War at Sea – 1995

War at Sea – How Canada and the USA Nearly Went to War

This is the transcript of the actual radio conversation of a US Naval ship and the Canadians, off the coast of Newfoundland, October, 1995.

Radio conversation released by the Chief of Naval Operations 10-10-95.

CANADIANS:

Please divert your course 15 degrees to the South, to avoid a collision.

AMERICANS:

Recommend you divert your course 15 degrees to the North, to avoid a collision.

CANADIANS:

Negative. You will have to divert your course 15 degrees to the South to avoid a collision.

AMERICANS:

This is the Captain of a US Navy ship. I say again, divert YOUR course.

CANADIANS:

Negative. I say again, You will have to divert your course.

AMERICANS:

THIS IS THE AIRCRAFT CARRIER USS LINCOLN. THE SECOND LARGEST SHIP IN THE UNITED STATES ATLANTIC FLEET, WE ARE ACCOMPANIED BY THREE DESTROYERS, THREE
CRUISERS, AND NUMEROUS SUPPORT VESSELS. I DEMAND THAT YOU CHANGE YOUR COURSE 15 DEGREES NORTH, I SAY AGAIN, THAT’S 15 DEGREES NORTH, OR COUNTERMEASURES WILL BE UNDERTAKEN TO ENSURE THE SAFETY OF THIS SHIP.

CANADIANS:

We are a lighthouse. Your call.

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