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Our Oldest Good Neighbor 

EM 47 



Prepared for 
The United States Armed Forces 



This pamphlet is one of n series made available by the War De- 
partment under the series title Gl lioundtable. As the general title 
indicates, Gl lioundtable pamphlets provide material which informa- 
tion-education officers may use in conducting: group discussions or 
forums as part of an off-fluty education program, and which operators 
of Armed Forces Radio Service outlets may use in preparing- Gl Radio 
Koundtablc discussion broadcasts. 

The content of this pamphlet has been prepared by the Historical 
Service Board of the American Historical Association. Each pam- 
phlet in the scries has only one purpose: to provide factual informa- 
tion and balanced arguments as a basis for discussion of all sides 
of the question. It is not to be inferred that the War Department 
endorses any one of the particular views presented. 

Specific suggestions for the discussion or forum lender who plant* 
to use this pamphlet will he found nu page U.S. 

Washington 25, D. C, 14 Jan. 1946. 

|A.G. 300.7 (14 Jan. l*U6t.J 

EM 47, Gl Koundtablc : Canada: Our Oldest Good Neighbor 
Current War Department instructions authorize the requi- 
sition of additional copies of this pamphlet on the basis of 
one copy for each 25 military personnel, within limits of the 
available supply. Additional copies should be requisitioned 
from the United States Armed Forces Institute, Madison -I, 
Wisconsin, or the nearest Oversea Branch. 

Distributed for use in the educational and informational programs of 
the Navy, Marine Corps, and Coast Guard. This distribution is not 
to be construed as an endorsement by the Navy Department of the 
statements" contained therein. 

Educational Services Section, Standards and Curriculum Divi- 
sion, Training, Bureau ok Naval Personnel, Washington 25, D. C. 
(Copies for Navy personnel are to be requisitioned from Educational 
Services Section.) 

Education SECTION, Welfare Division. Special Services Branch. 
United States Marine Corps, Washington 25, D. C. (Distributed 
to Marine Corps personnel by Special Services Branch. Additional 
copies, or information, may be obtained from unit Special Services 

Training Division, Office OF Personnel, Coast Guard Headquar- 
ters, WASHINGTON 25, I). C. (Copies for Coast Guard personnel 
should be nquisitioned from the Commandant (PT), U. S. Coast 
Guard Headquarters, Washington 25, D. C.) 


Our Oldest Good Neighbor 


How important is Conndo to the United States? 1 

Is Canada disunited by its geography? 5 

Is Here a deep split between French and 

English Canada? 17 

How does Canada govern itself — or does Britain do It? 27 

How do the United States and Canada get along?.... 36 

What hind of economy does Canada have? 41 

What was Canada's role in World War II? 51 

To the discussion leader 53 

For further reading 57 

Other Gl Rouodtable subjects 59 












t* k 



Do YOU RKMRMrek how the various parts of the British 
Empire were always shown in red in your school geogra- 
phies? Do you rememl>er that by far the largest splotch 
of red on the map of the world lay just to the north of the 
United States? 

Or were you more impressed by the way the Dominion 
of Canada showed up on the map of the United States — 
as a blank white space from the (Jrcat Lakes and the 4!)th 
parallel up to the top of the map? 

Many Americans, unfortunately, have been nearly as 
void of knowledge about Canada as that blank white space 
on the map. As a nation we have been astonishingly igno- 
rant of the country in which we have the largest stake, the 
country that lies closest to us, and the country whose people 
are most nearly related to us. 

Hoir great is our stake in Canada? 

It may surprise you to know how big our economic interest 
in Canada is. The latest prewar figures show that our 
trade with Canada, import as well as export, was much 
greater than our trade with any other country in the world. 
It was greater than (Mir trade with all the republics of 
South America put together. 

The latest prewar figures also show that several times 
more American capital was invested in Canada than in any 
other foreign country. It was more than in the whole of 
South America. The depression proved our investments in 
Canada to be the soundest of all our foreign investments. 
Perhaps if they had not been so sound, if we had lost more 
in Canada, we might have been less indifferent to that coun- 
try and less inclined to take it for granted. 

Canada is also important to us for reasons of security — 
as the United States is to Canada. That was why, in August 
1938, President Roosevelt told a cheering audience in Kings- 
ton, Ontario, that the people of the United States would 
"not stand idly by if the domination of Canadian soil is 
threatened" by an aggressor. That was why, two years 
later at Ogdensburg, he and Prime Minister Mackenzie 
King agreed to form the Permanent Joint Defense Board 
for the common defense of the northern half of this conti- 
nent — in other words, our first permanent defensive alli- 
ance. That was why we built the Alaska Highway, cooper- 
ated with the Canadians in enlarging their Northwest Stag- 
ing Route for air transport to Alaska, and established air 
patrols over the region of Hudson Bay. 

For the right to have military installations in the Do- 
minion during the war, we promised to turn them over to 
the Canadian government afterward. But these, with the 
exception of the highway, were not to be free gifts to our 
neighbor. Canada has already purchased all the perma- 
nent air facilities, and the other American installations are 
to be sold after a joint appraisal by the two governments. 

The coming of air power has given Canada a most stra- 
tegic position. Through Canada pass the shortest flying 
routes from our country to Europe and Asia, the two con- 
tinents that contain most of the world's population, wealth, 
and power. 

How cloBB are we to Canada? 

Canada is by far the closest of all our neighbors. Our Mexi- 
can boundary i.s less than half the length of our Canadian 
boundary. Not counting Alaska, the United States touches 
Canada along an unbroken line of 3,987 miles. 

Most of the Mexican people live far from our border, 
whereas most Canadians dwell right beside it. The large 
majority of the Canadian population is concentrated along 
the southern edge of the Dominion — within a hundred miles 
of our country. 

In still other ways the Canadians are closer to us than 
are any other people in the world. No other people are so 
like us in character. The Anglo-Canadians speak the same 
language — even the same slang. Canadian English is Amer- 
ican English, not English English. The people of Canada 
are descended from much the same stock — half from the 
British Isles and half from continental Europe, Canadians 
and Americans have grown up together in the same environ- 
ment. Either side along the boundary, from the Atlantic to 
the Pacific, the pattern of daily life is much the same. 

Not only are the Canadians more like us, but they also 
like us more than do any other people. The reason is that 
they understand us much better. On the whole, they know 
us as we have not begun to know them, and they are in- 
clined to resent our indifference. 

They also criticize us quite freely, and often very justly. 
But this is the natural reaction of a small nation living 
under the shadow of a big one. It is also the kind of criti- 
cism one member of a family levels against another — whom 
he would leap to defend if he heard an outsider say tht 
same thing. Most Canadians instinctively do that when 
they have visitors from the outside world, even from Eng- 
land, who cast reflections on the United States and things 

To and fro across the border 

Until the 1930's when immigration was slowed by the de- 
pression, an almost continuous movement to and fro across 
the border wove the two peoples together. 

This intermingling of population between Canada and 
the United States has been much greater and has been go- 
ing on much longer than most of us realize. It began even 
before the American Revolution. By that time so many 
New Knglanders had migrated to Nova Scotia, which was 
then their frontier, that it was practically a subcolony 
of New England. Immediately after the Revolution many 
more New Knglanders — called Tories by us and loyalists 
by Canadians — settled in what are now the Maritime 
Provinces of the Dominion. These Americans really made 
that part of the country. 

At the same time, farther west, a stream of American 
pioneers began to pour into what are now Ontario and Que- 
bec. The first of them were Tories or Loyalists from the 
interior of the old colonies, principally New York. But 
those who followed in increasing numbers down to the War 
of 1812 were simple land-seekers. They were the original 
settlers of the "Kastern Townships" — that part of Quebec 
just across the line from New Hampshire and Vermont. 
They were also the founders of Ontario, then called "Upper 
Canada." Kven after the War of 1812 Americans kept on 
moving over into Upper Canada. 

By the middle of the century, the tide had turned the 
other way. Canadians were pouring into Michigan. At 
one time they made up 25 percent of its population. In the 
latter half of the century the exodus from Canada to the 
United States was much greater. By 1890 it was so great 
that the population of Canada had almost stopped growing. 

Before the close of the century, however, the tide again 
turned in Canada's favor. What happened was that the 
human stream filling our West was dammed up when the 

last good free homestead land was taken, and then it spilled 
over into the Canadian prairie. It continued to spill until 
the outbreak of World War I. During the 1920's the balance 
of migration once more swung from Canada to America. 

As a result of this ebb and flow, about 1.5 of the 11.5 
million people living in Canada are of United States origin 
and there are about 5 million Americans of Canadian origin. 

