that children being hungry is part of the problem.

    The catalyst for hunger is war and the struggle for power, not the other way around. There are fanatical groups in the world who have taken it upon themselves to do whatever is necessary to bring their point of view across. As a result we have hungry people, but let us not confuse hungry people with the cause of their hunger. The cause of hunger is power and war, and that is what we must stop. We must do something about it in the House today.

    We know that there are 50 terrorist groups operating in Canada. That is not finger pointing; that is fact. To take control over what happens in our nation and to our friends in other nations, we must put controls on that. I am hoping that as a House we will work together to make the necessary changes.

    My colleague is the only member of the Muslim faith in the House. He has called for what I would call for: tolerance and respect for other people's religions. This has nothing to do with the Muslim religion; it has everything to do with the fanatical fringe. We must bear that in mind as we make these deliberations. We must make the changes that are needed to restore the sense of security of ourselves and of our nation. We need to defend what is dear to us. It is my supreme hope that we are able to do that as a team in the House.

+-

    Mr. Jay Hill (Prince George—Peace River, PC/DR): Mr. Speaker, I commend my hon. colleague from Yukon for his remarks today. In representing the people of Prince George--Peace River I know from countless conversations and correspondence, either electronically or by mail, that they are expressing deep sorrow and concern about the tragedy that took place in the United States. I would like to add these words on their behalf.

    I too had occasion on the weekend to pass by and place a small bouquet of flowers at the fence of the U.S. embassy in Ottawa on behalf of my constituents. Like the hon. member for Yukon I was moved and touched by the inscriptions on the cards and notes that were placed there. As my colleague from Yukon said, I think it would be extremely difficult if not impossible for someone to read them and not be tremendously moved by the compassion, sympathy and support that Canadians are expressing.

    Real urgency and the deepest concern about the situation is being expressed from coast to coast to coast in Canada . I talked to my 18 year old son by telephone a couple of nights ago. Like so many young people he expressed real concern about being on the verge of war and what it might mean for him.

    It is one thing for people at my age to discuss it. It is a whole different dynamic for the young people who would be called upon to fight the war and potentially make the ultimate sacrifice for our country.

    Given the gravity of the situation, would my colleague support the notion that we get the standing committees for defence, foreign affairs and justice up and running as quickly as possible with the reconvening of parliament? Would he support that initiative so the committees can look at ways to address the issue as quickly as possible?

  +-(1705)  

+-

    The Deputy Speaker: I remind members not to take too much time. As my colleague stated in an earlier intervention, many members want to speak to this very important subject matter at this time.

    The member for Yukon will not have time to respond because I want to try to hold ourselves to the schedule and accommodate as many members as possible.

+-

    Ms. Judy Sgro (York West, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I will try to keep my comments short to allow others an opportunity to speak as well.

    This is a sad time for everyone everywhere, not just in the U.S. and Canada. The whole world is crying over the terrible terrorist attack that happened last week. Our hearts go out to the United States, to our American friends and neighbours. I am sure all of us have friends living somewhere in the United States and are worried about what is coming today or tomorrow.

    Our hearts go out especially to those who lost their lives and the loved ones they left behind. The TV coverage that was so extensive over the last week showed many sad people in tears, people who had lost their children or firefighters and policemen who had lost their colleagues. The images were so explicit that no matter how tough some people might like to think they are, I do not think there was anyone in our country or in the world who did not shed a tear while watching them.

    Death and destruction are never pleasant, but what happened last Tuesday was extraordinarily disgusting. Wanton killing, the murder of innocent people, destruction of property and terrorism have no place in the civilized society we all cherish in our country.

    What took place in America's airways in New York City, Washington and western Pennsylvania was inexcusable. Those who planned, perpetrated and carried out the acts must be found and punished. Those who harbour them, give them comfort and offer them assistance are equally guilty and must be punished as well. God willing, they will be.

    This is our resolve. Canada is a democracy. It is a constitutional, fair and free society. It opens its doors to offer hope and opportunity to everyone. However our values and hospitality must not be abused, and they have been. As a result Canada, along with the United States and free people everywhere, has been cast into a worldwide struggle against the forces of darkness. It is a battle from which there is no turning. There can be no alternative but absolute victory.

    Let us therefore renew our commitment to respect others, our commitment to peace, order and the rule of law. Anything less diminishes all of us.

    We also have work to do here at home. We must tighten the rules of entry into our country. We must ensure that our borders, so accessible for so long, serve as a barrier too.

    Bill C-11, our new immigration bill, would do much of that. It was started long before the acts of terrorism last week. Changes are in the making but they need to happen sooner rather than later. We must screen out those who wish us ill and who use Canada as a staging ground for terrorism. We must be more focused on identifying illegitimate entrants. We must find a way to speed up the process of ridding our country of those who we have determined have no right to be here.

    Bill C-11 would do exactly that. It would allow people to come here who legitimately apply and who have a right to come to our country. It would make sure that those who have no right to be here are removed much faster. We must deny charity status to groups that fund terrorism. We need anti-terrorism legislation and we will all be working in the committee to ensure it happens sooner rather than later.

    We must make it a special priority to work together with our great neighbour and dearest friend, the United States of America, to counter this scourge. We must be certain the Americans can absolutely depend upon us not to be a conduit for terrorists or for any individual or group bent on illegal or criminal activity.

    At this time of reflection and making of resolutions we must also be alert to, and act forcefully against, unfair treatment of those whom people consider different. The openness of our society has brought the widest diversity imaginable to our population. We celebrate that diversity because it reflects our true values.

  +-(1710)  

    I am fortunate in York West to represent a riding that comprises about 120 different cultural groups. All of them live together in peace and harmony in my riding and in our city. As I stand here and speak about what is coming tomorrow, they are all worried. As worried as they are about what is coming from outside, they are worried about what will come from inside. I urge all members to think deeply about the people in our country who are Canadians and who want to live in peace and hope. We must all ensure that it happens and that we live that way together.

    The opportunity given to all of us who share in the bounty of this land, who were fortunate enough to be born here or immigrate here, must be that we work together to ensure that discrimination is eliminated and equality prevails. There could be no better monument to this terrible tragedy than to ensure that justice, decency and fairness to all are the hallmarks of the Canadian people and our way of life. We must fight for that as energetically as we battle the forces of darkness.

    When I was entering the House a little while ago a group of people outside with placards and signs was playing music, singing and asking us to make sure that peace reigns in our countries. We must not underestimate our immense responsibility here today and in the upcoming decisions that will be made. It is imperative that we represent the views of all our citizens and ensure that safety is the number one priority. We must protect our citizens and not make snap decisions. We must use all possible influence to ensure that justice is done, but it is not done by killing millions of people.

    The people in my riding of York West are worried, including my family. My husband Sam, my daughter Cathy and her husband Graziano, my other children Deanna, Lou, Sam Junior and Claudia and my four wee grandchildren are all worried. Yesterday when I said I was flying to Ottawa my grandchildren asked why I could not drive. I said I was tired and that it would be easier to take a plane. They were worried. They wanted their nona to come back.

    For those of us who were born here, who have never experienced war and who have children or grandchildren, when we banter this word around it is very frightening. We must be careful about the decisions we make. We must do what is right and in the interest of society and all the people.

    When we pick up a newspaper such as today's Toronto Star, the second paragraph on the front page reads:

    New terrorist attacks could target “every subway, every port, every ship, every crossroad, every large gathering of human beings,” U.S. Secretary of Defence Donald Rumsfeld said.

    People who have lived in a safe country all their lives are now living in fear. It is an awful feeling for many people. It makes us all stand back and think about whether we are at peace with ourselves. Have we made sure to thank our families and friends and tell them we love them? The people who got on those planes or went to work in the World Trade Center thought they were on business or vacation. They did not expect to never have the chance to call their families and say they loved them.

    One thing we should all be trying to do as members of parliament is make sure we are leading our communities in being at peace with ourselves, with God and with each other. I look forward to working with all my colleagues as members of parliament on behalf of our country.

  +-(1715)  

+-

    Mrs. Elsie Wayne (Saint John, PC/DR): Mr. Speaker, yesterday in my riding of Saint John, New Brunswick, there was a special ecumenical prayer service at our Roman Catholic diocese. The first person to speak was a gentleman representing the Muslim community. The second speaker was a very dear friend of mine from our Jewish community. The third was a Baptist minister and the fourth was Roman Catholic Bishop Faber MacDonald.

    We were at the cathedral with two-thirds of our firemen in their uniforms, along with members of our police department. When the gentleman representing the Muslims got up to speak, it tugged at my heart and I cried. I cried because he said, like all of us here today, that somehow we have to find peace. He said that the majority of the people in his community is not in favour of terrorist attacks. This is not what they want. He asked if we could all work together to bring peace around the world.

    As my hon. colleague has said, we in the House of Commons must all work together for this is truly the most serious situation since the second world war. On behalf of all the citizens of Saint John our deepest sympathies and prayers go out to all those families and to those who lost their lives in New York City.

    I was in Washington just one week prior to when the attack took place. I have two brothers who have families, children and grandchildren, who live in the United States. I have been in touch with them. My oldest brother asked me to make sure that Canada and the U.S.A. work together to bring peace so that this never happens again either in Canada or in the U.S. We must work together.

    This is not a political statement, but I will say that I hope and trust that the government will be able to provide more money for our military, the RCMP and CSIS. We are all here to do what is right for our people.

+-

    Ms. Judy Sgro: Mr. Speaker, I think it would be appropriate to leave the last word to my colleague as a token of how we will work together on behalf of all people in Canada.

+-

    Mr. Brian Fitzpatrick (Prince Albert, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, I believe that this is a time when people in the world will have to take a stand. It is not a time for riding the fence. There will be a lot of bleeding hearts around. All I can say is let them bleed because it is more important to provide public security and safety than to worry about a few weak knees.

    I am sure my colleagues on the other side of the House know where that paraphrase came from. It came in the midst of the FLQ crisis. However, with all due respect, the events that happened last Tuesday are far more immense and serious than the FLQ crisis.

    The question I have for my colleague from York West is whether the government has the willpower, the resolve and the backbone to deal with this extraordinary event and to take the action that is necessary in much the same way as the prime minister did some 31 years ago. I would be interested in hearing her response to that question.

  +-(1720)  

+-

    Ms. Judy Sgro: Mr. Speaker, I talked about justice. What Canadians want is to see justice done. To have another injustice will not help the situation.

[Translation]

+-

    Mr. Svend Robinson (Burnaby—Douglas, NDP): Mr. Speaker, it is a great honour to take part on behalf of my colleagues in the New Democratic Party and to express first our deepest sympathies to the families of those who died and those who disappeared and whose whereabouts are unknown.

[English]

    We acknowledge the profound sense of tragedy and numbness that all of us felt as we witnessed the horror of what took place on September 11. I know many of us have personal stories.

[Translation]

    I listened with sadness to the comments of the member for Mercier, who spoke of her son.

[English]

    We all have our personal stories of close friends and family members whose whereabouts we did not know and the fear, the anguish and the uncertainty that all of us faced. In some cases we know that they died in that terrible tragedy.

    I want to pay particular tribute to the firefighters and the police officers who put their lives on the line for the rescue and the attempted rescue of the victims of this terrible tragedy. As a Canadian, I was very proud of the response of Canadians in this time of anguish and pain.

    Canadians opened their hearts and their homes from coast to coast to coast to receive those who had been stranded in aircraft. They made a huge difference by donating blood and contributing funds through many different organizations.

    The Vancouver emergency measures team was ready to contribute, and I thank the federal government for its support of that very important team.

    We owe it as well to recognize that among those who died, those who assisted in the rescue, those who supported the ongoing struggle to recover bodies, were many Muslims and Arab Canadians.

    As my leader and my colleagues on all sides of the House have said, it is incredibly important that we recognize that their community was affected just as profoundly and that the terrorists in this instance were not in any way representative or reflective of a particular faith community or religion. Mohamed Elmasry, national president of the Canadian Islamic Congress, spoke very eloquently of this when he said:

    The reality is that Canadian Muslims are grieving as deeply as everyone else. In fact, we grieve a double tragedy. For even as we mourn the loss of lives on Tuesday--including people of all faiths--we are also forced to look over our shoulders. After Tuesday's terrorist attacks, we live in fear of being found guilty by association because of North America's prevailing ignorance about our faith.

    I was very pleased to hear the Prime Minister and the leaders of all parties in the House making a very powerful plea for an understanding that no faith group in any way should be targeted, least of all the Muslim and Arab Canadian group.

    It is incumbent upon us after we grieve, and of course we continue to grieve, to decide how to respond effectively to this profound tragedy as a nation that is a close friend of the United States, as a neighbour that also lost citizens ourselves and as a member of the community of nations.

    At the domestic level I agree with the leader of the Conservative Party, or whatever it is called these days, the progressive conservative democratic representative caucus. I agree completely that parliament must be fully engaged and examine a number of key issues that have come up in the wake of this tragedy that include border screening and the whole question of airport security.

    My colleague from Sackville has pointed out the importance of restoring a strong federal government role through Transport Canada in airport security. We New Democrats say that is long overdue and it must happen now.

    Unfortunately we are seeing the results of an era of privatization and deregulation not only in Canada but in the United States as well with respect to airport security.

    We must not yield to the call of some that we harmonize our policies with the United States with respect to immigration and refugees or least of all our foreign policy.

    Our grief and anger must not in any way lead us to a diminution of the most fundamental and most important civil liberties and human rights. Those who flee from terror themselves tragically must not be victimized now by the call from some, including those in the official opposition, to implement draconian new measures on immigration or refugee policy. As Tom Berger has said “our freedoms are fragile indeed”.

  +-(1725)  

    It is precisely at times such as this, when we respond in anguish and deep grief, when we must be most careful. We have heard the parallel of Pearl Harbor. Let us never forget what followed Pearl Harbour: the internment of Canadians and Americans of Japanese origin and the use of the ultimate outrage, the atomic bomb.

[Translation]

    In 1970, in response to terrorist groups, the War Measures Act was used, which represented a powerful threat to civil liberties with over 300 Quebecers arrested and imprisoned.

[English]

    We must be particularly vigilant at this time not to allow in any way our most basic and fundamental rights and freedoms to be trampled on in the name of the fight for security or against terrorism.

    However, the most important issue I want to address in the few minutes that remain to me is the question of Canada's response, the government's response, to a possible request by the United States or NATO for military action. We have heard what I think are deeply troubling words from the solicitor general and the foreign affairs minister today during question period. I was pleased with the tone that the Prime Minister set in his comments today, but disturbed by the suggestions of some of his colleagues that we are indeed prepared to walk every step of the way with the United States. I believe that is what the solicitor general said. I do not believe that Canadians are prepared to give our government that kind of carte blanche.

    I have been disturbed by the talk of war. I would appeal to our government to resist that talk. As the Belgian foreign minister and the Norwegian foreign minister have both said clearly, this is not war, with all of the horrible consequences it brings. So too must our government take that position. Retaliation is the call, but it must not lead to the death of innocent civilians. There must be full respect for international law. The Prime Minister was not yet prepared to commit to that.

    Any response that Canada makes must be in the context of a multilateral response respecting international law and not simply within the framework of NATO. Part of that international response involves the whole issue of extradition. We must attempt to strengthen the International Criminal Court as well. We must also recognize that we have to deal with the root causes that lead desperate people. As Mario Cuomo, the former governor of New York, said “Why do they hate us so much?”

    We must recognize that the causes of hopelessness and despair, for example, must be addressed, particularly in the Middle East. We must not allow this to lead to Canada supporting national missile defence, which would have had absolutely no impact whatsoever in this context. We must appeal to the government of Israel in particular at this time not to in any way exacerbate the situation there, to return to peace dialogue, to respect international law, to stop the attacks on Ramallah and in the occupied west bank and to end the settlements and respect international law.

    Finally I suggest that we listen to our children. In closing I want to quote from a letter which I received from a young constituent. I am going to just take a minute here, with the indulgence of the House. She sent me a copy of a letter she wrote to the Prime Minister. Kimberly Peabody, a high school student, said she was very worried about the future of the world right now, and she wrote:

     President Bush said “We will hunt down the people who did this and make them pay.” That is completely the wrong way to react to this. He shouldn't be reacting in this “we'll get them back” way. He should be thinking about what he did to make them so mad... Besides if he keeps thinking about “getting them back”, you know more innocent people are going to die. We were always taught in elementary school not to fight back right away but to take a few minutes to calm down and that way you will act more rationally.

    In closing I appeal to our government to respect international law, not to add to the toll of human suffering and martyrdom. Let us do whatever we can to bring the perpetrators of this outrage to justice, but in a way that respects and reflects the Canadian values that are so precious and so dear to all of us.

  +-(1730)  

+-

    Mr. Dan McTeague (Pickering—Ajax—Uxbridge, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I am saddened to have to stand today to ask a question of my colleague. I think it was an extremely good intervention. As we have seen, an extraordinary turn of events in the past week has also affected us as Canadians in so many ways. Perhaps none of us ever imagined that such a day would come, that on the first day back after a period of time off we would be deliberating on an issue that has affected our families, our friends, our neighbours and our brothers and sisters, not just here in Canada and around the world, and most important, there are the efforts of our brave firemen, policemen and those who have suffered as ignominious victims of this brutality in New York.

    As chair for several years I have tried to bring to parliament a realization of the awareness of what Islam and the Muslim faith are all about. I am encouraged by the comments made by so many of my colleagues, including the Prime Minister and the leaders in the House, to ensure that no revenge is sought. I too have a letter from constituents, young Muslim girls who are worried about retaliation. Events this week throughout my region and throughout Toronto have suggested that there is a great deal of tension, perhaps much of it misguided.

    The hon. member's comments with respect to ensuring that we do not respond or act in a vengeful way and that we guard what we are doing, that we wait to see the outcome of this, interest me. I too am interested in looking at that as a viable option because of the modernization of evil, conventional forces and all the thinking, the missile defences and all these wonderful ideas we have had in the past to combat this problem. The social problems that are behind it cannot be ignored.

    I would like to ask in the spirit of goodwill, the spirit of ensuring that God does indeed have a presence in this world and that evil also has a presence in this world, if the hon. member could give us an illustration of what he would like to see, perhaps with respect to Bill C-11, the immigration act. Are there ways in which the hon. member would have a willingness to co-operate to ensure that Canada plays a role to ensure that terrorism is at once snuffed out, but at the same time that the war takes a different form and that we wage war against those who wage war against peace?

+-

    Mr. Svend Robinson: Mr. Speaker, I thank the hon. member for his intervention. Perhaps the best response to his comments is to quote from the statement made by Project Ploughshares, which said:

    Crimes against humanity cannot be redressed through actions which themselves circumvent the law and due process; nor is it possible for states or communities to individually build fortified islands of safety based on their own power or unilateral actions.

    I think we have to be particularly vigilant in the coming days to speak to our friends and allies in the United States with respect to their response. I was troubled and alarmed when George Bush suggested that “We will rid the world of evil doers” as part of this mission of response, because when we look at those who have been defined as the evil doers historically by the United States, whether it was in Chile, where the tragic irony is that September 11 is also the anniversary date of the overthrow of the democratically elected Allende government there, whether it is the devastation and the genocidal impact of sanctions on the people of Iraq, whether it is the targeting of Cuba as a terrorist state by the United States, I think all of us have to be particularly vigilant to ensure that what guides us in our response is the quest for justice and not the quest for retribution and revenge.

  +-(1735)  

+-

    Mr. Bill Blaikie (Winnipeg--Transcona, NDP): Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to join with my colleague from Burnaby--Douglas in speaking on behalf of the NDP at this time, of course following upon the comments of our leader earlier in the debate.

    First of all I would like to extend on my own personal behalf, but again on behalf of my colleagues, as the member for Burnaby--Douglas did as well, our condolences and sympathies to the families of the victims, whether they be Canadian families, American families, British families or families from all around the world, because we understand that there were victims in the World Trade Center from literally dozens of countries around the world. We join in expressing our heartfelt sympathy and condolences to the families of the victims, particularly when it comes to the victims who have yet to be found and who may never be found in a way that permits the kind of closure that is ordinarily available to families.

