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Canada's quixotic foreign policy in the shifting global landscape

by Randolph Mank

September 2019

Abstract

Cold War Two has begun and Canada has been caught off-guard with a virtue-signaling foreign policy inadequate to the country's interests. The main confrontation is between the U.S., the established power, and China, the potential usurper. But it will play out this time like multi-dimensional chess, with nuclear-armed Russia, India, Pakistan, North Korea, and possibly Iran and others, all presenting potential flashpoints. The two main competitors will prefer to avoid direct confrontation, except in trade and technology. Their conflicts will spread into other states, as for example in the case of the current Huawei affair, which sees both Canada and Iran caught in the middle and being punished by the superpowers. The prescription for Canada is an interests-based foreign policy aimed at greater self-reliance, though this will be easier said than done. Canada's multilateral efforts need to be more purposeful, as in the last Cold War.

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