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Word Count: 601
In 1900 many people still thought of Canada as a British dependency not as an independent nation As the twentieth century unfolded however there was a gradual shift from British to American influence Throughout the century Canada had something of a love-hate relationship with the United States Since 1945 we have benefited from American investment popular culture and military protection Nevertheless many Canadians have felt uneasy about our closeness to the US They have been concerned that our economy is dependent on the Americans that American culture will swamp our own that we might be drawn into military confrontations because of our relationship with the US While our proximity to the United States is advantageous it also presents a danger on annexation As Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau once stated living next to the United States is in some ways like sleeping with an elephant No matter how friendly and even-tempered is the beast one is affected by each twitch and grunt The Alaska Boundary Dispute in 1898 between Canada and the US is reveal to be one of our greatest danger of our close relationship with the US In 1867 as part of their expansion the United States had bought Alaska from Russia The purchase included the panhandle strip running down the Pacific coast and bordering on the colony of British Columbia How far inland the Panhandle extended however was hot clear In 1897 with the discovery of massive gold deposits in the Klondike region the border issue became crucial The Klondike was clearly in Canada but the US flew its flag over the region As a result Canadian prospectors taking gold out of the Klondike had to pay American duties on their way home The question of who owned the access route had to be resolved Finally in 1903 the United States and Britain agreed to set up a tribunal or special panel to make a decision on the boundary The tribunal consisted
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