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Official Declaration of the Formation of the Ontario Combined Armed Forces

 

OTTAWA - Prime Minister Hudson, along with Minister of Defense Robert Penner, announced the formation and formalization of the Ontario Combined Armed Forces, to be the combined military forces of the United Republics of Ontario.  The Ontario Combined Armed Forces is reported to be comprised of the Ontario Defense Force, the standing ground army, and the Ontario Air Force (OAF).  Plans for a naval force have been put on hold for the time being as other issues are considered with the formation of the nation.  It has been determined that conscription will not be utilized and that the Ontario Combined Armed Forces (OCAF), headed by the Combined Armed Forces Command (CAFCOM), will be a fully volunteer, professional armed force.  There is currently no legislation for a potential draft on the table, and it is expected that such legislation will not be coming in the foreseeable future.

 

Also note that, as voted upon in the pleibiscites on sovereignty, the military is under civilian control, with the Office of Prime Minister holding the title and powers of Commander in Chief.

 

*CLASSIFIED*

 

List of Current Assets

 

Ontario Defense Force

 

Headquarters:  Ottawa, St. Lawrence Republic, URO

Largest Base:  Fort Niagara, Niagara-on-the-Lake, Niagara Republic, URO (75,306)

Total Standing Soldier Count:  122,336

Standard Issue Weapon:  M16 Family of assault rifles

Total Tank Force:  350

 

Specialization of platoons and creation of special operations branches forthcoming.

 

Ontario Air Force

 

Headquarters:  Ottawa, St. Lawrence Republic, URO

Air Field:  Fort Niagara Air Field, Niagara-on-the-Lake, Niagara Republic, URO

Main Fighter Model: F-15E Strike Eagle

Fighter Squadrons: 15

 

Main Strategic Bomber: B-1 Lancer

Strategic Bomber Squadrons: 5

 

Addition of more specialized and varied aircraft to be discussed at a later date.

 

 

 

 

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Private, in the office of the Prime Minister

 

As PM Hudson was going through some papers about the logistics of a national park system, Minister of Foreign Affairs Henry Thomas and Minister of Defense Robert Penner walked through the door.  Hudson removed his feet from his desk and sat up, tossing the folder he was reading on the desk's surface.

 

"Minister's, thank you for taking time from your other projects to meet with me, have a seat."

 

"Thank you, Prime Minister," replied Minister Thomas as he sat on one of the couches arrayed before the Prime Minister's desk.  Minister Penner nodded and took a seat in a chair. 

 

"I'm sure you are both aware of why you are here, the situation in Western Canada."

 

"Yes sir," replied Penner.  "What are your thoughts on the matter, and what can we do to help?"

 

"It isn't an entirely pressing concern.  What's taking place is thousands of miles away.  A Japanese incursion is slightly unsettling, but I must admit I am not aware of any possible connections the old Albertan Domain could have shared with them.  Of course, the situation requires no invlovlement from us and I can't even say which side would be better suited to handle.  What I do know is that the Americans have shown a desire to influence the areas of Canada, and have done so in agreeable fashion, but the result of their diplomatic meeting with Tianxia and Japan isn't really our concern.  In fact what I wanted to meet with you over was more of a tangent off of this situation that directly related.  Minister Penner, can you give me a report on the formation of the military?"

 

"It's coming along smoothly, Prime Minister,"  Penner replied, "After the opening of recruiting, we are nearing 100,000 recruits, with more coming every day.  I expect we will reach our departmental goal of 120,000 soon.  Training has already begun on the first recruit classes and factories have begun to produce tanks.  We are contracting aerospace companies on the construction of our fighters and bombers.  The special forces will be formed once enough recruits have graduated, at which point we can hand select candidates."

 

"Very good, thank you Minister Penner.  It's a rather large force for our nation in practical terms, but if there are volunteers for their country, we will accept," the Prime Minister answered.  "Minister Thomas, what is your expert opinion on the situation in Western Canada, from a foreign affairs standpoint?"

 

Thomas sighed placidly, "Well, Prime Minister, we don't have an official view on the matter.  Of course we won't be interfering even in a diplomatic sense, we have neither the means nor I think the political desire even to, but better to discuss such matters."

 

"I agree," replied Hudson, "How are our other efforts going?"

 

"We have sent out feelers for diplomacy, our main goals now are to secure a consistent deal for passage through the St. Lawrence to the Atlantic.  This would normalize our domestic markets on a number of goods, and indirectly certain services, which would be a great stabilizing force for our economy, especially in its nubile state."

 

"Yes, yes.  But I'm interested in your personal opinion on the first matter as well.  Both of yours."

 

Hudson looked to Penner to answer first, which he did, "I myself, I would rather North American lands be administered by North American governments.  This incursion is very disconcerting to me personally."

 

"And you, Minister Thomas?"

 

Sighing again, Thomas replied, "If we were in any more position to matter on the subject I would find it a lot more troubling.  I would say the Commonwealth's requisition of Saskatchewan for protectorate status provides a buffer to any Japanese influence this far East anyway."

 

Hudson continued to push, "I am asking...for your personal opinion Minister.  I appointed you to your post for your diplomatic skills, as well as your personal judgement.  Now, I would appreaciate knowing what you think."

 

"Of course, Prime Minister.  I apologize," Thomas replied contritely, "I would feel more comfortable if the American Commonwealth were charged with administration of the territories.  We know about them, we have had more diplomatic engagement with them, though simply by virtue of them granting us sovereignty, we are just in the dark on how the Japanese work or how to treat with them at the current time."

 

"Well, simply looking at the current state of affairs, there are many colonies in the Americas in possession of foreign powers," Hudson said, almost directed at himself, "Another would not be, I think, in the best interest of the North American peoples.  I'm not elected to be Prime Minister of the whole damn continent however, so maybe I shouldn't focus so much on this.  The powers that be will sort this out, and we will continue to look after our own people.  I'll take your opinions under advisement in case future situations are more pertinent.  Thank you gentlemen."

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Ontario Broadcasting Corporation

 

Parliament Hands Down Several Important Pieces of Legislation

 

OTTAWA - Currently working on a comprehensive social welfare bill as well as a universal healthcare bill, Parliament handed down two bills signed into law regarding social issues within Ontario.  Below, the two are highlighted.

 

Equal Marriage Act

 

The Equal Marriage Act is landmark legislation pertaining mainly to marriage certification for homosexual marriages.  The law provides for federal recognition of same-sex marriages, though does not specify that recognition at the republic level.  However, none of the republics currently have marriage laws for themselves, allowing the Equal Marriage Act to apply to all citizens in the country.  This in effect, fully legalizes same-sex marriage throughout the nation and includes provisions that define a marriage as between two people, providing the same benefits to both heterosexual and homosexual unions.

 

Marijuana Legalization Act

 

The Marijuana Legalization Act takes the decriminalization of marijuana and expands it to full legalization.  It also provides for forms of licensing for the production and sale of the plant.  The provisions laid out construct a system almost identical to the sale and production of alcohol.  Constraints have also been put on consumption in the sense that operating a motor vehicle while under the influence of THC will be considered driving while intoxicated.  Laws regarding DUI, DWI, minor in possession and public drunkeness have been expanded by the act to include both alcohol and marijuana, making the laws previously applied to alcohol also being applied to marijuana consumption.  The only exception being that the legal age for purchasing and consuming alcohol will remain at 19, while the purchasing and consumption age for marijuana will be 21.

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