Leadership: October 29, 2002

Archives

The head of the Portuguese armed forces was dismissed for publicly criticizing the shrinking defense budget. Portugal and Canada, two of NATO weakest (militarily) members are getting weaker. Both nations have been cutting their military for over a decade. Portugal, with a population of 10 million, is spending about $1.3 billion a year (to support 43,000 troops.) Canada, with a population of 31 million, is spending about $7.7 billion a year (to support 56,000 troops.) Both nations try to maintain a credible naval force to protect large shorelines. But in both countries, the cost of modern weapons is making it impossible to keep equipment up to date. Senior Canadian officers have also been outspoken, but that is tolerated, and the criticism is largely ignored. Both countries are democracies where the people have selected butter instead of guns. But the senior commanders in both nations know that if there should ever be combat involving their troops, more of them would die because of the skimpy defense spending. No one likes to discuss that openly, but that's what it comes down to.

 


Article Archive

Leadership: Current 2021 2020 2019 2018 2017 2016 2015 2014 2013 2012 2011 2010 2009 2008 2007 2006 2005 2004 2003 2002 2001 2000 1999 


X

ad
0
20

Help Keep Us Soaring

We need your help! Our subscription base has slowly been dwindling. We need your help in reversing that trend. We would like to add 20 new subscribers this month.

Each month we count on your subscriptions or contributions. You can support us in the following ways:

  1. Make sure you spread the word about us. Two ways to do that are to like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.
  2. Subscribe to our daily newsletter. We’ll send the news to your email box, and you don’t have to come to the site unless you want to read columns or see photos.
  3. You can contribute to the health of StrategyPage. A contribution is not a donation that you can deduct at tax time, but a form of crowdfunding. We store none of your information when you contribute..
Subscribe   Contribute   Close