    I also want to second the comments of the hon. member for Burnaby--Douglas with respect to emergency workers, the firefighters, the policemen and the other emergency workers. The people who were working at the World Trade Center were there by virtue of their work, by virtue of the chance that it was where they happened to work. It seems to me that it is something especially worthy of admiration when we imagine those firefighters and policemen going into that building and knowing, as many of them must have at a certain point, that they were literally marching to their own death. They died not so much from chance, but from doing their duty. I think that this is something that should be especially noteworthy and it certainly is something that has moved me. That is why I want to make particular mention of it.

    I am also reminded in my own province of the way in which Manitobans have responded and lined up at the legislature in Manitoba to sign the books of condolence there and to express their solidarity with our American neighbours.

    In the limited time I have I want to talk more about parliament and the response of parliament to this tragedy, this act of terrorism, because I think this event will test our maturity as a parliament. It will test our maturity as parliamentarians. It will test our maturity as a democracy in regard to just how we deal with this and what we say to each other today, tomorrow and in the coming days and weeks ahead as we try to sort out among ourselves what the appropriate Canadian response should be.

    I would urge upon all hon. members a certain tone. There has been a lot of rhetoric about freedom and democracy, and one of the characteristics of freedom and democracy is that debate is permitted. Differences of opinion are permitted and expected when it comes to dealing with difficult problems.

    I would certainly urge all hon. members to refrain from the temptation to caricature the arguments of those we do not agree with. I heard somebody earlier, for instance, talking about bleeding heart, weak-kneed Liberals. This is not the kind of rhetoric we need, any more than we need talk about other people being warmongers, bloodthirsty or whatever. We need to refrain from using these kinds of words to describe each other because we are in an entirely different situation.

    There has never before been this kind of situation. There has never been terrorism on this scale. The hon. member talked about the fact that parliament has never opened with this kind of an event on its plate, so to speak. I recall parliament coming back in the fall to debate the shooting down of a Korean airliner in perhaps September 1983. That, we thought, was a tremendous tragedy, but it pales in comparison to what we have before us today.

  +-(1740)  

    All I am saying is that the government should take parliament into its confidence. We should have the kind of discussion that all parliaments should be able to. That will require not just an initiative on the part of the government and not just the willingness of the government to do that. That will require of all of us that we conduct ourselves in a certain way and that we refrain from some of the habits that we have developed over the years and which we enjoy so much because some issues simply do not permit that kind of behaviour.

    One of the things we want to know from the government, and I think justly so, perhaps not today or tomorrow but when the time is ripe, is what is it that is being asked of the government. As members of parliament, we have a right to know what is being asked of the government by the United States or by NATO and what are the boundaries that the government has set in its own mind as to what it will do.

    One of the boundaries that we suggested today in the questions asked by my leader in question period and by the member for Burnaby--Douglas and myself is the boundary of international law. If we want to respond to this in a way that creates respect for law and in a way that has more of a chance of being a long term solution, the kind of long term solution that the Prime Minister talked about, the kind of long term effective solution and not just something which feels good in the short run but which actually adds to the situation, then perhaps respect for international law is one of the boundaries that the government might want to commit itself to.

    I hope at some point the government will answer that question because it did not today. It may have its own reasons for not doing so. There was not a commitment today to act within the boundaries of international law. We will be pressing the government on that point because we think it is important and we think Canadians want to know.

    One of the anxieties that Canadians have when they are calling our constituency offices is, how far does this thing go. Is anything permissible? Are we like Raskolnikov in Dostoevsky's Crime and Punishment? Is everything permissible, or are there limits to what as a Canadian government we are prepared to do in this pursuit? That is a very difficult question to ask because the quite natural emotional thing to feel at this point is whatever it takes. I think, yes, whatever it takes, but whatever it takes within the boundaries of international law, within the boundaries of what will actually work and what will not in its own way destabilize the climate and create the possibility for a much larger tragedy than anything that we have before us at the moment.

    So, yes, we understand the rhetoric. We understand the rhetoric insofar as it emerges from the emotion and the outrage, but I think we need more clarity from the government as to what are the boundaries of that rhetoric. In that respect we probably need less rhetoric about war and more rhetoric about long term solutions and more reflective rhetoric.

    I only have two minutes left and I have a few more things I want to reiterate, such as the need not to repeat the mistakes of the past and persecute minorities that are associated with perpetrators of such acts. The hon. member for Burnaby--Douglas did a good job of stressing that so I will not dwell on it.

    We need to see that at these moments there is a need for reflection. Our leader said we need to reflect on why it is that so many people outside the west hate the United States and hate the west. We use the language of freedom often but we need to reflect on why they do not see as freedom what we see as freedom. They often see it as the imposition of a foreign way of doing things, particularly economically but not just economically.

    That is why earlier today I talked about the need to make the distinction between fundamental values such as democracy and human rights, and ideological preferences which are sometimes held up as fundamental freedoms and which are not.

  +-(1745)  

    It is that confusion which is sometimes at the heart of the conflict between the United States and the people who find themselves at odds with it.

+-

    Mr. Sarkis Assadourian (Brampton Centre, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I was following the hon. member's comments very closely. My question is, after everything is said and done and we retaliate and eliminate Mr. bin Laden and his followers, will that be the end or does the member see some other venue to follow, a plan a or a plan b that will bring an end to this kind of terrorism that will take away innocent lives from society forever?

+-

    Mr. Bill Blaikie: Mr. Speaker, I think the answer is quite simple. Although it may well be exactly what we would like to do to bring the perpetrators of this particular crime, whoever they may be, to justice, after that is done that will not be the end of the problem.

+-

    Mr. Myron Thompson (Wild Rose, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, I appreciate the member's comments in his speech today as I have on a number of occasions. I have to ask him a question and maybe he can clarify something for the good old average hardworking Canadian who may not understand a lot of the lingo that comes out of this particular area.

    The member may know that I lived in the United States for the first 35 years of my life before immigrating to Canada, which I have never regretted. I have deep roots and I love that country a great deal.

    I have often asked myself over the years why it is that the Americans are hated to such a degree. I remember the Marshall plan, the Truman policies, the billions of dollars that went into rebuilding countries throughout the world with dollars that were never repaid. There were no complaints from American taxpayers in regard to helping build the railroads through India. I remember those days even though I was very young. I sat by the radio with my family when Pearl Harbor was bombed and I listened to the tragic events, not fully understanding them. I saw my oldest brother and many of my other relatives go off to war. I was a little older when they came back and unfortunately I had to attend some funerals. The price of freedom is not cheap.

    The member and members of his party talked about the need to observe international law. Did Iraq observe international law when it took over Kuwait? Was international law being addressed with the gulf war? What about some of the other great battles that took place where Canadians sacrificed great losses?

    I would like to remind the member who spoke before he did of a simple statement. When we talk about who causes crimes, try saying criminals to see if that answers it to some degree. Who causes these terrorist events? Terrorists, crazy people with absolutely evil minds. Admit it right up front. Rather than talking about the root causes and that this would not happen to the United States if it were more giving or more helpful to the rest of the world. I have seen it sacrifice billions of dollars to no end.

    Would the member please address to the rest of the Canadian public just exactly what it means when his party insists that international law rule the day as we address this extremely serious problem?

  +-(1750)  

+-

    Mr. Bill Blaikie: Mr. Speaker, the hon. member ranged over a wide area of questions and I do not have the time to address everything.

    We would want to talk about international law because we believe in the kind of things that we were taught when we were kids, that two wrongs do not make a right. I wonder how many times the hon. member, as a teacher in a classroom, said that two wrongs do not make a right.

    The member referred to World War II and presumably World War I and other wars where there is an identifiable nation and there is a declaration of war. These are different kinds of situations than the ones we face today. It is certainly not clear to me or any other Canadian at this point that we face a situation like that. The government has not said that is so. It uses that kind of rhetoric but it has not said that is so in any way that we could identify concretely. Mixing those images is probably not appropriate.

    I concur with the hon. member with respect to the generosity of America after the second world war and the way it went about it with the Marshall plan and through the rebuilding of Europe and Japan. None of that is in question. At a certain point I would say to the hon. member there came this perception. It does not justify this action of terrorism.

+-

    The Deputy Speaker: Order, please. I regret but in the spirit of fairness to try to give as many people the opportunity to speak, resuming debate, the hon. member for Ottawa Centre.

+-

    Mr. Mac Harb (Ottawa Centre, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, on behalf of my constituents of Ottawa Centre, I offer my deepest sympathy to the families and friends of the victims and our heartfelt support to the American people.

    Mr. Speaker, before I continue I would like to indicate that I will split my time with the hon. member for Fredericton.

    Our sorrow and sadness is shared by all Canadians, many of whom have attended services like the one held here on Parliament Hill.

    September 11, 2001 marks the first time in history that we have seen people from different countries and different religious backgrounds perish innocently and without knowing their enemy or the cause. September 11 will go down in history as the day when people from all countries, all religions and all cultures were united in their grief, united in their sadness, united in their anger and perhaps most of all, were united in disbelief and shock.

    I deplore violence and I condemn it.

    I watched with shock and horror the images of this tragedy. I reacted with anger and disbelief along with millions around the world. My heart went out to the families and the loved ones of the victims who perished in this senseless act of terror.

    As people go back to their daily lives, I feel sad that the pain and suffering of the victims' families and friends will continue regardless of what governments might do.

    After the collapse of the Soviet Union, the United States became the only undisputed superpower around the world. This new global order created a number of challenges and opportunities for the United States, including shouldering the greater burden of responsibility for preserving international peace. Yet along with this power came a lot of responsibilities.

    Being the most powerful does not provide one with the chance to sit back and watch from the sidelines. Being the most powerful means many more demands to break up fights, to mediate, to make compromises and above all to be continuously engaged. Being the most powerful means dealing with the risk of becoming a target, a magnet and an outlet for grievances, attacks and, unfortunately, a crisis like the one we have just seen.

    In this context the United States has the experience of being involved in numerous complex and difficult situations all of which require diligence and hard work. Yet being the only superpower means more pressure from different parts of the world, different interests and different needs. Being the most powerful means that short term and long term policies must be continually updated and focused to meet the new role of being the only judge in town.

    We must therefore ask ourselves if NATO and other regional security arrangements have policies that reflect this new era. Today we can no longer rely simply on a strong military to ensure our security. Today as governments around the world prepare for action, we as Canadians must join in and do what is necessary to prevent this from ever happening again. We must remain vigilant and keep a watchful eye on the international scene to protect not only our own country but also to protect all of our neighbours around the globe.

    We must also ensure not to confuse and discriminate against our neighbours just because of their religious background or place of origin. We must remember that most of our recent immigrants from that part of the world are here because of fear of violence and war. They are here to build a better future for their children. They too are feeling the pain and suffering of the victims and their families.

    As Canadians we must continue our tradition of helping those in times of need wherever and whenever disaster and tragedy strikes. We must also encourage all nations to do the same and to pursue foreign policies that build on international co-operation.

    The strongest and most powerful nation must take the lead and confront the cruel reality that we witnessed on September 11. None of us, not one single government, not one single country, can afford to sit on the sidelines any longer. We all must stand up and confront terrorism in all of its forms.

    Decision makers around the world must update and adopt policies and long term plans to prevent events similar to those we witnessed on September 11.

    The most powerful government must accept responsibility for maintaining peace and security on a global scale. This burden requires bold leadership and a determination to succeed, no matter how long it takes.

  +-(1755)  

+-

    Ms. Libby Davies (Vancouver East, NDP): Mr. Speaker, I thank the hon. member across the way for his very thoughtful comments. Indeed, there have been many thoughtful comments made in the House today.

    I have been quite overwhelmed by the e-mails, letters and phone calls that I have received from my constituents in east Vancouver expressing their deep feelings about this tragedy and about the heroic efforts of the rescue workers, firefighters, police officers and the people of New York city who volunteered to help and who are still helping.

    I certainly want to add my voice to that of my colleague's and other members of the House today who have expressed their sense of loss about this tragedy and the fact that our world has now changed.

    I also want to pick up on the very thoughtful comments from the leader of the NDP, the member for Burnaby--Douglas and the member for Winnipeg--Transcona made earlier today about this being a time when parliamentarians have to be very thoughtful about what we do. The member across the way, I think, also expressed some of those sentiments.

    I have been really overwhelmed by the response from my constituents who are incredibly fearful about what will now happen. People feel the sense of the tragedy but they also fear a great sense of unease and insecurity.

    The NDP House leader raised this question. When we consider our response in the name of freedom and democracy, what do we mean and when does our freedom become someone else's oppression?

    Does the member agree with me? Members in our caucus have really tried to put a very strong message out today that in that response we have to ensure violence does not now beget violence, that we do not escalate the kind of conflict we have seen and that we do not repeat the mistakes of the past in terms of NATO policy or U.S. policy that caused great suffering and oppression for peoples around the world.

    If we truly mean that we want to give respect to all faiths and all peoples both here in Canada as well as globally, then we must show that by our actions not just by the words that we use.

    Would the member agree that we need to engage in a response that is within the bounds of international law and judicial process rather than allowing rampant militarism to take over our society which I think in the long run it will create more oppression and more suffering, and we will not have solved the crisis before us.

  +-(1800)  

+-

    Mr. Mac Harb: Mr. Speaker, I totally agree that we have to work collectively in a multilateral approach to deal with these issues. I suggest to my colleagues that this is precisely what the American administration, as well as its allies around the globe and friends in the free world are doing as we speak. That is to build a coalition so they can collectively take action to weed out terrorism, wherever it exists.

    On that note, I was reading an e-mail on the website last night from someone who was from Afghanistan and presently living in the states. The person indicated that there was no need to worry about marching into Afghanistan to destroy it because Russia and the Taliban had already done that. There was nothing left except the rubble.

    In essence, there is a tremendous fear out there whether we will target civilians. That fear is shared not only by Canadians, but also by Americans and collectively by the free world.

    The mere notion of whether or not we should act should not even be a question. The action must take place now to weed out the problem.

    We also have to have a parallel approach that goes along with it, and that is the engagement approach. We must not act without having that parallel approach. We can no longer sit on the sidelines and watch events unfold around the world and say that this is not our problem any more. Every problem in every part of the world is our problem regardless of where we live.

+-

    Mr. Myron Thompson (Wild Rose, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, will the member agree with me that one of the most elemental duties of the House of Commons and its members is to provide the very best we can to protect the citizens of our country, the sovereignty of our land and of the North American continent? Is that a very high priority and is it essential on the member's list?

    If so, is he as an individual member of government prepared to encourage his finance minister to find ways to stop spending money that is not necessary for other things and direct it toward this great cause?

+-

    Mr. Mac Harb: Mr. Speaker, the government is doing all it can to take all the necessary actions to deal with the issue at hand.

+-

    Hon. Andy Scott (Fredericton, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, on behalf of all of us who live in my riding of Fredericton, we share the expressions of shock, horror and sadness that I have heard all day here. What happened in New York and Washington last week was not only an immense tragedy for the United States as a country, it was a tragedy for all humanity.

    Just last year we entered into a new era, the 21st century, an era of new hope and possibility. No one could have foreseen that we would be here today after this horrendous act that has sent shock waves through the entire global community.

    I was prompted last week to call and try to have the opportunity to speak in this debate because of what I was hearing in my community, on the television, on the radio and what I was reading in the media. These were calls for great force, immediate force and indiscriminate force in some cases.

    While I continue to be concerned about that, having heard the leaders of all parties speak today, I feel more confident that we all understand the need for a measured response. In fact, over the course of the last week we could measure the moderation that came into the debate.

    A service was held last night in Fredericton, at the First Wesleyan Church. Dr. Medders, the president of the Bethany Bible College in Sussex, New Brunswick, spoke as an American. He talked of his own struggle as a man of faith dealing with this, and as an American. He called upon my community and his community to remember that God was a God of love. He appealed to everyone for moderation.

    The assault last week was targeted at the Americans, but it was also an assault on civilized humanity of all faiths.

    When we examine what it is that defines our civility, it is a respect for the rule of law and fundamental rights and freedoms. I believe we have evolved to a place where we hold life and freedom of the utmost importance above all else, crossing over geographic boundaries, religious or political affiliation and values like love and tolerance. These are values with which Canadians are very familiar.

    Unfortunately, it would seem there also exist on the planet those who lack this level of civility, who do not share our values and who feel that it is acceptable to take away these basic fundamental human rights. They hold their views above the sanctity of life itself.

    I make the point is because if we are going to respond on the basis of the argument that the terrorists violated our sense of civility, then we need to ensure that we respond on the basis of those same standards of civility and do not sink to the depths that the terrorists have. I believe that would play into their hands and to those who would welcome our sinking to their level.

    The attack was not about a particular region or faith. Rather it was a misguided idea that in all cases the ends justify the means. This instance shows how wrongheaded that expression can be. This is not to say that this unprecedented attack does not make us angry and instinctively wish to punish those responsible for their terror. They must be brought to justice. However we need to ensure that we define with great precision the other side of the conflict. Bringing harm to civilians while waging war against a religion or region will not bring justice. It will indicate that we have been unworthy stewards of the very values that these criminals have violated.

    We need to argue for the rule of law, not the tyranny of excessive power any more than we can abide by the tyranny of terror. The events have caused great interest and angst. Our call-in shows have been inundated, and it would seem the conclusion is that the world will never be the same. There is a great sense of just how defining these events will be for all of us.

  +-(1805)  

    Probably the most important defining element of all of this may be in the response for better or for worse. I would hope that in our response we will seek justice and not revenge. We must view innocent people in other parts of the world the same as we do those same people in North America and any actions against them as horrendous as those perpetrated last week.

    As President Bush's message to the Prime Minister suggests that he would thank Canadians, I would like to thank all my constituents in the riding of Fredericton for their prayers, support and generosity toward the victims during this difficult time.

    I would like to take the opportunity to thank the faith community in Fredericton for their outpouring of support and faith for the victims of this event. I would like to commend Premier Lord and the Leader of the Opposition, Bernard Richard, who called on using restraint when we defined what the Canadian response would be. They called on all New Brunswickers not to lose sight of our historic values of tolerance and love for each other.

    I would also like to acknowledge all of the timely preparedness of everyone at CFB Gagetown who on short notice were ready to provide any emergency support and service as needed.

    I spoke with Sherif Fahmy, the leader of the Muslim community in Fredericton last week, to offer my own personal support to that community and encouraged him to bring any incidents of backlash to my immediate attention. I urge everyone in the constituency to remember that the Muslim community in Fredericton are people of love and innocence. Now more than ever they too need our respect, affection and support.

    After carefully considering these events, we need to rethink the security systems in Canada. Many of these systems are expensive but critical. We need to make the resources available to these agencies, as well as our local airports. If it is to work we must realize that some of the smaller airports are going to have difficulty living with higher standards of security. I believe this is an obligation that falls on the federal government.

    On a final and personal note, I would like to join with my constituents to pay tribute to the emergency workers whose heroism stands out as a beacon at a time when evil is getting so much attention.

  +-(1810)  

+-

    Mr. Gurbax Malhi (Bramalea—Gore—Malton—Springdale, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I have some comments. The events of September 11, 2001, the terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon, have left all of us in a state of shock. These attacks were senseless and misdirected acts of brutality against innocent men and women. On behalf of the Sikh community I condemn this act.

    I want to express my deepest sympathy toward those who lost loved family members, friends and co-workers in these horrible events.

    Osama bin Laden, the prime suspect in these heinous acts, wears a beard and a turban. Suspicion and anger are being directed by those who simply do not know any better against members of communities whose dress, culture and religion are different. Many Sikhs who wear the turban and beard belong to a different religion, but perhaps have been mistakenly linked because of their dress code to the prime suspect, Osama bin Laden.

    There are already reports of violence against visible minorities in Canada and the United States, but all of us must know better.

    We must know better because all decent women and men, no matter their ethnic or cultural background, are one in grieving the events at the World Trade Center and Pentagon.

    We must know better because if we are to wage war against these terrorists we must know that we are not waging war against a particular race, religion or ethnic community.

    Canada celebrates its multiculturalism. All Canadians, no matter their racial background or religious beliefs, are working together to create a global community of democracy, decency and fairness. We can be proud of that. We must not allow the terrible incidents of September 11 to take that way from us.

+-

    Hon. Andy Scott: Mr. Speaker, I welcome the intervention from my colleague, only to say that I believe at this time that it is necessary for people from all backgrounds to express themselves clearly and without equivocation in terms of those values that he articulated. Many members have articulated these values all day.

