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Operation Impact
Part of the 2014 military intervention against the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant
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A Canadian Armed Forces CF-18 Fighter jet takes off from Kuwait on the first mission over Iraq in support of Operation Impact on October 30, 2014.
Date 4 September 2014 - present
Location Iraq
Status Ongoing
Belligerents
Canada Canada Flag of the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant2.svg Islamic State
Commanders and leaders
Canada Stephen Harper
Canada Rob Nicholson
Canada Thomas J. Lawson
Flag of the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant2.svg Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi
Strength
Canadian Forces: Up to 30,000 total forces
Casualties and losses
None Unknown


Operation Impact is the name of Canada's contribution to the 2014 military intervention against the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant. Canadian military action began on 4 September 2014, when the Canadian government announced that it would deploy up to 100 Canadian special forces to Iraq in a non-combat advisory role. It was later confirmed that around 69 forces were operating in Iraq. On 3 October, Canada's role in the intervention increased when Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper announced that Canada would be deploying 9 total aircraft, including 6 combat aircraft to Iraq. Harper also did not rule out Canadian involvement in the American-led intervention in Syria, but only on the condition that Syria's government would approve of it. Canadian airstrikes in Iraq began on 2 November.[6]

AirstrikesEdit

The first Canadian airstrike against an Islamic State target occurred on 2 November. It was reported that CF-18s successfully destroyed heavy engineering equipment used to divert the Euphrates River near the city of Fallujah. On 11 November, CF-18s dropped laser guided bombs near the city of Bayji, in Northern Iraq. The Department of National Defence stated that the strike targeted equipment that could have been used to attack coalition assets.[7] On 17 November, a warehouse used by ISIS was struck by CF-18s.

PoliticsEdit

The Canadian Parliament voted on 7 October 2014 with 157 against 134 votes to approve Canadian airstrikes against ISIL.

After the vote, opposition leader Tom Mulcair of the New Democratic Party said the government is "plunging Canada into a prolonged war without a credible plan to help victims of ISIL terror," and "opening the door" to getting Canada involved in the "bloody" Syrian civil war.[8]

Terrorist violence in Canada deemed a response to Operation ImpactEdit

ISIL spokesperson Abu Muhammad Al-Adnani incited and advocated for a campaign of terror against both Canadian civilians and military personnel. He performed a 42-minute speech in September 2014 that called on Muslims to attack members of the coalition against ISIL.[9]

On October 20, 2014, Martin "Ahmad" Rouleau struck two Canadian soldiers with his car. Among these were Warrant Officer Patrice Vincent, who later died in hospital. Rouleau had converted to Islam in 2013; and, as he made known through comments published in his social media online accounts and via interactions with friends and family, Rouleau progressively became increasingly extremist in his views.

Concerned that Rouleau intended to act on his extremist rants, the Crown had ordered Rouleau's passport seized earlier in July, 2014 on the completion of an act in furtherance, wherein Rouleau had been intercepted trying to travel to Turkey, utilizing a common entry point for ISIL operatives. The Royal Canadian Mounted Police, however, did not have enough further evidence to constitutionally justify detaining Rouleau.[10] A video published by ISIL's spokes person Abu Muhammad Al-Adnani in September 2014, suggested for vehicular homicide as one of the methods which Moslems could attack Canadian civilians and personnel with.

Rouleau was fatally wounded by constables of Québec's Provincial Police, the Sûreté du Québec, after the vehicular-homicidal and ultimately-completed attack. Rouleau appeared to have acted of his own accord as a 'lone rat' (that is, consistent with and in furtherance of known ISIL political views but without provable direct and overt conspiracy with ISIL).[11]

On October 22, 2014, Michael Zehaf-Bibeau[12] shot Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders of Canada reservist Corporal Nathan Cirillo as Cirillo stood Honor Guard at the National War Memorial. After shooting Cirillo, Bibeau advanced towards the Parliament building, where caucus meetings were being conducted. He shot a guard in the leg and was chased down the Hall of Honor past rooms were MP's were meeting. The MPs barricaded the doors as a violent gunfight ensued. Bibeau was shot dead by House of Commons of Canada Sergeant-at-Arms Kevin Vickers in the Hall of Honour of the Centre Block.[13][14]