In addition to this more or less permanent exchange of 
population, there has been a constant coming and going for 
business and pleasure. In the typical year of 1931-32, 
Canadian crossings into the United States numbered about 
10.5 million and American crossings into Canada about 20 
million. Many of these crossings are made by people who 
live near the border and cross it daily commuting to work 
on the other side. 

Thus for generation after generation, from Atlantic to 
Pacific, people have moved freely across the Canadian- 
American border. There has been nothing like it anywhere 
else in the world, and it has produced an international in- 
timacy — there is no other way to describe it — that is quite 
unique. To this we will return after we have had a closer 
look at Canada. 



The area of Canada is considerably larger than that of 
continental United States, and the countries look somewhat 
alike on the map — if no railways or cities are marked on it. 
If these are shown, they indicate that the distribution of 
population is not at all the same. 

As we have already observed, most of the Canadians live 
along the southern side of their country. Why is this? If 
you think climate is the answer, you have missed the most 
important reason. It is geology. 


More than half the Dominion is covered by a strange 
rocky formation that has dominated the development of 
Canada almost from the very beginning. This Pre-Cam- 
brian or Laurentian shield, as it is called, lies like a gigantic 
collar around Hudson Bay. It spreads out to the Atlantic, 
and comes right down to the St. Lawrence, across which it 
throws a spur to form the Thousand Islands. Westward it 
encloses Lake Superior, and from there it stretches north- 
west to the mouth of the Mackenzie River in the Arctic. 

This rocky formation is made up of the stumps of ancient 
mountains that have been ground down by the action of 
glaciers in ages past. It is a wilderness of rocks, lakes, and 
evergreen trees. Long ago it blocked the advance of settle- 
ment. It has been of economic use for only three purposes — 
at first for the furs it produced, and more recently for its 
wealth of forest and mineral resources. 

The Pre-Cambrian shield is to blame for crowding the 
population of eastern Canada in a narrow belt of territory 
along the south. It has also cut Canada in two, separating 
the East from the West by a huge, almost uninhabited area. 
There is no "Middle West" in the Dominion of Canada. 

The Maritime Provinces 

This is not the only way nature has divided the Dominion 
into separate regions the like of which do not exist in our 
country. Set apart in the extreme east are the three prov- 
inces of Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, and Prince Edward 
Island, which Canadians commonly lump together as the 
Maritimes. They have a French history that is older than 
the founding of New England, and in the nineteenth cen- 
tury they received many immigrants from the British Isles. 
But it was the settlement of the Loyalists that gave the 
Maritimes their distinct character. 

These Loyalists were generally people of superior educa- 
tion and social standing — judges, lawyers, doctors, and 





f N 

. *#=!• 

Coal mining in the Marilimcs 

A £<hmI haul of siinlinrs 

Halifax is OaiiaHa's ;r< ,ii« -i port mi the Atlantic Ocean. 

Snuglv li.'.jili <l in id. !••«• of hill*, ihi*- village lm»k> In sen. 


4 --*W& 


Mo»lrt>al. nilh 1.200.000 preptr. In CaiuiiliiV luryr*! rii». 

*;irli;MiH-nl Hill. Oihi\»:i 

\ I'M" i mill in '.*' 

it. -I. -.i. :ti 

.1 liikf pur! 

II.IMmr- fur Ihr II. S. \.,- 



1 "I 


1 ' 


<»rnin elevators line llie railroa<I track al prairie town*. 

Harvenl on the tvhentluntl* that stretch north of the bonier 

Cattle raising; reuelieil nn all-time high during the war. 


Com ox Viillev, t!riii-li Columbia 

l,ake Ailin. Itritish (lulniiihia 

!-•;'.- floal down wi'stcrni rtvern In siiwmilU and imnrr mills. 


business leaders. It has been said that a list of them reads 
like an honor roll of Harvard graduates of that time. Ever 
since the Dominion was formed, the Maritimes have con- 
tributed much more than their numerical proportion of its 
prominent citizens, particularly in the professions. 

Where did they get their brains? Harvard men might 
have an answer, but Canadians have another. They smile 
and say "fish," referring to the diet on which the Maritimers 
are raised — or supposed to be raised. Their life has been 
largely influenced by the fact that they have lived by the 
sea, from the sea, and on the sea. The sea is in their blood. 

These three provinces are much smaller than any one 
of the other six, and they are the only ones whose popula- 
tions spread over their whole area. They are almost cut off 
from the rest of the Dominion by a rough mountainous 
barrier and the northern salient of Maine. 

Central Canatla — Quebec and Ontario 

The next region of unbroken settlement is the long strip of 
Quebec and Ontario that lies south of the Pre-Cambrian 
shield. It is commonly known as Centra] Canada. Though 
not geographically central, it contains nearly two-thirds of 
the Dominion's population and is the center of economic and 
political power in Canada. 

The province of Quebec is much the older and is pre- 
dominantly French. For nearly a century and a half it 
was the main seat of the French empire that extended over 
a great part of this continent. The city of Quebec, founded 
in 1608, is older than any city in the United States except 
St. Augustine. There you can see physically preserved 
more of the past than anywhere else north of the Rio Grande. 

In size Quebec cannot compare with its younger rival 
Montreal, which is just over three centuries old. This is 
now the largest city in the Dominion and with its suburbs 


has a population of more than a million. It is the second 
largest French-speaking city in the world, being next in 
size to Paris. 

For many generations the typical French Canadian lived 
on a little farm, like a narrow ribbon, running back from 
the river's edge. There are still many French Canadians 
of the old type, but the majority now live in cities and 
towns. The province of Quebec, in fact, has proportion- 
ately the most industrialized population of any part of the 
Dominion — though it retains many of its social and politi- 
cal traditions. 

Ontario is the richest and most populous of all the prov- 
inces. Therefore, its total industrial production exceeds 
that of Quebec, though in proportion its population is not 
quite so urban. Its agricultural society is the most pros- 
perous In the Dominion. Toronto, the capital city, is not 
so large as Montreal by 200,000, but it is two and a half 
limes bigger than any other city in the country. 

Ontario is often said to be the core or heart of the Domin- 
ion. There is much truth in the statement, and the people 
of that province are more or less conscious of it. If you 
tell this to a man from another part of Canada, however, 
you may get an interesting little explosion. No state in 
the Union holds a position comparable to that of Ontario 
in the Dominion. Nor is there any American parallel for 

Though these two provinces of Central Canada are 
separated by no natural barrier, the cleavage between them 
is much greater than any that we have in our country. 
Not even the Mason and Dixon's line cuts as deep as the 
division between French-speaking Roman Catholic Quebec 
and English-speaking Protestant Ontario. But this raises 
such an important subject that we must consider it sepa- 
rately later. 


The Prairie Provinces 

Westward, or rather northwestward, hundreds of miles 
across the rocky wilderness of the Pre-Cambrian shield, 
begins the next region of unbroken settlement. This is by 
far the most extensive in the country. It stretches across 
the three Prairie Provinces of Manitoba, Saskatchewan, 
and Alberta — commonly known as the Prairies. 

Predominantly agricultural now, it was long a domain of 
the Hudson's Bay Company, chartered in 1670 and still 
doing business — now mostly department stores. Canada 
acquired the territory in 1870 — her Louisiana Purchase. It 
attracted few settlers until shortly before 1900, when it be- 
gan to fill with a rush that soon became almost a stampede. 

The population of this part of the Dominion is a great 
mixture, having been drawn from the United States, 
eastern Canada, the British Isles, and continental Europe. 
It is Canada's melting pot. Over twenty foreign-language 
newspapers are published in Winnipeg, the metropolis of 
the Prairie Provinces. Yet it is astonishing to see how 
rapidly the immigrants from continental Europe have been 

By and large, the prairie people are the least provincial 
in Canada. This is largely explained by their diverse 
origin, their recent arrival, and their main economic inter- 
est — the producton of wheat for sale abroad. 

They are also less conservative. The cooperative move- 
ment has been stronger in Canada than in the United 
States, and in Canada it has been strongest on the prairie, 
particularly in the marketing of grain. There also arose 
the two radical political parties of the present day. One 
is the Social Credit party, called the "Funny Money" party 
by its opponents, which has governed Alberta since 1935. 
The other is the socialist CCF (Cooperative Commonwealth 
Federation), which captured the government of Saskatche- 


wan in 1944 and has a considerable following in every 
province of the Dominion west of Quebec. 

The farther west you go on the prairie the more the 
population spreads out to the north. Here is the chief 
exception to the general rule that Canadians live close to 
the American border. Here is the only large area where, 
humanly speaking, the Dominion has breadth as well as 
length, where you can travel several hundred miles north 
through unbroken settlement. 

In the West, settlement comes to an end as it runs up 
against the Rockies. These are a formidable barrier — ■ 
more so than in our country. In Canada the mountainous 
backbone of the continent becomes more rugged and com- 
pressed, and the passes present more difficult engineering 
problems for railway and highway construction. 

