News, Politics

Canada’s Troops Coming Home From Afghanistan

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Canadian troops in Afghanistan; image - Canadian Press

Since 2005, Canadian troops have been fighting in Afghanistan against the terrorists who blew up the World Trade Centre in New York and the people who help them. Now, Canadian soldiers are ending their mission in Afghanistan.

Troops will start coming home in July, with some staying on for another three years or so—not to fight, but to train the army and police in Afghanistan so they can take care of their own people.

Canadian soldiers were first sent to Afghanistan in 2001. Their duties were not to fight. They were to make sure Canada would be safe from terrorists, to show Canadian leadership around the world, and to help Afghanistan rebuild.

They became fighting troops in 2006 when they were sent to war-torn Kandahar province in Afghanistan. Their goal was to rid the area of the Taliban terrorists once and for all.

It was the first time in many years that Canadian soldiers fought alongside other countries–Canadian troops have mostly been peacekeepers and builders in war-torn countries. In Afghanistan they have done both and have been praised by many people in Afghanistan for their work.

The troops were supposed to come home in 2009. But in 2008, a majority of the Canadian parliament voted to keep them there until December, 2011. Now the promise to bring them back will be fulfilled and our courageous troops will start coming back home to Canada.

More than 150 Canadian soldiers have died in Afghanistan.

CURRICULUM CONNECTIONS

Writing/Discussion Prompt
Soldiers demonstrate a lot of courage everyday of their lives. Write a short poem of appreciation for the soldiers of Canada.

Reading Prompt
The writer of today’s story makes her opinion of Canada’s soldiers clear. What words does the author choose in her sentences that tell you how she feels?

Primary
Identify some elements of style, including voice, word choice, and different types of sentences, and explain how they help readers understand  texts (OME, Reading: 2.4).

Junior
Identify various elements of style – including word choice and the use of similes, personification, comparative adjectives, and sentences of different types, lengths, and structures – and explain how they help communicate meaning (OME, Reading: 2.4).

Intermediate
Identify various elements of style – including foreshadowing, metaphor, and symbolism – and explain how they help communicate meaning and enhance the effectiveness of texts (OME, Reading: 2.4).

Grammar Feature: Commas (Introductory material)
Commas are neat punctuation marks that can be used in many different ways. One common way they are used is to separate the first part of a sentence from the second part of a sentence. For example, just now I used one to separate “for example” from the rest of this sentence! Here are a few examples from today’s article.

Since 2005, Canadian troops have been fighting in Afghanistan against the terrorists who blew up the World Trade Centre in New York and the people who help them. Now, Canadian soldiers are ending their mission in Afghanistan.

Place a comma in the following sentences to separate the first part of the sentence from the second.

1. Once upon a time there was a small ant who lived in a log.
2. Of all the trees the pine was the tallest.
3. Smart as he was he couldn’t solve the mystery.
4. Looking sneaky she hid behind the desk.