American National Security and Economic Relations with Canada, 1945-1954

American National Security and Economic Relations with Canada, 1945-1954

American National Security and Economic Relations with Canada, 1945-1954

American National Security and Economic Relations with Canada, 1945-1954

Synopsis

This work is a reassessment of Canada's special relationship with the United States.

Excerpt

Historians writing on twentieth-century American foreign policy have for the most part concentrated on international crises in areas that were geographically distant from the United States. Attention has focused on America’s entry into the First and Second World Wars, the nature of American isolationism, and the foreign economic policy of the interwar period. Since 1945 a good deal of historical scholarship has been concerned with the Soviet-American confrontation along “a series of flashpoints” from Europe to Asia, problems posed by the emergence of left-wing movements of a nationalist character, and the difficulties that the Truman administration faced in mobilizing support at home and abroad for its national security policy. Political scientists and historians studying these events have been unusually prolific, largely because of the controversial nature of the topic, the extensive declassification of relevant government documents, and the effectiveness of the Freedom of Information Act.

Given the ever increasing number of books and articles on modern American foreign policy, it is remarkable that so little attention has been paid to CanadianAmerican relations. Indeed, with the exception of recent studies by historians of Canadian external affairs, no book length monograph has been undertaken by a specialist on American foreign policy. For example, Gabriel Kolko, who taught for many years at York University in Toronto, conspicuously omits any discussion of Canada in his widely read left-revisionist study of America’s role in the reconstruction of the postwar capitalist economy. One book, Gordon T. Stewart’s, The American Response to Canada Since 1776, deals with relations from the American perspective in Washington, but it does not concentrate on the early cold war period. This oversight on the part of American historians may reflect the absence of any territorial or economic disputes along what has frequently been described as the world’s longest undefended border. “Neighbours taken for granted” have generated neither the interest nor the excitement of adversaries or . . .

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