The Pacific Province — British Columbia 

The Rockies cut off British Columbia from the rest of the 
Dominion. Though this province stretches from the state 
of Washington up to and behind Alaska, most of its popu- 
lation is crowded into the extreme southwest corner — in 
and around Vancouver. This is the third largest city in 
Canada, a rank it gained as recently as the census of 1931, 
when it surpassed Winnipeg. 

British Columbia developed later than any other prov- 
ince or group of provinces. The reason was its geographi- 
cal isolation before the opening of the Panama Canal. That 
event made British Columbia — that and the immense re- 
sources of fish, forest, and mine, which make it naturally 
the richest of all the provinces except Ontario. It has 
become one of the world's more important mining regions. 

British Columbia differs from the Prairies in having a 
much smaller proportion of continental Europeans and a 
much larger one of old people. The genial climate of the 
coast has made it what some bustling Canadians on the 


prairie have called a "land of the tired and retired." It 
has attracted retired and semi-retired people from all over 
western Canada and even from the British Isles. Society 
in this province, particularly Vancouver Island, has a dis- 
tinct English flavor such as is not to be found anywhere 
else in the Dominion. 

North of the 60th parallel, the Yukon and Northwest 
Territories and the islands stretching to the Arctic Ocean 
form a vast area empty of inhabitants except Eskimos, 
some Indians, and a few whites. It plays no vital role in 
the life of present-day Canada, but it has rich natural re- 
sources which have just begun to be exploited. 

Beads on a steel thread 

Now let us view the country as a whole, and we will see 
that it is not a natural unit, nor even nine natural units 
corresponding to the nine provinces. Geography has di- 
vided it into four quite separate sections: the first compris- 
ing the three little Maritime Provinces; the second the two 
big provinces of Central Canada, Quebec and Ontario; the 
third the three large Prairie Provinces; and the fourth the 
single province of British Columbia. 

Few countries in the world are so disjointed physically. 
The inhabited portions of the Dominion, instead of forming 
a compact block, are separated from each other and 
stretched out from ocean to ocean. They are strung to- 
gether like beads on the steel thread of the railways. 

Railways, therefore, mean more to Canada than to any 
other country. Indeed they were mostly built for a national 
purpose, to hold and pull the country together. The Do- 
minion has been created in defiance of geography. More- 
over the geographical unity of Central Canada is cut in 
two by fundamental differences of race, language, and re- 
ligion. Thus there are not four but five very distinct 
regions or sections. 


The natural result is a strong tendency toward sectional- 
ism, much more so than in the United States, and this 
tendency is supported by the governmental structure. The 
Old South is not so isolated geographically as are the Mari- 
time Provinces or the Prairie Provinces. Nor in all the 
Union is there any state that coincides with a sectional 
area, as does each of the other three provinces, Quebec, 
Ontario, and British Columbia. The inherent sectionalism 
in the Dominion is one of the major problems of the 

The problem has been complicated by us, quite uncon- 
sciously. We could not help it. While geography has di- 
vided Canada, it has linked each of the inhabited sections 
with the adjoining portion of the United States. As a con- 
sequence, our country has exercised a strong pull upon each 
of these parts of our northern neighbor. 

It was to resist this pull that the Dominion was formed 
in 18G7, that it acquired the West out to the Rockies in 
1870 and British Columbia in 1871. Here is a rather inter- 
esting paradox : The very force that might have swallowed 
up British North America piecemeal saved it by making 
it draw together to form a nation. The result is that Can- 
ada has more national unity than the above account of 
physical disunity may suggest. 



Canada's conscious and successful striving after unity 
should be borne in mind as we examine another great and 
permanent problem of the country: preserving and encour- 
aging harmonious relations between French Canada and 
English Canada. In this connection "English" Canada 
means all the population, whether of British or other origin, 
that speaks English. 


Though it is focused in Quebec and Ontario, the problem 
is Dominion-wide. A considerable minority in Quebec, 
nearly 20 percent of the 3.3 million in that province, are 
English Canadians. French Canadians form considerable 
minorities in every other province except British Columbia. 
French is the native tongue of three out of every ten 

Many Americans wonder why the French in Canada 
have not been assimilated — swallowed up in the English 
majority. But assimilation was out of the question. The 
French did not go to Canada to be Anglicized. They went 
there to live as French men under the French flag. The 
history of Canada as a French colony is almost as long as 
that of the United States as a republic. 

After the British conquest of this French colony in 1760, 
a quarter of a century elapsed before any real English- 
speaking population settled on the soil of old Canada (Que- 
bec and Ontario). And three-quarters of a century passed 
before the English-speaking population was as numerous 
as the French. There was little assimilation, and that little 
was mostly of English-speaking people by the French. 

There was no lack of attempts at assimilation the other 
way round, but they defeated their own end. The attempts 
promoted bitter racial strife, and only hardened the deter- 
mination of the French to retain their separate identity. 

The strife did not end until the middle of the nineteenth 
century. What stopped it was the establishment of colonial 
self-government on a basis of equality for French and Eng- 
lish. That was an object lesson for all time to come. 

How deep is the division? 

Canada is like a double-yolked egg. French Canada and 

English Canada each form, as it were, a nation within a 

nation. The Dominion is a country with a dual nationality. 

Double nationality is very foreign to American ways of 



mosf Canadians live within 
300 m>fei of the U. S border 



English 25.80, Scotch 12.20, Irish 11.02, Others .66 

FRENCH 30.27 


German 4.04, Ukrainian 2.66, Scandinavian 2.13, Netherlands 1.85, 
Jewish 1.48, Polish 1.45, Italian .98, Russian 73, Hungarian .47, Others 1.97 




Agriculture 1,083,816 

logging, Trapping & 

Fishing 131,700 

Mining & Quarrying 71,886 

Manufacturing 703, 162 

Construction 202,848 

Transportation 268,656 

Trade 355,079 

Finance & Industry 31,392 

Clerical 338,031 

Service 734,424 

Laborers 263,544 

Not stated 11,413 

TOTAL 4,195,951 

■n Armed Forces on December 3», 1944 759,879 

casualties to May 31, 1945 102,954 

thinking, but it has to be recognized before one can begin 
to understand Canada. There are few countries in the 
world — and not another in this hemisphere — where such 
complete duality prevails. It dominates Canadian politics, 
for almost every public question must be viewed with a 
French eye and an English eye, or it will be seen out of 

Canada's dual nationality is published on every postage 
stamp and on the paper currency issued by the Dominion 
government, for they are printed in both French and Eng- 
lish. It is echoed in the Supreme Court of Canada and in 
the houses of Parliament, where, according to the constitu- 
tion, French stands on a par with English as an official 
language. Every motion in Parliament has to be put in 
both French and English, members may deliver their 
speeches in either tongue, and all federal publications — the 
Dominion laws, the debates in Parliament, and government 
reports — appear in two editions, one French and the other 

Both languages are official in the province of Quebec, too, 
but not in any other province — and naturally the French 
do not like this. They insist that they should have in the 
other provinces the same rights as English Canadians have 
in Quebec. 

The difference in nationality, moreover, has endowed re- 
ligion with special rights unknown in our country, for the 
French Canadians are solidly Roman Catholic. In the middle 
of the 1800 's, when a public-school system was estab- 
lished in old Canada, the English-speaking Protestant 
minority in Canada East, formerly Lower Canada and now 
Quebec, insisted on having their own separate system of 
tax-supported schools. Otherwise they would have had to 
send their children to French Roman Catholic schools, a 
prospect that seemed intolerable to them. 


The French Canadians granted the demand, but at a 
price. This was that the Roman Catholic minority in Can- 
ada West, now Ontario, should have the same privilege. 
This bargain was written into the constitution when the 
Dominion was formed a few years later. 

In Quebec, also, the Roman Catholic church is supported 
by a tax called the tithe. The law by which this tax is 
levied was continued from the French regime with an 
amendment exempting Protestants from having to pay 
tithes to the Roman Catholic church. 

Why the trouble over conscription? 

The most serious difficulty that has arisen between English 
Canada and French Canada in our own day has been over 
conscription. It flared up in World War I and again in 
World War II. 

Voluntary military service is an old British tradition. 
Britain did not abandon it until 1916, in the midst of 
World War I, and Canada was the only British dominion to 
follow suit. That was because casualties in the Canadian 
army in 1917 were greater than the voluntary system could 

Voluntary recruiting in French Canada had not kept 
pace with recruiting in English Canada for a number of 
reasons. The French were naturally more isolationist be- 
cause they had lived in Canada for many more generations. 
Practically every French Canadian had to go back nearly 
two centuries and a half to find an ancestor who lived on the 
other side of the Atlantic. Another reason for their isola- 
tionism was their non-British origin. It inclined them to 
see the war as a British war in which Canada had no busi- 
ness to be fighting. Moreover they married younger and had 
larger families, so that a smaller percentage of their young 
men were free of the ties of wife and children. Their re- 
ligion also held them back because of two peculiar circum- 


stances of the time, one in France and the other in Ottawa. 

