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Canada’s Military in the 21st Century

Having finished a slew of audio books, I returned to some podcasts I’ve been neglecting. One is the Best of Ideas, a fantastic CBC show. I listened to a fascinating discussion (MP3, 12 MB, 53:00) about the present and future of Canada’s military. They discuss how the military can transform itself to remain relevant both domestically and in international operations. All three speakers are extremely articulate.

In particular, the opening section discusses the reality of Canada’s modern military, which is far from the blue-bereted peacekeeper we’ve come to associate with it.

I didn’t necessarily agree with all of the proposals put forth–there’s some scary talk of disconnecting the military from parliamentary oversight–but it proved an enlightening and informative show. If you don’t want to take on the whole thing, here’s the three-minute conclusion, which was pretty thought-provoking.

On a related point, I find the current discussions about committing an international peacekeeping force to Lebanon pretty repulsive. We’vee got a conflict where a few hundred people have died, and already the international community is kicking around the idea of sending in troops.

Meanwhile, in places like the Congo and Rwanda and the Sudan, literally millions of people have been killed, and the West is reluctant to send in more than a platoon to evacuate their citizens.

4 Responses to “Canada’s Military in the 21st Century”

  1. Steve

    Hi Darren:
    Can you do me a favour and post the script for the play that you have written ( “Bolloxed”). I am very interested in reading it and will pass on my constructive comments.

    Many thanks,
    Steve

  2. darren

    Hi Steve,

    Thanks for this. I wrote this response to somebody else, so let me recycle it:

    The short answer is ‘not yet’. The long answer is not yet because:

    1) It’s not done. While I’ve got a blog about the play’s development, it’s not necessarily a play development blog (if that makes any sense).

    2) I’m not sure if and how I want to release it to the world. I just haven’t thought through that part of the equation yet.

    3) While I think support the ‘make it free and people will buy it’ model espoused by Cory Doctorow and the like, I’m not sure if ‘make it free and people will come’ works the same way.

    I plan to post a few more chunks before the Fringe, and will decide if and when I’ll post the full text afterwards.

  3. Jeff

    Back on topic, you make an excellent point here Darren:

    “Meanwhile, in places like the Congo and Rwanda and the Sudan, literally millions of people have been killed, and the West is reluctant to send in more than a platoon to evacuate their citizens.”

  4. Mark

    I would have to guess that the “West” does not want to get involved in the African situation for a couple of reasons.

    1) It is not high profile, and the Americans do not care.

    2) Those conflicts do not involve puppet states nor potential connections to oil fields.

    Just my thoughts but that would be my guess.

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