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MILNEWS.ca News Highlights – 22 Sept 11

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  • Libya Mission  NATO goes for three month extension – more from the SecGen here.
  • Afghanistan (1)  A new ROTO is training and getting ready in Edmonton.
  • Afghanistan (2)  Terry Glavin on negotiating with the Taliban“…. In Washington, London and Brussels, the whole point now is to convince “war-weary” electorates that capitulation is compromise, that the whole nightmare was brought about by stupid neo-conservatives, and that the problem is an incorrigibly violent and uncivilized Afghan people in whom we need not see the basic human rights we ordinarily recognize in our fairer-skinned selves. In the world’s rich and comfortable countries, and perhaps especially in Canada, this is what it means nowadays to be on the side of the angels.”  More here.
  • MacKay’s Helicopter Ride  New Target:  the Defence Minister“Defence Minister Peter MacKay used one of only three search-and-rescue helicopters available in Newfoundland to transport him from a vacation spot last year, CTV News has learned. MacKay was picked up at a private salmon fishing lodge along the Gander River last July by a Canadian Forces Cormorant helicopter. Military sources said the order to collect MacKay came from the defence minister’s own office. “This is not a common practice . . . this is the only time a search-and-rescue asset was used as shuttle service,” a source told CTV News ….”
  • Natynczyk’s Plane Rides (1)  Opinion, from former RCAF officer: “…. Any use of military aircraft by the chief, to my mind, is justifiable if he as the head of Canada’s military makes a decision to use them. Come on folks, the general is not out for a joyride on a Challenger aircraft ….”
  • Natynczyk’s Plane Rides (2)  Opinion, from a blogger“…. While Robert Fife should not be criticized for bringing the issue forward for debate, he should be taken to task by not providing a more through analysis of the Chief of the Defence Staff’s travelling costs, especially since they were pre-authorized or incurred to satisfy the obligations of his position as head of the military ….”
  • The old adage that good advice is certain to be ignored is given new meaning in a study that concludes Canada’s Defence Department pays almost no attention to what experts and parliamentarians say. The report, “Let Sleeping Dogs Lie,” argues that mountains of studies and recommendations from academics and even House of Commons and Senate committees almost never find their way into government policy. The advice is allowed to collect dust, according to the study being released this week by the defence management institute at Queen’s University in Kingston, Ont. Researchers Douglas Bland and Richard Shimooka paint a picture of combative defence bureaucrats and advisers who pay lip service to suggestions and then stuff reports into filing cabinets once the media has lost interest ….”
  • Why was a Canadian military with 65,000 men and women on active duty and 25,000 reservists sorely tested by the task of keeping 1,500 soldiers in the field in Afghanistan? Why are Arctic sovereignty patrols a strain on the same military? The way Andrew Leslie sees it, it’s because the Canadian Forces’ tail has grown bigger than its teeth ….”
  • More on what one former officer says Canada’s Reserves should be looking like – the report here (PDF), and some more media coverage of the report here and here.
  • A bit of editorial comment on “what should be done with the Reserves” report:  “…. The army likes a big standing army because it wants regular soldiers it can order around full-time, not part-timers who come and go. The smaller the standing army, after all, the less justification there is for a bloated bureaucracy. (Not that there’s ever a good justification for bureaucratic bloat, but it’s easier to dismiss for a large organization than for a small one). So they just didn’t do it ….”
  • What’s Canada Buying? (1)  Nasty allegations over the contract to provide moving services to the CF and rest of the public service “The losing bidder for a billion-dollar contract to relocate Canada’s military, RC-MP and public servants levelled allegations of bid-rigging and an ensuing attempt at a coverup against the federal government on the first day of a civil trial Wednesday. Bruce Atyeo, president of Envoy Relocation Services, is seeking $62 million in damages and is accusing Public Works of having a conflict of interest when it twice awarded a competitor, Royal LePage Relocation Services, the contract to provide the services in 2002 and again in 2004. The awarding of the contracts has been mired in controversy, internal probes and several investigations by the Canadian International Trade Tribunal ….”
