Of course not, the United States outspends the rest of the world combined in terms of military (though I've heard that recently they've caught up enough that we only outspend MOST of the world combined). I was never arguing that Canada could somehow "compete" in a sense that they could win.thaluikhain said:I disagree. Canada cannot compete with the US in conventional forces, because the US military is overwhelmingly larger, if not necessarily superior on a piece by piece basis.
The problem with a World War scenario is that they don't have to "compete" with us. The idea that they can be equipped well enough to win any engagement means that we could face much better equipped resistance forces than have existed historically. Looking at just how attempts to control Afghanistan have gone in the past, for instance, shows us that taking over a country and then being able to move onto the next country is more costly than it has been before. When the USSR tried to control Afghanistan during the Cold War the act of the US quietly arming the resistance with something more modern made it a situation where the USSR realized they had to pull out. This action later bit us in the ass since we forgot the lessons we learned from that same conflict and ended up trying to do the same thing that Russia had tried to do decades earlier. Now we've been fighting it out in Afghanistan for over a decade.
Now if you were to take a modern military and did the same thing, it'd become a much messier prospect. Germany had severe issues with the rebels in France during WW2. So imagine if those rebels had the kind of portable destructive power that we have today in shockingly ample amounts. If a few guys in Afghanistan can rain hell down on a military base using some stolen or second-hand RPGs, imagine the sort of destruction a splintered military could do in the same circumstances. Would "Canada" be victorious over us? No, not at all. But to think that we could stomp on the country and then move onto the next front to fight another country with similar equipment and continue to do so for multiple fronts is wishful thinking at best. Every military in the world has analyzed their chances of winning against any potential aggressor and it has become less and less likely to win against multiple countries at once. Entering a World War, regardless of who is on your side, means exactly that. You have to be willing and able to not just fight one country but every country that throws themselves at you at the same time. It just isn't feasible at today's level of technology to do that. There would have to be either a massive shift in technology in favor of a single power or there would have to be a motivator of profound merit to make people look beyond what I've long considered the "clusterfuck factor".
I'm not arguing that there will never be another World War. What I'm saying is that all of the right elements for generating a World War existed for the majority of the 20th century and those elements simply have not existed for almost 2 decades. Now if and when we start to see those elements return, it'll be another matter all together. But as it is right now, the most likely nations to start such a war are China and the US and those two powers, in particular, are economically dependent on each other in a way that makes it very unlikely they'd ever take a direct shot at each other any time soon. Europe definitely isn't going to be starting this one (unlike the last two) because the European Union has made it so that such a war breaking out on their continent again would make all of their current problems worse. So when I hear people talking about the impending WW3 I just can't take it seriously in today's climate.
No offense to anyone who believes it could happen, it probably could eventually. But I've heard people (even in my family) who think that the latest conflict of the month in the middle east is going to jump-start WW3 and most of it comes from people who still think we're in the Cold War. NATO was originally formed to gear up for such a conflict but they haven't dealt with an equivalent alliance for the majority of the lifetimes of the people on this forum.
tl;dr - I'm sorry to say it, but the era we live in right now is probably the closest to world peace we're likely to get before some huge development changes the human experience.