The 1940 Ogdensburg Agreement entrenched a formal defence relationship between Canada and the United States. But was Canadian sovereignty upheld? Drawing on untapped archival material, Sovereignty and Command in Canada–US Continental Air Defence, 1940–57 documents the close and sometimes fractious relationship between the two countries. Richard Goette challenges prevailing perceptions that Canada’s defence relationship with the United States eroded Canadian sovereignty. He argues instead that a functional military transition from an air defence system based on cooperation to one based on integrated and centralized command and control under NORAD allowed Canada to retain command of its forces and thus protect Canadian sovereignty. Goette combines historical narrative with conceptual analysis of sovereignty, command and control systems, military professionalism, and civil-military relations. In the process, he provides essential insights into the Royal Canadian Air Force’s paradigm shift away from its Royal Air Force roots toward closer ties with the United States Air Force and the role of the nation’s armed forces in safeguarding its sovereignty.
By Lieutenant-General Pierre St-Amand
1 Command and Control, Sovereignty, Civil–Military Relations, and the Profession of Arms
2 Command and Control Culture and Systems
3 Wartime Planning for Command and Control
4 Wartime Operational Level Command and Control
5 Replacing ABC-22
6 Organizing and Coordinating Canada–US Air Defences
7 The US Northeast Command
8 Integrating North American Air Defences under Operational Control
Appendices; Notes; Selected Bibliography; Index
Richard Goette is an air power academic and Canadian air force historian who is an assistant professor in the Royal Military College of Canada’s Department of Defence Studies located at the Canadian Forces College in Toronto. He is an associate editor-in-chief of the RCAF Association’s flagship publication, Airforce magazine, and also a research associate with the Laurier Centre for Military Strategic and Disarmament Studies in Waterloo. Dr. Goette was recently awarded a Commander of the RCAF Commendation for contributions to Canadian air power and RCAF history and heritage research, publications, and professional military education.
Goette has successfully produced a deeply researched work that is the first significant study of the development of Canadian-US continental defense in the post-Second World War era and, as such, it will remain the go-to book for those looking to understand the origins of this unique relationship for the foreseeable future.
~Brian Laslie, Deputy Command Historian, NORAD and USNORTHCOM, From Balloons to Drones
Richard Goette’s book is clearly a labor of love. Goette is a historian and airpower expert, and this book represents a deep dive into the decisions and debates between 1940 and 1957 that created the command and control (C2) architecture of the North American Air Defense Command (NORAD) (now North American Aerospace Defense Command).
~Andrea Charron, H-Net