Portal:Canada

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Introduction


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Canada /ˈkænədə/ is a North American country consisting of ten provinces and three territories. Located in the northern part of the continent, it extends from the Atlantic Ocean in the east to the Pacific Ocean in the west and northward into the Arctic Ocean. It is the world's second largest country by total area. Canada's common border with the United States to the south and northwest is the longest in the world.

The land that is now Canada was inhabited for millennia by various groups of Aboriginal peoples. Beginning in the late 15th century, British and French expeditions explored, and later settled, along the Atlantic coast. France ceded nearly all of its colonies in North America in 1763 after the Seven Years' War. In 1867, with the union of three British North American colonies through Confederation, Canada was formed as a federal dominion of four provinces. This began an accretion of provinces and territories and a process of increasing autonomy from the United Kingdom. This widening autonomy was highlighted by the Statute of Westminster of 1931 and culminated in the Canada Act of 1982, which severed the vestiges of legal dependence on the British parliament.

Canada is a federation that is governed as a parliamentary democracy and a constitutional monarchy with Queen Elizabeth II as its head of state. It is a bilingual nation with both English and French as official languages at the federal level. One of the world's highly developed countries, Canada has a diversified economy that is reliant upon its abundant natural resources and upon trade—particularly with the United States, with which Canada has had a long and complex relationship. It is a member of the G8, G-20, NATO, OECD, WTO, Commonwealth, Francophonie, OAS, APEC, and UN.

Coat of Arms of Canada (1957).jpg More about...Canada, its history and inhabitants

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Canadian soldiers advancing behind a tank at the Battle of Vimy Ridge, one of Canada's greatest military victories.
The military history of Canada comprises hundreds of years of armed actions in the territory encompassing modern Canada, and the role of the Canadian military in conflicts and peacekeeping worldwide. For thousands of years, the area that would become Canada was the site of sporadic intertribal wars among First Nations peoples. Beginning in the 16th century, the arrival of Europeans led to conflicts with Aboriginal peoples and among the invading Europeans in the New World. Starting in the 17th century, the region was the site of conflicts between the French and the British for more than a century, as each allied with various First Nation groups. In 1763, the British emerged victorious and the French civilians, whom the British hoped to assimilate, were declared "British Subjects". New challenges soon arose when the northern colonies chose not to join the American Revolution and remained loyal to the British crown. The victorious Americans looked to extend their republic and launched invasions in 1775 and in 1812. On both occasions, the Americans were rebuffed by British and local forces; however, this threat would remain well into the 19th century and partially facilitated Canadian Confederation in 1867.

After Confederation, and amid much controversy, a full-fledged Canadian military was created. Canada, however, remained a British colony, and Canadian forces joined their British counterparts in the Second Boer War, and the First World War. While independence followed the Statute of Westminster, Canada's links to Britain remained strong, and the British once again enjoyed Canadian support in the Second World War. Since the Second World War, however, Canada has been committed to multilateralism and has gone to war only within large multinational coalitions such as in the Korean War, the Gulf War, the Kosovo War, and the 2001 invasion of Afghanistan. Canada has also played an important role in UN peacekeeping operations worldwide and has cumulatively committed more troops than any other country. As of 2006, Canada had the second-highest peacekeeping fatality in the world, behind India.

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k-os in November 2004
k-os (born Kevin Brereton on February 20, 1972) is a Canadian rapper, singer, songwriter and record producer of Trinidadian descent. His given name may also be cited as Kheaven, a spelling he later adopted.

The alias "k-os" is pronounced "chaos" and is an acronym for "Knowledge of Self," although in a later interview he also said that it used to stand for "Kheaven's Original Sound." His music incorporates a wide variety of music genres including but not limited to rap, funk, rock, and reggae. The lyrics frequently focus on promoting a "positive message" while at times expressing criticism of mainstream hip hop culture's obsession with money, fame and glorification of violence.< A musician as well as a producer, k-os has written and produced nearly every part of all three of his albums. k-os usually performs with a live band, something that is uncommon in the hip hop genre. He sometimes plays guitar and keyboard both during live performances and in the studio.

k-os received his first musical exposure with the single "Musical Essence", released in 1993. After the release of his second single "Rise Like The Sun" in 1996 he withdrew from the industry because he was dissatisfied with his musical style. He reappeared briefly in 1999 and released his debut album Exit in 2002. The album received positive reviews but sold relatively few copies. He released his second album Joyful Rebellion in 2004, which received platinum status in Canada. Joyful Rebellion received positive reviews, but at times was criticized for speaking extensively on the state of hip hop. k-os's third album, Atlantis: Hymns for Disco, was released in 2006.

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Beaver


The importance of the North American Beaver in the development of Canada through the fur trade led to its designation as the national animal. The beaver is also the symbol of many units and organizations within the Canadian Forces, such as on the cap badges of the Royal 22e Régiment and the Canadian Military Engineers...

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