chapter  7
16 Pages

The ‘Federal Solution’ in its Application to Europe, Asia, and Africa

In the preface to his study Federal Government, which is dated July 1945, Professor K.C.Wheare referred to the fact that much of what he had written might soon be out of date because ‘under the impact of war federal government was undergoing such strenuous testing, and such radical adaptation’.2 What he failed to suggest was that in the post-war years the federal idea itself would enjoy a widespread popularity such as it had never known before.3 While it is true that the war did bring about important changes in the practice of federalism in the four classic federations to which Professor Wheare’s definition of federal government substantially though not entirely restricted his attention, and while it is significant that these changes were all in the same direction, namely, in favour of the central authority at the expense of the separate States, Provinces, or Cantons, all the three belligerent federations, the United States, Canada, Australia, and neutral Switzerland emerged from the war with political systems of the same fundamental kind as they had enjoyed (or tolerated) before. But in the subsequent eight years a number of new governments have arisen which at least claim the designation federal; and other federal structures are in process of construction.