Canadian Army

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Canadian Army
Armée canadienne
Lesser badge of the Canadian Army.svg
Founded19 May 1855 (1855-May-19) [1]
(168 years, 364 days ago) [note 1] [5]
CountryCanada [note 2]
Type Army
Role Land warfare
Size44,000 (22,500 active personnel, 21,500 reserve personnel, and 5,300 Canadian Rangers) [6]
Part of Canadian Armed Forces
Headquarters National Defence Headquarters, Ottawa, Ontario
Motto(s)Vigilamus pro te (Latin for ' We stand on guard for thee ') [7]
Colours Rifle green and gold
March"The Great Little Army"
Mascot(s)Juno the Bear [8]
Engagements
Website www.canada.ca/en/army.html OOjs UI icon edit-ltr-progressive.svg
Commanders
Commander-in-Chief Charles III, King of Canada
Commander of the Canadian Army Lieutenant-General Jocelyn Paul
Deputy Commander of the Canadian Army Major-General Peter Scott
Canadian Army Sergeant Major Chief Warrant Officer James Smith
Insignia
Flag Flag of the Canadian Army (2016).svg

The Canadian Army (French : Armée canadienne) is the command responsible for the operational readiness of the conventional ground forces of the Canadian Armed Forces. It maintains regular forces units at bases across Canada, and is also responsible for the Army Reserve, the largest component of the Primary Reserve. The Army is headed by the Commander of the Canadian Army and Chief of the Army Staff, who is subordinate to the Chief of the Defence Staff. The Army is also supported by 3,000 civilian employees from the public service.

Contents

Formed in 1855, as the Active Militia, in response to the threat of the United States to the Province of Canada after the British garrison left for the Crimean War. This Militia was later subdivided into the Permanent Active Militia and the Non-Permanent Active Militia. Finally, in 1940, an order in council changed the name of the Active Militia to the Canadian Army.

On 1 April 1966, prior to the unification of the Canadian Armed Forces, the land forces were placed under a new command called Mobile Command (French: Commandement des forces mobiles). [9] For two years following, the Army existed as a distinct legal entity before its amalgamation with the Royal Canadian Navy and the Royal Canadian Air Force to form the Canadian Armed Forces. In the 1990s, the command was renamed Land Force Command (French: Commandement des Forces terrestres), until it reverted to its original name in August 2011. [10]

During its history, the Canadian Army has fought in a variety of conflicts, including in the North-West Rebellion, the Second Boer War, the First and Second World Wars, Korean War, and more recently with the Gulf War, and in the War in Afghanistan.

History

Formation

Various uniforms used by the Canadian militia, c. 1898 The Canadian Militia, 1898.jpg
Various uniforms used by the Canadian militia, c.1898

Prior to Confederation in 1867, the British Army, which included both "Fencible" Regiments of the British Army—recruited within British North America exclusively for service in North America—and Canadian militia units, was responsible for the defence of Canada. Some current regiments of the Canadian Army trace their origins to these pre-Confederation militia and Fencible units. Following the passage of the Militia Act of 1855, the Permanent Active Militia was formed, and in later decades several regular bodies of troops were created, their descendants becoming the Royal Canadian Horse Artillery, the Royal Canadian Dragoons, and the Royal Canadian Regiment. The major operations that regular Canadian troops, in the 19th century, participated in included: the North-West Rebellion in 1885, and the Second Boer War.

Canadian soldiers en route to South Africa in 1899 Strathcona's Horse.jpg
Canadian soldiers en route to South Africa in 1899

World Wars

During the First World War, the Canadian Army raised the volunteer Canadian Expeditionary Force (CEF) for service overseas, and was the primary Canadian participation to the war effort. [11] [12] [13]

The Canadian Army also fought during the Second World War. Following the declaration of war on Nazi Germany and her allies by the United Kingdom on 3 September 1939, with Prime Minister William Lyon Mackenzie King consulting with the Parliament of Canada and declaring war on 10 September 1939, the Canadian Army raised the Canadian Active Service Force, which initially consisted of the 1st Canadian Division; later increased to form the First Canadian Army. [14] On 19 November 1940, during Second World War, an Order in Council was issued that renamed the Permanent Active Militia as the Canadian Army (Active), supplemented by the Non-Permanent Active Militia, which was named the Canadian Army (Reserve). [4]

Post-war era and recent history (1945-present)

The Army participated in the Korean War, with the first elements of its participation landed in Korea in December 1950 and formed part of the forces who took part in Operation Killer and the Battle of Kapyong. Canadian troops were also committed to the NATO presence in West Germany during the Cold War.

