The Prime Minister of Canada must live up to the promise he made during the election campaign, and which he included in the mandate letter to his Minister of Defence, and forthwith end Canadian air strikes in Iraq and Syria.
Despite this unequivocal commitment, reiterated by the PM to the President of the United States in their first conversation after the election, Canada continues to engage in air strikes and, unbelievably, even increased the tempo over the Christmas holiday period.
Since the horrific terrorist attacks in Paris in November, there has been an incessant drumbeat in the media that Canada should reverse its decision to end air strikes, as if the decision was based on a misunderstanding of the threat posed by Islamic State, rather than on a determination that Canada could play a more useful role in other ways.
RI President Peggy Mason wrote about a more effective role for Canada in an article for the Canadian International Council on December 11th, 2015. In light of the continued Canadian bombing, we are reposting that article below.
Bombing and training are both problematic
The United States alone can easily handle all militarily useful airstrike targets against ISIS. Participation by others is therefore symbolic and token at best. While in the case of Arab states, this might at least have been useful — in that it would weaken the idea that this is a war between the West and Islam — those coalition members have abandoned their bombing in Iraq and Syria in favour of decimating the already utterly impoverished country