Randy McDonald (rfmcdpei) wrote,
Randy McDonald

[BRIEF NOTE] On the fact that the September 11th hijackers did not enter the US from Canada, really

Janet Napolitano, Secretary of Homeland Security, recently got quite a lot of negative attention from Canadians when she said--or didn't say; it's confusing, apparently--that September 11th hijackers entered the US via Canada. (John McCain thinks the same thing, but he doesn't matter so much now. Shockingly, find myself agreeing with Rex Murphy.

It's nearly 8 years since the crash of the twin towers, and she still doesn't know - still - that all of the hijackers that brought tragedy that day - came into the USA - through their own customs and immigration ---- not one came down through the great forests of Toronto or over the tundra of Montreal, not one of them got access to the US via what Ms Napolitano thinks of as "borderless" Canada.

Must it be said to Ms Napolitano yet again? The September 11 hijackers did not enter via Canada. Sauda Arabia is not the 11th province. Mohammed Atta did not fly into New York that terrible day from Prince Edward Island. The 9-11 hijackers did not go to "flight school" in Buttonville. Canada was not, in whole or in part, the "holding room" of the 9-11 terrorists.

What is Barack Obama doing appointing someone to head Homeland Security, who, eight years after the attacks, does not even now know where the hijackers came from and how they got into their country? Here, it’s not her ignorance about Canada which should be troubling. It’s her ignorance of the most publicized event in modern American history. How can anyone be head of Homeland Security and not know the history of the 19 men who killed nearly 3,000 Americans?

This Washington Post article--from 2005--traces the origin of this urban legend to mistaken reporting by two Boston newspapers in the confusion immediately following the terrorist attacks.

The account was born in the first days after the attacks, when reporters and government investigators were scrambling to figure out how the conspirators had carried out the plot. Bernard Etzinger, a Canadian Embassy spokesman, says the "big bang" that started the legend can be traced to two Boston newspapers.

A Boston Globe story on Sept. 13 said investigators were "seeking evidence" that the hijackers came through Canada. The Boston Herald reported the same day that federal investigators believed "the terrorist suspects may have traveled . . . by boat" from Canada.

On Sept. 14, The Washington Post reported that an unnamed U.S. official had said two suspects "crossed the border from Canada with no known difficulty at a small border entry in Coburn Gore, Maine," and that others may have come through other Maine ports. On Sept. 16, that report was repeated by the New York Post, which also declared that "terrorists bent on wreaking havoc in the United States" had found Canada "the path of least resistance." On Sept. 19, the Christian Science Monitor referred to Canada as "a haven for terrorists."

"It was just one of those things where everybody says, 'We all knew that,' and it becomes irrefutable," Etzinger said.

The Vanity Press' Chet Scoville further points out that most of the five hundred or so suspicious people who entered the US from Canada in a past year are actually American citizens or landed immigrants, and that their Canadian counterparts are only a small, small minority. Blame Canada, suggests Scoville? Why not? "These are the elements of a full and comprehensive Blame Canada narrative, and one that I'm guessing will last for the forseeable future no matter who's in charge. It serves to justify American self-image. It blames others for America's own problems. It's a great way to pretend that citizenship rights don't exist in US terrorism cases. It's handy in several ways. For that reason, I suspect it will be with us for a long time."
Tags: canada, migration, nationalism, terrorism, united states
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