Masthead graphic based on a painting by Gudrun Thriemer.

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Joe Friesen, "CSIS turning to natives in search of information," Globe and Mail, November 29, 2008.

  “I felt I had a civic responsibility to my community and to my nation to let people know that...CSIS is watching native people.”
Thomas Deer


Over the past 18 months, CSIS agents have approached several people with ties to the Kahnawá:ke Mohawk reserve south of Montreal and invited them to clandestine meetings.

According to the Mohawks who spoke to CSIS, the spies wanted information on native groups leading blockades in Ontario and were trying to assess the strength of political and religious factions within Mohawk communities. The spies said they did similar work in native communities across the country, raising the possibility that dozens of aboriginal groups are being assessed as potential threats to Canada's national security.

Former CSIS director Reid Morden said he was surprised to hear the spy agency is targeting natives. Such an initiative would have to have been approved at the ministerial level or higher, he said.

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