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Canada, The United States And The Northwest Passage

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Chapter Summary

Canada has few outstanding Arctic land disputes, but its waters are more problematic and are the focus of this chapter. The Northwest Passage is both the fabled and the extant Arctic sea route that eliminates over 4500 nautical miles by avoiding the Panama Canal. The claim to 'historic waters' is based on Inuit presence. Certainly, throughout the ages, the Native claims and use of their ancient lands have never wavered. The earliest complete transit of the Northwest Passage took place in 1906 by Roald Amundsen of Norway. The nuclear submarine era of the Northwest Passage transits began with the new decade: USS Seadragon in 1960 and USS Skate in 1962. For the United States, it must abandon the fear of setting a precedent that could hinder the United States' position in other parts of the world.

Keywords: Canada; Northwest Passage; Panama Canal; United States



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