Mark Collins – “The end of peacekeeping, and what comes next for Canada’s soldiers”

Further to this post and “Comments”,

UN Peace Support Operations: Canada’s Back! (into Africa and…)

the conclusion of a Globe and Mail editorial:

“Canada is back,” the government boasted on Friday. But peacekeeping isn’t. We are about to embark on an undertaking that may routinely put Canadian soldiers’ lives at risk in the most dangerous places in the world, and where Canada’s national interests may not even be at stake.

Are Canadians ready for that? And did they ever want it?

Exactly. But far too many Canadians ignorantly long for a mythical tradition. Including the Crvena Zvezda. Here’s the pap headline of their editorial:

Canada finally dusts off its blue helmet: Editorial
Canada is ready to assume its rightful role as a nation dedicated to UN peacekeeping following a welcome new commitment of troops and money.

Dust off your history instead:

Not Remembering Canada’s Real Post-WW II Military History

Including Canadian nukes.

Mark Collins, a prolific Ottawa blogger, is a Fellow at the Canadian Global Affairs Institute; he tweets @Mark3Ds


19 thoughts on “Mark Collins – “The end of peacekeeping, and what comes next for Canada’s soldiers””

  1. A friend well-acquainted with Canadian defence and foreign affairs matters responds:

    “Quite honestly to me this seems to be (to borrow an American trope) going abroad seeking dragons to conquer. Maybe Mali [at least trying to help keep Jihadis down] but in DRC and CAR there is nothing but anarchy and we will/can do nothing to improve completely hopeless situations.

    Colombia, yes. This actually is closest to real ‘peacekeeping’ and doing it together with Mexico adds value in several other categories besides the central aim. And it is close enough to involve Canada’s real security interests not to mention our economic and personal ties with a country which has always had a lot of promise but never quite realized it because of internal factional fighting of one sort or another.”


    Mark Collins

    1. Terry Glavin nails it with a theme I have frequently repeated:


      ‘The Mandela Memorial Ceremony and Canada: “…a little people, a silly people…’

      Mark Collins

  2. More:

    “Colombia peace agreement sets stage for Canadian peacekeepers

    The Liberal government is considering whether to send unarmed observers to help monitor the agreement. Defence Minister Harjit Sajjan’s office confirmed last week to the Canadian Press that Colombia is one of the options being considered as the government decides where to deploy upwards of 600 Canadian peacekeepers.

    Canadian representatives have been in contact with the UN looking for more information about the observer mission in Colombia, including potential security hazards, the Canadian Press noted in its report.

    Colombians are to vote on the peace agreement in a plebiscite on Oct. 2. If all goes as expected, the United Nations will begin deploying 450 unarmed observers to around 40 locations around Colombia soon after to begin monitoring implementation of the agreement, CP pointed out. The one-year monitoring mission would involve ensuring both sides adhere to the peace deal as FARC forces turn over their weapons and begin the process of reintegration into Colombian society, it added.”

    Mark Collins

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