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MISSION TRANSITION

LESSONS OF OPERATIONAL SUPPORT PLUS: Modelling the Navy’s future fleet A case for the Joint Strike Fighter London: A vehicle hub

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DeceMBer/JaNUarY 2012

FeatUreS 10 Ship shape

Warfare centre models Navy’s next generation An interview with Captain (N) William Quinn

14 From contractors to coalitions the lessons of operational support An interview with MGen Mark McQuillan

18 Mission closure

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BGen Charles Lamarre on drawing down KAF by Chris Thatcher

21 the next frontier

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Underwater systems poised for unmanned breakthrough by Chris Thatcher

22 Vehicle ground swell

London growing into thriving Land Force hub by Richard Bray

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24 a commander’s new weapon

Engaging religious leaders through Canadian Forces chaplains by Steve Moore

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DePartMeNtS WWW.VaNgUarDcaNaDa.coM it’S iN tHe arcHiVeS Missed an issue? Misplaced an article? You’ll find them all online: interviews with government, military and industry leaders, and articles on the programs and policies of Canada’s security and defence community.

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iNSiDe iNDUStrY

A call to revisit the Reserves

AgustaWestland sees sAR in presidential parts

26 tHe eDge oF tecH

LetterS We welcome feedback on articles and story ideas. Email assoceditor@vanguardcanada.com.

Consortium to drive medical countermeasures

28 BooKSHeLF

Canada’s place in the age of air power

DECEMBER-JANUARY 2012

THE FORUM FOR CANADA’S SECURITY AND DEFENCE COMMUNITY

www.vanguardcanada.com

MISSION TRANSITION

LESSONS OF OPERATIONAL SUPPORT PLUS: Modelling the Navy’s future fleet A case for the Joint Strike Fighter London: A vehicle hub

coVer StorY technicians from the Mission transition task Force – Mission Closure Unit direct a German Leopard C2 Main Battle tank onto an Antinov aircraft at the Kandahar Airfield. photo: MCpl Dan shouinard

30 tHe LaSt WorD

A case for the Joint strike Fighter

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DECEMBER/JANUARY 2012 3


e eDitor’S NotE EDItoR Chris thatcher assoceditor@netgov.ca coNtriBUtorS William Quinn Mark McQuillan Charles Lemarre steve Moore Lynn Capuano Roy thomas Marco Wyss Alex Wilner eDitoriaL aDViSorY BoarD LGen (Ret’d) Bill Leach LGen (Ret’d) George Macdonald VAdm (Ret’d) Greg Maddison LGen (Ret’d) Michel Maisonneuve SaLeS VICE pREsIDENt pUBLIC sECtoR sALEs terri pavelic (905) 727-4091 ext. 225 terrip@netgov.ca NAtIoNAL ACCoUNt MANAGER Marcello sukhdeo (905) 727-4091 ext. 224 marcellos@netgov.ca MARKEtING DIRECtoR Mary Malofy art & ProDUctioN ARt DIRECtoR Elena pankova SUBScriPtioNS aND aDDreSS cHaNgeS CIRCULAtIoN DIRECtoR James Watson circulation@promotive.net (705) 812-0611 corPorate pUBLIsHER John R. Jones publisher@netgov.ca

publisher’s Mail Agreement: 40052410 Return undeliverable Canadian addresses to circulation dept. 24-4 Vata Court, Aurora, oN L4G 4B6 Vanguard magazine is published 6 times per year by Navatar press. All opinions expressed herein are those of the contributors and do not necessarily reflect the views of the publisher or any person or organization associated with the magazine. Letters, submissions, comments and suggested topics are welcome, and should be sent to assoceditor@netgov.ca REpRINt INFoRMAtIoN: Reproduction or photocopying is prohibited without the publisher’s prior written consent. High quality reprints of articles and additional copies of the magazine are available through circulation@netgov.ca pRIVACY poLICY: We do not sell our mailing list or share any confidential information on our subscribers. VANGUARD oFFICE 24-4 Vata Court, Aurora, oN L4G 4B6 phone: (905) 727-4091 Fax: (905) 727-4428

The evolution of mission support iN aSYMMetric WarFare, there is no “rear,” no safe place behind the frontlines from which to sustain operations. Not matter how materiel is moved – into theatre, out to forward operating bases, or onto to new missions – there is always risk. that constant threat has significantly changed the skills demanded of logistics personnel and the way in which they are trained. As MGen Mark McQuillan, the commander of Canadian operational support Command (CANosCoM), tells us: “When I look at the average soldier today, their intelligence, confidence, abilities and field craft is much stronger.” McQuillan leads a command stood up in 2006 as part of a wider effort to focus the Canadian Forces on operations. CANosCoM has structured that knowledge and skill precisely so mission commanders can focus on their strategic objectives rather than spending days, weeks, even months sorting support logistics. It might not be sexy, but it is essential. BGen Daniel Benjamin, the first commander of CANosCoM, said he could only have wished for a theatre activation team with that kind of skill when he led a mission in the 1990s. “the first month was a nightmare for me. I could not focus on the mission. I had to establish every aspect of the support functions. Being able to come in and focus on your mandate is really fundamental.” In this issue, McQuillan explains how logistics support has evolved, in particular the greater reliance on private contractors. And BGen Charles Lamarre, commander of the final rotation in Kandahar known as the Mission transition task Force, closes an important chapter in Canada’s Afghan campaign. Unlike some of his colleagues, Lamarre had the rare opportunity to plan mission closure, and shares the lessons of preparing and then executing draw down. Also in this issue, Captain (N) William Quinn, commander of the Canadian Forces Maritime Warfare Centre, explains how requirements for the navy’s future fleet will be determined and evaluated in the centre’s sophisticated modeling and simulation facilities. Finally, Major/padre steve Moore describes the evolution of a new capability for chaplains – religious leader engagement (RLE). For task force commanders faced with protecting indigenous populations, RLE offers a more nuanced way to bridge cultural and religious divides.

chris thatcher, Editor 4 DECEMBER/JANUARY 2012

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S Sit REp

Softer side of SOF in growing demand The term “special operations forces” (SOF) tends to conjure up images of a SEAL team descending on a compound in Abbottabad. While covert kinetic operations will remain the raison d’etre of SOF, increasingly special forces are taking on a more visible training role. From Afghanistan to Jamaica to Mali, members of the Canadian Special Operations Regiment (CSOR) have provided specific training to designated units, from basic soldiering in Mali to counter terrorism in Jamaica, to reconnaissance and SOF skills for commandos in the Afghan National Army. Afghan training has also included mentorship of SOF units. The training is being delivered under a program called Defence, Diplomacy and Military Assistance (DDMA), an effort to counter instability and insurgency through capacity building of local security forces, explained BGen Denis Thompson, commander of Canadian Special Operations Forces Command (CANSOFCOM) at a recent SOF conference in Kingston. It’s a tool the government may turn to more frequently has it seeks to build economic and security partnerships, especially in the western hemisphere, as it can produce significant impact for minimal investment. While capacity building has a long tradition in the special forces community – known as Security Force Assistance or Foreign Internal Defence in the United States, the practice dates back to World War II – it carries both old and new challenges. LCol John Vass, commander of CSOR, said recent missions have reinforced that DDMA requires a long-term commitment and puts a premium on cultural awareness and language capabilities. He also stressed the importance of “deploying teams that are JIMP aware,” that understand

Warrant Officer Tim MacCormac demonstrates how to place a charge to dispose an unexploded ordnance to Afghan National Army soldiers. Photo: Master Cpl. Rory Wilson

the construct of Joint, Interagency, Multinational and Public and the strategic implications that a tactical activity can have. Though DDMA missions are often political decisions, a friend today could be a foe tomorrow, so “determining appropriate host nation partners and forces does matter,” Vass said. “You need to know the long-term plan for long-term training and who will take ownership of it.”

Caring for the casualties of operational stress Canada may have drawn down its combat mission in Afghanistan but the effects of that mission will be felt for many years to come. Operational stress injuries do not necessarily disappear with time, Senator Romeo Dallaire told a conference hosted by the Canadian Institute on Military and Veteran Health Research in November. A survivor of post-traumatic stress himself from his tour as commander of the UN mission in Rwanda, Dallaire noted that nine of his 12 Canadian officers on that mission “crashed from operational stress disorder” and one committed suicide. “We are still picking up casualties from the first Gulf War, the Balkans, and Somalia,” he observed. If statistics hold true, more Canadian soldiers from the Afghanistan campaign may die from suicide than the 158 who died in theatre. “We need to crack the code that non-visual injuries are as significant as visual injuries,” Dallaire said. Evidence of just how critical a problem the Canadian Forces now faces is beginning to mount. In a study released by Maj Paul Sedge at the conference, findings showed that 23.1 percent of 792 members of the 2nd Battalion of the Royal Canadian Regiment who fought in Afghanistan in 2007 had been diagnosed with mental health problems; one in five were diagnosed with PTSD. Though much effort has been made to improve support for military personnel and their families, and to improve the care and support provided to veterans, the system needs a much better long-term care program for these types of injuries, Dallaire said. 6 DECEMBER/JANUARY 2012

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Reservist Sergeant Viviane Jean-Baptiste helps the DART medical team in Haiti. Photo: Sgt Bruno Turcotte.

