Where is the body of John Franklin? Inuit his­to­rian thinks he knows

Northern News (Kirkland Lake) - - NATIONAL NEWS - BOB WEBER

GJOA HAVEN , Nu­navut — The man who guided searchers to the wreck of John Franklin’s flag­ship may have one more sur­prise left up his parka sleeve.

“I be­lieve that Franklin is in a vault on King Wil­liam Is­land,” says Louie Kamookak, an Inuit his­to­rian who has spent 30 years cor­re­lat­ing sto­ries col­lected from el­ders with Euro­pean log­books and jour­nals.

The mys­tery that sur­rounds the Franklin Ex­pe­di­tion is one of the great le­gends of Arc­tic ex­plo­ration. The ships Ere­bus and Ter­ror set out from Eng­land in 1845 with to slow down and con­sult with po­lice forces, health agen­cies and pro­vin­cial gov­ern­ments be­fore in­tro­duc­ing leg­is­la­tion.

“Be­fore you open the pool you bet­ter check the chlo­rine lev­els and know what’s go­ing on. And we’re just open­ing the pools be­cause it’s Canada Day,” Pat­ter­son said.

“Spit­balling in the dark seems to be the method be­ing used to stick to that date.”

On­tario be­came the first prov­ince to make pub­lic its plans for le­gal­ized cannabis last week, un­veil­ing a reg­u­la­tory regime that re­stricts sales to its own liquor board op­er­ated stores.

Rep­re­sen­ta­tives from sev­eral po­lice forces warned the House of Com­mons health com­mit­tee ear­lier this week that there was zero 129 men to search for the North­west Pas­sage, but they never re­turned.

Lit­tle by lit­tle, the Franklin story is com­ing to­gether.

Ar­ti­facts and graves found through­out the 19th and 20th cen­turies were joined by sev­eral more bod­ies dis­cov­ered in the 1980s. The ships were found in 2014 and 2016.

But where is the grave of John Franklin?

Kamookak re­lates two sto­ries passed down through gen­er­a­tions that may of­fer tan­ta­liz­ing clues.

“One group of Inuit said they saw a burial of a great chief un­der the ground, un­der stone.”

This was re­mark­able for the hun­ters, chance po­lice would be ready in time to en­force new laws for le­gal­ized pot. Pub­lic Safety Min­is­ter Ralph Goodale re­sponded by de­scrib­ing the gov­ern­ment’s timetable as rea­son­able.

Youth health ex­perts are urg­ing the fed­eral gov­ern­ment to de­velop ex­ten­sive pre­ven­tion and pub­lice­d­u­ca­tion cam­paigns fo­cus­ing on the harm­ful ef­fect of mar­i­juana on ado­les­cent brains, warn­ing that stronger reg­u­la­tions alone will be in­ef­fec­tive in de­ter­ring kids from smok­ing pot.

Other top­ics up for dis­cus­sion at the two-day meet­ing are how the jus­tice sys­tem deals with HIV non-dis­clo­sure and the fall­out from the Supreme Court of Canada’s de­ci­sion that puts a time limit on how long it takes to pros­e­cute a crim­i­nal charges. as Inuit tra­di­tion­ally buried their dead on the sur­face, wrapped in caribou skins and un­der a cairn. They in­ves­ti­gated the site, ex­pect­ing to find some­thing sim­i­lar. All they found was a flat stone.

“They said he was a great shaman who turned to stone,” says Kamookak.

In an­other ac­count, a group of trav­el­ling Inuit came across a large wooden struc­ture.

“They man­aged to get a cross piece they took for a sled. The man who was telling the story said there was a flat stone and he could tell the stone was hol­low.”

Given that other ex­pe­di­tion graves have been found on land, Kamookak

WASH­ING­TON — The U.S. is seek­ing to in­sert a so-called sun­set clause into a new NAFTA deal, a con­tro­ver­sial pro­posal that would au­to­mat­i­cally ter­mi­nate the agree­ment af­ter five years un­less all three mem­ber coun­tries agree to ex­tend it.

