Canada among nations, 2004: Setting priorities straight
Much of the recent public debate about Canada's foreign policy has focused on issues of resources and management of Canada-U.S. relations. Groups such as Canadian Defence and Foreign Affairs Institute and the Public Policy Forum have issued reports calling for an increase in defence spending, a comprehensive review of foreign policy, and a concentration on Canada-U.S. relations. Prime Minister Paul Martin has moved swiftly to restructure the foreign policy machinery of government. Among his key initiatives are the creation of a new Cabinet Committee on Canada-U.S. Relations and the appointment of a parliamentary secretary to the prime minister for Canada-U.S. relations. Mr Martin gave foreign policy a prominent place in his acceptance speech to the Liberal leadership convention. "Like other countries," he said, "we must come to grips with the fact that the United States has emerged as the world's lone superpower. We need a proud partnership based on mutual respect with our closest friend and nearest neighbour. Two nations with many shared values but each acting independently." In one of his first acts as prime minister, Mr Martin initiated a "joint, systematic defence and foreign policy review." The last foreign policy review was conducted in 1995 and there has been no thoroughgoing, decisive, public reconsideration of the significance of the terrorist attacks against the United States, the violent response in U.S. policy and action, wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, tests and failures of the United Nations Security Council, and the transformed quality of relations along the Canada-U.S. border. Still less has there been any open, extensive, government-led reassessment of the obligations of continental defence or the new and future accommodations required to realign Canada's relations with the United States and the rest of the world. Policy initiatives have instead looked temporizing and partial. Canada Among Nations, 2004 looks to the challenges of charting a strategic course for Canada in a turbulent and insecure world. Contributors identify the most important areas for effective policy making in the twenty-first century, among them the need to integrate diplomacy, aid, and defence in a world that is increasingly dominated by regional powers, state failure and terrorism. This year's contributors include prominent academics, practitioners, journalists, and members of the NGO community.
Carment, D, Hampson, F.O, & Hillmer, N. (2005). Canada among nations, 2004: Setting priorities straight.