1. Canadian nukes? 2. US reaction?
This is a two part question.
First, should Canada arm itself with nuclear weapons?
Canada is an exceptionally oil rich nation. The USA needs oil, which presently makes for good trade, but should a shortage become critical and extended, there may be extreme friction (groan). The USA has a pattern of excessively involving itself in the affairs of other nations over economic interests, and has gone so far as to overthrow elected governments. In light of this, it is reasonable for Canada to develop its military to the point that it can defend against potential American aggression over oil.
The population of the USA is an order of magnitude greater than that of Canada, and the American military dwarfs Canada’s. It is impossible for Canada to develop a conventional military that can stand up to the USA. Any military deterrence (as opposed to diplomatic or economic deterrence – or the tried and true Canadian fifth column approach of impregnating as many Americans as possible) would have to involve nukes in a MAD deterrence.
Canada has the ability to develop nukes and delivery systems, and allies such as the USA, France and the UK have nukes.
Should we arm ourselves with nuclear weapons?
Second, what would the American reaction be should we arm ourselves with nukes?
The USA has/has wanted to bring its nukes into Canada, and has wanted Canada to share in the defence of the USA by permitting military access to Canada and by contributing to American military costs, but this has always been in the context of Canada supporting the USA without Canada developing its own nukes (e.g. American nukes in Canada on Canadian delivery systems http://www.user.dccnet.com/welcomewoods/Nuclear_Free_Georgia_Strait/clearwater.html ).
Although Canadian nukes would support continental defence, Canadian nukes would also be a direct threat to the USA should Canadian and American interests diverge over the use of Canadian oil to the point of the USA attempting to liberate Canada.
What would be the American reaction if Canada were to develop nuclear weapons?