A call to revisit the Reserves “I cannot imagine moving into the future without strong Reserves,” Vice Admiral Bruce Donaldson, Vice Chief of the Defence Staff, told the Standing Senate Committee on National Security and Defence in an appearance before it in October. The committee would appear to have taken him at his word, issuing a report in December on the future role of Canada’s 27,000 primary Reserves that argues for considerable reinvestment in a force that has been widely deployed on operations and will likely


sit rep

Anomaly, my Dear Watson? When an IBM computer named Watson beat a couple of Jeopardy champions in February, it opened possibilities for more than just trivia buffs and artificial intelligence aficionados. As Anand Paul, the global government industry research relationship manager for IBM Research’s Watson Labs, told a SecureTech audience in Ottawa this past fall, the victory demonstrated the ability of a machine to learn within a particular domain. “Watson can make the necessary connections between large sets of dynamic data,” he explained, and provide an answer that may not “be readily obvious.” Paul suggested the Deep QA software behind Watson has the potential to help police forces and intelligence agencies with scare resources sift through streams of data – including the 140 million daily Tweets and other social media postings – to link what otherwise might appear to be disconnected pieces of information. Among the more interested conference attendees was Vice Admiral Paul Maddison, Commander of the Royal Canadian Navy. He told delegates the Marine Security Operations Centres have been critical to Canada’s “federated, integrated domain awareness,” but key to that is the ability to identify anomalies among all the contacts at sea. “I can see applying Watson to maritime domain awareness,” he said.

Vice Admiral Paul Maddison

see greater demand as conflicts consistently call for skill sets “that Reservists can bring much more easily to the battlefield than the traditional military.” Donaldson describe a “conceptual framework” for the committee in which every Reservist would be expected to maintain a level of readiness to step up on short notice. In addition, some Reservists would need “to be at a higher level of readiness that can feed into a force package that is ready for deployment,” a model that he said the army was exploring. Aware that defence budget cuts may cut into the Reserves, the committee suggested in its report that government not diminish the size or strength of the Primary Reserve, and in fact should “continue growing it in line with the Canada First Defence Strategy target.” It proposed reducing the number of full-time Reservists to a baseline level and employing them “primarily in support of the Reserve structure,” but enhancing the number of training days and making Reserve pay “stable, predictable, non-discretionary and protected, with its own funding line.” With so much change in the past five years, the report also suggested the government restate the roles and missions of the Primary Reserve and DND “identify the operational tasks and measurable readiness benchmarks required for the Reserve, both for deployment abroad and at home.” Among future Reserve tasks, the committee recommended the CF consider specialized roles such as cyber defence or anti-terrorism. The report is available at www.parl.gc.ca.

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DECEMBER/JANUARY 2012 7


i iNSiDe INDUstRY AgustaWestland sees SAR in presidential parts

When the Canadian government acquired nine VH-71s in the summer of 2011 to provide spare parts for its fleet of CH-149 Cormorant search and rescue helicopters, it was hailed as a savvy business move. The United States, after all, was cancelling its presidential helicopter program and the VH-71, an updated version of the 149, offered Canada much needed parts for a relative bargain of $163 million. That decision also prompted some discussion at AgustaWestland (AW), the rotorcraft’s manufacturer. AW sold National Defence 15 SAR Cormorants in 2002 and, following a training accident, the fleet of 14 is now approaching 10 years of service and 50,000 hours of operating life. Furthermore, availability has been called “barely adequate,” according to a briefing note prepared for Defence Minister Peter MacKay. The Cormorant has been replaced by Griffons at CFB Trenton, allowing the 14 to respond to SAR incidents from Comox on Vancouver Island and Greenwood and Gander on the East Coast. AW has suggested that if it reconfigured seven of the nine VH-71s to SAR specifications and undertook a midlife upgrade of the current 14, similar to what the U.K. is doing with its fleet of Merlin helicopters, a variant of the EH 101, Canada would then have 21 to blanket the country. More important, the restoration of Cormorants to Trenton would allow the CF to provide SAR coverage to the Arctic without adding a northern base. As part of the VH-71 deal, the government also acquired an Air Transport Kit; if one Cormorant were kept on standby in the ATK, it could be loaded onto a C-17 in one hour, said Jeremy Tracy, AW’s head of region for Canada.

man turret manufactured by Oto Melara Finmeccanica. While there has been debate about tracked versus wheeled in this competition, Patrick Lier, vice president of sales and business development, said architecturally the wheeled vehicle is easier to protect and more cost effective in terms of fuel, spares and repairs. It’s also a mature vehicle with “all of the risk taken out of it,” he said. The French army has fielded about 250 of a 630 order in Afghanistan and Lebanon and survived IED strikes without a fatality. Mike Duckworth, executive vice president international affairs, said Nexter has adopted a new business model focused on exports that emphasizes partnering. If one of its CCV bids is successful, Bombardier Transportation will assemble the vehicles at its facility in Quebec while Raytheon Canada’s service and support division in Calgary will deliver the in-service support. Prevost Bus of Sainte-Claire will build the engines. The results of the CCV competition are expected this spring.

Find me a flight...into space

CCV program helps Nexter gain exposure Win or lose Canada’s Close Combat Vehicle competition, Nexter Systems will have increased its footprint in North America. The French company, which submitted two bids for the government’s performance evaluation program now underway at the U.S. Army’s Aberdeen test centre in Maryland, acknowledged it is demonstrating its combat-proven capability to more than just a Canadian audience – American evaluators will hopefully also take note. The two vehicles, the CCV-25 and the CCV-30, are based on Nexter’s VBCI wheeled 8x8 platform currently in use by the French army. One features a 25 mm one-man turret while the other carries a 30mm two8 DECEMBER/JANUARY 2012

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With Canada’s RADARSAT Constellation expected to receive government approval in 2012, and a possible investment in the U.S.-led Wideband Global Satellite program, space could feature prominently in the New Year. Canadian companies and agencies have carved out a unique position in a growing international market. Wary of tightening budgets, Steve MacLean, head of the Canadian Space Agency (CSA), told a recent summit hosted by the Aerospace Industries Association of Canada that space assets should be essential instruments of government infrastructure. Enhanced situational awareness through space-based capabilities, especially in the Arctic, is important to more than the military. But if Canadian companies are to continue developing high value technologies, they need platforms on which to showcase them. In a word, government’s primary role should be “fly,” said Iain Christie, president of Neptec Design. Whether the CSA has to beg, borrow or buy, it is vital it “find ways to get our stuff on board” space flights, he pleaded. Without that flight heritage, it is difficult to make the case for new technologies to international customers. Michael Pley of Com Dev International suggested the need for more collaboration among government, industry and academia to ensure long-term planning. He also urged government to be a “first user” of new technology. Several delegates suggested Canada’s space program is at a “crossroads,” but with a bright future if it makes the right investments. “We determine our own fate,” said David Schellenberg, president of Cascade Aerospace and the chairman of AIAC. “Let’s take full advantage of the stars being aligned.”


iNSiDe INDUstRY

INBrieF

i

KONGSBERG

IMP AEROSPACE has completed worked on the first of 10 CP140 Aurora aircraft to receive structural upgrades. The maritime surveillance aircraft are undergoing both a structural life extension program and a mission computer system upgrade. All 10 Auroras are expected to complete the $1.5 billion combined modernization program by 2014.

CEVA

The last two of Canada’s 17 CC-130Js rolled to the front of LOCKHEED MARTIN’S production line in Marietta in December. Canada has received 13 of the new Super Hercules and will receive the final four by mid 2012. The members of 442 Squadron stationed at CFB Comox were recognized in November for a daring cliff-side rescue of a B.C. hiker. The squadron was honoured with the Cormorant Trophy for Helicopter Rescue, an annual award presented by AGUSTAWESTLAND. BOMBARDIER AEROSPACE and THE NATIONAL RESEARCH COUNCIL confirmed a multi-year framework agreement that covers research, development and testing in areas of interest to both organizations, and will help Bombardier advance its research in aerodynamics, computational fluid dynamics, structures and materials, acoustics, multi-disciplinary optimization, aircraft interiors and electromagnetic interference. For the fourth year in a row, the Canadian Manufacturers & Exporters and the National Research Council recognized MARPORT DEEP SEA TECHNOLOGIES for developing innovative technologies. Marport was selected primarily for its AquaPix Synthetic Aperture Sonar that provides high-speed, high-resolution underwater imaging.

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NGRAIN has been awarded DND contracts to develop its Virtual Task Trainer solutions for the Canadian Army and the Royal Canadian Air Force to support instruction of complex theory of operations and maintenance procedures on the CC-138 Twin Otter aircraft, Field Heater, and Light-Armoured Vehicle III Differential. BOEING renewed a contract with MESSIER-DOWTY, part of the Safran group, to manufacture nose landing gear assemblies for the F/A-18E/F Super Hornet and EA-18G Growler, for approximately US$200 million. Messier-Dowty also provides Boeing with main and nose landing gear for the V-22 Osprey tiltrotor aircraft. KONGSBERG opened a new production facility in London under the name Kongsberg Protech Systems, Canada to produce advanced Remote Weapon Stations for the Canadian Forces and international markets.

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DECEMBER/JANUARY 2012 9


M MaritiMe

W

ell before and long after the navy’s new ships under the National Shipbuilding Procurement Strategy take to sea, many of their requirements will be assessed by the Canadian Forces Maritime Warfare Centre. From the current modernization of the Halifax Class frigates to the new Arctic offshore patrol ships and surface combatants, every ship in the Royal Canadian Navy undergoes evaluation in the centre’s sophisticated modeling and simulation facilities, first to determine its capabilities and later to validate and update its tactics. Drawing on the expertise of experienced sailors, defence scientists, and the larger science and technology community, Captain (N) William Quinn commands a centre he calls a tactical warfare think tank. The former commandant of the Canadian Forces Naval Operations School and commanding officer of HMCS Calgary spoke with editor Chris Thatcher about the CFMWC and its role in navy tactics and doctrine.

