‘The buck stopped nowhere’

Global details the case of a detainee kept in extreme conditions while in Canadian custody and the alleged indifference of Canadian authorities. The Star tries to sort out what our allies were doing and why a separate prison was never constructed. And the Globe depicts a mission sorely lacking in organization.

Mr. Colvin sparked a firestorm at the highest levels in Ottawa when he told a parliamentary committee that he warned for a full year that detainees Canadian troops handed over to Afghan forces faced torture before the government began to monitor them.

But behind that furor is another story: outside the combat-focused military, no one was in charge in the early part of the Afghan mission. A scattered batch of mid-level officials, lacking the incontrovertible proof that Canadians had no means to find, didn’t have the overall responsibility or weight to push for big change. “The buck stopped nowhere,” said one official involved in the Afghan mission.

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