Author Topic: Taliban captures Canadian national in Ghazni in 2010, released 2016  (Read 25171 times)

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NOTE:  As of this post, there's been no mainstream media confirmation of this incident.  I first spotted this when ISAF public affairs shared this via Twitter post ~0730E/1230UTC.  The ISAF Twitter post links to this from Iranian media , which has had some.... reliability issues in the past).

This from the Taliban's web site (usual caveats about clicking on the link):
Quote
Mackenzie Rutherford Colin, a Canadian national, living in 166 Street, Toronto City, Canada has gotten captured in Ghazni City, the capital of the province of the same name.  He has been involved in some clandestine activities to get some fugitive information especially to learn about whereabouts of the Mujahideen, according to the admission of suspect.  Mujahideen gotten some documents out of the suspect describing him as a secrete agent.
You can click here to see a screen capture of the statement at a non-terrorist site (Scribd.com).

- mod edit to update thread title with conclusion -
« Last Edit: January 11, 2016, 14:51:27 by milnews.ca »
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Re: Taliban alleges "Canadian national" captured in Ghazni?
« Reply #1 on: February 27, 2011, 09:41:43 »
Not found in Canada 411. I'm sure CSIS would be interested in this.
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Re: Taliban alleges "Canadian national" captured in Ghazni?
« Reply #2 on: February 27, 2011, 14:58:46 »
This story from the National Post website is reproduced under the Fair Dealings provisions of the Copyright Act:

 Sunday, Feb. 27, 2011

Canadian Foreign Affairs officials confirmed Sunday that a Canadian tourist has gone missing in Afghanistan, after the Taliban issued a statement claiming that it had captured a Canadian “spy” in the eastern province of Ghazni.

The tourist is a Canadian citizen named Colin Rutherford, said Emmanuelle Lamoureux of Foreign Affairs.

“Canadian officials are working with Afghan authorities to assist the family in securing the safe release of their loved one,” she said in an emailed response to questions.

In a statement posted on what purports to be a website of the Taliban, the insurgents claim they have captured a Canadian named “Mackenzie Rutherford Colin” in Ghazni city, the province’s capital.

“He has been involved in some clandestine activities to get some fugitive information, especially to learn about whereabouts of the Mujahideen, according to admission of suspect,” the statement said. “Mujahideen gotten some documents out of the suspect describing him as a secret agent.”

Mujahideen – or holy warrior - is the term used by the Taliban for insurgent fighters.

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Re: Taliban alleges "Canadian national" captured in Ghazni?
« Reply #3 on: February 27, 2011, 15:03:33 »
Who the heck goes to Afghanistan as a tourist?

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Re: Taliban alleges "Canadian national" captured in Ghazni?
« Reply #4 on: February 27, 2011, 15:15:23 »
Not found in Canada 411. I'm sure CSIS would be interested in this.
As we can see from Old Sweat's post, the Taliban are not good at keeping Western names in the right order.
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Re: Taliban alleges "Canadian national" captured in Ghazni?
« Reply #5 on: February 27, 2011, 15:25:07 »
Who the heck goes to Afghanistan as a tourist?

Maybe the same kind of people who take hiking vacations in Iraq and wander into Iran?

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Re: Taliban alleges "Canadian national" captured in Ghazni?
« Reply #6 on: February 27, 2011, 15:41:03 »
Same general details confirmed by the Canadian Press and CTV.ca.

Here's DFAIT's assessment of how safe (NOT) it is to travel to AFG these days:
Quote
Foreign Affairs and International Trade Canada advises against all travel to Afghanistan. Canadians undertaking travel despite this warning take serious risks. Canadians already in Afghanistan should leave. The security situation remains extremely volatile and unpredictable.

