Staples’ Theory
How the military tries to manipulate public opinion

How the military tries to manipulate public opinion

My interview with Ottawa Citizen journalist David Pugliese

Hot on the heels of the massive $8 Billion boost to Canadian military spending, I speak with Ottawa Citizen reporter David Pugliese about his experience reporting on the Department of National Defence.

Weaponization of public affairs by the Canadian Forces

We discuss the concept of "weaponization of public affairs" in the context of the Canadian Forces. David explains that the term refers to the strategic use of public affairs, including propaganda, to influence the Canadian public's attitudes on specific issues. This approach was initiated by former Chief of Defence Staff Jonathan Vance, leading to concerns about the military's role in collecting intelligence on social media and the Black Lives Matter movement. David's reporting on these issues raised questions about the Canadian government's use of military resources to manipulate public opinion.

David Pugliese speaks with Steve Staples

Military monitoring of Steven Staples

At the end of the interview, we touch on an incident in the past when the Canadian Forces was tracking my public speeches. Dave recounts how he discovered that the military was trying to cover up its surveillance operation on me and how he obtained a military report on my activities that had been circulated at the highest levels of the National Defence’s HQ.

Journalism's future and hopeful trends

Finally, we discuss the state of journalism and the future of the profession. David shares his hope for the future, citing the rise of social media and the emergence of new, progressive online publications as positive developments.

I hope you enjoy this – my first podcast. Thanks to David Pugliese, Wade Benson for his original music, and Annelise Staples for the podcast artwork.

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Steve and little Nessie

Staples’ Theory
Policy analyst and author Steve Staples takes a critical look at national and international issues.
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