Sunday, July 05, 2020

Canada Day 2020: Far-Right Rally Tries, Fails to Storm the Hill and Armed QAnon Believer Attempts to Enter Rideau Hall

With promises of thousands of people showing and multiple suggestions that there would be violence if they were opposed, a far-right rally which had been planned since shortly after the election last year took place on Canada Day in downtown Ottawa, and was mostly uneventful. All the video and photos of the event as well as our on the ground presence suggest that around 400 people showed up.
Conclusive numbers are difficult for an event like this, as there were many people in the area of Parliament Hill just trying to enjoy Canada Day. Nevertheless the patriots will take any opportunity to inflate their numbers. Even the easily disproved suggestion that 10,000 people were on parliament hill, is still a far cry from the 20,000+ that organizer Mark Friesen wanted. 
And that is so often the story when the far-right organizes events. They've been planning this for 8 months, pulled people in from all around the country and only managed a gathering of around 400 people. In contrast a BLM march took place weeks earlier which was attended by around 7000 people that were mostly local to Ottawa, and was only planned a week or two beforehand. 

The event was attended by the usual cadre of far-right groups. Members of The Canadian Combat Coalition, Northern Guard, Urban Infidels, and the Yellow Vests were present, as well as neo-Nazis Paul Fromm and Tomas Liko. White nationalist Derek Harrison of Plaid Army also attended. There were many people wearing QAnon and Free North Patriots paraphernalia who are heavily associated with the "End the Lockdown" protests.
One of the many QAnon signs at the Canada Day rally
Paul Fromm at the Canada Day Rally
Bonehead Tomas Liko at the Canada Day Rally. Seems he left his Skrewdriver shirt at home.
Derek Harrison on the left

The QAnon conspiracy theorists were so pervasive at the rally that right-wing right-wing grifter Norman Traversy led his crowd in a chant of the QAnon slogan"where we go one we go all". Traversy's GoFundMe campaign that was originally started in order to bring criminal charges against Justin Trudeau for the SNC Lavalin scandal, but was thrown out due to lack of evidence (because of course it was,) has raised over $120,000. Traversy has shifted legal gears and is claiming that Justin Trudeau is responsible for, among other things, child trafficking and the Robert Pickton murders.

During the Canada Day rally he led a march to the U.S. embassy where he attempted to deliver a legal document calling for Mexico and the United States to investigate Trudeau, due to a misinterpretation of the UMSCA trade law. As the UMSCA agreement took effect on July 1, many in the patriot movement believe that Trump now controls Canada, and an investigation and imprisonment and/or execution of Trudeau is imminent.

Traversy, who insisted that US embassy officials were expecting the document delivery, failed to actually deliver the paperwork, as... no one was there to accept it. He brushed that off though, claiming it had already been emailed.

Later in the week he delivered the the documents to the Mexican embassy, but didn't know the name of the Mexican president, instead asking it be delivered to "President Maduro," the Venezuelan president.

The Q Reddit account allegedly gave a shout out, acknowledging the rally:

Another concern was the presence of gun rights activists, and "Boogaloo Bois", who were recently covered in a report by CBC News.


Chris Vanderweide apparently violated his bail restrictions and was arrested for setting off fireworks.
Vanderweide, Leigh Stuart, and Jordan Justein at the rally

PPC leader Maxime Bernier gave a speech during the rally where he spoke out against supposed "globalism", multiculturalism, and the U.N.

From Lily's YouTube channel
Kevin Johnston took some time away from losing multi-million dollar defamation suits to give a speech declaring his intention to run for mayor of the city of Calgary. Yeah, that happened. Giving him a platform is a perfect way to take away any legitimacy your rally ever had.

From Rick Boswick's YouTube channel

There was a table set up on Parliament Hill with bottles of water. They were initially trying to sell the bottles but were told by security that sales are not permitted on Parliament Hill and they would either have to move or give them away. According to our contact on the ground, they overheard the attendees bragging about how caring they were for bringing free water for everyone.

Photo taken by rally attendee
More seriously, on July 2nd an armed man allegedly rammed his truck through the gates of Rideau Hall. Canadian Reservist Corey Hurren was charged with 22 offences, mostly related to firearms. Of concern were his social media posts related to the QAnon conspiracy theories. It is unclear at this point whether or not he attended the rally on Parliament Hill.

Alleged Rideau Hall Attacker Corey Hurren
The far-right are now supporting the alleged actions of Corey Hurren and claiming that he'd just had enough of Trudeau and acted rationally. He's also being touted as a hero. At the same time many of them are also calling the incident a "false-flag event".
Regardless of how people view the incident at Rideau Hall and the rally on Parliament Hill, it's impossible to deny the connection between QAnon conspiracy beliefs, and what we would describe as a terrorist act against a current Prime Minister.

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