It is crystal clear that the RCMP lied when it said all along that it had no specific evidence of an impending attack on Air India. It had lots of specific evidence but apparently did not act upon it. I can imagine that families of the victims will be fit to be tied. As usual no one in the RCMP will be held accountable just as was the case with their misdeeds in the Arar case and no doubt the same thing will happen after the Iacobucci inquiry. The latter inquiry seems to be carrying on in secret without any news of what is going on.
I warned RCMP days before Air India disaster: Bartleman
Last Updated: Thursday, May 3, 2007 | 8:16 PM ET
Ontario Lt.-Gov. James Bartleman says he was scolded by an RCMP officer several days before the Air India disaster when he showed him a document suggesting a flight would be targeted on the weekend of the attack.
Ontario Lt.-Gov. James Bartleman, at the Air India inquiry Thursday, was in charge of the intelligence analysis and security branch of the Department of External Affairs when Air India Flight 182 blew up in 1985.
(Canadian Press) Bartleman was in charge of the intelligence analysis and security branch of the Department of External Affairs when the plane blew up on June 23, 1985, killing all 329 people on board.
In testimony Thursday at the inquiry into the bombing in Ottawa, Bartleman said he found the document in his daily package of intelligence briefings in the week of June 18.
"I saw in there a document that indicated Air India was being targeted that weekend — specifically the weekend of the 22-23," said Bartleman.
"It was raw, unevaluated information. There had been so many alarms raised over the previous year about potential attacks … that I suppose it would be possible for someone to say this is just another one of these cry wolf events."
Bartleman said he personally delivered the document to a committee meeting on Sikh extremism that was going on at the same time.
When he showed the document to the senior RCMP officer at the meeting, Bartleman said he was "startled" by the reaction he got.
"He flushed and told me that of course he'd seen it, and that he didn't need me to tell him how to do his job," he said.
"That confirmed that he had seen it and that the RCMP would take that into consideration and do what was necessary. The next thing … in my memory is the downing of the aircraft."
When asked why he recalled that incident so clearly, Bartleman said he had never been "hissed at" in such a way during his career and that it made a "searing impression."
"I know what I saw and I know what happened," Bartleman said.
Bartleman said he didn't reveal the information until the inquiry was established because he assumed the matter was investigated during one of the internal reviews by the RCMP.
Family lawyer finds testimony 'astounding'
Jacques Shore, one of the lawyers for the families of the Air India victims, called the testimony "astounding." He congratulated Bartleman on his decision to go public, even if it was belated.
"I think the lieutenant-governor being here today demonstrated his courage," Shore said. "(He) recognized there was something that was left undone, in his mind, and that this was a part of the story that needed to be told."
Also testifying Thursday was former CSIS officer Lynn Jarrett, who tracked two men who would later be implicated in the attack — Talwinder Singh Parmar and Inderjit Singh Reyat.
Three weeks before the Air India bombing, she and another CSIS officer followed two men into the woods on Vancouver Island and heard a loud noise.
"There was an extremely loud bang," Jarrett testified. The officers thought it might be the men undergoing firearm training.
After the Air India bombing, the officers returned to the woods and found evidence that the noise had actually been an explosives test.
Parmar, the suspected mastermind of the Air India bombing, was arrested in November 1985 on weapons, explosives and conspiracy charges, but the charges were dropped for lack of evidence. He died in India in 1992 in what officials said was a shootout with police.
Reyat, a bomb maker, was imprisoned for manslaughter in a 2003 plea bargain.