Since the 9/11 attack on the United States and the so called War on Terror, Afghanistan has been in our newspapers almost daily. For over five years, Canada’s largest commitment overseas has been in Afghanistan – not just militarily, but also on the foreign aid front. In fact, Afghanistan is the single largest recipient of Canadian bilateral aid with over $600 million allocated from 2001 to 2009.
Despite our 3-D approach to foreign affairs – Diplomacy, Defence and Development – the public knows little about Canada’s development assistance to Afghanistan and how well it is working. Last month, Ted Menzies, the Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of International Cooperation accompanied the minister to Kabul and Kandahar to assess progress.
So how well is our development assistance working in Afghanistan? Is it helping to win hearts and minds? Are we achieving our objectives?
Speaker: Ted Menzies, MP
Ted Menzies is the Member of Parliament for Macleod. He was first elected to the House of Commons in 2004 and served as the opposition critic for both international cooperation and international trade. Upon reelection in 2006, Mr. Menzies was appointed Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of International Cooperation, and in January 2007, was given the additional responsibility of Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of International Trade.
Mr. Menzies came to Parliament with a strong background in agriculture and international trade. He has worked with the Grain Growers of Canada, Western Canadian Wheat Growers, the Canadian Agri-Food Trade Alliance and the federal Agriculture, Food and Beverage Sectoral Advisory Group on International Trade.
Ted Menzies was born in Claresholm where, before being elected to Parliament, he and his wife operated a 5,000 acre farm.
Moderator: Trevor Page Mr. Page is a retired United Nations Director