The Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives has published a new report on Canada’s military spending. Canadian Military Spending 2010-11, written by Ceasefire.ca editor Bill Robinson, shows that Canadian military spending is higher now than it has been at any other time since the end of the Second World War.
According to the study, Canada will spend at least $22.3 billion on its military forces in fiscal year 2010-11—an increase of 54% since 9/11.
“Canada is the 13th largest military spender in the world and 6th largest within the 26-member NATO alliance,” says Robinson.
Canada’s mission in Afghanistan has absorbed a significant part of the recent increases in Canadian military spending, but this has come at the cost of Canada’s ability to contribute to UN peacekeeping operations and its ability to fund non-military contributions to global security and humanitarian action. Canada currently contributes just 56 military personnel to UN peacekeeping operations, making Canada 60th on the list of 102 contributing countries.
“Canada could make a much greater contribution to global security and humanitarian action by shifting resources to non-military security efforts and to peacekeeping operations,” Robinson says. “An increase in Official Development Assistance funding equivalent to our post-Cold War increase in military funding would make Canada a great power in the development assistance/humanitarian aid world.”
“Military spending at highest point since WWII: study,” Canadian Press, 9 March 2011
Tobi Cohen, “It’s about getting a big enough bang for our buck,” Postmedia News, 9 March 2011