The Conservatives aren't happy about it, but Omar Khadr has come home. They have done everything in their power to avoid this outcome. John Ibbitson writes this morning:
Not only did the Harper government continue its predecessors’ policy of not assisting Mr. Khadr’s efforts to return to Canada, they made it abundantly clear that he could languish in Guantanamo for the rest of his life, as far as they were concerned.
For the Harperites, when it comes to crime and punishment, there is no such thing as extenuating circumstances. Justice is delivered from on high; and sentences are completely absolute. The problem is that the Khadr case is loaded with extenuating circumstances. Mr. Khadr is an example of precisely what is wrong with Harperite crime and punishment.
Ibbitson believes that the next six years will be full of controversy:
From now until he completes his sentence in 2018, Mr. Khadr will be in the news. There will, doubtless, be incidents in prison. There will be parole applications. There will be petitions for his release. Both the left and the right will demand that justice, as each side perceives justice, be done.
We shall see. Khadr might spend the next six years quietly. There will be controversy when his sentence is up. But by then -- perhaps -- Mr. Harper's time will be up.