Veterinarian, expert on whether Canadians will fight again

World War II ended more than 75 years ago, and since then there have been regional conflicts in which Canada volunteers for soldiers, but the willingness of all young Canadians to go to the forefront to protect their freedom when requested. There was no war that tested.

John Selkirk, who spent decades in the retired Lieutenant Colonel Sanctuary and also taught at the Royal Military College of Canada, expressed confidence that Canada would respond to modern threats.

“In these two world wars, it was an armed country. It was a war-torn country. Of course, it wasn’t just the army. It was industry and agriculture, and what God knows. We all knew it was a big deal, “Selkirk said in an interview.

“Well, do you want to do it again? I think it will happen if the threat is serious, and it’s up to the politicians to really support everyone.”

Both World Wars were fought abroad, yet the Canadians made deep sacrifices.according to Statistics Canada, 611,711 people participated in World War I, and 418,052 people were dispatched abroad. Of these, 56,638 were killed and 132,550 were injured. In World War II, 730,635 people were enlisted and 411,052 went abroad. Of these, 22,910 were ultimately sacrificed and 45,327 were injured in the hands of the enemy.

Selkirk said the Canadian Army today has 7,000 vacant seats and lacks the necessary equipment such as ships, aircraft and ammunition, and the problem is long-standing inadequate defense spending on Canadian-sized countries. Pointed out that it is in Canada.

In 2014, members of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO), including Canada, agreed on their respective efforts to spend 2% of GDP on defense by 2025. Canada’s military spending in 2020 was 1.4%, according to the latest World Bank figures. ..

However, Selkirk said various factors help facilitate Canada’s strong efforts.One of them is Article 5 of 1949 North Atlantic Treaty That formed NATO.

Article 5 states that an armed attack on one or more member states of Europe or North America is considered an attack on all member states, and each country considers it necessary to recover, including the use of force. We support by taking action. ” Keep the North Atlantic region safe. “

Another factor is women’s participation, Selkirk said. “In World War II, we had many women who volunteered to go and do non-combat things, but now women are full participants.”

“”[Overall] Certainly, I was able to match the figures of World War II. In fact, in percentage terms, I think we can do the same when the need arises, “says Selkirk.

“This is not a particularly military country,” he added, but “if we think there is enough evil that we need to eradicate, we do it.”

Epoch Times Photo
On Canada’s first memorial day, observed on November 11, 1931, the country marked the end of World War I. (Phil Carpenter / AFP / Getty Images)

Canada ‘Do the right thing’

Rob Hubert, a professor of political science at the University of Calgary who specializes in defense issues, is confident that Canada will respond as well.

He said that in the countryside of Quebec and western Canada, there was a sense of isolation in the prewar era, similar to that found in some parts of Canada today.

“There was a very strong isolation tension in Canada, definitely in Quebec, and definitely in the rural areas of western Canada.” Well, if Europeans want to be so stupid, they want to do it to Europeans. Let me do that, “Hubert said in an interview.

“If the British decide to go to war [Hitler’s invasion of] Of course, Poland has no doubt other than we go. “

Aside from the Iraq War, Hubert said Canada usually follows her allies.

“I don’t think Canada has ever responded to such a strong tradition. We do the right thing when asked. No doubt about that, but on our own, we are Americans. Can you think of a time ahead of the British and the British? “He said.

“If there is another global conflict, we can’t see us maintaining isolation …. Our tradition has always been that we didn’t want to get involved, but when the war started, We usually consider it a part [of our obligations].. “

26,000 Canadians During the furious Korean War from 1950 to 1953, he served the South Korean UN forces, and the Canadians remained as military guards for three years. In all, 516 Canadians died there, 312 of whom died in battle.

Charlie Smith, now 92 years old and living in Moosejaw, has been in the Canadian Army for three and a half years and spent the last 12 months in South Korea.

“What attracted me was that I worked on different farms without learning anything. Smith, born in Davidson, Saskatchewan and trained in Kingston, Ontario, said,” Joined the service. , Learn trade and see parts of the world ”was posted on paper. ..

“I was there for a year … I drove a tow truck and left the road open,” he said.

Asked if Canadians would stand up to serve in the event of another war abroad, Smith said, “I think they will.” “They have a lot of relationships on both sides.” Added.

Lee Harding


Lee Harding is a Saskatchewan-based journalist and think tank researcher and contributor to The Epoch Times.