Command of the Seas: Arctic is part of the U.S. Navy’s 1950s film series that promotes the Navy’s activities in the world’s oceans to establish and maintain “command of the seas” to ensure global security. In this short film, the focus is on the emerging presence of the Navy in the Arctic Ocean. The film opens with shots of U.S. warships (01:17) as the narrator explains the role the U.S. Navy has in keeping the seas peaceful. The one place still untamed is the Arctic. The Arctic (01:55) poses unique dangers to naval navigation. In order to extend its “command of the seas,” the U.S. Navy establishes experimental bases near the Arctic Circle. Using Navy icebreakers, the Navy brings sailors and scientists to the Arctic to establish the base and explore and study the region. Part of the operation involves the Navy’s research into operational effects of the extreme cold on its ships. The obstacles presented by the ice fields lead to the Navy’s development of new navigation techniques, including using helicopters (04:00) to scout out the best paths through the ice. Ships push through ice, but they are frequently stopped, leading to the use of explosives (05:30) to clear a path to open water. It may take days of fighting through ice to get to open water. Once through the ice fields and in sight of land, the ship’s crew makes for shore aboard landing craft (06:08); transporting men and cargo often takes seemingly countless trips. Once on land, the Navy uses tractors to transport supplies, including oil, which is critical to the use of heavy machines. While the Navy uses heavy machines to move around, the local Inuit people use dog sleds, including Ootah, one of the Inuit’s who assisted Robert Peary’s mission to the North Pole. The Navy prepares for another Arctic mission (08:15), loading special designed trek vehicles onto an icebreaker. Months of planning go into the mission of establishing a naval base in the Arctic. Rough seas (09:48) face the ships as they head to the Arctic. “Lilly pad” ice (10:45) create abnormal conditions, allowing the Navy to test a submarine. The task force arrives at its destination to build a permanent base and airfield. The crew unloads cargo and builds (12:40) portable housing that is then transported to the site of the base. Special diesel fuel is developed for Arctic operations. During much of the year, the airfield must be kept clear and functional by constant plowing and using field-marking landing lights. From its new base, the Navy continues to explore the Arctic and conducts new experiments as part of its mission to maintain “command of the seas.”
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This film is part of the Periscope Film LLC archive, one of the largest historic military, transportation, and aviation stock footage collections in the USA. Entirely film backed, this material is available for licensing in 24p HD, 2k and 4k. For more information visit http://www.PeriscopeFilm.com