Saturday, January 5, 2008

Restore our Naval Traditions

A Naval Ensign for Canada and a Royal Prefix for Her Navy

St. George's Ensign has been an integral part of the Canadian naval landscape ever since John Cabot landed at Newfoundland in 1497.

The petition to restore the 'Royal' designation to the Canadian navy and Canadian air force in time for the naval centennial (1910-2010) has now surpassed three thousand signatures! It is one thing to receive 3,000 unique visitors to a blog, which entails all of 3,000 clicks of the mouse button; it is quite another thing to get 3,000 people to fill out a petition form and leave behind comments. In addition to the signatures, the petition has literally received hundreds of onsite comments full of impassioned pleas to make it happen. Reading each and every one of them warms the cockles, along with the emails expressing encouragement to repair Paul Hellyer's mess that was inflicted on the R.C.N. and R.C.A.F. in 1968, when he was national defence minister. One Hellyer of a mess, indeed.

gb~weThe old White Ensign of the Royal Canadian Navy. The Canadian Navy has been without an official ensign since 1965.

Meanwhile, in an encouraging heraldic development pertaining to the de-Britished and un-Royaled Indian Navy, Andrew Cusack writes: "St. George Guards India's Fleet Once More. In a return to tradition, the old Indian naval ensign is reinstated".

indiageorge4Indian Navy Motto: "May the Lord of the Oceans be auspicious unto us"


US Navy photo taken by MC3 Jason A. Johnston "1730J"

INDIAN OCEAN (Sept. 5, 2007) - St. George's Ensign snaps from the mast of Destroyer INS Ranjit, as it takes position during Malabar 2007, an exercise involving Kitty Hawk and Nimitz Carrier Strike Group and ships of the navies of Australia, India, Japan, and the Republic of Singapore. The Indian Navy is the 5th largest blue-water navy in the world.

Former Ensign of the Indian Navy and the Canadian Forces Naval Jack

In 2001, the Indian Navy experimentally adopted the deplorable Canadian innovation of placing the national flag in the canton and a stylized anchor in the fly, which other than preserving the white background, completely departed from the Anglo tradition of establishing a national variant of St George's Ensign (see below).


The navies of Jamaica, Bahamas, Barbados, India & Trinidad. Notice any pattern?


The Australian and New Zealand navies meanwhile, chose to preserve the Union Jack in the canton but dispense with St. George's Cross, in order to better distinguish themselves from the R.N. at sea, while staying true to their national identities.

CANA0008But back to the abominable Canadian variant, which is not even considered the official naval ensign of the Canadian navy, but the Canadian Forces Naval Jack (i.e., worn at the bow when alongside only). That's because Canada doesn't officially have a navy any more, only a "Maritime Command" of the Canadian Armed Forces.

canne3Why not ditch the anchor, bring back St. George and call it the "Royal Canadian Navy Ensign". Once we reinstitute the Royal prefix to the Canadian navy that is. (Suggested design by Andrew Cusack)

canne2Better yet, deface the ensign with the shield of Canada. Now we're getting somewhere. (Suggested design by Andrew Cusack)

canne1No doubt this is too much to chew politically, but if you really want to get bold, replace the Canadian flag with the Union Jack. (Suggested design by Andrew Cusack)

800px-Canadian_Blue_Ensign.svgAnd if you do all of that, well, you might as well also reinstate the old Jack of the Royal Canadian Navy.


  1. Keeping fighting for your traditions!

  2. Please give credit where credit is due. The photo is a US Navy photo taken by me. MC3 Jason A. Johnston "1730J"

  3. Gentlemen and Ladies,

    Just a short note to wish you the very best of luck with the petition.

    To my way of seeing things from the outside it seems as though the DND has already acknowledged the failure of the experiment of 1968. A cursory look at the offical CF website makes it obvious that the CF is already operating as the three traditional Services!

    Yours Aye,


  4. How about adding "Royal Winnipeg Ballet"? Have to shout out for my hometown...

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The Petition moves along...

May 1: Laurie Hawn, M.P. agrees to support petition
April 30: Sent draft petition to The Dominion Institute to seek their sponsorship
April 28: Sent draft petition to Captain(N) Pickingford, Project Manager, Canadian Navy Centennial Project
April 27: Sent petition to Blaine Barker of the Royal Canadian Naval Association and Bob Nixon of the Naval Officer's Association of Canada and Peter Dawe, Executive Director of the RMC Club
April 26: The Monarchist League of Canada members are supportive
April 25: Interesting - even heated - debate over at the Navy, Army, Air Force Forum, where the "Yeas" have it by a two-thirds majority.