Canada and U.S. authorities are talking about extending cross-border security measures that were implemented for the 2010 Olympics in Vancouver and were to end with the closing of the Winter Games.
The joint patrols [RCMP and the U.S. Coast Guard] will end with the Paralympics but spokesmen from the two agencies said yesterday legislation that would allow joint maritime policing on a permanent basis is on the agenda of both the U.S. and Canadian governments."
That's just an Olympic rebranding of Bill C-60, the amusingly named Keeping Canadians Safe (Protecting Borders) Act, tabled in Parliament in November.
The Cons actually sidelined C-60 when they prorogued Parliament, but as The Library of Parliament helpfully points out, not passing parliament didn't prevent its implementation during the Games because C-60 is but the legislative arm of the earlier Security and Prosperity Partnership inspired Shiprider Projects and the Canada-US Framework Agreement on Integrated Cross-Border Maritime Law Enforcement Operations signed in May 2009 by Canadian Minister of Public Safety Peter Van Loan, and the US Department of Homeland Security Secretary Janet "9/11 terrorists entered the US from Canada" Napolitano.
Fun quote from that 2009 signing :
Van Loan said the pact shouldn't be viewed as Americans encroaching on the jurisdiction of Canada because it's a joint effort.
"Because of the integration of our North American economies ... effective management of the border is essential to the health of both of our countries' economies."
At the time we were advised that the Canadian border proved an unmanageable obstacle to the US ability to pursue bad guys into Canada, conjuring up memories of old movies in which a car chase ends in an obligatory squeal of tires and a cloud of dust before a government road sign that reads "You are now entering ....".
It was always crap of course as even Stockwell Day acknowledged back in October 2006 that "U.S. agents carry out investigations in Canada without the knowledge or approval of the Canadian government" but we just retroactively approve them anyway.
C-60 seeks to embed part of that practise into Canadian law. Clause 11 :
"In the course of an integrated cross-border operation, every designated officer is a peace officer in every part of Canada and has the same power to enforce an Act of Parliament as a member of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police."
In every part of Canada. Same power as the RCMP.
The Library of Parliament page on C-60 also advises that passing C-60 will necessitate changes to "the Criminal Code, the Customs Act, the Export and Import Permits Act, the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act and the Royal Canadian Mounted Police Act."
Then there's that big fat Homeland Security Olympic Coordination Center in Bellingham built to augment NorthComm's bi-lateral Civil Assistance Plan, which already "allows the military from one nation to support the armed forces of the other nation during a civil emergency."
The collaboration of "40 U.S. federal, state and local agencies, including military intelligence groups, the navy, national guard, air force, coast guard" and assorted Canadian security agencies was mandated to "specifically co-ordinate the U.S. response to any terrorist attack or domestic emergency during the Winter Games."
They'd like to extend that now too.
Well we knew that.
As the FBI Special-Agent-in-Charge announced back in Sept. 2008 :
"This facility will provide a strategic response platform to facilitate critical response efforts during the Olympic Games and beyond."
And beyond. We've now reached 'and beyond'.
h/t Dave : Told ya so.