SHIP SHAPE

Warfare centre models Navy’s next generation

10 DECEMBER/JANUARY 2012

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MaritiMe M Q How has this warfare centre evolved from a maritime training school? We did not want to lose the tactical knowledge we had gained through WWII, so this place was designed to teach those tactical lessons. It started to evolve into a warfare centre of excellence during the ‘80s and ‘90s, but it’s only been in the last ten years, with the advances in modelling and simulation, that we’ve really taken on that role. I think it started when we received the new Halifax Class frigates and the updated Iroquois Class destroyers, which were quite a technological leap from our steam driven destroyers and escorts. We had new missile technologies, the SM2 standard missile and the Sea Sparrow, and we didn’t have a lot of experience with those kinds of systems. As with any new program when it starts out, there are bumps, and we experienced problems that we had to overcome. The modelling and simulation capability grew out of that. Initially, the technology was ahead of us. But we’ve developed the expertise to catch up and then get ahead of the technology, which is where I think we are today. The centre is different from many other military institutions because of the seniority of the workforce. We have very experienced and knowledgeable lieutenant commanders and commanders with a lot of operational experience who are real subject matter experts in certain areas of warfare. We also have a large civilian component, many retired military, who have become worldwide experts in anti-air, anti-submarine and anti-surface warfare.

Q How does the centre contribute to a new ship? Our main product is tactics. We have a robust modelling and simulation capability (M&S) and, based on what we think the threats are going to be, we use M&S to try new tactics or see how current tactics work. Compared to real world exercises M&S is cheap. We’ll do literally thousands and thousands of runs under all types of different conditions until we find a couple we think might work. And those we’ll test at sea with live assets. We’ll do data collection on the live test, and then reconstruct it here and compare it to the model that was used to prove the model is correct. Once we are happy with that, then we’ll make tactical recommendations. Our other product is force development advice. For example, the Statement of Requirements (SOR) is being developed for the Canadian Surface Combatant and we’re heavily involved with the Director of Maritime Requirements (Sea), the procurement guys developing the SOR, on a range of different capabilities.

We’ll provide that advice to the force development folks who will incorporate that into the SOR that will eventually become part of the bid process.

Q Take me through the process. At what stage does the centre become involved? At the beginning and the end. Pre-acquisition, when we are developing the SOR, all of the tactical requirements that will go into the surface combatant, for example, are looked at by us. When we say we need X number of guns that have this kind of capability to engage this kind of target doing this kind of speed in these kinds of ranges with these kinds of arcs of fire, all the models are simulated here. The SORs are based on M&S and our latest threat information. We’re not involved in the actual procurement at all. But once a platform or system is delivered, that’s when the test and evaluation process starts. We’re involved in the acceptance trials as an observer, advising on the process. We have a lot of expertise designing trials and operational tests. And once the new item is acquired, and then for its entire lifecycle, it will be tested continually. We’re always going back and trying our anti-ship missiles against a different type of threat, our torpedo counter measures against a different type of threat. Those tactics will continually evolve in response to the threat. It will go through the operational test and evaluation process so we fully understand its limitations and capabilities. Once it goes into operational deployment, we will sometimes do operational tests, which are larger scale tests not necessarily on a piece of kit but, for example, on how we do the entire anti-ship missile defence. So not just how a jammer such as RAMSES works against a missile but how our entire anti-ship defence tactic (hard and soft kill) works against that missile, what we call smart kill. If everything works well, the Maritime Warfare Tactical Authority, who is me, blesses the doctrine and says the tactic is good. We’re continually doing tactical development. There is always a cycle of ships being deployed, being tested, the results of tests being evaluated, and then the results fed back into more tactical development. Doctrine is constantly changing. Look at the pace at which computers are advancing. Those same computers are going into missile warheads, missile seeker heads, torpedo seeker heads and electronic warfare gear.

Q If the pace is changing so rapidly, how quickly do you have to revise doctrine? Typically it can take a long time for some of these lessons learned to get back in this process. Our tactical www.vanguardcanada.com

DECEMBER/JANUARY 2012 11


M Maritime Q What role do you play shaping NATO tactics and doctrine, and helping other navies? When it comes to the reconstruction of live firing missile events to determine their effectiveness, we are definitely world class. We do some things with reconstruction of events that no other countries do. There are two drivers: you want to have the best tactics because of the cost of failure; but the other is bang for the buck. We’re not the biggest navy in the world and we want to take advantage of all the technologies we have. That’s also a key part in our advice to procurement: we want to make sure we are getting value for dollar. If a company says its technology does X, then it actually does or, if it doesn’t, we understand what we’re getting and we’re a more informed buyer. We have lot of expertise in anti-ship missile defence – we’ve influenced how NATO navies tactically do that. We also have expertise in torpedo countermeasures because we put a lot of effort into modelling and live testing of different tactics, and we are the custodian for seven NATO tactical publications. There is much tactical doctrine – anti-surface, anti-air and anti-subsurface – that we have had a significant influence on. But a caveat: it’s a very cooperative environment in NATO. When doctrine is amended, it is a collaborative effort. We’ll have suggestions, but countries will accept or not accept according to their own needs and capabilities. We also link with other navies, especially the Four Eyes community (Australia, Canada, United States and United Kingdom), on new technology. We have quite an open forum of information exchange. We bring some things to the table that they don’t have, which gives us access to some things we don’t have. There is a lot of allied cooperation in tactical development that probably evolved from Sea Sparrow missile firings. doctrine takes a bit longer because there is a refresher cycle. But if we develop a new tactic, and we’ve done this recently, we will immediately send it out to the fleet and we will brief the Naval Operations School that teaches it to students. Twice a year I have my experts go to each coast and do tactical updates for the fleet. But when it comes to a critical tactic, we’ll send it out immediately; we can turn it around in hours if it’s a matter of changing a procedure.

Q That requires first-rate data, beyond modelling and simulation. That’s the importance of deployed ships – it’s key data for us too. You can only exercise so much, and you can’t really recreate the kind of stresses and overloading of information that a ship might get off Libya than when you’re doing a tactical exercise off of Halifax. When you send a ship where there are 30 other coalition warships and aircraft and UAVs flying around and conducting bombing strikes, the data is key to see stresses in a way that we could never have created. The feedback from the real world is vitally important. It’s very often a validation of our testing but it is sometimes a wake up call to say we’ve got to look at this because we never used the system with these many contacts before.

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Q Given the Navy’s involvement in PANAMAX and the government’s interest in Latin America, is there more cross-pollination with South and Central American countries?


Maritime M that realm a bit with C4ISR because that crosses all layers. But I wouldn’t be surprised if there was more demand. The thing I have found with M&S is that the more people are exposed to it, the more they realize the power of it. You can design it to do anything you want such as finding the optimal way of doing some operational task. You can do M&S to reduce procurement risk because you have a better idea of what you’re buying. As with any business, the challenge is capacity and resources. Everything comes with a cost.

Q If participation on exercises and operations is crucial to doctrine, how will aging ships and replacement gaps affect your ability to collect that key data?

We’ve done a lot of work with Central and South American countries. I was recently part of the delegation for the multilateral war game in Brazil, an annual game involving the U.S., Canada, Peru, Chile, Argentina, Brazil, Uruguay and now Mexico at the strategic operational level. When it comes to hard tactics, the kind of stuff that the warfare centre really develops, there is less sharing outside the Four Eyes community, certainly outside the NATO community, because of the nature of the security classifications. But there is a lot of cooperation with other nations at the strategic and operational level, things like the operational planning process, how we conduct exercises and organize task groups.

Q As defence budgets constrict, does the value of a warfare centre increase? Are you seeing greater demand at the strategic level? Computer time is relatively cheap. At some point you have to go through live testing to validate your models, but modeling and simulation can narrow down what you test live to such a degree that there are significant savings. We don’t usually stray into the operational and strategic level. Our focus is more at the tactical level, for current and future concepts. Although, we cross

It’s a challenge because there is a high demand for sea days for different things and it’s more difficult to get a ship to do what I’d like it to do than it was 10 years ago when we had more ships. I don’t make those decisions on the priorities of what our ships do, but I try and get as much out of it as I can. Every exercise we do we put a lot of effort into collecting all the data we can. So an exercise like the American’s Submarine Commander’s Course that we frequently participate in, we get an amazing amount of valuable tactical data out of that. Any exercise that we can plug into is a gold mine of data to improve our own M&S, test and evaluation, and our own tactics.

Q What do you see on the horizon for the next 5-10 years? Does anything in the Navy’s soon-to-be-released Horizon 2050 suggest new areas of emphasis for the warfare centre? The main threat of the war game in Brazil was a cyber attack on our system, and there is certainly work to be done there. There are all kinds of growing areas: unmanned vehicles is a growth area; naval fire support to forces ashore is an area we are starting to work on; there is always the at sea ballistic missile defence issue, the capabilities for ships to shoot down ballistic missiles that are aimed at carriers; amphibious type operations – are we going to develop a more amphibious type ability with the aim of having a more capable response for disasters or humanitarian relief? I can see us becoming involved in that. We need to get much more involved in the lessons learned process. That is something that we are doing now. We have something called the Maritime Warfare Authority, which we are reinvigorating, streamlining and making more effective over this next year. I think the army has been doing lessons learned exceptionally well, but they have had the pressure of losing people in Afghanistan. We don’t have the same capacity that they do but we are working toward it. We also have a knowledge management system the CF has mandated; we are trying to get reports out of filing cabinets and into the knowledge management system, which we’ve used to help prioritize our operational efficiencies. That’s a big growth area and something we need to get better at. We’ll do the collation of information and hopefully that will identify issues that perhaps we need to model and simulate.

www.vanguardcanada.com

DECEMBER/JANUARY 2012 13


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FroM coNtractorS to coaLitioNS: The lessons of operational support Canadian operational support Command (CANosCoM) might not garner the same limelight as its brethren in Canada Command, Expeditionary Force Command or special operations Forces Command, but few operations go far without it. Dubbed by some as the crown jewel in the nascent operational command structure, CANosCoM has seen a hectic 18 months of mission activation and closure operations, in addition to sustaining the longest operation since the Korean War. With 35 years of experience, MGen Mark McQuillan has seen many changes in how the Canadian Forces supports troops in expeditionary and domestic operations, including as commanding officer of the support element to the Canadian Contingent to NAto’s stabilization Force in Bosnia and more recently as Deputy Chief of staff for the Materiel Group. the commander of CANosCoM spoke with Vanguard about new capabilities and maintaining exibility. Excerpts of our conversation follow; for the complete interview see www.vanguardcanada.com.

