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Letter: Canada’s failure to aid Afghan interpreters a national disgrace

Non-profits working against the clock to save Afghan interpreters and their families can use our support
Afghan War Vet Jared Reynolds
Jared Reynolds stands in front of the flag of Afghanistan. The North Vancouver resident was a corporal with the Canadian Army Reserves deployed to Afghanistan as part of a protection force for crucial supplies in 2009-2010.

Dear Editor:

Re: Afghan Vet Says Canada Failed to Protect Interpreters, Nov. 10 front-page story.

I spent the first year and a half of my life on a Canadian Air Force base, during the dying days of the Second World War.

When I was born, my dad’s only sibling and Anne Frank were still alive. By year’s end, they were both dead.

And I grew up wanting to know why. So I read.

We were the good guys, right? Then I learned how “we” turned away the MS St. Louis, a Jewish refugee ship in 1939.

And in November 2018, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau apologized for our role in that event.

I always understood an apology meant nothing, if one didn’t learn from their mistake.

And yet, here we are 75 years on, again looking away.

Both my father and uncle enlisted and served in the Royal Canadian Air Force in the Second World War.

As a result of their sacrifice and that of hundreds of thousands of other Canadians, we have all had the privilege of living in a free nation.

As we honoured those who served and sacrificed for our freedoms on Nov. 11,  I wondered what those Second World War vets would think about a Canada that promised sanctuary to Afghans who helped our military, and then we left them behind.

There have been umpteen stories reporting on our national disgrace. Not for lack of credible journalism has the alarm been raised and seemingly ignored.
With the exception of Liberal MP Marcus Polowski (Thunder Bay), our government has been AWOL on this file.

Are we afraid a bad apple might slip through the net? When has that stopped us? Think Nazis. 

But we don’t stop doing the right thing because we are afraid we might make a mistake. 

When did we stop being brave? When did we stop being honourable?

Partner organizations of Canadian Veterans, Veterans Transition Network and Aman Lara are working against the clock to save these individuals and their families.

Please consider donating to their efforts.

C.A. Jackson
West Vancouver

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