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Question 13: Conclusion

Please respond to the paper as a whole.

 

 

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Contributor:1946
Date: 2003-05-02 02:48:22
Answer:
As activists whose primary focus is to extend and enhance democracy within Canada and throughout the world, we commend our government and Minister Graham for providing democratic input to Canada's foreign policy review. We attended the Vancouver townhall event, and found it to be a well intentioned but frustrating exercise of little apparent value.

We have reviewed the official discussion papers, and see a great deficiency of new thinking. The ad hominem comments relating to our turbulent times are not reflected in any indication of substantive policy changes. Clearly a warmed over rehash of past policy won't well serve Canada or the World.

The World is at a pivotal point in history -- due primarily to American unilateralism, rising world-wide anti-Americanism, European power brokering, totalitarian Islamic fundamentalism, Islamic suicidal terrorism, the rising risks of weapons of mass destruction in the hands of totalitarian states and/or suicidal terrorists, and globalization.

There may never have been a more challenging or more auspicious opportunity for Canada to assert not just moral authority but pragmatic and honest world leadership! No other country is in a position to play the pivotal role which Canada could play -- if it has the vision and integrity to do so.

The USA is of course our greatest friend and most difficult problem. Americans needs us to speak truth to them -- but also to stand by their side, even when their positions may be dubious at best.

Canada and only Canada can be the vital link between the USA and Europe. But we must be prepared to equally expose the hypocrisy and duplicity of both. The War on Iraq revealed the lack of integrity of all parties -- the USA was not primarily motivated by any of its professed pretexts, Europe was not primarily opposed to this war because of its professed principles, and Canada was misguided and duplicitous in pretending that the UN could provide legitimacy to a war without just cause.

Canada's commitment to 'multilateralism' is a fundamentally inadequate substitute for integrity. This is not to say that multilateralism is undesirable -- but it is to declare that the present severe and structural defects of the institutions of multilateralism need to be exposed and corrected before commitment to them as our guiding policy should be contemplated.

In particular, the World desperately needs the UN to be radically reformed as a democratic organization -- or replaced by one that is. It should no longer be acceptable to the peoples of the World that the primary body of global governance is undemocratically composed, dominated by a Security Council which can be subverted by political prostitution and/or the veto of major powers, and committees chaired by representatives of totalitarian rogue states.

The time has come for a World body that includes only the democratically elected members of the democratic nations, on some reasonable basis of proportionality, with no executive council or veto powers. And the time has come for the democratic nations of the world to commit to a campaign to bring freedom and democracy to all oppressed nations -- by ridding the world of dictatorships within a generation or so.

Such a bold humanitarian program is eminently feasible -- at very small risk and costs -- until the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction into the hands of dictatorships. But it could only be accomplished under American leadership -- with the full support and participation of the democratic nations of the World. As the USA has demonstrated in Iraq, it possesses the power to impose regime change very swiftly with fewer civilian casualties than a major terrorist event -- even on a militaristic nation if it is fighting with obsolete weapons.

We see this as an essential mission of our times to participate as a world community, under American leadership, to build a world of greater freedom, prosperity and security for all. We see this as the best way to make the world a better and safer place, the most effective way to deal with the increasing problems of oppression and terrorism, and a unifying goal that will facilitate cooperation and harmony throughout the world.

We believe this to be an urgent mission with a very limited window of opportunity given the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction and the increasing danger of these being acquired by ruthless dictators and suicidal terrorists.

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Jeff & Diana Jewell
North Vancouver BC
604-987-8296
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