Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Rememberence Day

Haven't posted in a bit. Getting ready for DS1's birthday and all that insane mom stuff got in the way of whatever part of the brain wanders to the more creative side of things. I was reading a forum where a poster was criticizing military powers to be for sending our Canadian troops to their deaths time and time again. Not the government, but the actual generals and colonels, people on the ground in Afghanistan. Given that he, like most Canadians knows little about how our military works, I wonder what sort of insight he had that I didn't.

I think as Canadians we are lucky to have one of the finest military in the world. We need better equipment and god knows way more support for our soldiers, but day after day, they put their lives on the line knowingly to protect people millions of miles away while we sit and play armchair quarterbacks. I don't think any other modern military can stand on a record of honour, bravery, compassion and hard work quite like our own. They have one of the world's crummiest jobs and I think they are making the best of it.

Should we be imposing our ideas of how the way things should be working in Afghanistan on the Afghan population? I don't know. Part of me thinks that real change is only going to come from within. It's happened before, but poor people are so outclassed nowadays by evil forces, armed to the teeth and far better funded. It is wrong to want to help? I'm not trying to keep the rose coloured glasses on and think that this is just about help, but is it okay to stand by and let this be sorted out for itself? We did that in Rwanda, where a Canadian soldier begged for help and by the time it came, nearly a million people were brutally slaughtered.

I don't agree with these conflicts, I mean, who agrees with conflict, but I know that I don't go to bed worrying every night about our military abusing their powers and wantonly wreaking havoc. I worry for everyone involved, but as a Canadian of course feel some kinship with those overseas and hope that they come home safe and sound to their loving families.

My job is to poke the government (and you know I will *g*) to at least get them to throw a bit more support behind them, or get them out. It's one thing to send them off, but lets take care of them too.

I know a lot of people think that people of my generation (I'm 30) don't care or give thought to our military. My grandfather served in WWII for Canada. My dad served in Vietnam (he's American). My friends serve in Afghanistan. I care and I remember. I don't know whether that makes a difference, being that one drop in the bucket thing. I feel I should share that any time I go to the bridge to honour one of our fallen soldiers in my small way, in my part of Toronto, there are Canadians of every shade and background. Some were not born here, some were, young, old, English speaking and not. We're all there. We understand the importance of our military and we respect it, and I know it's not something said often enough, but you guys out there are doing a good job.

No comments: