Memorial Day – Canuck Edition

Richard Florida passes along this snippet from The illustrated History of Canada:

American draft dodgers in Canada were far outnumbered by the young Canadians who joined U.S. forces to fight in Vietnam.

This factoid may be in that category Stephen Colbert would call “truthy” and Dan Rather would call “false but true.”

Canada did not participate in the Vietnam War for a variety of reasons.  Still, “about 30,000” Canadian citizens volunteered to fight with U.S. and other Western forces and 110 of them were killed in action and have their names on the Vietnam Memorial. According to Wikipedia, “Canadian immigration statistics show that 20,000 to 30,000 draft-eligible American men came to Canada as immigrants during the Vietnam era; estimates of the total number of American citizens who moved to Canada due to their opposition to the war range from 50,000 to 125,000.”

Regardless, the fact remains that a huge number of Canadian citizens volunteered to fight in a controversial war and a not insignificant number died there.  They, along with others in the Anglosphere (sorry, Québécois) have long been America’s most stalwart wartime allies, willing to pick up a rifle when others would not.

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James Joyner
About James Joyner
James Joyner is Professor and Department Head of Security Studies at Marine Corps University's Command and Staff College and a nonresident senior fellow at the Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security at the Atlantic Council. He's a former Army officer and Desert Storm vet. Views expressed here are his own. Follow James on Twitter @DrJJoyner.

Comments

  1. Dave Schuler says:

    The Viet Nam War was nominally a SEATO operation and Canada wasn’t a member of SEATO. Some actual members, UK and France, didn’t support it. However, SEATO members Australia and New Zealand did and sent troops.

  2. DC Loser says:

    It’s a two way street. Remember that many Americans went to Canada to sign up for service in the Canadian military in WWI and WWII during the period of American neutrality.

  3. Triumph says:

    hey, along with others in the Anglosphere (sorry, Québécois) have long been America’s most stalwart wartime allies, willing to pick up a rifle when others would not.

    The Canucks helped us in the Civil War, as well. Remember that Lieutenant Edward Doherty–born in Canada–was the guy who caught John Wilkes Booth.

    They were a bit more problematic during the Spanish American War where they gave Spanish diplomats asylum and profited mightily when US-Europe shipping lanes were disrupted.

    Those bastards still owe us for that.