Stop the new Canadian militarism

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By the Canadian Peace Alliance

Stephen Harper wants to militarize Canada. Under the Conservatives, military spending has reached its highest levels since World War II. There are now plans to expand Canadian military bases around the world. And the military is fast becoming a central thread in the fabric of society.

We need to stop this new Canadian militarism.

The Canada First Defence Strategy is the Conservatives’ blueprint for military spending, which totals $480 billion. But some costs are already way over budget, including the proposed purchase of F35 fighter jets and the construction of new Canadian warships. That could push military spending over half a trillion dollars!

Wasting money on weapons will not create security. Real security is only possible when the people of the world can meet their basic needs. While Harper spends billions on weapons, which provide few jobs in Canada, he continues his assault on pensions, wages and collective bargaining. Sadly, the Conservatives are increasing funding for the things we need the least, while decreasing funding for the things we need the most.

In addition, Harper plans to expand the reach of Canadian forces overseas. Canada already has agreements to establish bases in Jamaica, Kuwait and Germany and is planning bases for Singapore, South Korea, Senegal, Kenya and Tanzania. This expansion would give Harper the power to embroil Canada in the affairs of sovereign states, and would redefine Canada as an aggressive military power.

The new Canadian militarism also includes dramatically raising the military’s profile in more aspects of Canadian life. In the last few years, Canada Day celebrations have been dominated by military displays and recruitment drives. Citizenship and Immigration Canada has decreed that all citizenship ceremonies must include a military speaker, in order to promote military service as the highest form of citizenship. The new citizenship handbook, Discover Canada, emphasizes Canada’s involvement in wars abroad and heaps praise on the country’s military history.

We, the undersigned, believe that money earmarked for military spending must be reallocated to social and environmental programs: to protect jobs and pensions, preserve public healthcare and education, and create a green economy.

Furthermore, we oppose any attempts by the government to expand Canadian militarism abroad or to entrench it in Canadian society.

» Click here to Sign the Declaration


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