Tuesday, April 03, 2007


What a joke. Public Safety Minister Stockwell Day and Treasury Board President Vic Toews on a junket to Kandahar. They are making the trip to provide assistance to the Afghan police.

Kandahar is well known for many reasons . For instance, it is a City that for a couple of hundred years at least has been known to be one of the most lawless on earth. For countless generations it has also been known to have among its residents more religious fanatics per capita than almost anywhere in the world.

The Afghan police force in Kandahar and elsewhere in Afghanistan is known to be ridden with corruption. Murder, rape, torture, pillage and bribery is its idea of law enforcement, not to mention looking the other way respecting poppy production which supplies heroin to the world. Many argue that it is the disgrace of the Afghani police that gives strength to the Taliban. Even the Pentagon and U.S. State Department have acknowledged this sorry state of affairs.

So what are Day and Toews doing in Kandahar. Don't laugh. They are there to spearhead a Canadian Government initiative to help train the Afghan police in such areas as weapons training, searching of suspects and vehicles at checkpoints, and how to respond to roadside bombs. Surely the Afghani police, coming from a country that by and large has been perpetually at war, have nothing to learn from the Canadians about those subjects. Unless it is to learn about the application of a Charter of Rights - which I am sure neither Day nor Toews had in mind.

To assist the Afghanis, Canada is providing 36 Canadian civilian police officers. In addition, Canada will pay for 2500 uniforms and other police equipment, help pay police salaries, and assist in the building and renovation of police stations as well as prisons.

Day, with his usual vacuity, stated that '. . . our police are playing an important role in promoting Canadian values such as the rule of law and human rights, and will help to bring stability and peace to Afghanistan." Fat chance.

Canada has an impossible job in Afghanistan. The west has not put its money where its mouth is. Their meager NATO troop levels in the country together with a reluctance of most of the contributing nations to get involved in the real hot spots of the country will doom the whole exercise to failure. The Russians couldn't control the country with 3 or 4 times the troop levels provided by the NATO forces. The Afghani Government is getting weaker by the day. According to all reliable sources, the Taliban is getting stronger. Its a helluva mess.

Just maybe, that is the reason why Day and Toews made the trip. Get some phony mileage out of a photo-op while you can, and keep bamboozling the public that our contribution actually has a chance of success. Until the election is held. After the election, they can deal with the fallout. Until then, milk it for all its worth.

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