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Opinion: Government Lied About Response To End Of CF-18 Anti-ISIS Mission

WINNIPEG, MB – When the Trudeau government ended Canada’s air combat mission against ISIS, they presented the change as something our allies were fine with.

The evidence now suggests that was a lie.

According to documents obtained by the Official Opposition, the Iraqi government did not respond with happiness to the end of the CF-18 deployment, and in fact asked the government to reconsider their decision. Iraq wanted Canada’s contribution to the anti-ISIS fight to continue.

Reportedly, Iraq’s defence minister Khalid Obaidi asked Canada to continue the air missions on “numerous occasions.”

The government refused.

However, the issue here is not the refusal. For better or worse, ending the CF-18 missions was a campaign promise.

The issue is the wide gap between how the government presented the response to the end of the mission, and the reality of how our allies against ISIS truly felt.

On the day he met with Iraqi officials in both Baghdad and Erbil – where we were asked to continue the mission – Canadian Defence Minister Harjit Sajjan said he had not even had “one discussion about the CF-18s,” despite the documents prepared for Global Affairs Canada stating otherwise.

At the time, Sajjan declined to mention the request that Canada continue the CF-18 mission.

False perception

The lie created a false perception that our allies in the fight against ISIS were totally on-board with us ending the CF-18 mission early.

Of course, had the truth come out the government would have been forced to answer difficult questions about why Canada was reducing our role in the battle against the most evil organization on the earth, and why Canadians weren’t told the truth about how our allies felt about it.

Once again, the government has put political expediency above levelling with Canadians.

Spencer Fernando, MyToba News

Spencer Fernando is a columnist and reporter for MyToba News. You can read more of Spencer’s writing at his website SpencerFernando.com
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1 Comment

  • LesinCanada says:

    My question is the same as many others: why are we incurring the expense of maintaining a warplane fleet, indeed planning to expensively replace the current fleet, if we’re not prepared to use it? Similarly, what’s the point of training fighter pilots if they’re only going to remain idle?