Essays /

Canada Global Middle Power Essay

Essay preview

Middle powers are said to be those states occupying the middle point in a range of bigness to smallness- usually measured by quantifiable attributes as area, population, size, complexity and strength of economy, military capability, and other comparable factors (Cooper, 1993).

Canada is a middle power, as defined by the preceding quotation, but to a greater extent as well. But it wasn't always this way. After World War I, Canada adopted an autonomous, quite isolationist stance characterized by a refusal to engage in collective decision-making and an avoidance of all commitments, possibly fearing another European war. All that changed, however, in the aftermath of the World War that followed.

With the dramatic shift in economic and political systems the alignments, institutions, and the understandings that came with the aftermath of W.W.II withering away, or collapsing, or being dismantled (Cooper, 1993), the Canadian Government sought to reorganize their bureaucracies for the conduct of a more economically oriented foreign policy.

Truth be told Canada's wasn't entirely isolationist before, in fact it had almost always been an open economy dependent on international resource markets (McBride, 2003). Canada was in fact one of the first globalized nations, and Canadian political economists were among the first to seek to understand the impact of global relations on domestic economic and political development. Canada was resource and export dependent and many believed that the lack of economic self-sufficiency drove Canada's need for new national strategies, or polices (McBride, 2003). Derived undoubtedly from Canada's marginal semi-peripheral position within the international political economy (Gordon, 1966).

So after W.W II, Canada's new national polices all sought to facilitate economic development in the context of a relatively trade dependent economy integrated into world markets (Dymond, 2003). That is, these polices spoke to international questions, such as trade and foreign investment. And eventually, as stated previously, this international activity characteristically defined Canada as a 'middle power.'

What is a middle power? Well it's actually more complex than area, population, size, complexity and strength of economy (Cooper, 1993), in fact according to John Holmes it's best to define middle powers on the basis of international function and behavior. Canada, along with countries like Netherlands, Norway, Sweden, actively support the international community through the provision of more nationals to the international service, more military personal to peace operations, and more funds to overseas development assistance through multilateral agencies than other countries (McBride, 2003). Overall these states, or 'middle powers' have both the capacity and the will to play an important role ...

Read more


-1945 1950 1960 1966 1970 1976 1980 1990 1993 1995 2003 21 abil absorb accept access accord account achiev action activ activist actor actual adjust adopt advantag adventur advoc affair aftermath age agenc agenda agent agreement aim align alli almost along altern alway ambassador america american among andrew anoth anticip antipersonnel appear approach area arena aris arm arrang ascend asia aspect aspir assist assum attribut auspic australia autonom avert avoid away barrier basi becom begin behavior belief believ benefici bernard best big bilater bill bipolar border build bureaucraci came campaign canada canadian capabl capac capit carv center certain challeng chang character characterist choos cite citizenship civil close coin cold collaps collect come commerc commit communiti compar competitor complac complex compli compris compromis concentr concept concern conclud conduct consist constant constrain construct contemporari contend context contin continu control convoc cooper could council counterbal countri court creat creation crimin critic cross damag deal debat decis decision-mak deepen defianc defin deliber deliv democraci demonstr depart depend deriv design desir develop deyel didn differ dilemma diminish diplomaci diplomat direct director director-gener disagre dismantl disput dissent distanc doctrin domest domin door dramat draw drop drove dymond earli earn eas easili econom economi economist effort either elect embrac emerg emphas employ engag enhanc enorm entail enter entir environment era especi essenti establish europ european even eventu ever examin except excerpt exercis exert exist experi expertis export extent extern f facilit fact factor fallaci falsehood far favor fear felt fernwood first fiscal fit focus follow forc foreign foremost foresaw forget former function fund futur general global good gordon govern greater greatest growth guid gulf halifax hart hegemoni higgott high higher holm horizon howev human idea ignor ii immedi impact implement implicit import incom increas inde influenc influenti inform initi initiative-ori inspir institut instrument integr intellectu interdepend interest intern interst intim invest involv iraq isol isolationist issu j jeopard john join kim king know korean kosovo lack lakehead land latin leader less liber like likelihood limit lindsey linger littl live locat long low mainten make maneuver mani margin market maxim may mcbride mccleland mean measur mediatori medium medium-term membership mere michael middl middlepowermanship might militari mind mine modest much multilater must mutual nation nation-st navig near near-or need neighbor netherland never new next nich norm norway nossal notion object occupi offer offici often one open oper option order organ orient other ottawa outbreak outlaw outsid overal oversea paradign part partial particip particular partner past paus peac peace-build peacekeep percept perhap period peripher persist person place plan play point polic polici polit poor popul portray posit possibl post postur potenti power preced prefer present press pressur pretens previous primari primarili princip prioriti probabl problem process product profil promis promot protect proud provid provis publish pursu put quantifi question quit quotat rang rather reach reactionari realiti recogn recognit recours redefin reduc refer refus regard regim region reinforc relat relationship reli reloc remain renour reorgan replac resolv resourc respect respons rest result return review richard right rise riski role rout rule safe said say scene seamless second secretariat secur see seek seen self self-suffici selfish semi semi-peripher sens sentiment serious servic share shift short signific size slum small smaller social solut sought spawn specif speech sphere spoke sponsor sprinkl srole stagecraft stanc stander state stephen stewart still strateg strategi strength stress strong suffici suggest superpow support sustain sweden swift system take technic tendenc tension term therefor think third though thought tie time today told toronto toward trade tradit tri triumph trustworthi truth turn two u.n u.s ubc unchart understand undoubt uniqu unit univers unnatur unpopular unrestrain urgenc us usual valu vancouv various ventur view virtuous vision w w.w w.w.i w.w.ii want war wasn water way welfar well wherea wherebi whether wide willing wiser wither within without wood word work world would yet