My first thought learning about the attack on Canadians in Afghanistan was to salute the courage of our wounded men, and recognize the ultimate sacrifice of our diplomat.
Best wishes for a full and speedy recovery to Private Salikin, Corporal Bailey and Master Corporal Franklin. I honour their individual sacrifices in the line of duty.
Heartfelt condolences to the family and friends of Glyn Berry. He was, by all accounts, a man of deep conviction and integrity, a diplomat of whom all Canadians could be proud.
Mr. Berry knew that after nearly three decades in the foreign service, he could have had a much cushier overseas posting or a sleepy assignment back in Ottawa. But there was no place in the world Mr. Berry wanted to be more than with Canadian troops in southeastern Afghanistan.
Mr. Berry was an ardent supporter of Canada's difficult mission there. He had volunteered for a one-year tour with the Canadian Forces' Provincial Reconstruction Team in Kandahar because he firmly believed Canada could make a difference in the lives of the people there.
"I talked about it with my wife and we agreed that I would never be able to live with myself if I didn't do this because it is so important and so interesting," he said in a curious accent that recalled his British roots.
My second thought was how MCpl Franklin is one of those 'Soldiers. In our cities. In Canada.' that were so shamefully disparaged by the politicians that currently form their government.
With part of his leg blown off, Master Cpl. Paul Franklin wrapped a tourniquet around his thigh, then went to help three other wounded passengers after a suicide bomber destroyed the military vehicle he was driving.
"He's a medic, so he had the wherewithal to do that," Audra Franklin said from her home in Edmonton, proudly describing her husband's heroic actions yesterday in Kandahar.
Canadians in uniform and out of it are doing dangerous work on our behalf around the world. In Haiti. In the Balkans. In Afghanistan. We should support them wherever that important work takes them.