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Ibbitson calls for North American Environmental, Economic and Security Accord

Globe and Mail columnist John Ibbitson writes in his new book ‘Open & Shut’ that, “The time has come — in fact, we are overdue for a North American Environmental, Economic and Security Accord.”

Vancouver Sun columnist Barbara Yaffe comments, “The two nations would retain their distinct sovereignty but there would be no more passports or work visas. The continent would see a free flow of goods, services and people; common rules for immigration and refugees; joint inspection of shipping containers from abroad; an integrated terrorist watch list; a system of security enforcement around the perimeter of the continent.”

She adds that beyond Ibbitson’s call for a North American Environmental, Economic and Security Accord, “former foreign affairs minister David Emerson (has) called for a ‘Project North America’ to more closely align Canada-U.S. policies.”

Yaffe laments, “For all the merits of Ibbitson’s arguments, any reconciliation of longstanding border problems between Canada and the U.S. inevitably will be characterized by gradualism. The suggestion that the border should be vapourized remains so provocative an idea on both sides of the line, it’s bound to shut down rather than inspire discussion.”

Yaffe’s column is at http://www.vancouversun.com/story_print.html?id=1602647&sponsor=.