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NDP want to see Canadian Forces peacekeepers in Central African Republic

kilekaldar

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The Canadian Press
Published Wednesday, April 23, 2014 3:59PM EDT
OTTAWA -- The federal New Democrats want to see Canadian Forces peacekeepers on the ground in the Central African Republic to prevent genocide.
Paul Dewar, the NDP's foreign affairs critic, urged the government to respond to a United Nations call for peacekeeping assistance, saying such missions are part of Canada's historic role on the world stage.
Dewar said Canada and the Western world must heed the lesson of the Rwanda genocide that left 800,000 civilians dead 20 years ago this month.
Sectarian violence in the Central African Republic has forced 200,000 people to flee to neighbouring countries, while displacing 600,000 internally.
Earlier this month, the UN Security Council authorized a force of 12,000 to help soldiers from France and the African Union that are trying to protect civilians in the country.
Dewar said the Canadian Forces are in a position to provide military expertise in logistics and training.
But he said Canada should also send soldiers that would be part of an on-the-ground peacekeeping force that is being assembled in the coming months, in part because CAR is a French-speaking country.
"This will be a complicated conflict to deal with if we don't do anything now," said Dewar.
Earlier this month, the Czech Republic said it would contribute 250 troops for the mission.
A spokesman for Foreign Affairs Minister John Baird said Canada is reviewing its options "thoroughly" with its allies.
So far, Canada has contributed $16 million in humanitarian assistance and $5 million to support the security efforts of the African Union and France.


Read more: http://www.ctvnews.ca/canada/ndp-want-to-see-canadian-forces-peacekeepers-in-central-african-republic-1.1789177#ixzz2zlGeSg6R


So does the NDP support an increase in military funding to pay for a deployment to the CAR? Will they still support the mission if Canadians die there? I'm guessing no, and no.
 

PuckChaser

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A bigger question is does CAR or the African Union even want non-African nation peacekeepers, and would those peacekeepers be enabled by the ROE to actually stop the genocide?
 

The_Falcon

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PuckChaser said:
A bigger question is does CAR or the African Union even want non-African nation peacekeepers, and would those peacekeepers be enabled by the ROE to actually stop the genocide?

You honestly think questions like that go through the heads of people who suggest these types of missions?
 

dimsum

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I almost feel sorry for the Opposition critic.  I'm certain that he/she has an inkling of how ridiculous this is (or, conversely, how sound a Government position could be) but is essentially forced to oppose it because, well, that's what he/she's there for.  I'm sure that Mr. Dewar thought of Rwanda, sighed heavily to himself and shook his head before saying what he said. 

At least that's the optimistic side of me talking.
 

Robert0288

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Dimsum said:
I almost feel sorry for the Opposition critic.  I'm certain that he/she has an inkling of how ridiculous this is (or, conversely, how sound a Government position could be) but is essentially forced to oppose it because, well, that's what he/she's there for.  I'm sure that Mr. Dewar thought of Rwanda, sighed heavily to himself and shook his head before saying what he said. 

At least that's the optimistic side of me talking.

I hope so, but agreeing with the government on this issue doesn't exactly play to the NDP base. 
 

Phoenix80

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The following piece may have something to do with the ongoing conflict in CAR and France's foreign policy. It raises some very good points:

http://www.spectator.co.uk/features/9169081/why-i-wont-let-my-children-learn-french/

thnx

 

pbi

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I have to agree with the assessment that this was another NDP throw-away gesture. You can do that when you know that nothing you propose will ever happen.

That said, I would not put it past the CPC to make some sort of token force deployment in order to pull the rug out from under the NDP and, possibly, the Liberals, on this "return to cuddly UN peacekeeping" mantra.

The part that probably nobody wants to talk about is that any force that was actually going to do any good in CAR (or other wretched places like that), would have to be big enough, and mean enough, to deter some of the nasties infesting the situation. That means being ready to kill people.

Hmmmmm...mental images of Canadian soldiers killing black people in Africa....flashback.
 

