That was then: The Russians have come! The Russians have come!

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The following day, however, Tiner’s tale became part of a much larger, front-page story, when other fishermen reported seeing Russian subs off Canada’s east coast.

In Newfoundland, fishermen said they saw them at the Grand Banks. Another had been sighted at George’s Banks off Nova Scotia.

The Cold War had already begun and tensions between the Soviet Union and the U.S. were high. NATO had formed a year earlier, and North Korea had attacked South Korea less than a month before the sub sightings.

Yet Canadian officials had little to say in response to the reports of Soviet subs. “People also see flying saucers,” said Rear Admiral F.L. Houghton, vice chief of the naval staff. “Naturally we are interested in all such reports, but until we can see for ourselves what it is all about, what is there we can say?”

A day later, an unnamed official admitted that there was little doubt that the fishermen’s sightings were well-founded, and that the sub was, indeed, likely Russian. Eventually, there were at least seven such sightings confirmed, and the navy sent ships in search of the alleged sub, but to no official avail.

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