Afghan War Takes Toll On U.S. Ally

Posted on Wednesday, January 31 at 10:06 by jensonj
Although its nearly 3,000 troops account for less than 10 percent of the allied forces in Afghanistan, Canada absorbed nearly 20 percent of the coalition’s combat deaths last year, losing 36 soldiers. A Canadian diplomat also was killed, by a suicide bomber. The disproportionate casualty count in a region that Taliban commanders have pledged to seize this spring has triggered debate at home about whether Canada is finding itself in a quagmire of American making. The deployment is a strain for military families. Moreover, the Canadian mission points up the stresses and strains caused by unequal burden-sharing within NATO. Already, alliance unity has been frayed by what commanders describe as an insufficient overall troop commitment and rules that sharply limit the combat capabilities of some participants.

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