Canada Goes Tankless
Date: Monday, October 13 2003
Topic: Canadian Politics
Canada is going tankless. For the first time since World War II, Canada will have not MBTs (Main Battle Tanks). Canada has used lighter armored vehicles for nearly a century, and will soon replace it's current (since 1978) 114 Leopard tanks with something lighter. With the end of the Cold War in 1991, Canada withdrew its armored brigade from Europe. Since then, it has had a difficult time sending it's tank anywhere because of their weight (42 tons each).
Most Canadian military operations in the past decade have been peacekeeping. There have been times when tanks would have been useful, but the transportation problems proved insurmountable. A new, lighter, armored vehicle (like the U.S. Stryker, which is made in Canada) would probably be used, and the new vehicles are expected to cost about $600 million. Canada already uses LAVs (wheeled armored vehicles) on peacekeeping operations. It will probably be a few years before the last two Canadian tank battalions are disbanded. Many Canadians have been complaining that their armed forces have been turned into a peacekeeping force, leaving Canada dependent on the United States to actually defend the country from some foreign threat. But no one has attempted to invade Canada for nearly two centuries, and that last attempt (by the United States) failed.