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Feb 18 , 2018


Shoulda been a jihadi, Mr. Abdi...

by Andrew Douglas
Shoulda been a jihadi, Mr. Abdi...
Due to whatever combination of nature, nurture and circumstance, Abdoul Abdi is a bad seed.
Even if, like most fair-minded people, you believe the latter two are mostly to blame — being shifted around to dozens of foster homes and group homes tends to do that to a kid — that doesn’t lessen the violence that peppers the 24-year-old’s rap sheet.
A Parole Board of Canada decision dated December 28 lays it all out in stark terms.
“In one instance, you assaulted someone with the stock of your gun by hitting him multiple times in the head; he required 14 staples to close the wounds,” the decision reads.
The gun, according to Steve Bruce’s 2014 reportage in the Chronicle Herald, was a .357 Magnum. He struck a 53-year-old cabbie not fewer than 20 times before stealing his vehicle, starting a police chase through Clayton Park that ended when he rammed into another vehicle.
When on remand for charges including attempted murder — he fired the gun a few times — the Somali refugee proved to be a bit of a handful.
“In one instance, you punched a correctional officer once in the side of the head,” reads the PBC decision.
“On another occasion, you were talking to a staff member and once within arm’s reach, you began to assault the member by punching him in the face and in the side of his head(,) breaking his glasses during the altercation.”
Another time, he kicked an officer in the head when guards were attempting to restrain him.
Once he began serving his sentence, he stabbed another inmate in the prison reception centre, which got him transferred to maximum security, and got a few months added to his sentence.
“Video footage (of the stabbing) showed you as the main aggressor during the attack,” the decision reads.
Believing that Abdoul presents an “undue risk to society by reoffending” — 50-50, to be exact — the parole board placed him in a Toronto halfway house in early January, where he’ll be closely monitored.
Because his criminal history is “rife with offences/convictions for violent and aggressive
offending both in the community and while incarcerated,” the board refused to authorize
leave privileges. 
His record as an adult began in 2013 after convictions for uttering threats towards two
people, including a sheriff’s deputy, and carrying a concealed weapon when he was 18.
“You deal with your issues through violence,” writes PBC member Mark Currie, who adds that Abdoul’s criminal history is tied to “negative associates, criminal attitudes and personal/emotional concerns.”
But although his potential for reintegration into society is deemed by the board to be low
you really have to wonder if it could possibly be lower than, say, that of the 60 or so Canadian citizens who have returned to Canada after fighting ISIS in Syria and Iraq
Because while our prime minister has defended pouring tax dollars into de-programming Canadians who formerly enjoyed liberating people of their noggins in arid climes -- “someone who has engaged and turned away from hateful ideology can be an extraordinarily powerful voice for preventing radicalism”, Justin once said, basically lumping murderous idealogues in with recovering alcoholics and sex addicts -- he can’t seem to lift one tiny finger to help a young adult who Canadian society has failed up to now.
When questioned at that Lower Sackville town hall on the fairness of Abdoul facing deportation for his crimes because he’s not a Canadian citizen -- the fault of the Community Services Department for not filing the correct paperwork while he was a ward of the state as a child -- our prime minister waxed poetic about the need for our immigration system to be “compassionate”. 
Yet, his Public Safety Minister Ralph Goodale refuses to place a temporary pause on Abdoul’s deportation process, instead forcing him to fight for it in the court system.
Speaking to the CBC’s Rosemary Barton last month, Abdoul said that he had a “breakdown” when he learned he was at risk of being shipped off to Somalia
“I don’t remember my language”, he said.
“I don’t remember nothin'.”
Despite his past penchant for crime, Abdoul Abdi was not, nor was he ever, accused of being a violent jihadist. His crimes have no ideology.
“Criminal law and kids in care go hand in hand”, he quite correctly told National host Rosemary.
But he has shown some progress over the last few years. In the months prior to his release from prison, he was transferred to medium security, according to the PBC decision, “where it is said your violent behaviour has somewhat reduced.”
A rather unenthusiastic endorsement, but it’s something, the sort of progress the Trudeau government would seemingly wholeheartedly applaud if it applied to a recovering jihadi instead of a refugee-turned garden variety bad seed whom the system has failed.
Perhaps if Abdoul upped his game, travelled to Syria on his own dime to rape, torture and behead before coming back to Canada, he’d capture the imagine of our compassionate leader?

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