Forces: October 6, 2001


The Canadian military is in sad shape. Required by a 1994 White Paper to deploy at least one complete brigade within 90 days and to "fight against the best and win", new reports show that it can do neither. In an immediate crisis, the Army could deploy no more than one or two companies, and it cannot afford to simultaneously modernize, keep a brigade in the Balkans, and be ready to deploy another brigade to combat. The low level of training, the poor state of equipment, and the lack of logistics makes combat deployment problematical. The Navy is so short of sailors that one destroyer is docked for lack of a crew. The Air Force has a chronic pilot shortage. A new report by the Conference of Defence Associations says that Canada needs to spend an extra billion every year for the next five years.--Stephen V Cole




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