If truth is the first casualty of war, logic is often the first casualty of terrorism. Especially in the Canadian editorial pages. Once fashionable notions that death-cult Bin Ladenism is somehow a coherent political movement based around a sensible critique of American ugliness, or one inclined to spare gentle Canada from its reactionary wrath (providing we behave), are nowhere near as ubiquitous as when columnist Andrew Coyne was assembling his rouge's gallery. It took 11 years and two attempted attacks but the message of terrorism, it seems, is finally getting through. At some point, "I want to kill you" is simply too hard to misinterpret.
Western radicalism appears to be triggered by an individual's feelings of alienation and a need for identity and purpose. Perhaps if Aaron Yoon, Ali Medlej and Xristos Katrisoubas had been able to attend schools where they felt welcomed and part of a larger community, they would be alive and well today.
Earlier this month, the Supreme Court of Canada began hearing an appeal from Mohammad Momin Khawaja, a former Ottawa software developer convicted of several terrorism-related offences. Whatever the court's decision, defining "terrorism" and its related terms will continue to be controversial in Canada and across the globe.