Terrorism is a continuous threat throughout Afghanistan. The threat to foreign nationals, including Canadians, from terrorist and criminal violence is extremely high. Numerous attacks have occurred in reputable public areas, as well as against Afghan and international institutions. Targets have included hotels, embassies, and government buildings; however, no location can be considered exempt from risk. Canadians should be particularly vigilant in the lead-up to and on days of national significance. Suicide bombs, rockets, improvised explosive devices, armed assaults, and ambushes are among the tactics used in these attacks. Overland travel outside Kabul is extremely dangerous, and is restricted by the Afghan government only to those with armed security. Several security incidents have occurred on the highway between Kabul and Kandahar. Bogus checkpoints may be set up in order to commit attacks. Extreme caution should always be exercised, particularly in public areas frequented by foreigners (hotels, restaurants, shops, and marketplaces) ....
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Re: Taliban alleges "Canadian national" captured in Ghazni?
« Reply #7 on: February 27, 2011, 15:44:59 »
Should create a new category for the Darwin Awards:

Tourism in a War Zone
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Re: Taliban alleges "Canadian national" captured in Ghazni?
« Reply #8 on: February 27, 2011, 16:30:39 »
People go there for work or just to find out what's going on. Here are some posts, thought it might be the same guy but not.

http://canada-afghanistan.blogspot.com/

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Re: Taliban alleges "Canadian national" captured in Ghazni?
« Reply #9 on: February 27, 2011, 18:58:42 »
A bit more detail from AFP:
Quote
.... In a statement published Sunday on an Internet site, a Taliban group said it had captured a Canadian citizen in the province of Ghazni, accusing him of being a spy sent to discover the insurgent group's hideouts.  A Taliban spokesman, identified as Zabihullah, said in the statement that the group planned to publish a video of the hostage. 
He also said contact had been made with an "official delegation" from the Canadian government, but had received "no positive" reply to its demands ....
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Re: Taliban alleges "Canadian national" captured in Ghazni?
« Reply #10 on: February 27, 2011, 19:07:19 »
I am going to guess it is going to be a memorable week for someone.
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A few more details....
« Reply #11 on: February 28, 2011, 06:55:48 »
... from the Globe & Mail....
Quote
Three months after a 27-year-old Canadian traveller disappeared in Afghanistan, the Taliban say they have captured the man and have accused him of being a foreign spy.
After the Taliban released the man’s name Sunday, a spokeswoman for the Department of Foreign Affairs in Ottawa confirmed that “Colin Rutherford, a Canadian citizen, is missing in Afghanistan after travelling to the country as a tourist.”  "He was seeking to learn Pashto during his travels," a Foreign Affairs spokesman said without providing further details …. One friend, who wishes to remain anonymous, said Mr. Rutherford is just a globe-trotting former University of Toronto student with a yen for exotic countries.
“He’s a sweet person with good intentions,” said the friend, adding that Mr. Rutherford was never vocal about his political views.  It wasn’t clear why the Taliban made the announcement Sunday. The Taliban also called Afghan journalists in Kandahar to trumpet the news.  The friend said the RCMP had been investigating Mr. Rutherford’s disappearance as early as November ….

.... and the National Post/Postmedia News:
Quote
A young Canadian traveller who reportedly visited one of the most perilous corners of Afghanistan to learn Pashto, the native tongue of the Taliban, has gone missing, with the insurgents claiming they have captured a Canadian “secret agent” by the same name …. One version of the insurgents’ communiqué, translated by the SITE Intelligence Group, said that they planned to release a video of the hostage soon, and had already made unspecified demands for his release to the Canadian government …. When asked about the claims he was spying, another department official, Claude Rochon, said later only that Mr. Rutherford was in the country to learn Pashto …. A woman who answered the phone at a home belonging to a family member of the missing man offered a polite “no comment” when asked about Mr. Rutherford ….

edited to add:  If you want to check out the Arabic and Pashto versions of the original Taliban statement, check here.
« Last Edit: February 28, 2011, 07:21:56 by milnews.ca »
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Re: Taliban alleges "Canadian national" captured in Ghazni?
« Reply #12 on: February 28, 2011, 08:40:35 »
Two Comments posted at the National Post and a probably hint as to how this story will go.:

1. Michael: What a wasted trip.  This fool could have learned pashto at his local convenience store or at a Pioneer gas station.