  • What’s Canada Buying? (2)  “The Canadian Space Agency in collaboration with Environment Canada, the Department of National Defence, Natural Resources Canada and the Communications Research Center (hereinafter referred to as the clients) is examining the potential for a communications and weather services satellite system referred to as the Polar Communications and Weather (PCW) Mission, a Mission which will in its operations, contribute to resolving some of the challenges and at the same time, leverage opportunities in the Arctic. This Mission is currently in Phase A (Concept study) of development with a launch date targeted for 2017. PCW will provide high capacity, continuous communication services throughout the Canadian Arctic as well as meteorological Earth observations leading to improved weather forecasting …. The purpose of this Request for Proposal is to …. perform a study that will quantify and delineate the socio economic benefits resulting from the proposed Polar Communications and Weather (PCW) Mission, in terms of the projected improvement in the quality of weather forecasts, including those associated with space weather events, and in terms of the benefits accruing from filling the gap in communications over the Canadian high Arctic region ….”  More on the study and the PCW mission here (14 page PDF).
  • What’s Canada Buying? (3)  Wanted:  slick new live fire target system with robotic figures “running” around on their own for research at CFB Suffield.
  • What’s Canada Buying? (4)  Wanted:  someone to “build and install a new monument on Tilley Avenue, Gagetown, New Brunswick”.
  • What’s Canada Buying? (5)  Wanted:  “Support to analytical, numerical and experimental investigations in flight mechanics” various projectiles, mini-UAVs or missiles – more in the tech documents here (6 page PDF).
  • What’s Canada Buying? (6) Wanted: “Suspenders, Trousers, overall cotton, elastic and webbing color: average green, adjustable length; leather six-point button straps”, quantity: up to 24,600 sets – more technical details on what the CF specifically seeks in a set of suspenders here (11 page PDF).
  • Letter to the editor writer seeks “balance” in submarine coverage “…. The point is, these are not like the Chevy sitting in your driveway. Submarines are incredibly complex machines and require huge amounts of maintenance. The Royal Canadian Navy has four submarines. At the moment, none is operational, but one will be next year, followed by another the year after. With only four hulls, that is to be expected. When you talk of the submarines being laid up longer than expected, you also have to remember the huge expenditures (and rightly so) on military equipment acquired due to the war in Afghanistan, which obviously took funds away from the work on the boats ….”
  • A chunk of Canada’s aviation history to be paved over to make a hockey rink“Second World War pilot Philip Gray says it is “immoral” that Downsview Park is evicting the Canadian Air and Space Museum. “This is a terrible way to repay young 21-year-old boys who went to war and never turned 22. I am disgusted that their heritage can be just wiped out,” the 89-year-old Gray said Tuesday as the museum was packing up artifacts. “I got the shock of my life when I heard this. We could lose all this history. It makes you wonder what these boys died for … a government that doesn’t care about heritage.” Downsview Park — which gave the eviction notice on Tuesday — is a federal park. There was no notice given for the eviction, museum CEO Robert Cohen said ….”
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MILNEWS.ca News Highlights – 7 Sept 11

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  • Stuart Langridge, R.I.P  In late April 2011, the Military Police Complaints Commission (MPCC) said it was doing an initial probe into the 2008 suicide of Corporal Langridge of CFB Edmonton.  Now, the MPCC says it’s going to hold public hearings into the suicide – no dates set yet.  More from the media here (Google News search).
  • Libya Mission  One columnist’s view:  “…. If the foreigners’ motives really were humanitarian — they wanted to stop Gadhafi’s atrocious regime from killing his own subjects, and thought that Libyans would be better off without him — then they actually were using force as an instrument of love. Not “love” as in the love songs, but love meaning a genuine concern for the welfare of others. Most resorts to force do not meet this criterion (although those using the force generally claim that they do). The United States did not invade Iraq out of concern for the welfare of Iraqis, for example. But once in a while there is a shining exception, and this is one of those times. The British, French, Canadians, Swedes, Qataris and so on would not have done it if it involved large casualties in their own forces. (In fact, they had no casualties.) Most Western soldiers didn’t think the operation would succeed in removing Gadhafi, and the outcome has been greeted with surprise and relief in most of the capitals that sent aircraft. But they did it, and that counts for a lot.”
