About – Mark Vandermaas

Mark Vandermaas
info@caledoniavictimsproject.ca
519.457.0709

Mark Vandermaas

Mark Vandermaas feels a strong sense of duty to speak out against what he perceives as racially-based policing and threats to the Canadian rule of law in Caledonia. He is a former member of the Canadian Forces who has served with a United Nations peacekeeping force in the Middle East where he personally saw the remnants of war. His parents suffered under Nazi occupation in Holland and watched Jews taken away to be murdered. His father escaped from a Nazi work camp.

At the time the Caledonia crisis erupted he was living in London, Ontario – equidistant between Ipperwash to the west and Caledonia to the east; two communities ripped apart by landclaim lawlessness. Although those opposed to his efforts to expose and oppose the racial policing practices that victimized Caledonia have accused him of being an ‘outsider’ Mark was born in nearby Hamilton, lived in a Brantford orphanage to the immediate west of Six Nations, grew up in Grimsby and, during his later real estate career with RE/MAX in the Hamilton area, sold homes in Cayuga, Hagersville and Caledonia – communities which would one day all be victimized by illegal occupations, extortion, intimidation and mischief beginning with Caledonia in 2006.

After his arrest on Dec 16/06 with CANACE Executive Director Gary McHale while attempting to raise a Canadian flag in Caledonia – an incident detailed in Christie Blatchford’s landmark 2010 book, HELPLESS: Caledonia’s Nightmare of Fear and Anarchy, And How The Law The 'HelplessByBlatchford' project Failed All of Us (see National Post excerpt #2), Mark put his real estate career and award-winning online real estate college concept on hold to become a full time, volunteer ‘rule of law’ activist working to bring a permanent end to race-based policing in Ontario.

Mark has consistently spoken out on behalf of aboriginal victims of OPP racial policing practices in both Caledonia and Ipperwash as well as for the non-aboriginal residents who represented the majority of victims. 

  1. As recorded in Helpless, Mark was one of the original co-founders of Canadian Advocates for Charter Equality (www.CANACE.ca) along with Gary McHale; Merlyn Kinrade; Jeff Parkinson and Ipperwash community leader Mary-Lou LaPratte.
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  2. Click on image to discover why the Caledonia Victims Project logo contains the image of a dancer.Founder of Caledonia Victims Project, Feb. 2010 after leaving CANACE to focus on victim documentation; research; education; and policy development. Mark maintains a close working relationship with CANACE and continues to subscribe to the CANACE principles respecting the protection of human rights and the rule of law.
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  3. Co-founder of HelplessByBlatchford project (with Gary McHale), the long term goal of which is to use Christie Blatchford’s 2010 book, Helpless: Caledonia’s Nightmare of Fear And Anarchy, And How The Law Failed All of Us as an education tool to help Canadians understand the meaning and role of the ‘rule of law’ principle in maintaining Canada as a peaceful refuge with strong civil liberties for all.
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  4. Editor of VoiceofCanada.ca and past editor of CANACE.ca. Authored over 430 articles on VoiceofCanada documenting the struggle to end race-based policing in Caledonia, Ipperwash, Brantford, & Deseronto etc. with over 420,000 pages viewed to date (as of Feb 21/11).
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    Listed as a news source for coverage of the Caledonia, Six Nations land dispute on the Yahoo! CANADA News ‘In Depth – First Nations’ feature until the feature was removed in late 2010. 
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    Listed as an external reference in online encyclopedia, Wikipedia.org, under ‘Caledonia Land Dispute.’
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    Mark Vandermaas & Gary McHale cited by Ryerson Review of Journalism for coverage of Caledonia crisis when other media failed.Cited by Ryerson Review of Journalism (Summer 2008 edition) in Disputed Land, Failed Coverage for providing valuable information about the Caledonia crisis when other media failed to cover the issues. (See also: Ryerson Review of Journalism: McHale & Vandermaas important news sources for Caledonia dispute)
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  5. Featured with Gary McHale in CBC National News article by investigative reporter/producer John Nicol, The 2 men who are putting a police chief on trial, Feb 02/10. See also, Wikipedia.org: Julian Fantino
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  6. Invited speaker at University of Waterloo, Nov 01/07 re effects of landclaim lawlessness on Caledonia/Ipperwash residents.
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  7. MMarch 22/11: Free Thinking Film Society & International Free Press Society bring Caledonia to OttawaKeynote speaker (with Gary McHale) at ‘Caledonia: No More Nightmares‘ presentation, Library and Archives Canada, Ottawa, March 22/11. Co-sponsored by the Free Thinking Film Society and the Canadian chapter of the International Free Press Society. Presentation topics: Pt 1 – Caledonia’s Victims; Pt 2 – Caledonia Policy Issues. Other speakers: Gary McHale (Part 3 – The Smoking Gun of OPP Corruption; Part 4 – The ‘Caledonia Act’: No More Nightmares); Caledonia resident Doug Fleming (Illegal Smoke Shacks) and former Haldimand County mayor Marie Trainer (A Mayor’s Perspective).
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  8. Invited presenter for ‘2010 ‘New Directions in Aboriginal Policy’ forum, Mount Royal University, Calgary, Alberta, May 05, 2010. Presentation: Listening to Victims: A Fresh Approach to Healing and Reconciliation [PDF, 21p, 8.5MB].
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    CANACE Executive Director Gary McHale presented, The Face of Aboriginal Sovereignty versus The Rule of Law in Caledonia. This forum represented the first time that the voices of Caledonia & Ipperwash victims (aboriginal and non-aboriginal) were represented at the aboriginal policy discussion table.