    It makes me proud to be a Canadian and to hear those values resonating from all corners of the House, from all regions of the country and from all religious faiths.

+-

    Mr. Chuck Strahl (Fraser Valley, PC/DR): Mr. Speaker, thank you for this opportunity to speak to this very important motion that will pass unanimously later this day.

    On behalf of my constituents, I would like to express the sadness and horror we all felt over the last week, especially for our American friends but also for the many Canadian families who have suffered. I think all of us will look back obviously and say that we are changed people.

    I think we all believe that as of September 11 everything has changed. In many ways it has but in another way maybe nothing has changed. The date, the scenes and the horror will be forever in our minds because of the newspaper reports and what we have seen on television for endless hours.

    The fight against terrorism has been going on for a long time and it will go on from this day forward for a long time as well. It is never an easy fight because the war, which everyone will willingly engage in on terrorism, is not an old fashioned war. It is a different type of war. The war that we fought in World War I, then changed to a more technological war in World War II, and then when we got to the Stealth bombers in the Iraq war it changed again, but this war is different again. It will not be easily won but obviously win it we must.

    The other thing that has not changed is the role of government. The role of government is to maintain order and to extend the rule of law on behalf of its citizens. We count on our governments to do that. When we give up, for example, the right to bear arms, we do that because we expect the government to look after our safety. We do it willingly because we want the government to have that primary role.

    However the government has to exert that role and has to exercise its responsibilities wisely. Over the next few days, weeks and maybe even years there will be continual calls for the government to use its power properly in the fight against terrorism both here and abroad.

    Before I go further, Mr. Speaker, I would like to indicate that I am splitting my time with the member for Cumberland--Colchester.

    I have also heard of two extremes. I have not heard this personally but I have read it in the papers and I have heard a little bit about it just in passing. One is that somehow the west is responsible for this, that somehow we have created this monster, this problem or whatever, and we are to blame. The other one is that we need to go over there and bomb somebody into the dark ages even though we do not even know who they are.

    Neither extreme can carry the day. Now is not the time to say that we are going to get even with somebody or we are going to show them how much explosive power we have. On the other hand, it is not the day to point at other people, other countries or our American friends and say “You're to blame somehow”. I think it is preposterous to say that. However, I hear it and I have read it a little bit. I think we should do away with that in our lexicon and in our discussions. It is not someone's fault when some terrorist does a dirty deed. It is evil, it is wrong and it needs to be fought with all the power that governments and individuals have so that people around the world know that we have a zero tolerance for racism and violence in homes.

    We also have zero tolerance toward terrorism. We do not entertain the thought. We do not blame others. We find it, we ferret it out and we deal with it. We do not blame others. We deal with the issue.

    September 11, 2001 was supposed to be known as the 20th anniversary of the UN day of peace. Early that day the UN secretary general issued a press release calling for an end to hostilities around the world. Instead the world watched history's most despicable terrorist act unfold before their eyes and, in a sad and perhaps inevitable way, another generation has seen an end to innocence.

    How were we innocent? Some of us were simply gullible. We have seen a lot of terrorism. We have seen it in Israel, in Ireland and around the world but it was always over there, over there being some thousands of miles away, an ocean way. It has always been somewhere else.

    Surely that innocence is gone. Even for kids as young as five or six years old who have been watching this stuff on television are seized with it. They are afraid and so terrorism has worked its ugly magic. It is in everybody's mind and in everybody's heart.

  +-(1815)  

    It is also an innocence in that we have been complacent. We have seen terrorism and have known of terrorism activity in Canada. They have raised funds here or have set up headquarters here. We have been complacent.

    We have to sit down, not in the months ahead but quickly, and ask what steps are needed to make sure that terrorism does not use this country as a jumping off spot to attack others, that it does not raise funds here and that it is not welcome here. We want everyone around the world to know that there is no welcome mat here and that if terrorists come here they are looking for trouble.

    Terrorism is different from people visiting, immigrating or finding refuge in our country. Terrorism is evil. It is a crime that should not have any place in Canadian society. We need to send that message around the world.

    I think we had an innocence about globalization. We wanted to believe all the good things about globalization. We wanted to believe the advantages of free trade, in which I believe. We wanted the opportunity to share wealth with the poorer nations. We wanted the technological advances to be shared around the world. We saw great opportunities. What a great number of pluses in that whole potpourri of globalization issues.

    However there is a downside. The downside is that we have to be careful because there is ease of access to easy targets. Terrorism does not know borders any more. There is ease of travel and ease of using technology against innocent people. Even the simple use of cell phones and the Internet to co-ordinate that stuff is a downside with which we have to deal. We need to realize that something else has happened that we need to work into lives and into government policy.

    I think all of us will be able to describe forever where we were and what we were doing when the news first hit us on Tuesday morning. It is one of those moments in history that will not come and go. While the debate here today is a good one, it will be quickly forgotten but we will all remember where we were on Tuesday morning.

    I was in Edmonton at the time. I was doing an interview early that morning. I got up at 5.30 a.m. because it was important. I did an interview on CBC about what would happen in the House this week. It turned out to be completely irrelevant, not only for that day but almost irrelevant to my thoughts for the last week. I have not been able to think about this place or concentrate on getting ready for parliament. My staff has been glued to the television. We cannot get out of this because the horror is too much. We will never forget it but it has to galvanize us now into action.

    We are here in the House because it is about the business of the nation. Our business now is not just for Canada but for the world, and the world has said that we have a war against terrorism and this House and this nation must do their part.

    I think older generations already know the feelings we are experiencing now. I think they felt the same way when Pearl Harbor was bombed and when President Kennedy was killed. We wonder what has gone wrong. We wonder where we are and we feel we have lost control. The nice little world I was planning for the fall session has come unglued. I think the older generations knew and felt that too.

    I think our memories will now be divided by life before the attack on America and life after the attack. It will never be the same. Every trip through heightened airport security will remind us of that day. Every lengthy border crossing will twig our memories. Every replay on the television will drive it home that we are not an island, that we do not live in isolation and that we are not able to protect ourselves any more.

    Perhaps the most important thing of all is that it is finally our generations' moment to pick up the torch of freedom and liberty handed to us by our forefathers at such tremendous personal cost.

    The true north strong and free did not happen by accident. America's life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness was not given to the people of the United States as a birthright. These privileges came about because men and women made a conscious decision that some things are worth fighting for, that atrocities committed far away and against total strangers are unacceptable acts against the liberties of us all.

  +-(1820)  

    We have now lived for a generation dreaming that because the battle against evil was fought and won, it was won for all time, but it was a pipe dream, an illusion. The type of war being waged against freedom has changed but the evil continues on unrelenting.

    I will conclude with the words of Winston Churchill during the darkest part of the second world war when he said:

    You ask, what is our policy? I say it is to wage war by land, sea, and air. War with all our might and with all the strength God has given us.... You ask, what is our aim? I can answer in one word. It is victory. Victory at all costs--Victory in spite of all terrors--Victory, however long and hard the road may be, for without victory there is no survival.

    We have had a horrible wake-up call. We will not go back to sleep. We will keep pressing forward. Let us hope that future generations will say that we rose to the challenge given to our generation, that we were not found wanting and that we did our part to put evil back in its place.

+-

    Mr. Peter Adams (Peterborough, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I listened with considerable interest to the member for Fraser Valley who ended with a quotation. I would like to read one. This came in an e-mail to me today from a young women named Janet Mader, a 15 year old who lives in Calgary. This is a couplet. I think it is actually haiku, if that is the right word. This is what she said:

    

May what's left of peace blossom and grow,
Turn the anger and tears to unity and strength.

    That was the response from one young person in Canada.

    As I mentioned earlier today, people come to us bewildered, frightened and sometimes simply confused. The member also mentioned that. I have been asking members today, and I will now ask the member for Fraser Valley, what has he been saying to individual constituents. He is saying to donate blood, yes, in the short run, help the Canadian Red Cross now and in the future, but what specific things is he saying to his constituents.

    I understand the general things but in this confusing situation I have been asking different members the same question. What does he say to a constituent on the street who is confused, angry and wants to do something specific?

  +-(1825)  

+-

    Mr. Chuck Strahl: Mr. Speaker, there are some specific things which have already been mentioned. I know funds have been set up to help the victims in New York. Obviously people have been giving blood and so on.

    Many people in my community have been called to prayer, which is something unusual, not normally done in our sedate Canadian culture. People have actually found solace in places of worship where they have been able to gather together, support one another and communicate their compassion and concern not only for the victims of the tragedy but for the evolving situation. They pray for wisdom. They want people to weigh the different options before them. They almost ask for a divine intervention. We all understand how serious this is. People are doing that and I think it is a good thing. It has been a good thing in our community.

    I have also been encouraging people not to let terrorists win by giving up on their routine. It will not be routine again. When people get on a plane now it is not routine. Some people in caucus have been saying that their five and six year old children have asked them not to get on the plane. It will never be the same.

    I think we fight back, at least in part, by saying that we will not cower before these cowardly acts. We will get up in the morning, put our pants on, go to work, pay our bills and get at it. We must steel our resolve.

    Canadians should understand what we are up against when people talk about the war on terrorism. Our own foreign minister said it and the president of the United States has said it. When terms like that are used it means that it is not a quick fix. When we resolve to do something and say that we should do something we must understand what it means.

    I have been telling my own constituents the same thing. It is not a quick fix. Anything could be a target and there might be another one. What if it is the subway tomorrow? What if it is a train? What if it is another country? We cannot stop. We have to get up, ask for God's guidance, if you will, but we have to get back in the saddle and go at it.

    I have been saying to people that the worst thing we could do is close the borders, hunker down in our cell, not talk to our neighbours, to start pointing fingers at other religions, all those kinds of things. Those are all the wrong responses.

    The right response is that we will have zero tolerance for terrorism and for people who harbour terrorists but we will reach out to people around the world. We will do what Canadians have done best for a long time, which is to show our compassionate side knowing full well, as the president has said about the Americans, we are a great and generous people. We can be fierce when angered as well and right now my constituents are damned angry.

*   *   *

+-Business of the House

[Business of the House]
+-

    Ms. Marlene Catterall (Ottawa West--Nepean, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I rise on a point of order. I understand there have been discussions among the House leaders and that there is consent, given the importance of this debate, for the following motion. I move:

    That the House continue to sit until midnight today.

+-

    The Deputy Speaker: The House has heard the terms of the motion. Is it the pleasure of the House to adopt the motion?

    Some hon. members: Agreed.

    (Motion agreed to)

*   *   *

-Attack on the United States

[Government Orders]

    The House resumed consideration of the motion.

+-

    Mr. Bill Casey (Cumberland—Colchester, PC/DR): Mr. Speaker, I am certainly pleased to join this debate and I am certainly proud to follow the last speaker, the member for Fraser Valley, who did such a great job in expressing many of the feelings of the progressive conservative democratic representative coalition. We certainly extend our condolences to all of the victims of this terrible disaster, in both the United States and Canada and around the world.

    I want to extend those condolences from my own riding of Cumberland--Colchester as well. We have had many calls. People just call and ask how they can help and what they can do. We are trying to help them through that.

    I am also pleased that our coalition will stand shoulder to shoulder and support the government in its effort to fight terrorism. As the member for Fraser Valley stated very clearly, we will have zero tolerance for terrorism anywhere. I think that is the proper attitude at this time and we are all very supportive of that.

    I want to refer to the actual government motion today, which says that part of the purpose of this debate is that the House express its heartfelt condolences to the families of the victims and the American people. I am moved and impressed by the reaction of Canadians and how they are doing this. If there is any question about the sincere sentiment of Canadians, about how they feel, all one has to do is visit the condolences books set up by the Speaker in the Hall of Honour and take some time to read the comments from people from across the country and from other countries who have come here to write notes in these books. They do not just sign the condolences book. Often they will tell a story and maybe write a page, or they will have their children add comments. It is truly impressive and moving when they express their sadness, their sorrow and their concern in regard to this terrible act.

    In fact I called my own office and asked that condolences books be established in our two offices in Amherst and Truro. The condolence books will be available starting today. It is just a reaction from the comments made by Canadian people in those books.

    Another sign of the sentiment of Canadians that impressed me a lot was that on Wednesday when I drove through four provinces from Nova Scotia to Ottawa, it struck me that everywhere flags were at half mast. That is a sign of the sadness and sorrow felt by people everywhere in all of those four provinces, and I am sure all the other provinces and territories feel the sadness and sorrow.

    Very quickly the thought crossed my mind that maybe we should fly our flags at half mast one day for every victim until I figured out that it would take us over 14 years. It is really devastating to think of the disaster that has happened.

    On Tuesday, in my own riding, volunteers went to New York on news of this incredible disaster. From little communities in my riding like Southampton, Joggins, Parrsboro and Amherst, volunteer firefighters jumped in the car, drove to New York through the night, arrived at 10 o'clock in the morning and offered to help. They were immediately recognized because they are first responders and are trained in high angle rescue. They went right to work. There were no questions asked. They just did it, these volunteers from these little. communities. It makes all of us proud as members of parliament to have constituents like that.

    The Minister of Transport today acknowledged all the contributions of the airports across the country, which took in the aircraft that could not land in the United States. They came to Canada and that presented a great risk, but Canadians took that risk. These planes were not allowed to land in the U.S. for good reason: because there was a risk. They came to Canada and were not turned away. Canada welcomed those planes to little communities right across the country. Again, the Minister of Transport acknowledged that Atlantic Canada bore the brunt of that in airports like Halifax, Gander, St. John's, Stephenville and so on. We are just really proud that our constituents and our people in Atlantic Canada reacted in such a manner.

    In every tragedy and every situation like this, be it Swiss Air 111 or what have you, I think that Atlantic Canadians and Canadians have acted in the most compassionate, responsible and competent way possible. I believe it was our leader, the member for Calgary Centre, who said today that Canadians are ahead of us on this whole issue, and they are.

    Although these crashes did not occur here they certainly affected us all in many ways and will continue to affect us.

  +-(1830)  

    There are still between 40 and 70 missing and innocent Canadians who just happened to be in the wrong place at the wrong time. That is going to affect hundreds of people directly and thousands of people indirectly in the country. We may never know what happened to some of those people.

    When I arrived in Ottawa the other day, I found gates everywhere. The access to my workplace was blocked off. There were policemen in bulletproof vests and police cars everywhere. It really sent me a signal about how much our lives here have changed. The heightened security was incredible. A Muslim diplomat came to my office to see me to talk about these issues. He was not allowed in the building, not because he was Muslim but because no one was allowed in my building. The only way someone could come to see me was to go through a metal detector at the back of the building. They had to go around to the back of the building to come in. I was embarrassed for my visitor to have to go through this, but again it is a sign of what we are faced with in the future.

    The Muslim diplomat relayed to me how his relatives in Canada are already being singled out and being identified as perhaps part of this terrorism. It was very troubling to him and is very troubling to his community. It raises awful questions about labelling any religion, culture or nation with this terrible hate crime of terrorism. It is not accurate and should not be done. Almost every member in every party has spoken on this. It is very important that we understand that these are hate crimes. These are not crimes committed by regular people no matter what their religion or culture.

    In my opinion this whole exercise has clarified the situation and the word terrorism. I have heard the word terrorism my whole life and I have never really realized what it meant. I am not sure I realize now, but I realize it must be redefined in our own way of thinking. It is not just a crime; it is worse than a crime and it must be treated differently from other crimes in my opinion. Certainly Canada can no longer sit on the sidelines and talk about terrorism in an abstract manner. We are very much a part of this now. It has come to us, it has affected our country and will continue to affect our country. It is important that we as a government and as a parliament come up with a comprehensive strategy to deal with this now and in the long term. We have to share with other countries that have experienced this terrible terrorism. We have to share in the responsibility to stop it. We have to stop it in a responsible fashion. We will be insisting that whatever strategy is developed from this event, we will be responsible. We have to understand that we are almost on a treadmill. The acts of terrorism are continuing and are getting worse, from a bar in Germany to the ship that was bombed in 2000, to the barracks in Saudi Arabia, and now this incredible series of crashes in New York that took perhaps 5,000 lives at once.

    This is an incredible story of successful hijackings. Four out of four hijackings were successful. It really brings it home and emphasizes and focuses on the terrible shortcoming in our security systems. Although it happened in the U.S., I am sure that it could have happened in Canada. If there was ever a clear message about security this is it. We must completely revamp all our systems. I heard the Minister of Transport say today that the department is reviewing all aspects of transportation. I am certainly pleased to hear that. We will be focusing on ensuring that he does follow up. This escalating series of terrorist acts must stop. We must stop them now. We must take a stand as a world and stop them.

    As I said, the target was the U.S. but Canada has been severely impacted, as if we were the target. Our transportation system ground to a halt immediately. Our economic markets and stock markets ground to a halt. Our systems ground to a halt, our security changed and we are now very much a part of this worldwide crisis.

    We must act responsibly. In the coming days this coalition will be asking questions. We will be asking the government to move quickly and responsibly in many ways. There will be a debate about a continental security system. We have to be involved with that debate from its very inception. We cannot come in at the very end when it is too late to talk about protection for our sovereignty and our culture in Canada. We can be a part of this but still protect our sovereignty and culture and we must be in on the ground floor.

  +-(1835)  

    We must talk about the failure of the intelligence service in North America. We must ensure that it is well funded and properly equipped to do the job. We must ask for briefings from the Americans on what they will do, on how they will react. We should ask the Americans to brief parliamentarians on what they will do. There are many other questions that we will be asking of them about the transportation system and also the security system.

    I will close by saying that we as a party, we as members, share in the grief that the Americans are feeling. We absolutely commit to share in the resolution of this problem in every effort to stop terrorism worldwide.

  +-(1840)  

+-

    Mr. Joe Jordan (Leeds—Grenville, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I just want to begin my intervention by saying on behalf of the constituents of Leeds--Grenville that we certainly have our American friends in our hearts, in our thoughts and in our prayers. Much like your own riding, Mr. Speaker, mine is one where the vast majority of my constituents can walk out the front door and see New York State across the St. Lawrence River.

    I listened intently to the debate today and I am heartened by a number of the themes that are coming through. One of the first themes that seems to be woven through just about every member's comments is the notion that we will not have vigilante justice on our streets. We will be patient, we will get the facts and we will not identify any one ethnic group or religious group for retribution, because clearly these terrorists do not speak for any one ethnic group. There is a disconnect between them and the issues and problems that are facing people from the regions where they train and practise their craft.

    That leads to my question. It goes back to something that the hon. member's colleague from Fraser Valley touched on. I think it was a very important distinction to make. I too was troubled because the debate for a while seemed to be taking on the steam that there was some sort of moral equivalency between what the terrorists did and what the foreign policies of the Americans have done to areas of that region. I categorically reject that notion. I find it repugnant.

    I would like to ask the member if he would care to comment, because I think it is important that we make the distinction between having not revenge but justice. Whenever we get the chance I think it is important that those of us who feel this way clearly state that this act cannot be justified. It cannot be justified through any argument that somehow the actions of the United States brought this on. I would just like to give the member the floor again so he could comment on that.

+-

    Mr. Bill Casey: Mr. Speaker, I appreciate the question. I agree entirely that in some ways people try to justify these things by saying that the United States and western countries have tried to impose their culture and their standards on the rest of the world. I totally disagree with that. I do not believe that is the case.

    However, I believe that some of these countries are victims of technology. Many of these countries have had a closed society for years. They have not had to answer questions from their citizens about other cultures, other standards of living and other ways. However, suddenly every person in the world can visit other cultures, other ethnic backgrounds and other countries through the Internet, through television or through satellites, and that opens up all kinds of questions in the human mind in every country. It opens up questions here about cultures in other countries and the opposite is true. People in some of the other countries that traditionally have been closed societies are now seeing other options. I am sure it raises questions. Maybe people feel this is a threat.

    I do not believe it is an imperialistic effort by the United States or other western countries to impose their cultures, but by virtue of technology and communications those cultures have become available for people to examine and consider for the first time ever. I believe that is very much part of the problem.

