Canada and us defence relationship

Journal of Military and Strategic Studies

canada and us defence relationship

Background. The United States is Canada's most important ally and defence partner. Defence and security relations between the two countries. Traditional Canadian anxiety about defence relations with the United States has been and remains charac- terized by relative clarity on the part of military. The Canada-US Defence Relationship in the 21st Century1. Andrew Richter. Canada and the United States have been close defence allies for 70 years. That.

As like-minded Allies and close operational partners, Canada and U.

canada and us defence relationship

From joint training exercises to personnel exchanges, strategic policy discussions, and operational cooperation, our countries share a broad-based, dynamic, and mutually beneficial defence relationship. The principal bilateral defence forums, arrangements and agreements with the U. Permanent Joint Board on Defence PJBD — established in to discuss and advise on defence policy issues related to continental defence and security.

The Canadian and U.

The Canada-U.S. defence relationship: nostalgia ain't what it used to be - Policy Options

Military Cooperation Committee — established in and meets bi-annually as the primary strategic link between Canadian and U. The Combined Defence Plan — synchronizes military efforts from both countries into one coherent bilateral military defence plan.

Civil Assistance Plan — signed Februaryand renewed in Januaryto facilitate the support of military members from one nation to the armed forces of the other nation in support of civilian authorities during an emergency such as a natural disaster.

canada and us defence relationship

At any given time, there are more than CAF members serving in the U. Approximately half are committed to the NORAD mission, while the remainder serve as liaison and exchange officers, or as students pursuing post-graduate military or civilian academic studies. In addition, more than U. Canada and the U. Both countries are committed to ensuring that NATO remains active and engaged with the modern, flexible, and agile capabilities it needs to defend the populations and territories of its members and deal with the challenges of the 21st century.

At the Canadian Embassy in Washington, D. In support of the unique Canada-U. Virgin Islands, are also included. Coast Guard, the Department of State, and federal agencies that share similar mission objectives, including the Drug Enforcement Administration and U.

Customs and Border Protection. Neighbouring nations, such as Canada, are key partners in planning and contingency operations. It collects, processes, and disseminates counter-drug information for inter-agency operations dedicated to interdicting the flow of illicit drugs.

We ask American conservatives what they think of Canada-U.S. relations

The CAF remains committed to working with the U. Armed Forces with a unique maritime law enforcement mission, with jurisdiction in both domestic and international waters. Its roles include maritime homeland security, maritime law enforcement, and search and rescue. A number of agreements and arrangements govern the military-to-military relationship between Canada and the U. The following is an overview of the key agreements or bodies that shape, guide and inform that relationship and joint defence.

It continues to provide critical senior military and diplomatic contact, with its meetings serving as a window to Canada-U. Here is how a high-ranking Canadian public servant gave early expression, during the same era, to the other side of the Canadian expectation: We should be careful not to transfer the suspi- cions and touchiness and hesitations of yester- year from London to Washington.

Backgrounder | The Canada-U.S. Defence Relationship

Nor should we get unduly bothered over all the pronouncements of journalists and generals, or politicians which we do not like, though there may be some, indeed, are some, on which we have the right to express our views … More importantly we must convince the United States by deeds rather than merely by words that we are in fact, pulling our weight in this international team … The diplomat was, of course, Lester Pearson, and he spoke these words long before becoming external affairs minister or prime minister of Canada.

Even in the s and the heat of the Cold War, there was a sense that the Canadian- U. Denis Stairs, a distinguished scholar of Canadian foreign policy, put it this way some three decades ago: This sense of freedom without consequences was of course shattered briefly when the Kennedy administration actively conspired to bring down the Diefenbaker government in over the Bomarc missile dispute.

canada and us defence relationship

Many of the forces that drive the intellectual roots of the present admin- istration can be found in the Trudeau years" during which our present Prime Minister served in many portfolios.

In more recent times, Derek Burney, a former Canadian ambassador in Washington and chief of staff to the Prime Minister during the free- trade negotiations in the mids, summed up the contemporary relationship during his time this way: We may want many of the advantages of our proximity but are leery of being consumed by it.

We want our relationship to be friendly, coopera- tive but not too cooperative.

The Canada-U.S. Defence Relationship

We want Canada to have a distinctive role in world affairs, a distinc- tion which for some is determined solely by the degree of differentiation with the U. The long-held Canadian desire to be within the American defence perimeter but not the American policy perimeter is historic and tradi- tional.

It not only shapes the political culture of our foreign and defence relations but also the conflicted sense of opportunity vs. No more recent or relevant indication of the core ambivalence can be found than the debate over National Missile Defense.

Canada was, as so often, caught between a desire to move President Bush off NMD and a realistic concern about the costs to Canadian military and industrial priori- ties of being outside the circle. As is usually the case when hard reality con- fronts the shibboleths of wishful thinking and nostalgia, the events of September 11 have forced the beginning of a rethink of Canada-U.

It is clear that evolving homeland defence plans in the United States will impact directly on the defence relationship.

Canadian-American Defence Relations

Canada simply cannot afford to be outside the perimeter, even though the terms and conditions of that perimeter are not yet fully knowable. The Canadian deployment of a naval task force clearly benefits from interoperability exer- cises and training between the two navies that have gone on for some time. Canadians have done intelligence and related training at U.

The past does give us some insights in this respect, however. In the end, even when there were difficulties between Canada and the United States on issues like Bomarc nuclear warheads, America has ultimately prevailed" especially in matters of continental defence. In many instances in the past, Canada has been able to ignore the American lead on foreign policy and defence and to do so with relative impunity.

canada and us defence relationship

On the issue of homeland defence, however, that option is not likely to exist. The links between homeland defence, border issues and economic outcomes are simply too tightly woven. If the enemies cannot strike back at the U. Therefore for Canada, as for no other ally, homeland defense becomes a major issue. Put bluntly … where is the perimeter of the American homeland?

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Is it the same as North American Homeland? That is the issue we will have to face. Moreover, as we remain active abroad as part of that community that the U.

canada and us defence relationship

In return for being per cent onside relative to military operations abroad, Canada hopes to be inside the perimeter both with respect to homeland defence policy and the economic and strategic issues and challenges that emerge as part of that process. Nostalgia for past episodes of cooperation with America"in the Cold War, in Korea, and in other hot spots"will inform the spirit Canada brings to this arena.