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Federal Budget: The Decade of Culture of peace is more like the decade of the cult of war PDF Print E-mail
Peace News
Thursday, 04 March 2010 03:13
Federal Budget: The Decade of Culture of peace is more like the decade of the  cult of war
PEJnews  Joan Russow
In the year 2000, the Decade of the Culture of Peace was proclaimed. Rather than reducing the military budget, Canada has consistently increased the Military budget over the Decade. And rather than banning uranium mining, and instituting a fair and just transition for workers and communities, the Conservative government, in the Speech from the Throne, advocated increased uranium mining.


Increasing the Military Budget
In the 1999-2000 Federal Treasury Board Estimates, the Canadian Military Budget was 9 billion per annum; in the 2009-2010 Treasury Board Estimates, the Canadian Military Budget is projected to be 19.3 billion per annum (main estimates) and 1.8(planned adjustment) = 21.1 billion [actual budget figures will be checked - may be a reduction because of withdrawal from Afghanistan in 2011]. The Treasury Board Estimates are usually a good indication of the subsequent budget. Canada has increased the military budget rather than reducing or reallocating the military budget as has been agreed to in numerous international conferences and UN General resolutions such as the following:

. Such as the following: In the Habitat 1 Agenda from 1976, and from Chapter 33 of Agenda 21, at UNCED in 1992.

In 1976 at Habitat 1, member states of the United Nations affirmed the following in relation to the military budget:

"The waste and misuse of resources in war and armaments should be prevented. All countries should make a firm commitment to promote general and complete disarmament under strict and effective international control, in particular in the field of nuclear disarmament. Part of the resources thus released should be utilized so as to achieve a better quality of life for humanity and particularly the peoples of developing countries" (II, 12 Habitat 1). In chapter 33 of Agenda 21 every state made a commitment to reallocate military expenses

Increasing support for the mining of Uranium
In the Speech from the Throne, the following commitment was stated:
``...While safeguarding Canada’s national security, our Government will ensure that unnecessary regulation does not inhibit the growth of Canada’s uranium mining industry by unduly restricting foreign investment. It will also expand investment promotion in key markets.``

The dire need for a fair and just transition program in the uranium industry has been advocated for years. A whole generation of First Nations workers have died young as a result of working in the uranium mines in the 1950's, and the environmental devastation is legendary. The late Dr Fred Knelman, author of "Reagan, God and the Bomb", and subsequently "America, God and the Bomb", stated: ³There is a little bit of Canadian uranium in every bomb in the US arsenal. [Not to mention in the arsenals of the other nuclear armed states.]

In the Forward for  Dr Jim Harding`s: Canada¹s Deadly Secret  Saskatchewan Uranium and the Global Nuclear System, Helen Caldicott writes the following:

``Harding exposes the role the government played in perpetuating nuclear propaganda through the disinformation of campaigns of its covert Uranium Secretariat and penetration of the public education curriculum... He also explores the deadly corporate planning processes that reveal the growing partnership between the oil and nuclear industries. Harding  unveils the dark side of nuclear politics in his home province, which bears the distinction of of being the largest uranium-producing region in the world and he challenges us to explore how Canada has consistently been complicit and instrumental in the expansion of the global nuclear system. (Forward by Helen Caldicott)

Helen Caldicot recently stated: ``Nuclear power not only induces the spread of nuclear weapons, it is and will be a potent promoter of cancer, genetic disease and congenital abnormalities for this and thousands of future generations``. (How Did an Idealistic President Become a Champion of Nuclear Power and By Default, Weapons Proliferation? the Huffington Post (February 2, 2010)

In Canada, and the US, the Decade of the Culture of Peace has become the cult of war.


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