Wednesday, May 19, 2010

The Military-Industrial-Media-Government Complex

In a 2007 article entitled "The Conference of Defence Associations gets $100,000 a year from the Department of Defence", CDA executive director Alain Pellerin told Maclean's John Geddes :

"We also have to write a number of op-eds to the press."
Asked if there is any aspect of Tory defence policy the CDA opposes, he couldn't think of one.
Six days ago the Ottawa Citizen ran an article "End the Inquisition" by Paul Chapin which rather hysterically equated the Afghan committee's hearings on the detainee issue with Senator Joe McCarthy's anti-communist witch hunt. The Citizen did note in Chapin's bio that he is director of the above-mentioned Conference of Defence Associations, but rather unhelpfully failed to mention he was also the author of the very detainee agreement he was defending.

Yesterday Harper Bizarro had a very good post up detailing missing bio info in a Globe and Mail David Bercuson editorial, Liberals, lay down your arms. In it Bercuson advised Iggy to clamp down on Lib defence critic Ujjal Dosanjh and Lib foreign affairs critic Bob Rae re their determination to get to the bottom of the Afghan-detainee issue. As noted by Harper Bizarro, the G&M omitted to mention that Bercuson is director of the Centre for Military and Strategic Studies at the University of Calgary and director of programs at the Canadian Defence and Foreign Affairs Institute(CDFAI), and therefore has funding ties to the very Department of Defence he is defending. h/t Pogge

Also worth noting is that the comment editor at the Globe and Mail who runs these pieces joined the Advisory Council of CDFAI in 2006.

At 13 university centres across Canada, the Department of National Defence funds defence 'studies' through its Security and Defence Forum. This is from Embassy Mag in 2007 :
"According to the Department of National Defence, over 600 people, including 183 faculty members, are employed in these centres across Canada. In 2005-2006, scholars from these centres churned out 600 publications, including articles, books, and chapters. In this same period, the centres received funding worth $1,255,000. As of October 2006, DND approved a 25 per cent increase in funding. In the next five years, the funding will shoot up to $1,650,000, a 32 per cent increase."
Steve Staples, Rideau Institute, Feb 2007 :
"It's not about scholarly journals, peer reviewed articles that they have written -it's really about appearing in the mainstream media. What you tend to get as a general trend, is a steady stream of hawkish opinion from academics that are all linked together through Department of National Defence funding."

Not all this hawkish think tank funding is DND of course. CDFAI donors for instance also include Enbridge, General Dynamics, and Lockheed Martin.

Something to think about given that media Rolodex seems to fall open so easily to the same DND and corporate funded analysts over and over again.

As Pogge says, "What we have here is taxpayer dollars being laundered through the defence budget and used to pay academics to lobby us ."


1 comment:

thwap said...

And helping to lay the groundwork for a culture of militarism and contempt for human rights.


Sing for your supper Bercuson. Who cares how many people die as a result of your filth.

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