Watch CBSN Live

Former Canadian Cabinet Member Calls For U.S. Cooperation During Iowa State Visit

This story was written by Traci Kasperbauer, Iowa State Daily

Lloyd Axworthy, former Canadian minister of foreign affairs and current president and vice chancellor of the University of Winnipeg, called for the United States to form new alliances and find ways to cooperate with foreign countries in order to protect people around the world. Axworthy's lecture titled, "A Canadian Conversation with the New U.S. President," took place Thursday night in the Iowa State University Sun Room.

He said if Americans are willing to find solutions to global issues, other countries would be willing to comply.

Were talking about finding something that allows and enables us to work together, to find resolutions of our common issues and differences, but do it in a way that respects each others identity and sense of community, Axworthy said.

Axworthy emphasized that the United States cannot solve world issues without help from other nations. He said international crime and terrorism affects everyone and needs to be combated through alliances.

Were now dealing with networks of people of certain governing groups of factions, of warlords, of militias, of drug traders, Axworthy said. They set up a whole new set of risks.

Axworthy said the first job of the government is to protect the people. He said the security of civilians is just as important as the security of the nations.

Sovereignty given to a government is not a divine right its earned, and its earned by the way in which it protects its people, Axworthy said. If it doesnt protect its people, then it begins to abandon its right to declare its sovereignty.

He emphasized the importance of protecting people from landmines that injure innocent bystanders and setting an international agreement to stop their use. He believed if the United States began to call for the prevention of planting landmines, other countries would agree.

Axworthy also talked of the importance of keeping diminishing freshwater evenly distributed throughout the world population. He said not enough discussions have been held about the developing water crisis.

They dont want us to talk about it. Its too dangerous, its too controversial, Axworthy said.

He said discussions and changes will not take place immediately, but will start developing in universities and think-tanks. He urged listeners to think about how their actions affect the world and to persuade their government to help their people, and the people living under corrupt rule.

Never forget that there is evil in this world and that we can do something about it, Axworthy said.

View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue