The Avro Arrow’s demise was a high-tech tragedy

The made-in-Canada jet interceptor certainly had its problems. But the manner in which it was killed raised serious questions

The Avro Arrow’s demise was a high-tech tragedyOn Feb. 20, 1959, the Canadian government cancelled the Avro Arrow. Some people still refer to the day as Black Friday. Growing up in Ireland, my teenage awareness of Canada was limited. Other than occasional news snippets in my father’s weekly edition of Time magazine, Canada meant snow, the RCMP, Paul Anka and Yvon Durelle,…

China sets debt traps, threatens militarily and seduces

We must be on guard as China carves a disturbing global role that goes well beyond trade malfeasance

China sets debt traps, threatens militarily and seducesAs China and the United States escalate their trade talks (or trade war), China is carving a disturbing global role that goes well beyond trade malfeasance. China has emerged as an old threat revived, the authoritarian seducer. The latest Human Freedom Index, published by Canada’s Fraser Institute, the U.S. Cato Institute and Germany’s Friedrich Naumann…

The increasing – and disturbing – militarization of U.S. sports

The NFL and other pro sports leagues don't celebrate the military as gestures of patriotism. The only motivating factor is money

The increasing – and disturbing – militarization of U.S. sportsAmerica’s major professional sports leagues – most notably the National Football League – have increasingly teamed with the military and corporations to serve up ugly forms of paid and forced patriotism. “The melding of sports and the military should be seen as inappropriate, if not insidious,” says William Astore, a retired U.S. Air Force lieutenant-colonel…

John McCain’s legacy of public service and sacrifice

In the selfish era of Donald Trump, McCain’s life offered a shining example of how to serve with distinction

John McCain’s legacy of public service and sacrificeIt’s hard for Canadian citizens to take the full measure of an American politician like John McCain, whose route to public service glory began in the combat of the Vietnam War. Our country doesn’t particularly valourize the military and those who serve, unless perhaps they do peacekeeping missions with the United Nations overseas. McCain’s career…

Free-falling: Canada’s SkyHawks make skydiving look easy

A blast of fierce wind tears at my face, making it hard to take a normal breath. We’re falling towards Earth at speeds of up to 260 km/h

Free-falling: Canada’s SkyHawks make skydiving look easyBefore me, the gaping rear hatch of our aircraft reveals an awe-inspiring view of British Columbia’s Okanagan Valley, viewed from 3,200 metres in the air. The smell of smoke is pungent from area forest fires. The hatch of the Hercules J-130 cargo airplane is wide open, and I've just learned I'm to be the first…

Canadian Forces pulling their weight

Our contribution to NATO shouldn't be measured by a flawed financial system. It's a matter of willingness and ability. We have both

Canadian Forces pulling their weightU.S. President Trump is complaining about Canada and other allies not spending enough on their military operations. This brings into play the NATO goal of each country spending two per cent of gross domestic product (GDP) on defence. Aside from the ridiculous new idea of doubling that goal, there are two problems with this two…

America today: parallels to post-Gorbachev Russia uncanny

The parallels between Russia more than 20 years ago and the United States today are deeply disturbing

America today: parallels to post-Gorbachev Russia uncannyWhen the horrible first reports of the school shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla., began hitting my smartphone feed, I somehow involuntarily reconnected with feelings that I associate with the societal chaos I experienced working in Russia more than 20 years ago. It was the post-Mikhail Gorbachev era, when communism had…