In the years following its unification with the navy and air force in 1968, the size of Canada's land forces was reduced, however, Canadian troops participated in a number of military actions with Canada's allies. These operations included the Gulf War in 1991 and the invasion of Afghanistan in 2001, in addition to various peacekeeping operations under United Nations auspices in different parts of the world. [15] Despite Canada's usual support of British and American initiatives, Canada's land forces did not directly participate in the Suez Crisis, the Vietnam War, or the Iraq War. [16]

Structure

The National Defence Headquarters in Ottawa houses the headquarters for the Canadian Armed Forces, including the commander of the Canadian Army. NDHQ.jpg
The National Defence Headquarters in Ottawa houses the headquarters for the Canadian Armed Forces, including the commander of the Canadian Army.

Command of the Army is exercised by the commander of the Canadian Army within National Defence Headquarters in Ottawa. The Army is divided into four geographical districts: the 2nd Canadian Division is based in Quebec, the 3rd Canadian Division is based in Western Canada, the 4th Canadian Division is based in Ontario, while the 5th Canadian Division is based in Atlantic Canada. [17]

The single operational formation, 1st Canadian Division, is part of the Canadian Joint Operations Command and not part of the Canadian Army. It serves as a deployable headquarters to command a divisional-level deployment of Canadian or allied forces on operations, succeeding the previous Canadian Joint Forces HQ. [18]

In addition to the four regional command areas, the Canadian Army Doctrine and Training Centre, commanded by a major-general and headquartered at McNaughton Barracks, CFB Kingston, Ontario, is responsible for the supervision, integration and delivery of Army training and doctrine development, including simulation and digitization. It includes a number of schools and training organizations, such as the Combat Training Centre at CFB Gagetown, New Brunswick, and the Canadian Manoeuvre Training Centre at CFB Wainwright, Alberta. [19]

Canadian infantry and armoured regimental traditions are strongly rooted in the traditions and history of the British Army. Many regiments were patterned after regiments of the British Army, and a system of official "alliances", or affiliations, was created to perpetuate a sense of shared history. Other regiments developed independently, resulting in a mixture of both colourful and historically familiar names. Other traditions such as battle honours and colours have been maintained by Canadian regiments as well.

The senior appointment within the Canadian Army was Chief of the General Staff until 1964 when the appointment became Commander, Mobile Command in advance of the unification of Canada's military forces. [20] The position was renamed Chief of the Land Staff in 1993. [21] Following the reversion to the name Canadian Army in 2011, the position became Commander of the Canadian Army.

Regular force

A sign for 2 Canadian Mechanized Brigade Group at the entrance to CFB Petawawa. The Mechanized Brigade Group is one of three maintained by the Regular Force. CFBPetawawa.JPG
A sign for 2 Canadian Mechanized Brigade Group at the entrance to CFB Petawawa. The Mechanized Brigade Group is one of three maintained by the Regular Force.

There are presently three Mechanized Brigade Groups in the Canadian Army's Regular Force. Approximately two-thirds of the Regular Force is composed of anglophone units, while one third is francophone. The Mechanized Brigades includes battalions from three infantry regiments, Princess Patricia's Canadian Light Infantry, the Royal Canadian Regiment, and the Royal 22e Regiment.

Between 1953 and 1971, the Regular Canadian Infantry consisted of seven regiments, each maintaining two battalions (except the Royal 22e Régiment, which had three; The Canadian Guards which had four battalions between 1953 and 1957; and the Canadian Airborne Regiment, which was divided into three commandos). In addition to the Canadian Guards, and the Canadian Airborne Regiment, The Queen's Own Rifles of Canada, and The Black Watch (Royal Highland Regiment) of Canada also fielded units that served in Regular Force.

In the years that followed the unification of the Canadian Armed Forces, several units of Regular Force were disbanded, or reduced to nil strength. On 15 September 1968, the 2nd Battalion, The Queen's Own Rifles of Canada was reduced to nil strength and transferred to the Supplementary Order of Battle. Several weeks later, The 1st Battalion of the Canadian Guards was disbanded on 1 October 1968.

