RCMP - The Real Subversives

Fidler, Richard
Publisher:  Vanguard Publications, Toronto, Canada
Year Published:  1978
Resource Type:  Book
Cx Number:  CX823

A critique of the motives and actions of the RCMP.

In this book, the author offers a critique of the motives and actions of the RCMP. The book is written in four sections: 1) Canada's Political Police at Work, 2) A Short Chronology of Political Policing, 3) RCMP: The Real Subversives -Socialists' Brief to the McDonald Commission and 4) Ottawa's Secret War on Democratic Rights.
The major section in the book is the text of the brief presented to the McDonald Commission by the Revolutionary Workers League. The RWL was founded in August 1977 through the fusion of the Revolutionary Marxist Group, the League for Socialist Ouvriere, and the Group Marxiste Revolutionnaire. The RWL hold that society needs to be reorganized on the basis of production for human needs, not for private profit and that a socialist society, based on collective ownership of the productive apparatus, economic planning, and workers control, will be qualitatively more democratic than the capitalist "democracy" known today.

The RWL believe that the purpose of the McDonald Commission is "not to expose the secret, undermocratic activities of the RCMP security service" but rather "to deflect, cover-up, and legitimatise secret police activity". Also that "the commission was set up only after the Quebec government had established the Keable inquiry" with the aim of providing a federal counterweight to the keable inquiry.

The RWL maintain that the police actions which led to the creation of the McDonald Commission "Had nothing to do with countering illegal activities like espionage, terrorism, kidnapping and the like." Rather, "The real aim of Canada's political police is to investigate, harass, and disrupt a wide range of organizations whose only 'crime' in the eyes of the Trudeau government, is that they are capable of expressing opposition to the status quo."

Throughout the brief the RWL cite cases and examples of RCMP Surveillance against various groups and organizations including themselves. They explore the meaning of "subversive" and "dissent," present the security service mandate as one with a goal of thought control and assert that the distinction between legal and illegal is disappearing.

In conclusion, the brief asserts that democratic rights are not threatened by small terrorist groupings, whatever they call themselves, nor are they threatened by mass organizations the working people form in defense of their economic and political interests. "But the democratic rights of the people of English Canada and Quebec are threatened and are being undermined, by the political police of the RCMP Security Service. And behind the Security Service stands the political authority of the Trudeau government which committed the biggest act of political terrorism in the history of Canada when it invoked the War Measures Act in 1970."

"Working people cannot rely on the government, its courts and its laws to defend their rights. The only guarantee of those rights is their collective strength and vigilance, and readiness of fight in their own defense."

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