In the 20th century, many countries worldwide were constantly struggling against each other to achieve and maintain a high reputation. Canada was at a very high position in the world because the success of their soldiers in the many wars they have fought and their peacekeeping operations. Canada attained such a high reputation because of their success in The Great War, their efforts in other wars such as, World War II and the Korean War, and their many peacekeeping operations with the United Nations. Over the 20th century, Canada has grown from a struggling country into a respected world power by its efforts in its foreign affairs, whether they be peacekeeping missions or wars.
Canada sent many soldiers to Europe to aid the Triple Entente through the Great War and due to the courage and skill demonstrated through the battles they’ve fought, Canadian soldiers were recognized as intimidating, successful soldiers, thus increasing Canada’s reputation (Cook, 2004). An example that shows both the bravery of Canadian soldiers and Canada’s rise in reputation was the battle of Vimy Ridge. Due to the fact that Vimy Ridge was under German control and allowed German soldiers to see the allies’ lines, Germany had a major advantage which made it increasingly difficult for Canadian troops to attain this ridge (Cook, 2004). However, after four days of fighting, Vimy Ridge was successfully captured and Canada and its troops earned a respectful reputation. In conclusion, because of their soldiers’ notable success during the Great War, Canada was able to sign the Treaty of Versailles separately under Great Britain, was allowed to join the League of Nations, and obtained control over its foreign affairs, thus making itself known to many countries worldwide (Encyclopædia Britannica, 2007).
Similar to the previous paragraph, Canada’s efforts in both World War II and the Korean War has raised Canada’s reputation, not as much as the Great War has, but to a certain extent. Unlike World War I, It was not necessary for Canada to enter the Second World War, due to the fact that they now had control of their foreign affairs, but they chose to do so anyway. During World War II, there were two major battles that affected Canada and its troops significantly. First was the Dieppe Raid on August 19, 1942, which failed horribly and cost Canada nearly 4 000 casualties (Newman, 1999). Next was the Battle of Juno Beach on June 6, 1944 which is also known as D-Day. Canadian soldiers were responsible for overcoming German soldiers and capturing Juno Beach (Newman, 1999). They courageously fought their way to the towns, taking down enemy strong points and eventually achieving their assigned mission: to get seven miles inland (Barris, 2004). In addition to the battles fought in World War II, Canada has fought in the Korean War with the United Nations, an association consisting of respected countries. Canada and 16 other countries in the United Nations declared war on North Korea on June 25, 1950 (Munroe, 2003), (The Korean War, 2001). For about 3 years North Korea and South Korea fought against each other; South Korea backed by Canada and the United Nations and North Korea backed by Russia, and later, China. Finally after three years of unproductive fighting, South Korea and North Korea agreed on an armistice on 27 July, 1953 (The Korean War, 2001). Though it seemed that Canada did not do very much in the Korean War, its presence in the United Nations made it a well known country. Through Canada’s war involvement in the Korean War and World War II, Canada has proven itself worthy of being called a respected world power.
Lastly, Canada has contributed in many peacekeeping operations and has created a positive reputation for itself. An important and historic event that started the peacekeeping missions of Canada and the United Nations was the Suez Canal Crisis in Egypt. Due to the fact that the Egyptians closed the Suez Canal in 1956 to the British and the French, and the fact that the Suez Canal is an important passage that allowed countries to trade with each other, Britain and the France convinced Israel to attack Egypt. Because of the Canadian external affairs minister, Lester B. Pearson’s suggestion to send troops over to keep the peace, the Suez Crisis was worked out and though there was still tension between Egypt and Israel, peace remained in the Middle-East (Canada: The World’s Peacekeeper, 2003). Due to his suggestion to send peacekeepers to maintain the peace, Lester B. Pearson received the Nobel Peace Prize in 1957, and became the “most important figure in Canadian peacekeeping history.” (Canada: The World’s Peacekeeper, 2003). The United Nation’s mission was to maintain peace in the world and Pearson’s suggestion about sending troops to Suez to maintain the peace was an effective way of doing so (United Nations’, 2005). Because of Lester B. Pearson and his peacekeeping efforts for the UN, Canada has a peacekeeping reputation and, because of this, is known as one of the most respected world powers internationally.
Canada’s peacekeeping missions and its troops’ courage during wars in the 20th century have made an exceedingly good reputation for Canada. Firstly, Canada success in The Great War, especially in the battle of Vimy Ridge, has proved Canada and its soldiers to be very successful. Secondly, Canada’s efforts in World War II and the Korean War proved that Canada was in a very high position in the world, and lastly Canada’s Lester B. Pearson’s suggestion of sending troops to Suez to keep the peace proved Canadian soldiers to be peacekeepers. Canada’s contribution through the 20th century has, without a doubt, changed history significantly, thus allowing Canada to be recognized as one of the elite countries in the world.
Canada and World War I. (n.d.) Retrieved December 21, 2007, from Canada and World War I Web site:
Cook, T (2004, September 14). Retrieved December 20, 2007, from War Museum Web site:
In Encyclopædia Britannica. (n.d.) Retrieved December 20, 2007, from Encyclopædia Britannica Online:
Juno: Canadians at D-Day June 6, 1944, (2004) Ted Barris, National Library of Canada Cataloguing in Publication
Munroe, S (2003, July 27 ). Canada and the Korean War. Retrieved December 20, 2007, from About.com: Canada Online Web site: http://canadaonline.about.com/b/2003/07/27/canada-and-the-korean-war.htm
Newman, D (1999, November 11). Remember Those Who Fought Three Canadian Battles. Retrieved December 20, 2007, from Suite101.com
(2001, February 6). The Korean War, June 1950 – July 1953 -. Retrieved December 20, 2007, from Online Library of Selected Images Web site: http://www.history.navy.mil/photos/events/kowar/kowar.htm
(2001-04-23). Lester Bowles Pearson. Retrieved December 20, 2007, from Library and Archives Canada Web site:
(2003, October 30). Canada: The World’s Peacekeeper . Retrieved December 21, 2007, from Militaryphotos.net Web site: http://www.militaryphotos.net/forums/showthread.php?t=4240
(2005, 24 August). United Nations’ Beginnings, Purpose, Structure Profiled. Retrieved December 21, 2007, from USINFO.STATE.GOV Web site: http://usinfo.state.gov/xarchives/display.html?p=washfile-english&y=2005&m=August&x=20050824162913adynned4.766482e-02