Skip to comments.Unarmed, in a hostile world
Posted on 10/11/2002 7:50:51 AM PDT by MD_Willington_1976
October 10, 2002 Unarmed, in a hostile world By LINDA WILLIAMSON -- Toronto Sun
Quick - name a country with uncertain weapons and defensive capability, a fragile, demoralized military and an unpredictable strongman leader whose "emerging hostility" has invited the wrath of the U.S., putting his country's sovereignty at imminent risk.
If you said "Iraq," go sit in the corner with Defence Minister John McCallum.
That's the chilling picture painted in this week's scathing report by the ex-military men and defence experts who make up the Conference of Defence Associations - a report titled, lest anyone miss the urgency of its content, A Nation at Risk.
The eye-opening document makes the strongest case yet that 30 years of neglect and budget-slashing have left Canada's military dangerously dysfunctional. (This is the same group, remember, that in last year's report, pre-Sept. 11, pointed out our military investment ranks just ahead of Luxembourg's.)
But this is not your usual lament for more military money - the kind Liberals like McCallum and his boss Jean Chretien like to shrug off as whining from special interests.
Rather, it's a clear-eyed look at where years of military neglect leave Canada in the post-Sept. 11 world, and the very real risks we all face thanks to naive leaders who believe a "make-love-not-war" attitude scores them political points.
AUDITOR GENERAL'S REPORT
I'm going to quote at length from it here, because it was upstaged Tuesday by the coinciding release of Auditor General Sheila Fraser's latest attack on government waste and incompetence (which also included some defence horror stories). And because it is, frankly, a must-read.
For his part, McCallum dismissed the report's "apocalyptic language," while the PM blathered something about how he's received a lot of praise for our troops' work in Afghanistan (huh?). None of which addresses its crucial core message (read it for yourself at www.cda-cdai.ca).
It bluntly warns that the Canadian Forces are in a "crisis" that threatens not just their capability but Canada's sovereignty. To cite just one example, the CDA estimates the navy will be so downgraded in three to five years, it "would have no alternative but to concentrate on homeland defence, and even that would have to be conducted under the direction of the United States Navy." As for the army, in 18 months, i.e., by the time Chretien retires, 50% of its weapons and fleet could be grounded "because the purchase of spares has been neither consistent nor adequate."
The U.S. in particular is not amused with our "defence freeloading," the authors warn."The cumulative outlook from their perspective is that Canada has damaged its relations with its chief ally and trading partner, the USA. This is the result of intemperate anti-American statements made by members of the Canadian government and other senior officials and the sharp decline of the Canadian Forces over the past decade ...
"The U.S. perceives that Canada does not recognize the security problem, let alone assign adequate resources to resolve it ... If Canada does not act to protect itself, others, especially the U.S., will do it for us, with all the adverse consequences this implies ...
"Americans cannot understand why the prime minister seems not to be taking advice on foreign affairs and defence effort. They think it is inconceivable his advisers would overlook the damage he is doing. The U.S. does not understand how Canada can do this to itself ... "
In that respect, of course, Americans are not alone. Plenty of us in Canada feel the same way, as do countries like Australia, France and the U.K, all of which have revised their defence strategy and increased spending in recognition of "the new realities," the report notes.
"The USA is preparing for a second terrorist attack. Canada has not considered the consequences of premature detonation on Canadian territory or secondary consequences of weapons of mass destruction," it declares darkly.
Is there a fix? Well, the CDA urges an immediate allocation of $1.5 billion to defence - while noting that of the feds' purported investment of $1.2 billion on "security" in the last budget, only $510 million actually went to the military, $210 million of which had already been spent on the mission to Afghanistan. It also demands a total defence policy review and a new white paper next year. "Only in this way can the serious risks to national sovereignty and well-being be avoided."
Not that the authors are optimistic:
"The only way that the prime minister and his close advisers could be convinced to increase defence spending would be if a major national embarrassment were to occur because of weak Canadian Forces," they write. "In the present situation, this is possible."
I am sure glad that I had the opportunity to move to the USA, I've said it before, Canada is a socialist dictatorship that puts up a good front.
Here is the link to the CDA report, it is rather long because it is in both English & French...you know 2 official languages crap to please the Queerbeckers in Quebec
When are those Canucks going to figure it out? That's one of the first things that happens when you let Liberals run your country. Thirty years is a long time to be foolish!
Might not be a bad idea, but I think we need to capture the U.S. Senate first.
Wise people might read about Canada and say "this shouldn't be allowed to happen here in the US." Then there are the liberals. And their enablers, the greedy people with their hand out ready for your tax dollars. When will they figure it out?
I think that some sort of retrenchment is inevitable whether or not we get tired of the defense freeloaders, and the EU needs to be aware of this much more than Canada. The time for the buildup of regional security infrastructure is now before U.S. economic considerations make it mandatory. The U.S. cannot and will not maintain its worldwide defense expenditure in the defense of a nonexistent empire forever, and self-righteous anti-American rhetoric will not keep the barbarians from the gate.
Except Quebec. And I'm not real thrilled with the eastern provinces either. The western ones however.....
It's like the hard-working brother who has to keep floating his dead beat brother money, just because the family doesn't want to have a homeless relative.
I know that keeps pissing my brother off. 8-)
We had done most of the coastal mop-up, and liberated the low countries while England, Russia, and America chased the Nazi Wehrmacht back to Berlin.
We had the third largest navy on earth.
Today, as we speak, the TOTAL armed personnel in the forces (army, navy and air force combined) is less than 55,000. From a population of just over 30 million.
It's an utter disgrace.