Canada and global peace

Canada has moved up to eighth position on the annual Global Peace Index (“Canada jumps six spots and cracks top 10 in 2011 Global Peace Index,” Canadian Press, 25 May 2011):

Canada has cracked the top 10 in a global security assessment that ranks countries based on how peaceful they are.

The Global Peace Index ranked Canada eighth out of 153 countries, a six spot jump over last year.

The index, produced by the Institute for Economics and Peace (IEP), suggests North America overall has improved slightly thanks in part to Canada’s rise in the rankings….

The index is a measure of global peacefulness, gauging ongoing domestic and international conflict, safety and security in society, and militarization in 153 countries by taking into account 23 separate indicators.

“There is increasing recognition that there is a real ‘peace dividend’ to be had. Our research identifies eight social attitudes and structures required to create peaceful, resilient and socially sustainable societies,” [IEP founder Steve] Killelea said.

The eight structures include a well-functioning government, sound business environment, acceptance of the rights of others, equitable distribution of resources, good relations with neighbours, the free flow of information, high levels of education and low levels of corruption.

In what some might consider an ironic juxtaposition, we also learned on Wednesday that Canada has dropped a total of 240 smart bombs so far during the Libya conflict (“Canadian warplanes drop 240 ‘smart bombs’ on Libya,” Canadian Press, 25 May 2011). The Canadian government recently ordered an additional 1300+ Paveway smart bombs to ensure that its stocks do not run out (David Pugliese, “Canada orders 1,300 smart bombs: $100,000-apiece weapons to be used in Libyan mission,” Ottawa Citizen, 18 May 2011).

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