- Feb 8, 2007
- Land of Swine and Maple Syrup
Should be an interesting year.
Stay safe brothers!
Stay safe brothers!
Canadian ready to lead NATO forces in Kandahar
Brig.-Gen. Denis Thompson, the next commander of NATO troops in Afghanistan, speaks on CTV's Canada AM from Petawawa, Ont. on Friday, April 11, 2008.
Updated Fri. Apr. 11 2008 12:49 PM ET
CTV.ca News Staff
The Canadian who will take over the leadership of NATO forces in Kandahar says recommendations made in the Manley panel report should help the war-torn country move towards a fuller democracy.
Brig.-Gen. Denis Thompson will lead Joint Task Force Afghanistan after a handover ceremony in May. He told Canada AM Friday that Canadian soldiers can help Afghanis achieve a stable country through a three-prong process.
The Manley panel recommended earlier this year that NATO find a 1,000-soldier battle group to assist Canada's 2,500 troops in Kandahar province -- one of the most insurgency-wracked parts of Afghanistan. It also said Canada's soldiers should be supplied with helicopters and aerial drones. NATO indicated earlier this month that it will provide the additional troops and equipment.
"If you go into the details (of the report) you'll see that we need to continue to work along all three lines of operations -- security, development, and governance," Thompson told CTV's Canada AM Friday.
"That's precisely what we're planning to do. It is a long process. There's no question about that."
Thompson said NATO has to provide the "security bubble" that will allow civilians to work to develop the country's government and infrastructure. He said he's been preparing for the upcoming mission since last summer, a training period that will be about the length of the mission itself.
"That's included at least six exercises in such places as Honduras, Texas, and Alberta," he said.
Thompson won't be the only one heading to Afghanistan soon. Master Cpl. Toby Miller will also be heading over in the next batch of soldiers to be deployed to the region.
It will be his second deployment to the country.
His wife, Cpl. Sheri Amiro, also a Canadian soldier, was recently in Afghanistan herself.
Miller said he's looking forward to going to Afghanistan and doing what he has been trained to do. But he noted that his wife will face some difficult challenges while he's away.
Miller recalled concern over her safety when she was in Afghanistan.
"She was gone. She was the one in a dangerous path. So, you find yourself worrying," he told Canada AM.
"I get to see it from the other end this time," Amiro added.