Ottawa intelligence warns of ‘violent retaliation’ after shutdown of Ottawa ‘Freedom Convoy’

Police dispersal of ‘Freedom Convoy’ protesters in Ottawa last winter could spark ‘opportunistic attacks’ on politicians and government figures, according to newly released documents federal intelligence agency warned decision makers.

Feb. 24 “Threat Highlights” marked Secret/Canadian Eyes Only, citing extremist “influencers” as continuing recruitment and It also advised using the results of the protests for propaganda purposes.

Ideologically motivated extremists are likely to use police enforcement “to facilitate violent revenge or as further evidence of government ‘tyranny’,” the four-page assessment said. ing.

The partially redacted memo, obtained by the Canadian Press through the Access to Information Act, describes several integrated terrorisms created before, during and after the protests that paralyzed downtown Ottawa for three weeks starting in late January. It was one of the evaluation center’s analyzes.

Overseen by the Canadian Security Intelligence Agency, the center brings together security and intelligence experts from various agencies to draft terrorist threat assessments based on classified and open source information and share them with national and international partners. increase.

Its purpose is to provide senior decision makers with the latest and most detailed information to assess overall threat and risk levels.

Many of the protesters took to the streets of central Ottawa in heavy trucks to protest against COVID-19 health measures and Justin Trudeau’s liberal government. The influx, which includes some participants with roots in the far-right movement, has forced many businesses to close their doors and aggravate residents with noise, diesel fumes and harassment.

On February 14, the government invoked the state of emergency law, allowing temporary measures such as restricting and banning gatherings, designating safe locations, instructing banks to freeze assets, and banning support for attendees. .

Authorities towed trucks, arrested more than 200 people and charged hundreds.

Militant ideologues compared the government’s tactics to those of foreign dictatorships, portraying the police response as “brutal” and the use of emergency laws as further evidence of federal “tyranny.” It added that some online agitation to incite violence had surfaced, with some implying that direct action against politicians, police and even their families was the only remaining option.

After the #Ottawa protests went into lockdown, intelligence agencies said there was a possibility of ‘violent revenge’. #CDNPoli #FreedomConvoy #CSIS #IMVE #EmergenciesAct

Barbara Perry, director of the Center for Hate, Prejudice and Extremism at the Ontario Institute of Technology, said, “This is what usually happens in these kinds of movements.

“When you resist them, they see that they are under attack, that their assessment is correct, that they are silenced, that they are alienated and threatened by that tyrannical state. They use it as further proof that they are doing what they want.”

“Freedom convoys” and related protests at government buildings and border crossings have become a popular movement among supporters of ideologically motivated violent extremism (IMVE), according to a Feb. 24 assessment. It aroused anti-authority sentiment.

“The perception that societal resilience is fragile, or that government/police responses justify violent resistance, will inspire single actors or small groups inspired by IMVE to engage politicians or government symbols. could launch opportunistic attacks against,” the analyst concluded. .

“IMVE proponents have used anti-government sentiment and protest movements, whether related to the pandemic or other issues, in an attempt to undermine public trust and social cohesion and attract vulnerable individuals to ideological causes. encourage and continue to use.”

Protests may calm down as public health restrictions are eased in the future, but those who embrace violent extremism, especially those who want to accelerate the demise of the current social and political order. “People who think they are” are unlikely to be appeased, the assessment says.

“The IMVE threat to politicians and symbols of government will continue for the foreseeable future.”

The capital will see follow-up protests, including a procession in late June involving many figures associated with the winter event.

“They really set the stage and got more people involved in a broader distrust of all these institutions – governments, science, academics, the media,” Perry said. I think we will continue to find ways to take advantage of, and take advantage of, or at least exacerbate, the grievances we create.”

The Center for Terrorism Assessment began tracking convoys of trucks bound for Ottawa as early as January 26, producing a secret assessment of potential opportunistic violence in the margins of the protest.

A coordinated terrorist attack or a premeditated attack on the Capitol or any other federal facility is unlikely, according to the Feb. 3 analysis.

“The most likely IMVE-related scenario is the use of available weapons and resources, such as knives, firearms, homemade explosives and vehicles, in public areas against soft targets, including opposition groups and civilians. It’s about lonely actors who get rations.”

This report by the Canadian Press was first published on August 17, 2022.

Ottawa intelligence warns of ‘violent retaliation’ after shutdown of Ottawa ‘Freedom Convoy’

Source link Ottawa intelligence warns of ‘violent retaliation’ after shutdown of Ottawa ‘Freedom Convoy’

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