MarkOttawa

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One trusts the good progressives have read these parts of the UN Security Council resolution authorizing the UN force for the CAR:


    Acting under Chapter VII of the Charter of the United Nations…

    29.  Authorizes MINUSCA to take all necessary means to carry out its mandate, within its capabilities and its areas of deployment [note force not supposed to be up and going until Sept. 2014, see para. 20]…
http://www.un.org/News/Press/docs//2014/sc11349.doc.htm

Now that’s not the “traditional” blue-beret peacekeeping, firing only in self-defence, that the party has oozed to embrace.  It’s combat when and if necessary; does the party really want to get Canada back into that game?

Note AU MISCA force basically to be absorbed by UN MINUSCA:

...
21.  Further decides that the transfer of authority from MISCA to MINUSCA
http://www.un.org/en/peacekeeping/missions/minusca/
will take place on 15 September 2014 and that, in the period from the adoption of this resolution to this transfer of authority, MINUSCA will implement the tasks mandated in paragraphs 27and 28 below through its civilian component, while MISCA will continue to implement its tasks as mandated by resolution 2127 (2013) and that, on 15 September 2014, MINUSCA shall commence the immediate implementation, through its military and police components, of the tasks mandated in paragraphs 27 and 28 below;

“22.  Requests the Secretary-General to include in MINUSCA as many MISCA military and police personnel as possible and in line with United Nations standards, in close coordination with the AU and ECCAS and as of 15 September 2014, in accordance with the Secretary-General’s Policy on human rights screening of United Nations personnel...

Meanwhile the EU is slowly deploying its own, much smaller (1,000-strong), force to the CAR. :
http://isiseurope.wordpress.com/2014/04/11/eu-mission-to-the-central-african-republic-eufor-car-bangui-part-iii/

Mark
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Journeyman

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MarkOttawa said:
Now that’s not the “traditional” blue-beret peacekeeping, firing only in self-defence, that the party has oozed to embrace.  It’s combat when and if necessary; does the party really want to get Canada back into that game?
One just has to recall some other cheery UN Chapter 7 missions.....Afghanistan, Somalia, Rwanda.....
 

Kirkhill

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Phoenix80 said:
The following piece may have something to do with the ongoing conflict in CAR and France's foreign policy. It raises some very good points:

http://www.spectator.co.uk/features/9169081/why-i-wont-let-my-children-learn-french/

thnx

....President Hollande said, ‘Speaking French means speaking the language of human rights. The Rights of Man were written in French.’ ....

And Rousseau was Geneva Swiss of Huguenot descent .... in other words not exactly the model French citizen until after the Revolution.
 

Shrek1985

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Oh sure, I just bet they're willing to chop into their own social justice warrior projects to pay for this little adventure too, eh?
 

a_majoor

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Of course the second the situation went south and Canadian "Peacekeepers" were fired upon or fired in accordance with the ROE's guess who would be first to stand up in the House and denounce the Government for war mongering or putting Canadians in harm's way.....
 

Humphrey Bogart

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MarkOttawa said:
One trusts the good progressives have read these parts of the UN Security Council resolution authorizing the UN force for the CAR:


Now that’s not the “traditional” blue-beret peacekeeping, firing only in self-defence, that the party has oozed to embrace.  It’s combat when and if necessary; does the party really want to get Canada back into that game?

Note AU MISCA force basically to be absorbed by UN MINUSCA:

Meanwhile the EU is slowly deploying its own, much smaller (1,000-strong), force to the CAR. :
http://isiseurope.wordpress.com/2014/04/11/eu-mission-to-the-central-african-republic-eufor-car-bangui-part-iii/

Mark
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It's very convenient of the NDP to also ignore that the French have been in combat since entering the CAR and have taken casualties.  Here is an article from less then a day ago.

French troops in firefight in CAR capital Bangui

Latest update : 2014-04-26
French forces returned fire when they came under attack in Bangui, a MISCA official said Friday, after residents in the Central African Republic's capital accused the French soldiers of opening fire on civilians, killing at least five.

