Living in a pro-war society this Remembrance Day

Photo of Victory Square by Jason Payne via the Vancouver Sun

Photo of Victory Square by Jason Payne via the Vancouver Sun

The unfortunate irony of military-industrial complex and global war industry

By Cazzy Lewchuk, Columnist
Every November, we remember wars and their victims. Veterans and civilians alike are honoured and mourned. We reflect on the horrors and losses of war, and hope that nothing like that will ever occur again. At the same time, war is constantly waged and fueled around the world by our own governments.

The US military in particular is incredibly invasive and destructive to global warfare. As NATO allies, I believe that Canada and other countries participate in this warmongering—an expensive and deadly industry. Canada spends billions a year on the arms industry, buying and selling weapons used to kill soldiers and civilians en masse.

I have respect for the armed forces and individuals who serve. I understand there are horrible places in the world that do need military intervention. At the same time, I believe that wars are endlessly created and supported for economic reasons. Not every soldier deployed is fighting for the freedom of civilians—and in many cases, they only end up causing further anti-Western rhetoric. Not every bomb dropped and every person killed is done directly to keep us safer. Casualties of war and the death of civilians is never justified.

War destabilizes entire global regions. It creates destruction and conditions that further contribute to terrorism, oppression, and the refugee crisis. Even if we aren’t always participating in the war crimes, the global military-industrial complex and trade ensures that all countries are complacent. The Iraq War alone left hundreds of thousands dead, and that area is no more stable today (in fact, it’s much worse).

We remember soldiers of the past who died in combat, only to send more soldiers to their deaths across the globe. We remember civilians who were caught in the fury, only to indirectly kill more civilians with Canadian-made weapons. In the 21st century, the cost of war is more unnecessary than ever, yet our western society just keeps getting into them.

I’ll be wearing a poppy this week to remember those who died. I’ll especially be remembering the current global victims of war, in which millions of people are displaced and killed based on warfare perpetuated by us, the “good guys.” It’s disappointing and heartbreaking to see military budgets increased and more wars fought while our government hands out poppies to commemorate war as something of the past.

 

The Other Press

The Other Press, Douglas College's student newspaper since 1976. Articles, insight and updates from the New West and Coquitlam campuses.

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