There are many major moments to define how great Canada is. They lead up to what Canada is today. Without these moments, we probably wouldn’t be recognized as a country, or be such a mixed country. Our economy went up with more land sold to settlers. This lifted Canada out of the small depression in the 1870s and1880s. The land was relatively cheap too, as the land was only $10, or $150 in today’s economy1. In World War I, Canada was first recognized as a nation at the battle of Vimy Ridge, where Canada came out from under the shadow of Great Britain. To accomplish this, they would need to take many precautions, like eight crucial tactics that changed warfare in World War I2. Canada also proved them once more in World War II in the battle of Juno Beach, where they successfully broke Hitler’s Atlantic wall with the allies. This was the largest sea attack in History. Most of the men who also went on to storm the beach had no combat experience at all3. These main events and much more are the reasons why Canada is such a great country.
Firstly, one of the greatest moments achieved moments by Canada is the battle of Vimy Ridge. They were ordered to attack it in April 1917. Ths heavily-defended base was seven kilometers and held an imposing view of allied forces. The Frech had attacked this base 3 times and failed all times. These failed attempts had over 100 000 casualties. The Canadians came up with eight war innovations, with Sir Arthur Currie in charge of the attack, the Canadians had maps of the battlefield, and were given watches to coordinate attacks. To prepare the soldiers took another seven-kilometer ridge and practiced on there. On the real battlefield, other soldiers dug tunnels under enemy lines and fired loads of artillery shells onto the German forces. After the soldiers had practiced, they went on to attack the ridge. The barrage of shells doubled on April 2nd, 1917. On April 9th at 5:30 am, the attack on Vimy Ridge started. During the attack, the soldiers had to move at 100 yards per 3 minute, or else they would die. As one of the commanders stated, “Chaps, you shall go over exactly like a railroad train, on time, or you shall be annihilated.” Most of the objectives were captured by noon, the others were captured on April 12th, 1917. This shaped the Canadian identity and Canada came out of Britain’s shadow. Many people had new pride for Canada, as did one person who said, “in those few minutes I witnessed the birth of a nation.” They did, as Canada go to sign the Treaty of Versailles as well. Canada had proven that it can be powerful on its own4.
Another reason for why Canada is so great is that it is a very diverse nation. People from all around the world are living in the country. One of the main reasons for this is the immigration policy from 1896 to 1914. With the small depression from the years 1870-80s, the person in charge of immigration at the time named Sir Clifford Sifton decided that it was the right time to increase immigration. Sifton came up with the slogan “Canada: The Last Best West.” The “Last” meant that the American prairies ha already been brought up. The “Best” meant that this land was the best in the world. And finally, the “West” meant that this was on the Western side of Canada. This land was relatively cheap too, of up to 160 acres of land could be bought up for $10 or $150 in today’s society5. This also helped with Canada’s economy, as the land was bought up for money in mass amounts. The people on the land also farmed a lot bringing beautiful bounties each season. Saskatchewan was even defined in the terms “…there is no part of the American continent where there are such uninterrupted stretches of plough land as in this Province….if there is such a thing as a soil whose fertility is inexhaustible by cropping, it is certainly here.” Some farmers were very successful as well, having very big plots of land and making a lot of money. It was a bold move by Canada, and a good one too, as everyone was profiting6.
Finally, one of the finest accomplishments is the attack on Juno Beach or the battle of Normandy. Since 1939, the war against Germany had been mostly a stalemate. Although, in 1944 another battle was won, and the Allies were moving through Italy. Attacking through France would be a more difficult task, as Hitler built an Atlantic wall on the coastline. This way would be very heavily guarded. The Germans expected an attack on the coastline ear the old Belgian border since it was the shortest way into France from Great Britain. To fake out the Germans from the attack on Normandy, a fake army made out of wooden and paper maché tanks were built in England and set to the fake area where the Germans expected the attack. The original attack was originally supposed to be on June 5th, 1944, but this was postponed due to bad weather. Mass amounts of planes dropped paratroopers from the air. Although many of them missed their landing zones, most did eventually make it to their rendezvous points. The naval armada was colossal, with over 6 900 warships (110 of them being Canadian), the fleets bombarded German defenses. After the bombardments, the first waves were deployed onto the beaches. Many soldiers died, and it took many hours, but the beaches were finally secured, and supplies were brought to shore. The Atlantic wall had been broken through, and it was only a matter of time before all of Germany would fall7.
These events lasting a day or several years are part of the reason why Canada is such a great country. We have had many feats of battle, some have changed how we battle forever. On the attack of Vimy Ridge, Canadians thought of men not as disposable, but crucial and gave them watches and maps. They used a new strategy, and to a fort that was unsuccessfully attacked 3 times over8. On the battle of Normandy, Canadians attack Juno beach, and after the day was over, the beach was captured. This led to the decline of Germany, and the downfall of Hitler9. During the days when Canada was still young, Canadians let other races into the parties, making this Country so diverse today10. These reasons and much more make Canada one of the best countries to live in.
1 “THE LAST BEST WEST,” Romanian Pioneer Museum, accessed January 09, 2018, http://boianalbertamuseum.com/historical-background/immigration/the-last-best-west/.
2 Tim Cook, “The Battle Of Vimy Ridge,” Canadian War Museum, accessed January 11, 2018, http://www.warmuseum.ca/the-battle-of-vimy-ridge/.
3 Richard Foot, “Battle of Normandy,” The Canadian Encyclopedia, Febuary 7, 2006, accessed January 09, 2018, http://www.thecanadianencyclopedia.ca/en/article/normandy-invasion/.
4 Tim Cook, “The Battle Of Vimy Ridge,” Canadian War Museum, accessed January 11, 2018, http://www.warmuseum.ca/the-battle-of-vimy-ridge/.
5 Florin Dydra, “THE LAST BEST WEST,” Romanian Pioneer Museum, , accessed January 12, 2018, http://boianalbertamuseum.com/historical-background/immigration/the-last-best-west/.
6 Ruth Bitner, “The Last Best West,” Western Development Museum – Artifact Articles – The Last Best West: Homes For Millions, January 2004, , accessed January 12, 2018, https://www.wdm.ca/artifact_articles/lastbest.html.
7 Richard Foot, “Battle of Normandy,” The Canadian Encyclopedia, February 7, 2006, , accessed January 14, 2018, http://www.thecanadianencyclopedia.ca/en/article/normandy-invasion/.
8 Tim Cook, “The Battle Of Vimy Ridge,” Canadian War Museum, accessed January 11, 2018, http://www.warmuseum.ca/the-battle-of-vimy-ridge/.
9 Richard Foot, “Battle of Normandy,” The Canadian Encyclopedia, February 7, 2006, , accessed January 14, 2018, http://www.thecanadianencyclopedia.ca/en/article/normandy-invasion/.
10 Ruth Bitner, “The Last Best West,” Western Development Museum – Artifact Articles – The Last Best West: Homes For Millions, January 2004, , accessed January 12, 2018, https://www.wdm.ca/artifact_articles/lastbest.html