Sunday, October 29, 2006

The NATO's role in Afghanistan

In his column published in the Edmonton Sun, Doug Beazley is asking us if the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) will abandon its mission in Afghanistan. One might be tempted to say that we can't confirm it for the moment if we look at the International Security Assistance Force's (ISAF) key figures.

However, a careful look at the present situation that prevails in the international political sphere probably gives us a hint that some members of the NATO might leave Canada on its own with the Afghan task that is getting more complicated than it were.

According to the latest source from the NATO (5th of October 2006), there are 31,000 soldiers serving in Afghanistan. In my opinion, the number of soldiers is certainly going to diminish. In fact, while Beazley indicated in his column that there are 5,000 American soldiers in Afghanistan, we can guess that this number will go down, because the USA is still stuck with its war in Iraq.

Furthermore, the harder the USA finds it to control the quagmire in Iraq, the more they'll have to deploy troops in this war that can be described as an ideological failure from the Bush Administration.

In addition to the USA's growing concern about Iraq, you can add to that Pakistan's unwillingness to help its "Westerna allies" in Afghanistan. In spite of the look of Pakistani president Pervez Musharaf's boring speeches, we can really have some doubts that Pakistani troops are keeping an eye on their national borders, because some Talibans certainly succeeded into going in Pakistan.

The question is now: if spreading democracy in Iraq doesn't work quite well, will it work for Afghanistan? The Canadian mission in this country is now described as a war in the public opinion, because more Canadian soldiers are dying.

Obviously, the mission in Afghanistan looks good according to Stephen Harper's official discourse on the mission. However, behind every discourses, there are real facts that are often concealed. Canada's Prime minister probably believes that he knows why it is part of Canada's interest to give its word to the Afghan people. Despite that fact, does the public knows why it is part of this country's interest to sacrifice soldiers for a cause that looks worthless for most people in Canada?

Some Canadian columnist probably does a good job by telling their opinion on this war, but it's up to Canada's Prime minister Stephen Harper to tell why our compatriots fight in Afghanistan. Are our fellow Canadians do it to serve the USA's imperialistic ambition or are they doing something that is really worth it? The more Stephen Harper remains silent on the so-called "legitimacy" of the mission in Afghan, the more the public opinion will despise this war.

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