2. Damned Harper. Sending these Canadian spies all around the world, It's just a plot, you know, to keep Canadian soldiers in Afghanistan after July, since now they will have to mount an offensive to rescue Mr. Rutherford. No, wait, maybe Rutherford is a member of the Liberal youth wing, planted by Ignatieff just to embarrass Harper. I can't wait for question period today. You want to bet that the Liberals, NDP, and Bloc won't be united in their cries that the Conservatives are not doing enough to save this young man's butt? I'm betting they will - 2 to 1 odds.

    Micheal, I like your advice. Multicultural Canadians certainly don't have to travel far to learn a foreign language - just visit your local ethnic ghetto of choice.
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Re: Taliban alleges "Canadian national" captured in Ghazni?
« Reply #13 on: February 28, 2011, 10:38:45 »
.... I can't wait for question period today. You want to bet that the Liberals, NDP, and Bloc won't be united in their cries that the Conservatives are not doing enough to save this young man's butt? I'm betting they will - 2 to 1 odds ....
I'd be surprised if it DIDN'T come up in QP.

Meanwhile, some tidbits via CBC.ca:
Quote
.... "This morning, through an interpreter, CBC contacted a Taliban spokesperson who claims they have taken Rutherford because he was working as a spy and tracking down Taliban fighters," CBC's Peter Akman said Monday.  The Taliban claim to have confiscated some documents from the Ontario man that they say prove he was working as a secret agent, Akman said.  "The Taliban say Rutherford is being kept somewhere safe and it's expected they'll soon release a video of him," Akman (said) ..... The police chief in Ghazni province confirmed that Rutherford was living in the region for almost a month and that he was seen dressed in local clothing several times ....
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Re: Taliban alleges "Canadian national" captured in Ghazni?
« Reply #14 on: March 01, 2011, 12:11:17 »
.... I can't wait for question period today. You want to bet that the Liberals, NDP, and Bloc won't be united in their cries that the Conservatives are not doing enough to save this young man's butt? I'm betting they will - 2 to 1 odds.
I'd be surprised if it DIDN'T come up in QP.
I have to stand corrected on this one - the only strictly Afghanistan issue that came up yesterday, apart from a few mentions of Afghanistan here and there as part of other questions, was an NDP petition calling for the troops to GTFO Afghanistan.
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Re: Taliban alleges "Canadian national" captured in Ghazni?
« Reply #15 on: March 08, 2011, 06:06:32 »
Via Afghan media:
Quote
Taliban militants on Monday said they had offered to free a Canadian citizen held hostage for two months in return for the release of several of their captured comrades...-PAJHWOK REPORT
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Re: Taliban alleges "Canadian national" captured in Ghazni?
« Reply #16 on: March 08, 2011, 07:42:17 »

Via Afghan media:
Quote
Taliban militants on Monday said they had offered to free a Canadian citizen held hostage for two months in return for the release of several of their captured comrades...-PAJHWOK REPORT


Well.  If these guys were being held as "Suspected" Taliban, I guess this only confirms that they really are. 

This story confirms a several things to me.  I have my opinion of a certain university reinforced.  My opinion that there are still many dangerous places with evil people still exist is acknowledged.  My opinion that it is much too soon to contemplate visiting this Region as a tourist or job seeker, is confirmed.  I have my opinion that there really are people worthy of the Darwin Awards confirmed.       
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Re: Taliban alleges "Canadian national" captured in Ghazni?
« Reply #17 on: March 10, 2011, 09:44:43 »
My opinion that there are still many dangerous places with evil people still exist is acknowledged.  My opinion that it is much too soon to contemplate visiting this Region as a tourist or job seeker, is confirmed.

It seems even some of this man's buddies now get it - this from an American friend who worries, and hopes for the best:
Quote
Spring break starts soon. Most of us cannot wait to take a break from school, and perhaps travel or take advantage of the beautiful weather Savannah has been enjoying.

But a pall has been thrown over my semester. On Feb. 27, I found out that the Taliban was holding a good friend of mine, Colin Rutherford, captive. He isn't military. He is a Canadian who went to Afghanistan in hopes of learning about the culture and peoples of Afghanistan firsthand. He went not only to learn, but also as a humanitarian.

