Opinion: Canada must increase military spending, urges U.S. senator


“Canadian Military Spending: A Call to Action”

In a recent development, almost two dozen U.S. senators have raised concerns about Canada’s military spending, urging the country to allocate two per cent of its GDP to its armed forces by the end of the decade. This call to action has sparked a conversation about Canada’s role in NATO and its commitments to global security.

The Call for Increased Spending

Kevin Cramer, a Republican U.S. senator for North Dakota, emphasized the importance of Canada stepping up its military investments to meet its obligations to the Alliance. He pointed out that Canada lags behind many other NATO countries in terms of defense spending as a percentage of GDP. The letter addressed to Prime Minister Justin Trudeau serves as a collective message from U.S. lawmakers urging Canada to prioritize its military commitments.

Canada’s Response

Prime Minister Trudeau acknowledged the need for Canada to increase its defense spending, stating that the government is committed to further investments in the military. The recent defense policy publication outlines a plan to raise spending to 1.76 per cent of GDP by 2029-30, with additional funds allocated for defense over the next two decades. Defence Minister Bill Blair reassured allies that Canada will remain a ready and capable member of NATO.

Implications of Low Military Spending

Former U.S. ambassador to NATO Kurt Volker highlighted the consequences of lackluster military commitments from allies, citing difficulties in passing legislation for aid packages to key countries. He emphasized that perceptions of inadequate defense spending by allies like Canada can strain relationships and impact international support. The federal Conservatives have also criticized the government for neglecting the military and risking Canada’s standing on the global stage.

A Call for Reflection

As the debate on Canadian military spending continues, it is essential for policymakers to consider the implications of inadequate defense investments. Balancing fiscal priorities with international commitments requires careful deliberation and a long-term strategy for strengthening Canada’s defense capabilities. The message from U.S. senators serves as a reminder of the shared responsibility to uphold security and stability in an increasingly complex geopolitical landscape.


The call for Canada to increase its military spending reflects broader discussions about global security and NATO’s collective defense efforts. By addressing concerns raised by allies and investing in its armed forces, Canada can demonstrate its commitment to international partnerships and contribute to a more secure world. As the debate unfolds, policymakers must carefully consider the implications of military investments on national security and Canada’s role in shaping the future of global defense cooperation.”



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