April 7, 1987

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Gerald Augustine Regan

Mr. Reagan:

-offering a more stable and secure environment as we pursue our goal of deep reductions in nuclear weapons. We must move away from a situation of Mutual Assured Destruction-so aptly called MAD, the MAD policy.-We need defensive systems that threaten no one, that would save human lives instead of targeting them.

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Some Hon. Members:

Hear, hear!

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Gerald Augustine Regan

Mr. Reagan:

We must remember that the Soviet Union has spent 15 times as much on strategic defences as we have over the last 10 years, while their record of compliance with existing arms treaties continues to be a cause for concern. Most people do not understand that Mutual Assured Destruction has left our populations absolutely defenceless. This is an intolerable situation; the truly moral course is to move forward quickly with a new strategy of peace-based not on the ability to threaten lives, but on our confidence that we can save them. Let us choose a defence that truly defends.

As we have pursued better relations with the Soviet Union, we have laboured to deal realistically with the basic issues that divide that nation from the free world. Our insistence that the Soviet Union adhere to its Helsinki human rights agreement is not just a moral imperative; we know that no nation can truly be at peace with its neighbours if it is not at peace with its own people.

In recent months, we have heard hopeful talk of change in Moscow, of a new openness. Some political prisoners have been released; the BBC is no longer jammed-we welcome these positive signs and hope that they are only the first steps toward a true liberalization of Soviet society.

To the extent the Soviet Union truly opens its society-to that extent its economy and the life of its people will improve; to that extent we may hope its aggression will diminish.

Disappointingly, however, there so far has been little movement on the Soviet side toward the peaceful settlement of regional conflicts that today are flaring across the globe.

Despite announcements of ceasefires and talk of national reconciliation, the Soviet's terrible war against Afghanistan remains unabated-and Soviet attacks on neighbouring Pakistan have escalated dangerously. In Cambodia, Ethiopia, and Angola, the Soviet Union continues to support brutal wars of Communist Governments against their own people. In Nicaragua, we see such a campaign on our own shores-

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NDP
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Gerald Augustine Regan

Mr. Reagan:

Is there an echo in here?

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Some Hon. Members:

Hear, hear!

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Gerald Augustine Regan

Mr. Reagan:

Thank you. In Nicaragua, we see such a campaign on our own shores, threatening destabilization throughout Central America. This is not just a question of selfprotection; the higher principle is that the people of Nicaragua have the right to decide their own future.

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Some Hon. Members:

Hear, hear!

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Gerald Augustine Regan

Mr. Reagan:

The surest sign that the Soviet Union truly wants better relations, that it truly wants peace, would be to end its global strategy to impose one-party dictatorships- allow the people of this world to determine their own futures, in liberty and peace. We know that when people are given the opportunity to choose, they choose freedom.

Truly, the future belongs to the free. In our own hemisphere, we have seen a freedom tide sweep over South and Central America: Six years ago, only 30 per cent of the people of Latin America lived in democracies-today, over 90 per cent do. Around the world, resistance movements are rising up to throw off the totalitarian yoke. Even in China, they debate the pace of reform but acknowledge its necessity.

On the border between Canada and the United States stands a plaque commemorating over a century and a half of friendship. It calls the border: "a lesson of peace to all nations", and that is what it is: a concrete, living lesson that the path to peace is freedom, that the relations of free peoples, no matter how different, no matter how distinct their national characters, will be marked by admiration, not hostility.

Go stand along the border at the beginning of July. You will see the Maple Leaf and the Stars and Stripes mixed in a swirling cloud of visitors and celebrants. As a Canadian writer once put it: "What's the difference between Dominion Day and July 4? About 48 hours".

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Some Hon. Members:

Hear, hear!

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Gerald Augustine Regan

Mr. Reagan:

Yes, we have differences, disputes, as any two sovereign nations will. But we are always able to work them out, entre amis.

April 7, 1987

One area of particular concern to all Canadians, I know, is the problem of acid rain. When the Prime Minister and I met in Quebec two years ago, we appointed two distinguished Envoys, Bill Davis and Drew Lewis, to examine the problem. They issued a joint report, which we have endorsed, and we are actively implementing many of their recommendations.

The first phase of our clean coal technology program is under way. It is the beginning of a $6 billion commitment through 1992, and I have asked Congress for the full share of government spending recommended by the Envoys-$2.5 billion-for the demonstration of innovative pollution control technologies over the next five years.

Literally thousands of firms and millions of jobs will be affected by whatever steps we take on this problem, so there are no quick and easy answers. However, working together, we have made an important start. I am convinced that, as in the past, our disputes will bring us closer as we find a mutual accord, and our differences will become only another occasion for co-operation. Let me assure you that your concerns are my concerns.

