Good neighbour/Bad neighbour

Good neighbour/Bad neighbour

Canada stands uniquely positioned in the world. As neighbours with the
United States, the greatest military power in today’s world, we share
the world’s longest undefended border. We also share a longstanding,
generally friendly, and mutually beneficial relationship.

Canadians have always been vitally concerned with
the political climate in the United States. Whatever changes occur
there affect Canadians nearly as much as Americans. In general,
Canadians are supportive of US actions and are conciliatory in our

That is not to say that Canadians are, in general, on board with all
the things the United States does. We are a distinct and sovereign
nation, with our own laws and culture. Canada is far more likely to
align with global standards and ideals than is the US. Also. we are less of
a corporate culture, and appear to have a better separation of church and state. Historically we have been the peace-makers rather than the
war-makers. Our diplomats have a long track record of defusing
international tensions, and our troops have been respected as

Given our sovereign status,and international obligations, Canada has both the right and the
obligation to enforce our own laws as well as international laws on
Canadian soil. To this end there have been requests made to law
enforcement bodies in Canada for charges to be laid against members of
the Bush Administration. In response to former US Vice President
Richard Cheney’s announced visit to Vancouver, US-based Human Rights
Watch requested that Canada investigate his role in torture, and lay
charges against him. And most recently, the imminent arrival of former
US president George Bush in Canada has led to legal groups in Canada
and the US (US-based Center for Constitutional Rights) filing a
70-page indictment

against Mr. Bush for his promotion of torture practices by US personnel.

 These actions by Canadians are partly our own, partly in accord with international actions, and partly in conjunction and support of American efforts which are not possible in the current domestic climate of the United States.

The government of Canada will likely try to block this indictment in an effort to avoid embarrassing the United States. whether this is possible remains to be seen. Canada’s courts are very strong and generally independent of the Executive branch. The best option would have Mr. Bush announce the cancellation of his visit. However, coming so close on the heels of the unwelcome Cheney visit, this almost appears provocative.

Here is a link explaining the American “Border Fence”. it is scary.


5 responses to “Good neighbour/Bad neighbour

  1. Hello, South of the border, practically no one is aware that there is a border fence discussion concerning Canada. Americans have no interest to intrude on Canadians for anything, i believe
    this is more a story about Canadian and American bureaucrats puffing up their chests. We (Americans) do have an immigration problem on both north and south boundaries. Other countries to the south have taken advantage of our welcome mat to the point that we now have a two language country.

    Regarding Canada as a peacekeeping force rather than being similar to Americans, I don’t quite understand this provision? You opposed the war in Iraq like most Americans, but CA has done nothing to create a solution and you are actively involved in Afganistan. Canadians working quietly in the oil industry had to be rescued from Libya (by Americans I believe) as they conducted their big oil corporate activities there. I think Canada is more similar to observers of a car accident, standing near the wreckage and commenting on the quality of work the firemen and rescuers provide than being active participants in the world. When in the last five years has CA put itself out there in defense of another little country? Haiti, I bet you have 200 people there max.

    I also doubt many people of CA have encountered people speaking or writing disparagingly of them as Canadians do when commenting on articles in the CBC webpage.

    Maybe if the USA restricted its population to say 35 million, we could appear more honorable, less crazy and more mature like Canada. But to do so we would have turn away people we like from all over the world (like CA) and it is not in out nature. Sorry to be so frank, but I think it needed to be said. I wish you all well, . Joe Graham

  2. Thanks for posting the link here. I can assure you won’t find more than two or three in a thousand citizens of the United States who would agree that there needs to be any enhanced security zone for threats from Canada. That explains the reference to this new program in an environmental impact statement rather than an open announcement. I’ve spent time in BC and Montreal and found both ends of Canada friendly and delightful. I look forward to more travel there and hope that people coe to their senses as to the real threat to this country – poverty, unemployment, pollution, and a, how shall I say it, less than adequate ruling class. Cheers!

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