So, you still support the mission?
"I've made no secret of it, I strongly support the mission and I strongly support the troops. I don't like the fact that he opposition continues to attack the mission while the troops are in the field. That's not fair. But, when we will get to 2009 we have to present to Parliament some options and we are going to need, obviously, some support from the opposition parties if we want to start a new mission after 2009. We need that support, we need the public, and the Parliament behind men and women when we send them into dangerous missions. No, I don't believe it is a change, I think it's only dawning on everyone."
There are serious problems with this mission, and it is the duty of the opposition to highlight them and press the government. Speaking of fairness, it is fair for the government to always paint the most rosy of pictures? If you limit yourself to government commentary, you would be under the impression that Afghanistan is a complete success story. Is that a "fair" representation to sell to the Canadian people?
What is particularly offensive, Harper equates criticism with undermining the troops. If that is true, then Canadians don't support the troops, because a majority don't believe the mission will achieve the objectives. Harper offers a copout defense, which masks his own inability to "sell" the mission to Canadians. Criticism is a given in our system, success or failure depends on the response. Is it the opposition's fault that a one day story on torture turned into a maelstorm because of the Conservative government baffling incompetence and conflicting signals?
Harper's whining about "fairness" is a sorry attempt to shift responsibility and play wedge politics. Should we expect anything less?