In 1970, several more units were reduced to nil strength. The 1st Battalion, The Queen's Own Rifles of Canada was reduced to nil strength and transferred to the Supplementary Order of Battle on 27 April 1970, with the unit's personnel forming the 3rd Battalion, Princess Patricia's Canadian Light Infantry. Further reductions occurred from mid-June to early-July 1970, with the Regular Force unit from The Fort Garry Horse being disbanded on 16 June 1970. The 1st and 2nd Battalions of The Black Watch (Royal Highland Regiment) of Canada were reduced to nil strength on 1 July 1970, and transferred to the Supplementary Order of Battle. Several days later, on 6 July 1970, the 2nd Battalion, The Canadian Guards, were reduced to nil strength and transferred to the Supplementary Order of Battle; while its personnel became a part of 3rd Battalion, The Royal Canadian Regiment. After the Canadian Guards were reduced to nil strength, the role of the Household Troop reverted to the two seniormost infantry regiments of the Reserve. The respective battalions automatically relinquished its numerical battalion designation at that time.

During the 1990s, the Regular Force saw further organizational restructuring. The Canadian Airborne Regiment was disbanded in 1995, [22] while the Regular Force regiment of the 8th Canadian Hussars (Princess Louise's), formed in 1957, was converted to a mixed Regular and Reserve "Total Force" unit with the close-out of 4 Canadian Mechanized Brigade Group at Lahr, Germany in 1994, before reverting to a Reserve regiment in 1997. [23]

Reserve

The Army Reserve is the reserve element of the Canadian Army and the largest component of the Primary Reserve. The Army Reserve is organized into under-strength brigades (for purposes of administration) along geographic lines. The Army Reserve is very active and has participated heavily in all Regular Army deployments in the last decade, in some cases contributing as much as 40 per cent of each deployment in either individual augmentation, as well as occasional formed sub-units (companies). LFR regiments have the theoretical administrative capacity to support an entire battalion, but typically have the deployable manpower of only one or two platoons. They are perpetuated as such for the timely absorption of recruits during times of war. Current strength of the Army Reserve is approximately 18,000. On 1 April 2008, the Army Reserve absorbed all units of the former Communications Reserve.

Organization

The Canadian Army comprises: [24] [25]

Additionally, the command comprises the Canadian Army Doctrine and Training Centre, which includes the following establishments:

Personnel

Rank and insignia

Military rank in the Canadian Army is granted based on a variety of factors including merit, qualification, training, and time in-rank. However, promotion up to the rank of corporal for non-commissioned members, and to captain for officers, is automatic based on time in previous rank. Some ranks are associated with specific appointments. For example, a regimental sergeant major is held by a chief warrant officer, or adjutant held by a captain. In some branches or specific units, rank titles may differ due to tradition. A trained private within the Royal Canadian Armoured Corps is a trooper, whereas the same rank within the artillery is gunner. Other titles for the rank of private include fusilier, sapper, rifleman, craftsman, and guardsman. [26] The ranks of the Canadian Army are as follows:

CanadaCommander-in-chief
Insignia Canadian Army sleeves (Commander-in-Chief of the Canadian Armed Forces).svg Canadian Army (Commander-in-Chief of the Canadian Armed Forces).svg
Title Commander-in-chief
AbbreviationC-in-C
NATO codeOF-10OF-9OF-8OF-7OF-6OF-5OF-4OF-3OF-2OF-1 OF(D) Student officer
Flag of the Canadian Army.svg  Canadian Army [27] [28]
Canadian Army OF-9.svg Canadian Army OF-8.svg Canadian Army OF-7.svg Canadian Army OF-6.svg Canadian Army OF-5.svg Canadian Army OF-4.svg Canadian Army OF-3.svg Canadian Army OF-2.svg Canadian Army OF-1b.svg Canadian Army OF-1a.svg Canadian Army OF (D).svg
General Lieutenant-general Major-general Brigadier-general Colonel Lieutenant-colonel Major Captain Lieutenant Second lieutenant Officer cadet
Général(e)Lieutenant(e)-général(e)Major(e)-général(e)Brigadier(ère)-général(e)Colonel(le)Lieutenant(e)-colonel(le)Major(e)CapitaineLieutenant(e)Sous-lieutenant(e)Élève-officier(ère)
NATO code OR-9OR-8OR-7OR-6OR-5OR-4OR-3OR-2OR-1
Flag of the Canadian Army.svg  Canadian Army [27] [28]
Canadian Army OR-9a.svg Canadian Army OR-8.svg Canadian Army OR-7.svg Canadian Army OR-6.svg Canadian Army OR-5.svg Canadian Army OR-4.svg Canadian Army OR-3.svg Canadian Army OR-2.svg
Chief warrant officer Master warrant officer Warrant officer Sergeant Master corporal Corporal Private (trained) Private (basic)
Adjudant(e)-chefAdjudant(e)-maîtreAdjudant(e)Sergent(e)Caporal(e)-chefCaporal(e)Soldat(e) (formé(e))Soldat(e) (confirmé(e))

