O Canada, you're too dangerous for Dick Cheney


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The Independent US

Peter Ustinov once called Toronto "New York run by the Swiss", meaning that Canada's largest city has everything the Big Apple does, but is just a bit cleaner, friendlier, more efficient and – well, Swiss. It might be an overstatement but, as a big metropolis, it does feel safe. But not safe enough for former US vice-president Dick Cheney, who yesterday pulled out of a talk in the city due to fears about his safety. Is he right to be scared? What are Toronto's potential dangers?


Raging hockey fans: As Vancouver Canucks fans proved last year, Canadians are great at post-big-hockey-game riots. As the Toronto Maple Leafs last reached the Stanley Cup Finals in 1967 and currently sit a dire 24th out of 30 teams in the NHL, it's unlikely to be too much of a threat in 2012.


Pollution: As Canada's largest city, Toronto suffers from air pollution, but, according to WHO stats, much less so than Cheney's old manor of Washington, DC. Maybe, as a country bird, Cheney could retreat to a lovely resort town north-east of the city. He'd surely be welcomed with open arms (not that kind) in, er, Haliburton, Ontario.


Wild-animal attack: Queen's Park, in the centre of Toronto University, has some particularly fierce-looking black squirrels. Best pack your quail gun, Dick!


Furious activists: Watch out for those flying hardback copies of The Shock Doctrine there, eh?