Iceberg Ship Habbakuk
1942: Hitler's U-Boats are ravaging merchant ships that Britain depends on for its survival. Enter a plan, for a gigantic warship, to help the Allies win the Battle of the Atlantic. It will be built in Canada and made from ... ice! Richard Longley tells the story of iceberg ship Habbakuk, in all its icy eccentricity.
In late spring of 1940, nine and a half months after the war against Hitler began in Europe, the writing was on the wall: France had fallen to the Germans and Britain was now on its own in the fight against Nazi Germany.
On June 18th 1940, the Prime Minister of Great Britain, Winston Churchill, stood in the House of Commons, and spoke of what would come next. That summer, the Battle of Britain began. It was fought entirely in the air, the RAF - Britain's Royal Air Force - against the German Luftwaffe. In the midst of this, "Project Habbakuk" was born. A wild, some say crazy idea, for a gigantic warship the British could deploy in the Atlantic: an Aircraft Carrier, built of ice.
Participants in the show:
Andrew Brown, Belfer Centre for Science and International Affairs, Harvard University.
David Edgerton, Hans Rausing Professor, Imperial College London.
Vice-Admiral Ralph Hennessy, Royal Canadian Navy (Retired).
Susan Langley, State Underwater Archaeologist, Maryland Historical Trust.
Henry Martens, Alternative Service Worker with Project Habbakuk at Patricia Lake, Alberta.
Bill Rawling, Historian, Department of National Defence, Canada.
Roger Sarty, Professor, Department of History, Wilfrid Laurier University
Director of Research, Laurier Centre for Military, Strategic and Disarmament Studies.
David Zimmerman, Professor of Military History, University of Victoria.
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