15 Images
DIPLOMACY: A Canadian soldier talks to villagers. A poll in December said 35% of Canadians backed the war. (Damon Winter / LAT)
ON THE FRONT LINES: Canadian troops at a base in Kandahar province, once the stronghold of the Taliban. (Damon Winter / LAT)
KANDAHAR SUNRISE: Canadian forces prepare for a mission. Political officials in Canada, noting their soldiers who are fighting insurgents in southern Afghanistan, want to see NATO allies share more of the perilous duty. (Damon Winter / LAT)
DOWNTIME: A Canadian soldier works out at a base in Masumghar. Canada’s combat losses in Afghanistan loom large back home, a country of 33 million. (Damon Winter / LAT)
Canadian soldiers prepare for a nighttime convoy from their base at Kandahar Air Field to a forward operating base at Masumghar, a strategic point in the Panjawaii district. (Damon Winter / LAT)
Canadian Army engineers wake before sunrise at the Forward Operating Base at Masumghar outside Kandahar. (Damon Winter / LAT)
Canadian Army private Dustin Seabrook smokes a cigarette in the living quarters at Strong Point Center, a small outpost near the Forward Operating Base at Masumghar, outside Kandahar. (Damon Winter / LAT)
Joint patrols by the Afghan and Canadian armies turned up weapons, believed to be used by Taliban fighters, hidden and coated with grease to survive the harsh winter. (Damon Winter / LAT)
Canadian Army Cpl. Jason Dewar tries to get some rest outside his tent in the Canadian barracks at Kandahar Air Field after working an overnight shift. (Damon Winter / LAT)
Canadian Army Cpl. Darren Heimann shaves using the mirror of a LAFV (Light Armored Fighting Vehicle) from a position at Masumghar overlooking the Panjwaii valley, the site of fierce fighting in which Canadian forces suffered heavy losses during Operation Medussa late last year. (Damon Winter / LAT)
Master Cpl. Karen Bown gets coffee at the Tim Horton’s at the base at Kandahar Air Field in Kandahar, Afghanistan. The coffee and doughnut chain is a Canadian staple and was brought to the base, which is heavily populated by Canadian soldiers, at a reported cost of 3.9 million Canadian taxpayer dollars. (Damon Winter / LAT)
Canadian soldiers play a pickup game on the hockey rink used almost exclusively by Canadian troops at Kandahar Air Field. (Damon Winter / LAT)
Canadian Army Bombadier Steve Mallay lights a cigarette in the back of a Light Armored Fighting Vehicle (LAFV). (Damon Winter / LAT)
A Canadian soldier searches through a compound in the Panjwaii Valley on a joint operation with the Afghan army looking for weapons and intelligence material. (Damon Winter / LAT)
Afghan National Army troops enter a compound in a small village in the Panjwaii Valley outside Kandahar after shooting in in the door. Afghan soldiers, under the guidance of the Canadian military, conducted house to house sweeps to look for weapons and intelligence material. This day large amounts of marijuana were found but no weapons. (Damon Winter / LAT)