When people are confused, bewildered, unclear about the future because of war, conflict, genocide or are targeted for their religious or cultural identity. Peacekeepers are sent to maintain peace, security, protect human rights and help restore the rule of law. Peacekeepers can be members of the armed forces, police officers or civilian experts.
In 1956, Egypt nationalized the Suez Canal causing Britain, France and Israel to declare war. Lester Pearson was the Canadian Minister of Foreign Affairs he suggested creating a peacekeeping force to stabilize the situation and to permit the withdrawal of the attacking forces. Pearson also offered a battalion of Canadian troops.
As a result of Lester Pearson's leadership in the 1956 Suez Crisis
the United Nations Emergency Force (UNEF) was quickly formed and placed under the command of Canadian Major-General E.L.M. Burns.
Lester Pearson won the Nobel Peace Prize and many Canadians consider peacekeeping part of the country's identity. 125,000 Canadians have served in peacekeeping missions around the world with 130 casualties.