Pearson, Hon. Lester B.
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A joint meeting of The Empire Club of Canada and The Canadian Club of Toronto.
The complicated and difficult time for foreign policy. Reasons why that is so. Scientific achievements outstripping social and moral development. The special difficulties of the formulation of foreign policy for a country like Canada. The issue now that is, at the risk of over-simplification, freedom vs. slavery. The emergence of the two powerful leaders of these opposed sides: the United States of America and the U.S.S.R. The struggle one of policy, except in Korea. Building up a force now so that armed force may not be necessary in the future. The chance of accidental war. The likelihood that the present situation of war without warfare may continue for years. The need to adapt tactics. The duality of the present conflict, and the requirement for dual policies--short term and long term policies--military and civil--which should be complementary and not contradictory. One or two practical problems with which we are faced. The problem in our domestic policy, as to what proportion of our resources should be devoted to our own defence, whether that defence takes the form of national action at home or collective action with our friends abroad. Playing our part in the collective security action of the free world. Deciding what that proper part is. Being the judge of our international obligations and how they can best be carried out for Canada. What our role should be in the United Nations; the role of the United Nations itself in the present conflict--a discussion. The question of Canadian-American relations in this two-power world of conflict: the most difficult and delicate problems of foreign policy that Canada has yet faced. Preventing ripples from becoming angry waves which may weaken the foundation of our friendship. The days of relatively easy and automatic political relations with our neighbour over; why that is so. Foreign affairs now the business of every Canadian family and the responsibility of every Canadian citizen.