[Update 13:00 13/10/07]
Allison's post at The Galloping Beaver underlines how Harper has carefully selected people who are sympathetic to his hard-line views.
Somewhere in my past life, I've heard this story before...where was it? Oh yes, wasn't MP Wajid Khan supposed to be "party neutral" in his report on the Middle East affairs portfolio? Yes, yes he was - then his whole project got black-holed when it started to show things that Harper didn't want to deal with.
So, do I expect anything genuinely useful to come out of Harper's "non-partisan" panel to review Afghanistan? Frankly, no. I suspect the reality is that it will quietly fizzle into the background after the throne speech - only to be dragged out when Harper needs to defend his otherwise polarizing partisanship in the House of Commons.
While I have some nominal respect for the various members of that panel, I simply don't believe that they are going to get to say anything honestly once the PMO gets involved. Whatever comes out will be spin-cycled until it's unrecognizable - especially if it doesn't fit into Harper's idea of what should happen in Afghanistan.