How equipped is Canada to deal with disasters?

In the face of so many worldwide (natural and other) disasters lately, where does Canada stand in being able to recover from such a thing? In a column in the Toronto Sun today, Mercedes Stephenson examines this topic. “National defence is no different than insurance. It’s expensive, but you can’t afford to be without it. A well-equipped and trained military is Canada’s insurance policy,” Stephenson writes. She says although disasters happen with little warning, a strong disaster response from the Canadian Forces in the past has “enabled us to minimize damage and save lives.” She cites our own province’s experience of Hurricane Igor, after which the Canadian Forces deployed three ships and an entire engineering regiment within 72 hours of the storm. She says, “that would have been impossible for the cash-strapped forces 10 years ago. Yet a rapid, powerful and flexible response is what the Canadian taxpayer rightfully expects and demands of their military today.” Time will tell if and how those resources will be used in Libya.

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