Skip to main content

The War Measures Act (Human Rights)

Kellock-Taschereau Royal Commission of Inquiry

  • The intel from Igor Gouzenko regarding the Soviet spy operations was withheld from the public and from Prime Minister King's cabinet until February 1946.
  • Shortly afterwards, Prime Minister King appointed two Supreme Court justices to lead the Kellock-Taschereau Royal Commission of Inquiry, which is formally known as the Royal Commission to Investigate the Facts Relating to and the Circumstances Surrounding the Communication, by Public Officials and Other Persons i

The Gouzenko Affair

  • The Gouzenko Affair was a significant event of both Canadian and international importance and which had major implications at the onset of the Cold War and sparked discussion around the use of government powers and civil liberties.
  • On September 5, 1945, a Soviet Defector named Igor Gouzenko, who was working as in the cipher section at the Soviet Embassy in Ottawa, walked out of the embassy carrying over 100 documents revealing the existence and extent of Soviet es

The October Crisis

  • The October Crisis refers to events that took place in the Fall of 1970 and the series of terrorist acts committed by the Front de libération du Québec (FLQ) who was a Quebec independence militant group/movement.
  • The October Crisis was one of the only instances where the War Measures Act was implemented during peacetime and was invoked by former Prime Minister of Canada Pierre Trudeau.

The War Measures Act

  • The War Measures Act was a federal law enacted by Canadian Parliament in August 1914 in the beginning of the First World War, which gave the Government of Canada extra powers during times of "war, invasion, and insurrection, real or apprehended [feared]."
  • The Act transferred powe