Monday, February 28, 2011

Extremists Furthering Islamic Agenda in Canada

By: Steve Bachman

On February 24, 2011, world-renowned American professor of Serbian origin Dr Srdja Trifkovic, after being detained at the Vancouver International Airport for over 6 hours, was declared inadmissible for entering Canada on the grounds of being a “prescribed senior official" in the Republika Srpska government. However, Dr Trifkovic has never held any position (and definitely not a senior one) in the R.S. government. The only association he had to the Government of Republika Srpska was being an expert on foreign affairs with links at the Bosnian Serb leadership. Therefore, Dr Trifkovic wasn’t a senior official and the only argument given for the denied access for entering Canada was a lie.

But where did all this start? The roots of the Trifkovic controversy go back to a murky extremist organization notorious for spreading fabrications that suit their own interest and denying genocide. The so-called “Institute for Research of Genocide in Canada” is far from what its name suggests. From the title, one would assume that the organization deals with researching the genocide committed against the First Nations in Canada, but the group was actually formed by Bosnian Muslims, for the interests of Bosnian Muslims, with a focus on promoting the idea that the Srebrenica massacre was a genocide. While that issue is disputed, this extremist group actually denies the genocide committed by Turks in Armenia and even downplays the genocide committed by Croatian and Muslim forces against Serbs during World War II. It seems that genocide is not their concern.

The leader of the “Institute”, Emir Ramic, who lives in Hamilton, Ontario (originally from Prijedor in Bosnia & Herzegovina) with his wife Kijana Jahic Ramic (originally from Bosanska Dubica in B&H), supports Ilija Jurisic, a Bosnian war criminal who was sentenced to 12 years in prison for attacking a Yugoslav Army column in Tuzla killing at least 51 people and wounding 50. Ramic also strongly supported Rasim Delic, a Bosnian Muslim general, in charge of the Mujahedeen division of “El Mujahid” during the Bosnian war, who was found guilty by the Hague Tribunal on the charge for failure to prevent or punish the cruel treatment of twelve captured Serb soldiers in the village of Livade and in the Kamenica camp (three incidents between 1993 and 1995). On the Internet, Ramic is also a member of a group called “Thank Allah I’m not Serbian” which has a burning Serbian and Israeli flag as a group picture.

Ramic’s so-called “Institute” became interested in Srdja Trifkovic after a lecture by Dr Trifkovic was scheduled to be held at the University of British Columbia on February 24, 2011. The “Institute” immediately sent letters to UBC President Stephen Toope, calling Srdja Trifkovic a genocide-denier. If Trifkovic was a genocide-denier, he would’ve been the first to give a keynote speech at the Yad Vashem Centre in Jerusalem, where he condemned the Genocide in Yugoslavia during World War II. It’s also interesting that the Lower House of the Canadian Parliament called Dr Trifkovic to testify on Kosovo in 2000. In 2003 and 2008, Dr Trifkovic appeared in front of the Hague Tribunal as an expert witness, never himself accused of any illegal actions, let alone war crimes. For over a decade he was the director of the Centre for International Affairs at the Rockford Institute. Dr Trifkovic has been the Foreign Affairs editor of “Chronicles” magazine since 1998, and he has worked as a journalist for BBC Radio, Voice of America, U.S. News & World Report, Washington Times, etc.

All this didn’t stop the extremist “Institute” from using every lever at their disposal to spill slander at world-renowned Dr Trifkovic. For this task at UBC, they employed a student activist and International Relations major at UBC by the name of Ana Komnenic. In an article written by Micki Cowan for the Ubyssey, Komnenic accused Dr Trifkovic of being “Islamophobic” and a “Bosnian Genocide denier”. “I think that clubs have a lot of liberty to invite whoever they want, but I think it’s sort of on the clubs to be cautious and respectful and careful about who they invite and who that could offend,” she said. “Of course, a lot of speakers will be controversial, I know that, but I think there is a line that needs to be drawn.” Apparently, the line is crossed when someone attacks Komnenic’s opinions. Ana Komnenic’s boyfriend, Remie Abi-Farrage, is member of the UBC Arab Students Association and has been very active in promoting Islamic fundamentalist interests on UBC and in Vancouver, BC.

It is not clear at this point who was in charge of fabricating information that Dr Trifkovic held a senior official position in the government of Republika Srpska and sending this false information to the Canadian Immigration authorities. The matter will be thoroughly investigated and the perpetrators of these offenses will be brought to justice. Lying to government officials is certainly not accepted in Canada, especially not with the goal of furthering extremist Islamist goals. Free speech is something that the Canadian people highly value and the fact that extremist Muslims and their supporters don’t agree with Dr Trifkovic’s viewpoints doesn’t give them the right to lie in order to prevent Dr Trifkovic from speaking in this democratic country.

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