I was struck recently by the words of a Canadian-a Hungarian Canadian you might call him-who came to this country, as so many before him, to escape oppression. He said: "I wanted to stretch. I needed a place where I could move mountains or carry larger stones than Sisyphus, and here was the place for it-nobody telling me what I'm supposed to believe as a Canadian-gave me a kind of freedom for my mind and my spirit and my creative energies that I had never experienced before in life. (And) I found that, for me, anyhow, anything could be possible here".

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Some Hon. Members:

Hear, hear!

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Gerald Augustine Regan

Mr. Reagan:

This is your Canada, and our continent. This is the chosen place in history our two nations occupy: a land where the mind and heart of man are free; a land of peace; a land where, indeed, anything is possible.

May I add a word about our discussions today on two issues of critical interest to our two countries. The Prime Minister and I agreed to consider the Prime Minister's proposal for a bilateral accord on acid rain, building on the tradition of agreements to control pollution of our shared international waters.

The Prime Minister and I also had a full discussion of the Arctic waters issue, and he and I agreed to inject new impetus to the discussions already under way. We are determined to find a solution based on mutual respect for sovereignty and our common security and other interests.

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Some Hon. Members:

Hear, hear!

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Gerald Augustine Regan

Mr. Reagan:

Thank you all very much, and God bless you.

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Some Hon. Members:

Hear, hear!

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PC

Guy Charbonneau (Speaker of the Senate)

Progressive Conservative

Hon. Guy Charbonneau (The Speaker of the Senate):

Mr. President, Mr. Speaker of the House, Prime Minister, ladies and gentlemen:

Mr. President, first of all, I would like to thank you for your visit to this country and to the Parliament of Canada, and also for the words of wisdom and encouragement you have just spoken. They confirm that Canada and the United States of America have in common, as has ever been the case, a desire to build a better, safer and more prosperous world, with a profound respect for liberty and justice. They also confirm that the special ties between our two countries are as important to you, our neighbours and American friends, as they are to us Canadians.

We are particularly pleased that your visit takes place during the Bicentennial of the birth of the American Constitution, that godchild of Montesquieu's enlightenment. It is a happy reminder of the ties between Europe and America, and gives us reason to believe that the most important event in Europe in the 18th century was the Congress of Philadelphia.

The Bicentennial of your Constitution has a profound significance for us. Without it, our own Canadian Constitution might well have been quite different. Your founding fathers were innovators in their day in that they established a federation, a bold departure in a world dominated by unitary or at best confederative systems of government. We shall always be grateful to them for setting an example of a federative system of government.

Your republican Constitution and a consciousness of the relationship between Canada and the United States played a part, too, in the naming of our country in 1867, the year of Confederation. In calling the new country "The Dominion of Canada" rather than "The Kingdom of Canada", the British Government tactfully deferred to the republican feelings of our southern neighbours. It was a gesture which showed considerable statesmanship, in that it could present Canada as a republican monarchy.

In fact, in 1787, your fellow Americans saw clearly that the office of President closely resembled that of a monarch. They proposed that the President be addressed as "His Majesty". This idea was rejected, but for a time, people still spoke of the President's "throne". As you will know, Mr. President, by another paradoxical situation, the impecunious Hamilton promoted the royal symbols, while the wealthy Jefferson pleaded for the republican emblems.

In 1867 we chose to name our Upper House the Senate, and, like yours at the beginning, it is a non-elected body. After all, it was not until 1913 that by an amendment to the Constitution your country decided to elect rather than designate Senators. In that process, the prestige and influence of the House of Representatives was somewhat diminished. I doubt that my Senate colleagues expect soon to be in a similar position vis-a-vis the House of Commons but, as you know,

April 7, 1987

history has a habit of coming up with some surprising developments!

Mr. President, you are aware of the importance to Canadians of the ties between our two countries. Sharing a continent and common values, we are in the habit of considering you as our American cousins. Although our symbols would seem to contradict each other-the star-spangled banner of the Republic and our country's sovereignty within the British Commonwealth-our relations have always reflected a profound mutual respect.

Our common political origins and our long history of amity and co-operation allow us to affirm that our friendly relations are destined for perpetuity. Your presence and your words to us today are additional proof of this, and we offer you our respectful gratitude.

We are honoured that you accepted our invitation to address us. Thank you, Mr. President.

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Some Hon. Members:

Hear, hear!

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PC

John Allen Fraser (Speaker of the House of Commons)

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Speaker:

Mr. President, many distinguished visitors address both Houses of Parliament in this Chamber, but no occasion is more welcome than when the long friendship that exists between our two peoples is manifested by the presence here of the President of the United States.

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Some Hon. Members:

Hear, hear!

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April 7, 1987