  • 9/11 Plus Ten (1)  Canadians are more concerned about a terrorist attack on Canada now than before 9/11, says a new (Ipsos-Reid poll conducted for Postmedia News and Global TV). Enhanced airport security, no-fly lists and Canada’s participation in the Afghanistan war are just some of the considerable measures taken after 9/11, but Canadians are still worried about potential terrorist attacks within our borders. Half of the respondents said they felt “no change” in safety levels with military intervention and just under half feel ‘more safe’ as a result of domestic security measures ….”
  • 9/11 Plus Ten (2)  The CSIS Info-Machine is sharing some stories from officers about their feelings about 9/11 here and here – a bit of a “Canadian milestones in counter-terrorism since 9-11” selected chronology here.
  • Wanted:  some damned good number crunchers and technogeeks for breaking codes.  “It boasts some of the top math minds in the country, it’s looking to recruit more, and you still won’t find its name listed among any universities. The Tutte Institute for Mathematics and Computing is like a school for spies – a government-backed “classified research institute” that exists to entice academics who can help the government create and crack codes in the service of national security. The federal government has actually employed a small stable of arms-length academic cryptographers for several years now, but this summer it opted to redouble and rebrand the effort. In doing so, Ottawa has stepped up its quiet drive to lure some of the smartest PhD-calibre mathematicians away from ivory towers and into applied government work ….”  And where’d the name of the new institute, part of Communications Security Establishment Canada, come from? “…. In the 1940s, William Tutte, a math genius, figured out ways to spy on encrypted, high-level Nazi communications, a contribution so profound that some observers now credit him and his British colleagues for helping hasten the end of the Second World War. After the war, Mr. Tutte moved to Canada and had a distinguished academic career at the University of Waterloo ….”
  • Afghanistan (1)  Canadian Major General Michael Day talks to Army News about the Afghan training mission (video of phone interview here), saying he sees some progress:  “…. Two years ago, the army was shrinking, literally we were losing more people than we were gaining. Today, not only are we growing by four to five thousand every single month, but we now have selection process that vets those individuals that are not suited. So we are in great shape on that ….”
  • Afghanistan (2a)  7 Jul 11:  CF Info-Machine tells us Canadian takes over command of Consolidated Fielding Centre in Afghanistan.  ~6 Sept 11:  Foreign Affairs Info-Machine sends RSS feed notice that it’s decided to share this “news” on Canada’s main web page about Afghanistan.
  • Afghanistan (2b)  What the dental surgeon used to do in Afghanistan (via CF Info-Machine) – he’s been back for a couple of weeks now.
  • Afghanistan (3a)  A Macleans columnist reminds us to be wary about negotiating with the Taliban, even if that’s how things look to be unfolding. “…. In the event the Taliban do re-establish themselves in Kabul, those Afghans who go to the mountains will likely include those Afghans who most share our values and most desire our friendship. Then what will we do?”\
  • Afghanistan (3b)  Terry Glavin reminds us to be wary, too“…. The Taliban have made it quite plain, by word and deed, that they have no intention of negotiating anything except the general outlines of the civilized world’s capitulation to them and the forward-planning terms of NATO’s surrender of the Afghan people to their custody ….”
  • Taliban Propaganda Watch  English-language propaganda sites back online – for now.
  • What’s Canada Buying?  Wanted:  four-wheel light utility vehicles for 1 Canadian Division (more details in part of bid document here), and checking if CF is using the best test to see if patients receiving transfusions need more or not.
  • New Brunswick is looking for feedback on its ideas for job protection for Reservists.  “Finding the right balance can sometimes be a tricky and nerve-testing procedure. But efforts to do just that are exactly what’s happening these days within the part-time military community as officials juggle ideas in an effort to find ways to make the lives of reservist soldiers in this province a little more secure. In April, residents were asked to participate in a provincial government consultation process and provide their views on how to offer better leave protection to reservists working in civilian jobs or pursuing post-secondary studie …. Ideas were collected by the Department of Post-Secondary Education, Training and Labour and placed in a preliminary report called What We Heard: Responses to the Review of Canadian Forces Reservist Employment and Education Leave Protection in New Brunswick. (PDF) …. If you have ideas on how you would like to see reservists protected in this province, now is the time to step forward. Contact the Department of Post-Secondary Education, Training and Labour.”  Contact info:  labour-travail@gnb.ca, fax (506) 453-3618 or snail mail at Department of Post-Secondary Education, Training and Labour, Review of Reservists Employment and Education Leave Protections, P.O. Box 6000, Fredericton, NB, E3B 5H1.
