On Wednesday we'll be having a special fundraiser at SteynOnline. Here's why:
Longtime readers may still dimly recall the name of Khurrum Awan, the Osgoode Hall law student who, at last year's Steyn/Maclean's "flagrant Islamophobia" show trial in Vancouver, simultaneously played the roles of plaintiff, co-counsel, expert witness, and official representative of the Muslims of British Columbia, despite being a resident of Ontario. If this sounds like some low-budget production at a theatrical fringe festival in which Khurrum plays all seven brides in Seven Brides For Seven Brothers (oh, okay, and the brothers, too), you're missing the point: in assuming the plaintiff/counsel/expert/entire-Muslim-population role, Mr Awan was demonstrating the economies of scale that Canada's "human rights" regime brings to fusty concepts like "justice".
Of course, Khurrum wasn't the "plaintiff" in any tiresome legal sense. He was merely the lead sock puppet for Mohammed Elmasry, head honcho of the Canadian Islamic Congress but a man whose public support for Jew-killing makes him a problematic frontman for the cause of a "hate-free" Canada. So Khurrum was sent out into the world as leader singer of the Sock Puppet Five, subsequently the Four Socks, then the Socktown Trio, later Socky and Cher, and finally, as Elmo's sole surviving sock, the celebrity entertainment for the launch of The Canadian Charger.
In the latest development of his solo career, Socky has now decided to sue Ezra Levant. The complaint introduces several novel legal concepts, including psychic defamation - Ezra should have known that the words that appeared in The Toronto Star under Khurrum Awan's name were apparently not by Awan but by some no-name Star sub-editor who'd whimsically decided to introduce them to Khurrum's copy. We also have the bizarre charge that, by explicitly noting that Awan told the truth under oath, Ezra therefore accused him of perjury.
Khurrum Awan may be too stupid even for employment as an identity-group grievance-monger in latterday Trudeaupia. Although the libel notice purports to be the work of Brian Shiller, the semi-literate rambling and pronoun confusion betrays its true author:
During Mr. Awan's media appearances related to the Maclean's case, he was very courteous and respectful with all the media that interviewed me.
Gee, you'd think when you hire a bigshot mouthpiece like Brian Shiller he'd have the gal in the typing pool read through the thing before they mail it out. Whatever the signature at the bottom, the provenance is clear: Mr Shiller is serving as the sock puppet's sock puppet.
Which raises many interesting questions. Mr Shiller is also the lawyer for prominent Internet Nazi Richard Warman and dinner-theatre ethnic comic Warren Kinsella in their own libel suits against Ezra. Evidently, Messrs Shiller are the one-stop shop for all your Levant SLAPP needs. Is Mr Shiller offering a group rate for suits against Ezra? Is he working up to a class-action? Whatever the reason, this is a strange coalition: two men who've respectively been employed and honoured by the Canadian Jewish Congress yoked with the youth president of a Canadian Islamic Congress whose then leader announced on TV his support for terrorism against Jews. In this freakshow alliance, you begin to see the scale of the Canadian Jewish Congress' foolish embrace of the opportunist poseur Warman.
Nonetheless, fighting off nuisance suits that are well-funded costs money. Ezra Levant has been the indispensable man in the battle to restore Canada's lost liberties, and I have been proud to stand with him this last year-and-a-half. So, as we did on Warman Wednesday last year, this week we'll be holding a Khurrum Awadnesday over at the Steyn Store to raise a little dough for Ezra's legal bills. Hope you'll swing by. As I told an audience of cabinet ministers and Tory, Liberal and Bloquiste MPs and Senators a few weeks back, in a sane world a real hero like Ezra would be the one getting fitted for the Order of Canada. Instead, it's all too easy, as Scaramouche posits, to picture a thuggish buffoon like Mr Awan being received at Rideau Hall.
Without Ezra's efforts, Canada's mainstream newspapers would not have picked up on this issue, and declared against the state censorship licensed by Section 13. Without Ezra, the Canadian "Human Rights" Tribunal would not have felt obliged to open up its secret trial of Marc Lemire to the public. Without Ezra, a "human rights" judge would not have rebuked Richard Warman for his Nazi activities, and the Commission would not have begun cutting him loose. Canadians who value freedom owe this man a lot. Ezra has shown real courage at a huge cost to a young family these last couple of years. Let's stand with him. As he says:
To battle stations!