    2010 New Directions in Aboriginal Policy forum Mount Royal University, Calgary, May 05/10: Mark Vandermaas presentationOther participants: David Newhouse (Trent University), Don Sandberg (Frontier Centre for Public Policy); Tom Flanagan (University of Calgary); Wes Elliott (Six Nations); Andrew Hodgkins (University of Alberta); Joseph Quesnel (Frontier Centre for Public Policy); Ron Bourgeault (University of Regina); Joseph Lane (Independent Researcher, Australia); and Frances Widdowson (Mount Royal University) and Albert Howard (Independent Researcher), authors of Donner Book Prize Finalist, Disrobing the Aboriginal Industry.
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  9. The Ipperwash Papers ProjectProject leader for Ipperwash Papers project documenting suppression of evidence by Ipperwash Inquiry of crimes committed against innocent residents by native extremists, and the misuse of its recommendations to defend OPP policing policies in Caledonia: 
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    Co-author: McGuinty’s Ipperwash Cover-up: the Caledonia Legacy [PDF, 10p], first published as two-part series by Caledonia-based Regional News, Feb 18-25/09. See also: www.ipperwashpapers.ca.  See also VoiceofCanada feature: The Ipperwash Papers.
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    Lead presenter at Ipperwash Papers news conference, Queen’s Park Media Studio, March 14/07.
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    Mark Vandermaas quoted in Ipperwash Inquiry expose' by Western Standard magazine.Interviewed and quoted by Western Standard magazine for July 02/07 feature story on the failures of the Ipperwash Inquiry: Protection Racket: An Ontario judge glosses over illegal aboriginal acts at Ipperwash.
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    On Nov 13/10 legendary journalist Peter Worthington, co-founder of the Toronto Sun, became the first Ontario journalist outside Caledonia to write about the Ipperwash Papers project in Caledonia crisis of facts.  
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    The Ipperwash Papers project has been used for research by reporters and as a learning resource for history students at the university level..
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  10. CANACE report, Dec 2007: The Human Costs of Illegal Occupations, 101pCo-author: CANACE report, Dec 2007: The Human Costs of Illegal Occupations [PDF, 101p].
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  11. Co-author: CANACE report, May 2008: Legalized MYTHS of Illegal Occupations [PDF, 56p].
    This report has been used as a learning resource for history students at the university level.
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  12. Co-author: Tekawennake News (Six Nations) op-ed series, Healing Two Communities, July 14-21/10:.

