OTTAWA — Lost in the furor over Defence Minister Harjit Sajjan’s claims to have been the “architect” of a decade-old battle in Afghanistan are fears that country is again on the edge of failure.
Liberal MPs used their superior numbers in the House of Commons on Tuesday to vote down a largely symbolic non-confidence motion brought against the embattled defence minister.
The Conservatives sponsored the motion after Sajjan exaggerated his role in Operation Medusa, a key battle involving the Canadian Forces in Afghanistan in 2006.
While the minister apologized, the Tories accused him of misleading Canadians on other issues, such as the urgent need for Super Hornet aircraft and cuts to tax benefits for soldiers deployed to Kuwait.
The vote was hardly a nailbiter, despite the NDP voting with the Conservatives, as 168 Liberal MPs joined Prime Minister Justin Trudeau in supporting Sajjan.
Green party Leader Elizabeth May and Independent MP Hunter Tootoo also supported Sajjan, resulting in a final vote of 171-122.
Yet for all the debate that led up to Tuesday’s vote, one thing that was noticeably missing was any mention of the situation in Afghanistan now.