Questionable arms exports up

December 8, 2013

Blog

Canadian arms exports to countries in conflict or known for human violations are on the increase, an analysis by the Canadian Press shows (Mike Blanchfield, “Canada exporting arms to countries with dicey human rights records,” Canadian Press, 8 December 2013):

Bahrain, Algeria and Iraq, countries with dubious human rights records or a history of violent internal conflict, have recently become new buyers of Canadian-made guns and ammunition, an analysis of federal government data shows.

The analysis by The Canadian Press found that Canadian exports to those countries swelled by 100 per cent from 2011 to 2012, the most recent figures publicly available.

During the same time period, exports of Canadian weapons also increased to Pakistan (98 per cent), Mexico (93 per cent) and Egypt (83 per cent), where, respectively, al-Qaeda terrorists, a deadly government war on drug cartels and seismic political upheaval have sparked violence.

Though Canada’s arms trade is legal and regulated, analysts say the increases raise questions about the government’s foreign policy commitment to human rights, and its regulatory regime for arms exports.

“Diversification is a principle of business in this globalized economy. As we see western militaries decrease their defence budgets, military industries will be looking for new markets,” said Walter Dorn, the chair of international affairs studies at the Canadian Forces College.

“The danger is that the almighty dollar may become the predominant motivator in trade deals and therefore weapons are more easily shipped.”

The analysis examined 10 years of Industry Canada data on a class of exports that is made up of military weapons, guns and ammunition, along with howitzers, mortars, flame throwers, grenades and torpedoes. It does not include other big military equipment such as vehicles, aircraft and other advanced technology, which balloons Canada’s overall arms trade into the billions of dollars.

Photo credit: DND

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5 Responses to “Questionable arms exports up”

  1. Jocelyn Says:

    Mr. Harper and all of his Ministers and Senators are a sad travesty of anything even remotely related to democratic government. He is actually not even the legal Prime Minister, since Canada’s Supreme Court ruled that his election was guilty of electoral fraud. Why is he still in charge of Canada- or should I say dismantling Canada with his own unique form of dictatorship (Canada’s first might I add)? How can a ruler be allowed to completely ignore every constitutional right of the citizens and serve only Big Filthy Oil and Weapons Manufacturers and Dealers? How can a ruler continually ignore the overwhelming alarm of the citizens as he sneaks behind their backs to sign deals that give Canada’s Natural Resources away (for 31 years), while ignoring all remaining environmental protection laws? How can he steal billions of Canadian’s hard earned tax dollars and be allowed to remain completely unaccountable as he lies and denies even his own lies and denials? Why do Canadian citizens have to spend their own had-earned dollars to hire lawyers to prevent our own government from ignoring our wishes as they serve unprincipled Corporations in exchange for more zeros on their bank balances? The list could go on for miles, but the real question is HOW Much More Will Canadians Take of this Abhorrent and Unacceptable Behaviour?

  2. M. Waters Says:

    Can you imagine the relief of human misery that can be eased with the funds spent each year on military and weapons?–(our money, spent without the consent of thousands)

    Why is Canada adopting the enlarged prison systems that have failed miserably in the US? Don’t our leaders every study research from other areas???

  3. Margaret Maier Says:

    Canada’s specialty is making money on misery and suffering using the peoples’ resources – but not their consent; is manipulating countries to add to conflicts, violating human rights, shaping frictions, human violations, supporting violence from their lofty towers, and grubbing for further sales of Canada’s killing toys. Canada’s industrial complex is busy providing jobs and selling war equipment. How was this determined? It is not a democratic decision that we swell our sales by as much as 100% every year. I see it as criminal activity.

  4. Grace Says:

    We have been told arms are for defending ourselves and our country. That is a lie. Arms are manufactured to make profits! Arms kill( but that is just a sad by product). I would like to see the House of Commons members spend one day observing an armed confrontation in C. A. R., Africa, just one day!
    I weep for Canada that we allow arms to be made in our country and then sold to middlemen who distribute them to the highest bidders. We are criminals!

  5. ROLF LOTH Says:

    This shows the hipocrisy of Canadian governments and manufacturers and that greed and the love of money are the only parameters and virtues that count. Two world wars and many armed conflicts since can be attributed to this mostly western phenomenon of manipulating the rest of the world and make others suffer while huge profits flow into the pockets of the warmongers.