The soldiers were on patrol in the mainly Muslim PK5 district when they were shot at by unidentified gunmen late Thursday, triggering a riposte, an official in the MISCA (African-led International Support Mission to the Central African Republic) peacekeeping force said.

The gunfight continued for more than three hours. Residents in neighbouring districts said they heard heavy arms fire for several hours as a helicopter flew overhead.

"The exact toll of the shooting is unknown," the MISCA official added.

A French military statement on Friday also said the soldiers had come under attack and were defending themselves.

Ousmane Abakar, a resident of the PK5 neighbourhood, said he saw five people killed
and 10 injured after the altercation, which lasted until Friday morning.

More at the following link

http://www.france24.com/en/20140426-french-troops-firefight-bangui-central-african-misca/

These French soldiers in the CAR don't exactly look like traditional peacekeepers do they?  ::)

4822fd7369f67029450f6a7067007262.jpg


AA83587EE5BF10EDC66C248893A0B7_h243_w430_m2_q80_chZbXqUXJ.jpg


French_soldiers_have_exchanged_fire_with_former_rebels_in_Bangui_Central_African_Republic_capital_640_11_December_2013_001.jpg


There is also this nasty little incident that happened last March involving South African soldiers:

Jacob Zuma: 13 South African soldiers killed in CAR

Thirteen South African soldiers were killed in the Central African Republic as rebels seized the capital over the weekend, President Jacob Zuma has said.

Mr Zuma said the South Africans had died in a nine-hour "high-tempo battle" against the "bandits" in Bangui.

South Africa had about 200 troops stationed in the city to block Seleka rebels from seizing power.

Ousted CAR leader Francois Bozize has fled to neighbouring Cameroon, officials there have announced.

More at the following link:
http://www.bbc.com/news/world-africa-21923624

Any operation in the CAR would require a significant force with flexible ROE and casualties would be expected.  This NDP proposal completely ignores the present situation on the ground.   
 

dimsum

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RoyalDrew said:
It's very convenient of the NDP to also ignore that the French have been in combat since entering the CAR and have taken casualties.  Here is an article from less then a day ago.

(snip)

Any operation in the CAR would require a significant force with flexible ROE and casualties would be expected.  This NDP proposal completely ignores the present situation on the ground. 

It may be the House of Cards marathon I just finished, but when I see almost throwaway* proposals like the one they're suggesting, I have to wonder what they are using this to draw the conversation away from.  :Tin-Foil-Hat:

* Throwaway in that no one would seriously give it any consideration in its NDP-suggested form.
 

George Wallace

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How can anyone take the NDP seriously when it comes to Defence matters.  Us older folk remember back in the day when we had Peacekeepers in Cyprus.  The NDP of the day, always the anti-military types they are today, came up with a suggestion that we kill two birds with one stone: 1.  Solve Canada's unemployment problems of the day; and 2.  Provide Peacekeepers in the relatively stable environment on Cyprus.  Their plan:  Land a Canadian Armed Forces Boeing 707 in Toronto and fill it with unemployed people off the street, give them uniforms and send them to Cyprus to patrol the Green Line.  Such simplistic plans are common of the NDP and showcases their total naiveté when it comes to Defence and Security.
 

Happy Guy

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Ref: http://xfer.ndp.ca/2013/policybook/2013-04-17-PolicyBook_E.pdf

This thread lead me to read the NDP policy book and I must admit that, in my opinion, it is full of wide eye idealism devoid of pragmatism and the realities of the world.

The NDP and the Liberals, do not understand what peacekeeping or what peacemaking is.  Having done UN deployments,  peacekeepers are not like boy scouts as former Prime Minister Chrétien implied (http://www.prime-ministers.ca/chretien/issues.php).

