Why Play Games? Canada's Military Needs Funding

Updated on February 27, 2019

Stop Cutting Corners - The F-18 Needs Replacement

The Canadian Conservative government had originally planned to purchase 65 CF-35 stealth fighter jets as a way to replace the aging F-18, a replacement that seems even more necessary now after news of a crash hit the media Nov. 28.

The crash occurred near one of Canada's largest fighter bases at 4 Wing Cold Lake, and while a flight safety investigation is currently underway into the tragedy, there is already conjecture regarding what could have led to the crash.

Conservative Member of Parliament and former fighter pilot Laurie Hawn said that any guessing games that might occur about the safety - or lack thereof - of the F-18 is not appropriate, and that the F-18 is actually still a very safe aircraft, although it is quite old at this point.

The fleet of F-18s was acquired 34 years ago, and there have been 19 crashes of the jet since then.

"You should read absolutely nothing into this," Hawn said of the crash.

"The F-18 has a lot of … life left. Obviously we have no idea what happened yet, so any conjecture would be way off base."

Off base, likely - but still, not without foundation. The F-18 has a limited number of safe hours for flight, and the simple fact is there are parts within the jet that are aging; as a result, each flight that is done on an F-18 wears the jet out further. Lt-Gen. Michael Hood recently told the Liberal Senate defense committee that the Liberal government had recently changed the number of jet fighters he must have to adequately defend North America and to deploy to NATO missions.

Various Canadian governments have reportedly been planning to replace the CF-18 fleet for some time; the problem is there has never been anything put into place to actually get these new jets ordered. Could that be putting our pilots - and potentially our ground crew - at risk?

Again, such speculation is dangerous, but the Canadian government continues to foot drag in spite of paying lip service to the notion that they respect our military. It's hard to reconcile the lack of newer, safer aircraft for those military members defending the skies with the government demonstrating any sort of respect to our members.

It's simple, really. While the government is currently saying that the F-18 is safe and a good aircraft, it continues to age. There aren't any new aircraft coming anytime soon - acquisition could be months or years away. How long before pilots start wondering if they should even set foot inside the cockpit? How long until the spouses and families start lobbying the government for the equipment that their family members need to safely and properly do their jobs?

Should such a moment occur when members and families actually draw a line in the sand and say the government needs to stop putting their safety at risk as they try to defend their countries, the government can't simply look back and say they wanted to save money. What price is human life, really?

We live in more dangerous times than we have previously. We need a military that can adequately defend Canadian - if not North American - interests, and right now, if Lt-General Hood's current reports are accurate, there aren't enough resources to do so properly.

So where does that leave us?

Are CF-18s Still Safe?


Something Needs To Change

While the loss of one of Canada's fighter pilots is indeed awful, it's important to realize that Canada is still working on acquiring new fighters to replace the aging current fleet. The big problem is there does not appear to be any clear answers about when those new jets can be expected, and it will hopefully not take further tragedy before the Canadian government actually finishes the replacement process.

Meanwhile, there is a grieving family, left wondering why their brother, son, spouse was taken too soon. There are colleagues and co-workers wondering if there was something, somehow that they could have done to prevent the tragedy - and there are no clear answers, and there won't be for some time to come.

If anything, this incident sheds further light as to just how underfunded the military actually is. The question is, what, if anything, is the Canadian government going to do?

This content reflects the personal opinions of the author. It is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and should not be substituted for impartial fact or advice in legal, political, or personal matters.


    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment
    • lions44 profile image

      CJ Kelly 

      3 years ago from PNW

      Important topic. We still under funding in the UK and other parts of Europe, where it is getting to be a very grave situation (they just cut two tank regiments). I'm not sure these govts. are coming to grips with reality.

      Good job. Sharing.


    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, soapboxie.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://maven.io/company/pages/privacy

    Show Details
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)
    ClickscoThis is a data management platform studying reader behavior (Privacy Policy)