View Full Version : Afghan mission 'successful' but demanding on personnel: Hillier

19 Oct 06,, 05:07
Afghan mission 'successful' but demanding on personnel: Hillier

Last Updated: Wednesday, October 18, 2006 | 7:07 PM ET
CBC News
Canada's top soldier says the country's troops are successfully carrying out their mission in Afghanistan but Gen. Rick Hillier warned the deployment is forcing the military to make use of every asset it has.

The troops are making an important difference in Afghanistan, Hillier, Canada's chief of defence staff, told the House of Commons defence committee in Ottawa on Wednesday.

He said they have been able to make use of intelligence and local information to target key Taliban commanders and protect development projects.

But Hillier added that the demands of the mission are prompting military commanders and defence officials to look for new ways of finding personnel.

He said this included deploying soldiers overseas who were not originally meant to be sent abroad.

"We'll re-role people that are in the training system right now but who are designed to be something else," Hillier told MPs.

"We'll say, 'For the next two or three years, you'll be infantry, and then go back to your primary role.'"

He also said more use would be made of soldiers in the reserve forces.

"We're going to see how many people we can attract to do a longer-term period or else longer contracts and give them all the training."

Canada has 18,000 men and women in the reserves.