FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
CANADA ON THE WORLD STAGE: A FORCE FOR GOOD OR A BAD ACTOR?
SUDBURY, ONTARIO, September 15, 2009 – On Monday, September 21, 2009, Sudbury Against War and Occupation will host author Yves Engler, who will give a talk and audiovisual presentation taking apart popular myths about Canada's role in the world. This talk will be based on his new book, The Black Book of Canadian Foreign Policy (Fernwood Books Ltd., Halifax). The event will take place in the 4th floor resource centre of St. Andrew's Place, 111 Larch Street, Sudbury, at 7 pm.
The Black Book of Canadian Foreign Policy is the first critical overview of Canada's role on the world stage. While most Canadians believe their country's primary role has been as peacekeeper or honest broker in difficult-to-solve disputes, the book cites hundreds of examples of colonialism, racism, naked self-interest and willing participation as a policeman for the British and then American empires. World renowned intellectual and social critic Noam Chomsky has written, "Yves Engler's penetrating inquiry yields a rich trove of valuable evidence about Canada's role in the world."
Here are the top ten things Engler thinks you may not know about Canadian foreign policy:
10. On dozens of occasions since 1915 Canadian gunboats have been deployed to the Caribbean and Central America.
9. Canada has been the fifth or sixth-largest contributor to the U.S. war in Iraq.
8. Ottawa asked London for its Caribbean colonies after World War I.
7. Days after elected President Salvador Allende was overthrown, Canada's ambassador to Chile called victims of dictator Augusto Pinochet's repression the “riffraff of the Latin American Left.”
6. In a number of countries Canadian “aid” has been used to rewrite mining codes to the benefit of Canadian mining companies.
5. Canada had between 250 and 450 nuclear-armed fighter jets based in Europe in the 1960s.
4. Washington did not press Ottawa to break relations with post-revolution Cuba because it wanted Canada to spy on the island.
3. Throughout Pierre Trudeau's time in office and before, Canadian companies were heavily invested in apartheid South Africa.
2. Canada helped depose Congolese Prime Minister Patrice Lumumba, one of Africa's first independence leaders, who was then killed.
1. Many commentators, including the world's leading intellectual, Noam Chomsky, consider Lester Pearson a war criminal.
Sudbury Against War and Occupation is a group of Sudbury residents concerned with all forms and consequences of war and occupation. The organization started in early 2007 to object to Canadian support for and involvement in the ongoing occupations of Afghanistan and Iraq. They have also been active in supporting the struggles of indigenous peoples in North America and in opposing the occupation of Palestine.
For an advance interview in French or English and information about the book, contact Yves Engler at yvesengler[at]hotmail.com. For more information about Sudbury Against War and Occupation please email sudburyawo[at]gmail.com.
Please come out and have a listen if you are in the area! (For the FaceBook event, click here.)