The Korean War, 1950-1953, conjured repeated comparisions between Washington's and Ottawa's contribution to the war effort. In addition to American complaints that Canadians were not doing enough, Canadian frustrations about the lack of consultations and disagreements over General MacArthur's aggressive decisions cooled both countries' relationship. With the end of the war, however, these strains were not to form an enduring hinderance. The Suez crisis in late 1956 served again as a cause for tensions between Canadians and their southern neighbor. While the events made Britain's decline as an international Great Power obvious, Canadians saw themselves confronted with the unmodified influence of the United States. Had the Ottawa-London-Washington triangle served as a power moderating construct, Canadians now fully realized that they faced American pressure without modulation. James Eayrs, a contemporary political scientist, reviewed the Suez crisis with respect to Canada-U.S. relations commenting that "the shock of this recognition was apparent in the hostility towards American policies and American statesmen [â€¦]. It persisted, in form of a subdued but sullen resentment, for some months to come" (Eayrs, 101; Chapnick, 21, 24).
The most consistent irritant between Ottawa and Washington formed the political tribunals of McCarthyism. Far into the 1950s, Canadians were alienated by the Senate subcommittees' witch hunts and accusations. This situation was even more exacerbated when Canadian officials became the subject of inquiries. Animosities peaked in 1957, when the Canadian Ambassador to Egypt, Herbert Norman, committed suicide. For charges of being a communist and Soviet spy, Norman had been under investigation by the U.S. subcommittees time and again throughout the 1950s. Lester Pearson, who enjoyed a close relationship with him, protected Norman, sending him first to New Zealand and later to Egypt to be Canada's ambassador. Norman's death, which came to be interpreted in connection with the continuing investigations, fueled anti-American sentiments and hardened relations between Ottawa and Washington (Eayrs, 98ff).