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  Friday, August 23, 2019
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Canada is already a partner with the United States in a defense system designed to stop incoming missiles from terrorists
Canada's new ambassador to the United States discovered this week that stating the obvious can cause a public relations disaster. Frank McKenna, who is expected to arrive in Washington next month, told Canadian reporters that Canada is already a partner with the United States in a defense system designed to stop incoming missiles from terrorists or rogue states such as North Korea. What the Toronto Sun called "the simple truth" sparked cries of outrage from political opponents of Liberal Prime Minister Paul Martin. He was denounced on the right by Conservative spokesmen and on the left by the New Democrat Party and the French-Canadian separatist bloc in the House of Commons, reports the Washington Times. Prime Minister Paul Martin said Thursday that Canada would opt out of the contentious U.S. missile defense program, a move that will further strain brittle relations between the neighbors but please Canadians who fear it could lead to an international arms race. Martin, ending nearly two years of debate over whether Canada should participate in the development or operation of the multibillion-dollar program, said Ottawa would remain a close ally of Washington in the fight against global terrorism and continental security. He said he intended to talk to President Bush later Thursday and that Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice had been informed of the decision earlier this week. A State Department official, speaking on condition of anonymity, said the United States had been informed beforehand of the decision, adding that Washington expects that cooperation with Canada will continue on a wide variety of issues, tells CNN News
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