"Balance of Probabilities"

Letters | Toronto Sunday Sun | May 06, 2001

BRAVO TO Peter Worthington for his column "Ukrainian teens were Nazi victims" (Toronto Sunday Sun, April 29, 2001), where he places the question of the denaturalization and deportation of Wasyl Odynsky and Helmut Oberlander in its proper perspective. It is absurd that their citizenship is threatened, not because of participation in war crimes or atrocities, but because of multiple subjective "balance of probabilities" decisions concerning the immigration process 50 years after the fact.

Will Zuzak

(The facts don't get any clearer 50 years later)

[W.Z. The original unedited version of this letter is appended below.]

April 29, 2001
Toronto Sun
editor@sunpub.com

Balance of Probabilities

Dear Editor:

Bravo to Peter Worthington for his letter “Ukrainian teens were Nazi victims” [Toronto Sun, April 29, 2001], where he places the question of the denaturalization and deportation of Wasyl Odynsky and Helmut Oberlander in its proper perspective.

It is absurd that their citizenship is threatened, not because of participation in war crimes or atrocities, but because of multiple subjective “balance of probabilities” decisions concerning the immigration process 50 years after the fact.

For example, to quote directly from section [187] of Judge Andrew MacKay’s judgment,

“Yet I have found that on a balance of probabilities he was interviewed by a security screening officer and again, on a balance of probabilities, that he would have been questioned about those. If his wartime activities had been disclosed, on a balance of probabilities, I find that his application would have been rejected …”,
we note that three separate balance-of-probabilities are utilized. Presumably, each probability would be assigned a value slightly greater than 50%, such that their multiplication would bring the overall probability down to about 13%.

Furthermore, the above scenario does not include the utilization of an interpreter, which would further decrease the overall probability that Wasyl Odynsky and Helmut Oberlander deliberately misled Canadian immigration authorities.

Sincerely,
Will Zuzak
Edmonton, AB