It’s that bad

Intelligence agencies are (unsurprisingly) cagey about their activities. Every time we get a chance to peek under the mask, we learn more about how bad it is. The Liberals, who inherited Conservative policy that characterizes environmentalists and indigenous activists (there is plenty of overlap) as a domestic terrorist threat, have done little more than spew hot air, keeping the worst of the human rights violations from Conservative policy.

This is what that looks like.

The records detailing monitoring of individual activists and leaders speak to a larger pattern of surveillance against non-violent dissent, Indigenous-led social movements and their allies. As APTN reported in relation to the documents referring to Thomas-Muller, RCMP records also listed a number of groups as “involved persons,” including “the Defenders of the Land, Direct Action in Canada for Climate Justice, Ontario Public Interest Research Group, Ruckus Society, Global Justice Ecology Project, Sea to Sands Conservation Alliance, Canadian Youth Climate Coalition, the Indigenous Action Movement and the Wet’suwet’en Direct Action Camp.” In 2014, the British Columbia Civil Liberties Association (BCCLA) filed complaints against both the RCMP and CSIS, alleging unlawful surveillance against opponents of Northern Gateway that included many of the same organizations. While the Civilian Review and Complaints Commission for the RCMP launched an independent investigation, the Security Intelligence Review Committee (SIRC) (the body responsible for CSIS oversight) instead held a series of secret hearings. They issued a decision in 2015, but barred the BCCLA from speaking about the outcome. The BCCLA has since applied for judicial review of this decision.

Just last month, documents obtained by VICE News demonstrate that the RCMP surveilled Indigenous activists who constructed a Tipi on Parliament Hill as part of Idle No More’s Unsettling Canada 150, a campaign coinciding with 150 years since Canadian confederation. Idle No More has come under government scrutiny on other occasions: in 2015 documents obtained by APTN confirmed that Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development (AAND, now INAC) shared information about peaceful protests led by the group with Canada’s spy agency, the Canadian Security Intelligence Service (CSIS), and passed on information about meetings between government and First Nations leaders to the Integrated Terrorism Assessment Centre (ITAC), the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) and others.

Read more here.



  1. says

    And what’s really interesting is that they’re only using that sort of technology to track certain groups and not others.
    indicates that there may be surveillance chats of fascist marchers organizing before the rally in Charlottesville – you know – the kind of surveillance that would have had FBI agents flocking en masse to join, if it was antifa or BLM or the Weathermen.

    (also, rather obviously, they went after anti-trump rally participants and did nothing at Charlottesville. There’s no justice. None.)

  2. Siobhan says

    @1 Marcus Ranum

    (also, rather obviously, they went after anti-trump rally participants and did nothing at Charlottesville. There’s no justice. None.)

    Those insidious criminals who had the audacity to be run over by James Fields were the ones subpeona’d for a grand jury over A12. The naive think they just want their testimony to secure charges against the Literal Nazis; they are, perhaps, unaware of grand juries being used as fishing expeditions to smash activist movements. I shake with rage knowing the DA would rather jail people who have been maimed, most of them permanently, especially knowing the state of prison healthcare.