According to his captors, Colin is a spy. They claim he has admitted to being a spy, and that they have found evidence of such activity in his belongings. They also admitted to having interrogated him over the last three months that they have held him. What would most of us admit to in that time, under those conditions?

Every day since the Taliban admitted to being behind his disappearance, I have combed the news hoping to see something positive. The family is not at liberty to discuss what is currently happening behind the scenes, at the behest of the Canadian government, to anyone.

Since I got the news, I have not been able to eat or sleep well. Nightmares plague me, and both my school and work performance have been greatly affected in a negative way. I feel like a cast member in a real-life horror movie. I never dreamed that a non-combatant friend of mine would ever be in such a situation.

We as students need to recognize that terrorism does not only happen to other people. Terrorists exist to cause fear, and through that fear they gain power. Colin was not afraid to go into a place that has been torn by war to try to help people who are different from himself, and to help them on their terms instead of his. It may not have been the brightest thing to do, but it was brave and motivated by a good heart.

He may not come home alive or, if alive, not whole and sound. I pray every day for him. I hope I will get to see him again and hug him and tell him that I am proud of him for wanting to bring something positive into a bastion of terror.
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Taliban releases video
« Reply #18 on: May 10, 2011, 11:42:12 »
Usual caveats re: linking to Taliban sites and accuracy of information - will share non-terrorist links when available:
Remarks of Islamic Emirate’s Spokesman regarding Canadian detainee’s (Colin McKenzie Rutherford) vid(eo)
Sunday, 08 May 2011 18:05 -
Quote
Remarks of Islamic Emirate’s Spokesman regarding Canadian detainee’s (Colin McKenzie Rutherford) video and case

A few months earlier, Mujahideen of Islamic Emirate captured a Canadian national, a resident of Toronto city and an agent of this country’s spy agency (Colin McKenzie Rutherford) in Ghazni province.

The mentioned person came under Mujahideen surveillance before his capture because of his suspicious actions. The documents seized and investigations carried out after his arrest showed that he had entered the country while working for a spy agency and had been working as an active spy for a long time, gathering intelligence information about Mujahideen.

Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan, through an earlier released statement asked the Canadian government to accept the terms laid out by Islamic Emirate in order to solve this case and once again re-iterates itself to the Canadian government to take urgent steps to solve this case or this detainee could face a trial. The video of the detainee has been released as promised by Islamic Emirate, which can be viewed at the following link.

www.alemarah-iea.net/1111.wmv

Spokesman of Islamic Emirate

Zabihullah Mujahid

08/05/2011
Article link here.
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Re: Taliban alleges "Canadian national" captured in Ghazni?
« Reply #19 on: May 10, 2011, 16:38:41 »
Video now downloadable from non-terrorist source (2:30 in length, 3.8MB) here.
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Re: Taliban alleges "Canadian national" captured in Ghazni?
« Reply #20 on: May 10, 2011, 17:10:52 »
This case makes me sad.  Adventurous young Canadian learning some tough lessons... But what makes me even more sad, is looking around at the Canadian blogsphere, and witnessing how quickly some Canadians are willing to believe the Taliban and label this kid a spy.

The only thing we can really do is advise our loved ones to never set foot over there, at least not without understanding the very significant risks involved.

I sincerely hope that Mr Rutherford makes it out ok.
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Re: Taliban alleges "Canadian national" captured in Ghazni?
« Reply #21 on: May 10, 2011, 18:26:27 »
Poor kid. Thats the problem with the youth, they have a open mind and think well of the world. I'm sure he thought the people there would treat him well as his intentions were good. Hard way to learn a lesson. I honestly have huge respect for reporters who go out there alone and try to get the stories,  I wouldnt have the parts....but going in alone with a vague story of studying culture....not the best idea I've heard.

I done enough travelling in the country. Without a ton of buddies and a ton of weapons...I won't be going back.

