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Question 13: Conclusion

Please respond to the paper as a whole.



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Date: 2003-05-01 19:47:46
As an introduction, I was thankful to get the opportunity to speak for one minute at Ryerson last Friday. However, I was disappointed that my theme "an independent Canadian foreign policy" was not addressed by Bill Graham at all.

1. Canadians believe in cooperation, not just competition; therefore, a multilateral approach to international relations is a necessity. We should increase our trade in the spirit of partnership and cooperation. Our trading relations should not provide for overriding powers for foreign investors, but instead would preserve the absolute right for all levels of government to legislate and regulate on behalf of their citizens. We are competent at working with other nations and organizations rather than imposing our ways or just selling our goods and services. We need to develop creative and distinct approaches to develop an independent foreign policy.

3. Strengthened. The predominance of a junior relationship with United States has severely compromised the development of an independent foreign policy. Canada has to avoid providing grounds for the perception that we are like U.S. We have other qualities and deeds to offer.

4. It is senseless for us to pretend that our sparse military capacity will enable us to do more than protect our homeland and contribute to peacekeeping missions. Intelligence gathering, yes, as an alternative to providing military strength. We need to develop our own such resources so that we are not unduly influenced by the Intelligence results of U.S. which often are based upon a different rationale than ours - to be a great power and re-shape the world.

6. Yes, once again, because we are not a military power yet we have much to offer other nations. We could assist with democratic reform because of our federal experience. We can help developing nations develop an economy rather than encourage the private sector to privatize their essential services.

7. We need to increase our relations with Latin and South America, including Cuba. It would be preferable to develop bilateral trade agreements instead of a FTAA dominated by U.S. and multinational corporations, all for the purpose of control and power. We have to present ourselves as a pleasant alternative to U.S. which is a great power and needs our help to develop a trusting relationship.

9. Yes. We need to diversify the way we conduct business and cooperation in the world. These countries need to learn from a successful, peaceful western nation.

10. Absolutely. We must avoid military commitments that are not for clear self-defence because we can't undertake what we cannot accomplish. Instead we must accept the lead in organizing ad hoc non-military alliances and try to resolve international conflicts e.g. with Iraq. Also, Canada can help convince similarly minded nations to be more proactive and prevent potential conflicts from exploding. We do this at home.

12. We need to have exchange programs where we do not just export our service industries and infer that our values and experiences are preferable. We realize the difficulty of maintaining our culture when swamped with foreign entertainment and even nationalism from south of the border.

Thank you for considering my thoughts. I would appreciate the opportunity to expand several of my suggestions. Keep in touch.

Roy Brady
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