National Newswatch

Canada’s arms deal with Saudi Arabia is shrinking

Sep 10 2018 — Murray Brewster — A Canadian defence contractor will be selling fewer armoured vehicles to Saudi Arabia than originally planned, according to new documents obtained by CBC News. That could be a mixed blessing in light of the ongoing diplomatic dispute between the two countries, say human rights groups and a defence analyst. The scaled-back order — implemented before […]

Canadian military to severely curtail use of recreational marijuana

Sep 7 2018 — Murray Brewster — The Canadian military will severely restrict and in some cases totally prohibit the use of recreational marijuana once it becomes legal this fall. National Defence released its formal policy on Friday along with the accompanying regulations, which impose limits of pot that are more wide ranging than those governing alcohol. The regulations state members of […]

Government lawyers ask for defamation case against veterans minister to be tossed

Aug 24 2018 — Murray Brewster — An Ottawa judge has reserved decision on whether to throw out a defamation lawsuit against Veterans Affairs Minister Seamus O’Regan. Federal lawyers argued in a five-hour hearing on Friday that allowing the case to proceed would infringe on the federal politician’s freedom of expression. A motion to dismiss the lawsuit, brought by outspoken veterans advocate […]

A final $2.1M spent on maintenance for Canada’s aging Sea Kings

Aug 24 2018 — Murray Brewster — A maintenance contract to keep some of Canadian air force’s near-55-year-old Sea King helicopters flying has been extended to end of this year, federal documents reveal. The cost to taxpayers will be $2.1 million, a spokesperson for Public Services and Procurement Canada (PSPC) confirmed in an email. The authorization was granted under a long-term agreement […]

Liberals faced closed-door criticism over now-cancelled Super Hornet fighter plan: documents

Aug 21 2018 — Murray Brewster — The Liberal government’s now-scuttled plan to buy Super Hornet jet fighters as a stop-gap measure for the air force faced an initial storm of back room criticism from one of Canada’s leading defence companies, internal documents reveal. Executives with CAE Defence and Security Canada, headquartered in Montreal, wrote and met with senior federal officials in […]

Shipbuilding program hits snag as inspection finds defective welds in hull

Aug 16 2018 — Murray Brewster — The first civilian ship built under the federal government’s marquee shipbuilding program will have portions of its hull re-welded because an inspection has uncovered a series of defective joints, CBC News has learned. Up to 44 metres of welds on the Canadian Coast Guard Ship Sir John Franklin — which was launched only last December […]

The Liberals want to ‘refresh’ the shipbuilding strategy. What does that mean?

Aug 15 2018 — Murray Brewster — The federal government has been quietly debating a “refresh” of its marquee — but troubled — national shipbuilding strategy, federal documents reveal. A memorandum to the deputy minister of Finance, obtained by CBC News under access to information legislation, notes there was “tangible progress” in ship construction last year, but also references impending productions gaps […]

Vets minister sued for defamation in fight over pensions

Jul 21 2018 — Murray Brewster — A well-known, outspoken veterans advocate is suing a federal cabinet minister for defamation, CBC News has learned. Sean Bruyea of Ottawa filed the action against Veterans Minister Seamus O’Regan in the Ontario Superior Court of Justice on May 11, copies of which were recently released. The suit, which asks for $25,000 in damages, stems from […]

Trudeau and Trump talk trade on NATO sidelines

Jul 11 2018 — Murray Brewster — Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and U.S. President Donald Trump met face-to-face today for the first time today since the disastrous G7 summit in Charlevoix, Que., last month. Both leaders are in Brussels this week for North Atlantic Treaty Organization meetings. The Prime Minister’s Office said Trump and Trudeau “had a conversation on the margins of […]

Trudeau not planning one-on-one meeting with Trump at NATO summit

Jul 11 2018 — Murray Brewster — Any encounter between U.S. President Donald Trump and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau over the next two days will happen on the margins of the NATO summit in Brussels — not in any deliberate, structured bilateral meeting. The NATO meeting represents the first time the two leaders have been in the same room together since the […]

Trudeau in Latvia commits to extra troops, extended stay in NATO mission

Jul 10 2018 — Murray Brewster — Canada will commit extra troops and remain in Latvia as part of NATO’s mission to deter potential Russian aggression until 2023, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau confirmed Tuesday. The announcement was made following a bilateral meeting in the capital Riga with Latvian Prime Minister Maris Kucinskis. CBC News first reported the extended contribution on Monday.