Re: "Changes to DND hospitality rules at military trade show raising eyebrows," May 11, 2010.
Dear editor,
Peace and human rights activists are doing more than just "raising eyebrows" about Canada's largest war-industry trade show.  We are working hard to expose and oppose it. However, our opposition to CANSEC goes far beyond quibbling over the "free lunches" dished out there.  These handouts are trivial compared to the literally billions of dollars in federal government largesse donated to Canadian military exporters.  The real problem is that CANSEC facilitates the arms trade and helps fuel wars raging around the world.  Many CANSEC exhibitors profit from the sale of high-tech components assembled into the world's deadliest weapons systems. These weapons have killed scores of innocent civilians in Iraq, Afghanistan and elsewhere.  This is why we will again be gathering outside Ottawa's fair grounds to protest Canada's most blatant symbol of war profiteering.
Richard Sanders
Coordinator, Coalition to Oppose the Arms Trade (COAT)
Author, "CANSEC: War is Business"

P.S.  I would be happy to write an article or op ed piece on CANSEC.  I have done many months of in depth research (see the link above) documenting hundreds of specific products that CANSEC exhibitors have exported for assembly into dozens of major US weapons systems used in Iraq and elsewhere. 

P.P.S.  The 2010 "free lunch" deal is not exactly new. A DND memo of March 13, 2009, from Chief of Defence Staff, Walt Natynczyk, gave armed forces personnel a blanket exemption from military conflict-of-interest rules outlined in "Acceptance of Gifts, Hospitality and other Benefits." I reported on this last year on page 13 of the document cited above.

Here is my contact information:Here is my contact information:
Richard Sanders
541 McLeod St.
Ottawa ON  K1R 5R2


Weblinks to information about CANSEC and COAT's opposition to it