+-

    Hon. Jean Augustine (Etobicoke—Lakeshore, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I wish to commend my colleague for describing the responses that were made by his constituents. We have also had such responses in my riding of Etobicoke--Lakeshore. Those responses have been well received by our friends in the U.S. I will read a letter from Karen Weltzel of Lompoc, California, who wrote:

    We Americans are overwhelmed by the worldwide displays of grieving, prayer, and support. I've seen some news coverage of the services held on Parliament Hill and in other countries yesterday. As an everyday citizen ambassador of the United States, I thank you, your government and your fellow countrymen, for joining us in mourning and remembrance of those who have so tragically lost their lives. I also thank you for the support you have offered in the global effort to seek justice and end terrorism. I pray that God grants to our nation's leaders, and you and your colleagues in governments throughout the world, the wisdom, courage, strength and will, to win the war against terrorism, hatred, bigotry, racism, ignorance and violence. The rest of us have, and continue, to pledge to support you in those efforts.

    She concludes by saying that she looks forward to following the progress of the discussion in Canada.

    I just wanted to make this comment to let my colleague know that our responses and those of his constituents and mine have been well received by our American friends.

  +-(1845)  

+-

    Mr. Bill Casey: Mr. Speaker, this awful event has shown the world the quality of Canadians, our compassion and how much we care. It has been a lesson for all of us. We have all gone through an emotional time. I have gone through several different emotions and continue to do so.

    I appreciate the member commenting on my constituents who have gone to serve in New York. They are volunteer firefighters from little communities and I want to say their names for the record: Paul Seguin, Glenn Levy, Scott McLellan from Southampton fire department; Jeremy Dunphy the chief of the Parrsboro fire department; Laurie Melanson and Maurice McKinnon of the Joggins fire department; and Danny Brooks, a paramedic based in Amherst.

    These are just regular people, regular Canadians who saw a need, jumped in their cars and drove to New York where they went to work in the rubble and the dust to help find whatever in the way of remains and trying to help in any way they could. Again, it is why members of parliament can be so proud of our constituents and the people of Canada.

[Translation]

+-

    Mr. Yvon Charbonneau (Anjou--Rivière-des-Prairies, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I will share the time allotted me with one of my colleagues.

    I would like to add my voice to those of the Prime Minister and my colleagues in expressing my condolences to the American people, the family and friends of the victims of the horrible terrorist attack that took the lives of an overwhelming number of innocent Americans, as well as Canadians and persons from other countries.

    Let us make no mistake. Whether it involves a handful of people swept away by some ideology or other, a group of unbalanced individuals or a large or small country, all acts of terrorism are to be condemned. The acts perpetrated in the United States on September 11 rightly elicited universal reprobation. Terrorism is a violent rending of the fabric of humanity and a direct affront to all attempts, to dialogue and to the construction of harmonious and strong international relations.

    Canada's position has been clear in this regard, as was the speed with which we offered our friends and neighbours all the help they might need at this difficult time. Our solidarity found particular expression on the day of national mourning, last Friday, an initiative that expressed the depth of feeling of the government and the people of Canada for the victims of the attacks and their families.

    On the other hand, voices are being raised just about everywhere calling for revenge for this attack, far worse than the attack on Pearl Harbor, for those responsible for it, and their accomplices, to be punished without mercy, taken back into the stone age in fact.

    We know that the U.S. government wants to use NATO to mobilize the international community against what it terms an act of war against the United States but also against democracy and the rights and freedoms of all civilized countries.

    There is one major question remaining, however: identification and location of the guilty parties. Was a network of individuals involved? Did these individuals receive the support of a state or states, or did they not?

    Much reference is, of course, made to the billionaire bin Laden and his network, or to the Taliban of Afghanistan. In both cases, these are people well known to the U.S. and to the CIA because they have supported them, armed them in fact, to fight the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan. According to specialists in the Arab and Muslim world, these are monsters of the Americans' own making.

    I am certainly in favour of the U.S. finding a way to break with their former allies, if they are found responsible for the events of September 11. However how can this be done without the murder of other innocents, this time far away from U.S. cameras, but people who are just as real and just as important as those whose met their deaths on September 11.

    I personally am far more in favour of the motion before this House, which states that the House:

    --reaffirm its commitment to the humane values of free and democratic society and its determination to bring to justice the perpetrators of this attack on these values--

    I believe that the true solutions to these problems of terrorism and international security must be sought through the building of peace rather than the constantly increasing, and often blind, use of brute force.

    These solutions lie in the strengthening of international and multilateral institutions that can promote health, education, human rights, democracy, the environment and international co-operation.

    They also lie in the respect of international law and the search for sustainable political solutions, which will stabilize the international context. Specifically, in the event of regional conditions that have become intolerable, I believe the international community would be more secure and more stable if it were to force a sustainable and equitable solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, ensuring the Palestinians of their full political rights over their own territory including a fair settlement of Jerusalem and refugees' right of return, and thus of the security of Israel.

    We, the international community, would do well to ensure that Iraq be reintegrated into the normal circuit of international relations and institutions, rather than continuing to pursue a policy of exclusion and aggression towards this county, a policy that has killed hundreds of thousands of innocent and young people without weakening the regime that is being targeted.

  +-(1850)  

    Everyone in the House and in all democratic parliaments, I expect, agrees that we need to work together to eradicate terrorism and stop those who would perpetrate acts of terrorism, but I would add that it is even more important to address the causes and circumstances that often trigger such acts.

    With regards to this, I think that we must approach the problem in a rational manner even though emotions run high, to try to find long-term sustainable political solutions despite the fact that using force may prove tempting.

    What we need to do is organize a response that is vigorous yet democratic, based not on a simple polarization between good and bad, based not on so-called wars between civilizations, but instead on solutions that would affect the economy, safety, international relations and institutions, based on measures that are more inclusive of populations, zones and states that are currently marginalized in this era of frenzied globalization.

    In conclusion, I would like to express two wishes. First, that our government, as an ally of the United States, uses all its influence in order to persuade our giant neighbour to join forces with the international community in order to do something about the situations at the root of terrorism, rather than limit its action to reprisals which will result in other innocent victims and do nothing to improve security. Canadian support must not be a carte blanche for military adventurism without a lasting positive outcome. Instead, it should encourage action characterized by wisdom and patience, as the Prime Minister suggested today.

    My second wish is that we fight against and prevent any intolerance and aggressive behaviour directed at any cultural or religious community living in Canada, especially the Arab Muslim community. Pointing a finger of blame at any component of Canadian society for the acts of terrorism committed in New York on September 11 would be tantamount to engaging in our own form of terrorism within Canada. Any such action must be denounced and repressed in the name of those same values which we are defending internationally as well as at home.

    Over the past 50 years, Canada has won international respect for its participation in dozens of peacekeeping missions. If we have a few hundreds of millions of dollars to devote to an international effort following the events of September 11, I would like to see us continue to invest in peacebuilding.

    The UN has declared 2001 the Year of Dialogue among Civilizations. What has just happened in New York City and what might happen any time from now shows the extent to which our greatest problems may well arise not from too much such dialogue internationally but from profound shortcomings within our international, political and financial institutions, which are now preventing the establishment of a new international order based on transparency and equity.

    Eradicating terrorism is about more than wiping out a network of terrorists. It is about creating new conditions so that wealth is no longer concentrated in the hands of a few and so that the living conditions of the majority improve over the next few decades. It is our duty as Canadians to base our solidarity with the Americans on such a vision, which I believe corresponds to the deepest Canadian values vis-à-vis fairness and international co-operation.

  +-(1855)  

[English]

    It is our duty as Canadians to demonstrate our solidarity internationally according to our Canadian values.

[Translation]

+-

    Mr. Paul Crête (Kamouraska--Rivière-du-Loup--Témiscouata--Les Basques, BQ): Mr. Speaker, I have listened to the speech by the hon. member for Anjou--Rivière-des-Prairies with great interest.

    In fact, I share most of the ideas he has expressed on the reality of the situation. I find particularly important the emphasis placed on the matter of eradicating terrorism at its source, not just putting in place measures using unacceptable means to protect the richer and more developed societies from the situations now being deplored.

    I believe that the hon. member for Anjou--Rivière-des-Prairies did not, of course, say that the terrorists' means were acceptable ones. No one says that. However, having realized just how horrific the situation is, when an indepth analysis is made, I believe that a certain number of elements can be used. I agree with the hon. member on this.

    I would like to see him go a little further by responding to the following question.

    Ought there not to be another component to the federal government's strategy, one to ensure that Canada takes the huge diplomatic initiative that would enable it to inform the UN and other bodies that the major contribution by Canada in this connection is not necessarily a military one, an area in which our means are very limited, but rather perhaps some other area such as a contribution toward a long term solution to the problems, so that there will be no breeding grounds for terrorism left in the world?

    Does the hon. member for Anjou--Rivière-des-Prairies share this point of view?

+-

    Mr. Yvon Charbonneau: Mr. Speaker, it is in fact an action our government has taken that is already underway and that, I hope, will continue to expand.

    Our government, our Prime Minister and a number of ministers are involved in ongoing discussions with their counterparts in international organizations they belong to. We realized, from hearing the viewpoint of a number of heads of European countries, that there is a general feeling totally along the lines of what the Canadian Prime Minister said today, namely that we must act wisely and patiently, that it will take time and that a variety of complementary components will be involved.

    Military action is not excluded a priori, but what is the real solution to this type of situation where we do not really know where the enemy is? Who is the enemy, where is it hiding out, how is it organized? We have no idea, unlike in the case of Pearl Harbor, which has often been cited and in which we knew very well who was the cause. Today, we have no idea.

    So, the international action currently in progress to which the government is contributing could result in a review of all international relations and institutions in which we all participate, in an effort to come up with a set of measures, which affect not only security and information but also certain economic provisions and certain programs for co-operation in such a way that they provide the solution to conflicts that are currently smouldering away internationally and that therefore are a breeding ground for acts of terrorism.

    I think this action sought by my colleague in opposition will take on even greater proportions now.

  +-(1900)  

[English]

+-

    Mr. Jason Kenney (Calgary Southeast, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, I am befuddled and shocked to hear this kind of speech today in the present context. The member said this moment does not represent a polarization between good and evil. If deliberately killing what was an intended target of tens of thousands of people is not evil, if we cannot call evil by its name, then what is evil? If this is not a moment of moral clarity that should guide our actions then what would be?

    The member and many of his colleagues talk about international institutions, diplomacy and equity as though the terrorists are the voice of economic deprivation in the third world. Many of these terrorists are well educated professionals from western universities. Some of them are very wealthy. They are financed by a billionaire. This is not about economic equity.

    The member says we do not know what our enemy is. Let us call it by its name. The enemy is radical, extreme Islamism. It is not Islam or Muslims, but a radical political movement among a small minority of Muslims in some parts of the world. Let us call it by its name. We know what it is. Let us not be coy about it.

    The member talks about bringing Iraq into the international community. There is a reason why Iraq is under embargo. It could release itself from the embargoes if it were to give credible commitments to the international community that it does not have a program to produce weapons of mass destruction.

    Does the member not understand that the next major attack will not be a suicide plane? It could very well be a nuclear or biological weapon produced in Iraq or countries like it. Does he not understand the moral and strategic gravity of the situation? Rather than talking about vague concepts of international equity, will he not join the rest--

+-

    The Deputy Speaker: Order, please. We want to give the hon. member for Anjou--Rivière-des-Prairies a few moments to respond.

[Translation]

+-

    Mr. Yvon Charbonneau: Mr. Speaker, the condemnation of terrorism was on a par with that expressed today by our Prime Minister; I need not come back to that. It was very clear. Condemnation has been universal. I share in it, as does our government.

    As concerns the rest of the question, the opposition member should understand that terrorists may organize in certain parts of the world with the support of people who have no idea they are living in a breeding ground for terrorists. The member opposite should understand a simple concept: there is a lot of suffering in areas in the world, which are familiar with terrorism from having endured it at the hands of their neighbours or major powers. The member opposite may not know what terrorism is, but they do.

    Terrorist organizations take root in these areas and from there strike the United States. If it were possible to resolve some of the international situations that continue to kill thousands of innocents, we would snuff out a number of terrorist organizations. This is what the member opposite should understand.

  +-(1905)  

[English]

+-

    Mr. Stephen Owen (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, there has been no motion this year, nor will there be, of such importance as the one we are debating today. I am pleased to stand to speak to it.

    In my short time in parliament I have never been so proud to be a member of the House of Commons, to observe the debate and the unanimity that have been expressed regarding the horror of the immense evil that has been perpetrated on the United States and, through that horror, on the people of the world.

    I know that the citizens of Vancouver Quadra whom I have the honour to represent will join me in expressing absolute sorrow for the people of the United States and the families of the victims of this horrible evil.

    The Prime Minister and many members in the House today have stated that we as Canadians will stand by the Americans and with our allies around the world for peace and to fight terrorism every way we can. However I would caution that we take great care in addressing this immense evil. It is extremely complicated and we should take care not to act indiscriminately.

    I will mention three aspects of terrorism that have been mentioned in one way or another today, though perhaps not all at once.

    First and most important, terrorism has become a global issue. It is no longer a matter of isolated acts however immense. These are connected acts. They are connected not only to other acts of terrorism but have, in their great magnitude, become a threat to the sovereignty and security of states. That makes them acts of war. The extreme act we saw on September 11 brings to our attention much more vividly what we are confronted with behind the scenes and around the world.

    Second, global issues are by definition linked to other global issues. They are not only borderless; they are linked. To suggest, as has the member opposite, that there are no links between terrorism, poverty, environmental degradation, sickness or human rights abuses is not to be paying attention to what is going on in the world.

    These are global issues. This is globalization writ large. Globalization is not simply about spreading our goods from the western countries around the world. Globalization has a reverse thrust, and terrorism is the thrust we are feeling. Terrorism is with us. It is linked to poverty, sickness, human rights abuses and autocratic governments that abuse their citizens.

    We must not close our eyes to that. We must deal with those as a unit or we will never deal with terrorism. To suggest, as some have, that the root causes of evil need not be attended to is to miss the point.

    Third is the concept of human security. Perhaps no contribution to the world that Canada has made in the last 10 years is greater than our expression and definition of the concept of human security.

    I will speak about human security in the sense of terrorism and democracy. Terrorism is, by definition, indiscriminate violence. That is what spreads terror. It is carried out indiscriminately in populations with no particular target where no one can feel safe.

    In our response to terrorism we must be immensely cautious not to respond indiscriminately. We in a democracy pride ourselves in and benefit daily from the rule of law. It is the essence and fundamental notion of democracy. In responding to acts of violence inside our society we are bound by our criminal law to stringent rules of investigation, charge, criminal procedure and sentencing.

    This attack has been described as war. It is war when it is of this magnitude and this widespread around the world, as terrorism is. It is war against the security and sovereignty of nations.

  +-(1910)  

    There are rules of law for war as well. We must be extremely cautious to stay within them when we plan and execute our cautious response.

    One of the greatest injustices and horrors of the 20th century was the fact that at the beginning of the century 80% to 90% of the victims of war were actually members of armed forces and 20% were civilians. By the end of the century that had been reversed and nearly 90% of casualties in civil strife and military action were civilians. We must be immensely careful that in our response we do not act indiscriminately and unnecessarily harm civilians and take civilian lives.

    The people who perpetrate the evil of terrorism draw some of their recruits from the privileged. Some are unstable but many are drawn through the roots of despair. If anyone suggests otherwise they have not observed what happens in impoverished communities of despair and stinking refugee camps that have intergenerational hopelessness.

    In our society we know that suicide rates among youth are very high in impoverished communities. If they are facing intergenerational despair, looking into the future with no hope and are about to commit suicide, that is the ultimate act of despair as a youth. If someone comes to them with a gun and a martyr ethic or a warrior ethic and says, “Do not waste your life; be a martyr”, that is a breeding ground for violence. We cannot ignore that, even as we recognize that there are other sources of this evil.

    Finally I would like to speak briefly about the nature of terrorism. It is extremely complex. As we plan what will be an immensely complicated and expensive response, we must clearly understand the nature and how unconventional this enemy is. It is diverse yet it is networked and universal. It conducts its vicious acts in cells that then pull apart and are not traced back to obvious sources.

    We have to increase our investigative capacity, our intelligence gathering capacity, our willingness and our ability to co-ordinate activities and share information across borders with our allies, and we have to be in this for the long haul.

    Let us remember this is a global issue and it must be approached as such. It must be approached with reference to other global issues with which it is linked. Let us remember as well that what is at risk is our democracy. We must not risk the fundamental nature of our democracy which is the rule of law in our response.

    Finally, we must appreciate the complexity of what we are faced with and be willing, together with our allies and perhaps with the expenditure of resources we have not yet dreamed of, to increase our capacity to secure our way of life and to assist our allies to secure theirs.

    We must ensure that we share the fruits of our democracy with people around the world because, as we have noted throughout our democratic history, our democracy and justice are indivisible. As we look at a global world and the global issues that surround us, that indivisibility is becoming clearer to maintain universally and not simply within our privileged borders.

+-

    Mr. John Herron (Fundy—Royal, PC/DR): Mr. Speaker, I thank the government member for his comments. I would like to take this opportunity to express on behalf of the residents of Fundy--Royal our deepest and most sincere condolences to those individuals who lost families, friends and co-workers in the regions of Washington and New York. I would also like to share in the outrage of the situation that has taken place.

    The hon. member stated that terrorism did not discriminate in terms of its victims. We know that over the coming days and weeks we will be trying to ferret out those individuals who were responsible for this heinous event.

    One group of individuals, firefighters, played a role in a positive and heroic way by going into a very precarious situation in a very difficult environment. Many of those individuals who put their lives on the line were lost.

    My question for the hon. member reflects on his comments regarding intelligence gathering. There are a lot of industrialized western nations that do not do this as well as they could or should. Does the hon. member feel that the RCMP, CSIS and the Department of Citizenship and Immigration need to have a more integrated system?

  +-(1915)  

+-

    Mr. Stephen Owen: Mr. Speaker, I thank the hon. member for his observations and his question. In the face of this horror and this potential danger in the future Canada needs to expend greater resources on intelligence and even within the police community itself to become much more effective at sharing information.

    The nature of terrorism is linked to and is very similar to the nature of organized crime in its universal reach, in its neglect of borders and its absolute viciousness, and in its network structure, its operation through cells and its sharing of information.

    Enforcement agencies and intelligence gathering agencies in the western world have not kept up in terms of the willingness of terrorist groups and organized crime to share information with each other on a need to know basis through cells and individual operations. They are way ahead of us in the use of technology and in the sophistication of their structures. We will have to mimic some of those dynamics if we are to effectively combat them.

    Already in this country law enforcement agencies are starting to adapt that great integrated approach to sharing information, to pooling resources together on operations and to co-ordinating their efforts. That is an immensely important advance. It maintains for combating terrorism just as it does to organized crime.

+-

    Mr. Jason Kenney (Calgary Southeast, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, the member has echoed in a different way what many of his colleagues have said, which is essentially that this is a complex issue where good and evil do not apply. We have to focus on root causes like economics and exercise restraint in any response. I do not hear anything about a serious appreciation of the common enemy that we are facing.

    Does the member not understand that the people who launched this attack are motivated by two things: a ferocious anti-Semitism and a malevolent hatred for all things western because of the perceived spiritual decadence of our civilization? This is not an economic or political project in the way that we would normally conceive one.

    Does he not understand that these so-called international solutions of which he is speaking are no solution when one is staring down the muzzle of a barrel of a gun which is going to kill people?

+-

    Mr. Stephen Owen: Mr. Speaker, I thank the hon. member for his observation. However accurate the hon. member might be in certain situations, he is far too narrowly focused.

    Of course there are groups exactly as he described that are bent only on evil for matters unrelated to poverty, human rights abuses or whatever. However we must all be extremely careful to realize that this is a much broader problem than this particular act of evil.

    If we do not appreciate the breadth of the problem then we will not deal with the force and scope of it.

  +-(1920)  

+-

    Mr. Rahim Jaffer (Edmonton—Strathcona, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, I rise today on this solemn occasion to contribute to this historic debate. I would like to start by expressing my sincere condolences to those thousands of victims and their families whose lives are forever changed as a result of the horrific and cowardly acts of terror.

    The victims are from all races and creeds. They were all innocently going about their daily lives when the terrorists struck. I offer these condolences on behalf of the people of Edmonton--Strathcona whom I have the privilege of representing in the House of Commons.