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MGen Mark McQuillan (right) speaks with Sgt Steve Loranger (left foreground) and Cpl Christine Belanger (centre right) of the Operation Attention Theatre Activation Team. Photo: Rory Wilson


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Q What’s the most visible difference in how a mission like

I would say we have matured and better adapted to the environment. Based on the scenarios we face today, we probably have more tools available to us. Back when I was a commander of a national support element, I would have had a hundred percent military personnel conducting support. Today, we’ll have a combination of resources available, be it from military, coalition and contracted capability. For example, today we have the Canadian Contractor Augmentation Program (CANCAP), and we’ll use that tool to compliment or augment military capabilities as dictated by the operational environment within which we work.

lenges: bed down requirements, environmental assessments or engineering coordination for infrastructure builds; the ability to forward project, which involves movements coordination; communications links; and increasingly today, coordination of commercial contracting support. The capability to coordinate these functional requirements exists within CANOSCOM. To a certain extent, materiel management is still the backbone of what we do. From our depot systems across Canada, to being able to coordinate and provide the enabling pieces for structures, sustainment, movement in theatre, all of that exists within CANOSCOM. I’d like to think CANOSCOM has enabled operational commanders to be more flexible and responsive in doing their business. When you talk to the service chiefs and the commanders of CEFCOM and Canada Command, they clearly see us as an important enabler of their operations.

Q Are there specific capabilities introduced as a result of the

Q

Afghanistan is supported versus missions in, for example, the Balkans?

stand up of CANOSCOM that were not available before? I have seen a change in dynamic in how the Canadian Forces enables operations but I don’t know that there was one specific capability that has enhanced operational support. We bring together under one umbrella a range of tools to support a joint task force as it is deployed and sustained. I also have a reach back capability to the functional authorities – materiel accountability or IT infrastructure and others – to make sure there is a coordination of effort in supporting the deployed task force. I think that is the strength of the organization. Internal to CANOSCOM, we have some niche capabilities that are not quite as evident in other places. For instance, when you go into a relatively new theatre, invariably you come up with a range of chal-

When CANOSCOM was stood up, there was an emphasis on developing a lessons learned process. How has that evolved and are there some specific lessons you’ve adopted from recent missions? I think all organizations try to learn, but the military tries to institutionalize that process. CANOSCOM has a lessons learned cell to look at ongoing operations and enhance capability. And we have had success. Is it where I would like it to be? No, it probably still needs more maturing. One of the biggest changes I saw as I came into this job was the extent to which we needed to work with coalition partners. For instance, I’m involved at a strategic level with an organization called the Quadrilateral Logistics Forum, which involves us, the U.K., Australia and the U.S. As a logistics support comwww.vanguardcanada.com

DECEMBER/JANUARY 2012 15


L Logistics support munity we look at what we are doing in coalition operations with an aim to enhancing capabilities, whether it’s influencing NATO or just being more responsive from a national perspective. One of the areas we have looked at collectively is coalition contracting. In a place like Afghanistan, a good deal of goods and services delivery within ISAF is provided through contracting. So you need an overall framework to balance demand and ensure you are not overloading contractors or committing contract fratricide. We learned we needed to work together to develop a contract to support the Kandahar mission for things such as food and fuel. We’ve also looked at movement visibility. Afghanistan has some limiting factors in terms of transportation. With the myriad of countries involved in this type of mission, you become really conscious of how many aircraft you can land at an airfield at a given time, how to prioritize, manage and set conditions based on competing national priorities so we all achieve the desired end state.

Q

Are we seeing specialization by certain nations in delivering logistics support in a coalition environment? NATO operates and most coalition type deployments work under the principle that nations have to deploy with a level of independent capability to support their troops and assigned operations. There are certain classes of goods that have to remain a national responsibility, but there are commodities that can be provided from a shared perspective. Fuel management is one. While the U.S. may be a primary fuel consumer in an operation such as ISAF, there can be a shared oversight where fuel management is done from a NATO perspective. Additionally, while every nation has its own rules and regulations for contracting, they need to maintain their own expertise, but there will be levels at which we can do things together. As you start to do things better and smarter, people start to share information to the extent possible to generate efficiencies in the provision of operational support.

Q

You have gone through a period in the past 18 months of multiple mission activations and closures, from Haiti to the High North or the Middle East. What have you learned from those?

Theatre activation is about responding to the operational requirement, but there are some practical things that always need to be done: environmental surveys, setting baseline conditions for contracting, putting host nation agreements in place to allow us to temporarily stage or use facilities and/or use resources. We’ve developed and matured our capabilities in those areas. From a logistics perspective, we want to be effective in supporting the mission, but at the same time we want to be practical in what we do. When you set up a mission, you have to be responsive to the operational commander and your lines of communication – how you move things – have to be able to meet the time sensitivities during operations. We can execute planned events in which demands are considered in a logical, fluid and well managed process. But we also have to be able to respond to the urgent – humanitarian assistance or disaster relief such as occurred in Haiti – and in those circumstances it is resources-at-hand, and the time sensitivity of response is a lot more critical. Theatre activation and bed down becomes very much merged with the initial phases of providing assistance.

Q

Have you created a rapid response capability, the ability to plug in support functions depending on the requirement? Trying to understand with clarity what is required on the ground in a time sensitive environment is not always possible. For Haiti, we understood the earthquake and the devastation, but not the extent to which sea ports and airports and transportation routes were affected. So you do your best military analysis and try to be pragmatic in how you respond. The military likes to ensure we won’t fail so we tend to apply the full scale of resources and ensure we deploy with the full range of tasks to meet all eventualities. We can kick things out relatively quickly. On disaster assistance, there is a high readiness capability in the DART and we have a support component piece of that. The CF also has plans for noncombat evacuations and major air disasters, and we designate capabilities within CANOSCOM to be able to support those.

Q

Have you had to introduce new skill sets into CANOSCOM, information communications technology skills for example? Effective communications are essential to all operations. To be honest we’re probably not as good as we need to be in that area. The Joint Signals Regiment provides that link of strategic to operational communications. The army, navy and air force have all developed platforms and capabilities, and they have communications suites that make them work in synch. There is a challenge, though, when we link those service platforms with corporate enterprise systems back in Canada; at times that can stretch our capability. The Joint Signals Regiment has both a software challenge at times and a hardware challenge. It is an area that is known to us but we get great support from the Information Management Group. Like your iPhone, technology changes and it needs to be updated continually and you really have to stay on top of it. As CANOSCOM stood up, we got relatively good in quick order with theatre activation. Now, as we do theatre deactivation,

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Logistics support L Q

we are finding that there are certain parts of what we do that need to be better defined. We have regulations for disposal, donations of materiel, salvage of materiel, but when you consider the magnitude of the closure in Afghanistan, it’s a whole other dimension. We ceased combat operations in July and the government required that we be out by December and there was a mountain of materiel that the Mission Transition Task Force had to move. So we had to ensure that the right policy guidelines, decision processes and planning were already in place to do that. We’ve learned that in some of those areas we had to get a little bit better. Those policy changes also have to make sense with our doctrine. Our doctrine should reflect how we do business today and if it doesn’t, then we need to make recommendations to change what we do. For example, when we come together as a joint task force, we designate a joint force commander with elements of army, navy and air force. As an enabler, we believe there should be something called a joint task force support component. We employed that concept when we undertook the security for the Olympics – all support elements were placed under the commander of the joint task force support component – and we have also validated this concept on a smaller scale when we supported Canada Command with northern operations. The intent is to ensure we maximize the support both in terms of effect and efficiency in support of a deployed task force.

Q

You’ve mentioned the increased role of private contractors. How is this managed? Initially when we go into a theatre, we will send a combined team of military and civilians from ADM MAT (Procurement Services) to look at a range of local goods and services. We’ve found that as you provide more contracting in theatre, you need to provide the task force commander with contracting oversight so he has the expertise on the ground to spend money wisely and effectively. In Afghanistan, there was a contracting oversight coordination centre to assist the task force commander. A second contract capability is the CANCAP program. This has been in place for a number of years and is really an augmentation capability. There are a range of functions that we will put into a contract and then ask industry to compete on; we will then pay a certain amount to have that readiness package available if there is an operation in which we are required to augment the military component that is going in.

Do you require new tools?

RFID is a capability we keep on pushing. We’d like to have a scan capability as we send materiel into theatre. Warehouse management tools would help task orient the volume of demands that come through our depots. BGen Lamarre, commanding the Mission Transition Task Force, developed a common operating picture, software that allowed him to manage all the transitions and maintain visibility on what needed to come back in what priority. We keep pushing the envelope on those types of technologies, but they have to be forward deployable and able to operate in austere environments. So some technologies in our supply systems and maintenance systems need to be “ruggedized” in order to move them forward. We’re also exploring a logistics hub concept so that if we need to project and sustain, we have certain nations around the world willing to support us.

Q

How have the Chinooks, C-17s and new Hercs change the way you operate? I’m a really strong supporter of the air force in terms of strategic lift capability. We used to provide strategic airlift primarily from commercial means to meet our needs. Having an in-house capability of C-17s to enable operations has been huge. Helicopters are more a tactical level resource but in simple terms we’ve been able to take troops off the ground and minimize the risk to individuals. But because of volume and size, we still end up doing things such as combat logistics patrols. And that’s another lesson learned. When I was a junior officer you had a linear battlefield and a rear area that was relatively safe. Today, the support community has to be much more skilled, not just in their technical competencies but also in their field competencies. When I look at the average soldier today, their intelligence, confidence, abilities and field craft is much stronger; they have a level of field competency and experience that is head and shoulders above what the average trooper would have known back when I was a commanding officer of a battalion.

