When the Conservative government was first elected to power in January 2006, it did so on five key priorities, none of which related to foreign policy.
While ministers make all the headlines and take all the credit—or blame—in an administration, the scope of their responsibilities is usually so vast that they require a helping hand.
With Canadian troops embroiled in their seventh year of fighting in Afghanistan, and another three yet to go, NDP Foreign Affairs critic Paul Dewar decided in the spring that it was time to assess the war's full cost.
When Canada lifted visa restrictions on the Czech Republic last November, the European country rejoiced in finally gaining uninhibited access for its citizens to visit.
The war is taking resources away from other government work, while budget cuts could leave even bigger holes.
The new senior adviser on water to the president of the UN General Assembly has chalked up her share of adversaries, but promises to keep fighting.