Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Obama's Gift To Canada: More Casualties

OBAMA'S SURGE WILL ALSO REORGANIZE TROOP DEPLOYMENTS around the country. As has been stated ad infinitum, NATO and the US are abandoning the countryside to focus on securing the population centres in Afghanistan. (Somebody ought to tell them that the Taliban are based in the countryside.)
But it will mean that, for Canadian soldiers, they will no longer be expected to hide out in impenetrable bunkers at Kandahar airfield. They are to be deployed as a security barrier along the south edge of Kanadahar city bringing them into direct contact with Afghans - and insurgents.
Those activities include getting the troops out of fortified compounds and into platoon houses – lightly strengthened residences in town centres that encourage the troops to mingle with the population they're intended to protect. At the same time, the new strategy will leave Canadian troops more vulnerable to attack.
While this is unlikely to result in much progress in stopping the Taliban - as articles by Thom Walkom and Robert Fisk detail, this strategy has been tried before and failed - it will increase the casualties. Forget waiting until 2011, Canada should pull its troops out now before the real shooting war starts around Kandahar and a lot of people end up dead.
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