Q

What for you are the keys to logistics support for the future? I think the key is flexibility. If I’ve learned anything, you have to be able to respond on very short notice, and to respond to multiple demands. The Canada First Defence Strategy has six different types of missions it asks the CF to be able to respond to, and it is not good for a support guy to go into the operational commander and say, “sorry, we can’t do that.” So I need to ensure we have the flexibility to respond to a number of different missions. We need the competencies for very risky environments, and in addition be prepared to transition to contracted solutions and to work in a coalition environment. And that means maintaining relationships, developing competencies and ensuring you remain flexible to meet the operational need.

www.vanguardcanada.com

DECEMBER/JANUARY 2012 17


L Logistics support

by chris thatcher

MISSION CLOSURE Parting thoughts on drawing down KAF What’s the secret to packing up and shipping out a small city? Planning. And lots of it. Long before BGen Charles Lamarre landed at the Kandahar Airfield (KAF) in July of this year as commander of the final rotation of Operation Athena, he spent almost 18 months planning and rehearsing how to dismantle and stow every vehicle, billet and bullet. Kandahar might not have resembled an episode of Hoarders, but after almost six years in that theatre the Canadian Forces had accumulated the equivalent of over five million square feet of building material across 18 compounds and 30,000 tones of vehicles, to say nothing of the kilometres of wiring and IT infrastructure, a hospital and even a Tim Horton’s. All of it had to be counted, categorized, decontaminated – no small measure when dealing with sand – and then prioritized and packed, mostly into some 2700 sea containers, and trucked 1600 kilometres to the port of Karachi. 18 DECEMBEr/JANuArY 2012

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Unlike the theatre in Haiti – stood up rapidly in response to an earthquake – or the staging area in the United Arab Emirates – closed with little warning following a disagreement with the UAE government – Lamarre and his team had “the luxury of time to plan.” In 2010, they knew that combat operations would cease by July 2011 and they would then have six months in which to close the theatre. But it wasn’t without its complications. Mission closure is normally a logistics task, led by Canadian Operational Support Command. However, because Kandahar remained an active theatre and part of Lamarre’s responsibility as commander of the Mission Transition Task Force (MTTF) involved transferring materiel to the Force’s training mission near Kabul, the operation remained under the authority of Canadian Expeditionary Force Command.


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He took a similar approach in preparing to ship home tanks and other fighting vehicles with add-on armour. “We got some combat arms guys to work with our vehicle technicians to make sure we had the assembly lines to remove the add-on armour, clean it, inspect it and send it home. We actually set up a specific exercise in Edmonton and showed them the processes of how to do this. The first time we took the armour off one of our LAVs, it took three days. By the end of the exercise, they — BGen Charles Lamarre were doing it in three quarters of a day.” A secondary aspect of vehicle cleaning also included training a team to remediate any soil contaminated by fuel and oil spills. To prepare to dismantle the many temporary hangers used to house aircraft and aviation elements at KAF, his team first set up and then took down actual hangers in an exercise “so we could get into that team building rhythm.” “Ultimately, we had a host of exercises that brought us up to speed on how we were going to do mission closure,” Lamarre said. “Land Force Doctrine Training System adjusted their exercises to suite our specific mission. As part of the series of exercises, they validated my headquarters to make sure we were able to handle any sort of eventualities involving conflict, because we did have force protection elements and we had to do some convoys to bring in materiel. Second, though, they looked at what challenges we would be facing in terms of processing very large amounts of vehicles and materiel and made sure we did so in an environment that covered strategic lines of communication, such as with various Afghan ministries.” Once in theatre, however, reality soon intruded. The Pakistan border closed periodically in response to U.S. attacks on insurgents in Pakistan territory, threatening the overland route to the port of Karachi and the thriving local trucking industry that has sprung up around KAF and other ISAF bases across the country. (As Vanguard went to press, several containers remained stuck in Afghanistan because of a Pakistani blockade of some routes.) And part way through the mission, the destination of the nightly flights of C-17s, Hercules and contracted Antonov aircraft switched from an intermediary staging terminal in Cyprus and to a new base in Kuwait.

“We had the ability to gather the team and start planning this in early 2010 and, as a result, we were able to go through a very deliberate process of how we would do mission closure.”

“Right from the word go, both CEFCOM and OSCOM were involved in the planning,” he said. “We had the ability to gather the team and start planning this in early 2010 and, as a result, we were able to go through a very deliberate process of how we would do mission closure.” Like many things in the military, the task began with a committee. Co-chaired by OSCOM and CEFCOM and given the acronym MIB – Materiel and Infrastructure Board, not Men in Black – the committee included representation from the army, air force, navy and special forces as well as from the Assistant Deputy Minister branches of Materiel, Information Management and Infrastructure and Environment. From quarterly meetings, the committee soon progressed to a monthly gathering examining everything that was known to be in theatre. “That gave us the ability to create a specific instruction that addressed all of the materiel by class and type,” Lamarre said. His planning headquarters also had the luxury of meeting with individual stakeholders to establish their specific requirements. As an example, Lamarre said meetings with the army’s staffs for operations, land force readiness, logistics, land equipment, and projects and management helped to determine “which vehicles were needed where, in what sequence, for what purpose. And that drove the priority of shipment out of theatre. In many cases, they’re going back to units that are going to go on the road to high readiness.” Planning was soon followed by preparation, a training program well beyond basic soldiering skills. “Because we had so many specialized technicians as part of this task force, we sent guys off to get specialized skill sets,” Lamarre explained. “For example, we knew we were going to be relying on a significant air bridge through our C-17s and other large body aircraft, so the movement company and the soldiers that make that up in some instances went down to Trenton and trained on the C-17s.”

human connection With all the focus on materiel, it is easy to forget that mission closure also includes the complex task of closing local human relationships. Over the course of the six-year mission, Op Athena issued approximately 7000 contracts and part of Lamarre’s assignment included establishing a cell to review every one. “We www.vanguardcanada.com

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L Logistics support checked to make sure that we didn’t have anything outstanding that could some back and cause us grief, so proper verification and closure.” The MTTF maintained approximately 300 active contracts ranging from vehicle rentals to disposal services and fuel, all of which had to be closed off in the final months. As was the case with his predecessors, Lamarre established a strong relationship with BGen Ahmad Habibi, commander of the Afghan National Army 1st Brigade 205 Corps, and as the task force identified materiel still useful for a military but not worth returning to Canada, it was transferred to 205 Corps. Working with the U.S.-created Humanitarian Assistance Yard, a surplus materiel depot designed to help battalion commanders in Regional Command South deliver specific items to local villages to assist in operating schools, shelters or other community projects, MTTF provided such things as canvas from tents. “That can assist not only security forces but also Afghan NGOs and battle space owners as they try to convince villagers to stay on the right path,” he said.

Lesson sharing

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Before deploying, the mission headquarters also made a point of speaking with Dutch colleagues who had recently closed down their Afghan mission. Like the Canadians, the Dutch used a combination of planes and overland truck routes through Pakistan to move out materiel. “We talked about issues and challenges,” Lamarre confirmed. “Things were being attacked, fuel specifically, so they lost a couple of sea containers. So tracking and visibility was very important to be able to say quickly what was in those sea containers. We already had a plan to ensure asset-tracking visibility, but it reinforced our thinking. Each time we see an ally doing something well, we shamelessly steal their good ideas. I think we benefited from the Dutch and what our British colleagues did coming out of Iraq. We also benefited from what the Americans did coming out of Iraq, their first tranches. Interestingly, we’re getting the reverse knock on the door – they are looking to us and asking the same kinds of questions.” While OSCOM has a permanent lessons learned team, Lamarre created his own cell specifically to capture the lessons of what was the largest mission closure since the Korean War. “At the end we’ll put out a consolidated lessons report, a how-to for mission closure. And we are also looking at establishing the underpinnings of doctrine for mission closure. We have access to a whole number of documents from experiences we’ve had closing down other theatres, but because of the common threads with our allies, it would probably be worthwhile to put together one doctrinal publication at a NATO level.” As for the lessons he’d impart to others, Lamarre said the most important remains planning. “If you have the luxury of early planning, then you have the chance to bring together your stakeholders. Everybody has input into mission closure. It’s vehicles and materiel but also information management, the environment, contracts, and communications infrastructure and telephony. You need to get everybody together and sequence how you are going to do your business. And once you get into execution, you have to be ready to react to change. Finally, don’t disregard strategic communications. As you are exiting or transitioning, you need to be conscious about the people you’re leaving behind. If you can assist them as you’re drawing down, it is time well spent.”


