Old Habits Die Hard – the dubious adventures of Grant Bristow, or how CSIS taught me everything I know about phone hacking
Posted by E on November 17, 2011
I’ve just recently been informed of a 2010 scandal involving ex-CSIS superstar Grant Bristow, who everyone these days knows better as Nathan Black. The story is convoluted and pathetic, and involves
Grant Nathan pretending to be a phony reporter in order to conduct some mock aggressive interviews with Edmonton mayor Stephen Mendel. In other words, a déjà vu throwback to Bristow’s good old times – a dirty tricks campaign (in this case, against a Jewish person). Of course, the prank went terribly wrong since nobody quite “got” Bristow’s sense of humour and he was subsequently hit with a libel charge. Anyway, you can read more of the tawdry affair here.
Reflecting back on my own personal encounters with Grant Bristow, it now dawns on me how wrong I was about him. How that poor man must have suffered. After I provided information on the Heritage Front, my life in hiding was absolutely nothing in comparison to the suffering Grant must have endured: the abrupt cessation of those few things that gave his life such joy and meaning – telephoning people under the guise of interviewing them, donning alternate personas only to mock and scare those on the other line. Breaking into answering machines to lift information that he would pass out to Heritage Front skinheads. Oh, how he’d miss his perennial favourites – putting skinheads up to crank call individuals on his target list, individuals who would end up being followed, harassed and terrorized 24 hours a day.
Today’s media have only half the story right: yes, Grant Bristow undoubtedly did his duty as agent provocateur extraordinaire to build up a racist empire in Canada. The part where the Bristow myth falls apart is in the fact that, no matter which way you spin things, Grant Bristow did NOT take down the Heritage Front.
That task befell a number of tireless activists, a sleuthing journalist for the Toronto Sun, Bill Dunphy, and as a result of the brave actions of a House of Commons staff member, Brian McInnis, who leaked an internal report to the Attorney General which warned of possible problems involving the activities of a CSIS agent in the field.
In the several years in which Bristow moulded and partially-funded the Heritage Front and their subsequent criminal activities, NOT ONE CRIMINAL CHARGE was laid against any Canadian white supremacist as a result of his actions. But it gets even better — Bristow was even busted by Metro Police with a trunk full of smuggled guns – but the police were promptly told “from above” to let him go and not pursue the matter.
Following Bill Dunphy’s front page exposé of Bristow in the Toronto Sun, our boy was promptly plucked out of the Toronto area by his handlers and placed into the Witness Protection Program. He was given a large home in Edmonton equipped with a three-car garage and an allowance of several thousand dollars per month. I have to ask myself, For what, exactly?
Let’s first start with the definition of hero: according to Oxford Dictionary, this is “a person, especially a man, who is admired by many people for doing something brave or good.” (Uh, as in instigate terror campaigns against people because of their differing political beliefs and sexual orientation? Because that’s what Bristow did. But I’m getting ahead of myself here).
How is Bristow a hero of the people? Well, let’s go down the list:
- Did any criminal charges get laid against any HF white supremacists as a direct result of his information? No.
- Did he testify in any proceedings against any Heritage Front members? Nope.
- Did he ever supplant police with any affidavits that were ultimately used to prosecute anybody? I mean, given the hundreds of thousands (likely millions) of taxpayer dollars that went into this operation, did anything concrete come out of Grant Bristow? Or are we only left with a bunch of hate speeches on YouTube and a bad taste in our mouths? Nada. Ugh, I’m starting to see a pattern here.
- Were either himself or his handlers charged with criminal harassment over the It Campaign, over possession of illegal weapons, or instigating a riot (as in what happened in June 1993)? No again. No criminal charges were ever laid (though rumour is, the handler was either demoted or fired, though I cannot confirm this).
What makes a hero in the eyes of Canadian media? Somehow I doubt it involves such dubiously-heroic acts as teaching underage girls like myself how to break into answering machines and how to “fuck with people’s heads” until they “shit their pants and have a total breakdown.” Though that is precisely what he did.
However, such heroic acts are deemed to merit exposure in press arenas such as Walrus Magazine, or worth standing ovations from synagogue audiences who blissfully had no clue about the character of the man who they were thanking, and what they were really giving applause for.
In contrast to Bristow, I’m not as full of myself as to claim that I acted heroically. However, I can answer yes to the first 3 of the above questions.
- YES, white supremacists were charged as a result of my information. And not just anybody, but Wolfgang Droege himself and a couple of his cronies went to jail.
- YES, my testimony resulted in convictions. And if CSIS hadn’t told the OPP and RCMP to back off my affidavits in order to protect their operative, many MORE convictions might have resulted.
- YES, my information was used to weed out a KKK-attending, Heritage Front member who just happened to be a police officer and gun-totting member of the Toronto Police Services.
- NO, I wasn’t given a three-car garage mansion in the suburbs, or an allowance of $3000 a month for years and years afterwards. Hell, I wasn’t even given a change of ID.
I panhandled on the streets of Ottawa and Halifax to feed myself. I dumpster-dived for food between court appearances and lived in shelters. After I did my part to take down the Heritage Front, I had nothing, couldn’t use my ID, and was on the run for my life. I received absolutely nothing, not even protection, from this government.
But I ain’t a hero, and unlike Bristow, I wouldn’t feel comfortable making such a claim. I’m just a nobody, someone who did what they had to in order to dismantle a vicious organization and take those bastards down.
And no, I’m not only talking about the Heritage Front here.
UPDATE: For a comprehensive media library of what took place in the 1990s, please start by checking out this blog entry (Race Traitor: The Media Library) and the mainstream media articles and documentary footage listed.
Also – here is a free PDF excerpt of my book, which includes affidavit-backed details of Bristow’s criminal activity within the Heritage Front: RACE-TRAITOR Excerpt by ELISA HATEGAN
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