    As the only Muslim elected to parliament in Canada, I want to extend my condolences on behalf of the Canadian Muslim community. I feel a responsibility to clarify to the Canadian people what the religion of Islam is about. There are some Canadians who believe that the acts carried out by the terrorists were sanctioned or dictated by Islamic law. In reality these were criminal acts of political terrorism by cowardly extremists in direct contravention of Islamic law.

    The term Islam means peace. Muslims around the world believe that peace and tolerance are the very essence of faith. The terrorists who attacked the Pentagon and the World Trade Center have violated the Holy Koran and Islamic values.

    A common Muslim greeting, as-Salam-u-Alaikum, means may peace be upon you. The word jihad simply means that each individual must strive to be the best he or she can be.

    For example, Muslims are in an internal struggle to prevent themselves from committing bad deeds. Jihad does not mean a physical holy war against other human beings as has been frequently said in the media. Therefore committing violent acts against the innocent is not part of jihad but rather is a sin against the Holy Koran. There is no mention in the Holy Koran about committing violent acts against non-Muslims.

    Media reports have identified the terrorists who attacked the World Trade Center and the Pentagon to be Islamic. However their motives were not in keeping with Islam. Timothy McVeigh was a Christian, but his attack on the U.S. government buildings in Oklahoma City was not motivated by Christian beliefs. Deranged people carried out all these deplorable political acts of terrorism.

    In Muslim mosques across Canada and other countries prayers have been held for the victims of the September 11 terrorist attack. Muslim groups across Canada such as the Islamic Supreme Council of Canada and Muslims Against Terrorism have condemned the attack because it goes against our values of peace and harmony.

    I implore all Canadians to unite in this time of crisis and fortify our strength of diversity. We are a multicultural nation, the envy of the world, and as such we must collectively fight terrorism by working together to protect our freedom.

    Most of us in the House travelled from different parts of the country to get here. In the airports we witnessed a sense of uneasiness and vulnerability on the faces of those travelling with us. Canadians are looking to us, their elected leaders, for a response to the acts of atrocity. We need legislation to tighten up the loopholes that have aided the cause of terrorism on Canadian soil.

    I am not here today to point fingers and lay blame. I believe that we must follow the example of our American neighbours and put aside partisan differences to address the immediate security needs of Canadians. The government opposite must address the deficiencies present in its national security policy. To do so is not admitting culpability but rather accepting the responsibility of protecting the lives and livelihood of Canadians.

    Canadians watched in horror as the terrorist attacks were carried out on the United States. It struck at the heart of our sense of morality and freedom. However what amplified the horror was the possibility that some of these evil men had travelled through Canada on their journey.

    This news is not surprising, given the numerous reports highlighting the presence of terrorist organizations in Canada and the ease with which they abuse our humanitarian initiatives to settle refugees. The Prime Minister's face saving response last week that there is no need to revisit our security policies was unacceptable.

    As a newly appointed critic for Canada Customs and Revenue Agency I will address the role of Revenue Canada in the fight against terrorism. We are a trading nation. As a result of NAFTA over $1 billion a day crosses the U.S.-Canada border. This activity has fuelled our economy, sustained job growth and allowed Canadian families to prosper.

    National revenues required to fund tax cuts, health care, education spending and debt reduction are contingent upon our trading relationship with the United States.

  +-(1925)  

    In what seemed to be a veiled message to Canada, U.S. Secretary of State Colin Powell stated last week:

--some nations need to be more vigilant against terrorism at their borders if they want their relationship with the U.S. to remain the same. For those nations thatwe believe can do a better job of policing their borders, of going after this kind of activity, we're going to work with them. We're gonna make it clear to them that this will be a standard against which they're measured with respect to their relationship with the United States--

    One measure available to the U.S. is to implement section 110 of the Illegal Immigration Reform and Immigrant Responsibility Act of 1996. This initiative implements mandatory entrance and exit checks at the U.S. border crossings. In effect, all foreign nationals, including Canadians, would be required to register when entering and exiting the United States.

    The U.S. has postponed implementing section 110 until adequate technology can be developed to expedite this process with minimal delays. This week commercial traffic attempting to enter the United States from border crossings in the Niagara region are experiencing 9 to 12 hour waits. These extreme measures may become the norm if the government does not take action to rectify our border security.

    There was much ado this summer about an open border with the United States. This concept was being entertained by a desire on the part of the U.S. and Canadian industry to minimize the encumbrance of border security in order to maximize the efficiency of moving people, products and capital across our border. Yet from a national security perspective, we must ensure that those people, products and capital entering Canada are not economic, medical or criminal risks.

    The growing success of the NAFTA relationship in conjunction with the emergence of e-commerce and the growing needs of just in time manufacturing have put increased pressure on our border crossings.

    The Canada-United States accord on our shared border was signed in 1995. Its goal had four key points: to promote international trade, to streamline processes for legitimate travellers and commercial goods, to provide enhanced protection against drug smuggling and the illegal entrance of people, and to reduce costs for both governments.

    One response to this accord is Bill S-23 which is about to be introduced in this House. Bill S-23 includes many electronic systems used to expedite and track cross border commercial traffic. I believe these initiatives can only be entertained once the integrity of our borders is ascertained.

    Bringing to light the inadequacies of Canada's national security is a wake-up call in the midst of a nightmare unfolding on the east coast of the United States. Canadians may not be aware of our porous borders; however every terrorist organization, drug cartel and organized crime operation in the world is fully aware of these deficiencies and have been exploiting them for years. Canada's porous border is by no means a reflection of the men and women who serve as customs officers. It is the reality of naive and irresponsible government policy. A philosophical shift in Liberal policy is required.

    In 1994 Bill C-7 moved customs from a security mandate to the Department of National Revenue. Its prime objective is to recover tax and duty revenue for the crown. We must give our customs officers the tools, resources and the mandate required to protect our borders from those who are intent on destruction. If Canada is not willing to increase its standard of national security, the United States will not be willing to jeopardize the safety and security of the American people by continuing an undefended border with Canada. Such a decision will have an incredible impact on our economy.

    I believe that Canada must take the lead in implementing a continental security agreement among NAFTA partners, particularly with the United States. This must include shared intelligence, including exit and entrance data and criminal profiling. Such an agreement is not an erosion of our cultural identity or our national sovereignty, as some would have us believe. It would serve to protect our trading and diplomatic relationship with the U.S. thereby serving to stabilize our economy and protect our citizens.

    The federal government must first of all admit that there is a problem of terrorist activity in Canada and resolve to work with the United States in a legitimate partnership to secure our borders and protect our citizens and economies from future attack. The government's only response to terrorism thus far has been Bill C-16 which states that those Canadian charities found to be financially aiding terrorist organizations will be stripped of their charitable status. This is a baby step in the marathon fight to eradicate terrorism. Canadians expect much broader and tougher legislation to follow.

    In closing, I would like to repeat my appeal to Canadians to unite during this time of crisis and embrace the strength of our diversity. Our Islamic neighbours are bearing a double burden. Not only are we grieving over the horrendous loss of life, we are bearing the burden of misplaced blame upon our community.

  +-(1930)  

+-

    Hon. Wayne Easter (Malpeque, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, to be quite honest, I am really surprised at the rhetoric from the member for Edmonton--Strathcona in this debate. It was a rant against the government and tried to make the argument on porous borders. He talked a fair bit about the integrity of the border and how porous the borders were.

    I would suggest in all seriousness that maybe the member opposite is a little like his leader who did not know which way Niagara Falls flowed. Could he lay out where he gets his facts? Is it not true that when people are going from Canada into the United States that they have to go through United States customs and border controls? If there is a problem in terms of people entering the United States, it is not Canada that is creating the problem, it is a problem on the United States border itself.

    I am really surprised that the member would rise with that kind of rhetoric because that is not where the problem is.

+-

    Mr. Rahim Jaffer: Mr. Speaker, I am quite shocked to see the hon. member actually now starting to place blame at the feet of the United States. When I started my speech, what I said I would be doing was identifying potential problems that we have in our current system, especially at borders and where we can actually improve the situation to make sure that not only the lives and security of Canadians are protected but that also if we can, help our biggest trading partner, the United States.

    There have been many reports here in Canada that have identified this problem. Even customs officials themselves are saying that they do not have the resources to be able to do the proper work to be able to check the backgrounds of many people coming into this country. In fact, when they come to this country and while they are here, there are numerous things that they can do to actually find the proper paperwork before they enter the U.S.

    This is a major problem and I am shocked that the hon. member, instead of trying to find solutions as we have been doing here in the official opposition, now is trying to point fingers at the United States saying they are the ones to blame. It is just outrageous.

[Translation]

+-

    Mr. Réal Ménard (Hochelaga—Maisonneuve, BQ): Mr. Speaker, it is a pleasure to see you again. First, I am in partial agreement with our colleague's comments in which he invites us to demonstrate tolerance and to accept the differences to be found in our society. I know that he himself is very open-minded. However, I am inclined to warn him, gently, about his comments regarding the need to tighten up our borders. There is a very fine and subtle distinction between a call for stricter border controls and a call to halt immigration.

    I think our colleague will agree with us in saying that this problem does not stem from immigration. We must remind the government that this situation requires a global vision. There are a certain number of centres of tension around the world. If we cannot defuse these centres of tension, then there will be terrorist acts and many countries will have to deal with the consequences.

    Will our colleague make a clear statement to the effect that he is not establishing a link between his wish to strengthen border controls and a wish to stem or stop the flow of immigration.

+-

    Mr. Rahim Jaffer: Mr. Speaker, I would like to thank my colleague for his question. I would like to explain in clear terms that my party is very proud of immigrants and hopes that Canada will be able receive even more immigrants. However, there are some real security problems and other related problems that we must debate here in the House.

[English]

    I want to be clear and say that the official opposition has always been pro immigration, pro refugee. Coming to this country as a refugee, I am very sensitive to that. In talking about tolerance, when I talked about the idea of the conflict that is taking place, the terrorism, the idea of trying to be tolerant of all communities is something I think Canadians exemplify to the world.

    When it comes to immigration, I have been on the record as calling for even more immigration. I try to push that debate in many cases among my colleagues here in the House and elsewhere. But we do have to do the proper security checks. That is really all we are trying to say. There are people who potentially abuse our system. We need to put an end to it. By no means is that calling for restricting immigration, restricting refugees or anything along those lines. If anything, we would like to encourage it.

  +-(1935)  

+-

    Mr. Preston Manning (Calgary Southwest, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, among the family of free and democratic nations, the ties that bind the hearts of Canadians to the hearts of the people of the United States are among the strongest in the world. It is therefore entirely fitting that members of the House should meet today in response to the calculated and vicious terrorist attack on the people of the United States last week.

    We join with our Prime Minister and all members of the House in offering our prayers and heartfelt sympathies to the families of the victims and our pledge of support for whatever actions are required to bring the terrorists and those who aid them and shelter them to justice.

    My youngest daughter works in the financial district of the city of New York. For almost an hour after the first terrorist attack, our family waited frantically for that phone call to say that she was safe. Mercifully for us that call came, but we can only imagine the pain and heartache of those families, those moms and dads, sons and daughters and grandparents for whom the calls never came.

    I have sat here all day and I have heard a great outpouring of feelings and words of sympathy for our American friends. The challenge for us is to translate our feelings and our words into decisions and actions that will make a difference in the days ahead. Almost all of us are agreed that something needs to change as a result of the enormous sacrifice of innocent lives on September 11. In fact we dishonour the memory of the dead and the suffering of the innocent if some fundamental change for the better does not occur as a result of these events.

    What should these changes be and how should we ourselves change? It is self-evident that we in free and democratic societies must change our approach to personal, national and international security. A starting point for us in Canada, as many members have pointed out, will be to overhaul our system for screening persons entering our country from abroad, particularly those from countries known to provide a safe harbour for terrorists. A starting point for those responsible for security and intelligence systems in the free world will be to renew efforts to focus those systems on the new security dangers of the present and the future, such as international terrorism, as distinct from the security threats of the past cold war era.

    The challenge in all of this will be to increase our capacity to anticipate, detect, deter and destroy the activities of international terrorists without in the process crippling or destroying the very freedoms and civil liberties we seek to protect and advance in the face of terrorism. However as we witnessed at the memorial services held last Thursday, in particular those held in St. Paul's Cathedral in London and the National Cathedral in Washington, there is a spiritual dimension to personal, national and international security which I feel we Canadians should not ignore.

    It is my personal conviction that our response to the tragic events of September 11 will be transitory and incomplete if it does not result in a fundamental change in our attitudes and actions with respect to good and evil itself.

    I know that by venturing into this ground, one is on dangerous ground in this country. We in this country and in the House shy away from publicly embracing the spiritual realities of life. In our secular and pluralistic society we seem incapable of even discussing, let alone taking direction, from Canada's spiritual heritage or clear standards of right and wrong based upon it. We are too fearful of being misunderstood and thereby dividing rather than uniting all people.

  +-(1940)  

    However, surely in the stark contrast between the black ashes of the World Trade Center and the light that shines from the efforts of thousands of ordinary Americans to aid and comfort the wounded and the grief-stricken, we can see and agree upon certain moral distinctives to guide us in the day ahead: that there is such a thing as evil in human nature and in our world, conditions and actions that result in the crippling and destruction of human life; that there is also such a thing as good in this world, even good that can come out of evil, actions motivated by love that result in the protection and nourishment of human life; and, most importantly, that good can triumph over evil. For that to happen we need to seek deliverance from its presence in our own lives and situations, resist its practice by others and pursue the good for ourselves and all mankind.

    We have promised our American friends that our prayers are with them. We use that phrase very glibly. What should be the content of those prayers for this promise to be more than idle words?

    Historically our nations, particularly in times of war and disaster, and that includes this nation, have sought deliverance from evil and the strength to do good through faith in the justice and grace of God.

    My prayer is that the tragedy of September 11, 2001 will lead us to do so again, that our spiritual leaders will speak the truth in love or not at all and that our political leaders will be given the wisdom to fashion our response to terrorism and its roots in the light of the moral imperatives which this tragedy itself illuminates.

    May we be delivered from the evils of false religion and indiscriminate revenge, inspired to new heights and depths of compassion for all those who suffer, while relentlessly pursuing justice for those who practice terror. So help us God.

+-

    Mr. Paul Szabo (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Public Works and Government Services, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, often today the suggestion has been made, as the member has just made in his speech, that one of the responsive moves that Canada should take would be to improve the screening of refugees seeking to obtain status in Canada.

    The news reports today such as in the Globe and Mail, said there was no evidence of a Canadian link. In fact, there is no information whatsoever that would link anyone from Canada or that planned strikes came from Canada. None of that information has come forward.

    Today I personally spoke with the Minister of Foreign Affairs and he confirmed to me, in communications with Colin Powell, that there was no link between Canadian persons and the bombings and the tragedy that occurred.

    In light of the fact that there is no Canadian linkage demonstrated or declared, why is the member suggesting that the appropriate response here, among other things, would be better screening? How does he justify that statement?

+-

    Mr. Preston Manning: Mr. Speaker, it is self-evident that if we want to protect the security of the North American continent, we have to look at the people who come here, particularly from countries that harbour, aid and abet terrorists. Whether the link is established in this case or not that is still a protection we have to take.

    The other comment I would add is a more general one, but it is provoked by the hon. member's statement. Why do we always have to have a crisis before we exercise any leadership? Over 30 years ago, in 1970, Canada had the FLQ crisis with terrorism in Quebec. That was a miniscule crisis in relation to the one we are talking about, but the House brought into being the War Measures Act. The crisis was talked about as if it was war and we suspended the Canadian Bill of Rights.

    Prime Minister Trudeau after that event said to the House of Commons that we ought to overhaul the Canadian Criminal Code in order to make it more effective in fighting systematic terrorism, which was the word he used, and that we had to introduce special legislation to deal with terrorism as part of the modern world. That was over 30 years ago. Yet we have followed up on none of that.

    I suggest that maybe it takes this crisis to force us to improve our security in all the ways that have been suggested by members on this side of the House.

  +-(1945)  

+-

    Hon. Lorne Nystrom (Regina—Qu'Appelle, NDP): Mr. Speaker, some 30 years ago I was a member of this House when the War Measures Act was invoked. I remember the tremendous fear and tension at that time. I was one of 16 members who voted against the invocation of the act. My sentiment was that it was an overreaction at that time. The then leader of the opposition, Robert Stanfield, later on said that one of the mistakes he made was not opposing the invocation of the War Measures Act.

    I condemn wholeheartedly the terrorism that took place in New York and in Washington. We must spare no effort to hold those responsible for that crime and bring them to justice.

    We must also watch an overreaction. This is not a conventional situation and sometimes violence will breed more violence in terms of indiscriminate violence.

    Does member who just spoke have some concerns about overreaction and indiscriminate bombing, and the loss of many more civilian lives in places like Afghanistan if we are not careful?

+-

    Mr. Preston Manning: Mr. Speaker, I think all members of the House are concerned about committing evil in response to evil, which hardly solves the problem of evil.

    I suggest, and this is one of the historic teachings of the Christian faith, that if we take seriously our asking for a deliverance from evil in our own lives and situations, that itself is a restraint against going too far or committing evil against others.

    That combination of being conscious of the reality of evil in our own society, in our own tendencies and in our own reactions and being aware of that, but also vigorously pursuing evil in others, can lead to justice which is what we are looking for in this situation.

+-

    Ms. Albina Guarnieri (Mississauga East, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, six days ago the most devastating attack ever against the free world rendered our world far less free. No longer are we free to fly without a credible fear of hijacking, no longer are we free to travel anywhere any time without extended delays at the border or security check-ins.

    We are no longer free to presume that everyone who enters our country is here to pursue a better life. We are definitely no longer free to take for granted the role of our firefighters and police officers, some of whom from my region have gone to New York to help at the scene.

    The United States has paid an enormous price for leading the free world. Thousands of people left for work last Tuesday worrying only about their job, the economy and family bills. Horror and death awaited so many who had no idea that they were at war. Thousands of family members wait and hope. Time is needed to mourn the dead and then the free world must act to protect the living.

    The terrible tragedy and loss of life in New York has been called an attack on America, but Canada is far from immune to the virus of terrorism that is infecting the globe.

    For the first time terrorism from the Middle East has drawn the blood of civilians in the United States. We have seen suicide attacks against civilian target groups in Israel, Egypt and in western Europe. We have even seen an Egyptian airliner take off from New York and then be driven into the sea by a suicidal pilot, again not that long ago. For some reason we thought we were safe in North America. Terrorism was viewed as a distant threat that was only raised by alarmists.

    Today we realize that our security was an illusion. We were protected more by chance than by choice. Now, as Dick Cheney said yesterday, we would be absolute fools to not protect ourselves from the credible threat that we now know has always existed.

    Canadians quickly understood that the threat against the United States could quickly find Canadian targets in range. I know that within hours of the attack at least one major Canadian company convened a meeting to discuss whether it might also be a target before continuing its Toronto operations. Simply remaining at work was now considered to pose enough risk that it was at least worthy of discussion at the highest levels.

    Today Canadians are faced with a disturbing choice. We can defy the goals of the terrorists who resist constraints to our freedom, changes to our laws and stifling security measures. Alternatively, we can accept that our world has changed and our open and almost casual concept of national security is now a threat to our freedom and no longer its hallmark.

    President Bush has repeatedly said that the United States is already at war, but this is a war where people are in fact the principal weapons. The men responsible for last Tuesday's tragedy brought only themselves to North America. Immigration would have found nothing in their bags or backgrounds to stop many from entering the country. Yet these men were the most dangerous of weapons, and efforts to keep them out of North America will be the top priority of U.S. law enforcement for the foreseeable future.

    The restrictions on the U.S. border to Canada will likely be proportional to the laxness that Americans perceive in our entry requirements. With our country entirely dependent on the free movement of goods across the U.S. border, tougher border security could become the greatest trade barrier we have ever faced. If American plants cannot rely on Canadian shipments getting across the border on time, they will simply switch suppliers with immense consequences.

    To prevent this hardship, Canada must demonstrate to the United States that it would be as hard or harder for a terrorist to get into Canada than to go directly to the United States. This inevitably requires changes to our immigration, refugee and visitor visa policies.