  • Canada has has new deal for annual defence think tank get together.  “The Honourable Peter MacKay, Minister of National Defence, announced …. that Canada is hosting the third annual Halifax International Security Forum from November 18th to 20th in Halifax, Nova Scotia. With Foreign Affairs as the media partner, this year’s Halifax International Security Forum features over three hundred politicians, academics, policy makers, and journalists from forty countries around the world. Following the 10th anniversary of the September 11th, 2001 terrorist attacks and Canada’s recent transition to a non-combat training role in Afghanistan, this year’s forum is especially poignant, focusing on key sensitive and emerging global issues …. As the only event of its kind in North America, the Halifax International Security Forum fosters discussions covering a wide range of topics, including the future of the transatlantic alliance, security initiatives in the Middle East, revolutions, responsibility to protect and making better use of resources to deliver on key security and defence commitments. The Halifax International Security Forum is even stronger with Foreign Affairs, the conference’s media partner. Minister MacKay took the opportunity to announce a three year funding partnership for the Halifax International Security Forum from both the Department of National Defence and the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency ….”
  • Remember the list o’ war criminals Canada was looking for your help in hunting downGuess where one of the guys on the original list is?  “An accused Serbian war criminal says his life has been ruined by an Ottawa-led manhunt, even though he left Canada for his homeland six years ago. Dimitrije Karic, also known as Dimitrije Mita, 51, of the Serbian municipality of Kovin, said he came to Canada in 2003 and filed a failed refugee claim. He complied with an order to leave Canada in 2005. “Is anyone, who was wearing a uniform in war in former Yugoslavia, a war criminal for you?” he said in an Aug. 30 e-mail to QMI Agency. “If it is so, there are several hundred thousand war criminals throughout Croatia, Bosnia and Serbia.” He lived and worked at two companies in Medicine Hat, Alta., during his time in Canada, documents show ….”
  • Remember Gilad Schalit, the Israeli soldier kidnapped by Hamas in June 2006?  His folks are telling reporters Canada should get Hamas to let him go.  What’s Canada saying so far?  “…. Chris Day, director of communications for Canada’s Foreign Affairs Minister John Baird, told the Tribune in an email, “Hamas is a listed terrorist organization. The government of Canada has no contact with Hamas.” Canadian aid is supplied to the people of Gaza through “established aid channels and with established organizations” and not via Hamas. Should Hamas and Fatah form a unity government, Day said, “Canada cannot support a government that includes Hamas.” In May, Canada was a signatory to the G8 Declaration of Renewed Commitment for Freedom and Democracy, which stated in part, “We demand the unconditional release of the abducted soldier Gilad Shalit [sic] without delay.” When asked what concrete action Canada can or will take in regard to Gilad Schalit, Day said, “Minister Baird has been very clear in calling – as G8 leaders did at Deauville – for Gilad Shalit’s [sic] release…. We will continue to press this case at every opportunity.” ….”  But not directly to the folks holding him, given the bits in green.
  • The re-incarnated NHL’s Winnipeg Jets (have) unveiled their new uniforms …. The Jets, who returned to Winnipeg with the sale of the Atlanta Thrashers to Manitoba’s True North Sports and Entertainment in May, held a news conference to unveil the team’s new uniforms at Royal Canadian Air Force base 17 Wing. The jerseys consist mostly of two shades of blue: Polar Night Blue, found on many of today’s RCAF aircraft, and Aviator Blue, which is similar to historical colours used by the RCAF ….”

