Monday, January 11, 2010

Belly up to the Bar Boys. We're Gonna' Have us a War!

The dramatic increases in U.S. military budgets in the [Ronald] Reagan years fuelled aspirations north of the border in both the military and the defence industries. The title of a 1983 cover story in Canadian Business reflected that excitement: "Hail to the Hawks: Ronald Reagan's $200 billion-plus defence budget is good news for Canadian business."

Increasingly, a Canadian defence lobby began to emerge as a potent force in Canadian politics.


Veterans groups and military institutes had long exerted pressure on behalf of the military, but these organizations became more active and effective in the 1980s. The most important of these is the Conference on Defence Associations (CDA), an umbrella group representing military and retired military personnel as well as business, academic and professional types with military interests. The CDA enjoys access at the highest levels, including direct access to the prime minister.

While ostensibly an outside, non-governmental group, the CDA receives funding and organizational support from the Department of National Defence. In effect, then, the Defence Department is subsidizing a group to lobby the government to maintain the Defence Department's budget." (HOLDING THE BULLY'S COAT, Canada and the U.S. Empire, Linda McQuaig, Doubleday Canada, ISBN 978-0-385-66012-9, pg. 168)

But how could they justify continued increases in their budget to build up our military, without a chance to show off their prowess and toys? They just had to find themselves a good war.

In an attempt to clean up and organize my blog, I'm using this as a starting point for all postings on military contracts, and those 'lucky' enough to get them. Clearly they are the only ones winning in this so-called "War on Terror".


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