"[A] lot of people in Canada, and I suspect a lot of people in the northern part of the United States, are wondering why, why tamper with something that has clearly worked so well for so many years?
Then, when the Secretary defends the initiative by saying that "to the extent that terrorists have come into our country or suspected or known terrorists have entered our country across a border, it's been across the Canadian border," the journalist leads her into an error:
NM: Are you talking about the 9/11 perpetrators?
JN: Not just those but others as well. So again, every country is entitled to have a border. It's part of sovereignty. It's part of knowing who's in the country.
Having set her up, the journalist pounces:
NM: You know you mention terrorism, and there have been a lot of prominent American officials, including Secretary of State [Hillary] Clinton when she was a senator and a number of other congressmen and senators, that have said that there has to be tighter security because a lot of the 9/11 perpetrators came in through Canada.
The fact, of course, is that they didn't. They all came directly into the States, sometimes with U.S. visas. Senator [Charles] Schumer cited terrorists crossing at Buffalo, and then had to concede that that hadn't happened. I think there's kind of a popular misconception in this country that Canadians have been battling for a long time that we're somehow a nest of terrorism. But in reality it's not the case. And why is that view so common here?
Arguably, the Secretary should have known where all of the 19 came from, but that is history, and she's got a lot to worry about in the present. I don't see any sign that she actually believed the hijackers came from Canada or that this impression was driving policy. What's driving policy is the other terrorist threats that she cites. It looks to me as though she was simply going along with what seemed to be the journalist's statement of fact.
But if the journalist wanted to know why Americans worry about Canadians' commitment to the fight against terrorism, he provides it himself by grousing that the US hasn't taken Maher Arar off our no-fly list, making the dubious claim that Arar was found "not guilty" by a Canadian judge. When the Secretary says that Arar's case was reviewed and we concluded that his status shouldn't change, he insists on treating this as hostility to Canada: "So Canada was wrong."
That's it. On terrorism policy, the Canadian media's two main concerns are getting the US to defer border security measures and getting us to take Arar off our no-fly list.