One chilly fall afternoon a class of engineering students from Montreal’s McSwill University were surveying the City’s Mont Royal with sophisticated hollowmeters they had developed for a project. This sophisticated device allowed one to determine the thickness of any mass which would also determine if there were any hollow areas in the mass. They discovered great hollow spaces in the mountain. The mountain was not solid! Experts soon rushed to the area to carry out more sophisticated tests and their results verified the work of the McSwill engineers.
News quickly spread to Washington and the Pentagon Hawks were jumping for joy. What a grand plan they had. Before making any commitments and with the blessing of the Canadian government they dispatched a corps of army engineers to check on the findings of the northern bush leaguers. You could never trust those Canadians. The hollow area was ideal for the construction of an American nuclear missile base in the heart of a solid mountain within a teeming metropolis in a “neutral country”. Dr. Strangelove could not have asked for more. Involve Canada in the nuclear game and you had an instant ally. Now the Canadians would be blackmailed in acquiescing to an American defence strategy. Their survival would depend on it.
When the Canadian armed forces brass heard about the project they were delighted. For the self-made generals from Moncton, Gander and Halifax and the graduates of the Piss Point Military Academy in Cornwall, Ontario it was a chance for the real big time. Their childhood adulation of fireworks had never died. A meeting was arranged between the American and Canadian military. Even US General Nabalm from Burlington, Vermont who had been wounded in action in Vietnam (syphilis) directing the boys to great defeats was at the meeting. Both of the army teams forged an agreement and the Canadian Prime Minister Poster Pesterboy gave his approval to this top-secret deal. Construction plans were soon underway. The front was to tell all who asked a gigantic sewage plan was being constructed which made good sense as Montreal had been dumping all its untreated sewage in the St. Lawrence River for years. The Montreal Mayor Jean Droolpoop was initially outraged but after he gave serious thought to the construction tender contracts he would take a cut of he switched his dissenting mind.
Well one of Jiber’s men in Washington, well connected of course, spilt the beans on the secret deal to the Canadian media. A political hurricane ravaged the country. Quebec City politicians were sputtering with so much rage at a volume never heard.
The Parliament of Canada was non-plussed and vowed to continue with the sewage plant after “contractual commitments” simply had to be honoured. The clean environment was a priority. Ontario munition and armament manufacturers, having great influence in the Canadian government, also had made their wallets fat servicing American war supply needs in Vietnam were putting on a lobbying effort in Ottawa to pursue construction of the sewage plant. Quebec politicians did not share the joy this sewage plant had created for many. They had no desire to see Montreal and Quebec basted to pieces because of the worst kept secret of the “sewage plant”. A political showdown was inevitable.