Ottawa Citizen | Monday, April 08, 2002 | V. Walter Halchuk

Canadian war-crimes process is a farce and insulting

V. Walter Halchuk
The Ottawa Citizen

Monday, April 08, 2002
Re: When not to prosecute a war criminal, March 19, 2002.

Some, such as letter-writer Howard Margolian, say that special-interest groups and identity politics have "prejudiced the right of various accused to a fair trial." Yet every person indicted in Canada for allegedly committing Nazi war crimes or accused of lying about their wartime records to enter Canada has enjoyed the full due process of Canada's denaturalization and deportation policy.

This policy, according to Will Zuzak, who has studied the "war crimes" prosecution issue for more than two decades, is a process wherein, during a hypothetical interview (that no one can prove took place a half century ago), the accused was asked a hypothetical question (that no one can prove was asked), to which the accused gave a hypothetical response (that no one can prove he did), that is today judged to have been probably untrue and to have been material when it was hypothetically given.

These war-crimes cases are being decided on a balance of probabilities, not on reasonable doubt, and there is no appeal of a Federal Court decision. Why are the standards of guilt lowered?

Canada is not a haven for Nazi war criminals, and its denaturalization and deportation policy is a farce and insults those who fought the Nazis. Is it any wonder these cases, once launched and recognized for what they are, drag on interminably?

V. Walter Halchuk,