Canadian Intelligence Eh!

How important are human sources in counter terrorism? A conversation with former CSIS officers and agents

Canadian Intelligence Eh! – Episode 150: How far should the use of human sources go to collect intelligence?

The world of counter terrorism is a dirty business.   Intelligence services and law enforcement need to infiltrate terrorist cells to see what they are planning and part of those efforts involve the recruitment and running of human sources/agents.  What are these sources able to do to help the good guys defeat the bad guys?  In the wake of allegations that Canada’s spy agency CSIS used a human source to ‘traffick’ UK ‘schoolgirls’  into ISIS from Turkey a much needed overview of how human sources are deployed should help shed some light on this practice.  Borealis has an in-depth conversation with Al Treddenick, former CSIS officer, and Mubin Shaikh, former CSIS human source.

CSIS violated its own rules in smuggling of British teens – The Globe and Mail

About my guests

Mubin Shaikh is a former security intelligence and counter terrorism operative. He has testified as an expert for the United Nations Security Council, the United States Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs with NATO and Special Operations Command Central and he is an external expert with the Joint Staff SMA for CENTCOM Command Staff.

Podcast – Interview with former security intelligence operative Mubin Shaikh (

AL Treddenick is the President and CEO of ATNOH Group, a global Public Safety and Security consulting company based in Canada.  Prior to this position, AL was the Director of BlackBerry’s Government Relations team leading the company’s strategic relationships with law enforcement, intelligence, and security agencies around the globe.  AL retired from Canadian Government service after 32 years with the Canadian Security Intelligence Service (CSIS) and Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP).  While with CSIS, AL was a senior operations officer leading both domestic and foreign Counter Terrorism  HUMINT collection programs.

CIEh #125 – What should Canada do with Saudi Arabia? (

Canadian Intelligence Eh

In a world of multiple voices and opinions it can be very hard to know where to turn.  One choice is to look to those who actually worked in counter-terrorism in the national security world. In these half-hour podcasts, 30-year Canadian intelligence veteran Phil Gurski is joined by a fascinating array of individuals with something meaningful to say about these issues as they provide insight into what they mean and what we need to do about them.

About Phil Gurski

Phil Gurski is the President and CEO of Borealis Threat and Risk Consulting Ltd. and Distinguished Fellow in National Security at the University of Ottawa’s Professional Development Institute (PDI). He worked as a senior strategic analyst at CSIS (Canadian Security Intelligence Service) from 2001-2015, specialising in violent Islamist-inspired homegrown terrorism and radicalisation. He is the author of six books on terrorism, including the most recent The Peaceable Kingdom: A history of terrorism in Canada from Confederation to the present.

By Phil Gurski

Phil Gurski is the President and CEO of Borealis Threat and Risk Consulting Ltd. Phil is a 32-year veteran of CSE and CSIS and the author of six books on terrorism.

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