TORONTO — He called his relationship with Prime Minister Justin Trudeau of Canada “testy.” But President Trump put that down to heated trade negotiations only.
Now that the newly named deal was settled, things between the two men — and by extension, two countries — were supposedly rosy again.
“We’ve always had actually a very good relationship,” Mr. Trump told reporters gathered in the Rose Garden on Monday.
If you swept a microphone across the length of Canada at that moment, the sound recorded would have been of eyeballs rolling. Millions of them.
Canadians are mostly relieved that Nafta 2.0, now called the U.S.M.C.A., was signed and that Mr. Trump’s threats of economic ruination for their country are over. But if he thinks the argument with his neighbor is all patched up, then he is terribly wrong.
“The president insulted our country, our prime minister and even our chief negotiator,” said Frank McKenna, a former premier of New Brunswick and a former Canadian ambassador to the United States.
“He not only used rude language, he threatened our economic welfare,” Mr. McKenna said. “And he seemed to do it with great glee. People won’t forget that. I think that’s now deep in our psyche — the way we were treated by this president.”
The months of negotiations over the North American Free Trade Agreement delivered increasing shocks to Canadians, who have long thought of themselves as the beloved — if somewhat ignored — little sibling of their superpower neighbor.
Sure, many Americans couldn’t place Canada’s capital, Ottawa, on the map or name the country’s prime minister — a hit television routine was predicated on this benign ignorance — but that was largely accepted as proof of a relationship so strong that it could be taken for granted.
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Despite being a country of just 36 million, Canada is the biggest source of international travelers to the United States, its closest military ally and the biggest importer of American goods.
Many Canadians, who touted their relationship with Americans as the most successful partnership in the world, feel that the special bond is gone — or at least frayed.
“We think we understand the United States, or thought we did,” said Janice Stein, the founding director of the University of Toronto’s Munk School of Global Affairs. “That relationship is gone.”
Bill Anderson, the director of the University of Windsor’s Cross-Border Institute, a research organization across the river from Detroit, said there was still hope that relations could be repaired eventually.
“There’s a kind of disappointment, but most people expect things to get better,” he said. “Down here on the border, the bond is more personal than political.”
The erosion began in May, when Mr. Trump announced that he was expanding tariffs on steel and aluminum to include Canada, hurdling the trade agreement by claiming that imported metals threatened national security by degrading America’s industrial base. Canada is the biggest exporter of steel and aluminum to the United States.
“It’s impossible to explain to Americans how insulted Canadians were by that,” Ms. Stein said. “How, by any stretch of the imagination, could we be a security threat to the U.S.?”
At the end of this summer’s two-day Group of 7 summit meeting in Charlevoix, Quebec, with Mr. Trudeau as host, Mr. Trump erupted in a fury that many Canadians found not just shocking, but inexplicable.
After Mr. Trudeau said Canada would not be bullied on trade, Mr. Trump dropped tweets like bombs from Air Force One, on his way to meet North Korea’s leader. He called Mr. Trudeau “very dishonest and weak” and accused him of “making false statements.”
The next day, the president’s top trade and economic advisers piled on. Peter Navarro said there was “a special place in hell” for Mr. Trudeau, and Larry Kudlow said he “stabbed us in the back.” Mr. Navarro later apologized.
Canadian historians say there is a rich history of frosty relations between American presidents and Canadian prime ministers.
The most famous display of anger, said Robert Bothwell, a professor of Canadian history at the University of Toronto, was after Canada’s Lester B. Pearson, a Liberal and Nobel Peace Prize laureate, called for a suspension of the bombing in Vietnam by the United States, in a speech in Philadelphia. The next day, he visited President Lyndon B. Johnson at Camp David.
Mr. Johnson was so enraged that he reportedly lifted Mr. Pearson by his lapels, while bellowing, “You pissed on my rug.”
But that was not made public at the time. And it certainly wasn’t trumpeted by the president himself.
“There’s been disagreement, yes, but never public abuse like this,” Professor Bothwell said. “Even Woodrow Wilson would have thought it was just ungentlemanly. There really is no precedent.”
Throughout the negotiations, Mr. Trump put Canadian dairy farmers in the cross hairs of his Twitter assaults. He scoffed at Canada’s military commitment to American wars, at one point retorting “Didn’t you guys burn down the White House?”
(No Canadians did not. The War of 1812 was in fact between the United States and Britain, as Canada was still more than 50 years away from becoming a country.)
Then, in August, he announced a deal with Mexico on Nafta and suggested that Canada might no longer be included. He threatened to hit Canada’s auto exports with a hefty 25 percent tariff if it did not “negotiate fairly.”
In the days before signing the deal, Mr. Trump announced that he had purposely snubbed Mr. Trudeau by refusing to meet with him at the United Nations and declared that he didn’t like Canada’s trade representative — presumably Foreign Minister Chrystia Freeland — “very much.” (Mr. Trudeau’s office said no request for a meeting was ever made.)
“That type of language was extremely offensive,” Professor Anderson said. “That’s going to stick with people.”
The latest Pew Research poll reflects just that.
Only 39 percent of Canadians polled said they had a favorable view of the United States — the lowest number since Pew began polling Canadians in 2002.
For many Canadians, the worst part was seeing that Mr. Trump’s sentiments had the support of many Americans. Ms. Stein noted the latest Gallup poll, which showed Mr. Trump’s job approval rating at 42 percent.
“It’s really a deep shock for Canadians,” she said. “We need now to use the time the agreement provides us — 16 years — to adjust, to diversify our trade beyond the United States.”
“We have to invest more effort and resources in the rest of the G7 — independent of what the United States says — in Germany and France and Japan,” Ms. Stein continued. “It would be highly irresponsible not to after this.”
In his own news conference after the new deal was announced, Mr. Trudeau alluded to the same idea.
He pointed out that through their many agreements, Canadians now trade with 1.5 billion consumers around the world. “From Singapore to Kiev, from the northern most point of the Americas to the southern most,” he said, “we are part of a global free trade network governed by rules, that benefits consumers and workers alike.”
Pressed about his relationship with the president, Mr. Trudeau was diplomatic. He said more, by saying little.
“The relationship between the U.S. and Canadians is much deeper than just the relationship between two individuals who happen to be prime minister and president,” Mr. Trudeau said.