That idea has been qui­etly floated for months by U.S. of­fi­cials who fi­nally made it pub­lic Thurs­day. It prompted swift re­sis­tance. Cana­dian and Mex­i­can of­fi­cials brushed it off al­most as soon as it was pub­licly re­vealed, call­ing it a bad idea that would cre­ate eco­nomic in­sta­bil­ity and scare busi­nesses away from long-term in­vest­ments.

The pri­or­ity was an­nounced by U.S. Pres­i­dent Don­ald Trump’s com­merce sec­re­tary, Wil­bur Ross. He con­firmed the U.S. will seek some au­to­matic-ter­mi­na­tion clause to en­sure the agree­ment can be con­stantly re-eval­u­ated and im­proved.

“The five-year thing is a real thing that would force a sys­tem­atic re­ex­am­i­na­tion,” Ross told a fo­rum or­ga­nized by the web­site Politico.

“You’d have a fo­rum for try­ing to fix things.”

Ross said U.S. trade czar Robert Lighthizer, who is lead­ing the NAFTA talks for his coun­try, agrees with him that it’s a good idea. But Ross con­ceded it’s un­clear the other NAFTA coun­tries will ever ac­cept it.

He re­it­er­ated his goal of reach­ing a deal by the end of the year. Af­ter­wards, he said, it will be­come harder to nail down a deal in 2018 as Mex­ico and the U.S. have na­tional elec­tions, the U.S. fast-track law is up for re­newal and Canada has pro­vin­cial elec­tions. If there’s no deal, he said the pres­i­dent is se­ri­ous that he might ter­mi­nate NAFTA.

“It’s a very real thing,” Ross said of the pres­i­dent’s threat.

“But it is not the pre­ferred op­tion.” be­lieves Franklin’s is there too.

“I don’t think they would have an ocean burial for him.”

If he’s right, Franklin is prob­a­bly still ly­ing be­neath the tun­dra

The idea of an au­to­matic sun­set ap­pears to be a non-starter.

Shortly af­ter Ross left the stage, the U.S. am­bas­sadors of Canada and Mex­ico ap­peared for a panel dis­cus­sion. Both strongly re­jected the idea, and said the U.S. busi­ness com­mu­nity would never ac­cept it ei­ther.

Canada’s David MacNaughton told re­porters he has been hear­ing this idea for months in closed-door chats. He said he has never un­der­stood the logic be­hind it, since NAFTA al­ready has a clause al­low­ing any coun­try to with­draw if it re­ally wants to.

But an au­to­matic-sun­set clause is de­signed for some­thing you in­tend to end, like a law de­signed to ex­pire, MacNaughton said. That’s the op­po­site of a trade agree­ment — whose in­her­ent goal, he said, is to project long-term pre­dictabil­ity.

“One of rea­sons you do (a trade agree­ment) is to cre­ate an en­vi­ron­ment within which busi­ness can make in­vest­ments. (In) many of those in­vest­ments peo­ple will look to 20 years’, 25 years’ pay­back,” MacNaughton said. “If you have to do it ev­ery five years, the pric­ing of po­lit­i­cal risk is very high.”

He il­lus­trated his point with a more home­spun metaphor: “If ev­ery mar­riage had a five-year sun­set clause on it, I think our di­vorce rate would be a heck of a lot higher than it is.” Mex­ico’s am­bas­sador agreed. “Ourview­sex­actly,”saidGeron­imo Gu­tier­rez. “It would prob­a­bly have very detri­men­tal con­se­quences for the busi­ness com­mu­nity of the United States, Mex­ico and Canada... Cer­tainty is the key word here.” JA­SON FRAN­SON/THE CANA­DIAN PRESS on King Wil­liam Is­land’s rocky and windswept northeast coast.

If he’s wrong, chalk up one more mys­tery in a tale that’s been gen­er­at­ing ques­tions for 170 years.

Ryan Har­ris, Parks Canada, lead un­der­wa­ter arche­ol­o­gist for the Ere­bus and Ter­ror points out on a map the area where the sunken ships the Ere­bus and the Ter­ror are near Gjoa Haven Nu­navut, on Fri­day Septem­ber 1.

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