We can all relax now: the Associated Press reported Tuesday that “Authorities say no link to terrorism in Toronto rampage that left 2 dead, 13 injured.” Public Safety Minister Ralph Goodale declared: “At this stage, based on the state of the investigation, which is led by the Toronto police service, there is no connection between that individual and national security.” But cracks are already forming in the narrative.
The establishment media is treating the shooting as a gun control issue, and almost everyone seems to be accepting the family’s claim that gunman Faisal Hussain had “severe mental health challenges.” As to what tripped Hussain over the edge and led him to start firing randomly into Toronto restaurants, Toronto Police Chief Mark Saunders is in the dark: “We do not know why this has happened yet. It’s going to take some time.”
Maybe not as much time as Saunders would have us believe – if, that is, he is willing to go where the evidence might lead him. CBS News reported Tuesday that “investigators in Canada have indications that Faisal Hussain visited Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) websites and may have expressed support for the terrorist group, a law enforcement source told CBS News senior investigative producer Pat Milton.”
Although it seems to have made no impression on Ralph Goodale, that is a salient detail, especially in light of the fact that the Islamic State has called upon Muslims in Western countries, explicitly including Canada, to target non-Muslim civilians in lone-wolf jihad attacks. Might Faisal Hussain have seen such a call on one of the Islamic State websites that he visited, and decided to try to gain the favor of Allah by doing as the Islamic State directed?
What’s more, the mental illness narrative ran afoul of statements from those who knew Faisal Hussain. “Toronto shooter’s neighbors unaware of his mental illness” was the Associated Press headline Tuesday on a story in which Hussain’s neighbor Ashley Robinson reported that she saw Faisal Hussain “almost every day,” and that “he always was smiling.” Aamir Sukhera, whom AP identified as “a close family friend of Hussain’s,” agreed: “He had a million-dollar smile. He was very upbeat and happy whenever I saw him.” Hussain, Sukhera said, “seemed fine.” Odd observations about someone who was supposedly “struggling with psychosis and depression his entire life.”
The establishment media, meanwhile, was busy portraying Faisal Hussain and his family as the real victims of this massacre. CTV News reported: “Hussain was one of four children. Neighbours say he had a sister who died unexpectedly and a brother who is in a coma. One neighbour, Sadaf Pathan, said Hussain’s father also appeared to be dealing with health issues. The family’s circumstances appeared to weigh heavily on Hussain’s mother. ‘She always has a very serious look on her face, and she looks like she’s in so much pain,’ Pathan told The Canadian Press.”
And Leftist politicians in Canada quickly set out to exploit the murders for their own political ends: “During a debate in City Council on Tuesday, Councilman Joe Cressy asked if Toronto could outright ban guns and was informed it would be up to the federal government to change the laws. Mayor John Tory has also questioned why anybody would need a gun in Toronto. Don Peat, a spokesman for the mayor, said the Council was considering a motion urging the federal government to ban the sale of handguns and handgun ammunition in Toronto.”
All this is evidence of a society that is, quite simply, insane. Canadian officialdom in the Trudeau era has paid scant attention to the phenomenon of jihad terror, while committing itself to stamping a largely chimerical “Islamophobia.” Accordingly, when an incident takes place that bears numerous indications of being another case of jihad terrorism, it is by this time a reflexive action for authorities to ignore or deny the evidence that it was jihad, to cast about for other explanations, and to set out to make policy upon their sand castle analyses.
And so Canada will get more gun restrictions in the wake of Faisal Hussain’s jihad, but no jihad restrictions, or even any honest analysis in the mainstream of what jihad is, and why it might attract someone who was psychically marginal – if Hussain was really psychically marginal at all.
Reality will inevitably intrude upon this ridiculous little charade. But probably only after there have been many, many more incidents like the one in Toronto’s Greektown Sunday night.
Robert Spencer is the director of Jihad Watch and author of the New York Times bestsellers The Politically Incorrect Guide to Islam (and the Crusades) and The Truth About Muhammad. His latest book is The Complete Infidel’s Guide to Iran. Follow him on Twitter here. Like him on Facebook here.