Canada's Top Soldier Urges Veterans To Honor Afghan Legacy, Not Mire In 'Bitterness'

Canada's Top Soldier Urges Veterans to Honor Afghan Legacy, Not Mire in 'Bitterness'

WASHINGTON (UrduPoint News / Sputnik - 14th July, 2021) Canadian Armed Forces commander Lt.-Gen. Wayne Eyre is urging Afghan war veterans to honor the legacy of the military mission and fallen comrades instead of miring in bitterness and remorse as the Taliban (banned in Russia) appears poised to retake control of Afghanistan.

"Should we hang our heads in bitterness and remorse; or should we continue to venerate the sacrifices of so many in our ranks and their families, to honor the noble commitment to service and making the world a better place, and endeavor to learn from our experience, grow and become better every day? While none of us can speak for them, I have to believe our Fallen would want us to pursue to latter," Eyre said in a letter on Tuesday.

Eyre's letter comes days after the Taliban took control over the Panjwai district in Kandahar province, where the majority of the Canadian military's 158 casualties occurred.

Canada's top soldier acknowledged the current projections, which say the Taliban is on track to reclaim control over Afghanistan after foreign troops complete their withdrawal, saying such a prospect leaves active military personnel and veterans with "much pain and doubt."

Eyre said he recognized that it is difficult to envision Canadian troops being able to observe the fruits of their labor in the succeeding years, as those who served in Europe and Korea did.

Eyre did reassure current service members and veterans that they did everything asked of them by the government.

Canada's acting Chief of Defense staff also pointed out that Canadian soldiers succeeded in giving the Afghan government time to make decisions regarding the long-term future of the country, however, Kabul's decisions were "theirs to make."

The commander urged current and former service members to seek mental support, if needed, including links to the different support resources available.

The United States along with allies, including Canada, invaded Afghanistan ostensibly to destroy the al Qaeda terror group (banned in Russia), which planned the 2001 attacks on New York and Washington from Afghan soil. But the effort morphed into an extended attempt to establish a democracy.

During the intervening years, the Taliban regrouped and gained control of much of the nation in what has become America's longest war. The Canadian military, which was primarily active in Kandahar, exited the campaign in 2014.

The Taliban has been gaining ground in Afghanistan and now controls 85 percent of the country. Pierre Henrot, security consultant and former UN observer, told Sputnik last week that the Afghan government is unlikely to be able to retain control the country after the US departure.

The US troop withdrawal from Afghanistan is more than 95 percent complete, US Central Command said on Tuesday.