Yesterday the Canadian flag was lowered in Afghanistan for the last time, signalling the highly ambiguous termination of a long and ill-starred mission.

Given the huge human and financial costs incurred over the past 12 years, Canadian politicians, opinion leaders and senior officials should have a lot of explaining to do.

By any reasonable measure, they should be pressed.  Instead, and very much in the tradition of the entire episode, the occasion is passing with barely a shrug.

From the perspective of public accountability, this is unfortunate. The corrosion of Canadian governance has been deep and pervasive.

Following are a few articles in which I try to set out some essential considerations. In my view,  the issues raised deserve much closer consideration than they have been accorded to date:

Bottom line?

If war crimes regarding the handling of detainees were commited without adequate investigation, and if negligence and incompetence at the highest levels have been allowed to prevail, then we have only ourselves to blame.

Under more progressive and just political circumstances, this outcome would not be tolerated.


Daryl Copeland is a Senior Fellow at the Canadian Defence and Foreign Affairs Institute (CDFAI) and the creator of Guerrilla Diplomacy.

Featured Photo from ISAF Media

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