Last Friday the Harper government added to Monday's parliamentary agenda debate over Bill S-7, which has been stuck in the bureaucratic maze for months. Bill S-7 promises a few goodies that are dear to the hearts of Harper's law-and-order fanatics. More police powers, fewer rights for citizens.
On Monday, while the parliamentary debate was underway and hours after they had scheduled a news conference, the RCMP arrested two terror suspects who had been under surveillance for at least a year and by the RCMP's own admission were not an immediate threat.
Such serendipitous timing cannot be mere coincidence.
Such craven manipulation of the public, the parliamentary process, the media, and the police is unprecedented in modern Canada.
At their afternoon press conference the RCMP shocked the nation with the news that no less a terror hegemon than al-Qaeda itself was behind this plot to attack a passenger train. And not just any old al-Qaeda; al-Qaeda in Iran!
The greatest state sponsor of terror in the world, according to our friends in Israel. A nation so far beyond the pale of civilized discourse that our own John Baird slapped them with the closure of our embassy six months ago, a move that baffled the professional diplomatic corps in Canada and beyond
In Canada, the Tory publicity stunt had the desired effect; acres of hysterical hand-wringing across the news horizon.
In media outlets around the world there was a tone of skepticism. Experts everywhere puzzled over this Iranian al-Qaeda which was ostensibly directing terror operations in Canada. A previously unknown branch of al-Qaeda choosing a target that has been absolutely terror-free since 9/11.
Unknown for the simple reason that the Sunni al-Qaeda has always been an enemy of Shiite Iran and vise versa.
But for Harper, Baird, Toews, MacKay and the rest of the paranoid hate-mongers in the Conservative cabinet, it was mission accomplished.
Not only had they brought terror front and centre in a country that doesn't have any; they managed to implicate Iran!
And that's got to be a home run in the eyes of Ottawa's law and order crowd.