Kinsman: Who had the right response to the Boston Marathon attack, Justin Trudeau or Stephen Harper?

By: /
April 19, 2013
Jeremy Kinsman
Former ambassador to the European Union and high commissioner to Britain

You’re playing into the “gotcha” game. Leave that to the court media stenos in the Ottawa bureau.

Trudeau spoke in the moment, baffled as we all were as to why someone could do something so grotesque. We do need to know why, for security’s sake, and if it were a “marginalized” member of our society, for social remedy.

But now we know who they are. Cast memory back to the Chechen terrorist capture of a children’s school at Beslan, holding a theatre audience in murderous hostage in Moscow, blowing up planes, rock concerts, whole apartments and passengers on the Moscow metro. Books have been written about the “alienation” of Chechen terrorists and their cult of cruelty and victimization. This time, it was terrorism for its own sake, seemingly in some kind of hate-America psychosis. How come they came to hate it so?

Harper, like Putin did then (“Well kill them in their outhouses”), channels our anger and stands for harsh justice. He doesn’t wonder about why they do it. He wants that secondary consideration placed at the centre of his frame of Trudeau as a touchy-feely sissy, not equipped to lead. But Harper’s game was too obvious by far.

They both should have channeled Obama: We’ll get them; We’ll find out why they did it; Boston and America will keep on running.