Written for a Canadian audience but with the perspective of someone who has been in Afghanistan.
http://www.winnipegfreepress.com/opi...142432715.htmlSpeed up withdrawal from Afghanistan?
MOSCOW -- As perhaps the only independent witness to every phase of Canada's military engagement in Afghanistan from 2002 to this year, I have always been among the evolving mission's strongest backers. I have observed what has been learned and what has been accomplished, and have always come away impressed by the soldiers and leaders who are part of what is the best small army in the world.
But only a couple of weeks after visiting Canada's trainers in Kabul and Herat, I am in a quandary.
What a lone American sergeant did early Sunday morning -- patiently going door to door in a parched stretch of rural Kandahar that was for more than five years a Canadian responsibility, to murder 16 sleeping Afghan civilians, including nine kids -- is beyond comprehension.
What the consequences will be for coalition troops -- including slightly more than 900 Canadian advisers, who work closely every day with thousands of Afghan soldiers and police -- is unknown. But consequences can surely be expected for the actions of this soldier, who was apparently able to walk off by himself because he was attached to a group of U.S. Special Forces commandos who frequently operate outside of forward operating bases....