OTTAWA – The new boss of the U.S. homeland security department rejects suggestions Canada and the United States have a "thickened border" because of excessive security regulation since 9/11.
Still, Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano, speaking to Canadian reporters in a conference call from Washington, signalled an important shift in American rhetoric from the Bush years, going out of her way to say an "important balance" between trade and security at the border needs to be struck.
Napolitano refused to divulge the "preliminary" results of a review she ordered of the Canada-U.S. border's "vulnerabilities." She portrayed it as an information-gathering exercise.
But she sought to allay Canadian fears that her review meant a further "thickening" of the border.