What might have been (II)

The Globe looks at the concerns within NATO in late 2006.

A memo obtained by The Globe and Mail shows that in 2006 the federal government was briefed on a lobbying campaign by NATO allies aimed at getting the Kabul government to create stronger safeguards for detainees after prisoner abuses elsewhere. “London, The Hague and Canberra [Australia] are deeply concerned about the absence of solid legal protections for detainees, which – in the age of Gitmo and Abu Ghraib – imperils domestic support for the Afghanistan mission,” said the memo of Dec. 4, 2006, written by diplomat Richard Colvin.

The memo was written after consultation with Catherine Bloodworth, a Foreign Affairs colleague, as well as the military attaché in Canada’s Kabul embassy. It was approved by David Sproule – then Canada’s ambassador to Afghanistan – and was e-mailed to dozens of officials at Foreign Affairs, the Privy Council Office and National Defence.