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Today is Remembrance Day in Canada. We remember the soldiers who fought and died in war.

It is not uncommon around this time of the year to hear persons admonishing us to remember those who have died and to appreciate the freedoms we have for which their deaths have made possible.

I have always wondered whether the world wars (or say the Korean War) helped preserve the freedoms we have in Canada. None of the wars were on Canadian soil and Canada entered the war as a member of the British Commonwealth. Had any of the dictators in the world wars been successful in their goals, would they have been intent on occupying North America? Were Canada’s freedoms ever in true jeopardy?

7 thoughts on “Freedom

  1. (Kim, this is your fifth topic in two days! You’re a blogging machine! I must not be keeping you busy enough with lengthy debates.) :)

  2. But can/could Canada in good conscience have simply enjoyed its freedom (protected by isolation) while watching other countries languishing as hostages of either Nazi or communist slave empires? I agree with you that it was not necessary for Canada to support those wars for its own self-preservation, but would it have squandered a moral obligation had it chosen not to do so? That is perhaps the more fundamental question.

    I am not posing the questions to ambush you with a preconceived conclusion. Rather, I am asking in good faith, partially out of the temptation I have to throw up my hands and say that a new period of isolationism is just what the United States needs. Tell the world: we will no longer help you, we will no longer send troops to protect you or solve your problems, we will retreat within our own borders, fortify ourselves, and enjoy our own prosperity, so don’t ask us for any help and don’t expect any. In some ways, that seems a very welcome prospect, especially when so many countries who are supposed to be our allies, countries who do not belong to slave empires today precisely because America spent its blood and treasure to prevent it, lecture and criticize the United States in its foreign policy, a foreign policy that has promoted continued peace and prosperity on a world-wide scale (for the most part) for sixty years now. None of this implies that American foreign policy is perfect, especially considering the debacle of the Iraq War. It is just an expression of frustration at the current state of things.

  3. They may not have in the WW I and II or Korean etc.. but the other wars yes I believe they would have. And actually they did during WWII. I remember my parents telling me of being in school and “soldiers” coming in and destroying the statues of Christ that was on the wall and making them all “hit the floor”. She rarely spoke of it and we just learnt not to bring it up again so I really can’t give you the detailed specifics.

    I don’t think, and this is my personal opinion, that we don’t go to war just to help out. We do it to help keep world peace and if we ever did go under attack during another war, we could be more at ease knowing the other nations would also come to our aid.

    But I may just be too polyannish.

  4. John,

    Don’t get me wrong. I am not suggesting Canada should have participated in these wars. I am just wondering Canada’s own freedoms were ever in jeopardy; whether our soldiers fighting in those wars guaranteed us those freedoms.

  5. I think Canada’s freedom depended (and continued to depend) in large part on the freedoms of other nations. The USA also could have sat back and watched Europe fall, but there must have been a sense that once Europe went, the Western Hemisphere would come next.

  6. I’ve often asked myself this very question….

    Was there really any danger of the Germans, the Germans (not a typo), or the Chinese/Koreans/Vietnamese ever invading our soil?

    And if it’s a principle thing, then why aren’t we involved in more armed conflicts to such an extent, such as Somalia, Iraq, the Gaza, etc….

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