Meals

An unpacked cabbage roll IMP. IMPs are issued to personnel when fresh rations are not available. Canadian-Cabbage-Roll-IMP-Unpacked.jpg
An unpacked cabbage roll IMP. IMPs are issued to personnel when fresh rations are not available.

Field kitchens and catering are used to provide Canadian Army personnel fresh-cooked meals at bases and overseas operation centres. When fresh rations are not practical or available, Individual Meal Packs (IMPs) are issued instead. There are also patrol packs, which are small high-protein snack-type foods (such as beef jerky or shredded cheese) and boxed lunches (consisting of assorted sandwiches, juice, fruit, pasta and a dessert) provided for soldiers to consume in situations in which meal preparation is not possible.

Uniforms

The Canadian Army maintains a variety of different uniforms, including a ceremonial full dress uniform, a mess dress uniform, a service dress uniform, operational/field uniforms, and occupational uniforms. Canada's uniforms were developed parallel to British uniforms from 1900 to the unification of the Canadian Armed Forces in 1968, though maintained significant differences. The adoption of a number of separate uniforms for separate functions, also made its uniforms become distinctively "Canadian" in the process.

Members of the Royal 22 Regiment. The public duties soldier is wearing full dress while the other wears the service dress. Changing the Guard ceremony in Quebec during the summer 2018.jpg
Members of the Royal 22 Regiment. The public duties soldier is wearing full dress while the other wears the service dress.

Prior to unification in 1968, the uniforms between the three branches were similar to their counterparts in the forces of the United Kingdom and other Commonwealth countries, save for national identifiers and some regimental accoutrements. The Honourable Peter MacKay, Minister of National Defence, announced on 8 July 2013 the Government of Canada's intent to restore Canadian Army rank insignia, names and badges to their traditional forms. [29]

The Canadian Army's universal full dress uniform includes a scarlet tunic, midnight blue trousers with a scarlet trouser stripe, and a Wolseley helmet. However, a number of regiments in the Canadian Army are authorized regimental deviations from the Army's universal design; including some armoured, Canadian-Scottish regiments, and all rifle/voltigeur regiments. [30] The full dress uniforms of the Army regiments originated from the Canadian militia, and was eventually relegated from combat to ceremonial use.

The present service dress uniform includes a rifle green tunic and trousers, similar to the older iteration of the service dress, although with a different cut, and an added shoulder strap. The present service dress uniforms were introduced in the late 1980s, alongside the other "distinctive environmental uniforms" issued to other branches of the Canadian Armed Forces. From the unification of the armed forces in 1968, to the introduction of the distinctive service uniforms in the 1980s, the branches of the Canadian Armed Forces wore a similar rifle green service uniform.

The Canadian Army began to issue combat specific uniforms in the early 1960s, with the introduction of "combats," coloured olive-drab shirt. The olive-drab uniforms continued to be used with minor alterations until the Army adopted CADPAT camouflaged combat uniforms in the late-1990s. With the adoption of CADPAT, the Canadian Armed Forces became the first military force to adopt digital camouflage pattern for all its units.

Officer training

Officers are selected in several ways:

Officer cadets of the Royal Military College of Canada during the 2009 Sandhurst Competition. The school is a degree-granting institution that trains officers for the Canadian Armed Forces. RMC Sandhurst 2009.JPG
Officer cadets of the Royal Military College of Canada during the 2009 Sandhurst Competition. The school is a degree-granting institution that trains officers for the Canadian Armed Forces.

In addition, there were other commissioning plans such as the Officer Candidate Training Plan and Officer Candidate Training Plan (Men) for commissioning serving members which are no longer in effect.

