Media Resources: Chapter 12

CBC Archives

Free Trade Agreement
With a stroke of his pen, Prime Minister Brian Mulroney formally set in motion the Free Trade Agreement (FTA) with the United States. The FTA later received parliamentary approval, became law, and was subsequently superseded by the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) between Canada, the United States, and Mexico. In this report we hear of the on-going opposition to the FTA, which was in vain, as Canada today continues to pursue free trade agreements the world over.

Canada and the International Criminal Court
Under Liberal Minister of Foreign Affairs Lloyd Axworthy, Canada took an activist approach to international relations in the late 1990s. In this interview with the CBC's Don Newman, Axworthy explains the impetus to establish a permanent court to adjudicate crimes against humanity, an International Criminal Court.

NATO Forces Guard the Peace in Afghanistan
For the first time in its 54-year history, NATO is embarking on a mission outside Europe. Approximately 1,900 Canadian troops, serving with the NATO forces, are stationed in Kabul, Afghanistan to guard the peace after the fall of the ruling Taliban regime. In their non-combat role, Canadians will advise and assist the Afghan transitional authority. "The peace that you're bringing us today, through your contribution, is bringing to the Afghan people institution-building for the future of this country," says Afghan President Hamid Karzai in this CBC Television news report.

Ottawa Abuzz over Obama
There is no international relationship that is more significant for Canada than the one with the United States. A month after he was sworn in as president in January 2009, Barack Obama took his first official visit to a foreign state—that is, to Canada. In this report, CBC TV's The National sums up the trip and the great excitement surrounding the presidential visit.

Hungarian Refugees Welcomed to Canada
A Christmas tree decorating her bow, the ocean liner Arosa Sun arrives in Quebec City on 9 December 1956, carrying 257 refugees. The passengers, who fled Hungary after the Soviets crushed an uprising that began in October of that year, are greeted by federal and Quebec City officials and more than 3,000 people on the docks. CBC Newsmagazine cameras follow the group as they are processed through a welcome centre with a hot meal, warm clothing, and medical examinations. The newcomers also sample North American popular music, try out their new English language, and children play that most Canadian game: table-top hockey.

Pierre Trudeau’s Peace Mission Reaches China
Astounded onlookers watch Canada's prime minister ascend the steps of China's Great Hall of Leaders on 28 November 1983. The visit had been kept under wraps. Even the Peking papers haven't written much about Pierre Elliott Trudeau's meeting with Chinese Premier Zhao Ziyang. The two world power figures discuss nuclear disarmament over ornamental pots of Chinese tea. This is not Prime Minister Trudeau's first visit to China. Trudeau travelled there in October 1973 after the Canadian government officially recognized the communist country, opening diplomatic relations between the two nations. He had been continuing the initiative started by his successor Liberal Senate Leader Paul Martin of recognizing communist states, something Western powers have avoided since the beginning of the Cold War.

Cruise Missile Testing Coming to Canada
It's Friday afternoon and Parliament is not in session but the demonstrators are out in full force, waving their protest flags. The federal government just confirmed that American cruise missile testing will be performed in remote areas of Canada. Foreign Affairs minister Allan MacEachen says that the tests pose no threat to Canadians. But critics say this is a dangerous operation and question Prime Minister Trudeau's commitment to disarmament.

A history of US–Canada leaders’ meetings
Prime Minister Brian Mulroney is off to Washington, DC to meet with US President Ronald Reagan in March 1986. While no one expects a reprise of last year's Shamrock Summit in Quebec City, there's no doubting the cozy relationship between the two. But the leaders' bonds have not always been so tight. John Diefenbaker thought John F. Kennedy was privileged and arrogant, and Lyndon B. Johnson was unhappy with Lester B. Pearson's meddling in the Vietnam War.

TVO's The Agenda

Canada’s New Approach to the UN
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has vowed to strengthen Canada's relationship with the United Nations, including a renewed peacekeeping force, and a plan to seek a seat at the Security Council in 2021. Marc-André Blanchard, Canada's newly appointed ambassador and permanent representative to the United Nations, joins The Agenda to discuss Canada's past, present and future with the UN.

Foreign Policy in a Digital World
Canada's role in world affairs has often relied on the power of persuasion rather than on might, or even economic heft. In an era when digital technology is fundamentally changing the understanding of what power on the international stage means, the pathways of influence are changing. Taylor Owen, professor of digital media and global affairs at the University of British Columbia, joins The Agenda to discuss whether Canada can keep its standing in the world.

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