Any deployment into the CAR requires considerable forethought, planning and understanding the realities of this type of mission. 
- Is this a peacekeeping or peacemaking mission?
- Is this align with Canada's foreign policies?  What are the objectives?  Can this be translated into military objectives?
- What are the expectations?  You will not have peace between the warring fractions within a year or two.  Do we stay for ten or twenty years?  Who will be handover to? We are talking about a long term whole of government commitment that will consume a large portion of DFAIT and DND's time and money without much noticeable progress.
- Is there appetite from the Canadian public to have both civilian (diplomats and aid workers) and military casualties?

The situation in the CAR is indeed tragic and horrible and it requires the world's attention.  I am just a soldier but I would suggest you use all the political tools first before you throw in the military.

It is easy to see why the NDP will remain in opposition - they are like the continual back seat drivers who criticize but offer no practical or helpful solutions.
 

Colin Parkinson

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George Wallace said:
How can anyone take the NDP seriously when it comes to Defence matters.  Us older folk remember back in the day when we had Peacekeepers in Cyprus.  The NDP of the day, always the anti-military types they are today, came up with a suggestion that we kill two birds with one stone: 1.  Solve Canada's unemployment problems of the day; and 2.  Provide Peacekeepers in the relatively stable environment on Cyprus.  Their plan:  Land a Canadian Armed Forces Boeing 707 in Toronto and fill it with unemployed people off the street, give them uniforms and send them to Cyprus to patrol the Green Line.  Such simplistic plans are common of the NDP and showcases their total naiveté when it comes to Defence and Security.

We just need a law similar to the forest firefighter laws we have/had here in BC. Walk through the starbucks on Yonge street and select the healthier looking men and women and say right all of you are going on a UN mission to CAR now! You have 5 minutes to phone your loved ones, guns and uniforms will be issued upon arrival. We cn save the world and drain the NDP of it's voters in one fell swoop.
 

Jarnhamar

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Why does the NDP want to see more injured Canadian soldiers and further expose us to the Veterans affairs monster?
 

The_Falcon

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ObedientiaZelum said:
Why does the NDP want to see more injured Canadian soldiers and further expose us to the Veterans affairs monster?

I am sure they believe blue berets/helmets will impart a mystical invulnerability upon the wearer.  No one shoots at people wearing UN Blue headgear afterall ::)
 

Edward Campbell

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George Wallace said:
How can anyone take the NDP seriously when it comes to Defence matters.  Us older folk remember back in the day when we had Peacekeepers in Cyprus.  The NDP of the day, always the anti-military types they are today, came up with a suggestion that we kill two birds with one stone: 1.  Solve Canada's unemployment problems of the day; and 2.  Provide Peacekeepers in the relatively stable environment on Cyprus.  Their plan:  Land a Canadian Armed Forces Boeing 707 in Toronto and fill it with unemployed people off the street, give them uniforms and send them to Cyprus to patrol the Green Line.  Such simplistic plans are common of the NDP and showcases their total naiveté when it comes to Defence and Security.

The people doing NDP policy are not fools. They are doing politics, and, as an opposition should, being critical of government action or inaction.

I know Mr Dewar slightly, (he is my constituency MP for Ottawa Centre); I have attended a couple of seminars with him. He's a bright, thoughtful, informed fellow. He understands the characteristics and limitations of military force. He is not, I think, a true believer in the UN's Department of Peacekeeping Operations and is well aware of it's inability to manage complex combat operations.

That being said, I have no doubt that the UN will come sniffing around. We are a capable, sophisticated military force and we are a member of la Francophonie. I expect that Minister Baird will be, maybe even already has been approached by New York looking for troops or money, likely both.

Do I think the UN can solve the problems of central Africa? No. Do I think it should try? Yes. Do I think Canada should help? Yes, again.

What kind of help? Some money, most likely, and, maybe some staff assistance, maybe even staff officers in the UN's mission HQ. But France, despite being the source of many of Central Africa's problems, is best positioned and has a self proclaimed strategic interest in the region and it should do 99% of the heavy lifting ... especially with the money and troops.

Even with serious French help I think it is a hopeless quest ... I'm not sure how it will be resolved, but it will be by Africans, on the ground, or by the Chinese.

 
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