I have been alternately angry with and disappointed with my government for weeks. This is why:
That's Abousfian Abdelrazik, a Canadian citizen who's been trapped in Sudan for years. He traveled their to visit his sick mother and was jailed and tortured on suspicions of terrorism at the recommendation of the Canadian Security Intelligence Service (CSIS). Years have passed, Mr. Abdelrazik has been cleared of any suspicion by both the RCMP and CSIS and yet the Canadian government won't let him come home.
The girl in the picture is his daughter who he hasn't seen since he first left Canada.
There's more to the story. For the past year he's slept on a cot in the Canadian embassy and suffered declining health. The government sets requirements Mr. Abdelrazik has to meet in order to come home and when he does they shift the goalpost. The government refuses to inform Canadians just why it is that a Canadian citizen is being locked out of his country. But the core of it is this - The Canadian government has failed in it's legal and moral responsibilities to this man.
That leaves it up to Canadians to bring him home.
I figure that the only reason the Harper government won't bring him home is that they fear the political consequences of doing so. His presence might spark scandal in regards to the Canadian government committing acts of torture by proxy. Therefore the only way to get him home is by making the failure to bring him home even more politically dangerous.
So here's what I think. I think we need to turn up the heat. I think that every Canuck (although Americans are welcome too) blogger reading this needs to either stick this post on their blog (I don't care about copyright concerns in regards to this) or write their own.
I think those who read this need to go to this site, print out some postcards and mail them off the Lawrence Cannon. Then print out 10, 20 or 50 more and pass them out to friends and family to mail in. I think we all need to write letters to Stephen Harper and Lawrence Cannon.
I think we need to hound our MPs even if they aren't Tories to make them pressure the government on this matter.
I think we need to comb the resources at http://peoplescommission.org/abdelrazik.php#cresources, print out and distribute what we can and see if there are any upcoming rallies we can take part in.
I think we need to write letters to editors across the country.
I think we need to start a meme to end all memes and get the word out there so that Canadians can help save a fellow citizen.
And I think we all need to send a note to Mr. Abdelrazik at firstname.lastname@example.org so he knows we haven't forgotten about him and we'll get him home so he can see his daughter again.
The government of Canada may have failed one of it's own but that doesn't mean the rest of us have to. Please, let's get him home.