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OPINION: A Massive Military Base Would Help Churchill

CHURCHILL, MB – The town of Churchill is struggling.

The closure of the only rail line into the town has made it a fly-in community, and is only the latest blow suffered by the community. The area’s economy has been devastated by the closure of the Port of Churchill, which cost many jobs and deprived our nation of a strategic deep-water port.

While there has been talk of food subsidies and assistance packages, that shows a significant lack of vision on the part of those in power. Instead of just tinkering around the edges, Canada should take this opportunity to create a lasting solution for Churchill that will benefit the community, and strengthen our entire country.

That solution is for the federal government to build a large military base in the Churchill area.

The fight for the arctic

The battle for the arctic is heating up. While Russia and other nations expand their military presence in the north, Canada is doing nothing. Our weakness could cause us to lose out on trillions of dollars of potential wealth in the north. Our “arctic sovereignty” is meaningless unless we have military strength to back it up.

That’s why an investment in our northern military forces now will pay off big time later. We should have at least 10,000 active troops stationed in the north, and we should greatly expand our navy and air force in the region. Building the large military facilities to achieve those goals would be a massive economic boost to the entire northern region, and would be accompanied by infrastructure investments in durable railroads and highways in the region.

Reorienting Churchill around military objectives would benefit the region through substantial job creation, and would benefit our entire country by strengthening our national security and boosting our claim to northern resources. It would be a win-win, and is far superior to anything being discussed currently.

Of course, such a plan would require the government buying the Port of Churchill back from OmniTrax. That’s simply a no-brainer at this point, as it makes zero sense for such a strategic national asset to be owned by a foreign billionaire.

Our national security, resource wealth, and job creation must be first priority for the federal government. A big military build-up in Churchill will achieve all of those goals.

Spencer Fernando, MyToba News

Spencer Fernando is a columnist and reporter for MyToba News. You can read more of Spencer’s writing at his website SpencerFernando.com
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8 Comments

  • Bonnie Friesen says:

    I agree that Port Churchill and the railway serving it should not be owned by foreigners. Foreigners are not interested in helping to assure Canadian sovereignty in the north and therefore would seek to weaken Canada’s presence there by neglecting the railway and killing commerce via Port Churchill.

  • Garry Harbottle says:

    It’s a deep-water seaport! Cargo ships anyone?

  • Jim says:

    I agree with Fernando. As global warming unfolds, the riches of the Artic will become self-evident. Canada must reinforce its presence just as the Russians are doing. A couple of navel icebreakers would also be desired and of course, their home base would be Churchill.

  • Terry says:

    A deep water port, good railway serving Churchill, Manitoba and Canada should be a given for the federal /provincial governments and the people of Canada

  • Popolopo says:

    Air ships also know as dirigibles could be the answer. They carry huge loads and are far cheaper to run than an old railway track that is always going to need repair. Ships can easily bring in the real heavy stuff,after all it is a sea port.

  • Dee says:

    It is interesting that our Prime Minister will dole out all kinds of money to support his ego. For example: bringing in 25,000 refugees and allowing illegal border crossing for so called asylum seekers and putting Canadian health at risk by legalizing Marijuana . But will he even consider helping Churchill Mb. in the same way helps himself to our country’s resources? He breaks rules for his benefit but will let the red tape process go through to the end before help comes to Churchill. Man up Trudeau, put some pants on and work for Canada not your ego!

    • ninetyninepct says:

      Laundering $25 million through the UN to give to Hamas who is using that Canadian tax money for weapons to attack Israel is way way more important to trudeau than actually doing something for Canadians.

      trudeau HATES Canada. A significant military base only makes common sense, something we can’t ever expect from trudeau.

  • Norm says:

    It would have been still open had Harper and his gang not sold the wheat board and allowed the port to close, with that I agree the Military needs to open a massive base and move part of the SARS operation from Winnipeg along with Fighter aircraft and a Battalion of Infantry who are in Edmonton with no training area on a old air base.