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Fine line between hate and terrorism: murder is murder

By Phil Gurski      

The Air India terrorist attack of June 23, 1985, should be up there as well as it was the largest single terrorist attack prior to 9/11 but it does not seem to have resonated as much, perhaps because the aircraft went down off the coast of Ireland and not in Canada where the bombs were manufactured and placed in the luggage hold.

Air India 182 memorial in Toronto. Photograph courtesy of Wikipedia
OTTAWA—We in Canada have, thankfully, few dates that will ‘live in infamy’ to cite former U.S. president Franklin D. Roosevelt in the wake of the attack on Pearl Harbor (9/11 would fit into this category as well). When it comes to Canada I suppose many would cite the École Polytechnique massacre on Dec. 6, 1989, when 14 women were killed by a gunman. The Air India terrorist attack of June 23, 1985, should be up there as well as it was the largest single terrorist attack prior to 9/11 but it does not seem to have resonated as much, perhaps because the aircraft went down off the coast of Ireland and not in Canada where the bombs were manufactured and placed in the luggage hold. There may be other dates that slip my mind at this point and I apologize if I have missed any major ones.

To this mercifully short list we now have to add Jan. 29 of last year when a gunman entered a mosque in Québec City and opened fire, killing six. This was truly a horrific act of violence perpetrated in a place of worship against innocent people and it is hoped that the young man behind it will serve many years in prison for his crime.

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