DND should be involved, from the start, in the discussions on re-allocation of security assets and budgets, that will soon begin, on our entire security apparatus, so that the urgent upgrading of men, materiel and money necessary for Canada's Forces be considered immediately and not as an afterthought. Without the recognition that DND is the frontline asset in security, any national policy in this area is bound to fail. Without the recognition that expansion of DND's military and intelligence assets, at home and abroad, is the necessary precursor to a realistic and effective overall strategy, Canada will continue to operate in a vacuum never understanding why our best efforts fail.
We must make it explicit to the world that it will be a central point of policy that Canada intends to be intimately co-operative with our traditional allies who have made the strongest military commitments to the global war on terror, namely the United States and Great Britain, and that we will have a role in their corridors of power at least on a par with Australia’s. Additionally, Canada should co-ordinate bi-lateral agreements with smaller powers who have demonstrated a more active engagement in specialized initiatives, such as Italy, Norway, Poland and Australia that will form the basis of a more vigorous involvement for Canada in democratic development around the world.
Perhaps most importantly, as a pro-active policy, DFAIT,DND and PS should sign bi-lateral agreements that will provide us with the most accurate frontline intelligence on radical Islamic groups and terrorist threats. Though this might cause convulsive contortions among the Arabists at DFAIT who look at 24 Arab capitals for career advancement, Israeli intelligence will be crucial to an effective national security policy being based on reliable information.
As difficult as it may be to accept, given our past fifteen years of comparatively open immigration policies, we need to recognize that it is in the national security interest to tighten our immigration rules on entry into Canada from Islamist states in the Middle Rim from the borders of India to the Atlantic. The reality is, with overwhelming documentation, that our current Foreign and Immigration policies have made us vulnerable to infiltration by some of the most unacceptable elements stemming from autocratic and theocratic regimes in that area.
Finally, DFAIT should prepare comprehensive policies, applicable inter-departmentally from Industry Canada through CIDA, that the amount of Canadian government financial supports, whether as export insurance, credits, corporate subsidies or foreign aid, be dependant on the quality and quantity of transparency and liberalism in evidence in the beneficiary country abroad.
The Martin administration has a singularly unique opportunity to effect a profound redemptive change in Canada's Foreign, Defense & Security policies reflective of our nation's inherent values of integrity and decency and to recapture our authentic and legitimate moral stature in the world. We must all work to assure that this opportunity is not lost.
Beryl P. Wajsman
Institute for Public Affairs of Montreal