MILNEWS.ca News Highlights – 12 Jul 11

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  • Afghanistan (1)  A new staging area is being set up in Kuwait to replace Camp Mirage, in the country that dare not speak its name.  “…. the Honourable Peter MacKay, Minister of National Defence, as part of two days of meetings in the Middle East, stewarded the signing of a Canada-Kuwait Memorandum of Understanding (MOU). The Memorandum of Understanding is a framework document to allow for logistical support to Canadian operations in Afghanistan. Canada and Kuwait enjoy a steadfast friendship and strong bilateral relations …. The movement of equipment and vehicles from Afghanistan requires access to both an airport and sea terminal for the transhipment of materiel back to Canada. The establishment of this support presence in Kuwait allows this to happen in a safe and controlled environment ….”  More from a CF backgrounder here, The Canadian Press here, QMI/Sun Media here, the Globe & Mail here and Postmedia News here.
  • Afghanistan (2)  Canada has finally kept its promise to a brave Afghan interpreter who served alongside Canadian combat troops in Kandahar. Just days after going public in the Sunday Star with his fears of being abandoned as the last Canadians pull out of southern Afghanistan this month, Sayed Shah Sharifi got word that he can have a visa to immigrate to Canada. Shah, 23, was sitting at the front gate of his family’s Kandahar home, with his brother and two cousins, when his cellphone beeped Saturday morning with the text message that not only changed his life, but may well have saved it. It told him to call an official from the International Organization for Migration, an intergovernmental agency that helps bring endangered Afghans to Canada ….”
  • Afghanistan (3)  One B.C. Reservist’s story.  “A veteran of the conflict in Afghanistan says he wouldn’t think twice about leaving the Okanagan for another tour. Peachland’s Master Corporal Chris Hilland served 8 months running convoy missions with an armoured vehicle crew in 2008, and now works as a reservist with the BC Dragoons in Kelowna. “It was the most rewarding experience of my military career, if not my entire life,” says Hilland, “I got to go to another country to bring a bit of Canada with me and give people the opportunity to experience some of the freedoms that we have here in Canada,” he says. Hilland believes Canada’s involvement in Afghanistan has made the country a better place, making it safer and easier for working people to provide for their families. He adds most of the Afghans he would talk to on a daily basis were appreciative of Canada’s involvement in ousting the Taliban from power and attempting to establish democratic government ….”
  • Afghanistan (4)  More legacy storyline, this time from families of the fallen.  “The battle may be over, but the sacrifices will never be forgotten. As Canada withdraws its combat troops from Kandahar, the families of Southwestern Ontario soldiers who paid the ultimate price agree Canada should be proud of its military legacy in Afghanistan ….”
  • Afghanistan (5)  Another legacy story, but this time, what the war has left behind in Edmonton“…. it felt, very much, like Edmonton’s war, in which soldiers and reservists based here played a disproportionately large role. Approximately one-third of those who served in Afghanistan were based here -as were 41 of the 157 who died. Every rotation of the mission included some troops from CFB Edmonton. This war hit close to home, especially in those north Edmonton neighbourhoods near the base, and in northern bedroom communities such as Bon Accord and Gibbons, St. Albert and Morinville. Of course, Edmonton was a garrison town long before the Afghan mission started. But these past 10 years have transformed our city’s relationship with the military, reminding us forcibly that the soldiers we sent off to fight were our neighbours, our workmates, our friends ….”
  • Afghanistan (6)  At least one organization in Manitoba is helping mobilize events honouring the just-wound-down mission.  “Canada’s combat role in Afghanistan has ended although some 900 service personnel will remain to train the Afghan Military and Police forces. Manitoba has deployed some 1000 soldiers to Afghanistan over the past years and an organization has been formed to welcome our troops home and thank them for their dedication, service and in seven cases, the ultimate sacrifice. Military Heritage of Manitoba Inc., has formed “Manitoba Salutes”.. It’s a program supported by community, business, government and military personnel, to stage and assist in the coordination of a series of events to publicly recognize and celebrate the service and sacrifice of military personnel. “Manitoba Salutes” will provide assistance to organizations that currently stage military recognition events and provide a military presence at annual fairs and other community events ….”
