How Stephen Harper changed Canadian foreign policy, and how Justin Trudeau is trying to turn it around.
From 2006 to 2015, Stephen Harper charted a new course for Canada’s foreign policy, turning away from multilateralism and refusing to “go along to get along” on the world stage. Justin Trudeau, in only his first few months in power, used his personal celebrity to rebrand Canada as a more sympathetic country in an attempt to swing the pendulum back to something more familiar. However, navigating Canada’s path forward in the world will take more than “sunny ways.”
Chronicling Canada’s journey under these two prime ministers of the early twenty-first century, Swingback examines the ways the country’s relationships with the United Nations, Israel, Iran, and Russia changed under Harper’s leadership, and how this has affected the situation the Liberals have inherited. From the war zones of Afghanistan, Iraq, and Libya to meetings with world leaders, Mike Blanchfield traces Canada’s birth as a global actor since the end of the Second World War and delves into the trenches of domestic political battles and the challenges of the present day, drawing from extensive on-the-ground research as a practising journalist.
An uncompromising analysis of Harper’s foreign policy legacy and the emerging priorities of the Liberal government, Swingback repositions Canada in this turbulent world.