• US-Mexico and Canada Trade Ties: What is the Way Forward? The Economic and Strategic Imperative of Getting It Right

    With US-Mexico relations at a historic low, Mexico is asking itself whether the bet it made twenty-three years ago on a future of cooperative economic prosperity integrated markets and security building between the three North American countries was a good one.

    In order to assess the economic and strategic importance of the relationship between the North American countries, the Atlantic Council’s Adrienne Arsht Latin America Center hosted a timely lunch with distinguished experts. Following introductory remarks by Senior Vice-President for Strategic Initiatives and Director of the Adrienne Arsht Latin America Center, Peter Schechter,Former Secretary of Commerce Carlos Gutierrez gave opening remarks on the current situation of the US-Mexico relationship and the shroud of uncertainty that masks the future of an integrated North America.

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  • Johnston in the Cipher Brief: The Outlook for Energy Cooperation between Canada and the United States

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  • Are Canada's Interim Fighters Obsolete-on-Order?

    The DND must ensure that the RCAF's replacement for the CF-18s can defend North America against emerging threats.

    The Liberal Government of Canada has announced that it intends to swiftly sole-source 18 F/A-18E Super Hornets to fill a perceived capability gap. The need flows from Defense Minister Harjit Sajjan’s views of existing treaty obligations under NORAD and NATO. The Royal Canadian Air Force, however, has stated that its 77 existing CF-18s will last at least to 2025, even if the loss rate for the type has increased of late. Whoever is correct, and however the government proceeds in replacing the fighter fleet, missile threats to North America are rising. The incoming Trump administration in Washington will bring heightened expectations for what NORAD and NATO really mean. Thus, the Department of National Defence must find new planes that are at least upgradeable for directly addressing these emerging threats.

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  • Will Trump’s Foreign Policy Make Any Sense?

    The election of Donald Trump marks a turning point in the world of international relations. Speculation abounds as to what he’s going to do, but his policies remain unknown, possibly unformed.

    Still, this doesn’t discourage us from speculating as well as poring over the resumes of his appointments to date. But the only certainty is that Trump will tack in many directions throughout his term without regard to norms, history or past tradeoffs.

    We know Trump will replace diplomacy with the Art of the Deal or no-nonsense negotiating strategies. This involves deploying any and all techniques to achieve a desired “deal” or goal, from seduction to threats, trash talk, anger, baiting, insults, shame, guilt, bullying, bribes, and fear.

    This is how he drove sixteen other Republican primary candidates off the stage, took over what remained of the Republican Party, and insulted Hillary Clinton to win at the ballot box.

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  • Romania and Bulgaria to Host Greater NATO Presence in the Black Sea Region

    NATO member state officials meeting in Brussels agreed to boost the alliance’s military presence along its entire eastern flank from Bulgaria to the Baltics.
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  • Danish Team Removes 500 Tons of Chemical Weapons From Libya

    From the AP:  A Danish-led international operation to rid Libya of its chemical weapons has removed 500 tons of chemicals from the North African country, Denmark said Wednesday.
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  • Why Canada is Leading a NATO Battalion in the East Instead of France

    Canada announced at the recent Warsaw Summit that it would deploy at least 450 soldiers to Latvia, becoming one-of-four "framework" nations in a 4,000 person, high-readiness multinational brigade.
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  • An Arrow II for Canada?

    The RCAF’s divergent commitments to NORAD and NATO suggest that none of the fighters on offer are quite right for its needs.

    Canada’s Department of National Defence has had quite a time over the past two weeks at both the NATO Summit and the Farnborough Air Show. The DND is now preparing to deploy 450 troops, the nucleus of a battalion group, to Latvia next year, as part of the four-battalion NATO brigade approved at the meeting in Warsaw. As Murray Brewster of CBC News wrote, the federal government has also “renewed a commitment to provide six CF-18 fighter jets for air policing duties over the Baltic states, a mission the air force last conducted in 2014.” With all this activity, Defence Minister Harjit Sajjan admits concern about Canada keeping its commitments to both NORAD and NATO on a dwindling fleet of usable jets. Some furthering thinking about both the various jets and those twin commitments shows how it’s possible that none of the available aircraft are quite right for Canada’s needs.

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  • Canada to Send Troops to Latvia for New NATO Force

    With Crimea still under Moscow's rule and war raging in eastern Ukraine, [Canadian Defense Minister Harjit] Sajjan acknowledged Friday the fielding of the new NATO brigade is a serious step, but one that Canada is prepared to wholeheartedly support.

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  • North American Leaders’ Summit Furthers COP-21 Climate Goals

    The climate change partnership announcement made by the leaders of Canada, the United States, and Mexico at the North American Leaders Summit on June 29 continues the political ambition of the three countries to work toward a low-carbon future. The announcement follows commitments made in the COP-21 Paris climate agreement to reduce carbon emissions.

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