Centre for International and Defence Policy

Centre for International and Defence Policy
Centre for International and Defence Policy

“Militarizing a pandemic: Defence experts say idea of sending U.S. troops to border makes no sense"

CBC News
26 March 2020 (Read the complete article)


As if there wasn't enough COVID-19 chaos in the world already.

A U.S. Homeland Security proposal to put up to 1,000 American troops on the border with Canada — a notion that seemed to have found some favour with the Trump administration — had the potential to be an extraordinary and unnecessary diplomatic distraction, say national security and defence experts.

"It is the symbolism and the signalling that is particularly damaging," said Stéfanie von Hlatky, an associate professor of political studies at Queen's University in Kingston, Ont.

"It breaks with the precedent of an unmilitarized border."

The U.S. proposal, first reported by Global News, called for 1,000 American soldiers to conduct surveillance of irregular crossings and reinforce the country's border patrol agency.  A senior U.S. administration official confirmed to CBC News on Thursday that the measure was under consideration but no decision has been made. 

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