In France the government of the Third Republic had 
turned on the church and driven out many of the antirepub- 
lican clergy. Some of these exiles found a refuge in Canada. 
From them and from their own priests as well, the French 
Canadians had been hearing bitter denunciations of the 
French government. Therefore when Germany invaded 
France in 1914, French Canada was disposed to regard the 
attack as a judgment of God upon what was to them the 
wicked and irreligious republic. 

The other peculiar circumstance was that the Canadian 
minister of militia, the cabinet member responsible for rais- 
ing and training the Canadian army in 1914, was the out- 
standing Orangeman in the country. This means much to 
Canadians but little to Americans, few of whom have ever 
heard of the Orange Order. 

This secret order arose in Ulster, now Northern Ireland, 
where it stood for Protestant supremacy and is still a great 
power. More than a century ago it entered Canada, and 
there it throve mightily on the anti-Catholic and anti- 
French prejudices that have been so marked in Ontario. 
It was nothing short of tragic that a well-known Orange- 
man held such a key position during the war. 

The opening chasm 

English Canada did not understand the situation in French 
Canada and impatiently cried out for conscription in order 
to draft the French. There was a general election on the 
issue. English Canada imposed its will on French Canada — 
contrary to assurances given when the Dominion was 
formed that the French Canadians could trust the English- 
speaking and Protestant majority never to run a steam 
roller over them. 

The French Canadians were crushed. They had horrid 
visions of being crushed again in the dark, uncertain future. 


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'■ '- ; 



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Conscription came to have a strange and terrible meaning 
for them. It implied the ultimate loss of the liberty they 
cherished above all else: the liberty to be themselves. 

The French Canadians received such a jolt that in later 
years, even after World War II began, both major political 
parties pledged themselves, as the only way to win votes 
in Quebec, never to conscript men for overseas service. 

At the time France fell in 1940, the Canadian govern- 
ment rushed through Parliament, with almost no opposition, 
a law giving the government nearly unlimited power over 
persons and property. Compulsory military training was 
then adopted, but the Prime Minister said he would not 
abandon the voluntary system for service overseas. The 
Canadian expeditionary army was built entirely of volun- 

Still the French Canadians were nervous, and their fears 
were roused by English Canadians who began to raise the 
old cry again. Some of them did it honestly, some in order 
to bait French Canada and embarrass the government. To 
clear the air, a national plebiscite was held in the spring of 
1942, when the people were asked if they would release the 
government from its pledge. English Canada voted "Yes," 
French Canada "No." 

The result was more tension, which the government re- 
lieved by getting Parliament to legalize the draft for over- 
seas and promising not to apply it until absolutely neces- 
sary. It was not necessary until the autumn of 1944, when 
the Canadian army battering its way into Germany had 
suffered heavy casualties. The government then extended 
the draft from home to foreign service. 

Meanwhile hot words flew back and forth between the 
two peoples of the country. English-speaking Canadians 
attacked the government for coddling Quebec. But the dual 
nationality of Canada makes it a hard country to govern, 
particularly in wartime. 




The British constitution and the American Constitu- 
tion, which are very different, are blended in Canada. Like 
the United States, Canada has a federal form of govern- 
ment. It was copied from the American example, with vari- 
ations inspired by American experience and Canadian needs. 

The division of authority between the Canadian Parlia- 
ment and the provincial legislatures is much the same as 
that between Congress and the state legislatures. But in- 
stead of leaving the provinces all the power that was not 
specifically conferred upon the Dominion, in accordance 
with the American principle, the Canadians adopted the 
opposite principle. They gave the residue of authority to 
the federal government. This seemed to be the great lesson 
taught by our war between the North and the South, dur- 
ing which the framers of the Canadian constitution did most 
of their work. Thus the Canadian constitution bears the 
indelible stamp of the American Civil War. In practice, 
however, the provinces have gained in power through ju- 
dicial interpretation of the constitution. 

Another difference is that no province can legislate on 
banking or criminal law. These are subjects wholly within 
the federal field. The criminal law is therefore uniform 
throughout the country, and so is the banking system. 

Our duplicate system of courts, federal and state, was 
also rejected in Canada. There the same courts, with per- 
manently appointed judges, administer both federal and 
provincial law. Yet another difference is that the consti- 
tution bound the federal government to subsidize the pro- 
vincial governments. 

Canada resembles the United Slates rather than Britain 
in having a written constitution. This is the British North 


America Act (commonly referred to as the BNA Act) of 
1867 and its amendments. But if you take it literally it 
will give you very false notions of how the country is actu- 
ally governed, as we shall see presently. The reason is that 
Canada also has an unwritten constitution — like the British 
— and this governs the operation of the written one. 

The most vital part of the Canadian system of govern- 
ment is wholly British and totally un-American. It is the 
fusion of the executive and the legislative branches of gov- 
ernment in the cabinet, which is chosen from the leaders 
of the majority party in the Parliament at Ottawa. When 
the Canadians formed their federal union in 1867, they 
already had this British system in the provinces. They were 
so convinced by experience and observation that it was 
better than the American, with its separation of powers 
and its checks and balances, that they would not consider 
adopting ours. 

The real bosn 

Americans are sometimes misled by the fact that govern- 
ment in Canada is conducted in the name of the king. By 
the letter of the BNA Act, the king rules Canada through 
the governor general, whom he appoints. In turn, the gov- 
ernor general supposedly rules the provinces through lieu- 
tenant governors, whom he appoints. But in reality the 
Dominion government chooses the governor general and 
the lieutenant governors — who, like the king himself, are 
only figureheads. 

The real head of the federal government, legislative as 
well as executive, is the prime minister, in whom all power 
is concentrated and all responsibility focused. He does not 
run for election to this high position, nor does he hold it 
for any fixed period. Moreover there is no law defining it. 

The requirements are political rather than legal. The 
prime minister must be a member of the House of Com- 


mons and, more than that, he has to be the leader of the 
majority party in the House. If he fills the bill, the governor 
general has no other choice than to appoint him. As prime 
minister, or real head of the executive, he picks and controls 
the cabinet. These heads of the various executive depart- 
ments he selects from his own followers in the House, where 
he and they remain. There they are answerable to the other 
members for any and every administrative act. 

With the help of his cabinet, the prime minister leads 
the debates in the Mouse and directs the legislative pro- 
gram. The Senate, unlike ours, is not elected but appointed, 
has no special powers, and is politically, though not legally, 
subordinate to the House of Commons. Thus the prime 
minister runs Parliament as well as the administration. 
And he can continue in power indefinitely — as long as he 
remains the acknowledged leader of the House of Commons. 
But the moment he loses this leadership he has to resign, 
unless by calling an election he can get a new House that 
will follow him. 

Here is the internal balance of the Canadian constitution, 
which is quite different from the balance in ours. On the 
one hand, the members of the House of Commons can turn 
the prime minister out of office at any time, which enforces 
his responsibility to them and through them to the people. 
On the other hand, he can turn the House out to face an 
election at any time, which gives him a disciplinary control 
over irresponsible members. As soon as a deadlock appears, 
it forces a general election, thus ending the deadlock by an 
appeal to the people. 

There is no fixed period for general elections, either fed- 
eral or provincial. One can be held at any time the govern- 
ment wishes. Hut there is a limit of five years to the life 
of the Canadian federal Parliament and the provincial 


Loosening the reins of empire 

Canada got independence without having to fight for it. 
The American Revolution taught Britain never to tax a 
colony again. But it also persuaded the British that they 
should not let the remaining colonies get out of hand or 
they would break away too. This meant trying to hold them 
by controlling their governments, and the result was a grow- 
ing strain in each colony. A little over a century ago two 
miniature rebellions in Canada startled London into sending 
out a leading statesman to find what was wrong and how 
to put it right. 

This man was Lord Durham, whose report is a milestone 
in the history of Canada and of the whole British Empire. 
He insisted that the only way to keep the colonies was to 
let them govern themselves as they wished. The magic 
power of liberty, he proclaimed, would hold the colonial 
empire together. Soon the British government put his 
formula to the test, and at once it began to work. That was 
almost a hundred years ago. 