Zehaf-Bibeau had a lengthy criminal record of criminal activity in the Canadian Provinces of British Columbia, Ontario, and Quebec. Although police detected no provable conspiracy between Zehauf-Bibeau and ISIL (and therefore in that narrow legal sense, Zehauf-Bibeau could only be deemed to have acted alone) Prime Minister of Canada Steven Harper explained in a televised address to the Canadian People after the attack that it remains the position of the Governor-in-Council that the attacks were motivated to assist ISIL in response to Operation IMPACT, Canada's participation in the 2014 military intervention against the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant.[15]

ReferencesEdit

  1. "Canada launches first airstrikes on ISIS targets in northern Iraq - CTV News". CTVNews. http://www.ctvnews.ca/canada/canada-launches-first-airstrikes-on-isis-in-iraq-1.2083560. Retrieved 4 November 2014. 
  2. "Canadian warplanes launch first airstrike in Iraq". thestar.com. http://www.thestar.com/news/canada/2014/11/02/canadian_warplanes_launch_first_air_strike_in_iraq.html. Retrieved 4 November 2014. 
  3. The Canadian Press. "First Canadian airstrikes in Iraq". Castanet.net. http://www.castanet.net/edition/news-story-126032-4-.htm. Retrieved 4 November 2014. 
  4. AirForces Monthly. Stamford, Lincolnshire, England: Key Publishing Ltd. December 2014. pp. 35. 
  5. "Operation IMPACT". Forces.gc.ca. http://www.forces.gc.ca/en/operations-abroad-current/op-impact.page. Retrieved 22 October 2014. 
  6. "ISIS mission: Canadian CF-18s drop laser-guided bombs over Iraq". Cbc.ca. 2 November 2014. http://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/isis-mission-canadian-cf-18s-drop-laser-guided-bombs-over-iraq-1.2821425. Retrieved 4 November 2014. 
  7. "ISIS Weapons Hit by CF-18 Jets in Northern Iraq". http://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/isis-weapons-hit-by-cf-18-jets-in-northern-iraq-dnd-says-1.2831514. 
  8. 'ISIS mission: MPs approve Canada’s air combat role'. CBCNews, 8 October 2014. Retrieved 4 November 2014.
  9. Irene Ogrodnik (22 September 2014). "New ISIS audio recording urges attacks on Canada, other countries". Global News. http://globalnews.ca/news/1575601/france-is-has-threatened-coalition-civilians/. Retrieved 4 November 2014. 
  10. "Quebec attacker gave no hint of deadly plan, say RCMP, family, friends". thestar.com. http://www.thestar.com/news/canada/2014/10/21/attack_on_soldiers_linked_to_terrorist_ideology.html. Retrieved 4 November 2014. 
  11. Stewart Bell (21 October 2014). "Martin ‘Ahmad’ Rouleau killed after high-speed chase - National Post". National Post. http://news.nationalpost.com/2014/10/20/driver-who-ran-into-canadian-soldiers-near-montreal-was-known-to-counter-terrorism-officials-rcmp/. Retrieved 4 November 2014. 
  12. "Canada probes Michael Zehaf-Bibeau as possible suspect in Ottawa shooting: source". Mobile.reuters.com. http://mobile.reuters.com/article/idUSKCN0IB2IX20141022?irpc=932. Retrieved 4 November 2014. 
  13. "Ottawa shooting: Kevin Vickers hailed as hero who helped stop attacker". Cbc.ca. 23 October 2014. http://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/ottawa-shooting-kevin-vickers-hailed-as-hero-who-helped-stop-attacker-1.2809146. Retrieved 4 November 2014. 
  14. "Ottawa Shooting: Soldier Killed At National War Memorial, Parliament On Lockdown". The Huffington Post. http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2014/10/22/parliament-shooting-shots-national-war-memorial_n_6027912.html?utm_hp_ref=canada. Retrieved 4 November 2014. 
  15. "Prime Minister labels shootings as ‘terrorist’ acts". The Globe and Mail. http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/national/in-national-address-prime-minister-labels-shootings-as-terrorist-acts/article21252133/#dashboard/follows/. Retrieved 4 November 2014. 

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