Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Overwrought About ISIS Mission

Ok, first step in post-terrorist punditry is to PANIC.  Second step is to jump on politicians for whatever it is they say.  Folks are upset that Trudeau quickly, in response to questions about his stance on the CF-18 part of the ISIS mission, said that his position was not changed.

They are citing how this will hurt the Canadian position in the alliance.  Meh.  Sure, the position is incoherent as Michael Den Tandt argued well (the headline is more panicky than need be).  But politicians understand other politicians, and they get that Trudeau cannot run away from a campaign promise less than a month after the election.  At least not easily.

Is this dishonourable as Lysiane Gagnon puts it?  Not really.  A far greater challenge to the alliance was Canada leaving Kandahar in mid-war.  In together, out together?  Not so much in Afghanistan, as Canada was one of only two countries to leave much earlier than the rest, and the Dutch had a fallen government to point towards.

So, please, excuse me if I find the concern trolling about the opinions of the allies at this moment to be just a bit overwrought.  If Canada kicks in the trainers that seem to be promised, then Trudeau gets to keep his promise and the allies will get that.  And if Trudeau keeps the Auroras and Polaris plane (reconnaissance and refueling, respectively) in the mission, the allies will appreciate that quite a bit since those are far more scarce than fighter-bombers like the CF-18.

There are good criticisms of Trudeau's stance, but dishonour and disrepute are not really among them.

1 comment: said...

To be fair, let's not forget that when Canada asked for a bit of an extra hand in Kandahar ~2007-2008, asking for either more troops from NATO countries or easing of caveats, all I heard were crickets. You ARE right, though, re: politicians understand other politicians.