  13. Speaker at ‘Truth & Reconciliation’ news conference, Queen’s Park Media Studio, Feb 23/11.
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  14. Speaker at ‘FantinoGate‘ news conference in Queen’s Park Media Studio, April 17/07 re complaints against OPP Commissioner Fantino.
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  15. CANACE report, May 2008: Legalized Myths of Illegal OccupationsCo-organizer and speaker at various peaceful protest events, public townhall meetings and legal education workshops in Caledonia and Cayuga, Ontario, including the May 07/08 ‘Legalized MYTHS of Illegal Occupations’ presentation: Video links
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  16. Addressed Caledonia Rotary Club, July 29/08 with Caledonia resident Merlyn Kinrade.
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  17. Interviewed by various radio and print media outlets covering Caledonia crisis, including the ‘Just Right’ Show, CHRW 94.9FM at University of Western Ontario, Dec 09/10 [LINK] along with Gary McHale.
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  18. Campaign manager for CANACE co-founder/Executive Director Gary McHale who received 4,821 votes in 2008 federal election in riding of Haldimand-Norfolk as independent candidate running primarily on ‘law and order’ platform highlighting suffering of innocent Caledonia residents. Created and maintained the official campaign website: http://www.garymchale.ca/
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  19. July 12, 2009: the Canadian flag becomes legal again in Caledonia after 4 arrests, 31 month campaign. Click image for story, photos, video.Presenter of ‘Reconciliation: the CANACE Path’ to City of Brantford Public Forum Committee, Sept 29/08.
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  20. One of four people arrested in Caledonia (see also, National Post Helpless excerpt #2 on this page) by OPP for attempting to place a Canadian flag on a public utility pole across the street from the occupied Douglas Creek Estates to protest against racial policing. Arrested on Dec 16/06 with Gary McHale who was held in jail overnight without charge. The arrests launched a 31 month campaign to defend the right of non-native Canadians to raise Canadian flags in Caledonia which ended in success on July 12, 2009.
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  21. 'Caught in the Middle,' by Barb Patterson-TuckOne of three CANACE co-founders portrayed in artist Barb Patterson-Tuck’s award-winning 2008 depiction of the Caledonia crisis entitled, ‘Caught in the Middle‘ which won first prize in the 2008 Caledonia fair.
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    Mark is shown with his blue United Nations beret on the right side of the maple leaf in the centre – worn during a Jan 20/07 Caledonia flag-raising protest which is also recorded in Helpless.
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  22. Creator of Caledonia information video, ‘March for Freedom: The Struggle to Restore Equal Justice in Ontario, Canada, October 2006.
    .Mark Vandermaas (3rd from R) on parade with Canadian Contingent United Nations Emergency Force Middle East, UNEF II, Ismalia, Egypt, 1978.
  23. Served as United Nations peacekeeper with Canadian Contingent, UNEF II, Egypt, March-Sept 1978 (Mark is 3rd from right in photo, right. Click to enlarge).
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  24. Basic Universal Mediation certificate, studied under Franklin Corner, Q.C., C.Med
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  25. Former licenced Real Estate Broker, Province of Ontario.
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  26. First prize winner of 1999 McMaster University Business Plan Competition for online real estate education concept. .
     
  27. Level II (Secret) security clearance, expiry Feb 11/13.
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  28. Mark’s speeches/presentations/writings of note include:

Why Caledonia?

In 2008 Mark was asked by a Caledonia resident to explain why ‘outsiders’ like him would risk their financial security to work full time on behalf of people they didn’t know:

“I went to the Middle East with the Canadian Forces on a UN mission to preserve peace between Egypt and Israel; how could I refuse to go to Caledonia to defend justice for children on the 6th Line who live without policing? How can I dishonour my military brothers and sisters by putting a big screen TV ahead of the rule of law and fundamental justice here in Ontario while they face suicide and roadside bombs half a world away?

“85 Canadian soldiers have come home from Afghanistan in boxes; thousands more are buried overseas – all killed while trying to defend people they didn’t know. Many more have been maimed or scarred. The price we have paid to restore justice in Ontario is nothing by comparison.

“I live in London, equidistant between two communities ripped apart by landclaim lawlessness – Ipperwash, 1.5 hrs to the west, and Caledonia, 1.5 hours to the east. I am not an outsider; I am, in fact, very much an ‘insider.’ All Ontarians, all Canadians are ‘insiders’ when it comes to fundamental human rights and preserving the rule of law.

“My parents lived in Holland during WWII and saw Jews taken away. My father escaped from a German work camp. He later fought with the Dutch Army in Indonesia. I grew up learning about the Holocaust, coming to understand that enforcing laws based on race is inherently evil and dangerous. It was not the stormtroopers that made the death camps possible – it was the dutiful acquiesence to the hateful Nuremberg race laws by bureaucrats, police officers and judges who were ‘just following orders’ that made it possible to eventually murder millions of human beings. And, let’s not forget that it was Canadian, British, Russian and American troops – outsiders all – who liberated the death camps.

“I don’t want to lose my house any more than the next person, but what scares me more is standing idly by as my country loses its soul to criminals and appeasers, and knowing I didn’t do everything in my power to stop it. It is not my right to go to Caledonia, it is my duty, and the duty of every Canadian who understands the awful consequences to a country of losing the rule of law and the belief that all human beings are equal.”

  • VoiceofCanada feature: About

Last Update: April 15/11

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