Canada''s Involvement in Afghanistan: What''s the Plan?

October 15, 2009 :: Rick Casson
Moderated by Duane Pendergast

Held 12:00 - 1:30pm.

Canada’s current role in Afghanistan began in late 2001 following the September 11 terrorist attacks on New York. Over the years Canada’s contribution has evolved in this United Nations mandated, North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) led effort of 37 NATO and non-NATO countries. Canada’s special government website, titled “Canada’s Engagement in Afghanistan” indicates primary priorities are to help establish a secure environment, provide humanitarian assistance, and build Afghanistan’s institutions to support democratic processes and foster a sustainable peace. Rick Casson, M.P., Lethbridge, will discuss Canada’s progress toward these goals as well as implications to Canadians - in particular the impacts on Canadians serving in Afghanistan.

Speaker: Rick Casson,

Mr. Casson has been the Member of Parliament for the Lethbridge riding since 1997 when he was first elected as an Opposition MP. He was sworn in as a Member of the Government of Canada following the January 2006 election and for a second time following the 2008 election.
Mr. Casson is Chair of the Special Committee on the Canadian Mission in Afghanistan. He has twice traveled to Afghanistan – in January 2007 and May 2008 on a Canadian Forces fact-finding mission related to his previous position as Chair of Canada’s Standing Committee on National Defence. He is also the Canadian Co-Chair of the Permanent Joint Board on Defence; a Canadian-American advisory body established in 1940, by PM Mackenzie King and US President F.D. Roosevelt. In addition he is Chair of the Alberta Caucus.
Raised in Southern Alberta, Rick credits 20 years of municipal government involvement as his initial training ground for federal politics. First elected to grassroots government in 1977, he served as a Picture Butte town councilor for nine years and mayor of the municipality for nine more years.

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