Canada finds itself in a painful situation now. It is a problem that was recognised years ago. There have been attempts to fix the problem. But every time there seemed a viable solution, a special interest killed it off.
What is this problem? The aging of Canada's military airlift fleet. I have commented on it before. Over 50% of the Hercules fleet is grounded due to age and the others in the fleet are questionable also.
General Hillier, under the previous government of PM Martin, tried to procure replacement airframes, 10 C-130J Hercules from the RAF, but groups with vested interests thwarted these efforts.
So now upto 30,000 Canadian citizens are trapped in Lebanon as Israel pounds Hezbollah positions. So Prime Minister Harper, who is in Europe, is having his plane flown to Cyprus to help airlift these citizens out of the war zone. While General Hillier is again catching flak from neutering ninnies as he tries to buy for Canada four C-17 Globemaster IIIs from the United States.
I have to ask those who have been opposed to the purchase of new airlifters how their opposition has truly served Canada's citizenry? As people huddle at Beirut airport praying a plane can take them to Cyprus or at the port awaiting a ship to take them away, their rights as Canadian citizens are not being served. In fact their rights are being violated by a coterie of self-appointed experts who are safely ensconed in nice offices surrounding Canada's government.