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Re: Taliban alleges "Canadian national" captured in Ghazni?
« Reply #22 on: May 10, 2011, 19:41:49 »
Poor kid. Thats the problem with the youth, they have a open mind and think well of the world. I'm sure he thought the people there would treat him well as his intentions were good. Hard way to learn a lesson. I honestly have huge respect for reporters who go out there alone and try to get the stories,  I wouldnt have the parts....but going in alone with a vague story of studying culture....not the best idea I've heard.

I done enough travelling in the country. Without a ton of buddies and a ton of weapons...I won't be going back.

I think rather, that is the problem with the world, it is dangerous and unreceptive to the open minded.  I can't fault the young for being open minded and thinking well of the world, although they do need to be prevented from getting into situations like this. 


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Latest from the House of Commons: Not much
« Reply #23 on: June 22, 2011, 06:24:09 »
This from Oral Questions yesterday:
Quote
Hon. Jim Karygiannis (Scarborough—Agincourt, Lib.):  Mr. Speaker, on November 4 last year, a young Canadian, Colin Rutherford, was kidnapped in Afghanistan and accused of being a spy.  His kidnappers have contacted Canadian officials with their demands. His family has not been told what the demands are. Once again, a Canadian overseas needs the help of the government.  Other than lip service, what have the Minister of Foreign Affairs and his officials done to secure the release and safe return of Colin Rutherford to Canada?

Mr. Deepak Obhrai (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Foreign Affairs, CPC):  Mr. Speaker, the government is aware of this case.  Due to security and privacy concerns, it would be absolutely inappropriate for us to comment on this case.
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Re: Taliban alleges "Canadian national" captured in Ghazni?
« Reply #24 on: June 22, 2011, 06:36:33 »
Perhaps he found it too embarrassing to say that DFAIT was changing the font on their website so that the WARNING on travel to Afghanistan was in in a flashing florescent red 72 pt Times New Roman font, making it stand out more for young Canadians to read.
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Re: Taliban alleges "Canadian national" captured in Ghazni?
« Reply #25 on: June 22, 2011, 07:13:17 »
Perhaps he found it too embarrassing to say that DFAIT was changing the font on their website so that the WARNING on travel to Afghanistan was in in a flashing florescent red 72 pt Times New Roman font, making it stand out more for young Canadians to read.
Those that choose to check in the first place, anyway.
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Re: Taliban alleges "Canadian national" captured in Ghazni?
« Reply #26 on: July 08, 2011, 21:30:35 »
Canada's still on the case:
Quote
A Scarborough woman whose son is being held in Afghanistan by kidnappers is "sick with worry" and "can't get a straight answer" from the federal government on how they will get her son home, local Liberal MP Jim Karygiannis says …. Media reports have said Rutherford's kidnappers sent demands to Canada's government, but Karygiannis, his mother's MP in Scarborough-Agincourt, said she has not been told what the demands are and his own inquiries about the case have gone unanswered.  Karygiannis confirmed Rutherford's mother does not want to speak to reporters, but in a release this week the Liberal MP quotes the woman as saying the federal government told her "due to privacy issues, they cannot discuss the case."  A spokesperson for Foreign Affairs Canada, which advises Canadians against all travel to Afghanistan, confirmed Rutherford, "after travelling to the country as a tourist," is missing there.  "Canadian officials are working with Afghan authorities to assist the family in securing the safe release of their loved one," Priya Sinha added on Wednesday. "We ask that the media respect the privacy of the family."
Source:  insidetoront.com, 8 Jul 11
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Re: Taliban alleges "Canadian national" captured in Ghazni?
« Reply #27 on: December 22, 2011, 07:43:12 »
A bump with the latest:
Quote
The family of a Toronto man who was kidnapped by the Taliban in Afghanistan last year is trying to bring him home by reaching out to his captors themselves.

Brian Rutherford, whose brother Colin was taken hostage during a vacation to Afghanistan in November 2010, told CBC News his family hopes to get in touch with his captors to find a solution. They have set up two phone lines, one for Canada and one in Afghanistan, and an email address for this purpose.

“We want to talk to the people that have him,” he told the CBC’s John Lancaster. “We want them to get in contact with us so we can work something out."