Though mistress in its own house, Canada was a sub- 
ordinate partner in the Empire. The British government 
had the legal right to veto any act of the Canadian Parlia- 
ment, a right that was used once in the early days of the 
Dominion and never again. Canadian legislation was liable 
to be overridden by acts of the British Parliament and 
could not touch the subject of merchant shipping, which 
Britain regulated for the whole Empire. Canadian foreign 
relations had to be conducted, at least formally, through the 
channel of the British Foreign Office. And Canada was 
bound by the actions of Britain in declaring war and mak- 
ing peace. 

These remains of imperial control were all removed after 
World War I, in which Canada played an important part 
and earned the right to equality. Along with the other self- 
governing dominions, Canada got the right to have its own 


diplomatic service, inaugurated in 1927 by exchanging 
ministers with the United States, and later extended by 
exchanges with many other countries. In the imperial 
conference of 1926, the following important declaration 
was unanimously adopted: "The group of self-governing 
communities composed of Great Britain and the Domin- 
ions . . . are autonomous communities within the 
Empire, equal in status, in no way subordinate one to an- 
other." After much further consultation between the gov- 
ernments of the Empire, this principle was translated into 
law by the Statute of Westminster, which the British 
Parliament passed in 1931. 

The last remnants of subordination 

Only two limitations upon full Canadian autonomy remain, 
and these only by Canadian consent. One is in the admin- 
istration of justice. The highest court of appeal is the 
Privy Council in London. Canada has stopped all criminal 
appeals to the Privy Council, and some civil appeals. In 
all probability Canada will stop the others too when a good 
solution is found for the problem raised by the second 

The second limitation is that for important amendments 
of the written part of the constitution Canada has to go to 
the British Parliament. This may seem strange in light 
of the fact that the other dominions can amend their con- 
stitutions themselves. The explanation lies in Canada's 
dual nationality. A formula has yet to be found that would 
protect the rights of French Canada, the minority, without 
making amendment too difficult to be practical. Some of 
the best minds in Canada have been working hard on this 
problem, and they may soon solve it. 

We should also notice another question that worried many 
Canadians during the years between the two World Wars. 
They argued that as long as the Dominion retained the 


British connection the country might be plunged into war 
by a decision of the mother country over which Canada had 
no control — as in 1914. 

This question, upon which the Statute of Westminster 
was silent, was finally answered in 1939. When Britain 
then went to war, Eire declared its neutrality, South Africa 
wavered on the brink before plunging in, and Canada as- 
serted its independence in this most important decision of 
all by making its own declaration of war. 

Even today many otherwise well-informed Americans 
cannot quite grasp the fact that Britain no longer exercises 
any control over Canadian policy. Canadians are more 
than a little sensitive on this point. There is much truth 
in the shrewd Canadian jest that the only way Britain might 
persuade Canada to do anything is to suggest the opposite. 

What about imperial teamicork? 

Occasional talk that Canada might combine with the other 
parts of the British Commonwealth of Nations so that all 
might speak with one voice in international affairs need not 
be taken seriously. The idea of drawing the Empire together 
again is an old one that still finds many supporters in Brit- 
ain and some in Canada. But it is now further from realiz- 
ation than it has been in the past. If there were no ob- 
stacles in other parts of the British world — and there are 
many — Canada alone would block it. On occasion Canada 
has vigorously asserted its freedom from the mother coun- 
try's apron strings. 

Look at the peculiar position of Canada and you will see 
why. This oldest and biggest of the dominions is the only 
one that is bound up with any power outside the Empire. 
And Canada is in the shadow of one of the greatest powers 
on earth. 

Primarily because Canada is American as well as British, 
Canadians have steadily and successfully resisted pressure 



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from Britain and from other dominions to establish in Lon- 
don any new Empire government in which they would all 
share. Because Canada is American as well as British, it 
felt — long before President Roosevelt said so in 1938 — that 
the Monroe Doctrine gave a security to match that of the 
British navy. Every peacetime proposal for cooperative 
imperial defense, therefore, foundered in Canada. 

Also, Canada's economic life is much too closely knit 
with that of the United States to be torn away and tied up 
tight in an imperial customs union. The nearest Canada 
ever came to that was in the Ottawa agreements of 1932. 
But that was when our Smoot-Hawley tariff had dealt Can- 
ada a staggering blow. And see what happened afterward. 
When Canadians found that we too were willing to nego- 
tiate for freer trade, they eagerly sought an agreement 
with us. They even went to London to pry open the im- 
perial agreements of 1932 so that the Dominion might get 
still freer trade with us as part of an arrangement for freer 
Anglo-American trade. 



Canada is really more tied to the United States than to 
Britain. She may be the daughter of Britain, but she is 
married to the United States — without any chance of 

A most revealing incident occurred in 1921, when the 
British government was about to renew its expiring treaty 
of alliance with Japan. American relations with Japan at 
that time were so strained that they suggested the possi- 
bility of war. Renewal of the treaty would have poisoned 
Anglo-American relations, which weren't too cordial then 


The prospect was intolerable to Canada. Rather than be 
dragged into a position of hostility toward its powerful 
neighbor, best friend, and closest relative, Canada would, 
if necessary, break with Britain. So the Canadian prime 
minister spoke quietly but plainly to the British govern- 
ment. His veto was effective. The offending alliance was 

The International Joint Commission 

Perhaps the most remarkable illustration of the intimacy 
of the relations between Canada and the United States is 
the International Joint Commission. It exercises a surpris- 
ing amount of authority over the common interests of the 
two countries along the international boundary. 

More than half of the nearly 4,000-mile line runs through 
waterways, and by the ordinary rides of international law 
each country has absolute control of all its waters right up 
to the line separating them. This means that each could 
use its own boundary waters without regard for the? effect 
on the other side. Here was a situation that clearly called 
for friendly coo|>eration and joint control on a permanent 
basis. Arrangements for this were made by the Boundary 
Waters Treaty of 1900, which laid down a new code of 
international law to govern these boundary waters and set 
up the International Joint Commission to administer it. 

The new code prohibited the pollution of boundary 
waters. It established a priority of uses, so that there 
would be no diversion of water on one side that would in- 
terfere with a diversion for a more important purpose on 
the other side. The treaty required that consent of the 
commission be obtained for any interference with the natu- 
ral flow of waters that would change the level across the 
boundary. It also specified the maximum diversion from 
the Niagara and other rivers. 

The commission is an international court composed of 


three permanent members from each country. It holds its 
sessions in either country wherever it is most convenient 
for all the parties concerned. In addition to administering 
the new code, the commission is empowered to investigate 
any international question arising along the common fron- 
tier and submitted by the two governments. 

One interesting example of the multitude of difficulties 
that it has settled occurred in the 1930's. A giant smelter 
at Trail, British Columbia, close to the border, gave off 
fumes that blighted vegetation. American farmers within 
a radius of many miles claimed that these fumes ruined or 
at least injured their crops. The case was referred to the 
commission, which, after many sessions and much legal and 
scientific argument, found the extent of the damage, what 
should be paid for it, and what should be done to check it. 

The most important part of the commission's work is to 
regulate conditions so that disputes will not arise. This is 
one reason why few citizens of either country, except those 
immediately concerned, have even heard of its existence. 
Another reason is that though it is composed of an equal 
number of Canadian and American members it has never 
divided nationally on any question and has almost always 
reached its conclusions unanimously. 

Other examples of cooperation 

World War II entwined the interests of the two countries 
still further, and gave rise to new joint bodies to coordinate 
them. One was the Permanent Joint Defense Board al- 
ready mentioned. Another was the Material Coordinating 
Committee to supervise the movement of raw materials 
and the distribution of supplies and electric power. An- 
other was the Joint War Production Committee to dovetail 
the war production of Canada and the United States so 
that it would reach a combined maximum. To this end 
there was a virtual pooling of the raw materials of the con- 


tinent and a mutual suspension of tariffs on defense 

More interesting may have been the work of the Joint 
Economic Committees. Meeting together, they surveyed 
the resources of both countries as a whole and examined 
possibilities for more effective cooperation in the use and 
development of those resources. The Joint Economic Com- 
mittees were dissolved in March 1944, but work of the 
more practical Joint War Production Board and Material 
Coordinating Committee continued through the end of 
the war with Japan, and the latter body was to last in- 
definitely. Three other important joint groups were 
formed by Canada, Great Britain, and the United States — 
the Combined Production and Resources Board, the Com- 
bined Raw Materials Board, and the Combined Food 
Board. After the end of the war against Japan, the three 
governments decided to continue these for the time being 
to help meet immediate postwar problems. 

Does Canada want annexation? 

Many Americans have been fooled into imagining that 
Canada would like to join the United States. The intimacy 
and the similarity between these two neighboring nations 
have suggested it, and Canadians themselves have fostered 
the illusion by the way they have talked from time to time. 

It is true that there are some English-speaking Canadians 
who favor annexation. There always have been some and 
there probably will continue to be. Canadians have dis- 
cussed it for generations. In the 1830\s the English-speak- 
ing minority in Lower Canada (Quebec) openly said they 
would rather have annexation ihan allow the French ma- 
jority to rule. 

