Monday, November 15, 2010

Why is Harper afraid of a parliamentary debate on Afghanistan?

Because there's obviously something he's not telling you and a debate would require someone to answer some very embarrassing questions.

If Harper is so confident that he has the Liberals on side, he should have nothing to worry about. Right?

Maybe not.

A debate would shed some light on the fact that Elmer MacKay's little boy, Pete, the adrift (recently) Minister of National Defence, seems to be playing catch up on the file that should be papering his desk. MacKay seems to know nothing until that detestable little slime-ball from the PMO, Dimitri Soudas, speaks.

It would certainly appear that defence policy is coming from some desk in the Prime Minister's office - not from 101 Colonel By Drive.

There has to be more, however, because Harper's insistence that he doesn't need the approval of Parliament is not only contemptuous but obviously so. While Harper is running a wildly incompetent government this plan for a new mission in Afghanistan looks like it's been on the stovetop for a while. And that is what Harper doesn't want to have to answer.

While you misled Canadians, how long have you had this plan in place? (I'm saying last April, and I have a very good reason for that.)

Then there is the concept of "classroom" instructors being the advertised form of mission. So far, anyone I've spoken to has burst out in laughter at the idea. For one thing, the troops we send don't actually do the instruction. They monitor the Afghan instructors. (Unless we've suddenly developed a huge number of Pashtu and Dari speakers). Those who do actually lead instructional sessions are doing so through interpreters.  Ever done that? It's very difficult, even with enthusiastic, well-educated students.That means we have to send instructors and instructor supervisors who are adept and extremely well organized. What's the impact on Canadian Forces schools and the specialist training in the Canadian Forces?

Here's an obvious question that just doesn't seem to get asked: If we're going to deploy a pure training element to Afghanistan to assist in the advanced training of specialists and leaders, why don't we just bring them to Canada and train them here at our own bases, develop their instructor cadre in complete safety and save billions of dollars not having to support Canadian troops at distant overseas posts?

Ask that question in a parliamentary debate and Harper or one of his hillbilly crowd will have to explain why they don't see that as a good idea... and I can tell you it would not make them look pretty.

Why doesn't Harper want the support of parliament via debate? Because at the very least his misleading of the Canadian public will be an open sore which will get a lot of attention.



Alison said...

What a brilliant suggestion re bringing the Afghans here. Michael are you listening?

Cathie from Canada said...

You are right, Dave, there's something wrong with this whole thing -- the "announcement" when Harper was out of the country, having Bob Rae setting Liberal policy on this, no apparent Defense Minister or armed forces involvement, its all weird.

Beijing York said...

Another question I would like to see asked and answered, is how many of the 1,000 "trainers" will include newly recruited enlisted and enlisted who have only served in the last five years. The CF members who actually train our troops are usually officers with long track records. I don't see them being the "trainers" the CF sends to Afghanistan.

Informed Despite Education said...

What I would like to know is why anyone bothers to tell us we live in a democracy? It is becoming more and more apparent as the years go by that we live in an oligarchy, but still our leaders hide behind this democratic mask. Ok maybe I am going a bit overboard, but I am getting tired of the blatant dictatorial remarks comming out of the PMO and PM's mouth. I am not even sure he is scared of open debate, just contemptuous of the needless (in his mind) process, because lets get real, those who would be outraged are, and those who are placent will remain so.

Boris said...

Amir Attaran:

Backed up by Deputy to the Commander, NATO Training Mission - Afghanistan,

LK said...

He's not afraid. He's a an Oligarch who doesn't give a damn. Look - there's a shiny thing the media loves. Royalty. And what Informed Despite Education said.

Alison said...

Afghan fighters are being trained in Australia with the Oz special forces.

Ditto what IDE said.

The Mound of Sound said...

Two simple questions would put an end to this debate. 1. How many soldiers have Western Forces trained to date for the Afghan National Army? 2. Of those, how many remain in the Afghan National Army?

The top commanding U.S. general in A'stan recently put the desertion rate at 23%. Others contend that figure is low. A decade worth of 23% annual desertion comes out to almost two and a half times the total strength of the Afghan National Army.

Training replacements for deserters is a futile, mug's game. Apparently some unit commanders don't even report their deserters so they can pocket the absentees' pay.

LK said...

MoS - "Training replacements for deserters is a futile mug's game." A total CON. Grifters. But that's where the money's at so there they all are...LK