Oct 11, 2013
By Jane Brown
It began 26 years ago with a speech by then Russian President Mikhail Gorbachev. He set out a program for Arctic demilitarization and greater co-operation among the nations that share the Arctic area. Today we know the result as the Arctic Council, which Canada now chairs.
Former MP John English has written the history of this in a new book called “Ice and Water”. He told The New Classical 96.3 FM, it’s interesting how the council is seen these days by the Harper Government. “I think they’ve come to realize this is the major game in town, and we have a large place in that town geographically,” he explained, “I think the Prime Minister is sincere in his interest in the north. He tilts it perhaps toward the military side without a doubt. But you read his speeches and even his comments and he’s unusually romantic about the north. Not a quality one thinks of when one thinks of Stephen Harper.”
The book is part of Alan Lane’s History of Canada series and is published by Penguin.