University of Toronto Magazine University of Toronto Magazine
Summer 2005

Learning Lessons from 9/11

Canada needs a long-term strategy to combat terrorism, prof says

When it comes to learning lessons from the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks and the war on terror, Canada still has a long way to go, says a University of Toronto security intelligence expert.

In his paper, “Learning Lessons (and How) in the War on Terror,” Professor Wesley Wark of U of T’s Munk Centre for International Studies argues that – despite the federal government’s effort to safeguard Canada from terrorist threats by implementing legal measures such as Bill C-36 and beefing up military spending – the government still has not convinced the public that their safety is at risk. “At the end of the day, you can have all the government initiatives you like, but if you don’t have public support, you’re going to have a failed policy with possibly serious consequences,” says Wark, whose paper was published in the International Journal.

Wark says the government’s response to the 9/11 attacks was appropriate but now it needs to have a long-term strategy to combat terrorism. He also calls for more transparency and accountability within security agencies.

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  1. One Response to “ Learning Lessons from 9/11 ”

  2. Professor Wesley Wark seems to suggest that Canadians are not frightened enough of a potential terrorist attack. One lesson of 9/11 is that governments can use fear as a lever to deprive citizens of basic freedoms and rights. Judging by the number of terrorist attacks we have experienced in Canada over the past 30 years, I think the Canadian public has its level of fearfulness just about right.

    Jim Reynolds
    MA 1970
    Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario