Canada-wide Afghanistan protest on NATO anniversary

NATO is a relic of the Cold War. It has tried to reinvent itself in the years since, and has now become a military alliance that aggressively pursues the interests of its member countries, principally the United States, in areas far beyond the North Atlantic. In doing so, NATO is creating and stoking conflict. The proposed expansion of NATO membership to the Ukraine and Georgia, and NATO support for a “Missile Defense” plan in Eastern Europe, are fuelling a new arms race—and increasing the danger that Canada will be involved in other NATO conflicts.

Even more worrying, NATO maintains its policy of pre-emptive first-strike using nuclear weapons, a policy that encourages nuclear proliferation, and heightens the prospect of nuclear war.

NATO members account for at least 75 per cent of global military expenditures, allocating $1 trillion a year to military spending. In Canada, both Liberal and Conservative governments have invoked “our NATO commitment” in Afghanistan as justification for skyrocketing military expenses, now earmarked at $490 billion over the next 20 years. Canada—like other NATO members including the United Kingdom, Germany, France, and Italy—continues to support NATO’s war in Afghanistan against the peoples will. On March 13, 2008—just three weeks before a NATO Summit—Parliament voted to extend Canada’s mission in Afghanistan to July 2011. Polls showed that 58 per cent of Canadians opposed the extension.

Real security and prosperity will only be possible in Afghanistan when Western governments end their support for NATO’s war. NATO members must be accountable to their own populations, and not to NATO generals. read more

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