  +-(1950)  

    We know that the vast majority of immigrants and visitors to Canada come from countries where no realistic terrorist risk exists or has ever existed. We must make sure the current crisis does not restrict the flow of talent, skills and investment from new immigrants on whom we rely for so much of our growth. As well, we must not simply cut off Canadian citizens from their relatives abroad through the widespread denial of visitors permits.

    We already have very restrictive visa rules when it comes to people who it is feared will stay and work in Canada. Among the targets of deportation in recent months was a Polish family who had come here, built a business, employed six people and never taken a dime from our social services. Their deportation, while devastating for the children involved, was also a loss for Canada as good, contributing business people were lost.

    Conversely, a terrorist by the name of Ressam was never deported and would still be here were it not for U.S. border guards finding explosives in his trunk. We clearly need to change our focus.

    It is more than apparent that air travel to Canada from overseas will need to be subject to meaningful security measures. The fact that people can arrive at Pearson airport without any documentation and claim refugee status is an indication of the level of security we impose overseas.

    Clearly no one can now be allowed to board a plane bound for Canada without at least a cursory security check, and everyone will need documentation. We must now consider foreign airports as entry points into Canada and establish immigration security checkpoints, much like the United States has at Pearson airport today.

    These measures will not make us safe. We cannot stop a determined person from getting to Canada or the United States, but at least it must be a robust and comprehensive effort.

    The aftermath of the World Trade Center has brought into question the respect with which we treat our own emergency personnel. In many policy debates of late, firefighters and police officers have too often been treated as regular workers whose pay and pensions must be restricted because every other group of workers would expect the same.

    In New York we saw that the job of police and fire crews is not like any other job. While people with other jobs fled down the stairs of the World Trade Center to safety, firefighters were racing up into harm's way and indeed their own deaths.

    It is common to salute the bravery and sacrifice of firefighters and police at times of great crisis when their lives are lost in great numbers. I call on members of the House to demonstrate the same respect to the thousands of Canadians who have the courage to sign up to be the first at the scene of any disaster and whose willingness to risk all keeps the rest of us safe.

    The attack on America touched every Canadian. We saw the trauma. We shared the fear. We shared the loss and we learned an important lesson. We learned that security that is taken for granted can be taken away.

  +-(1955)  

+-

    Mr. Gerald Keddy (South Shore, PC/DR): Mr. Speaker, sometimes it is not a bad thing to have a bit of laughter or the occasional less than sombre moment in a debate, but unfortunately this is a very solemn and sombre occasion.

    I appreciate very much the comments of the member from Mississauga who just spoke, especially with regard to the way we treat police officers and firefighters. All emergency response personnel, whether ambulance drivers, firefighters, police officers or anyone who is a first responder, take upon themselves a job where they do not know what to expect when they get up in the morning. They volunteer to work diligently on our behalf and save lives if that may be, but they do not volunteer to lose their own.

    Our hearts immediately go out to those groups and their families. However more importantly, now that we are left with the result of this horrific event, what will we as a parliament do about it?

    My question to the member is whether we have the resolve. This is not an easy task we have started upon. This is a hard and arduous trail. I do not think anyone in the House fully understands the extent and difficulty of the journey. Does the member think the government will have the clear resolve--

+-

    The Acting Speaker (Mr. Bélair): The hon. member for Mississauga East.

+-

    Ms. Albina Guarnieri: Mr. Speaker, I thank the hon. member for his comments. There is no doubt in my mind that the government must resolve to fulfill its commitment to eradicating terrorism. We heard earlier from the former solicitor general who said the government has a responsibility. We have heard from the parliamentary secretary to the justice minister who said there will be a comprehensive plan in place to deal with terrorism. I think the collective will of the House will forge the right policies for the country.

    There is no doubt in my mind that Canadians have had an illusion shattered in recent days and will demand and expect a robust response from their government and their parliament.

  +-(2000)  

+-

    Mr. Gerald Keddy (South Shore, PC/DR): Mr. Speaker, I will use the two minutes left to draw attention, as the hon. member alluded to earlier, to fire departments, police departments and emergency personnel.

    In the community of New Ross where I live there was recently a severe accident involving a fire truck. Four firefighters were seriously injured. One of those who was seriously injured, Lionel Russell, just got out of the hospital. That is the type of contribution that ordinary citizens and volunteer firefighters make to society and to Canada every day of their lives. They get up in the morning and do not know what to expect that day, but are willing to take on the unexpected if it is called upon. We take that too much for granted.

    It is time we looked at ways to not only combat terrorism, which is what the debate is about, but to support our police officers and volunteer firefighters at home.

+-

    Ms. Albina Guarnieri (Mississauga East, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, what is left to say to that comment but ditto? I could not agree more. I think the House will certainly find a way to ensure that our police officers and firefighters are suitably equipped to fight the ordeals and challenges that we face ahead.

+-

    Mr. Paul Szabo (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Public Works and Government Services, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, on September 11 our attention, like that of many people around the world, was grabbed by events which were horrific. The images are seared into our memories for all time. Members will reflect on images of airplanes, buildings, fire and destruction. However it was not until we saw the people that we fully understood the horror that the terrorism had caused for many people.

    Once the pictures were focused we saw images of people in windows seeking help and not knowing what to do. We saw images of people jumping out of buildings to avoid burning to death. There was no decision to make; it was a responsive reaction.

    It was the images of people in the streets searching for their loved ones and trying to get a clue that started to sear into our memories just how devastating the big picture had been to real people. There are many people missing, most of whom will never be found. Most of those people will never have any more presence in the lives of their loved ones. Can members imagine having someone in their lives just cease to exist? It is a very painful experience, I am sure.

    Today we are having a debate. Members have been very eloquent in expressing heartfelt condolences to the families of the victims and to our neighbours, the United States of America. They have made kind and encouraging comments about our relationship and the strength of our friendship and have given credit for leadership on all sides. Many good things have been said here that I think bode well for continued co-operation and good work between our countries.

    The American people have also expressed their gratitude on many occasions for the support of the Canadian people during the crisis, whether for taking care of them when their planes had to land at Canadian airports or for other support we have given.

    It is important for many members who speak here to be able to say we share the pain. We also share the values and want to protect them. This is the reason we are considering measured and appropriate responses.

    I also want to bring special mention to the issue of public safety officers: firefighters, police officers, medics, paramedics and all the volunteers who come into a situation where there are no questions asked. They are trained and they respond instinctively. It is what they do.

    We know that a lot of people lost their lives: maybe a couple of hundred firefighters, as many as a hundred police officers, and who knows how many others? It will be a long time before we know the full extent of it.

  +-(2005)  

    Public safety officers have had the very kind support of this place with regard to providing support for initiatives such as a public safety officers' compensation fund, for improving the pension accrual rates because the life expectancy of firefighters is not as good as the national average, to improving transportation of dangerous materials provisions so that there is a better protection of the environment and better opportunities for our public safety officers to safeguard themselves.

    I am still very concerned. When there are searing fires, like the ones in New York and in the Pentagon in Washington, we do not know what happens to the air, such as toxicity created by toxic acids. However, people are still working there even as we speak, continuing and hoping to find survivors. This is the job they were trained to do. They continue to put their health at risk to do that job.

    I also want to say a very special thanks to our public safety officers and all those members of the International Association of Firefighters who have been so good in keeping us informed when they visit us each year.

    I took the opportunity to visit the web. I wanted to know more about Afghanistan. People were talking about Osama bin Laden, about terrorists, about the Taliban and a holy war. I did not know very much about the country.

    Afghanistan is surrounded by Pakistan, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan, Turkmenistan and Iran. It is about the size of the province of Ontario and has 25 million people. There is nothing terribly unusual about that except of that 25 million people, 42% are under 15 years of age. Only 2.7% are over 65 years of age.

    The life expectancy of a person in Afghanistan is about 46 years of age compared to 82 years of age for a woman in Canada and 78 years for a man in Canada. Only about 4% of their land is arable. They are also are the largest producer of opium in the world.

    When I think of those basic facts, I understand that it is an environment in which desperation can occur. It is an environment that I think also exists in a number of other countries around the world where terrorism has its roots.

    Today we have talked about our condolences and about our commitment to our friend and neighbour the United States and our NATO allies. We have also talked about measured response and appropriate response.

    People who have talked to me about this issue have talked with caution and concern about escalation and about biological or chemical warfare. We have not touched this yet in terms of terrorist activities. There is a real concern about that. I think it is one of the reasons why responsible governments have to be very careful to take a measured and appropriate response that does not necessarily follow the provisions of any arbitrariness of an eye for an eye or any other kind of arbitrary approach.

    We are talking about a war on terrorism much like we talk about the war on drugs. It has no boundaries but it has characteristics. I believe we have the resources to identify many of the sources of these terrorist activities and to address them appropriately.

    I think all our prayers are that the leadership around the civilized world will act in the most responsible and appropriate fashion on behalf of all democratic societies.

  +-(2010)  

+-

    Ms. Judy Wasylycia-Leis (Winnipeg North Centre, NDP): Mr. Speaker, I would like to express appreciation to the member for Mississauga South for his speech and tell him and all members that the reaction of constituents and residents in my area of Winnipeg North Centre are very similar to his understanding and his interpretation.

    For people everywhere, the images of the atrocities that occurred on September 11 are sealed forever in our minds and will continue to haunt us. Through this horrible week people everywhere have come to a new understanding and appreciation for firefighters, police officers and first responders who help citizens everywhere in times of emergency.

    People everywhere have responded to this haunting image of horror, grief and pain with a real attempt to understand how this could happen and to seek solutions that are appropriate for the crimes committed.

    One of my constituents wrote to me and said that she had never before written to a politician, but that the words of war that had come through our leaders and through the media had driven her to act and to speak out.

    She said:

    --I want our actions, as individuals and a country, to help bring about lasting justice for all people, in every country and for all people of every race and religion. Justice is hard to achieve when acts of retaliation and revenge perpetuate the cycle by killing innocent people.

    Does member for Mississauga South share those sentiments? Has he heard them from his constituents and does he believe this is truly possible.

+-

    Mr. Paul Szabo: Mr. Speaker, I thank the hon. member for her kind comments. The communications I have received are quite reflective of what she has related to the House. People are concerned.

    It would be naive to think that a proportionate, indiscriminate response simply to take lives would be acceptable to anyone or would be a solution to anything. In fact it would be a step backwards.

    It is normal for people to have a rush of emotion and want to do something quickly. It is the anger, hurt and pain that makes thinking less clear than it should be. We communicate with our leadership. Americans communicate with their leadership. The congress and the senate have come together. They have provided the resources. However, there are people like Colin Powell who have put some insight into these activities and reminded us that terrorism did not start on September 11. Terrorism has been with us for many decades and we need to address it now, but we have to do it very carefully.

    As we talk about it more and more, I think the leadership understands that the people do not want to share the stage with terrorists on the same level and be judged in the same way. We obviously want to defend ourselves, our countries, our people and our values. At the same time, taking appropriate action can only help if we can deal with the root cause of that terrorism. It may not simply be people like Osama bin Laden.

    It is the cells and the thinking that they have created. It is possibly linked to things like the drug industry and the drug wars. Where is this money coming from? How do they finance these activities and why do people think they can get away with it?

    Democratic principles, democracies as a whole, speaking together as one, which I think we will as we move through this difficult time, will demonstrate more and more to those who harbour feelings of terrorism that it is not acceptable behaviour in our civilized society. I am hoping we will make positive steps in addressing the evils of terrorism. Maybe one day our children will benefit from our work today.

  +-(2015)  

+-

    Mr. James Moore (Port Moody—Coquitlam—Port Coquitlam, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, last Tuesday the world awoke to the sight of horror on television as we witnessed the mass murder of thousands of people in the terrorist attacks in New York, Washington, D.C. and in the air over Pennsylvania. These attacks were not targeted simply at the World Trade Center or Pentagon office buildings. They took aim at democracy itself through the murder of thousands, including many Canadians.

    Now is the time for all free nations to stand with the United States and to take resolute action against terrorism. Terrorists have declared war on the free world and the entire free world must in turn declare war on terrorism.

    The response from the coalition of free nations must be, out of self-defence, a systemic and comprehensive war against all forms of international terrorism. We must not treat this horrible act as a mere crime that must end up in front of some international court of justice. We should treat these attacks as acts of war that require strong and resolute measures of self-defence.

    Paul Wolfowitz, a U.S. deputy secretary of defence, has said that American plans are “not simply a matter of capturing people and holding them accountable, but removing the sanctuaries, removing the support systems, and ending states who sponsor terrorism.” He is right. Canada must be strong, resolute and wholly united behind our American and NATO allies in seeking to destroy those who seek to destroy our way of life.

    We must break the back of this international network of terror in all its guises and deprive its architects, executioners and sponsors of a safe harbour anywhere in this world. Canada should vow to commit all necessary resources to this accomplishment, whether diplomatic, economic or military.

    In his 1995 book Fighting Terrorism, former Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu forecast that radical fundamentalism would be the “delivery system” of increasingly lethal terrorism. Tuesday they delivered to Manhattan two 198 ton bombs; fully fuelled aircraft. When they get nuclear weapons, Netanyahu said they would use them. Western policy must respond to a closing window of opportunity for pre-emption.

    That, says Netanyahu, means not going after needles in haystacks, but against the haystacks themselves; the states that sustain terrorists. We should remember that the U.S. forces at Midway did not just destroy Japanese planes, they sank their aircraft carriers and won the war. Metaphorically speaking, certain supportive states are the terrorists' aircraft carriers.

    President Bush and Secretary of State Colin Powell have stressed three aspects of any retaliation. First, there is the need for a compelling dossier of evidence before it acts. Second, assemble as broad an international coalition of support as possible. Third, when the action comes it will be just the start of a “broad and sustained campaign”. I believe that Canada should commit its full support to all three of these goals and seek to play an active part in advancing and coalescing the free world's support for these three goals.

    The government's motion we are debating today states that Canada “reaffirm its commitment to the humane values of a free and democratic society and its determination to bring to justice the perpetrators of this attack and to defend civilization from any future terrorist attack”.

    While I certainly support this, I would like to offer six suggestions on how precisely we may proceed in this direction. In the days, weeks and years to come, Canada will need to take action to prevent and lessen the opportunities for such carnage to occur in the future.

    These measures should include: first, reassessing and improving intelligence operations and capabilities so they provide an early warning to deter terrorist attacks; second, identifying terrorist organizations both at home and abroad and actively subverting their activities and very existence; third, reassessing and improving airport security and the integrity of aircraft cockpits; fourth, increasing citizen awareness of suspicious activities; fifth, restricting assistance and imposing sanctions against those countries harbouring terrorists; and sixth, investing in the promotion of democracy and the rule of law abroad.

    As the transport critic for Canada's official opposition, I want to touch on four areas of transportation policy, specifically airline security, where Canada has work to be done in light of Tuesday's crime.

    The first area is cockpit access. The U.S. department of transportation has formed a task force to examine this issue, including whether steel doors should be installed on aircraft as is done in Israel. We should carefully consider their recommendations with a view to implementing them here in Canada. The transport minister indicated his willingness to move in this direction today in question period and Canadians should be encouraged by this development.

    The second policy area is the issue of air marshals. Both the United States and Israel have a program of air marshals who are armed and trained in the use of firearms on board aircraft and who travel randomly on selected flights. Air Canada has requested that a similar program be implemented here and we should encourage the government to carefully consider this request and whether or not it is feasible and in our best interest.

  +-(2020)  

    The third policy area is airport security itself. At Canadian airports only ticketed passengers may proceed beyond the security checkpoint. This system should be maintained for the future.

    As part of the heightened security measures currently in effect passengers are not allowed to bring knives or knife-like objects, including pocket knives, scissors, nail files or knitting needles in their carry-on luggage. Unfortunately Transport Canada's website only mentions that these heightened security measures currently in effect will remain in force until further notice. We would encourage the government to make this ban permanent.

    Airport security personnel are the linchpin of Canada's airport security system. This system needs examination particularly with respect to the salaries, qualifications and training of the personnel involved. In addition, all security personnel should be subject to criminal background checks.

    Also Transport Canada is developing the regulatory framework for a Canadian explosives detection system, or EDS, which involves the screening of passengers and their belongings for explosives on flights leaving Canada. It should also be encouraged to continue its efforts and to consider expanding its program to cover selected domestic flights as well if not all of them.

    Another area of security where the government's policy needs to be fleshed out is with regard to airline personnel and service contractors such as cleaners, caterers and baggage handlers who have access to airplanes. The system of granting security clearance to these people should be re-examined with a view to enhancing and tightening our standards.

    The fourth and final area of airline security policy to be addressed is with regard to baggage security. It has long been a policy that a passenger must travel on the same flight as his or her bags. We need to examine the type of situations in which this does not happen to reduce the chance that such events might be exploited by terrorists.

    In particular, the procedures involved in bumping airline passengers, the status of their baggage which might still be en route to the originally scheduled flight and the circumstances in which people fly standby require study to ensure policies lending to maximum security are in place.

    The official opposition will raise these transportation and airline security needs in the days, weeks and months ahead both in the House and at the transportation committee.

    The world changed on September 11 in another terrible act of infamy. Our response should be a sustained, aggressive response to international terrorism, its organizers, proponents, financiers and supporters. However let us not fool ourselves. The free world must act and rid the world of those who launched Tuesday's attack and act of war.

    Some argue that we must not act and that we should let those who perpetrated Tuesday's evils escape the wrath they have earned. Those advancing this view are simply wrong.

    In 1935 Mussolini invaded Abyssinia. The League of Nations said “You should not do it; it is wrong”, and then did nothing. In 1936 Hitler seized the Rhineland. The League of Nations said “You should not do it; it is wrong”, and then did nothing. If we tolerate terrorists such as those who organized, financed and supported Tuesday's attack remaining on this earth, we will continue to pay with blood.

    Any reasonable student of history or of freedom, and any reasonable analyst of how the world truly works would come to only one conclusion: that the free world has an obligation to our children and all the children of the world to insist on civilization, to purge the world of its murderers and to restore stability so that they may all in the end live in peace.

  +-(2025)  

+-

    Mr. Paul Harold Macklin (Northumberland, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, clearly all of us need a moment to cry, a catharsis, and a release. In my riding I have a mother who does not know the whereabouts of her son who happened to be at ground zero in Manhattan. These criminal acts have touched all of us, some more directly than others, but the direct perpetrators of this crime are dead. We cannot exact a greater penalty on them.

    I like the suggestions that the hon. member has brought forward about airport security but the greatest challenge for us as a free people is not with respect to more weapons or personnel, not with respect to revenge or retribution, not with respect to closing our borders to immigration and not to dwelling on the attributes of the U.S. anti-terrorism legislation which apparently did not work or help.

    How do we who foster freedom of speech, religion, and thought deal with those who under the guise of freedom of religion inspire, finance and foster others to destroy our free society? How do we stop those who generate these ideas?

+-

    Mr. James Moore: Mr. Speaker, I thank the member for Northumberland for the question. To borrow an often used phrase by the Minister of Citizenship and Immigration, I reject the premise of the member's question. However the question is independent of the premise so therefore I can deal with both of them.

    The premise of the question dealt with the fact that Canada should not necessarily rebuild its armed forces and not aggressively plan for peace through strength. If that is the approach of the hon. member then I suggest that he sit down with the Minister of National Defence, the Minister of Foreign Affairs and the Prime Minister who argued the exact opposite today in the House.

    The question asked by the member deals with pluralism. How does one advance pluralism? This is the difficulty when we are dealing with people who do not accept the concept of pluralism, the idea that people can live with one another and respect each other's differences in mutually beneficial and respectful ways. Ultimately the world would go nowhere and we would continue to see the constant spread of violence.

    How does one change that? That is a very difficult question with a lot of parts and I will not pretend to be an expert that can solve that problem. I do not know that anyone in this place can answer it, but we must continue to advance the argument in every arena that we find ourselves in such as the United Nations and NATO.

    Every time we go on CNN or Newsworld we have a global audience. We are clipped around the world and we have a responsibility to keep on advocating pluralism, democracy, respect and freedom.

    It is not because we advocate those things that people attack us. It is because people are just purely evil. As the last member for Calgary Southwest made mention, there are evil people in the world. We cannot change the value of life in their hearts and minds .

