Qaanaaq (pron. KAY-nack), formerly Thule, is a large town in northwestern Greenland. It was named Thule after a European myth. Qaanaaq has a population of approximately 650 inhabitants.
The Thule Air Force Base is a part of the U.S. network of early warning radars, and is an important facility in the recent discussion of the National Missile Defense (NMD). The proposed update of the facility (X-band Radar) to meet the demands of the NMD is controversial within Greenland and Denmark (Greenland is a part of the Kingdom of Denmark). On January 22, 1968, a B-52 crashed seven miles south of the Thule Air Force Base. Nuclear bombs were lost and debris scattered over the area in the accident.
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