Canada: Ottawa library faces court challenge for cancelling film depicting the Islamization of Europe

“Library faces court challenge over cancellation of controversial film,” by Blair Crawford, Ottawa Citizen, June 13, 2018:

The organizer of a screening of the controversial film Killing Europe at the Ottawa Public Library last November has applied for a judicial review of the library’s decision to cancel the showing.

Madeline Weld claims in her application, which was filed Monday in Toronto, that the library’s decision to cancel “violated (her) constitutional right to free expression” as well as the rights of the audience to see the film.

Weld argues the library “acted arbitrarily and unreasonably” by cancelling the screening and asks the court to force the library to allow the film to be shown.

Weld, a retired public servant, booked the film on behalf of ACT for Canada, an organization that says it wishes “to defend our country by speaking out in defence of our democratic values, our security and our liberty against the rise of Islamism.”

Weld is the founder of the organization’s Ottawa chapter, according to her online biography. She is also founder of Canadian Citizens for Charter Rights and Freedoms, an organization opposed to M-103, the federal government’s non-binding anti-Islamophobia motion, which passed in March 2017.

Killing Europe is a documentary by Danish ex-patriate Michael Hansen, which purports to warn of the dangers of the “Islamification” of Europe. Hansen was scheduled to give a talk after the Ottawa screening.

Critics of the film call it thinly veiled hate speech and complained to the library that the screening violated Ontario’s Human Rights Code and the library’s own policy to deny events that “are likely to promote discrimination, contempt or hatred to any person on the basis of race, national or ethnic origin, colour, religion, age, sex, marital status, family status, sexual preference, or disability, gratuitous sex and violence or denigration of the human condition.”

The library initially agreed to the screening but reversed the decision under public pressure, including a letter sent to the library and city council by prominent Ottawa human rights lawyer Richard Warman……

US to shell out $6.6mn for White Helmets ‘vital operations’ weeks after promising funding freeze

The United States will resume funding for the controversial, militant-linked White Helmets, a month after the group had its financial support frozen. The State Department also lauded the group for saving “100,000 lives” in Syria.

President Donald Trump has authorized the US State Department, in conjunction with the United States Agency for International Development, to release $6.6 million for the “vital, life-saving operations” of the so-called Syrian Civil Defense group, known colloquially as the White Helmets, and for the UN’s International, Impartial and Independent Mechanism (IIIM), a UN agency that is investigating war crimes committed during the conflict.

A statement released by State Department spokesperson Heather Nauert claimed that the White Helmets had saved more than 100,000 lives since the conflict in Syria began. The generous praise may even surprise the White Helmets – by their own estimates, they’ve only rescued some 70,000 people.

“Despicable. More money to the propagandists of the White Helmets, who so many Aleppo and Ghouta civilians say worked with or were terrorists of al-Qaeda, Jaysh al-Islam,” Eva Bartlett, an independent journalist who has made multiple trips to Syria, tweeted in response to the news.

The controversial group – which operates exclusively in militant-held areas of Syria, and whose members have been photographed and filmed fraternizing with jihadists – reportedly had its US government funding cut off in March. A CBS report claimed last month that $200 million used to fund the group, as well as other programs in Syria, were “under active review” and that the White Helmets hadn’t received US payments in weeks.