  • Afghanistan (7)  Crystal balling what’s next for the CF“…. So at the end of the Kandahar mission — one which has entailed tragic human sacrifice and injury within the Canadian Forces and massive financial expenditures by the government of Canada — we have the positive by-product of a much more robust and capable, experienced, more internationally respected, and confident military force. Exactly what we do with this going forward will largely be determined by the flow of international events, which are far beyond Canada’s control or even influence ….”
  • Afghanistan (8)  A Sault Ste. Marie Reserve unit wonders how much it can help the new mission.  “…. “We committed a lot of people to the mission for a unit our size,” said Lt. Col. Blake Golder, commanding officer of the 49th Field Regiment, the Pine Street Armoury reserve unit that sent 33 personnel to Afghanistan since 2006. He believes as many as 50 reservists, about one third of the unit, may have volunteered for assignment but were denied because their skills were not required or because of medical problems. Usually, the Armed Forces were augmented by several hundred reservists for a six-month tour of Afghanistan, the 49th specializing in artillery, military police assistance and headquarters staffing. “I imagine there is a role for the regiment in Canada’s new mission, but I have yet to see anything on the qualifications needed for consideration,” said Golder ….”
  • Taliban Propaganda Watch:  A couple of alleged attacks on Canadians from earlier this month.
  • Special ops choppers over Windsor starting tonight.  Helicopters from 427 Special Operations Aviation Squadron will conduct urban night flying training in Windsor, Ontario from 12-14 July, 2011. This training will help familiarize the pilots with the challenges of flying in an urban environment at night. The training is scheduled to occur on 12 and 13 July between 10 p.m. and approximately 1 a.m. If the training is cancelled on either of these dates due to inclement weather, there may be flights on the 14 July. The helicopters will be visible operating at a low altitude in close proximity to the Chrysler Building at 1 Riverside Drive. The helicopters will approach the building at a low altitude from a variety of directions, hover over the building for a brief period of time and then depart and repeat the process until the pilots have become proficient ….”  More on that here.
  • F-35 Tug o’ War:  Even Holland is slowing down its acquisition of F-35’s (thanks to Mark Collins for this one). “The Netherlands has decided to delay and stretch out its acquisition of the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter. In a July 1 letter to parliament, defense minister Hans Hillen says that a revised plan, reflecting the most recent schedule changes “starts the flow of production aircraft in 2019, and lasts until 2027″ ….”
  • What’s Canada Buying: Big Honkin’ Ship Edition  As Ottawa prepares to award two mega contracts for shipbuilding, a political bun fight has broken out regarding which provinces should get the $33-billion booty. Both the Conservative government and New Democrats initially declared the process must be free of political shenanigans, with the contracts being awarded transparently, purely on merit. But this is Canada. And there are four bids in a contest that will see only two provinces receive the thousands of jobs and industrial benefits that will flow from the work. Last week, several New Democrats from Quebec suggested the process is being too rushed to allow their province a fair shot in the bidding process. That prompted B.C. cabinet minister Ed Fast to step forward: “I don’t know where the NDP is coming from. We had hoped the whole process would be clear of political interference.” NDP press secretary Marc-Andre Viau defended his party’s politicking: “Our Quebec City MPs want sustainable shipbuilding jobs for the people of their region.” ….”
  • What’s Canada Buying?  Wanted:  Someplace to house, feed visiting military bands for a big get-together in Quebec, help in researching use of UAVs over land and sea (Statement of Work downloadable here) and figuring out better ways to identify ships electronically.
  • Canada (reportedly) taking part in multi-national exercise in Chile.  “A multinational peaceful military exercise was launched in Chile on Monday to enhance the participating forces’ capability to handle peacetime missions. A total of 600 soldiers from Brazil, Canada, Ecuador, El Salvador, the United States, Mexico, Uruguay and Chile are involved in the joint exercise code-named “Huemul” that lasts till July 15. The drill is aimed at better preparing the forces for such tasks as humanitarian aid, peacekeeping and disaster relief, Chilean Defense Minister Andres Allamand said during the launching ceremony.”  More from the Chilean Army in Spanish here (Google translation of news release here) and Spanish-language media here (Google translation here).
