MILNEWS.ca News Highlights – January 28, 2013
- While the Americans bring women into combat roles, and Aussies talk about it, Canadian women continue to be in combat roles – more here.
- Mali (1) Commentator “….Mali’s martyrdom-obsessed Islamists no doubt hope Canada and other Western nations will send troops to join the French. Late last year, one of Fowler’s captors appeared on an Internet video boasting that the mujahedeen were ready to fight all the countries in NATO. They may yet get their wish.”
- Mali (2) DFAIT: Don’t go!
- Mali (3) Project Ploughshares: Even if the U.N. calls for action, that’s not the best solution “…. Combating terrorism, joining coalitions of the willing — in this case led by France — and even responding with troops to a UN Security Council resolution do not, in and of themselves, provide a sure rationale and guidance on where and how Canada can best make its contribution to Mali’s longer-term security. As we are still learning from Canada’s extensive military engagement in Afghanistan and its more recent but limited air support to operations in Libya, battling terrorists and autocrats under the authority of a UN Security Council resolution does not guarantee success or sustainable political stability in fragile or weak states. Neither Afghanistan nor Libya has yet achieved sustainable security; indeed, military “successes” have had significant negative repercussions for those states and their immediate neighbours. Today’s situation in Mali is at least in part a result of the blowback from the NATO-led air mission in Libya. Canadian Parliamentarians and the Canadian public now have the opportunity to reflect on recent Canadian Forces expeditionary experience and bring those insights to bear on decisions relating to Canadian engagement in Mali …. ”
- More Mali (4) More on whazzup in Mali here (Google News), here (EMM Explorer) and here (France’s defence ministry’s daily update in French)
- Egypt “Canadian embassy temporarily shut in Cairo“ – more news here and DFAIT travel advisory for Egypt here.
- Somalia DFAIT: Don’t go!
- macleans.ca: Mali, Afghanistan and Iran among hottest files for Foreign Affairs Minister in 2013?
- Analyst calls for more Canada in U.N. peacekeeping missions “…. My argument is simply that peacekeeping should represent a larger proportion of our discretionary missions than it does today. To that end, I question some of the arguments made in favour of Canada’s disengagement from peacekeeping by examining them within an updated context, since much has changed during the past decade, including in the way in which the UN approaches peacekeeping. A strong case for reengagement can now be made – and that creates the need for a reappraisal ….”
- “When the hockey rivalry between Army and Canada’s Royal Military College took a five-year hiatus, lost was the sense of tradition and annual renewal. So when the two service academies restored acquaintances last season there was hardly the same passion and understanding of the international exchange that got its start in 1923. Sure, it’s Canada versus the United States, but to the uninitiated members of both squads, it was merely another game on the schedule, joined at the hip by hype from old alumni. Army coach Brian Riley showed his players emails from graduates who played in the series and posted old news clips, but until these current Black Knights went head-to-head with the Paladins it was hard to get overly excited. Army thumped RMC 9-1 last season, a stinging setback that probably stuck in the craw of every returning Canadian cadet. So when the two teams took to the ice on Saturday night, before a packed house at Tate Rink, there was a bit more history, a bit more passion, and certainly a lot more rivalry. The exhibition did not have the 60 minutes of rugged action of previous matchups but tempers flared on occasion, checks were more forceful and the joy was still overwhelming when goals were scored. “We understand at the beginning of the game, when we are out there doing a salute to the crowd, we are on the same team,” said Army captain Cheyne Rocha, speaking of his Canadian military comrades, who may in the future fight alongside the Americans on foreign battlefields. “But for 60 minutes, it was definitely a battle, so it was fun.” ….”
- “The RCMP are planning to expand their fleet of remote-controlled “eyes in the sky,” and for the first time, they’re looking south of the border to a company that has been a major supplier of unmanned aerial vehicles for the U.S. military. Southern California-based AeroVironment Inc. builds tiny fixed-wing drones, which have been a staple of the U.S. Defense Department’s arsenal in the battlefields of Afghanistan and Iraq. But it also produces a line of four-rotor helicopters — called Qubes — that are tailor-made for use by police. Small enough to fit in the trunk of a car and controlled using touch-screen tablets, these toy-like machines are equipped with live-stream video cameras and thermal-imaging technology to give police a bird’s eye view of an accident scene and aid in search-and-rescue operations. RCMP’s F Division in Saskatchewan, which has taken a lead role testing unmanned aircrafts for the force, just posted on a government-contracting website notice of its intent to acquire as many as three Qubes and related accessories for about $270,000 ….”
- Retired Canadian Senator wants monument built in Canada to commemorate Canadians killed during WW2 in Italian campaign “…. “Today there are almost 6,000 Canadians buried across Italy in 19 cemeteries, all tended and looked after through the magnificent work of the Commonwealth War Graves Commission. My small committee wants to honour that Canadian sacrifice with a memorial in Toronto to the Italian campaign. We want all of Canada to remember what this incredible country did to free Europe from the yoke of Nazism.” ….”