Canada’s military prowess vastly underestimated

Froma Harrop’s statement (The Maui News, April 14) that “Canada can hardly defend” itself caught my eye. As usual, Canada’s military achievements in world affairs are largely ignored.

Perhaps I could try to set the record straight, having served in the Royal Canadian Air Force and having knowledge of our military:

* War of 1812 – American forces invaded Canada and were defeated by a much smaller Canadian militia.

* World War I – Canadian troops were in France by 1914 and stayed and bled there until 1918. Fifty-five thousand Canadians were killed.

* World War II – Canadians and Americans trained in a special brigade in Alaska, and fought together as allies in Italy. On D-Day, the 1st Canadian Army achieved it objective by reaching farther inland than the British or the Americans. We fought and beat the SS Panzer division.

* Korean War – 5,000 volunteers served in Korea, where a company of 800 men of the Princess Patricia’s Canadian light infantry held the line north of Seoul.

* Afghanistan – 44,000 Canadians were rotated in and out of Kandahar, the birthplace of the Taliban.

Our military colleges are consistently rated in the top 10 in the world. Canada has only 1 percent of the world population but provides 10 percent of dangerous peacekeeping missions authorized by the U.N.

This letter in no way diminishes the role American military has played in world affairs.

Can Canada defend itself? Our world deployment in the defense of freedom says, “I think so.”

Walter Miller

Kihei / Winnipeg, Manitoba