UK/Canadian Embassy Mash-up


So what do you get when you cross a Canadian foreign office with the British diplomatic service? Cost savings and a new efficient diplomatic corps? More money for trade offices in other-one-time-colonies? Or as those critical of Ottawa's latest pairing predict increased security risks and foreign policy dominated by the so-called Anglosphere. We are discussing the twinning of diplomacy. 

UK/Canadian Embassy Mash-up

We started this segment with a a clip from Foreign Affairs Minister John Baird with a plan for Canada to save some cash while abroad. Canada and Britain will begin sharing embassy space and resources at some diplomatic missions. They're not suggesting crowding in together in Washington, but they are planning to share offices in smaller countries, as they already do in Haiti and Burma.

NDP Leader Thomas Mulcair was nevertheless critical -- and wondered, why stop there? We aired a clip.

Hoisting the Union Jack and the Maple Leaf together at diplomatic missions abroad has some wondering what this will mean for Canadian interests and independence.

To talk about all this, we were joined by three people.

Paul Heinbecker is Canada's former ambassador to the UN and Director of the Centre for Global Relations at Wilfrid Laurier University in Waterloo, Ontario. He's also the author of Getting Back in the Game: A Foreign Policy Playbook for Canada and he was in our Ottawa studio.

Allan Gotlieb served as the Canadian Ambassador for the US from 1981-1989 and he was in Toronto.

And Jennifer Welsh is a professor of international relations at Oxford University and author of a book about Canadian foreign policy called At Home in the World. We reached her at her home in Oxford.

This segment was produced by The Current's Idella Sturino, Josh Bloch and Ben Edwards.

Other segments from today's show:

The death of Corporal Stuart Langridge

From the Ruins of Empire: Pankaj Mishra

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