PBI-Canada supports Voice of Women day of action on July 24 against the planned $19 billion purchase of fighter jets
Peace Brigades International-Canada supports the Canadian Voice of Women for Peace (VOW) day of action this coming Friday July 24 against the Government of Canada’s plan to spend $19 billion on new fighter jets.
On that day, they are asking people to plan a short ‘Strike for Climate Peace: No New Fighter Jets’ action outside of the offices of MPs across the country. That can involve delivering a letter to the MP, holding a sign outside the MP’s office, and sharing a photo of the demonstration with VOW and on social media to build public awareness.
Their day of action comes just days before three transnational weapons companies – Lockheed Martin, Saab and Boeing – submit their bids on July 31 for the contract to build a fleet of 88 fighter jets for the Royal Canadian Air Force.
These new fighter jets will replace the current fleet of CF-18 fighter jets that have conducted 1,598 bombing missions over the past 30 years.
VOW states: “We believe that continuing to consider the expenditure of $19 billion during the COVID-19 crisis, when there are so many other health, humanitarian and environmental needs, should be put to a debate in the House of Commons.”
To date, the opposition parties have not challenged the Liberal government’s plan to purchase the new fighter jets – though it should be noted that in this unprecedented time of a global health pandemic that could change.
As a contribution to the public debate, PBI-Canada has offered various articles including: Boeing implies the job benefits of its fighter jets, but peaceful spending creates more jobs and Did the $10 billion Canada spent on CF-18s help to bring peace? and Canada’s two-year window to decide on climate justice or militarism.
As we prepare for this day we keep in mind:
Ray Acheson and Madeleine Rees from the Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom statement that: “A feminist approach to peace and security is one that defines true human security not by stockpiling weapons or issuing threats, but by dismantling structures of oppression and injustice through negotiation, cooperation and redistribution of resources.”
And Phyllis Bennis of the Institute for Policy Studies commenting: “To fund the Green New Deal, with all of its component parts, we must transition away from the current war economy that pollutes the planet, distorts our society, enriches only the war profiteers.”
We are also working with World Beyond War and will be present at the CANSEC arms show in Ottawa in June 2021 when Lockheed Martin, Saab and Boeing market their fighter jets to government officials and military personnel.
The government has stated it will make its decision on which fighter jet they will buy in 2022. This makes the CANSEC arms show next year a key moment for the anti-militarism and climate justice movements to come together to say no to the fighter jets.
For more, please see the Canadian Voice of Women for Peace No Fighter Jets campaign webpage. We are honoured that one of our articles – Canada’s two-year window to decide on climate justice or militarism – is listed as a resource there.