That this House (i) recognise that the leadership of the terrorist group known as the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) has called on its members to target Canada and Canadians at home and abroad, (ii) further recognise the clear and direct threat that ISIL poses to the people of the region, including members of vulnerable religious and ethnic minority groups who have been subjected to a sustained campaign of brutal sexual violence, murder, and barbaric intimidation by ISIL, (iii) accept that, unless confronted with strong and direct force, the threat ISIL poses to international peace and security, including to Canadian communities, will continue to grow, (iv) affirm Canada’s desire, consistent with Canadian values and interests, to protect the vulnerable and innocent civilians of the region, including through urgent humanitarian assistance, (v) acknowledge the request from the Government of Iraq for military support against ISIL from members of the international community, including from the Government of Canada, (vi) further acknowledge the participation of Canada’s friends and allies, including numerous countries of the Middle East, in the broad international coalition committed to the fight against ISIL, (vii) note that the United Nations Security Council has become seized of the threat posed by international terrorism with the unanimous passage of United Nations Security Council Resolution 2178, and, accordingly: (a) support the Government’s decision to contribute Canadian military assets to the fight against ISIL, and terrorists allied with ISIL, including air strike capability for a period of up to six months; (b) note that the Government of Canada will not deploy troops in ground combat operations; and (c) continue to offer its resolute and wholehearted support to the brave men and women of the Canadian Armed Forces who stand on guard for all of us.
Elizabeth May: Mr. Speaker, I am very pleased to be able to put a question directly to the Minister of National Defence. I am afraid this debate has been conducted on both sides as though there is an assumption that somehow a combat mission would be effective. We debate what Canada should do, but there is an underlying assumption that it would somehow work to counteract ISIS. There is no evidence for that. Today’s Guardian reports that Kurdish fighters are finding no slowing in ISIS’s assault on Kurdish areas while U.S. air strikes bombard them because they scatter and then reform as the jets leave.
Could the minister of defence give us any evidence whatsoever that Canada’s planned mission would do anything other than fall into the trap ISIS has set for us to get involved in this for its propaganda and ongoing efforts to destabilize and encourage recruitment?
Hon. Rob Nicholson: Mr. Speaker, again, I would point out to the hon. member that we are involved in a number of different activities in that part of the world. We deem it appropriate at this time to strike at ISIL to decrease its capability to terrorize.
We had a suggestion from the New Democrats on Friday. I think they want to send lawyers over there to start prosecuting these individuals. Do not get me wrong. I love lawyers. I want to be very clear. I want to put that on the record. However, we are doing what is reasonable under the circumstances. I am very disappointed it does not have the support of all members of the opposition.