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Canadian Security Intelligence Service (CSIS) Information Series - Part 3

Written by: "Anti-Racist" Agitator, Spy and  Informant Matt Lauder

For the past couple of days, I’ve been offering little bits and insights into the operation of the intelligence community in Canada, most notably the CSIS. Today, my aim is to put that information in perspective by outlining various CSIS operations as well as gaffs by the Service. This, I hope, will allow readers to have a greater understanding on how the CSIS operates, and how one can protect his or her privacy, rights, and freedoms as protected by the Charter. I will likely continue with my expose on the Service for another day or two, and then will return to the more mundane issues of everyday politics, etc.

Seien Sie aufmerksam. Schützen Sie Freiheit durch Wissen.

[*#] indicates endnote.

Because the CSIS is a civilian organization operating on the federal level (i.e. it is a bureaucracy), it is therefore dependent upon policy (ministerial direction) and funding to achieve its goals and objectives. Like many other government departments, such as DND, the CSIS was hit hard by budget constraints during the mid-1990s, and is just now beginning to see funding increases. Even SIRC, the Security Intelligence Review Committee (an appointed watch-dog committee that investigates complaints against CSIS), complained bitterly about government funding reductions in their 1997-1998 Annual Report (Section 3 B p. 71)[*1]. The result of funding decreases in the intelligence sector, one may assume, would likely be an increase in operational oversights, operational short-cuts, and human error due to lack of training or a purely human factor such as low morale [*2]. We will examine some of these gaffs later in this article.

Just a few weeks ago, the security and police establishments in Canada received notice from the finance minister announcing nearly $900 million more over the next three years for the CSIS, the RCMP, and Canada Customs to fight terrorist groups and subversion. Ward Elcock, the director of the CSIS, declared that the Service is currently tracking 50 terrorist groups and approximately 350 individual targets. Elcock concedes that, contrary to previous statements made by his department, that Canada “faces no greater terrorist threat than any other Western nation, bar the United States (The Toronto Star, March 5, 2000).“

Critics have charged that the CSIS has used the hysteria created by the rash of suspected terrorists attempting to enter the US from Canada as a ploy to secure an infusion of much needed cash. Haroon Siddigui (The Toronto Star, March 9, 2000), states:

“It is not in our national interest to have CSIS appear in the same bush league as local police forces that routinely up crime at annual budget time. Such alarmism can only sap the credibility of an agency that doesn’t have much to start with. It also erodes the ability of Canadians to determine how much of the terrorist threat is real and how much is hype, and how much of organized crime activity poses a threat to national security as opposed to just being a big nuisance to our civic society.”

Now that the CSIS has appealed to Ottawa’s sense of self-pride as a competitor regarding national security in the Western world, receiving a large budget increase as a result of those pleas, it will obviously come under greater scrutiny by the media and political critics to ensure effectiveness. While getting the Service to admit responsibility of previous oversights is difficult, many of which have cast doubt on the abilities of the Service, there are assurances that the CSIS will be more vigilant in protecting the security of Canadians in the future (1998 CSIS Report, P 2).

As stated in a previous article, the CSIS has had many complaints of inappropriate behaviour, both from external sources and the SIRC. Jeffrey T. Richardson and Desmond Ball (1990:324) [*3] states:

“[T]he Canadian Security and Intelligence Review Committee (SIRC) has expressed misgivings about CSIS attempts to penetrate and curtail the activities of student groups, political fringe groups, environmental coalitions and peace movements that CSIS believed represent a threat to Canadian national security. The SIRC has identified what it calls as ‘virtually ludicrous’ cases of CSIS investigations and plotting disruption of alleged subversive groups and ‘intimidation’ by CSIS agents of individuals associated with some of the groups under investigation.”

One example of this interference involved CSIS agents not permitting a university researcher security clearance for employment. In 1989, Jong-Hun Lee charged that the CSIS had ‘blacklisted’ him, suggesting that the Service had informed Citizenship and Immigration that he was a “spy” and a security threat (1990:325). After a formal investigation by SIRC, which included interviews with staff from the University of Toronto detailing the activities of CSIS agents, it was found that the CSIS had acted inappropriately and that Mr. Lee was to receive his security clearance.

In another report, SIRC had reprimanded the CSIS for “wrongly implicating an anti-racist group in fire-bombing the home of Holocaust-denier Ernst Zundel (James Bronskill, National Post, November 22, 1999). ” The report by SIRC chastised the Service for not respecting the principles of “fairness and justice” during their investigations.

In one of the most disturbing cases regarding security breaches, a CSIS agent was dismissed from her position after a briefcase full of documents was stolen from her car parked near the Air Canada Centre in Toronto – she was apparently taking in a Maple Leafs game. The National Post (Stewart Bell, February 04, 2000) reported:

“On September 29, 1999, an agent signed out classified material for two weeks so she could take it home to study. On October 10, 1999, during a visit to Toronto, her car was vandalized and the briefcase containing the documents was stolen. By the time police caught the thieves, the briefcase had been abandoned in a nearby dumpster. The documents were never found.”

CSIS believes that the documents were taken to a Toronto landfill and buried along with the city’s garbage. The three smash-and-grab artists were apparently drug addicts looking for items to hock for money. They apparently had no idea of the national importance the documents represented. It was indicated in several newspaper articles that the document stolen was an advanced copy of the “Annual Operational Report” that contained broad information regarding activities and strategic plans for the coming year.

In another interesting CSIS story, a CSIS agent lost her job after it was revealed to the media that she told her lover details of sensitive operations. (I’ll try to get more details on this one, ‘cause everyone loves tales of gossip and sex).

That’s probably enough for today. Next time, which will likely be next week as I have some papers to do, I’ll provide detailed information of the Heritage Front Affair and how CSIS went against their intuition and developed Grant Bristow as a human source.

ENDNOTES:

1. SIRC’s total budget for the 1997-1998 fiscal year was $1,406,000 and $1,403,000 in 1996-1997. The annual report can be found on the SIRC web-site at www.sirc-csars.gc.ca/annual

2. With regards to budget restraints, and the impact it has had on the Service, the 1998 CSIS REPORT (p. 9) states, “The Service has been subject to the Government’s fiscal restraint program since the early 1990s. Budget reductions have inevitably impacted both human and financial resource levels.” For example, the total budget for CSIS in 1993-1993 was $244 million (including capital costs for construction) to a low of $165 million in 1996-1997. The projected budget for 2001-2002 is approximately $167 million (p. 10)

3. Richardson, Jeffrey T. and Ball, Desmond. The Ties That Bind: Intelligence Cooperation Between the UKUSA Countries – The United Kingdom, the United States of America, Canada, Australia and New Zealand (2nd Edition). Unwin Hyman, Australia: 1990 [1985].

Matt Lauder:
CSIS Information Series
Matt Lauder is the director of the "anti-racism" program at the Guelph and District Multicultural Centre.  He posed as a person against anti-white government policies in an attempt to spy on and misdirect Racialist and Nationalist groups in Canada.  He failed.  

Matt Lauder suggested that Nationalist groups in Canada "become more radical".  We on the Freedom-Site have always known Matt was not to be trusted,  and we posted his articles to show his "anti-racist" buddies just what he was up to.

The Strange Case of Matt Lauder by Marc Lemire

 

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