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Camelot and CanadaCanadian-American Relations in the Kennedy Era$
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Asa McKercher

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780190605056

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: August 2016

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780190605056.001.0001

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Atomic Anxieties

Atomic Anxieties

Berlin, BOMARCS, and the Bomb, 1961–1962

(p.88) 3 Atomic Anxieties
Camelot and Canada

Asa McKercher

Oxford University Press

Common Cold War interests united Canada and the United States in the summer of 1961 as a crisis with the Soviet Union over the status of Berlin had the potential to devolve into war. As this chapter makes clear, Berlin and the related fear of a nuclear conflict led Canada to closely align itself with the United States, but also led many Canadians to champion disarmament and oppose the Canada–US military alliance. These competing forces had a profound impact on Diefenbaker’s handling of defense policy, toward which the Kennedy administration displayed patience and understanding—though frustration began to grow over Canadian hesitancy about accepting nuclear weapons.

Keywords:   Berlin Wall, Berlin Crisis, Cold War, Soviet Union, nuclear weapons, nuclear security, Canada–US relations, John F. Kennedy, John Diefenbaker, disarmament

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