Rutherford's mother, Wendy, said she understands the Canadian government has done all it can and, now, it’s up to the family.

“My goal is to bring Colin home,” she said.

(....)

Since then, there have been no demands or ransoms made by Rutherford’s abductors. But in May, the Taliban released a video of Colin (downloadable from non-jihadi site), then 26 years old, giving brief answers to a man off-screen.

(....)

The department of foreign affairs would not comment on the specifics of Rutherford’s situation, but said it was "concerned" about his case.

"We are very limited in what we can say as we will not compromise the safety of any Canadian hostage," a spokesman said in an emailed statement. "We're obviously tremendously concerned about such cases. We are monitoring the situation and maintain contact with the family. Our thoughts are with them at this difficult time."

But the opposition’s associate foreign affairs critic, NDP MP Jinny Sims, is urging Ottawa to push harder for Rutherford’s release.

“We have had a significant presence in Afghanistan, and I think we have an incredible amount of contacts that could be used to locate this young man,” she told CBC News ....
CBC.ca, 22 Dec 11
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Re: Taliban alleges "Canadian national" captured in Ghazni?
« Reply #28 on: December 22, 2011, 07:59:00 »
Quote
But the opposition’s associate foreign affairs critic, NDP MP Jinny Sims, is urging Ottawa to push harder for Rutherford’s release.

Really? I do wish they wouldn't spout this bull....they are not doing the family any favors, just their reelection chances......
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Re: Taliban alleges "Canadian national" captured in Ghazni?
« Reply #29 on: December 22, 2011, 08:09:44 »
Really? I do wish they wouldn't spout this bull....they are not doing the family any favors, just their reelection chances......
What's interesting is how differently THEY would do things if they were in power, knowing more about the bigger picture than they do now.  Then again, that could be scary, too....
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Re: Taliban alleges "Canadian national" captured in Ghazni?
« Reply #30 on: December 22, 2011, 09:07:47 »
There's nothing in the article to suggest that the Government is not vigorously, but quietly working through intermediaries to get this guy released.
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Re: Taliban alleges "Canadian national" captured in Ghazni?
« Reply #31 on: December 22, 2011, 09:32:27 »
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We have had a significant presence in Afghanistan

How convenient for the NDP........

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Re: Taliban alleges "Canadian national" captured in Ghazni?
« Reply #32 on: December 22, 2011, 10:16:57 »
Quote
Brian Rutherford, whose brother Colin was taken hostage during a vacation to Afghanistan in November 2010,

Because you're an idiot.  Good job Colin.

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Re: Taliban alleges "Canadian national" captured in Ghazni?
« Reply #33 on: December 22, 2011, 13:54:51 »
I think he is going to exceed his wanted knowledge of the culture and people of this majestic region of the world.

Maybe he will get to see some historic sites previously unexplored by westerners. Experience things like Chai boy nights, women beating and killing, sharia law, inbreeding, total intolerance for anything outside their compound walls, more inbreeding, Allah, some more Allah, and all the great things that make Afghanistan a wonderful tourist destination.

This is the best example of the good idea fairy leading people into bad situations I've seen in a long time.

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Re: Taliban alleges "Canadian national" captured in Ghazni?
« Reply #34 on: December 22, 2011, 23:52:55 »
How convenient for the NDP........

Exactly, and because they cried and complained about casualties we don't have a strong combat presence anymore. They want their cake and to eat it too.

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Re: Taliban alleges "Canadian national" captured in Ghazni?
« Reply #35 on: December 23, 2011, 00:32:41 »
Exactly, and because they cried and complained about casualties we don't have a strong combat presence anymore. They want their cake and to eat it too.

Actually, they want to eat their cake and have it. Anyone can have a piece of cake and subsequently eat it. The trick is to eat the cake and still have it left.
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Re: Taliban alleges "Canadian national" captured in Ghazni?
« Reply #36 on: June 12, 2015, 06:01:52 »
Bumped with the latest, shared under the Fair Dealing provisions of the Copyright Act (R.S.C., 1985, c. C-42) - highlights mine (with copy of his statement also attached) ....

