Michael O'Hanlon


Afghanistan: Opinion leaders, with their opinions

So my trip to Afghanistan was a Government of Canada junket. Might as well just say it outright. They (Privy Council Office, Foreign Affairs, and National Defence; it was DND that extended the invite) run occasional “opinion leaders’ tours” so people with some chance of influencing the national debate over Afghanistan can actually see the place. Typically the guest list is a mix of academics, think tankers and journalists. The model is very similar to the one that led to me being invited by NATO to visit Afghanistan from Brussels in October 2007, except that, of course, that group was multinational and this one was Canadian.