Impact of Aboriginals of Canada on World War 1

Page 1
During the First World War the aboriginals of Canada made sure to defend their country by enlisting and doing all they could. The aboriginals hoped that by entering this war they would claim respect for their people in this new upcoming world and would be granted the same honour and payment the other soldiers accepted. Unfortunately, they received petty thanks and land that had already belonged to them. The unmistakable patriotism of the Aboriginal people was treated with an undeserving indifference that further destroyed the relationship with the Canadian government.
The treaties signed in the 1870’s affected the traditional lifestyle and warrior ethics in a couple   ways; first it developed a strong bond between the Aboriginals and the Queen since she was the one to police the treaties, and since the Queen signed the treaties the Aboriginals saw this as a pact with the crown and not with the Canadian government. As a result of this strong feeling towards the Queen when the aboriginals heard that England and the Queen were threatened by war the Aboriginals were anxious to help them and joined the army. Also in traditional times the Aboriginals saw death in the battlefield to be the greatest honour and preferred to be out fighting than to die of old age or sickness. When the war started in 1914 the government of Canada did not force military on anyone and the volunteered men consisted of a wide variety of ethnic groups. The people of the country thought that it would be short and started to volunteer in great numbers, but as the war progressed, the number of volunteers began to wane and because of this in 1917 the government introduced conscription to men of military age. They tried forcing this on the Aboriginals, but the treaties signed before hand prevented them from making them join. What surprised the non-aboriginal communities and the government was the amount of Aboriginals that volunteered their lives in fighting this war that wasn’t even theirs....