Positive alternatives to spending billions on warplanes
  Niagara Falls, Ontario,
Thurssday, September 2, 2010
by: Joe Hueglin

The Prime Minister says there was no politicin' during his trip North. The RCAF warplanes flying to our common border and the Russian bombers turning 'round rather than crossing just happened to be reported, justifying the up to $15 billion purchase of new fighter planes. Lt.-Gen. Andre Deschamps, the head of Canada's air force, chimed in supportively saying " the primary role of the new jet will be to control the country's airspace."

Canada's existing fleet of CF-18s no more "control" Canada's airspace than will those being purchased should our neighbour to the North or South choose to invade. Suggesting the intent of the Russian bombers is along these lines may prove painful when negotiations over boundaries take place. The Americans have never given a centimeter to us in boundary disputes nor are likely to now.

Lockhee Martin photo of F-35

Rather than multibillion dollar planes that serve no functional purpose in Canada and will be used externally as were the CF i8s as adjuncts to US wars in Iraq and Serbia, the monies could be better spent . One way would be having built the first class icebreakers promised by the Prime Minister and now forgotten as a means of having a "bow through the ice" so to speak. A second would be enlarging the size of the Canadian Forces Disaster Assistance Response Team (D.A.R.T.) to the point that upon an emergency arising anywhere in the world it could be rapidly carried to the site by our new transport planes to provide succour.

Have these positive directions bolstering by action our claims to our North and earning us a positive place in the opinion of other countries by their knowing Canada will be there in their time of need been considered and rejected fin favour of the purchase of warplanes? Or did they never enter into consideration as positive, alternative ways of spending.


Joe Hueglin


Brewster, Murray, Air force chief flies to defence of new fighter, August 31, 2010, Canadian Press


Campion-Smith, Bruce, PM's vessels 'aren't what we need for the Arctic', July 10, 2007, The Toronto Star


Department of National Defense, Canadian Forcess Disaster Assistance Response Team, January 10, 2005, Government of Canada


Wikipedia, Lockheed Martin F-35 Lightning II, July 29, 2010



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