Forces: May 23, 2002


Canada is desperately short of soldiers due to retention and recruiting problems. The Canadian military is supposed to have 60,000 personnel but only has 52,300. The number of "longer than six months" deployments during 1996-2001 is more than twice the rate of 1991-1995. No less than 72 percent of personnel who complete their first three-year tour refuse to re-enlist, and recruiting goals have not been met. During 2001, the goal was 4,800 new recruits, but only 3,655 actually enlisted. The Navy has tied up one of its four destroyers due to the lack of crew, and the Army (which just sent 800 troops to Afghanistan) is trying to figure out where it will find the 1,600 troops it must send to Bosnia to replace the 1,600 already there.Stephen V Cole


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