M965.199.4567 | Where's Joe?

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Drawing, cartoon
Where's Joe?
John Collins
About 1944, 20th century
Ink, crayon, graphite and opaque white on card
37.9 x 28.1 cm
Gift of Mr. John Collins - The Gazette
© McCord Museum
Keywords:  Cartoon (19139) , Drawing (18637) , drawing (18379) , politics (10928)
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Keys to History

For a nation of eleven million people, Canada had made a significant contribution to World War II in manpower, industry and resources. Canada wanted recognition for its efforts, and its diplomats lobbied for a share in war and postwar international decision making. The cartoon shows U.S. president Roosevelt and British prime minister Churchill in discussion as Canada's prime minister King looks on (Russian leader Joseph Stalin is absent). The United States and Britain were not willing to share strategic planning. If they granted Canada a share in the decision making, they would have to do the same for all of the other small powers. Nevertheless, as a major food producer, Canada managed to secure a place on the Combined Food Board, which distributed the Allies' scarce food supplies. Canada made a place for itself as a wartime middle power by arguing that nations that made a significant contribution in a particular area should have representation on the bodies dealing with that area. This was called the "functional principle."

  • What

    Canadians felt that their war effort entitled them to a say in international affairs.

  • Where

    Canada's diplomats pressed their case for a share in decision making in Washington and in London.

  • When

    Starting in 1942, Canada fought for a role in the making of decisions that affected its national interests. It won representation on the Combined Food Board on October 27, 1943.

  • Who

    Prime Minister King and an able group of diplomats in External Affairs made a strong case for a seat on many international organizations.