19. What event of fall 1995 prompted the Canadian military to dispatch its Quebec-based jet fighters to the United States?
Answer to Canada Quiz #19
The Quebec Referendum of 1995.
In 1995 Quebec’s ruling party, the separatist Parti Québécois, presented a referendum question on whether Quebec should secede from Canada and become an independent state. During the campaign, federal Bloc Québécois leader Lucien Bouchard claimed that should the referendum pass then Quebec would seize the Canadian CF-18 jets based in the province. With polls predicting a close outcome, the aircraft were moved to U.S. bases 4 days before the vote. The documentary Breaking Point reported that the military feared they would become pawns in negotiations following a sovereigntist victory.
The referendum narrowly lost, 50.6% to 49.2%, on October 30, 1995 and the planes returned to Quebec’s Bagotville Base the following day.