    There are some people on the planet who believe that the world ends when they crash a plane into a building. The only way we can prevent those people from crashing a plane into the building in the first place is with capital punishment.

+-

    Mrs. Bev Desjarlais (Churchill, NDP): Mr. Speaker, on behalf of the constituents of my riding of Churchill I also wish to take this opportunity to extend condolences to all those who have been affected by the September 11 incident.

    I cannot help but comment on the member's statements. He seems to be implying that some members in the House are suggesting that the terrorists should go unpunished. I have to say that at no point in any of the discussions or during question period today did I hear a single member of the House state that the terrorists should go unpunished. Actually what I heard, and I am very proud to say it, was a decent, considerate discussion and debate on a very serious issue. There were no quick and inaccurate reactions. Therefore I am disappointed to have the hon. member say at this point that anyone suggested that.

    If the hon. member feels that military strength is the answer, how does he explain the devastation that these terrorists were able to commit without that great military strength behind them when they hijacked and crashed the planes?

  +-(2030)  

+-

    Mr. James Moore: Mr. Speaker, on the first issue, I did not accuse any member of the House of not being in favour of justice. I have received dozens of e-mails from Canadians. On the weekend I read a letter in the Globe and Mail. I have seen comments from university professors who are so enlightened in their ivory towers as to be so devoid of any sense of justice that they are actually advocating that nothing should be done and that any more blood spilled is immoral and wrong.

    There are people advocating that view. I would encourage the hon. member to check with her staff on the spammed e-mail that is being received by every member of the House.

    On the second issue regarding the military might of the United States and how it did not defend itself against this attack, we do not know. The investigation has not been completed. We have not heard the recordings from the black box. We have not had a full report from the secretary of state or from the secretary of defence in the United States. These things are still ongoing and being investigated. We may not be aware of the extent to which the attack was planned but thwarted. In time we will see what the--

+-

    The Acting Speaker (Mr. Bélair): Order, please. The hon. member was not watching when I was signalling him.

+-

    Mr. Randy White (Langley—Abbotsford, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, I rise in the House to express on behalf of the people of Langley and Abbotsford, British Columbia, our deepest and most sincere regrets and sympathy to the families of those who were murdered and those who were injured in the meaningless attack in the United States on Tuesday, September 11, 2001.

    We in the Fraser Valley of British Columbia are stunned by the horrible crimes of murder and destruction perpetrated by those with a callous disregard for human life. It is certain that my vote will support the Liberal government in actions that support strong legislation against organized crime, hijacking and the elimination of the threat of terrorism.

    I want to direct the government's attention to an issue I have been speaking about in the House and acting on across the country for eight years now with little or no action from the House of Commons. The issue reflects upon Canada and I believe upon incidents such as this one. Although it may not be directly related to the September 11 issue, I know a lot of Canadians are thinking about it.

    The issue is not a popular one in Canada but is one that I have probably more experience with than anyone in the House. It deals with the deportation of criminals and organized crime and trying to remove the people from Canada who should not be here.

    I have been fighting to deport criminals from our country since 1993. The majority of the fight has been with the government's own administration. In some cases it has taken me as an intervener as much as two and a half years to be successful.

    In fact I have found the government paying for all the costs of these criminals, including interpretation, legal aid, hearing costs, security, et cetera. I have seen criminals fail to win deportation hearings, only to be told by government officials to claim refugee status. They then proceed to refugee hearings which last up to two years or more and then fail to be deported even when they lose those refugee hearings.

    All of this gives criminals around the world confidence that Canada is a haven for their activity. Those who target the United States know only too well that it is easy to get into Canada, then subsequently to the United States, and then to hide back in Canada again because our justice system becomes protection for them.

    I have seen and talked to American criminals who have escaped their laws by coming to Canada claiming refugee status and getting hearings. For example, I have participated in hearings where one individual left Cuba, went to the United States in excess of four years, had warrants outstanding for his arrest by the FBI, fled the U.S. to Canada, rightfully lost his refugee claim only because of my intervention and, as I found out last week, is still in Canada.

    Not only did the refugee board fail to retain this person after I informed them of the FBI warrants. It would not even retain him after he lost the refugee claim. Canada still harbours him and the refugee board to this day still refuses to give me information on the case even though I was the only intervener on behalf of victims.

    In each of the cases I will talk about tonight in which I had personally intervened with these criminals I had been asked to intervene by victims of crime.

    I have disclosed to the House ads that appeared in magazines from foreign countries which encourage persons to come to Canada under a sponsorship program even if they were criminals. I have one here which I will read. It is from a trade magazine from another country. It states:

    Guaranteed immigration to Canada with the purchase of a Fleet Rent-a-Car franchise. Total investment of $50,000 Canadian, approximately $30,000 U.S. You are guaranteed immigration to Canada even with a criminal record. For information write 5950 Bathurst Street, Suite 1009, Toronto, Ontario, or phone--

    It contains a certain number. Can anyone imagine the image? Individuals who want to get to the United States can ultimately do so because of the friendly border system between our two countries.

  +-(2035)  

    Can anyone imagine that if criminals can get to Canada and not be deported, they can stay, operate out of Canada, perpetrate a crime in the United States, come back to Canada and be relatively safe.

    Is it any wonder why criminals from around the world basically laugh at our legal industry, our failed immigration system and our propensity to put as much value on the criminal as the victim's circumstances?

    We in Langley and Abbotsford are participating in our country in productive ways. Our citizens have an excellent work ethic and we willingly contribute to healthy communities. We in my riding have three city councils headed by three able and capable mayors and councillors. We have four very respectable and determined members of our provincial government. The only flaw we seem to have in politics is when we get to the House of Commons and find that as much as we bring our issues from Langley--Abbotsford, they basically get ignored. This is the problem I hear from a lot of speakers in the House. It is not enough to say that we will side with the Americans on this issue. It is what will we do about it. Talk is cheap.

    I could give once again a litany of cases I have fought to remove non-citizen criminals from Canada, to profile the problems of terrorists and drug dealers from other countries in Canada, to get our justice and prison system to protect the Canadian citizen better and to put victims of crime on at least an equal footing as that of the criminal, all this with minimal reaction from the government.

    The results of government inaction can be seen in any community in Canada and perhaps around the world. I would like to take a few minutes, in the event that the Liberals are carefully listening to this, to give some examples of particular cases I have worked on. It applies both ways at our borders.

    Boujam Aai Inthavong, for instance, from Laos, helped murder a nice young 17 year old boy in my riding. He served three years for that crime. When he found out that I was looking for a deportation order and trying to make sure that the deportation order stuck to him, he was advised to apply for refugee status while in prison. He did that and he got refugee status to stay in Canada in a 15 minute hearing while he was in prison. Imagine the safety and security of our own nation, much less that of any other country where this fellow goes. That was the only situation I had been involved with where I finally ended up being successful in getting this fellow deported. However it took a lot of time, effort and heartache. The government should really listen to some of these stories and understand that the legislation needs to be changed.

    A dangerous offender in my riding received a passport while he was in prison. Anyone giving a dangerous offender a passport knows full well that he is headed in one direction from my area, which is on the border, he is headed across the border. That is unacceptable to the people of British Columbia and I suspect the people right across this country. These are the kinds of things I am sure that Americans would find unacceptable. In fact in this particular case I talked to Americans about this. They wondered what in the blue blazes we were doing over here in Canada. They wanted to know why would we be willing to give a dangerous offender a passport and send him over there? I do not have answers for that sort of thing.

    Another fellow I worked with came into Canada on a visitors visa. He became involved in an assault, a relatively minor crime, but to try to beat the deportation order he claimed refugee status. He failed on his refugee application but was not deported. He waited 90 days and filed again for refugee status. I fought that one all the time telling officials that they should incarcerate and deport. They never did and he is still in the country after two applications and now three.

    My whole thesis on this issue was limited to the need to look at the harbouring of criminals in our country. It is not good for our country and it is not good for any other country. I hope the government listens to that advice tonight.

  +-(2040)  

+-

    Mrs. Bev Desjarlais (Churchill, NDP): I am pleased to comment, Mr. Speaker, because what often happens is we overreact to particular events and we try to figure out what we could have done to avoid the event. We may have to accept to some degree that we cannot literally address every single terrorist act that happens.

    My colleague from Burnaby--Douglas and I were just talking about the different security measures they want to put in at airports and the confiscating of hairpins, paper clips and other such things right now. No one is objecting to those types of searches right now. For the most part everyone sees why it is being done. However in a week or two down the road we will have travellers asking why the heck we are taking so much time doing this. The rush will be on. Some business person will need to be somewhere or someone will not want to miss the plane and the panic will be on again.

    The member and I were just talking about the security at the airport, how we are checked and everything comes off. We can go into the lounge or the restaurant where there are numerous knives, spoons and forks or whatever might be there. We could also be on the plane with a cracked or broken glass and something could happen. We will never be able to address every single terrorist act but we need to have some practical security processes put in place to maintain some form of security. However we will never be able to address every single issue.

+-

    Mr. Randy White: Mr. Speaker, that was a great question. We cannot address every single issue, of course, but there are some very big, global issues that we have to look at in the country. My colleagues outlined foreign affairs issues, defence, transportation, CSIS and RCMP issues. We are now focused on issues of security whether they be internal or international.

    The particular issue I brought up in the House is of concern right across the country. Having been involved in so many issues personally I know the system rather well. People are concerned about Canada's image internationally. It is a good image but it is also an image that we harbour criminals and criminals know that and tell everyone that. They advertise from other countries saying “Come into Canada if you are a criminal”. It does not give confidence south of the border I am sure. We had a free and wonderful border system between our two countries but the Americans must be saying “You guys have to clean up your act a bit here”. Our propensity to accept and retain people who are criminals and the potential for them to go south and harm Americans must be a concern to the American system.

    In the case of the dangerous offender receiving a passport, that was a very big concern among the Americans I had talked to. It will not go away until the government stops saying that it is a racial issue or some other thing. It is not. It is a real issue in our country. The government has to clean up that part of the act and it would not take much.

  +-(2045)  

+-

    Mr. Steve Mahoney (Mississauga West, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, the member focused his presentation this evening on issues surrounding immigration. They all dealt pretty much with cases that he has worked on in his job as an MP at the constituency level and he detailed some of the information. Does he have any information that any one of those cases or any other case is directly related to the issue we are debating tonight which is the tragedy of the terrorist attack in New York?

+-

    Mr. Randy White: Mr. Speaker, that question was asked of several people here. What we are trying to tell the government is that all these issues represent Canada. They in fact give an image of Canada. They open doors to Canada. Because it may not have happened in New York City as a direct result of that does not mean it cannot happen. We are trying to get the government to understand. I can tell by the question that the government does not have an understanding of what I am talking about. That is too bad and unfortunate for Canada.

+-

    Hon. Charles Caccia (Davenport, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I will be splitting my time with the member for Mississauga West.

    The fact that the motion has the unanimous support of the House shows how deeply Canadians were moved by the tragedy that hit the United States of America and the strength of ties binding Canadians to Americans. The same can be said about the people in my riding.

    What we saw and read in the media has shaken us all. In addition, as we learn daily from the list of the missing ones, we also learn that virtually no nation was spared with the collapse of the towers. The names of the victims range from the United States of America of course to places as far as Guyana, and the United Kingdom to Canada. People from all continents are missing. It can therefore be said that virtually no nationality in the world was spared the horrendous and devastating impact of the four hijacked planes.

    At the same time, as a result of this apocalyptic event we have learned one very important lesson so aptly outlined last week in the Globe and Mail by Amos Oz, a poet of Jewish faith: namely the importance of distinguishing firmly and clearly, and keeping apart the Islamic world and culture from the terrorist phenomenon.

    In his speech today the Prime Minister made the point very well when he said that we will not undermine the values we cherish, that we will continue to offer refuge to the persecuted and that we will support and respect Muslim Canadians as an integral part of our multicultural society.

    The consequences of last week's tragedy points also to the possibility of different scenarios which could emerge in the months and years ahead. One would be the United States of America, alone or with NATO, developing the most sophisticated intelligence system in the world, acquiring the most lethal weapons, pursuing terrorism and terrorists wherever they may be and, in doing so, fighting terrorism as a western crusade.

    The other scenario could be one that requires more time but would give better results in the long term: a global initiative that would include Russia and China, nations which have everything to gain from eradicating terrorism as well. The United Nations would seem to be the ideal institution to launch a concerted action so as to ensure the anti-terrorism is conducted globally or multilaterally to use another term.

    The global action would require, among others, the deployment of diplomatic skills rather than a war. It would be an action aimed at removing the reasons for terrorism to exist. Peace, justice and equity would be the goals, beginning with the Middle East of course, conscious and motivated by the fact that violence only breeds violence, violence generates hatred and violence leads to vendettas and revenge. This vicious circle we all agree must be broken.

  +-(2050)  

    The leadership for the second scenario, more preferable to the first, one must admit, would have to come from prime ministers and presidents and from people like Kofi Annan. Such a scenario would require many nations, including the United States of America in particular, to regain confidence in the unique role of the United Nations.

    The main objective is to find the root cause of hatred and racism and prejudice which at present are the main motivations which feed and give power to the terrorist movement.

    War in the form commonly understood is not the right option. On the contrary, war when declared would give legitimacy to the opponent. War would give the opponent a legitimate status and the right to strike back. Declaring war is not the solution to the terrorism problem. It may provide short term emotional satisfaction to some, but it will not provide the solutions for the long term as advocated today in this Chamber by the Prime Minister. We must keep in mind that for every terrorist eliminated, such as Osama bin Laden, five more will readily emerge.

    The media reported the fact that terrorism can count on substantive financial resources. If that is accurate, then surely there is a role to be played by the international banking community. The banking community could and should be called upon by governments to identify and freeze the bank accounts held by suspected terrorists. In this way the banking community would play a very useful role.

    In summary, what lies ahead for the global community is the opportunity for creative diplomatic initiatives, for intensive police action, for the bringing to justice of the terrorists, for a creative role by the United Nations and, as was mentioned a moment ago, for a role by the banking community.

    September 11, in generating the emotions it has, could generate in the future a number of creative measures and initiatives in restoring confidence and in strengthening the fabric of society and the relations of the global community. The emotions could lead to increased international co-operation and to the pursuit of justice. It could lead to the building of a better world on the ruins of September 11, a day we will never forget.

  +-(2055)  

+-

    Mr. James Lunney (Nanaimo—Alberni, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, I thank the hon. member for his comments tonight. I have been following the debate with some interest. I am sure every member who spoke in the House today and all who have remained late into the evening wish there were some other reason we were here tonight.

    I join with my colleagues and all Canadians of good will in expressing my outrage at the horrific destruction that took place in New York and at the Pentagon this past week. It is something none of us will ever forget. As others have already said, Tuesday, September 11, 2001 is a day that many of us who are old enough to understand consequences will always remember. I would liken it to another date, as perhaps others have as well. On November 22, 1963 another event shook the world. Many of us remember where we were and what transpired at that time in our lives. It was a day when the values of the world changed.

    Last week the atrocities that we saw, the death of people in New York, and the heroic intervention of the firefighters and policemen who tragically died were all things we were struck and impressed by.

    The member painted two scenarios for us. He suggested that one scenario is the U.S. destroying terrorist cells through high tech means. The second is that somehow we would find the answers to all of our global problems and address the root causes of global hatred and racial tensions. Does the member really believe that solving the world's problems this way is an achievable goal in such a short time?

+-

    Hon. Charles Caccia: Mr. Speaker, no, definitely not. That is why I emphasized the fact that this will be a slow and long term process of the kind that was advocated by the Prime Minister in the debate today.

    Obviously there is no panacea but we must remember, and it seems quite clear to me, that in the pursuit of terrorism we have to deal with the root causes that feed terrorism and make it so devastating and active on the world scene. In order to do that we have to deal with the hatred on which they base their support. We have to find ways of reducing the tensions in all those countries in those parts of the world, beginning with the Middle East where violence and hatred have been so dominant and which probably do give the terrorist movement additional strength and additional raison d'être.

    I have no illusions. It is not a solution that is a quick one. It will not be a pursuit that will happen overnight. We have to ask ourselves how we are going to uproot and remove the sources that lead to violence and hatred, vendetta and revenge rather than just believing that by killing the terrorists involved that we have resolved the problem. We have to bring them to justice. We have to strengthen our security system. We have to engage in very sophisticated diplomatic activities. We have to attempt to do our best in building a better world on what is emerging from the ruins in downtown New York.

    The way of doing that is to empower the United Nations with a task that has the purpose of resolving the tensions that have led to the spread and the intensity of these horrific activities on the part of the terrorist movement.

  +-(2100)  

+-

    Mr. Steve Mahoney (Mississauga West, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, let me begin my remarks, on behalf of my family and all the people I represent in Mississauga, to say how sad we all are and how we share the feelings that have been expressed in this place, throughout this great land and all around the world about the tragedy we witnessed. One of the most incredible aspects, aside from the magnitude of what happened, was the fact that most of us actually witnessed it, if not instantly while it was happening, certainly shortly thereafter. We have seen it replayed numerous times over the past six days.

    I was in my office waiting to go into a meeting. CNN was on the television. One building was burning and we were all listening to reports that a plane crash had occurred. Then literally out of the blue another one came along and slammed into the south tower. It did not seem real. It had to be a stunt. It had to be a movie or some kind of a trick. It just did not seem possible that an attack of that magnitude could take place.

    I agree with many who have spoken about the significance and infamy of it. As my wife said when she called me, it is another one of those incidents that everyone will know exactly where they were and what they were doing when someone asks them 10, 15 and 20 years from now. It is like the assassination of President Kennedy and many other instances. It is an astounding human tragedy beyond description, beyond comprehension, beyond belief, but it is also reality.

    I wish I could embrace some of the members' ideas because we do need to look at change and we do need to learn from the incident in every aspect of our lives. However we must also recognize, as our Prime Minister has said, that we will not live in fear. The president of the United States has said it as well. For us to live in fear, for us to cloak ourselves in security that is beyond the imagination of Canadians is to say to the terrorists “Okay, you win”. We cannot let them win. We must find solutions.

    I have heard members today describe the War Measures Act as a solution that should somehow be reactivated, not necessarily in the same way that it was. However while they were talking about the experience under then Prime Minister Trudeau, and some members I realize did not and would not agree with what happened then while others would, they seemed to imply that that should be a template with which we fix this. I am sorry to disagree because I want to find a solution as much as anyone. I want to stand shoulder to shoulder with our American cousins and friends. I want to bring an end, just like everyone in this place, to terrorism in the world. But the FLQ crisis, as tragic as it was, was isolated. Certainly they had difficulty finding the cells; they had difficulty finding the place where Mr. Cross was being held, but it was achievable.

    What bothers me about this situation is we are dealing with a monster with tentacles that reach into dozens of countries. It has money that is beyond the financial capability of most countries in the world. It has the ability to inflict terror and damage around the world.

    On a local level in Mississauga, I would like to tell the House what I did on Thursday. I was awake most of the night thinking about and replaying what I had seen. I was trying to think what I could do as an individual, as an MP, as a citizen of Mississauga and Canada. There is a place in our community just outside of my riding in the city of Mississauga called Palestine House. Some months ago there was an act of vandalism against the building and the people in it. Some people spray painted swastikas and hate slogans on the building.

  +-(2105)  

    At that time there was press coverage about it. There was a lot of discussion. Politicians and I, the mayor and others, were coming around trying to console and trying to understand. Something incredible happened that I will never forget. Rabbi Larry Englander, the rabbi from the Solel Synagogue in my riding, showed up with a cheque from the synagogue to present to the leaders of Palestine House to help them clean up the graffiti on their building. The message from that was that we would not allow that kind of terrorism and that kind of fanaticism to infiltrate the quality of our life here in Canada.

    When I arrived at Palestine House on Thursday there was a lot of excitement that an MP was coming to see them. They were pretty upset. There is a school there and people work there. Those people were pretty upset and pretty tense. They escorted me into the back room and I was quite surprised to walk into the middle of a meeting between the leaders of that community and two members of Peel regional police. I asked why the police were there and was told they had had complaints from their children at the school that they were being intimidated and they refused to go school. There apparently had been an incident of some form of violence, of shoving, all related to the tragedy that we all watched on CNN.

