Wednesday, Mar. 12, 2014 12:28PM EDT
They were, for a prime minister, remarkably sharp words. In Seoul this week, Stephen Harper took direct aim at Ford Motor Co. of Canada Ltd., dressing the company down for what he called duplicity in its criticism of the newly concluded free-trade agreement with South Korea.
It’s more than a little ironic, then, that car makers form the Prime Minister’s best hope at furthering his trade ambitions with Japan, where a new round of free-trade talks will start in less than two weeks.More »
Wednesday, Mar. 12, 2014 9:00AM EDT
Even by the standards of a Twittersphere where anonymous snark is common, the personal attacks by the Twitter account known as @RichardGoldston were extraordinarily nasty. Hiding behind a fake biography and a stolen photo, the account targeted anyone who was critical of the Rwandan government, using vicious gossip and misogynistic slurs to assault its enemies.More »
Tuesday, Mar. 11, 2014 11:38AM EDT
There was, back in the closed-off rooms where the leaders of Canada and South Korea spoke in Seoul Tuesday, a surprise guest: Wayne Gretzky.
He wasn’t there in person, but in spirit, called on first by the South Korean president, Park Geun-hye. She suggested that “you miss 100 per cent of the shots you don’t take.” Mr. Harper, the hockey historian, was not to be outdone, dropping his own reference to skating where the puck is headed, another famous Gretzky-ism.More »
Tuesday, Mar. 11, 2014 10:00AM EDT
The United States has had 57 presidential elections, and every one of them has been different – different circumstances, different candidates, different technologies, different strategies, different tactics. The electorate itself has been different – the early ones only among land holders, later ones only among males, until the 1960s largely without black voters, and until 1972 with no voters under the age of 21.More »
Tuesday, Mar. 11, 2014 6:00AM EDT
When former Russian businessman Mikhail Khodorkovsky announced he was coming to Kiev to lend support to the country in its struggle with Russia over Crimea, many Ukrainians were overjoyed.
Mr. Khodorkovsky is considered a hero for those who view Russian President Vladimir Putin as a tyrant who stifles dissent. Once Russia’s richest man and a fierce Putin critic, Mr. Khodorkovsky spent 10 years in a Russian jail on charges many say were trumped up, only to be released in December via a pardon on the eve of the Sochi Olympics.More »
Monday, Mar. 10, 2014 11:00AM EDT
It’s a conversation that, if accurate, would mean the West needs to rapidly reinterpret what’s happening in Ukraine: In an audio recording posted online, the Foreign Minister of Estonia sounds like he’s suggesting that it was the country’s pro-Western opposition, not the security forces of the deposed Viktor Yanukovych, who used deadly ammunition against the crowds on Kiev’s Independence Square last month.More »
Monday, Mar. 10, 2014 6:00AM EDT
It’s a dilemma all revolutionaries have to face sooner or later. What do you do when the revolution is over?
That’s a question now being posed at Kiev’s Independence Square, or Maidan, the site of three months of protests against Ukraine’s President Viktor Yanukovych. (Maidan is also a new shorthand for the protest movement). Since last December, thousands of people have stayed in the square day and night, facing off against government security forces over a network of elaborate barricades that cut off much of the downtown core. But with Mr. Yanukovych now gone, a new interim government in place and the world’s attention turned to the drama playing out in Crimea, what’s to become of Maidan?More »
Friday, Mar. 07, 2014 12:36PM EST
American conservatives unite! That’s the rallying cry of the 50-year-old American Conservative Union that is holding its big Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) outside Washington this weekend.
And it’s an impressive gathering: Every potential candidate for the 2016 Republican nomination for president is here.More »
Thursday, Mar. 06, 2014 10:01AM EST
To get a sense of the vast physical distance between Beijing and Urumqi, the capital of China’s far western Xinjiang province, all you have to do is get on a train – as I did a few years ago.
From platform to platform, the journey took 45 hours. It wound through farmer’s fields and coal-covered industrial cities and eventually the Gobi desert before depositing me on the other side of the country, in another world entirely – a world of minarets and muezzin calls, of lamb kebabs and nomadic pastoralists. In my case, I didn’t stop there. I got straight on a bus and rode for another 24 hours along the northern lip of the searing Taklamakan Desert, deeper and deeper into the heartland of the Turkic Uyghur people that have lived in this incredibly harsh climate for centuries.More »
Wednesday, Mar. 05, 2014 7:54AM EST
Men walk hand in hand with other men throughout village Africa, and even in cities. Almost everywhere affection and love between men and between women has been common, and generally accepted. None of this behaviour has heretofore been in the closet, but now it must be, given draconian punishments recently mandated by legislation in Nigeria, Uganda, and other sub-Saharan countries.More »
Tuesday, Mar. 04, 2014 8:41AM EST
It’s Budget Day in Washington. Its importance this year is in signaling the future direction of U.S. defence policy. It is also another reminder of the differences in our two systems of government.
Traditionally devised in secret, Canada’s budget day is the highlight of the parliamentary calendar. There are new shoes for the finance minister and live media coverage of the speech and opposition reaction. Governments rise or fall on the subsequent confidence motion.More »
Tuesday, Mar. 04, 2014 7:30AM EST
As an act of political theatre it will be a good one, like it always is. This Wednesday, rows of suits will wander in to Beijing’s Great Hall of the People, which adjoins Tiananmen Square to the west. Mixed in will be representatives of the country’s 55 minorities, who typically dress in traditional garb, all assembling to decide the future of China.More »
A former diplomat, Colin Robertson is vice-president of the Canadian Defence and Foreign Affairs Institute and (Hon.) Captain, Royal Canadian Navy.
Stephanie Nolen is the Globe's Latin America correspondent. She has reported from more than 40 countries and is a five-time winner of the National Newspaper Award for coverage that has taken her from war zones to AIDS clinics to camel races, and a three-time winner of the Amnesty International Media Award.
Follow Stephanie on Twitter @snolen
A former journalist, Marina Jimenez became president of the CCA in April, 2013
Paul Heinbecker is a former Canadian ambassador to the United Nations and chief foreign policy advisor to Prime Minister Brian Mulroney.