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Target: Military production

Andrew Van Velzen — May 1984

The Alliance for Non-Violent Action (ANVA) is initiating a National Election / Action campaign aimed at publicising Canada’s role in military production. As part of the campaign, local groups will organise around weapons and military facilities in their areas, with national actions scheduled between October 20 and November 11.

The non-violent actions planned for the campaign will include leafletting, picketing, demonstrations and civil disobedience. The campaign will be putting out a comprehensive map which will show the locations of bases, nuclear facilities, including power plants, weapons manufacturers and other military facilities.

Among the key military installations which the campaign hopes to publicise are the storage of nuclear weapons at Comox, BC, and Bagotville, PQ; the Nanoose Bay submarine testing range on Vancouver Island; the weapons testing range at Cold Lake, AB; and Halifax Harbour as a regular visiting spot for US nuclear submarines.

The campaign will also focus on nuclear power sites, and ANY A sees the campaign for a nuclear-free Ontario and the upcoming Darlington actions as part of this campaign.

The ANVA campaign will demonstrate that the testing and production of the cruise missile is only one aspect of a longstanding Canadian involvement in war-making. Canada was intimately involved in the Manhattan Project which produced the first atomic bomb, and continues to be heavily involved in war production to this 60 of Canadian arms exports that year. Another $350 million went to other countries, of which half were part of the Third World. Canada is one of the top 5 arms exporters in the world, with about 150 companies involved in some sort of military production.

Many of these companies are located in southern Ontario and Quebec. In addition to Litton Systems, outside Toronto, these companies include Spar Aerospace, producer of the Canadarm for the space shuttle, which is definitely for military uses, and infrared detection systems for the US Navy.

DAF Intal in Mississauga, Ontario, produces helicopter recovery systems for the US Navy. Garret Manufacturing in Rexdale produces electronic components and temperature controls, and has recently teamed up with British Aerospace to bid for a $600 million Canadian Forces contract for five low-level air defense systems.

Fleet Industries in Fort Erie, Ontario, manufactures civilian and military aircraft, and supplies many of the prime commercial contractors in the US. General Motors, in London, Ontario, has a $625 million contract from the US Marine Corps for Light Armoured Vehicles for use in the Rapid Deployment Force.

The Montreal area has many defense contractors, including Pratt and Whitney, a major producer of aircraft engines for civilian and military use — including the PT-6 series, the type used in Central America to bomb guerrilla strongholds.

In Winnipeg, Bristol Aerospace is involved in electronics and rocketry work with much of their exports going to the US military program. Boeing in Winnipeg will likely be a components manufacturer for the MX missile, if the MX is approved.

In addition to these Canadian companies currently involved in weapons production, Canada has many high-tech firms that will increasingly seek profitable contracts from the Pentagon. AES Data of Montreal is one such firm, and it is opening a military testing installation in Mississauga, Ontario. AES sells word-processing equipment to the US military,

ANVA believes that the time has come to oppose Canada’s massive involvement in nuclear and conventional militarism. For more information, contact the Alliance for Non-Violent Action, c/o CMCP, 730 Bathurst St., Toronto ON, M5S 2R4.

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