In 1 S4 * > a group of disgruntled English-speaking mer- 
chants and politicians of Montreal published a manifesto 
calling for annexation. Their agitation soon fizzled out. 


That was the highest point the annexation movement ever 

In the late 1860's it flared up in Nova Scotia, where many 
people thought their province had got a raw deal in the 
formation of the Dominion. About the same time it ap- 
peared in British Columbia. 

Annexalionism has usually been the expression of sec- 
tional discontent — a stick to shake at the rest of the country. 
People in the Prairie Provinces have often talked annex- 
ation out of resentment against federal policies dictated by 
Central Canada. But whenever the movement has raised 
its head enough to attract much attention, it has inspired 
a stronger countermovement to suppress it. 

The idea of annexation has never taken hold in French 
Canada. It has always frightened that part of the country, 
and for obvious reasons. The Canadian constitution guar- 
antees the French certain rights for their language and 
their religion. Special protection for these things most 
precious to them would disappear under the American Con- 
stitution. Numerically, also, their position as a minority is 
many times stronger in the Dominion than it would be in 
the United States. 

Why they stand aloof 

Some Americans have been unable to understand why 
English Canada has always shied away from annexation. 
There is more than blind prejudice in the Canadian reaction. 
Something deeper, something more spiritual is involved. Be- 
cause it is a thing of the spirit it is difficult, if not impos- 
sible, to define or explain. 

Two persons may look alike and yet be different in spirit. 
So it is with these neighboring nations. There is much in 
the Canadian spirit that is American, but there is also 
much that is not. This is partly the product of the British 
tradition, which is a powerful factor. As Canadians resent 


outsiders' criticism of the United States, so also do they 
resent American criticism of Britain. 

There is in Canada a certain anti-American prejudice 
that corresponds to, and is stimulated by, the anti-British 
prejudice in the United States. Yet there is also a strain 
of anti-British feeling in the Dominion. It crops out occa- 
sionally here and there in English Canada, but without be- 
ing annexationist. And it is most pronounced in French 
Canada, where annexationists have never been able to make 
any headway. Obviously there is something much more 
than British tradition behind the Canadian spirit, just as 
there is something more than the anti-British tradition in 
the composition of the American spirit. 

Whatever the other causes may be, the fact of the matter 
is that there exists a distinct quality of life in Canada of 
which Canadians are more or less conscious and which dis- 
cerning Americans and Englishmen sometimes perceive. 
The Canadians would no more like to lose it than we would 
like to lose our own national spirit. 

If any American wants to annex Canada to the United 
States, he should never suggest it to a Canadian. The 
Canadian's reaction is apt to be the same as the American's 
would be if some Britisher suggested that the United States 
be reannexed to the British Empire. Canadians love their 
country no less than we love ours. 


In THESE days when we have heard so much debate about 
private enterprise, it is interesting to observe that Cana- 
dians have gone in for public enterprise much more than 
we have. 

When the Dominion was first formed, the federal gov- 
ernment undertook to build and operate a railway that 


would unite the Maritime Provinces with Central Canada. 
As a business proposition it did not pay, it could not pay, 
and it was never intended to pay. It was a great public 
work to draw the country together. 

Similarly when the Dominion acquired the country west 
of the Great Lakes out to the Pacific, the federal govern- 
ment undertook to provide a railwaiy that would tie the 
West to the East — the Canadian Pacific Railway. It too 
was started as a government concern, and though later 
turned over to a private corporation, it had to be heavily 
subsidized by the government. Otherwise private capital 
would not touch it. 

In both these early ventures the Canadian people and 
their government were giving bold recognition to the fact 
that the profit motive was not sufficient to meet the needs 
of the nation. 

Today there are only two railway systems in the country, 
both operating from the Atlantic to the Pacific. One is the 
privately owned Canadian Pacific (17,058 miles). The 
other is the Canadian National (22,586 miles), which is 
owned and operated by the federal government. 

You may have heard this railway cited as convincing 
proof that public ownership does not pay. But one can just 
as truthfully argue that it proves the failure of private 
enterprise. Most of it. the rest being what the federal gov- 
ernment had built and operated, is made up of the wrecks 
of private undertakings: railways that had become heavily 
mortgaged to the government and then had gone broke. 
Not from choice but out of necessity — national necessity — 
the government undertook this enormous extension of public 

Moreover, the Canadian government owns and operates 
one of the two telegraph systems of the country, one of the 
two big hotel chains, and a fleet of steamships. They were 
all taken over when the railways were nationalized — for 

Canada, in contrast to the United States, has not believed 
in divorcing these lines of business. 

They seem to like it 

Public ownership and operation of other utilities is also 
common in Canada. The "Hydro" Commission of the On- 
tario government has long supplied at cost most of the 
power consumed in the province. Its success stimulated the 
development of provincial and municipal power systems 
throughout the country, particularly in the West. In that 
part of the country the telephone systems have also been 
commonly public enterprises from the time they were first 
installed. The same has been true of municipal transporta- 

Perhaps stranger still to us is what happened when pro- 
hibition was repealed in Canada — a decade before we re- 
pealed it, because in Canada the constitution was not in- 
volved. The Canadians refused to restore the old private 
liquor traffic. Instead, each of the provinces established a 
public monopoly, with conveniently located government 
stores selling liquor only in containers for consumption ofl" 
the premises. Unlike most other government businesses in 
Canada, which have been operated to serve the public at 
cost, this one has been run for profit — and the profits have 
been very large. 

During the 1930's the Dominion government entered two 
other fields which we Americans also usually regard as 
within the proper domain of private enterprise: radio and 
air transportation. 

The Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC) of the 
federal government owns and operates the only national 
chain of stations in the country. There are still 100 private 
stations ; but these are supervised by CBC, and their total 
power is scarcely more than a quarter that of CBC sta- 
tions. There are also private airlines in Canada, but the 


only national system, operating from Atlantic to Pacific, 
is the federal government's Trans-Canada Airlines. 

The motive behind these latest government enterprises 
was the same as that which had prompted the federal gov- 
ernment to build railways. National unity had to be pro- 
moted in the face of the sectional pull exerted by our coun- 
try. Canadians believe the result has justified the effort. 

Our major political parties may differ somewhat on the 
issue of government versus private enterprise, but the 
corresponding parties in Canada do not. The Conservatives 
have been just as responsible as the Liberals for all this 
development. As a rule, Canadian public enterprises in the 
economic field are kept out of politics. 

What did World War I do to Canada? 

The depression taught the United States, rather painfully, 
how much our economic welfare is bound up with that of 
the rest of the world. But Canada is three or four times 
more dependent upon foreign trade than we are. It can- 
not help itself. Nature is responsible for the situation. 

During the opening years of this century, the main- 
spring of Canadian prosperity was the rapid development 
of the Prairie Provinces. People were rushing in to build 
a whole new society on a foundation of wheat. It was a 
fat land, best suited to the production of this king of all 

Industrial Europe was willing to pay a profitable price 
for all that the Canadian prairie could supply. Wheat 
poured out of the West and across the Atlantic. The Do- 
minion became one of the world's chief exporters of wheat. 

When World War I jumped the prices of food fast and 
far, the Canadian West almost doubled its wheat acreage 
and increased its livestock by a third. War demands 
caused an unprecedented exploitation of the country's for- 
est and mineral resources also — in British Columbia, in 


northern Ontario and Quebec, and in the M&ritimeg. Yet 
of all the extractive industries, agriculture still supplied 
the great bulk of Canadian exports. 

Another industry, however, was catching up and at the 
end of the war accounted for more exports than agricul- 
ture. It was manufacturing. World War I made the Do- 
minion one of the leading manufacturing countries in the 
world and transferred to Canadian ownership much of the 
foreign capital invested in the country. 

World War I had yet another important effect. Up to 
this time the external economic relations of Canada had 
been chiefly with Britain. Thenceforth they were with the 
United States. We got more than half the Canadian trade, 
and New York replaced London as the money market in 
which Canada was most interested. It was then that 
American investments in Canada l>egan to be heavy. 

Belirren the wars 

The l!)2()'s saw further important changes in the national 
economy of Canada. British Columbia became a gnal 
exporter of lumber. Much more important was the gigan- 
tic expansion of its pulp and paper industry to meet the 
demands of the Orient as well as of the United States. 
Greater still was the development of mining and smelting 
in that part of the Dominion. The immense power required 
by these new industries was got by harnessing the tumbling 
rivers to provide electricity. 

