Posts Tagged ‘CFB Borden’
- On the one hand, Canada seems happy with the U.S. surge clearing the way for more development work in Afghanistan. “…. As its 2011 exit countdown in Kandahar approaches, Canada is piggybacking on American-led gains in clearing out militants in this former Taliban heartland to pour in resources, push development and convince those in former insurgent safe havens to switch sides ….”
- On the other hand, Kandahar City’s mayor isn’t so happy about how Canada, the U.S. and the U.K. are spending money in the province. “…. In a letter to Canada’s ambassador earlier this month, Ghulam Hayder Hamidi complained that Ottawa’s contracting practices are contributing to the culture of malfeasance in Afghanistan. He also expressed similar concerns about the United States and Britain. “Your prime minister, (U.S.) President (Barack) Obama and the prime minister of England are complaining that we didn’t clean the corruption in Afghanistan (and) they will stop helping,” Hamidi said in a recent interview with The Canadian Press. “Who is doing the corruption? You are doing the corruption.” The letter, delivered earlier this month to Canada’s civilian representative in Kandahar, suggests that the federal government is being taken to the cleaners by a handful of guileful Afghan companies. As an example, he cited a recent $1.9-million project to install solar lights that has been plagued by problems. Hamidi also accused Canadian civilians of spending taxpayer dollars needlessly and ineffectively in some areas, and companies selected by federal officials of providing low quality merchandise, or services at inflated prices ….”
- The newest under-boss of ISAF’s Regional Command South is a Canadian General. “A St. Albert resident has taken over as Canadian deputy commander of a busy region in war-torn southern Afghanistan. Brig.-Gen. Andre Corbould is the new deputy commander of Regional Command South, an area that covers the provinces of Kandahar, Daikundi, Uruzgan and Zabul. The area was previously under British control but is now led by the American 10th Mountain Division. Corbould says Gen. James L. Terry, commander of 10th Mountain, was looking for a Canadian to fill the deputy commander role and asked if he was interested in the position ….” According to General Corbould’s bio, he was already Deputy Commanding General of 10th Mountain as of this year.
- A Canadian Senate committee is calling on Canada to keep protecting Afghan women’s rights, even as the combat task wraps up. “The Senate Committee on Human Rights today releases its 14-recommendation report on Canada’s commitment to support women’s rights in Afghanistan post-2011. “Canada should not barter women’s security in Afghanistan,” Senator Nancy Ruth, the committee’s chair said. “Women’s rights should not be traded away in the geopolitical game for Afghan peace and security.” Entitled, Training in Afghanistan: Include Women (PDF), the report delineates how Canada can empower Afghan women in their diversity. It targets five critical areas to support that goal: security, political reconciliation, justice, education, and local development. “It is not in Canada’s interests to hold Afghan women back from complete participation in capacity building, whether they live in cities or rural areas,” Senator Mobina S. B. Jaffer, the committee’s deputy chair said. “The change in the Canadian Forces mission gives Canada a tremendous opportunity to design gender-sensitive training practices that underpin women’s security.” With the end of Canada’s combat mission in sight, the report’s recommendations include gender-sensitive training for Afghan security and Canadian Forces personnel and the enlistment of more women in security forces ….”
- Taliban Propaganda Watch: WTF? Two MORE articles on Holbrooke’s death from the Taliban?
- CF looking into suicides at CFB Borden. “…. Suicides are a rarity at Borden – the most recorded in any one year during the past decade is two. Suddenly, within two months, four soldiers from the same base were gone. By March, the Canadian Military had reported a total of seven suicides had occurred in 2010 – three of them during the first eight days of the year. The situation was enough of a concern for officials to look further. Military documents and correspondence show then-commander of CFB Borden, Liet-Col. Peter Kouri, probed the circumstances of the four soldiers who died while on training at the Barrie, Ont.-area base. In an e-mail dated Feb. 23, two days after Vanden-Heuvel’s death, Kouri told military brass about the “extraordinary” measures: “Following the fourth person taking their life while undergoing training at CFB Borden this year, an extraordinary Comd Advisory Team was convened.” The primary aim was to address the issue of suicide prevention, the second was to ensure the chain of command had a shared understanding of the background ….”
- “An Ottawa-based firm has dropped out of a Defence Department armoured vehicle competition after determining its product didn’t fit the requirements. Thales Canada made the decision to withdraw from the program, freeing up its partner, DEW Engineering also of Ottawa, to seek out new alliances for the hotly contested defence program. The Tactical Armoured Patrol Vehicle (TAPV) program would replace the Canadian army’s existing fleet of RG-31 mine protected vehicles and the Coyote wheeled light armoured vehicles. Besides the initial procurement of 500 vehicles, there is an option for an additional 100. DND has not released specific details on the cost of the program, but it’s estimated that the TAPV will cost well over $1 billion ….”
- Reading tea leaves on possibly changing the name of Canada’s Navy: the PM’s office reportedly told party faithful via e-mail that “the government was following the debate in the Senate with interest but had “no plans to rename Maritime Command at this time.” Remember the last time the PM said he noted something “with interest”? A pretty big change of heart happened there. Not saying it’s a guarantee, by any means, but just throwing it out there.
- Note to CF’s Army News folks: I’m looking forward to what appears to be expanded coverage of the troops downrange in Afghanistan – stay safe while doing your job of spreading the word. That said, brace yourself for harsher criticism than the following if you keep calling yourselves “journalists” (PDF of story transcript here if link doesn’t work). As much as I like your work, I doubt we’ll be seeing a lot of critics in your pieces talking about how the mission sucks, so it’s not really fair to consider yourselves “journalists” in the traditional sense. When the story lead reads “Reporters gear up to live side-by-side with soldiers for duration of Afghanistan tour,” this suggests that the “reporters” are not “soldiers”, which is NOT the case here.