During and after the Second World War, Canadians became increasingly aware that although they should not aspire to the privileges and responsibilities of a great power, they and other countries of comparable consequence could not settle for the role of small powers. In the various conferences at which the United Nations was designed, Canada, Australia and medium-sized countries of Europe and Latin America curbed the intentions of the greater powers to dominate all aspects of the UN. In the early postwar years there was a need for middle powers, less directly involved in world economics and politics, to fulfill intermediary UN roles, particularly in conflicts arising from the disengagement of colonial powers in the Middle East, South Asia and Africa. The Scandinavian countries, Canada, Brazil, Yugoslavia and others proved useful in seeking compromises and formulas for agreement, as well as in staffing the peacekeeping operations required when truces were established. The term "middle" thereby developed a mediatory connotation as well. As the two superpowers emerged in a special classification, there is a tendency now to refer to Britain, France, Germany and Japan as middle powers.