Sunday, June 19, 2011

CANADA: Thousands to Jail?

Further to yesterday's post, Tim Buck, Too, below is an article from Time magazine in 1931 celebrating the conviction of Communist Party leaders and Canadian media editors hailing the repression of dissent - NYC.

Time Magazine
Monday, Nov. 23, 1931

Tim Buck, Tom Ewen, John Boychuck, Amos Hill, Malcolm Bruce. Sam Cohen, Matthew Popovitch and Thomas Cacic were convicted by a Toronto jury last week of "being members of an unlawful association, and being partners in a seditious conspiracy."

Canadian editors hailed the Government's successful prosecution of this case as "the first definite action launched against the Communist Party as an organization on the American continent." They declared: "The only comparable action is that of the Japanese Govern-ment against the Communist Party there."

In imposing sentence on the convicted Communists ("all common working men"), Mr. Justice Wright declared: "The Communist Party itself has been on trial as much as these eight men." All except Thomas Cacic, who got off with two years in jail, will serve five years, will then face deportation. All property of the Communist Party in Ontario, the Court decreed, shall be confiscated. Said Tim Buck, leader of the eight: "What I did I did for the working class. I worked hard for the Party, believing I was right."

Prosecutor Norman Sommerville said that between 4,000 and 5,000 Canadians can now be arrested as Communists. Juries in all provinces of the Dominion can be asked to follow Ontario in deciding that membership in the Communist Party is per se a crime in Canada—which it is not in the U. S., Great Britain, France, Germany, et al. Facing the legal prospect of filling Ontario's jails, with Reds, Prosecutor Sommerville planned to do still more.

"It is not a question of whether a man is a member of the party right now." he said. "If he has been a member between 1921 and 1931 he is still liable to conviction."

For Hearstpapers, the hero of the trial, Sergeant John Leopold* of the Canadian Mounted Police (TIME, Nov. 16), signed a piece beginning: "This is the story of my betrayal to the Communist organization, and my exile to the Yukon, the Canadian Siberia. . . . Life there is one of continual hardship, fighting against blizzards and ice on unmarked trails, with nothing but the urge of duty, the code of the Mounted to carry a man through."

All Canada now knows how Sergeant Leopold took the alias "E. W. Esselwein" in line of duty, was an active member of the Communist Party for seven years, finally exposed its leaders to the State. But something new was Sergeant Leopold's revelation of how he was exposed to the Communists before making his own great exposure.

His dramatic appearance, when he was finally recalled to Toronto to give the evidence that convicted eight men last week, Sergeant Leopold described thus:

"In front of me were my old comrades —Tim Buck, chief Communist organizer of Canada; Malcolm Bruce, whose house I had painted in those far-off days; Tom Ewen, special organizer in industrial disputes; Amos Hill; John Boychuck—all facing a possible sentence . . . for unlawful conspiracy and sedition.

"I stood there in the box dressed in the scarlet and gold dress uniform of my service, my true colors as Sergeant Leopold. R.C.M.P.

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