Unmanned systems U

by Chris Thatcher

Unmanned systems poised for underwater breakthrough

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arrell Dexter had every reason to smile. Just weeks before, Irving Shipbuilding of Halifax had won the rights to negotiate with the federal government to building the Navy’s $25 billion future combat fleet, and now he was standing before another defence audience to talk about a sector showing strong potential. Unmanned systems – land, air or sea – will never match the dollars generated by the shipbuilding industry in Atlantic Canada, but the Premier of Nova Scotia couldn’t help not notice the sector’s rapid innovation and growth in only a few short years: “We’re investing future money in future jobs,” he said. Over the course of a warm early November week in Halifax, Unmanned Systems Canada drew a modest but diverse audience to its ninth annual conference. Like the industry it represents, the association has seen steady growth as the applications for unmanned systems gain acceptance. While presentations on the air side highlighted mission success by Herons, Predators, ScanEagles and Global Hawks and speculated about the next generation of Mantis, Talarion and Telemos, on the marine side an intriguing consensus was emerging: underwater vehicles are primed for a giant leap forward. Like the unmanned aerial vehicles half a decade ago that faced a sceptical aviation community and had to prove their indispensable value on missions, underwater systems have finally overcome much of the initial resistance from within the submariner community and are finding a receptive audience across navies. Rear-Admiral Dave Gardem, commander of Maritime Forces Atlantic, is one believer. In a keynote address, he pointed to the steady rise of UAVs from a handful in the first Gulf war to thousands by the end of the current Iraq war. Much of that growth was driven by a “clear and present” need for more information, something navies are also demanding. But with 85 percent of bandwidth on most ships currently being used for enterprise systems, “there will never be enough cable,” he said. “We need to use technology to pull information.” To improve situational awareness, especially in the Arctic, he suggested both underwater and aerial vehicles could help deliver a much more complete picture than is available at present. He also

argued for the use of underwater vehicles at strategic “choke points” in the Arctic. The two biggest challenges, he said, were the human interface with the systems and their data streams, and the regulations that currently prohibit military surveillance over domestic waters, a challenge that requires a broader whole-ofgovernment approach to domain Rear-Admiral Dave Gardem awareness. As a next step in this process, Gardem said HMCS Charlottetown would be the first Canadian frigate to deploy with an unmanned aerial vehicle in its arsenal when it heads back to the Middle East in January – the bird was later confirmed to be the Boeing ScanEagle, developed by Insitu – while HMCS St. John’s would be testing concepts of operations for UAVs in the north when it next deploys to the Arctic. Though both operations involve aerial vehicles, underwater vessels may not be far behind. “Underwater vehicles are ready for prime time,” said Dr. Rand LeBouvier, a retired U.S. navy captain and now head of government and military business development for Bluefin Robotics. He noted that it took 10 years of experience and experimentation to see the level of maturation now evident in the UAV industry, and underwater systems are poised to make similar gains. However, if the ‘aha’ moment for UAVs was war, he believes that moment for underwater systems will be commercial adoption. But that won’t happen unless navies demonstrate their utility, and right now most systems are “sitting on shelves.” “The future is commercial” and if commercial sectors do not take advantage of gains made by the military, “the military [sector] will not have a future,” he said of all unmanned systems. Underwater vehicles face some unique challenges, notably communications, so they “have to be very autonomous” with few requirements for reach back to an operator, LeBouvier noted. On aerial vehicles, platforms have driven sensors; underwater, “we want sensors pushing this world.” And that should give small companies an edge, he added. What does success look like? Look no further than Canada’s use of an autonomous underwater vehicle to help determine the foot of the North American continental shelf in the western Arctic as part of Project Cornerstone. www.vanguardcanada.com

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Industry

by Richard Bray

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London growing into Land Force hub

ilitary shipbuilding has naturally concentrated on either coast and significant aviation sectors have sprung up in Winnipeg and Montreal. When it comes to ground vehicles, though, London, Ontario has quietly become a thriving hub. There are about 40 companies in the London defence-manufacturing cluster, employing more than 12,000 people, and armoured vehicle manufacturer General Dynamics Land Systems - Canada (GDLS-C) sets the pace. “We are a significant presence here in London,” said Ken Yamashita, the company’s corporate affairs manager. “With 2,300 employees, we are one of the largest firms in London.” GDLS-C has deep roots in the city. It received its first order for Light Armoured Vehicles, or LAVs, in 1977 and since then it has sold 9,000 vehicles to customers around the world. “As Diesel Division General Motors Canada, we were in the heavy equipment business, supplying locomotives, buses and mining trucks and then evolved into a major defence contractor.” (The company was called GM Defense when General Dynamics acquired it in 2003.) With two national rail lines, an international airport and access to three major highways, London offers fast access to Toronto in one direction and the United States in the other. Proximity to U.S. army development centres in Warren, Michigan is particularly advantageous. In fact, as Paul Bergqvist, chief operating officer of Armatec Survivability, said, “we are closer to and have more interaction with people in Warren than we do with people in Ottawa.” Founded in 1999, Armatec is a homegrown London success story. The company sells its survivability products to armed forces around the world. “I think it is exceptionally healthy that there is a cluster within the area. I think there are areas where various companies can work together, even though we are often in competition against each other. The benefits certainly outweigh any negatives,” Bergqvist said. One specific benefit he points to is a yearly London conference specific to light armoured vehicles – the Light Armoured Vehicle User Nation Group – that brings together people from all the countries that operate General Dynamics LAVs. 22 DECEMBER/JANUARY 2012

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With the November announcement of a 30,000 square foot production facility, Kongsberg Protech Systems (KPS Canada) clearly intends to build on London’s advantages. The company employs 16 people, and it will produce advanced remote weapon stations for the Canadian Forces, as well as for world markets. “Having a defence sector established in London is very convenient because it can make logistics much less complicated and expensive,” said Jørn Buø, president of KPS Canada. “One of the benefits of having the facility in London is that it provides a short distance between the established supplier base and customer networks. This has the added benefit of attracting the competencies we need in all facets of business. Where there are several defence related companies located in the same geographical region, it often leads to greater job creation.” Fortunately, the educational institutions to fill those jobs are close by. Fanshawe College hosts the Centre for Applied Transportation Technologies, which includes the Aviation Centre of Excellence. The National Research Council’s Centre for Automotive Materials and Manufacturing is located in London, while the University of Western Ontario (UWO) will build a new International Composites Research Centre next year. Many Fanshawe and UWO graduates work in London’s defence businesses. “As a company with 260 employees we have at least 40 engineers,” Bergqvist said. “Interestingly, when people ask how many of these are [from] the area, I would say that probably 32 or 33 of them are local employees. These are young engineers who came up through UWO and Fanshawe and we do various sponsorship programs with Western and we take co-op students as well, so we have benefited from that.” London Machinery Inc. (LMI), a long-established manufacturer of concrete mixers, is now part of Oshkosh Corporation, which manufactures military vehicles. Robert Monchamp, LMI’s general manager, said his company’s facilities give Oshkosh a superior manufacturing asset in the region. “One of the advantages of the London area is the established, highly skilled work force we presently have, which we will lever-


Industry

2

age and expand for the Tactical Armoured Patrol Vehicle (TAPV) and Medium Support Vehicle System (MSVS) programs. We are pursuing these programs with Oshkosh Defense and GDLS-C.” Longchamp called the London area a natural fit for increased defence sector investment. “Our teammate in the TAPV and MSVS programs, General Dynamics Land Systems, is already here,” he said. “In addition to our current workforce, we would expand by utilizing additional local talent in support of these new programs. In fact, the TAPV and MSVS programs would allow us to double our workforce.” Yamashita also acknowledged the skill across the region. “As far as our business goes, one thing that would surprise people is that we actually have more engineers than we have people on the production floor. Most people think of us as a manufacturing plant but we do a lot of engineering and design work, everything from modeling and simulation work to systems integration to testing and design.” The GDLS-C manufacturing capability includes a state-of-the-art manufacturing facility with laser cutters, robotic welders and modern machining centres. “Sheets of ballistic steel come in one end of our building and a completed vehicle comes out at the other end.” With October’s formal announcement that GDLS-C won the contract for the implementation phase of the government’s LAV III upgrade project, the company and its London employees will be busy for years to come. The $1.064 billion contract will upgrade and extend the lifespan of 550 LAV IIIs until 2035. Though London may be an emerging ground vehicle hub, every region of the country will benefit from projects such as the LAV upgrade. Big defence contracts require the prime contractors to agree to Canada’s Industrial and Regional Benefits (IRB) policy, which obligates them to create Canadian economic activity equal to 100 percent of the contract value. They are also encouraged to spread the work across Canada. “We have been involved in doing IRBs for over 20 years, so it has become the way we do business. We don’t sit down and ask, what can we do about IRBs in this situation? It is a natural outcome of what we do,” Yamashita said. GDLS-C may manufacture and assemble vehicle hulls in London, but virtually everything else is bought elsewhere. “As a result, we have developed a coastto-coast supplier base of over 400 Canadian companies located in every province.”

I

3

4

1: Kongsberg Protech Systems ribbon cutting: John Hannaford, Canadian Ambassador to Norway; Joe Fontana, Mayor of London; Joe Preston, MP Elgin-Middlesex-London; Jorn Buo, president, Kongsberg Protech Systems Canada; Egil Haugsdal, president, Kongsberg Protech Systems (Norway); Else Berit Eikeland, Norwegian Ambassado to Canada; The Honourable Chris Bentley, Minister of Energy. 2: A LAV on a training mission in Wainwright. 3: Egil Haugsdal of Kongsberg Protech Systems and John Ball of General Dynamics Land Systems Canada. 4: A Kongsberg remote weapons station

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DECEMBER/JANUARY 2012 23


D Defence Major/Padre Steve Moore,

CD, PhD, is a Canadian Forces Chaplain and a visiting Research Fellow with Saint Paul University in Ottawa.

Religious leader engagement:

M

ilitary leaders have acknowledged the strategic merit of building rapport and establishing cooperation with the religious segment of society as critical to the accomplishment of mission mandates. Under the authority of commanders, chaplains can contribute to meeting operational objectives through engaging religious leaders and their faith group communities. As of 24 June 2011, the Army Capabilities Development Board endorsed Religious Leader Engagement (RLE) as a new capability under development, advancing its formation from the concept phase to that of design. Based upon JIMP, the army descriptor of the Comprehensive Approach, RLE sees chaplains engaging leaders of religious communities within the “public space” of indigenous populations. Networking, partnering and in some instances peacebuilding, RLE advances what BGen Jim Simms, Chief of Staff Land Strategy, identifies as essential to the Comprehensive Approach: it is “about people, organizations and relationships – building understanding, respect and trust...cultivat[ing] involvement by key non-military actors.”

