Could the Cold War have been avoided if Roosevelt had lived?

Stalin's habit of doing precisely what he could get away with made the Cold War inevitable

Could the Cold War have been avoided if Roosevelt had lived?It was 70 years ago this April that Franklin D. Roosevelt died. Although he’d been in failing health for some time, the details of his condition had been carefully kept from the general public and his passing from a massive stroke on April 12, 1945, thus came as a shock. In an era before the…

Pierre Trudeau’s last rollercoaster ride

Trudeau’s fourth and final term was to be his most controversial of all

Pierre Trudeau’s last rollercoaster rideThere was a whiff of unreality in the air as Canada’s 32nd parliament met for its inaugural session in the spring of 1980. Mere months earlier, Pierre Trudeau had been consigned to the political scrapheap and Joe Clark’s newly-minted Tory government was settling-in for what most people assumed would be a semi-decent run. Logically, it…

Saint Patrick and the art of public relations

Separating fact from fiction can be difficult, but St. Patrick definitely won the war for popular historical memory

Saint Patrick and the art of public relationsGrowing-up in Dublin in the 1950s, Saint Patrick’s Day wasn’t the big deal that it is now. Oh, the fact that it was a statutory holiday meant that you got a day off school or work, which was never something to be sneezed at. And in addition, if you’d promised to forsake some pleasure for…

Not even the Supreme Court is above the law

Magna Carta's 800th anniversary reminds us to kneel to no one

Not even the Supreme Court is above the lawOne of the most meaningful, hopeful, and typically unreported speeches on Parliament Hill in recent years came from Calgary's own Pierre Poilievre. Poilievre, of course, has represented a suburban Ottawa riding for a decade, but he is Calgary born and bred. He is an intellectual apprentice of the Calgary School made famous – infamous? –…

Winston Churchill and the villainous ‘Guilty Men’

An influential book from 1940 laid the guilt of appeasing Nazi Germany at the feet of 15 public figures

Winston Churchill and the villainous ‘Guilty Men’While writing a recent column on Winston Churchill, I thought about the so-called Guilty Men, that being the title of a hugely influential polemic first published in the summer of 1940. The book’s thesis was simple: Britain’s dire straits could be laid at the door of 15 public figures who were deemed guilty of having…

If Bobby Kennedy had been more like Margaret Thatcher

History may have played out differently if Kennedy had shown Thatcher’s political courage

If Bobby Kennedy had been more like Margaret ThatcherIn politics, as in life, sometimes it’s necessary to throw caution to the wind, damn the torpedoes and just go for it. Indeed, as Margaret Thatcher demonstrated 40 years ago, fortune can be induced to smile on the brave. Thatcher’s catalyst came from Conservative disappointment with the results of the October 1974 UK general election.…

World crises a clash of moral values

Western ignorance of the moral character of the struggle is leading to many mistakes

World crises a clash of moral valuesWestern civilization has shaped the modern world. Unfortunately, that world and the liberal values that underpin it are facing violent existential threats today. The most dangerous of these threats are the rise of radical Islam and a newly menacing Russia. There is a growing sense of frustration, even resignation, in the public, a belief that…

The making of the West

Rome’s influence continues to cast a shadow over Western life and culture

The making of the WestWestern civilization is under fire these days, accused of causing many of the ills that affect modern society. Many blame aggressive Western capitalism for generating a culture of greed and destroying the environment. Certainly, the most hurtful criticism of the West relates to imperialism. Admittedly, the West has been expansive over the past few centuries…

Winston Churchill: ruffian or hero?

A very useful guy to have around when the chips were down

Winston Churchill: ruffian or hero?When Winston Churchill died 50 years ago this month, it marked the end of an era. Already a shade past his 90th birthday, he was the last survivor of the Second World War’s top political leadership. And given his youthful participation in a cavalry charge at the 1898 Battle of Omdurman, it was as if…
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