Our view: Our post-Afghan role will change

July 5 isn’t likely to leave a lasting mark on history. However, the end of Canada’s mission in Afghanistan is a historic moment for our nation. The book is closed on our decade-long involvement and it will take at least as much time before we’ll truly understand what our soldiers were able to achieve.

July 5 isn’t likely to leave a lasting mark on history. However, the end of Canada’s mission in Afghanistan is a historic moment for our nation. The book is closed on our decade-long involvement and it will take at least as much time before we’ll truly understand what our soldiers were able to achieve.

Locally, more than 300 members of the Canadian Forces stationed at CFB Esquimalt took part in operations in Afghanistan. These men and women served as doctors, nurses, medical assistants, construction engineers, divers, military police as well as roadside bomb disposal and combat support in one of the most dangerous places on the planet.

The question now is what’s next for Canada’s military? After spending so much time and resources in Afghanistan the culture of our forces has been indelibly shaped by this experience.

Of course, some of the attention is now focused on Libya and its ongoing civil war.

From CFB Esquimalt, 250 personnel are preparing to sail for the north African nation.

HMCS Vancouver, a frigate considered one of the workhorses of Canada’s Navy, is expected to leave from here early next week.

It will join Canadian troops already fighting with NATO forces. But this does not appear to be the kind of endless conflict that was Afghanistan.

And then there are plans for a ramped up military presence in the Arctic. This will also take tremendous resources but will be an entirely different kind of mission.

The question remains about what our military’s role should be outside our borders.

The war in Afghanistan cost Canadians more than $11 billion, a number that could double as we deal with the legacy of returning veterans.

Despite our departure the work continues, including by a contingent of Canadians tasked with training Afghans to take charge of their own security. Elsewhere in the world we can only guess where the next trouble spot will be.

We might not make a big deal come next July 5, but Canadians can take pride in the work done by our military personnel over the last decade and feel confident that whatever comes next, they’ll continue to make a difference on the world stage.

-Vic News

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

The development permit application is for the back of a property at 2522 Dunsmuir Ave. Photo by Mike Chouinard
Privacy, heritage reasons for secondary house denial in Cumberland

Majority of council wants to see something more in line with Camp Road’s character

Local governments such as Cumberland’s are calling for Ottawa to treat opioids as a public health crisis. (Black Press file photo)
Cumberland councillor motivated by family member’s drug death

Council supports resolution for Ottawa to treat narcotics as public health emergency

Comox Valley Nature hosts an online lecture Sunday, April 18, to address the human and scientific perspective on climate change. Photo supplied
Upcoming Comox Valley Nature webinar addresses climate change

Comox Valley Nature hosts an online lecture Sunday, April 18, when Dr.… Continue reading

30 years after becoming part of the YANA family, Angela Furlotte is all grown up and enjoys her three dogs while working and living in the Comox Valley.
YANA founder helps family in need: a historical account

Andrea Postal Special to The Record The first few months of Angela… Continue reading

Photo collage of loved ones lost to substance use and overdose. (Photo courtesy Moms Stop The Harm)
B.C. overdose deaths still rising 5 years after public health emergency declared

Moms Stop the Harm calls on B.C. to provide safe supply in response to deadly illicit drug use

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

The following is a list of restaurants offering take-out and patio dining. ADOBE STOCK IMAGE
List of Comox Valley restaurants offering take-out, patio dining options

Restaurants in the Comox Valley continue to adapt to government-imposed restrictions in… Continue reading

Demonstrators at the legislature on April 14 called on the province to decriminalize drug possession and provide widespread access to regulated safe supply across B.C. (Jake Romphf/News Staff)
Rally calls for decriminalization, safe supply on 5th anniversary of overdose emergency declaration

From 2016 to the end of February, 7,072 British Columbians died due to overdose

An AAP will be used to determine if rural residents in the CVRD want a roadside garbage/recycling collection service. File photo
Roadside waste collection proposed in rural areas of Comox Valley

Pending results of the upcoming Alternate Approval Process (AAP), a rural roadside… Continue reading

(Government of Canada)
Liberal MP caught stark naked during House of Commons video conference

William Amos, in Quebec, appeared on the screens of his fellow members of Parliament completely naked

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry updates B.C.’s COVID-19 situation at the B.C. legislature, Feb. 1, 2020. (B.C. government)
B.C.’s COVID-19 case count jumps to 1,168 Wednesday, nearly 400 in hospital

Now 120 coronavirus patients in intensive care, six more deaths

Moss covered branches are seen in the Avatar Old Growth Forest near Port Renfrew on Vancouver Island, B.C. Thursday, Sept. 29, 2011. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
B.C. blockades aimed at protecting old-growth forests reveal First Nation split

Two Pacheedaht chiefs say they’re ‘concerned about the increasing polarization over forestry activities’ in the territory

Richmond RCMP Chief Superintendent Will Ng said, in March, the force received a stand-out number of seven reports of incidents that appeared to have “racial undertones.” (Phil McLachlan/Capital News)
‘Racially motivated’ incidents on the rise in B.C’s 4th largest city: police

Three incidents in Richmond are currently being invested as hate crimes, says RCMP Chief Superintendent Will Ng

Most Read