Occupational training for Canadian Army officers takes place at one of the schools of the Combat Training Centre for Army controlled occupations (armour, artillery, infantry, electrical, and mechanical engineers, etc.), or at a Canadian Armed Forces school, such as the Canadian Forces School of Administration and Logistics, or the Defence Public Affairs Learning Centre for Officers from career fields controlled outside the Army.

Equipment

Canadian Grenadier Guardsmen armed with C7 rifles in "arid region" CADPAT field uniforms. Behind them is an LAV III, an infantry fighting vehicle used by the Canadian Army. GuardKandahar.jpg
Canadian Grenadier Guardsmen armed with C7 rifles in "arid region" CADPAT field uniforms. Behind them is an LAV III, an infantry fighting vehicle used by the Canadian Army.

Canada is an industrial nation with a highly developed science and technology sector. Since the First World War, Canada has produced its own infantry fighting vehicle, anti-tank guided missile and small arms for the Army. Regular and reserve units operate state-of-the-art equipment able to handle modern threats through 2030–2035. Despite extensive financial cuts to the defence budget between the 1960s–2000s, the Army is relatively well equipped. [36] The Army currently operates approximately 10,500 utility vehicles, including G-wagons and 7000-MVs, and also operates approximately 2,700 armoured fighting vehicles including the LAV-III and the Leopard 2. [37] The Army also operates approximately 150 field artillery pieces including the M777 howitzer and the LG1 Mark II. [38]

In 2016 the Army replaced the RG-31 Nyala and Coyote Reconnaissance Vehicle with the Textron Tactical Armoured Patrol Vehicle. [39]

The Army infantry uses the C7 Rifle or C8 Carbine as the basic assault rifle, with grenadiers using the C7 with an attached M203 grenade launcher, and the C9 squad automatic weapon. [40] The Canadian Army also uses the SIG Sauer P320 [41] and the SIG Sauer P226.

Newer variants of the C7/C8 family have since been integrated into common use throughout the Canadian Armed Forces. The C7 has most recently been updated in the form the C7A2. The major internal components remain the same, however, several changes have been made to increase versatility of the rifle. [42]

Tactical communication is provided via the Iris Digital Communications System.

Badge

LANDFORCOM Emblem.svg
1993–2011
CA Emblem.svg
2011–2016
Past versions of the badge used by the Canadian Army, with the years they were in use listed above

The badge of the Canadian Army consists of: [43]

Bases and training centres

The administration building at CFB Montreal, a Canadian Forces base used by the Canadian Army Batiment 42 - Garnison Longue-Pointe - Montreal 01.jpg
The administration building at CFB Montreal, a Canadian Forces base used by the Canadian Army
  1. 2nd Canadian Division
    • 2nd Canadian Division Support Base Montreal
    • Garrison Valcartier
    • Garrison St Jean
    • 2nd Canadian Division Training Centre Valcartier
  2. 3rd Canadian Division
    • 3rd Canadian Division Support Base Edmonton
    • Garrison Wainwright
    • Garrison Shilo
    • 3rd Canadian Division Training Centre Wainwright
    • 3rd Canadian Division Training Centre Detachment Shilo
  3. 4th Canadian Division
    • 4th Canadian Division Support Base Petawawa
    • Canadian Forces Base Kingston
    • 4th Canadian Division Training Centre Meaford
  4. 5th Canadian Division
    • 5th Canadian Division Support Base Gagetown
    • 5th Canadian Division Training Centre Gagetown
    • 5th Canadian Division Training Centre Detachment Aldershot

Canadian Army Journal

Since 1947, the Canadian Army has produced a peer-reviewed academic journal called the Canadian Army Journal. In 1965, prior to the unification of the Canadian Armed Forces, the journal was merged with similar publications from across the services. In 1980, the Canadian Army Doctrine Bulletin began printing as the successor to the original journal, and in 2004 the publication returned to its original name. [44]

See also

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Notes

  1. The Canadian Army originates from the Province of Canada's "Active Militia", created through the Militia Act of 1855 . However, several Canadian Army units perpetuate the battle honours of Canadian units from the War of 1812. [2] The Active Militia was later adopted by the Canadian confederation through the Militia Act of 1868. [3] In 1940, an order in council renamed the Active Militia to the Canadian Army. [4] In 1968, the Canadian Army was formally amalgamated into the Canadian Armed Forces, serving as the forces' land component.
  2. Province of Canada (1855–1867)

Bibliography

Further reading