Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Harper Gov’t Approves $490 billion in New Military Spending

by Hassan Reyes
Basics Issue #10 (Aug/Sep 2008)

While our public facilities are either crumbling or becoming privatized as a result of a lack of government funding, such as with education, health care, social housing, social assistance, and public transit, Harper and the Federal Conservative government released a 20 year plan to give almost half a trillion dollars to the military. Clearly, there’s no shortage of funds laying around in the Federal public purse.

The 20-year plan will boost the defence budget every year starting in 2011 until it reaches $30 billion a year in 2027-28.

The funding also includes:
• $20 billion for new aircraft, tanks and ships;
• $15 billion in transport planes, trucks and helicopters that had been purchased earlier; and
• $250 billion to recruit 70,000 regular and 30,000 reserve force personnel.

The hundreds of billions for recruitment should signal that plans are underway to start aggressive military recruitment campaigns directed at the youth, in likely similar fashion as is done in the United States. Using education as the carrot, war mongers offer tuition payments for post-secondary school as a means to get our kids to register with the military. Most of these young people never make it back from their “tours of duty” to make use of their education.

The plan focused heavily on ‘responding to terrorist attacks’, ‘leading major international operations for an extended period’ and ‘deploying personnel to international crises’. Combined with money to maintain the ability to conduct continental operations through the North American Aerospace Defence Command its obvious that Harper and his government are very interested in increasing Canada’s involvement in the US-led ‘War on Terror’.

The Liberals for their part only complained that these were not new announcements, which confirms that they are indeed spineless lapdogs serving the people who want to spend our money and send our kids to die for other people’s wealth.