15 October 2006

Two more Canadians pay the price

Turning a brutal feudal theocracy into a democracy is a hard, dangerous job.

Another two Canadian soldiers have paid the ultimate price.

Kandahar, Afghanistan — Two Canadian soldiers were killed Saturday afternoon near the same dangerous road construction project in southern Afghanistan where three other Canadians have lost their lives this month.

Sergeant Darcy Tedford and Private Blake Williamson are both with the 1st battalion of the Royal Canadian Regiment.
They will be remembered.

These latest deaths do not put a halt to the important work our soldiers are doing to assure Afghani citizens freedom of movement.
Brigadier General David Fraser, commander of NATO forces in southern Afghanistan, said the Taliban attacks on the road projects reveals their contempt for average Afghan citizens.

"The Taliban do not like roads, because roads means [sic] freedom of movement, freedom of action, increased security because Afghan security forces can patrol it, people can move more freely," he told reporters.
Canadian troops are bearing the brunt of the fighting along the road. The Afghani army is mostly made up of young, inexperienced and apparently frightened recruits.
In the past week, an auxiliary security force of roughly 80 Afghans has been keeping watch for insurgents creeping around dirt routes used by Canadian armoured vehicles.

The new force, made up mostly of teenagers, has had a shaky start. When Canadian infantry soldiers have checked on them at daybreak, few, if any, are awake. Several times already, gunshots from the auxiliary officers have errantly landed near the Canadians.

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