The Afghan Mission Film Festival
In 2013 I traveled across Canada with a collection of films about Canada in Afghanistan. The objective was to encourage those who had served in Afghanistan to share their stories in the book “Afghanistan: A Canadian Story” Ultimately I was able to collect the stories of 150 of the men and women who served between 2001 and 2014 and the book was published in 2014. The link to “Op Athena” no longer works, but I highly recommend “Waging Peace” and “Life and Death IN Kandahar” is you want a better understanding of what distinguishes the men and women who serve Canada.
The film tour is over, but with the Tell Me A Story title link above you can still have the film festival, in part or in full, and at no cost to you, come to your organization, whether you are a CF Base, a Reserve Unit, A Branch of the Royal Canadian Legion, a Canadian Military Museum, a Canadian school, or a local community or business organization prepared to help tell the story of the Canadian Military in Afghanistan, you can help to tell the Canadian story.Canadian Soldiers, Sailors, and Air Men and Women are ordinary people doing an extraordinary job for Canada. Trying to get them to tell their story, their boots on the ground experience from the conflict in Afghanistan, however, is difficult. Responses range from “I was just doing my job” to “I can’t talk about it”.
Canada and Canadians have a historical tendency to forget their military when the crisis is past. The military can take much of the blame for this. We are not very good at telling the Canadian Forces story. The legacy album “Afghanistan: A Soldier’s Story” wants to make sure the “official” record of the Afghan Conflict includes the unofficial human stories of the men and women who served. To that end a series of films have been gathered and will be heading to communities across Canada to remind Canadians, and those who served, that the human stories of this conflict, of any conflict, must be shared. They are vital to an accurate historical representation, as well as to the cultivation of a more robust Canadian identity and consistent government support necessary to sustain a credible, responsive, military.