By Tom Flanagan and Brian Giesbrecht
Did church leaders, the federal government, and the RCMP really conspire to keep 50 deaths hidden by destroying the documentary proof, and to prevent any investigation from happening?
The only way to know if graves actually exist is by excavation.
GIVEN THE RECENT announcement of unmarked graves at Williams Lake, B.C. it is imperative that the RCMP step in and secure the potential crime scene and conduct a thorough investigation that includes excavation. Canada is either a country that has committed unspeakable crimes, or a gigantic fraud is being perpetrated. The country is suffering, and has a right to know.
The basic claim is this: Possible gravesites have been found at Williams Lake about two kilometres from the former site of the St. Joseph’s Mission Residential School. The only way to determine if graves actually exist is by excavation.
Williams Lake First Nations Chief Willie Sellars made the emotional announcement on January 25, 2020. He alleged that murder, rape and other heinous crimes — including priests throwing babies into incinerators — were committed at the school, and that the graves contain the bodies of the child homicide victims. But the allegations get even worse. It is alleged that church leaders, the federal government, and the RCMP conspired to keep the deaths hidden by destroying documents that proved the deaths, and prevented any investigation from happening.
The allegations could not be more serious. RCMP procedure is quite clear when a death and secret burial is alleged. They immediately secure the area and begin their investigation. Excavation is the obvious step that must be taken to determine if there are any graves that cannot be explained. If there are, then exhumation and forensic examination must be considered. If no suspicious graves are found, the investigation ends. The first step is obviously for the RCMP to immediately become involved and secure the area.
THE OTHER THING that must be done immediately is to release to the public Whitney Spears’ report. Other anthropologists must be able to examine the report. There is, quite simply, no reason why the report should not be released. Shocking allegations have been made, and the public deserves to see the evidence.
If there were 50 children who were somehow murdered or otherwise “disappeared” at the school, one would expect there to be 50 sets of frantic parents who would have made police reports, and complained in public that their children had gone missing. But we have searched news archives and other sources and found no such missing persons reports, or anything at all to indicate that 50 children disappeared.
The allegations at Williams Lake, if proven, will be the single biggest crime that has ever been committed in Canada. If the allegations are shown to be false, with no crimes committed, this will be the biggest wild goose chase in the country’s history.
A precedent must be set here. Crimes alleged to have been committed on Canadian soil must be investigated in the proper way by the proper authorities. The allegation is murder and mayhem. The principles of justice demand that the potential crime scene be secured, not left in the control of those alleging the crime.
SCEPTICISM IS FURTHER warranted because allegations of priests and nuns killing babies in horrible ways have a long history in North America. The most famous example is The Awful Disclosures of Maria Monk, which caused a sensation when published in 1836. Maria, a young woman from Montreal, claimed that she had lived in a convent where nuns were forced to have sex with priests and the resulting babies were strangled and thrown into a lime pit.
Maria’s book was widely read, but it was soon shown to be a hoax because basic facts in her story didn’t add up. Nonetheless, such charges against Catholic nuns and priests have circulated ever since in the netherworld of public consciousness. They are reminiscent of the blood libel, according to which Jewish elders kidnap and kill Christian babies. The blood libel still feeds anti-Semitism in some parts of the world.
The immediate source of these anti-Catholic stories given currency in Kamloops and now in Williams Lake is unclear. A book by former United Church minister Kevin Annett, Murder by Decree: The Crime of Genocide in Canada, may have something to do with it; Annett is known to have had contacts with First Nations people in Kamloops.
But knowing the immediate source of the stories is less important than understanding that they are ancient, vicious libels with a high potential for causing violence, as in the torching or vandalizing of 68 churches in Canada last summer. These libels are so dangerous that reasonable people ought to demand some tangible proof before repeating them, as our mass media are unfortunately doing.
Tom Flanagan is Professor Emeritus of Political Science at the University of Calgary. Brian Giesbrecht is a retired judge of the Manitoba Provincial Court. This column is exclusive to THE DORCHESTER REVIEW.