There are a number of tragic and devastating conflicts going on around the world but none of them have been called the war to end all wars since World War I and II. In terms of wars of that level, Canada has enjoyed a relative degree of peace. But World War III could happen someday, and that's exactly why we are training for it now.
Currently, in Europe, the Canadian Military is joining with thousands of other troops from NATO, our official international alliance. Exactly 31 countries from the alliance are going to prepare and train for what would essentially be a World War III scenario.
The multi-national program is called Exercise Trident Juncture 2018. It is a practice scenario in response to a NATO Article 5 situation, meaning an instance where one NATO member is attacked, so all other allies come together in defence.
The main goal of the program is to ensure that if or when the time comes for all these nations to work together, there's a clear plan and outline for what role each country will play. In terms of this exercise, Canada has contributed 2000 troops, four Navy ships, and 11 Air Force planes.
Canada was one of the founding nations of NATO, which was formed after World War 2. Other alliance members are the UK, the USA, Itlay, Germany, France, Poland, Spain, and most recently Montenegro. While there are other members one notable country not on the list is Russia.
In fact, many believe that this particular exercise is meant to send a message to Russia directly. While none of the nations involved have specifically named Russia, the Russian Embassy has called the exercise anti-Russian.
Russian officials have even gone on to suggest that this show of NATO's power by the Russian border will only heighten tensions in the region. They also say that their country will take retaliatory measures if necessary.
The exercise is taking place in Norway, starting today and ending on November 7th. It is the largest military exercise by NATO since the Cold War is often said to have taken place from 1985 to 1991. Like this exercise, the Cold War was also mainly between NATO allies and Russia, which was then the Soviet Union.
Source: Government of Canada