"Special Forces officer: American hostages held overseas ‘failed’ by U.S. government"
Dan Lamothe, Washington Post, June 11 at 10:37 AM

Washington’s effort to recover American hostages held overseas is “dysfunctional” and mired in failures hidden by bureaucracy, an Army Special Forces officer once involved in the Pentagon’s part of the mission told the Senate on Thursday during a hearing for whistleblowers.

Lt. Col. Jason Amerine testified that he started working on hostage policy at the Pentagon in early 2013. At some point, he became frustrated with the inaction to free Americans and said he took his concerns to Rep. Duncan D. Hunter (R-Calif.), a member of the House Armed Services Committee, after exhausting all other options. The Army, when it learned about his discussions on Capitol Hill, responded by removing him from his job, suspending his security clearance and launching a criminal investigation into his actions, Amerine said.

“My team had a difficult mission and I used all legal means available to recover the hostages,” Amerine said in prepared testimony. “You, the Congress, were my last resort. But now I am labeled a whistleblower, a term both radioactive and derogatory. I am before you because I did my duty, and you need to ensure all in uniform can go on doing their duty without fear of reprisal.”

Amerine testified before the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee during a hearing called “Blowing the Whistle on Retaliation: Accounts of Current and Former Federal Agency Whistleblowers.” He first acknowledged facing an Army investigation and communicating his concerns about U.S. hostage policy to Hunter in a Facebook post on May 15.

The case pits one of the first heroes of the Afghanistan War against the Army. Amerine led a Special Forces team there in 2001 that protected future Afghan President Hamid Karzai. Amerine was wounded by an errant American bomb on Dec. 5, 2001, that killed three other Special Forces soldiers. He later received the Bronze Star with “V” and the Purple Heart, and was labeled by the Army as a “Real Hero” in the 2006 version of its popular video game, “America’s Army.”

The Army Criminal Investigation Command (CID) has disputed that it is investigating Amerine as an act of reprisal, and declined to say whether the soldier is under investigation at all. A spokesman for CID, Chris Grey, declined to comment Thursday on Amerine’s testimony.

Amerine told the Senate that in 2013, his office at the Pentagon was asked to help recover Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl, the U.S. soldier held captive for five years overseas and charged earlier this year with desertion. He was later recovered May 31, 2014, in a controversial swap for five Taliban officials.

“We audited the recovery effort and determined that the reason the effort failed for four years was because our nation lacked an organization that can synchronize the efforts of all our government agencies to get our hostages home,” Amerine said. “We also realized that there were civilian hostages in Pakistan that nobody was trying to free, so we added them to our mission.”

Amerine’s team worked to develop a viable trade for Bergdahl, bring the Taliban to the negotiating table and fix the interagency recovery efforts, he said. He “used all legal means” available to recover the hostages, and then went to Congress when he ran out of other options, he said. That prompted the FBI to complain that he was sharing classified information, he said. The Defense Department inspector general later determined he did not, he added.

Amerine credited the Defense Department inspector general with handling a reprisal complaint he filed well. The FBI has previously declined to comment on Amerine’s allegations.

Amerine credited Hunter with influencing the Pentagon to appoint Michael D. Lumpkin, a retired Navy SEAL and current deputy undersecretary of defense, as the Defense Department’s hostage recovery coordinator. Doing so allowed the Pentagon to respond quickly when a deal was struck to recover Bergdahl in exchange for five Taliban officials, Amerine said.

But the other civilians held hostage — including Warren Weinstein, who was accidentally killed in a U.S. drone strike in January — were left behind, Amerine said. One of the options Amerine’s team developed would have swapped seven Westerners for one Taliban drug trafficker and warlord: Haji Bashir Noorzai. He was convicted of drug trafficking and sentenced to life in prison after being lured to the United States in 2005.

Amerine told the Senate that the trade developed would have freed Bergdahl, Weinstein, Canadian Colin Rutherford and a family of three: Canadian Joshua Boyle, his American wife Caitlan Coleman, and their child born in captivity. He declined to identify the seventh hostage.


