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Old 05-30-2012, 08:38 AM
 
Location: Mississippi Delta!
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I have read that Canada is known for using "soft power" (moral persuasion) to end conflicts in the world, rather than "hard power" (threat and use of force - associated with the U.S.). Can anyone give examples of where Canada's soft power has been successful?
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Old 05-30-2012, 08:49 AM
 
Location: Gatineau, Québec
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U.N. peacekeeping (with the blue helmets) was a Canadian idea and has been used to successfully quell many conflicts around the world over the past half-century or more.
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Old 05-30-2012, 09:45 AM
 
Location: Canada
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The whole point of softpower is it's low on big achievements that the country can take full credit for. Instead, Canada greases the wheels of international relations and gets multi-lateral initiatives to work where they'd otherwise flop. We have to wield power this way, we don't have the traditional power to go it alone but we have enough clout to make a difference in the course of world events. One notable triumph was the Montreal Protocol that banned the CFCs that were wrecking the ozone layer. We're also the nation that came up with the plan for, and largely are responsible for founding, the G20. Most recently, the Harper government used the moral authority given us by our fairly good economic standing to make economic arguments on the world stage about how to handle the crisis, and it's no coincidence Mark Carney ended up the head of the Financial Stability Board. Also not a coincidence a Canadian general was in charge of all international forces in Libya as Canada's brand lent the mission legitimacy.
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Old 05-30-2012, 01:03 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BIMBAM View Post
The whole point of softpower is it's low on big achievements that the country can take full credit for. Instead, Canada greases the wheels of international relations and gets multi-lateral initiatives to work where they'd otherwise flop. We have to wield power this way, we don't have the traditional power to go it alone but we have enough clout to make a difference in the course of world events. One notable triumph was the Montreal Protocol that banned the CFCs that were wrecking the ozone layer. We're also the nation that came up with the plan for, and largely are responsible for founding, the G20. Most recently, the Harper government used the moral authority given us by our fairly good economic standing to make economic arguments on the world stage about how to handle the crisis, and it's no coincidence Mark Carney ended up the head of the Financial Stability Board. Also not a coincidence a Canadian general was in charge of all international forces in Libya as Canada's brand lent the mission legitimacy.
Yeah soft force slips under the radar. It's very multi-dimensional. Simply having oil workers in libya, made canada at the forefront of the issue.
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Old 05-30-2012, 01:08 PM
 
Location: Fishers, IN
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The reality, though, is that Canada always has hard power at its disposal in the form of the U.S. military. Don't think that other countries don't know this.
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Old 05-30-2012, 01:13 PM
 
Location: Mississippi Delta!
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Originally Posted by grmasterb View Post
The reality, though, is that Canada always has hard power at its disposal in the form of the U.S. military. Don't think that other countries don't know this.
I don't recall the United States sending troops to other places in the world because Canada wanted us to. I think it has been the other way around, though.
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Old 05-30-2012, 01:19 PM
 
Location: Fishers, IN
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Originally Posted by Chris Balducci View Post
I don't recall the United States sending troops to other places in the world because Canada wanted us to. I think it has been the other way around, though.
More often than not the interests of the two counties are aligned. Thus, Canada doesn't really have to ask. I'm saying this not as a slam on Canada. It's a rather enviable position, actually. Canada can always go to another country and basically say, "Hey, I'm offering you the carrot. My neighbor has a very big stick he's willing to use. Your choice."
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Old 05-30-2012, 01:23 PM
 
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Originally Posted by grmasterb View Post
More often than not the interests of the two counties are aligned. Thus, Canada doesn't really have to ask. I'm saying this not as a slam on Canada. It's a rather enviable position, actually. Canada can always go to another country and basically say, "Hey, I'm offering you the carrot. My neighbor has a very big stick he's willing to use. Your choice."
Exactly: basically the world knows that if they attack Canada (or Saudi Arabia or a host of other countries in which the USA has an "interest"), the USA would come to its aid. And all I can say to that is "Thank God!"
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Old 05-30-2012, 01:41 PM
 
Location: Mississippi Delta!
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris Balducci View Post
I don't recall the United States sending troops to other places in the world because Canada wanted us to. I think it has been the other way around, though.

What I meant by the last part is that it seems to me Canada has sent troops to conflicts where the United States was involved because we wanted them to. If the Canadian public had their way, I seriously doubt Canada would have ever been involved in Middle East wars.
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Old 05-30-2012, 01:44 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Chris Balducci View Post
What I meant by the last part is that it seems to me Canada has sent troops to conflicts where the United States was involved because we wanted them to. If the Canadian public had their way, I seriously doubt Canada would have ever been involved in Middle East wars.
According to the polls I've seen that were taken in the USA, if the American public had its way, the US wouldn't be involved in those wars either. Unfortunately both of our federal governments do pretty much whatever the hell they want.
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