Drivers of conflict

The primary defining characteristic of terrorist activity today is the religious imperative. Since the early 1990s the only phenomenon to outdistance the increase in numbers of terrorist groups has been the steady growth in the percentage of these groups that hold to religious extremism as their driving force. Today’s unprecedented co-optation of religion as a means of deepening existing cultural and political fault lines aids in fueling the justification of militancy and terrorism, embracing violence as a divine duty or sacramental act. Holding to markedly different notions of legitimization and justification than their secular counterparts, these organizations indulge without compunction in greater bloodshed and destruction than terrorist groups with solely a political agenda. Adding to the mix are religious authorities, who, according to Pauletta Otis, “with their incendiary language, contribute to the congealing of adversarial identity markers, exacerbating the polarization of communities even more.” In such instances, the impressionable and uninformed come to experience religion as a combination of misinterpreted sacred texts imparted via clerics claiming to speak for the divine. Such sacralizing – a veneer of religiously sanctioned dictums to rationalize aggression – becomes a powerful inducement to engage in violence against rival ethnoreligious groups. In recent decades religious violence has become particularly aggressive and relentless mainly due to a strategy of elevating reli24 DECEMBER/JANUARY 2012

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A commander’s new weapon

gious images to the realm of divine struggle, thus creating in the minds of ardent followers the specter of cosmic war. Harnessing such emotive themes is the mainstay for many waging worldly political battles. Today, extreme religious expression has given terrorism remarkable power through spiritualizing violence. In describing the future security environment, defence analyst Peter Gizewski rightly intuits religious belief as an intensifying factor of contemporary conflict. He states, “recent experience suggests that parties driven by ethno-nationalist/separatist, religious and quasi-religious beliefs and causes may undertake and prosecute conflict with a degree of purpose and intensity that confounds material-based and generally Western notions of rational action.”

Religious peacebuilding Paradoxically, although exploitive leaders frequently appeal to religious identity to stir ethnic and tribal division, religion may also be invoked as a means of transcending differences and unifying rival tribes. In this vein, there is a growing body of literature emerging around religious and strategic peacebuilding. It is not inconsequential that a number of the organizations calling for greater religious involvement in resolving conflict are secular in orientation. One such example bears mentioning. In their recent publication, Religion, Conflict & Peacebuilding, USAID states, “inattention to religious identities or to the views and aspirations of religious leaders may result in mischaracterizations about what the conflict is actually about or how likely it is to become violent.” The document further underscores the undeniable influence religious leaders have within their communities as well as the integrity and authenticity of


Defence D religious themes and organizations in the midst of conflict. Religious leader engagement factors well into operational initiatives as a subset of key leader engagement (KLE), resonating with the emphasis of civic engagement within theatres of operation. In recent years the JIMP construct has emerged as the principal strategic lens through which to view the complexities of the operational environment known as the Comprehensive Approach. Offered in capsule form here, “J” represents Joint or the combined nature of operations; “I” stands for Interagency, the wholeof-government collaborating in nation building efforts; “M” or Multinational speaks to international will – nations coming together under the auspices of the UN, NATO or other coalitions

chaplains networking among local religious leaders more intentionally, establishing communication and engendering trust. Religious area analysis will be one of the skills chaplains will bring to theatres of operation, affording commanders greater insight into the religious life of their area of operations. As members of key leader engagement teams, chaplains will converse with the religious leaders present. Such authentic engagement facilitates dialogue where, over time, genuine needs of the surrounding communities may be identified leading to more intentional partnering with CIMIC or other government departments/agencies, NGOs, etc. Such program development serves as a crucial link in the security-development nexus.

and bringing to bear all of their combined resources; and “P” or Public domain includes a wealth of organizations and activities, the most consequential of which are indigenous populations. Land Forces newly released Counter-Insurgency Operations manual states, “In all cases, the indigenous population is the primary centre of gravity because no insurgency can survive amidst the hostile terrain of an unreceptive public.” It is no coincidence that charismatic religious leaders are categorized as having the capacity to shape moral opinion in the public domain – significant centres of gravity within local populations. In societies where western influence is limited, religious communities remain prominent in community life, and, in some instances, in government. RLE stands as an enhanced capability for chaplains. Religious leaders in their own right, more than any other contingent member, have a natural rapport with their local counterparts. Civic engagement among more tolerant religious leaders and their faith group communities offers a means of accessing a large sector of society that may be apprehensive of “western” approaches. Those of tolerant voice are faith group leaders – community leaders – often desirous of moving beyond conflict. Known as “middle-range actors,” they enjoy the confidence of the grassroots while moving freely at higher levels of leadership within their own communities.

In time, more seasoned chaplains will be equipped to initiate peacebuilding activities. Situations do arise when religious leaders of tolerant voice express a desire to transcend conflict. Chaplains have been known to facilitate intercommunal dialogue across ethnic boundaries. Inter-faith events and, in some instances, collaborative activities in development have resulted, creating greater cooperation and the easing of tensions. It is the repeated acts of cooperation in achieving common instrumental goals that sees greater trust emerge, an indispensable element of reconciliation. Such cooperation among local religious leaders and their communities over the long-term may function as “shock absorbers,” preventing the manipulation or abuse of religion to escalate conflict or tensions. The peacebuilding activities of chaplains among estranged religious communities may be described as conflict transformation. Discerning superordinate goals – achieving together what could not be accomplished alone – pertaining to community needs goes to the heart of joint activities. Continual consultation with Command is imperative with such initiatives. Selecting the appropriate shared project is critical if such intercommunal cooperation is to be transformative. Program parameters and funding capabilities must fall within mission objectives, affording both continuity and long-term sustainability if such initiatives are to be effectual and credible. Through intercommunal cooperation of this nature, an identity more inclusive of the other has occasion to take root, precipitating greater integration among communities. In such an atmosphere, conflict is transcended, new narratives are written and the healing of memory begins.

Conflict transformation Chaplain Branch leadership is presently implementing training that will prepare deploying chaplains to engage religious leaders and their communities on a number of levels. In concurrence with Command directives and mission goals, future operations will see

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DECEMBER/JANUARY 2012 25


E Edge of Tech Lynn Capuano is a writer with Defence R&D Canada.

Consortium to drive medical countermeasures Every type of work has its unique tools and equipment developed specifically to protect employees from the hazards of the job at hand. For many occupations, protection focuses on gear designed to prevent external injury to the body, such as construction workers’ hard hats and steel-toed boots or professional hockey players’ protective helmets and body gear. For members of the Canadian Forces (CF) and first responders to natural or accidental catastrophes or acts of terrorism, such external physical protection addresses only part of the safety and security equation. CF personnel and first responder teams of police, firefighters, paramedics, and humanitarian aid workers must perform extraordinary duties in some of the most extreme environments and hazardous conditions imaginable. Whether on the battlefield or within a disaster zone, an invisible layer of danger may exist in the form of chemical, biological, or radiological (CBR) threats. As an agency of National Defence, Defence Research and Development Canada (DRDC) supports the Surgeon General to prepare for, protect from, and mitigate the results of such threats through research, development, and delivery of effective medical countermeasures (MedCMs), which can include vaccines, drugs and diagnostic equipment. Some MedCMs are given prior to entering a danger zone and others are designed to neutralize or reduce harm caused by exposure to agents present in the operational environment or as a result of intentional release by an adversary. One such area of major concern is finding countermeasures against nerve agents, some of which can be fatal within minutes of exposure. For more than 35 years, Canada has led and conducted research on HI-6, a promising antidote that provides superior effectiveness against a broad range of nerve agents. The CF has chosen it as its lead nerve agent MedCM. Since the early 1990s, defence personnel from several nations, including Canada, have relied upon an auto-injector containing oxime HI-6 for immediate treatment of chemical agent exposure. Although approved for this special use, HI-6 is still undergoing safety and effectiveness testing and DRDC Suffield and its partner, UGM Engineering of Toronto, are investigating an intravenous version for public security use. In today’s post-9/11 environment, rapid development of new MedCMs to counter known and emerging threats continues to be a priority across the world. One clear example of a challenge to international readiness to stop a major public health threat was the successful handling of the global pandemic influenza outbreak of 2009. 26 DECEMBER/JANUARY 2012

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Despite the urgency and vital need for MedCMs, there are no short cuts to placing them in the hands of medical practitioners. Consider, for example, that a medicine dispensed routinely at any neighbourhood pharmacy is the one victorious candidate out of perhaps several hundred that were originally researched, tested and approved, often internationally, over a typical 10- to 15-year period. Not only are long lead times necessary for such multidisciplinary research, most MedCMs that address chemical, biological or radiological threats cannot be entered into the usual Health Canada process of approvals for clinical use. Many MedCMs address situations for which there is no known counterpart in general medicine, requiring a different development and approval process. Of course, in life-or-death situations, both DND and the Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC) can be authorized under a special program to deploy MedCMs still waiting approval. The successful and timely development of MedCMs demands coordinated national and international action, given the costs, complexity and regulatory requirements that exist between countries. “There is no strategy or mechanism to complete the safety and effectiveness assessment of medical countermeasures that are so very important to national and public security,” Dr. Kent Harding, chief scientist at DRDC Suffield, points out. To remedy this, in 2009, DRDC and its national partners, which include DND, Health Canada and PHAC, began working on a medical countermeasures consortium concept to support MedCMs development nationally and internationally. The consortium model is a whole-of-government approach involving defence and public health organizations as well as industrial and academic partners. Taking a leadership role, DRDC has approached national and international partners to build a robust business model and secure


edge oF tECh e

predictable, consistent funding to advance the MedCMs agenda. Partnerships are being forged within the health and defence portfolios of four key countries: Canada, the United States, the United Kingdom and Australia. “The definition of ‘consortium’ is key to how we have structured this concept and engaged our national and international partners,” says Dr. Camille Boulet, director general for DRDC Suffield, who is leading the national and international engagement. “A consortium is intended to bring together communities to achieve something that separately they could not. This consortium allows all partners to contribute in an equitable and purposeful manner to ensure that our respective nations have the needed countermeasures.” To this end, a major international coordination meeting will take place in Washington, D.C. on February 6 and 7, 2012 to discuss collaboration plans, to be followed by an international MedCMs conference that will include input from government, industry, health institutes such as the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR), and academia. “We reached out to our closest allies for the defence aspect, and to public health because of their role and common cause with defence,” Harding notes. As part of the formulation of the consortium, DRDC looked for models in other nations that currently have strategies in place to achieve final MedCM products with the necessary regulatory approvals. The U.S. was the only nation to have such a strategy, and after exploring the mutual benefits, the first international partnership was formed. Important, new regulations in Canada have recently been recommended to provide an opportunity for extraordinary drugs, such as the MedCMs envisioned in this partnership, to be submitted for consideration of their safety and efficacy. Notably, related legislation already exists in the U.S. Regulatory approval is the key objective in these MedCM partnerships, and these new regulations provide a critical path for candidate MedCMs to prove their worth. The consortium model envisions an integrated capability to produce MedCMs according to the common or separate requirements of defence and health, addressing various departmental obligations, national requirements, and the ability to capitalize on international opportunities. Another benefit of the consortium approach includes the sharing of manufacturing among countries so that each country would not have to manufacture and stock-