  • Artcic Watch  A Coast Guard vessel is heading to the Arctic where scientists will map out another section of the continental shelf, staking out the undersea territory and resources that belong to Canada. The Louis St-Laurent will be accompanied on its four-month mission by the United States Coast Guard cutter Healy. This is the fourth year that a Canadian ship has spent mapping the shelf that lies below the Arctic waters to determine where it extends beyond the limit of 200 nautical miles from shore over which Canada already has exclusive jurisdiction to exploit and explore …”
  • One historian’s opinion:  It is entirely appropriate that the Canadian military play an important role in Canadian citizenship ceremonies and in all other manner of public celebrations in Canada from the welcome of foreign leaders, to major national sports celebrations, and even to provincial and civic ceremonious occasions. Such participation not only reflects historical reality, it also signifies that the Canadian Forces are a central institution of Canadian government, because the defence of the nation is key to both Canadian governance and independence ….”
  • A British soldier training in western Canada appears to have been shot during a live-fire training exercise.  “A British soldier has been shot twice by a fellow squaddie in a training-ground exercise. The lance sergeant was hit in the arm and leg. He suffered substantial blood loss from a severed artery. Army chiefs believe the shooting during live-fire training in the plains of Alberta, Canada, was a horrific accident. The victim, a Grenadier Guardsman, was flown to the UK for surgery at Selly Oak military hospital in Birmingham ….”  A bit more here.

MILNEWS.ca News Highlights – 19 Mar 11

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  • No Fly Zone Libya (1) – CF-18’s from Bagotville on their way.
  • No Fly Zone Libya (2) – Libya declares ceasefire. Sort of.
  • No Fly Zone Libya (3) – Column:  ceasefire a ruse?
  • No Fly Zone Libya (4) – PM Harper heads to Paris to talk Libya. More from CBC.ca here.
  • No Fly Zone Libya (5) – DefMin MacKay: “…. Our response to the instability in Northern Africa demonstrates once again that our Canadian Forces are a highly trained and motivated team that is ready to deploy anywhere in the world on short notice. I am sure I speak for all Canadians when I say how proud I am that our soldiers, sailors, airmen and airwomen stand for freedom and democracy. oday’s deployment shows the readiness and professionalism of the Canadian Forces as we work with our allies in this important mission to protect Libya’s civilian population against tyranny. The agility of our Canadian Forces personnel and the support of their families make this rapid deployment possible.”
  • No Fly Zone Libya (6) – What Libyan ceasefire? “Pro-Gaddafi tanks are inside Libya’s rebel stronghold of Benghazi, a BBC journalist has witnessed, as the city came under attack. A jet appears to have been shot down over the city in spite of a declared ceasefire and a UN no-fly resolution. World leaders are due to meet in Paris to discuss military action. The rebel leader has appealed to the international community to stop the pro-Gaddafi bombardment, but the government denies claims of attacks. “Now there is a bombardment by artillery and rockets on all districts of Benghazi,” Mustafa Abdul Jalil told Al Jazeera television. “There will be a catastrophe if the international community does not implement the resolutions of the UN Security Council. “We appeal to the international community, to the all the free world, to stop this tyranny from exterminating civilians.” ….” Can you say “human shields”?  More from Bloomberg here, Reuters here, and Xinhua here.
  • No Fly Zone Libya (7) – Libyan fighter plane drops from sky. More from CNN here.
  • More news on the latest in Libya here (Google News), here (EMM News Brief:  Libya),  here (NewsNow), and here (BBC).
  • In other CF-related news, Alberta’s policing watchdog and the CF’s National Investigation Service is looking into the death of a Canadian soldier in custody at CFB Edmonton. “A Canadian soldier is in hospital after being found without any vital signs in a detention cell at the Edmonton Garrison. The soldier, who was under military police custody, was found Wednesday evening and rushed to hospital. There is no word on the soldier’s condition or extent of injuries. The Alberta Serious Incident Reponse Team (ASIRT) is investigating with the help of the Canadian Forces National Investigation Service. Part of ASIRT’s investigation will focus on the actions of the military police in relation to the incident.” More from the Globe & Mail here.  An online obituary for soldier in question is here.

MILNEWS.ca News Highlights – 22 Dec 10

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