As the federal election campaign moves into its final week, it is critical that Canadians defeat the Harper Conservatives, block their war agenda and prevent another Harper government.
The past five years of minority Conservative government have been a disaster. Stephen Harper represents the most reactionary, anti-worker, pro-war aspects of Canadian capitalism. Under his minority government, Canada has:
- expanded its and lengthened its involvement in the immoral and illegal war in Afghanistan, ignoring 10 years of opinion polls that show the public’s consistent opposition to the war;
- committed war crimes by knowingly turning Afghan detainees over to torture, and then proroguing Parliament to cover up the issue;
- involved Canada in another illegal and dangerous military intervention in Libya;
- escalated military spending to the highest levels since the Second World War, with $23 billion in 2011 meaning that one tenth of government revenue is spent on the military budget;
- contracted to spend $30 billion on F-35 fighter jets;
- deepened Canada’s military and foreign policy integration with that of the United States, including the Civil Assistance Plan which allows the deployment of US troops in Canada.
Put Peace Back on the Table!
There is a close connection between domestic and international policies – simply put, we cannot have full employment, strong social programs, housing, childcare and education if we also have war, a new arms race, high military spending, loss of sovereignty and independence, and disregard for international law. Alongside voting out the minority Conservative government, Canadians must demand that peace be put back onto the federal political agenda. We need:
- Canada immediately out of Afghanistan, Libya and NATO;
- Sharp reductions in military spending, and no F-35 fighter purchase;
- Independent Canadian foreign policy based on peace, solidarity, respect for international law;
- Nuclear and general military disarmament, and an end to the new arms race;
- Democratic and progressive reform of the United Nations;
- Canada to oppose Israeli apartheid and to support freedom for Palestine.
On May 2, Vote to Defeat the Harper Conservatives! Put Peace Back on the Agenda!
Canadian Peace Congress Executive Council
25 April 2011