    That is not Canadian. That is not my Canada. I do not think it is the Canada of any person in this place. That is exactly the kind of incident that we have to strive to stop from taking over the debate in this particular issue.

    My good friend, the member for Davenport, made a suggestion that I indeed intended to make and I will repeat it in the hope that this will perhaps add some weight to it, that is, we should be fighting fire with fire and attacking their financial capability. They must have money in bank accounts throughout the world, money that gets funnelled into weapons. Who paid for the $30,000 in flight instruction, in cash? Who paid for the one way airline tickets? Somebody is transferring money around.

    We heard questioners in the House today asking if we were prepared to commit military action. What we are talking about there is soldiers on the ground. We were being questioned as to whether we are prepared to send our men and women into harm's way to fight an enemy that is so different from anything any of us have ever experienced before.

    I have heard members talk about watching Pearl Harbor and about the trauma of living through World War II. I was born in 1947 so I can only go by what I learned in history, but this is nothing like the experience of World War II, where we could identify an enemy. We knew where they were coming from. It was a terrible, cataclysmic period in our world history but at least we could get a handle on who we were fighting.

    I fear that if we stand up in this place and talk the talk we had better be prepared to walk the walk, and walking the walk means sending people walking right into the heart of Taliban country, right into Afghanistan, and two nations, Great Britain and Russia, will testify about what a mistake they made by going into what turned out to be their very own Vietnam.

    In my view what we need to do is somehow answer the questions of who we are we fighting and how we can fight them. What are the techniques that we can use? We need to do it united. It does not mean that we are any less committed to fighting and ending terrorism. It just means that we have to recognize that the capabilities these people have are so incredible that they go beyond sending a platoon of soldiers to certain death in a faraway land.

  +-(2110)  

    I believe that the leaders in the United States understand that. They have been through it. I believe that our government understands it. It is my sincere hope that we will continue to join with the United States to put an end to terrorism throughout the world, but to do it in a way that will be effective and make sense.

+-

    Mr. Rick Casson (Lethbridge, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, I was going to say it is a pleasure, but it is not a pleasure to rise in the House tonight to be involved in the debate and to pose a question to the member for Mississauga West.

    Before I do that, I would like to add to others the condolences and prayers of the citizens of Lethbridge in southern Alberta for the victims of this horrific crime, for their families and friends around the world as well as here in Canada, and to offer their support to the rescue workers who are working so hard to find survivors in that awful mess that once was New York. I was a volunteer firefighter for many years. I have seen some horrific things but I cannot imagine what these people are facing as they go through this disaster.

    At the memorial service in Lethbridge on Friday, held in conjunction with the one in Ottawa, during the ceremony the firefighters present were called away to answer a call. I know from experience that when that call comes how focused firefighters become on the task at hand when the call comes in and how they will not stray from getting to where they are needed.

    The member gave us a lot of scenarios about the world and how we need to get to the root cause of terrorism. My question for the member is about what he is telling his constituents that he and his government will do to put at ease the minds of children and families in this country. That threat exists. We can go after the root cause and we can try to change culture and society, but in the interim what is he prepared to ask his government to do to make everyone in the country feel safer?

+-

    Mr. Steve Mahoney: Mr. Speaker, that is a really important question. I think every one of us in this place needs to address what we can do individually in our own community, such as talking to the young people in our schools and to community groups.

    However, what we need to do is not make knee-jerk decisions. We need to know if we will make commitments and we have said that we will commit. In fact I wonder at times what people do not understand about the word yes. We have said we will support the Americans and that we will be shoulder to shoulder with them. Our Prime Minister made an extremely eloquent speech on Friday in this place to 100,000 Canadians. The message is clear: Canada will be there.

    What we do not know as parliamentarians in this place is where there is. We do not yet know how we are to attack it because the investigations are not complete. All I am saying, which needs to be said to Canadians, is that we need to find ways where we do not have to put your sons and daughters in harm's way, because I do not believe that this is a traditional war like the wars in which we have had to take part in the past.

    This is a very complex situation that requires some very strategic planning on how we can attack the root causes and get rid of terrorism throughout the entire world. Canadians will understand that.

+-

    Mr. Grant McNally (Dewdney—Alouette, PC/DR): Mr. Speaker, I want to congratulate my colleague from Mississauga West for his speech. He has touched on a number of important points.

    I too want to extend condolences and prayers on behalf of the people of Dewdney--Alouette in British Columbia. I had the opportunity to live and work in the United States for a year. My father was born in the state of New York. It is with a heavy heart that I join in to offer my condolences as well.

    I want to quickly touch on one point that my colleague mentioned, which is that we need to walk the walk and not just talk here tonight. It is my sincere hope and wish that we can move together in a non-partisan way in the House, with the resolve that will be necessary not just for this day but for the many months ahead, to come together with co-ordinated action to pay the price for our freedoms.

    A past generation did that and there are leaders here in this place today who must be solid in their resolve to act on behalf of the people of our nation and our world to work to solve this issue. It is my hope that we will be able to do that. I commend my colleague for his wise comments tonight.

  +-(2115)  

+-

    Mr. Steve Mahoney: Mr. Speaker, let me thank the hon. member and just leave members with one brief thought if I may. The organization that we are dealing with has bases throughout the world. Just to give an example of how complex it is, it is a conglomerate of groups spread throughout the world, operating as a network with global reach, with a presence in Algeria, Egypt, Morocco, Turkey, Jordan, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan, Syria, Tianjin in China, Pakistan and Bangladesh. The list goes on and on. There are 30 or 40 countries involved. It is a very complex issue. I know that my government will attack it, along with the American government, as best as possible.

[Translation]

+-

    Mr. Claude Bachand (Saint-Jean, BQ): Mr. Speaker, I wish to inform you that I will be sharing my time with the member for Laval Centre. I therefore plan to speak for about ten minutes, after which I will be ready to answer questions for about five minutes.

    It is customary for parliamentarians to begin a speech by saying that they are very pleased to be taking part in the debate. Unfortunately, this evening, at the stage we are at, and I am not referring to time but to feelings, I am not prepared to say that I am very happy to be taking part in this debate. It is an unprecedented tragedy.

    I will explain what I mean. My riding borders on the states of New York and Vermont. I have many friends who are politicians in the state of New York. I have met on several occasions with Senator Hillary Clinton. I have also met with the other senator, Mr. Schumer, as well as with members of Congress, including Mr. McHugh. I am also very friendly with the mayor of Plattsburgh, Dan Stewart. I think that he is a good friend of the member for Hochelaga--Maisonneuve.

    I think that during the last Gay Pride parade, Mr. Stewart rode in the car of the mayor of Montreal, Pierre Bourque. There are therefore many close connections and friendships between my riding and the State of New York.

    I would like to tell those listening how I heard about the event. I arrived at my office around 8.30 or 8.45 on this particular Tuesday morning. I had a call from someone telling me that an airplane had crashed into one of the towers of the World Trade Center.

    My first reaction was to ask whether it was an attack or an accident. I thought it was an attack. I turned on the television to watch CNN and the various news networks: everything was live. At that point, we saw the second plane hit the second tower. There was no longer any doubt; this was really an attack.

    I immediately tried to reach my friends by telephone. People will understand that it is not easy to reach a senator. However, I was able to reach my friend in Plattsburgh and immediately offered him my condolences. I also offered the assistance of the riding of Saint-Jean. I told him to ask for whatever he needed and we would do everything we could to help.

    The first paragraph of the motion before us reads as follows:

    That this House express its sorrow and horror at the senseless and vicious attack--

    We cannot oppose that. We will act collectively, together with the 301 members. I think a lot of members have offered the American government their deepest sympathies during the course of the day.

    Not just the American government is involved. We offer our condolences to the President, but for those who have friends in New York City and the state of New York, Governor Pataki comes to mind. I think it is important to say individually “We are so sorry about what has happened. We want to help you”. It is important to say it too, altogether, here, this evening.

    I think that everyone in the House and my colleagues in the Bloc Quebecois offer our condolences not only to the American people but to the inhabitants of New York City and the state of New York. It is an unprecedented drama.

    This week my daughter attended one of my Bloc Quebecois cocktail parties, and I mentioned her. These people who hung on to the last thread of their life at the top of the World Trade Center were thinking of their family. It is important that the planet, that Canada, that Quebec, that the municipalities and that each riding send support to the Americans.

  +-(2120)  

    Sometimes they say it does not take the form of millions of dollars. Regardless, they did not need basic foodstuffs, because everyone was rushing in to offer what they could. Our gifts of blood they did not need. There were lineups at New York hospitals to contribute, to save the life of the people who were victims of these acts.

    At such times, what people need, and it is a bit like in a family, if we say we are in the same family as the United States in North America, are comfort and support. I think that was there, and the second paragraph of the motion says it very well:

    That it express its heartfelt condolences to the families of the victims and to the American people;

    I have just said that we have done so, that everyone is doing so. I also have special thoughts for the rescue teams that tried to help the victims.

    There were likely firefighters or police officers who entered the building and went up as many floors as they could to rescue people. Some cannot understand that. They have asked me "How could they, when they knew they were going to their death?" I am familiar with the various fire departments and police forces in my riding and I believe that these people will always put their lives at risk to save someone else. It is touching to realize that some people went up the stairs, since nothing else was operating, in order to try to help others, knowing that their lives were at risk, but that is what they did.

    We must extend our condolences to the victims and their families, but I believe we must also pay tribute to the rescuers who made every effort to save people and lost their lives in the attempt. I believe that this needs to be brought to people's attention.

    People died because they went up into the towers in attempt to help people out, even though they knew they were probably not going to live through it. As far as the first two paragraphs of the motion go, I am fine with them.

    The last paragraph reads as follows:

    That it reaffirm its commitment to the humane values of a free and democratic society and its determination to bring to justice the perpetrators of this attack on these values and to defend civilization from any future terrorist attacks.

    This is, in my opinion, where a slight problem comes in. Today during oral question period reference was made to this. I understand that the Prime Minister can respond very adequately on NATO article 5, which deals with great solidarity and which says that an attack against one of the members is an attack against all. NATO reacted very promptly. I think the very next day NATO secretary general Lord Robertson said: “Yes, it is an act of war; yes, the United States have been attacked; yes, we are all going to come to their defence”.

    This is where things start to become a bit more complicated in this debate. If we look at the main wars which have taken place in the past 50 or perhaps 100 years, the aggressor was very clearly identified. During World War I, we saw very clearly the rise of the aggressor and his hegemonic desire for total military control.

    There was also the attack on Pearl Harbor at the end of World War II, which I think was unprecedented. The nation responsible for this attack was easily identifiable. The same was true during the Korean War, when North Korea wanted to take over South Korean territory. The international community was forced to respond. The same thing happened during the gulf war. Saddam Hussein was very clearly identified. In the Balkans, it was the same: Milosevic was very clearly identified.

    Now, we are facing an insidious aggressor. Much diplomacy will be required. The president of the United States quite correctly said that it would be a long war because we are not in a position to say that we are going to attack this individual or that nation directly.

    This is the most difficult part of the resolution. As far as condolences, military intervention and the need to eradicate terrorism, the Bloc Quebecois is in complete agreement. We are going to support this resolution and, in the days and weeks to come, try to ensure that the debate is properly focused. Attacks on civilian populations must be avoided. Everyone has said so.

  +-(2125)  

[English]

+-

    Mr. Jason Kenney (Calgary Southeast, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, if I understand the member correctly, he is suggesting that the potential military action contemplated in part by the invocation of article 5 of NATO would be inapplicable in this case in so far as no clear states are belligerents in this potential war.

    I gather that is he is saying an armed struggle would not apply here in so far as there is no state against which to launch the struggle. However does the member not appreciate the principle for all U.S. policy, and I suspect NATO policy in this regard, which was articulated by President Bush last week? The president said he would make no distinction between states which sponsor terrorism or harbour terrorists and the terrorists themselves.

    Does the member agree with the principle that states which sponsor, promote or harbour terrorism or terrorists are equally as culpable as the terrorists who live and operate within them? Should those states not themselves be held accountable by civilized and free nations of the world?

[Translation]

+-

    Mr. Claude Bachand: Mr. Speaker, I thank my colleague for his excellent question. Indeed, a little more clarification is required.

    Yes, I think he is right. We must also take action against nations that protect, finance and encourage terrorist acts. Now, as everyone knows, and I am taking Afghanistan as an example, the Afghani regime, the Taliban, strongly encourages the numerous terrorist camps within Afghanistan.

    Does this justify an unprecedented bombing, of Kabul for instance? This is where we make certain distinctions. I am not saying that article 5 of NATO or of the North Atlantic Treaty ought not to be applied. It must, but with distinctions, because as I have said already, in various wars the aggressors have been clearly identified.

    Here, they have not. It is certain that we are beginning to find leads to Osama bin Laden and so on. But would that justify, for example, the bombing of Kabul, because it houses a regime sympathetic to this terrorist leader?

    This is where Canada, the Bloc Quebecois and all parties in this House have a role to play. The House of Commons must weigh the action of the government carefully. I would, moreover, point out that this was the object of my question this afternoon.

    What are the government's intentions? According to the government, “We have U.S. assurances that they will need to go back to NATO and tell them "Here is the proof and here is what we suggest"”. Each of the member nations will then be free to act as it sees fit. Certainly, we are linked by the treaty, but it is equally certain that we will not be bombing civilian populations. The law of retaliation does not apply here.

    Just because 5,000 civilians were killed in the United States, we are not going to kill 5,000 more in Afghanistan. That is not the purpose. This is, moreover, the reason President Bush has said the war will be a long one, because I believe he wants to go after the terrorists and not the totally innocent civilian population.

    The terrorists did not make that distinction. I believe that we, as responsible members of this House, as parliamentarians, must make that distinction. We must not attack civilians. We must strike directly at the terrorists.

  +-(2130)  

[English]

+-

    Mr. Grant McNally (Dewdney--Alouette, PC/DR): Mr. Speaker, these are tough questions we must ask. The very nature of the acts of the evil men who perpetrated them on America has forced all of us on to the horns of a moral dilemma. We must ask these tough questions and resolve in this place to come up with the answers. We must understand that when dealing with individuals who are willing to die for their cause we must consider doing the same.

[Translation]

+-

    Mr. Claude Bachand: Mr. Speaker, I think that there is a shift in public opinion.

    Take the example of the war in the Balkans: many countries took part under the premise that there would be no loss of life for the forces fighting against evil.

    I believe that this is changing today. Public opinion in Canada, the U.S. and around the world changed when people saw the images of those airplanes colliding into the towers causing so many civilian casualties. Today people are prepared to eradicate terrorism, to make them pay the price for the lives lost and I think that public opinion is justified on this point.

+-

    Ms. Madeleine Dalphond-Guiral (Laval Centre, BQ): Mr. Speaker, on September 11, a clap of thunder on a bright sunny day rocked our world into fear, anger, panic and pain. In an unimaginable act, terrorists struck with pin-point accuracy at the very symbols that provided us with the illusion of tranquility and security.

    Can these horrible crimes, perpetrated by men against the emblems of our privileged society have any meaning? The answer to this question is not simple, because if we forget for a moment about the horror, and the fanaticism, and the madness of murder and hate, do we have the right to close our eyes on the misery of starving children, on the violence committed with no discrimination against vulnerable peoples, on the growing gap between the rich and poor?

    Do we, as citizens, have some responsibility to bear in the succession of events? Are the “good” people really all on one side? Is the law of retaliation a fair and just response?

    It was not by chance that the attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon took place on September 11, International Day of Peace. The terrorists' message is clear: peace is an illusion. We do not agree with this message, but it is important to analyse the meaning of what they did. The fact that this tragedy was the result of the brilliantly orchestrated action of fanatical commandos does not free us from the obligation to understand and take action to safeguard the values of freedom, justice and democracy, which are the hope of all peoples.

    World opinion was unanimous in denouncing the perpetrators of these unprecedented tragedies: they must be held accountable and face the consequences of their actions.

    Because terrorism is the negation of democracy, each of us seeks the introduction of appropriate measures to eradicate it, and return to the feeling of security we had before September 11. Is this realistic? No, it is not, any more than it is realistic to think that it is possible to eliminate the violence and madness in the heart of men. Although Canada can undoubtedly improve identity checks at its borders and facilitate the transmission of information necessary for the security of its citizens, it is important to always bear in mind the danger of a collective paranoia which would suspend our freedom.

    Transforming a state into a bunker is to decide to turn in on oneself, to suffocate. Canada's reputation when it comes to respect for human rights and acceptance of others is exemplary on more than one count. In this difficult balance required between stepped-up border security and respect for freedom, human rights, refugee and humanitarian rights, we must listen to the voices of our fellow citizens, who believe in enriching our society through the contribution of new traditions, new ways of doing things and seeing the world.

    One of the most notable things about Canada and Quebec is the warm welcome we give those looking for a safer and more peaceful place in which to live. Our duty as modern and open democratic societies is to continue to help those fleeing dictatorial regimes and life-threatening situations. The manner in which we treat those who come to live with us will reflect our openness and generosity as a society.

    I am confident, and I strongly hope, that despite the extremely difficult period that humankind is going through, Canada will still be able to set an example when it comes to respect for international conventions, particularly the Convention relating to the Status of Refugees and the international convention against torture.

  +-(2135)  

    The current situation must be of concern to future asylum seekers, who arrive in Canada in these troubled times in which international peace is being sorely tested.

    We hope that these men and women wishing to live here will always be treated fairly, justly, generously and with the openness we are so proud of.

    Khalil Gibran, the author of The Prophet, Lebanese by birth, wrote in a short volume published in French by Albin Michel in 1990 that crime is another word for need or symptom of disease.

    In the aftermath of these attacks, one question remains unanswered: why? Why so much hate, why so much violence? At the heart of New York and Washington, the entire western world was hit. Could the misery and injustice to which millions are driven without hope be part of the answer? When life is little more than hunger, thirst, and watching one's loved ones become sick and die without any hope of light at the end of the tunnel, when life has been lived in a situation of war and oppression for so long, when a culprit appears to have been found, could anger, rage and revolt eventually take root in such circumstances and transform into deliberate acts mindless rage, where reality is wilder than fiction?

    While globalization has made us believe in a thriving economy, it may be that the answers buried in the rubble of the twin towers talk about sharing, justice and generosity. Is it quixotic to believe that globalization, which is of an economic nature, could have a social dimension and that the right to feed oneself, to have a shelter, to learn and to grow become a concrete reality for all?

    Will we collectively be able to make this societal choice?

    No one knows what the days, the weeks and the months ahead will deliver. Let us hope that the anger will soon give way to wisdom.

    The author of the Prophet also wrote “Hatred is a walking corpse. Who among us wishes to be a tomb?”

    The September 11 incidents were a big bang that resonated across the whole world. Let us admit it. Democracy is fragile and today, more than ever before, this democracy will have the strength of our commitment to promote social equity, which reflects our responsibility toward the peoples of the world.

  +-(2140)  

[English]

+-

    Mr. Jason Kenney (Calgary Southeast, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, I continue to be perplexed by the kind of comments such as the one I have just heard from the member. For instance, she asked at the outset of her speech in this context: is good only on one side? This implies a question that is filled with moral ambiguity and moral relativism.

    In response to her rhetorical question, I propose that good is on the side of those who oppose the evil represented by these acts of terror and those who perpetrated them. It is that simple. There is good and evil at play in this combat. It is not jingoistic to suggest it. It is simply a question of absolute moral clarity. I am shocked that not every member can see this.

    The member talked about root causes. We keep hearing this over and over again. Here we are facing the single greatest strategic security threat to the health and well-being of the people of the free world since the cold war and instead of a serious analysis of what drives it and how to prevent it and fight it, we hear about anger, rage, revolt, economic inequity. Many of the terrorists who perpetrated this were very wealthy people financed by at least one billionaire and probably by other very wealthy people involved in the Islamic movement. Some of the actual hijackers had graduate degrees from western universities. They were not struggling voices of economic depravity from the third world. They were people who represent a very insidious movement of radical Islamism, not all Muslims, but a radical Islamism which is predicated on anti-Semitism and a hatred for Liberal democracy.

    Does the member not appreciate the real motives here and the moral clarity that stands in this conflict?

[Translation]

+-

    Ms. Madeleine Dalphond-Guiral: