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A New Ceremonial Practice?

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Oldgateboatdriver

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I just went past the harbour here in Montreal this morning and two MCDV's were alongside: SUMMERSIDE and I could not read the other one's name or hull number as she was the inboard ship.

On their starboard outer yardarm, they were both flying a Quebec provincial flag, the "Fleur-de-lys".

Now this type of practice (flying the "local" flag of a country you visit) is called a Courtesy flag, and is in use by  the US Navy, for one. In my days in the Canadian Navy however, we did not do this - for anyone. An old chief of signal once told me (when asked) that in "British tradition" navies such flying by a warship signals a surrender to the nation whose flag you fly (was he pulling my leg with an urban legend - I don't know).

My questions are:

1) Have we changed our practices to now allow the flying of Courtesy flags (or were the two captains just being cute)?

and,
2) Internally in Canada, do we then do this in every province, or just in Quebec to satisfy Prime Minister Harper's recognition of Quebec as a Nation?
 
We used to do that for every foreign port (although it was usually the city flag, not the provincial flag) if it was a "show the flag" tour.  We didn't do it if, say we were going to Seattle for a weekend on a MARS 4 trip.

Maybe they didn't have the Montreal flag?  Surely someone must have a Habs jersey they could just hoist  >:D
 
Oldgateboatdriver said:
................ or just in Quebec to satisfy Prime Minister Harper's recognition of Quebec as a Nation?

Did I miss something?
 
Oldgateboatdriver said:
just in Quebec to satisfy Prime Minister Harper's recognition of Québécois as a nation within a unified Canada.

Fixed that.
 
Dimsum said:
We used to do that for every foreign port (although it was usually the city flag, not the provincial flag) if it was a "show the flag" tour.  We didn't do it if, say we were going to Seattle for a weekend on a MARS 4 trip.

We flew city flags for Canadian port visits (if there was one available) and the U.S. Flag for any American ports.
 
Hmmm.  I find this very interesting.  CF (and federal government as far as I know) policy is that we do not fly/display ANY provincial flag on a CF establishment or in any of HMC Ships unless we fly/display ALL of them.

I suspect that this was a case of local initiative that went awry because someone couldn't be bothered to look it up.
 
yoman said:
Fixed that.
Good catch - here's the PM's speech from 22 Nov 06 for Hansard geeks:
Right Hon. Stephen Harper (Prime Minister, CPC):  Mr. Speaker, tomorrow the Bloc Québécois will present the House with an unusual request that we here at the federal Parliament define the Québécois nation. As a consequence, with the support of the government and with the support of our party, I will be putting on the notice paper later today the following motion:

[Translation]

    That this House recognize that the Québécois form a nation within a united Canada.

    Mr. Speaker, the real intent behind the motion by the leader of the Bloc and the sovereignist camp is perfectly clear. It is to recognize not what the Québécois are, but what the sovereignists would like them to be.

    To the Bloc, the issue is not that Quebec is a nation—the National Assembly has already spoken on that subject; the issue is separation. To them, “nation” means “separation”. We saw its true intent on October 27, when it said that the NDP had recognized for decades that Quebec was a nation, but that every time there was a referendum its actions contradicted the positions it had taken.

    In other words, if you recognize that the Québécois form a nation, you have to vote yes in a referendum on separation. The attempt by the leader of the Bloc to persuade Quebeckers of good faith to support separation despite themselves brings to mind what his mentor, Jacques Parizeau, said about lobster traps. Quebeckers are not taken in by these clumsy tactics.

    Former PQ premier, Bernard Landry, asked this question:

— once that recognition is achieved, you must know, in all honesty, that you will then be faced with the question: why should the nation of Quebec be satisfied with the status of province of another nation and forego equality with yours and every other nation?

    Mr. Speaker, the answer is clear. Quebeckers have always played a historic role in Canada’s progress, through their public spirit, courage and vision, by building a confident, autonomous and proud Quebec showing its solidarity within a strong, united, independent and free Canada.

    When Champlain landed in Quebec, he did not say that this would not work, it was too far away, it was too cold, or it was too difficult. No. Champlain and his companions worked hard because they believed in what they were doing, because they wanted to preserve their values, because they wanted to build a lasting and secure country. That is exactly what happened nearly 400 years ago, when Canada, as a country, was founded.

    Quebeckers know who they are. They know that they have participated in the founding of Canada and in its development and its greatness. They know that they have preserved their language and their unique culture, and that they have advanced their values and their interests within Canada. The real question is simple: do the Québécois form a nation within a united Canada? The answer is yes. Do the Québécois form a nation independent of Canada? The answer is no, and it will always be no.

    Mr. Speaker, throughout their history, Quebeckers have always known who the prophets of doom are and who the true guides of their destiny are.
 
Pusser said:
Hmmm.  I find this very interesting.  CF (and federal government as far as I know) policy is that we do not fly/display ANY provincial flag on a CF establishment or in any of HMC Ships unless we fly/display ALL of them.

I suspect that this was a case of local initiative that went awry because someone couldn't be bothered to look it up.


It would seem that the Government of Canada's official site at Canadian Heritage states only a PRECEDENCE of flags, provincial or otherwise, but not a exigency that all provincial flags MUST be flown:

  • The National Flag of Canada
  • The flags of other sovereign nations in alphabetical order (if applicable)
  • The flags of the provinces of Canada (in the order in which they joined Confederation)
  • The flags of the territories of Canada (in the order in which they joined Confederation)
  • The flags of municipalities/cities
  • Banners of organizations
  • Historical Flags

As a reminder to those who refer to the Canadian Heritage website, the provincial precedence per date of joining Confederation when ALL provincial flags are flown is provided thusly (serving to clarify precedence of provinces with the same date of joining confederation, i.e. ON, QC, NS and NB in 1867 and AB and SK in 1905):

  • Ontario (1867)
  • Quebec (1867)
  • Nova Scotia (1867)
  • New Brunswick (1867)
  • Manitoba (1870)
  • British Columbia (1871)
  • Prince Edward Island (1873)
  • Saskatchewan (1905)
  • Alberta (1905)
  • Newfoundland (1949)
  • Northwest Territories (1870)
  • Yukon (1898)
  • Nunavut (1999)

Perhaps we could benefit further with a reference that provides greater detail than the Canadian Heritage site, regarding the use of flags other than the Nation's flag on HMC Ships?


Regards
G2G
 
Try the Manual of Ceremony for HMC Ships, Submarines, and Naval Reserve Decisions. This in conjunction with the Heritage Structure for the CF are the sole authority for the display of flags.
 
First of all, I am happy to see that everyone clued in on my reference to our Prime Minister.

Second of all: I would be glad to look it up in the Ceremonial Manual, but it just so happens that I am retired and don't have access to one.

I'd be glad for anyone with access to let me know if the rules have changed thus.
 
Good2Golf said:
It would seem that the Government of Canada's official site at Canadian Heritage states only a PRECEDENCE of flags, provincial or otherwise, but not a exigency that all provincial flags MUST be flown:

Perhaps we could benefit further with a reference that provides greater detail than the Canadian Heritage site, regarding the use of flags other than the Nation's flag on HMC Ships?


Regards
G2G

A-AD-200-000/AG-000 (The Honours, Flags and Heritage Structure of the Canadian Forces), Chapt 4, Sect 8 states:

15. Provincial flags shall only be flown on
Department of National Defence (DND) property as a
complete set of all provincial flags, and only for display
purposes such as around a parade square.

16. Municipal flags are not flown on DND property.
 
Pusser said:
A-AD-200-000/AG-000 (The Honours, Flags and Heritage Structure of the Canadian Forces), Chapt 4, Sect 8 states:

15. Provincial flags shall only be flown on
Department of National Defence (DND) property as a
complete set of all provincial flags, and only for display
purposes such as around a parade square.

16. Municipal flags are not flown on DND property.

Does "property" now refer to Her Majesty's Ships, Canadian or otherwise?  Seems a little odd to me.
 
Taken from the Manual of Ceremony for HMC Ships/Submarines

Provincial and Municipal Flags
Reference:
1.    A-AD-200-000/AG-000 (Chap. 4 Sec. 8;  page 4-8-6,  paragraphs 9 - 10)
8.    Though provincial flags may be used as miniature distinguishing flags by premiers and ministers representing the provincial government, there are no provincial personal flags for use by premiers or ministers in HMC Ships.  Only the flag of the provincial lieutenant-governor is flown in HMC Ships, and then only in accordance with Chapter 2, section 3, paragraph 9 of this manual.
9.    Provincial flags shall only be flown ashore as a complete set of all provincial flags, and only for display purposes such as around a parade square.

10.    Municipal flags are not flown in HMC Ships nor at shore establishments.

 
I think we must distinguish between an HMCS WHICHEVER stood up as a unit of the Canadian Forces and which comprises both the commissioned ship and the crew and all other attendants pieces of equipment and the ship itself, which is property, like any base, building, MBT, airplane, etc. of the armed forces.. So yes, he steel thing that is a ship is property of DND (which is why it can be disposed of as excess crown's assets after we are done with it), while HMCS WHICHEVER is a unit of the RCN
 
Thank you Dolphin_Hunter. You answered my question, and it is in line with the overall CF policy as stated by Pusser.
 
It was definitely not unusual to fly courtesy flags on foreign port visits to the US (national flags though obviously).

In terms of provincial flags, I personally haven't seen this done before.  However, from the pictures I've seen taken by friends on the great lakes tour, it appears that this practice has not been limited to Quebec but was also done for Ontario as well.
 
Snakedoc said:
It was definitely not unusual to fly courtesy flags on foreign port visits to the US (national flags though obviously).

I agree that we've done it before in the US only, because if you don't, down there, you would be amazed at the number of people walking up to you highly frustrated that you are so "uncouth, insulting to the American people and all around ***hole" for not flying it and letting you know in no uncertain terms. We just do it to avoid any unpleasantness.

Even if you try to explain to them that it is not part of your naval traditions or even permitted by your regulations, it is irrelevant to them: As American, they have a god given right to insist everybody follow their traditions and regulations, which are the only acceptable ones that everyone in the world obviously should strive to emulate /ANTI-AMERICAN RANT OFF.
 
I have been flying national, provincial and municipal flags my entire career.  I am a deployed CO.  I know both of the COs commanding the Ships currently berthed in Montreal.  There was a push from the Fleet Chief before ships sailed this summer to ensure we had national, provincial, state and municipal flags for all of the port visits for all of the ships making stops this summer, both for GLD and Ops Nanook and Quimiq.  It is seen as a show of respect for the hospitality shown by the city and indeed the province or state of whatever locale we are visiting.

I don't know the reasoning behind the current guidance in Man Sea, but maybe it needs to be re-written.  It is certainly not current practice, nor has it been for some time.  I would do it myself, bu I am at sea.  Maybe I will ask some of my friends working at shore jobs at HQs to look into it.  They likely have more time than me to worry about these things...to even notice those paras exist, quite frankly...I have a multi ship SURFIREX to run in the meantime...
 
MARS said:
I don't know the reasoning behind the current guidance in Man Sea, but maybe it needs to be re-written.  It is certainly not current practice, nor has it been for some time.  I would do it myself, bu I am at sea.  Maybe I will ask some of my friends working at shore jobs at HQs to look into it.  They likely have more time than me to worry about these things...to even notice those paras exist, quite frankly...I have a multi ship SURFIREX to run in the meantime...

Hope all goes well on the exercise, sir.    :)
 
Fred Herriot said:
Hope all goes well on the exercise, sir Dude.    :)

There.  More correct (in his case.)  :rofl:
 
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