pile every MedCM, leading to cost reduction while increasing the number of final MedCM products. “This critical activity is beyond what any one company, government department or country could achieve alone,” Harding explains. “We need a consortium to each do their part to deliver needed MedCMs from the laboratory to approved use by military and first responders,” DRDC Suffield has a number of unique, world-class facilities and capabilities that could be shared through collaboration with national and international academic and government institutes as well as with industry. These include genetics, neurobehaviour, modelling of injury mechanisms and treatment, and broadlybased chemical synthesis and analytical capabilities. The research centre has the mandate and capability to synthesize, maintain and use listed chemicals in small-scale defensive experiments and operates specialized facilities and equipment to work safely with viruses and bacteria. “As we’ve seen with potential pandemic and emerging diseases and the deployment of Canadians to countries where there are diseases we do not normally see, as well as the possibility of chemical and biological exposure, it is critically important to be able to provide MedCMs to protect CF members while deployed,” says Dr. Harding. “Those realities require that we find ways to complete the development of MedCMs to preserve both civilian and CF members’ health and protect them at home and abroad.”

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B Book shelf

Reviewed by Roy Thomas, MSC, CD, MA (RMC)

Canada’s place in the age of air power The Age of Airpower Martin van Creveld Public Affairs, 2011, $40.00

T

he process to procure sixty-five F-35 aircraft has provoked debate about Canada’s aerospace defence needs. Martin van Creveld’s latest book, The Age of Airpower, provides a welcome historical context for arguments both pro and con about acquiring the Joint Strike Fighter or its equivalent. At minimum, its conclusion demands consideration: “There are historical grounds for suspecting that the combination of very high quality and very small numbers is a typical sign of military degeneration.” A quick scan of some of the chapter titles will give you an indication of van Creveld’s thought provoking analysis: “The Twilight of Naval Aviation,” “Spurious Victories,” “Lose and Leave,” “Paper Wars.” However, as a Canadian well aware of our own unique aerospace heritage, I can’t help but feel that the context he uses to support his conclusions falls short. For example, in his four-chapter coverage of World War II, labeled the “Greatest War of All,” the portrait of an independent Canada, which produced more four engine bombers during that war than any other belligerent except the United States and Great Britain, is lost in a big picture labeled “British Empire.” Indeed, 6 Group of RAF Bomber Command had more Canadian four engine bomber squadrons on ops except for those of our English speaking allies. Moreover, to lump Canadian aircraft production within the “British Empire” frame is misleading given that Canada manufactured a thousand dive-bombers, none of which saw combat with British or Canadian services. More useful would have been an exploration of

Tea Time with Terrorists Mark Stephen Meadows Soft Skull Press, 2010, $14.06

28 DECEMBER/JANUARY 2012

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how these Canadian air power achievements added to Canada’s status in the immediate postwar international environment. There is also little discussion of air power requirements to maintain sovereignty of “national airspace” and thus the unique bi-national mechanism that is NORAD is overlooked. Van Creveld fails to address the level of national technical education or training required to support the development and maintenance of air power, or technical level of personnel to operate radar systems. Five thousand RCAF radar technicians were recruited and hastily posted, as individuals, into the RAF, to make good the shortfall of British recruits with the necessary radio background. Soviet Russia did produce masses of aircraft, far out-producing Canada in sheer numbers. However, van Creveld suggests that over 50 percent were tasked for Close Air Support (CAS). If, as many historians now suggest, the war against the Nazi was won by the Soviet armies, the effectiveness of this allocation of airpower assets deserves more consideration. Van Creveld cites in his conclusions a recent American general noting that CAS could only be expected within 25 minutes, “a marginal improvement on what the RAF in Egypt had achieved in the Western Desert.” He does acknowledge that the Israeli Air Force had response times, during Operation Cast Lead in 2006, of between 60-90 seconds using Apache helicopters already in the air to provide CAS. However, this loitering by manned aviation or aircraft assets comes with a cost. Unfortunately, van Creveld does not delve into the role of unmanned aerial vehicles in the CAS role. While he concludes that manned tactical/strategic aircraft will be replaced by UAVs, I would have appreciated more of his thoughts on the use of “drones” in other roles of future air forces. The most controversial issue van Creveld raises is who should own airpower assets, the user or the air force? Again, Canadian experience is perhaps instructive. Our Chinook helicopters, it appears, were sold to the Dutch in the early 1990s when cuts came, because our air force was paying to man and operate a helicopter that was primarily used by the army, which of course refused to pay for equipment it didn’t own or operate. Van Creveld notes that the U.S. army and the marines operate their own extensive fleets. As a text to place the F-35 procurement within context of the development of airpower, van Creveld’s tome serves Canadians very well, even if some specific Canadian context is ignored. It can only be hoped that some of his conclusions are premature and that a revised edition will include more on UAVs as an element of airpower.

O

ur foreign minister has threatened a boycott of the next Commonwealth meeting in Sri Lanka if that country does not deal with human rights abuses. Most allegations suggest that the Sinhalese majority is perpetuating violations of the defeated Tamil militants and their supporters. A large Tamil Diaspora in Toronto has created an “ethnic” voting bloc that cannot be ignored by any Canadian political party. Author Mark Meadows puts a human face to the tragedy that played out in Sri Lanka with these anecdotal accounts of sipping tea with some of the leading “actors.”


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T The Last Word Dr. Marco Wyss and Dr. Alex Wilner

are Senior Fellows with the Center for Security Studies at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology. Wilner is also a Fellow with the Macdonald Laurier Institute in Ottawa.

TH

A case for

the Joint Strike Fighter

C

Ideally, Canada will buy its next fighter from an allied state. In anada’s recent contribution of CF-18s to NATO’s air doing so, it will avoid sending an unintended political message campaign in Libya underscores the need to purchase and will pre-emptively grease the wheels in the event spare parts F-35 jet fighters. Military interoperability with allies are needed during periods of crisis or war. It is important, too, will be of paramount importance if Canada wants to that Canada signs off with a producer that will “stay in the game” use airpower to do anything other than defend its sovereignty in over the long haul. the coming decades. Canada could purchase sophisticated aircraft from a number In the future, the United States and most of Canada’s major NATO of sources. The Eurofighter Typhoon, the French Rafale, and allies will be relying on the F-35. The benefit of joining them is guarthe Swedish Gripen are all excellent options, comparable to the anteed interoperability. Canada can decide to fly different models of upgraded F-18 Super Hornet. But all of these aircraft rely on aircraft into combat, but there are risks in doing so when part of a older, fourth generation technology and coalition that must be taken into consideration. will eventually be outpaced and outclassed When Canada flies F-35s alongside its allies in When a government by the F-35 and its cohort. Furthermore, a future combat environment, it will ensure its decides to purchase pointing to Indian or Australian purchases pilots have the right tools to work expeditiously, of fourth generation competitors to the effectively and safely. military hardware F-35 as evidence that Canadians have atWhen it goes operational, the F-35 will be from another country, tractive alternatives neglects the fact that the most sophisticated fighter jet on the international market. While the “fifth generation it must also weigh the both purchases are intended to fill medigaps in national capability rather fighter” does not represent a technological political and strategic um-term than replace fifth generation options altorevolution, it will certainly have a qualitative signals it is sending gether. Australia has signalled it will fly the edge over older, fourth generation models like F-35 and India has already bought into a the CF-18. It will be the only multi-role fifth to other states. The Russian fifth generation fighter project. generation aircraft in the sky. Britain, Australia, arms trade can be a The era of the European fighter is coming Denmark, Italy, the Netherlands, Turkey and to a close. Averting a European decline will Norway have all queued up and will be flying political minefield. require the establishment of another multiF-35s by 2020. In addition, Israel and other national consortium – like the one behind the Eurofighter. But any friendly countries are also planning their own purchases. consortium, which would ideally by reinforced by French and SwedThe future rests with fifth, not fourth, generation fighters. The ish involvement, is unlikely to take place given that several European risk in spending a lesser fortune today on an upgraded version of states have already partnered with the U.S. on the F-35 project. the CF-18 is that Canada will find itself flying obsolete hardware Canadians are right to debate their continued participation in the before long. exorbitantly expensive, imperfect, and risky JSF program. And yet, Most importantly, though no alternative bids to the F-35 were Canada has few good alternatives. Arguments suggesting Canada entertained during the selection process, in reality there are virtucan replace its aging CF-18s with souped-up, fourth generation ally no competitors. The fighter jet industry has become increasversions, ignore the bigger picture: these planes, no matter the upingly polarized. The Americans and the Russians are the current grades, will eventually go the way of third and second generation heavyweights, China is catching up, and Europe is on the way out. aircraft – to the dump. Russian and Chinese fifth generation jets are Global trends matter, because where Canadians buy their weapin development and are likely to challenge the F-35. ons can be just as important as what they buy. A modern air force will require fifth generation technology, and When a government decides to purchase military hardware unless Canadians are prepared to fly Russian or Chinese jets into from another country, it must also weigh the political and stracombat, the F-35 is the only option left. tegic signals it is sending to other states. The arms trade can be a political minefield. 30 DECEMBER/JANUARY 2012

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