The Case for a Canada-U.S. Land Swap
(Paul Rosenzweig — Macleans)
A former homeland security official says there’s an easy way to ease our border problems
Canada and America are about to resume negotiations over a cross-border customs agreement known as “land pre-clearance.” These negotiations failed in 2008 and, despite good intentions, may very well fail again. There is a better way—a land swap, formally exchanging territory on opposite sides of the border. It may take longer—but a long process that succeeds is far better than a shorter process that doesn’t.
Earlier this year, President Barack Obama and Prime Minister Stephen Harper announced a plan they called “Beyond the Border.” The main idea behind it was for Canada and the United States to co-operate on a secure perimeter for their common space—in effect, applying the NORAD model to the movement of people, goods and services into North America. This is fundamentally a good idea for both countries—like it or not, our security is inextricably linked. From a Canadian perspective, one of the major corollary benefits of a joint approach to the perimeter would be the “thinning” of the border between the two countries, facilitating travel and trade. Read more here.
Date: December 20, 2011