It’s unclear how the Noorzai swap would have worked. Bergdahl was held by insurgents affiliated with the Taliban, while Weinstein was held captive by al-Qaeda.

“Is the system broken?” Amerine asked. “Layers upon layers of bureaucracy hid the extent of our failure from our leaders. I believe we all failed the commander in chief by not getting critical advice to him. I believe we all failed the secretary of defense, who likely never knew the extent of the interagency dysfunction that was our recovery effort.”

Hunter said on the House floor last month that Amerine was critical in providing information that helped craft a congressional amendment that would require President Obama to appoint a specific federal official to oversee all hostage recovery efforts.

“Lieutenant Colonel Jason Amerine has worked with my office now for about two years on this amendment, and he is someone that really cares,” Hunter said. “He’s been working hostage stuff with about every government agency that there is, and he played a big role in getting this to where it’s at now.”

Amerine said he “failed” Weinstein and the four other Western hostages still in captivity.

“We must not forget: Warren Weinstein is dead while Colin Rutherford, Josh Boyle, Caitlin Coleman and her child remain hostages,” Amerine said. “Who’s fighting for them?”


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He's been freed
« Reply #37 on: January 11, 2016, 14:44:04 »
~1800 days later ...
Quote
A Canadian man captured by the Taliban in 2010 has been freed.

Colin Rutherford was on a private vacation in Afghanistan when he was seized by the militant group in November of that year.

The last indication the Toronto man's family had that he was alive came in a 2011 video released by insurgents where he answered questions; an accompanying email accused Rutherford, then 26, of being a spy.

In the video, Rutherford insisted he was not a spy and had travelled to Afghanistan to study historical sites, old buildings and shrines.

Foreign Affairs Minister Stephane Dion announced Rutherford's release in a brief statement, but did not explain what steps were taken to secure his freedom ...
A tiny bit more from the Foreign Affairs Minister:
Quote
“Canada is very pleased that efforts undertaken to secure the release of Colin Rutherford from captivity have been successful.

“We look forward to Mr. Rutherford being able to return to Canada and reunite with his family and loved ones.”

“The Government of Canada will continue to provide Mr. Rutherford with consular assistance and will assist in facilitating his safe return home.‎

“As minister of foreign affairs, I extend my heartfelt thanks to the Government of Qatar for its assistance in this matter.‎”
« Last Edit: January 11, 2016, 14:51:08 by milnews.ca »
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Re: Taliban captures Canadian national in Ghazni in 2010, released 2016
« Reply #38 on: January 11, 2016, 15:49:37 »
What a dummy. I'm glad no CAF members lives were put in danger trying to rescue him.
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Re: Taliban captures Canadian national in Ghazni in 2010, released 2016
« Reply #39 on: January 11, 2016, 18:01:55 »
I'm sure any post-release debrief will focus strongly on potential radicalization while he was a guest of the Taliban.
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Re: Taliban captures Canadian national in Ghazni in 2010, released 2016
« Reply #40 on: January 12, 2016, 14:40:14 »
I will only begin to worry when he gets nominated to run as a Liberal

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Re: Taliban captures Canadian national in Ghazni in 2010, released 2016
« Reply #41 on: January 12, 2016, 16:02:36 »
I will only begin to worry when he gets nominated to run as a Liberal

I won't, for the sole reason that it means that he won't be nominated as a Conservative.
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Re: Taliban captures Canadian national in Ghazni in 2010, released 2016
« Reply #42 on: January 12, 2016, 18:41:01 »
What a dummy. I'm glad no CAF members lives were put in danger trying to rescue him.
That we know of ...

Meanwhile, the Taliban's take (also attached if you don't want to link to a Taliban web page):
Quote
Remarks by spokesman of Islamic Emirate regarding freeing of a Canadian national

A Canadian national, Colin Rutherford, who was detained by the Mujahideen of Islamic Emirate some 5 years earlier in the province of Ghazni was freed on Monday 11/01/2016 on grounds of humanitarian sympathy and sublime Islamic ethics with the intermediation by the Islamic country of Qatar and in accordance with the instructions of the leader of the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan.
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