Ron Carlson Arctic Expeditions

Ron Carlson Arctic Expeditions
To see 2012 expedition go to:

Friday, July 15, 2011

Canadian Government Paranoia?

Canadian Arctic Sovereignty?  Camon Canada, really?!

Ran across this from 2008 out of Ottawa.  I guess it all does seem to add up.  If the Canadian government can't find it, nobody can.

The six-week search - the first season in what could be a three-year project headed by Parks Canada’s senior underwater archeologist Robert Grenier and Inuit historian Louie Kamoukak - is set to get under way within days aboard a Canadian Coast Guard icebreaker.

But Baird stressed repeatedly that the search aboard the Canadian Coast Guard icebreaker Sir Wilfrid Laurier is intended to not only locate an “exciting” piece of global maritime heritage, but also to reinforce Canada’s Arctic sovereignty - an issue Prime Minister Stephen Harper flagged earlier this week as a key component of his party’s re-election strategy.

“We think every bit of weight we can put behind our case for sovereignty is important,” Baird said. “Adding history to that equation can only enhance that case.”

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Looks like the ships are just a vehicle for the government to assert their sovereignty.  So sad to use that as the legacy for those famous English sailors. 


  1. If having the government involved is so important, why not try to partner with independent researchers so the government can still take some (hell, even most) of the credit and claim their supreme sovereignty? They would save lots of money if they didn't have to fund these searches and maximize their chances of finding the ship. For example, Canada could supply the archeologists they deem so essential while the researchers can plan the scope and methodology.

    Not that I wouldn't like to see credit go where it's primarily due, but I feel like many of the researchers care more about the project and its contribution to history than the glory. It wouldn't be an ideal setup, but it would at least be something. For once I'm more appreciative of the US's willingness to allow private citizens to be licensed to do things that were traditionally government functions.

    It just all seems to be in such bad faith. If they're already "borrowing" people's ideas, they may as well do some sort of collaboration.

    Have a safe trip home.

  2. Also, it's not like the US government is going to use an American finding the ships as some sort of claim for a stake in the Arctic. Completely ridiculous.

  3. Sovereignty in the Arctic is not a simple matter. The Russians,, with whom we share the north with the USA, know that there is a vast wealth under the ice and if Canada does not reinforce its geographic claim we could be challenged for it (as is happening in the Hann Island dispute with Denmark).

    The search for the Franklin Expedition is of interest to our historians not our politicians. It is rare that we can satisfy both but this is an example of success.

    And guess what, Parks Canada researchers found the remains of the HMS Investigator which was lost searching for Franklin survivors.

  4. Great comments. One small clarification, related to Parks Canada "finding" Investigator: The local old timer bushpilots and commercial pilots up there that I know have known the exact location of the Investigator for decades from overflights. I am told one can easily see it clearly from the air. And the position was always well know as most of those men survived.

    However, Parks Canada can be certainly credited with getting there and obtaining some good ground based documentation. No small feat.