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Who are the Canadians dying in Afghanistan?

In advance of Remembrance Day, the National Post has looked at the backgrounds of the 133 Canadian soldiers who have been killed so far in Afghanistan. They found that:

BY AGE “The median age of those killed in Afghanistan is 26, but 51 of them were 30 or older, and 11 were 40 or older.”

BY REGION “Relative to its population, Atlantic Canada has suffered the heaviest losses.” “The four Atlantic provinces, with 7% of the national population, account for 23% of the dead. Saskatchewan’s eight fallen soldiers represent double its share of the population.”

BY CITY “In 2006, the six metropolitan areas with populations of over one million people — Toronto, Montreal, Vancouver, Ottawa-Gatineau, Calgary and Edmonton — accounted for 45% of the total population. But of the 133 Afghanistan dead, 26 — or 20% –come from those cities.” “The metro Toronto census area, which encompasses surrounding suburbs and makes up nearly one-sixth of the Canadian population, has lost four soldiers, 3% of total casualties. Truro, N.S., with a population of 12,000, has lost as many of its men.” “Metropolitan Montreal and Calgary have seen eight and six soldiers killed, respectively, while just one has come from the Vancouver area.”

BY GENDER AND RACE “Three women are among the Canadian dead, as are six members of visible minority groups.”

BY CLASS Christian Leuprecht, a professor at the Royal Military College, says, “The casualties do tell us something important about the composition of our force. There is a considerable over-representation from rural areas, and there has traditionally been over-representation from Atlantic Canada. That’s partially a function of how virtually all militaries recruit. They tend to recruit from lower socio-economic strata …and from areas that economically don’t do as well. In those areas the military is an attractive employer and, interestingly, an institution for social mobility within a society.”

PEOPLE Statistics aside, to read the names of the individuals who have died in Afghanistan, please go to http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Canadian_Forces_casualties_in_Afghanistan.

The full National Post article is at http://www.nationalpost.com/story.html?id=2197081.