General Walter Natynczyk chief of the Canadian defence staff was busy defending the Canadian submarine fleet. He noted the ability of submarines to protect sovereignty and that it has formidable firepower. It is just not clear who the firepower would be ussed against. The U.S??. THe U.S. does not recognise the northwest passage as international waters. Are we likely to challenge them?
Natynczyk together with Vice-Admiral Paul Maddison the chief of Canada's navy spent about five hours on board a submarine as the vessel conducted diving trials.
The Canadian submarine program has been under fire since 4 used submarines were bought from the UK in 1998 for 750 million dollars. Ever since most of them have been in for repairs!
Most recently last June the HMCS Corner Brook damaged its hull after human error caused it to hit bottom. Dents prevent it from any deep sea diving.
The submarine involved in the training dives the HMCS Victoria also spent three years being refitted and having damage repaired. Even Natynczyk admitted that there had been problems in the program.
Submarines spent much of their time in repair and crews had no vessels on which to practice. Repairs have been quite expensive reportedly costing hundreds of millions of dollars. No doubt the UK were happy enough to ship the lemons over to their former colony! For more see this article.