Friends2 Essay

This essay has a total of 1288 words and 6 pages.


In 1970 the Trudeau government issued a major statement defining its foreign policy. Three
primary policy aims were presented: preservation of Canada as an independent political
entity, maintenance of expanding prosperity, and constructive contribution to human needs.

In 1970-72 Canada scaled back its contribution to NATO, reducing the number of its
military and civilian personnel and military bases in Europe. Canada established
diplomatic relations with the People's Republic of in October 1970; ambassadors were
exchanged the following year, and an exchange of consuls and most-favoured-nation trading
arrangements were agreed upon in 1973. Trudeau's attitude toward the Cold War and the
Soviet Union was decidedly ambiguous for a prime minister of a country that had been a
charter member of NATO and was intimately tied to the United States in Norad. He improved
relations with the Soviets at first, believing that closer ties with the Soviet Union
would restore balance to Canada's international position and deemphasize Canada's role as
a partisan of the West. But at the same time, Trudeau did not contest fundamental U.S.
policy regarding the Soviet Union, the Middle East, and even the war in Southeast Asia.
Despite Trudeau's cautious and skeptical view of the United States, he was ultimately
respectful of the realities of American power. Canada also sought closer relations with
the European Economic Community and played a more active role in the United Nations.
During the 1970s Canada extended its fishing rights and reaffirmed Canadian sovereignty in
its Arctic islands and their icebound waters.

The goal of protecting Canada's economy led to adjustments in relations with the United
States. In 1970 Canada increased the price of petroleum and natural gas sold to the United
States, and in 1974 a plan to gradually reduce those sales and end them by 1982 was
announced. This action was taken to protect domestic supplies of fossil fuels in the face
of increasing prices of imported oil used in the eastern provinces. In 1978 Canada
initiated purchases of new airplanes and other military equipment to better defend its
borders and fulfill its international commitments.

In accordance with the third aim of its foreign policy--to contribute to human
needs--Trudeau's government expanded Canada's foreign aid efforts and pursued a policy
promoting the international control of nuclear weaponry. Canada undertook efforts to
control pollution in its coastal waters, and in 1972 Canada and the United States signed
the Great Lakes Water Quality Agreement to control pollution of the lakes.

In foreign policy, Trudeau's approach to the Americans and the Cold War changed little
after the Clark interregnum. In July 1983, despite his professed disdain for the U.S.
preoccupation with the Cold War, Trudeau's government gave the United States permission to
test cruise missile guidance systems in the Canadian north, over the strenuous objections
of peace groups and environmentalists. In late 1983, however, possibly to balance his
decision on the cruise missiles, Trudeau mounted a well-publicized global peace mission to
the capitals of countries possessing nuclear weapons to press for greater international
cooperation on nuclear arms control and reduction. He had little success; U.S. President
Ronald Reagan and British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher were clearly annoyed by his

THE ECONOMIST magazine has an unusually clever cover this week, titled ''America's
World.'' It shows a distorted world map, with an overly large, continental United States
filling up all of the centre space, and the other six continents shrunk down to
microscopic size and pushed to the margins of the globe.

The one country besides the U.S. that benefits from this fanciful exercise is Canada. As
part of the North American continent, our size expands automatically with that of the U.S.

In the editorial accompanying this cover, The Economist comments that the U.S. ''bestrides
the world like a colossus,'' in every dimension from the economic and financial and
political to the cultural and technological.

All true. What the magazine didn't add - unsurprisingly, since it's scarcely of
world-shattering importance - is that the very fact that the U.S. is now the world's only
super-power, the ''indispensable'' nation that overshadows all the rest, means that Canada
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