The same kind of development, only much more of it, 
took place in northern Ontario and Quebec — on the Pre- 
Cambrian shield. This development was highly important 
to the prosj>erity of Central Canada, which then became 
more industrialized that ever. It supplied these provinces 
with a new mainspring to replace the old one that was 
pretty well worn out — the expansion on the prairie. The 
products of the new North were almost all exported, and 


AGRICULTURE $742,020,(3007- .".$ 1,691,540,000 

FORESTRY 244,564,571 429,079,260 

TRAPPING 6,572,824 23,801,213 

FISHERIES 35,593,009 64,821,702 

ELECTRIC POWER... 142,320,725 200,345,240 

MINING 374,415,674 514,109,951 

MANUFACTURES. . . . 1,428,286,778 3,309,973,758 

CONSTRUCTION 176,661,077 310,917,190 

CUSTOM & REPAIR.... 99,086,100 139,349,000 

TOTAL $2,974,673,454.... $6,258,464,61 3 

* Includes sawmills, pulp and paper mills, etc., which are included in the 
other headings above. This duplication amounts to $274,847,304 in 1938 
and $425,472,701 in 1942 and is eliminated from the grand total. 

most of the income they brought back was spent in the 
protected domestic market. 

The new pulp and paper plants, smelters, and hydroelec- 
tric developments required huge capital expenditures. 
Where did the money come from? Some from the United 
States, but relatively little. Most came from Canadian 
savings. The ownership of the country's wealth was more 
than ever concentrated in Central Canada, and there chiefly 
in Montreal and Toronto. 

Centralized financial control did not mean a greater uni- 
fication of the economic life of the Dominion, however. 
When the prairie was the one great area producing for ex- 
port and the market was across the Atlantic, the main 
movement of the country's trade was transcontinental. It 
bound eastern and western Canada together. Now there 
were two new important export areas. Their trade flowed 
north and south, for their principal market was in thr 
United States. So the new movement of trade made for 
regional independence instead of the interdependence that 
the old movement had promoted. 

In one fundamental respect the Canadian economy was 
still the same. Though the country had added two baskets 
(pulp and paper, and metals) to its one (wheat), all three 
baskets still had to go to market outside the country. 
Canada could not escape from its vital dependence on for- 
eign trade, and in a way this dependence was greater than 
before. It was extended beyond the prairie, where the 
alternative was wheat or subsistence farming, to other big 
regions, where the alternative was worse. There it was 
lumber or nothing, pulp and paper or nothing, nonferrous 
metals or nothing. 

The depression which began in 1929 hit Canada much 
harder than the United States, for the prosperity of Can- 
ada was much more tied up with international trade. The 
provinces that suffered most were the Prairies, for the col- 


lapse of the grain market shattered the foundations of 
their economic life. A great readjustment then began, at 
first slowly and then more rapidly. It was a shift from 
wheat to mixed farming. The result was that western 
Canadian farmers got a lower income than before. But 
they were also less dependent on world conditions. 

What now and in future? 

By the time World War II broke, Canada, like our country, 
had pretty well recovered from the depression. As the first 
war changed us from a debtor to a creditor nation, so the 
second World War changed Canada into one of the three or 
four creditor countries of the world. Once again the prairie 
prospered greatly. This time, however, barely a third of 
its total production was wheat. Feed grains took its place, 
for there was a great swing to livestock (beef and pork), 
dairying, and poultry. 

As before, however, most of the production was for ex- 
port. This of course revived the problem of markets at the 
end of the war, for Canada cannot begin to consume the 
food that its West is capable of producing. 

This is equally true of other main lines of production. 
The war caused an enormous expansion that put Canada in 
top position among the nations of the world in production 
of nickel, newsprint, asbestos, platinum, and radium; sec- 
ond in gold, aluminum, wood pulp, hydroelectric power, and 
the building of cargo ships; third in copper, lead, and zinc; 
and fourth in the production of war supplies for the United 
Nations — that is, in manufacturing. 

Most of us have little idea of the huge size of some of 
these Canadian industries. Take newsprint, for example. 
Canada has a mill capacity four times that of any other 
country. It is equal to the combined capacities of the 
United States, Britain, Norway, Sweden, and Finland. 
Canada can use only a small percentage of the newsprint 


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turned out by its mills. We produce no comparable sur- 
plus, not even of cotton. And newsprint is only one of 
many surpluses that Canada must export if it is to main- 
tain its standard of living. 

All this means that Canada is very much more interested 
than we are in getting the freest possible international 
trade in peacetime. We talk of that as something desirable, 
but Canadians see it as a necessity. 



Canada, of its own free will, entered the war in September 
1939 because it then realized that Nazi Germany threat- 
ened the very existence of Western civilization. 

Almost from the beginning Canadians were in the thick 
of the fighting — in the air. In that element the Dominion 
made its most striking contribution to the general war 
effort. On the outbreak of hostilities, the British Common- 
wealth Air Training Plan was established in Canada to 
develop the air forces of Britain, Australia, and New Zea- 
land, as well as of Canada. It was under the direction of 
the Royal Canadian Air Force, and it cost the Canadian 
government well over 1.5 billion dollars. 

Here it may be well to note that Canada's population is 
only about one-eleventh that of our country. We have to 
multiply Canadian figures by eleven, therefore, to get the 
approximate American equivalent of Canada's war effort. 

By 1944, the Royal Canadian Air Force had a strength 
of more than 200,000. This was only a part of what Can- 
ada did in this line, for at the same time nearly half the 
ground crew personnel and more than a quarter of the air 
crew strength of the Royal Air Force were also Canadians. 

The Royal Canadian Navy, which started from scratch in 
1939, grew to 700 ships and 95,000 men. This force too 

was in the tight from almost the beginning. It partici- 
pated in the daring rescue at Dunkirk, and it took over 
more and more of the Allied convoy work across the north 
Atlantic — half of it by 1943 and most of it by the end of 

The Canadian army numbered in 1944 about half a mil- 
lion men, five-sixths of whom had volunteered for overseas 
service. Some of it formed most of the force that suffered 
disaster at Dieppe in the summer of 1942. Some fought 
alongside Americans and British in Sicily and Italy. But 
the main military effort of the Canadians began in June 
1944 with the landing on the beaches of Normandy, and 
continued with the fight across France and into Germany. 

Canadian units were out in Hong Kong when the Japs 
attacked it on Pearl Harbor Day, and the Canadian declara- 
tion of war against Japan was made the evening before our 
declaration. A battalion of Canadian troops took part in 
the landing on Kiska in the Aleutian Islands. 

Canada did not receive a cent of lend-lease aid from 
us. Instead of receiving, she supplied it to the United 
Nations. The total at the end of 1944 was some 4 billion 
dollars, which is more dollars per capita than our lend- 
lease contribution. On the economic side, the war placed 
a more severe strain on Canadians than on us. The aver- 
age Canadian citizen paid more taxes and, on the whole, 
was subject to more rigid controls. He knows what the 
war cost and, let us be frank, he knew it longer than we did. 

Canada's place in the world is much bigger than it ever 
was before. Though not a great power, Canada is no 
longer a small one. It is one of the middle powers — per- 
haps the strongest of them — and as such is bound to play 
an important part in the affairs of the world. 

In the organization of UNRRA, the "world community 
chesi," Canada has stood next to the United States and 
the United Kingdom. 


The Bretton Woods Agreement on international mone- 
tary stabilization embodies much of the plan submitted by 

Canadians played a leading role in the Chicago confer- 
ence on international civil aviation; and the conference 
selected Canada as the seat of the interim organization, 
which is to prepare the way for the new world organiza- 
tion that will regulate civil aviation. 

Canada also left its stamp upon the work of the San 
Francisco Conference, particularly the constitution of the 
Economic and Social Council. The General Assembly of the 
United Nations Organization early in 1946 elected Canada 
a member of the Economic and Social Council. 


World history probably offers no example of closer 
friendly relations between two nations than those of Can- 
ada and the United States. This development of cordial 
relations has been under way for more than a century and 
a quarter. It has been no accident. It is the result of 
methods used by Canadians and Americans to face and 
solve their mutual problems. 

This pamphlet turns the spotlight on our oldest good 
neighbor. Discussion leaders have in Canada a subject 
that will interest nearly any group of Americans. During 
World War II. Canadians and Americans fought the same 
enemies, provided vital supplies for mutual allies, coordi- 
nated home front production, and maintained joint groups 


to handle mutual war problems. Canadians fought on the 
major fronts of the war against Germany and Italy. They 
defended convoys crossing the submarine-menaced Atlan- 
tic. They took over the military protection of strategic 
Iceland in 1940 during the darkest months of the war. 
They helped defend coasts of Great Britain when Invasion 
fears were greatest. They served a valuable liaison role 
between the United States and Great Britain. 

