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Oh… Canada? Projecting Power: the Imperative of a Strong Military for our Future

Posted By July 8, 2024 No Comments

Canadian Armed Forces (DALL-E)

Written by: Carter Jack Lewis

Who are we as Canadians if we cannot defend ourselves, help protect our allies, and project power into the world to act as a stabilizing force for peace and good? It is better to have a great military and not need one than need a great military and not have one. Not having an effective military is like having an empty fire extinguisher at home. People may never need to use a fire extinguisher, but one better be ready when needed.

Canada’s decline on the world stage in the last decade can largely be attributed to two things: subpar leadership and the continued dismantling of what was once dubbed the “Best Little Army in the World.” Canada had the fourth largest Navy at the end of the Second World War; a war in which brave Canadians commanded their own beach on D-Day, with our own navy and air force shoulder to shoulder with British, American, and other allied nations. In the face of true tyranny, Canada stood strong, fighting squarely for the good of the world. In Korea, Canadians once again answered the call to fight and lay their lives on the line for good reasons. In peacekeeping missions around the world, the Canadian military has served with honor.

The Global War on Terror in Afghanistan seems to have been written off as a failure; the failure we see is not in the capabilities of servicemen and women of ISAF, but rather the political follow-through necessary to support the heroic efforts of the Western militaries in combating state or local terrorism. Canadian soldiers performed their duty and more in Afghanistan. The overall political follow-through by the coalition failed as happened in Iraq earlier.

The decline of the readiness of the Canadian military was seen as the cost of improving the lives of Canadians by spending government money elsewhere to provide the various social security nets for which Canada was once famous. Canada cannot be a stabilizing force in the world without stability at home. Nor can it cultivate the necessary combination of soft and hard power abroad, both of which we are currently lacking. Current defense spending increases still leave us short of the NATO threshold for defense spending set at 2% of a nation’s GDP. Additionally, simply put, NATO as a whole doesn’t have enough troops to counter the new axis of evil led by Russia, China, Iran, and North Korea, who are all working together at unprecedented levels.

We’re at an all-time low in international influence. Period. At home, our streets are flooded with lawlessness; our institutions of higher learning corrupted by wokism; our societal fabric eroded. The signs are all around of a nation diminishing. What’s the easiest way to restore pride in a country? Law and order, strong education, robust healthcare and infrastructure, defense, and diplomacy.

Nothing wrong, you say? Why then did 159,503 people LEAVE Canada in 2021 and 2022… during COVID travel restrictions. And a further 94,576 left in 2023!

It is time we evaluate who we want to be as a country; are we a nation our allies can count on; can we count on ourselves?