Volume #23 - 115.|
QUESTIONS DE DÉFENSE ET SÉCURITÉ
LE RÉSEAU D'ALERTE AVANCÉ
Extrait des conclusions du Cabinet|
le 11 janvier 1956|
The Minister of Trade and Commerce and Minister of Defence Production (Mr. Howe),
The Minister of Agriculture (Mr. Gardiner),
The Minister of National Health and Welfare (Mr. Martin),
The Minister of National Revenue (Dr. McCann),
The Minister of Labour (Mr. Gregg),
The Secretary of State for External Affairs (Mr. Pearson),
The Minister of Justice (Mr. Garson),
The Minister of Public Works (Mr. Winters),
The Minister of Veterans Affairs and Postmaster General (Mr. Lapointe),
The Minister of Finance (Mr. Harris),
The Minister of Mines and Technical Surveys (Mr. Prudham),
The Minister of National Defence (Mr. Campney),
The Leader of the Government in the Senate and Solicitor General ( Senator Macdonald),
The Minister of Citizenship and Immigration (Mr. Pickersgill),
The Minister of Northern Affairs and National Resources (Mr. Lesage),
The Minister of Transport (Mr. Marler),
The Secretary of State (Mr. Pinard).
The Secretary to the Cabinet (Mr. Bryce),
The Assistant Secretary to the Cabinet (Mr. Martin),
The Registrar of the Cabinet (Mr. Halliday).
. . .
D.E.W. LINE; RE-SUPPLY OF WESTERN ARCTIC
10. The Minister of Transport recalled that in the arrangements made with the United States on the establishment of the D.E.W. Line, it had been stipulated that Canadian commercial carriers would be given every possible opportunity to participate in the movement of materials, equipment, etc. during the construction phase. It was understood that the same situation would apply during the operational period.
Through the Permanent Joint Board on Defence, Canada had been requested to consider the maximum development of the Mackenzie River route for the distribution of supplies as far to the east and to the west of the river as practicable. The object was to avoid the necessity of a convoy around Point Barrow - a very dangerous operation performed by the U.S. in 1955 at high cost. As a result, a plan had been worked out and discussed with the U.S. authorities involving the supply by Canadian agencies of all western Canadian Arctic sites and most eastern Alaskan ones. Commencing in 1957, it was proposed that approximately 5 million gallons of petroleum products and dry cargo for 2 Alaskan and 25 Canadian sites be carried by Canadian commercial operators, and that the barge movement down the Mackenzie River carried out by the Northern Transportation Company would be extended. In addition, it was proposed that a number of stations would be serviced by five U.S.-owned vessels to be entrusted to a Canadian commercial company.
U.S. officials concerned had subsequently suggested that the Canadian government assume logistic responsibility for re-supplying these D.E.W. sites because it would be illegal for the U.S. government to transfer government-owned vessels to a foreign private company. Since this type of ship could only be obtained in the U.S., the alternative would be to have the transportation undertaken by the U.S. government, but this would make that government the major provider of sea transportation in the Canadian western Arctic. In the circumstances, it had been concluded that Canada should assume the responsibility for this sea supply operation.
The Minister recommended at the suggestion of the Advisory Committee on Northern Development, that Canada undertake the development of the western Arctic sea supply to the D.E.W. Line bases from Barter Island eastward by way of the Mackenzie River route, on a reimbursable basis, with five special ships required being provided from U.S. sources. It was also proposed that the Northern Transportation Company be designated the agency responsible for the work.
An explanatory memorandum had been circulated.
( Minister's memorandum, Jan. 10, 1956 - Cab. Doc. 5-56?)
11. During the discussion the following points emerged:
(a) The proposal was a sensible one in that Canadian organizations and personnel would be working on Canadian territory, and, at the same time, relieving the U.S. of a task which it did not wish to undertake. It would be a better arrangement still from some points of view if Canada were to bear the cost of the operation.
(b) It was unfortunate that more and more U.S. forces were being stationed at bases on Canadian soil. However, there was no alternative to this trend unless Canada undertook the responsibility for manning and operating all joint defence projects on Canadian territory. From this point of view the proposal was about as good as could be expected.
(c) Relations between some private transportation companies on the Mackenzie River and the Northern Transportation Company could be improved. It was thought by some that the latter maintained high rates in an effort to keep these private firms in business. It would be helpful if they could have a share of the work of re-supplying the D.E.W. Line stations.
12. The Cabinet approved the recommendation of the Minister of Transport and agreed,
(a) that the United States be informed that Canada would be prepared to assume responsibility for development and organization of western Arctic sea supply to the D.E.W. Line from Barter Island eastward by way of the Mackenzie River route on the understanding,
(i) that certain necessary vessels for the lateral movement suitable converted be provided from U.S. sources;
(ii) that Canada would be re-imbursed by the United States for the costs incurred in the supply of the D.E.W. Line stations;
(iii) that the supply of the D.E.W. Line stations would be integrated, on a basis to be agreed, with the supply of settlements and general civil carriage along the Canadian portion of the coast; and,
(b) that the Northern Transportation Company be designated as the Canadian agency for planning and organization of the undertaking on the understanding that, in the operation of the larger vessels required for the lateral movement from the mouth of the Mackenzie River, the greatest practicable use would be made of Canadian commercial carriers with experience in the Arctic.
. . .