In discussing Canada and its people, you are considering 
the nation geographically the largest in the Western Hemi- 

Aids Up make discussion more interesting 

A good map of North America, or separate maps of Canada 
and the United States, will be helpful in discussing the 
Dominion. If you cannot. get these, you might use the map 
in this pamphlet as the basis for drawing a rough outline 
map on the blackboard. On this you can indicate Canada's 
nine provinces, the Yukon, and Northwest Territories. 
You can also demonstrate in this way Canada's geo- 
graphic position in respect to the United States, Alaska, 
and Newfoundland. A map or globe of the world would, 
help members of your group appreciate Canada's position 
in respect to world ship lanes and air routes. 

War Department Education Manual, EM 1, GI Round- 
table: Guide fur Discussion Leaders, will prove a valuable 
aid to you in outlining and planning your discussion pro- 
gram. It describes in considerable detail the relative mer- 
its of various discussion methods, such as panel, symposium, 
forum, and informal group discussion. The size of your 
particular discussion group- and the facilities for your meet- 
ing will probably determine which method is best for your 
particular situation. 

If you wish to plan a discussion program to be broadcast 
over a radio station or a loud-speaker system of the Armed 


Forces Radio Service, you will find valuable assistance in 
EM 90, GI Radio Roundtable. 

A local library may have some of the publications sug- 
gested in this pamphlet for further reading. It may also 
have a periodical reference and other guides for finding 
further interesting and authentic material on Canada. 

Below you will find numerous questions proposed for dis- 
cussion. As you prepare your program you will probably 
think of other important questions that would be both in- 
teresting and valuable to raise for discussion. Members of 
your group will appreciate the opportunity to ask their 
own questions as the discussion progresses. 

Questions for discussion 


Would it be a good thing if peoples of other nations moved 
across each others' borders as freely as do Canadians and 
Americans? Is the average American's interest in Canada 
likely to be greater or less now that the war is over? What 
do you believe are the basic reasons why Canada, a small 
nation in population, and the United States, a large nation, 
have lived side by side so harmoniously? 


Does Canada's Pre-Cambrian shield, covering so large a 
land area, indicate that the Dominion must always have a 
small population? How do Canada's major geographic areas 
differ from ours? Do you think the Yukon and Northwest 
Territories have an important future? What is the signifi- 
cance of Canada's geographic position in relation to post- 
war international air routes? 

Since peoples of British and French origins live together 
harmoniously in the United States, why does the English- 


French racial problem remain so pronounced in Canada? 
Were French Canadians justified in their opposition to 
conscription for overseas service? Did World War II in- 
crease or decrease the racial unity of Canada? 

Is the Canadian or American form of federal govern- 
ment more democratic? Is Canada's system of permanently 
appointed judges a better or worse one than ours for ad- 
ministering justice? Would our government be improved 
if the president and members of his cabinet could be ques- 
tioned directly on the floor of Congress, as the prime minis- 
ter and his ministers can be questioned in the Canadian 
House of Commons? Is the right to call a general election 
at any time, rather than having elections at fixed intervals, 
an advantage or disadvantage? Does the Canadian consti- 
tution afford a better or poorer balance of executive, legis- 
lative, and judicial authority than does our Constitution? 

Do you think Canada benefits or suffers by its two re- 
maining limitations on complete autonomy — appeal to the 
Privy Council of London and amendment to its constitution 
through the British Parliament? What would Canada lose 
in relations with the United States if a new Empire govern- 
ment were to be set up to coordinate British Commonwealth 
international policies? With other nations? Would Can- 
ada's membership in the Pan American Union strengthen 
or impair its position in the British Commonwealth? Would 
Canada's Pan American Union membership benefit the 
United States? Latin- American countries? 


Could peacetime international joint committees or boards 
to handle United States-Canadian economic or other mutual 
problems operate as successfully as did the various wartime 


joint groups? Did World War II increase or decrease Can- 
ada's influence among other nations? 

Why is public enterprise popular in Canada and un- 
popular in the United States? Can we learn valuable lessons 
from Canada's experience with public ownership of utilities, 
radio, railroads, and airlines? 


Should future trade between the United States and Can- 
ada be encouraged by lower tariffs or discouraged by higher 
ones? Does Canadian industry offer serious competition to 
United States industry? Agriculture? Could the Urtfted 
States-Canadian example of cooperation and friendly neigh- 
borliness be followed by other nations with mutual bound- 
aries? What steps could be taken to strengthen United 
States-Canadian relations in the future? 


These books are suggested for supplementary reading if you have 
access to them or wish to purchase them from the publishers. They 
are not approved nor officially supplied by the War Department. They 
have been selected because they give additional information and repre- 
sent different points of view. 

Building the Canadian Nation. By George W. Brown. 
Published by J. M. Dent and Sons, Aldine House, 224 
Bloor St., W., Toronto 5, Canada (1942). $2.25. 

A Short History of Canada for Americans. By Alfred 
L. Burt. Published by University of Minnesota Press, 
Minneapolis 14, Minn. (1<>44). $3.00. 

Canada— An Introduction to a Nation. Published by 
Canadian Institute of International Affairs, 230 Bloor St., 
W„ Toronto 5, Canada. (194.3). 10 cents. 


Dominion of the North. By Donald G. Creighton. Pub- 
lished by Houghton Mifflin Co., 2 Park St., Boston 7, 
Mass. (1944). $3.50. 

Canada: Our Dominion Neighbor. By Merrill Denison. 
No. 46 of Headline Series, published by Foreign Policy 
Association, 22 East 38th St., New York 16, N. Y. (1944). 
25 cents. 

Canada and the Building of Peace. By Grant Dexter, 
Published by Canadian Institute of International Affairs 
(1944). $1.00. 

The Unknown Country: Canada and Her People. By 
Bruce Hutchison. Published by Coward-McCann, 2 West 
45th St., New York 19, N. Y. (1942). $3.50. 

The Unguarded Frontier, A History of American-Cana- 
dian Relations. By Edgar Mclnnis. Published by 
Doubleday, Doran and Co., Garden City, N. Y. (1942). 

Canada: Member of the British Commonwealth and 
Good Neighbor of the United States. By Frederick G. 
Marcham. No. 1 of Curriculum Series in World History, 
published by Cornell University Press, Ithaca, N. Y. 
(1943). 40 cents. 

Canada and the United States. By Francis R. Scott. No. 
2 of America Looks Ahead, a series of pamphlets pub- 
lished by World Peace Foundation. 40 Mt. Vernon St., 
Boston 8, Mass. ( 1941 ) . 25 cents. 

The Canadians. The Story of a People. By George M. 
Wrong. Published by Macmillan and Co.. 60 Fifth Ave., 
New York 11. N. Y. (1938). $3.50. 

In Canada It's Different. An article by Bruce Hutchison 
in Fortune, August 1945. 



Introductory COPIES of each new Gl RoundtabU pamphlet are auto- 
matically issued to information-education officers in the United Suites 
and oversea areas. Additional copies are authorized on the basis of 
one copy for each 25 military personnel. Pamphlets may be requisi- 
tioned from the United Suites Armed Forces Institute, Madison 3, 
Wisconsin, or from the nearest USAFI Oversea Branch. List EM 
number, title, and quantity. New subjects will be announced as pub- 
lished. CI itoutidtahlc subjects now available: 

Guide for Discussion Leaders 

What Is Propaganda? 

What Shall Be Done about Germany after the War? 

What Shall Be Done with the War Criminals? 

Can We Prevent Future Wars? 

How Shall Lend-Lease Accounts Be Settled? 

Is the Good Neighbor Policy a Success? 

What Shall Be Done about Japan after Victory? 

What Has Alaska To Offer Postwar Pioneers? 

Will There He Work for All? 

Why Co-oi's? What Are They? How Do They Work? 

What Lies Ahead for the Philippines? 

What Is the Future of Television? 

Can War .Marriages Be Made To Work?* 

Do You Want Your Wife To Work after the War? 

Shall I Build a House after the War? 

What Will Your Town Be Like? 

Shall I Go Back to School? 

Shall I Take Up Farming? 

Does It Pay To Borrow? 

Will There Bfl a Plane in Every Garage? 

Will the French Repubijc Live Again? 

Our British Ally 

Our Chinese Ally 

The Balkans- Many, Many Problems 

Australia: Our Neighbor "Down Under" 

What Future for the Islands of the Pacific? 

Our Russian Ally 

Gl Radio llou notable 

* Fur Jitlribntian in On UniU-U &\nlv* only. 

Fur «*lt? by tht- SuiH-rinli'inU-nt of Durumi-nt*. U. S. Gnvrrnnw-nl Print in£ llflin- 
\Y;i-hiiiKlitM -:-. 1>. C. - Prira |f» i>nl* 






























EM 31, 

KM 32, 



























Our Oldest Good Neighbor