Proceedings of the Standing Senate Committee on
National Security and Defence
Issue 13 - Evidence
OTTAWA, Monday, February 21, 2005
The Standing Senate Committee on National Security and Defence, to which was referred Bill C-6, to establish
Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness Canada and to amend or repeal certain acts, met this day at 9:45 a.m. to
give clause-by-clause consideration to the bill; and to examine and report on the national security policy for Canada.
Senator Colin Kenny (Chairman) in the chair.
The Chairman: I call to order the meeting of the Standing Senate Committee on National Security and Defence. Is it
agreed, honourable senators, that the committee move to clause-by-clause consideration of Bill C-6, an act to establish
Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness Canada and to amend or appeal certain acts?
Hon. Senators: Agreed.
The Chairman: Unless the committee decides otherwise, the usual procedure is to postpone consideration of the long
title and the short title contained in clause 1. Is it agreed, honourable senators, that the committee proceed in the usual
Hon. Senators: Agreed.
Senator Forrestall: Will we wait for Senator Meighen?
The Chairman: We asked him to come, Senator Forrestall, and we have quorum to proceed.
Senator Forrestall: I accept that, Mr. Chairman.
The Chairman: Shall clause 2 carry?
Some Hon. Senators: Agreed.
Senator Cools: Abstain.
Senator Forrestall: Abstain.
The Chairman: Shall clause 3 carry?
Some Hon. Senators: Agreed.
Senator Cools: Abstain.
Senator Forrestall: Abstain.
The Chairman: Shall clause 4 carry?
Some Hon. Senators: Agreed.
Senator Cools: Abstain.
Senator Forrestall: Abstain.
The Chairman: Shall clause 5 carry?
Some Hon. Senators: Agreed.
Senator Cools: Abstain.
Senator Forrestall: Abstain.
The Chairman: Shall clause 6 carry?
Some Hon. Senators: Agreed.
Senator Cools: Abstain.
Senator Forrestall: Abstain.
The Chairman: Shall clause 7 carry?
Some Hon. Senators: Agreed.
Senator Cools: Abstain.
Senator Forrestall: Abstain.
The Chairman: Shall clause 8 carry?
Some Hon. Senators: Agreed.
Senator Cools: Abstain.
Senator Forrestall: Abstain.
The Chairman: Shall clause 9 carry?
Some Hon. Senators: Agreed.
Senator Forrestall: Abstain.
Senator Cools: Abstain.
The Chairman: Shall clause 10 carry?
Some Hon. Senators: Agreed.
Senator Forrestall: Abstain.
Senator Cools: Abstain.
The Chairman: Shall clause 11 carry?
Some Hon. Senators: Agreed.
Senator Forrestall: Abstain.
Senator Cools: Abstain.
The Chairman: Shall clause 12 carry?
Some Hon. Senators: Agreed.
Senator Forrestall: Abstain.
Senator Cools: Abstain.
The Chairman: Shall clause 13 carry?
Some Hon. Senators: Agreed.
Senator Forrestall: Abstain.
Senator Cools: Abstain.
The Chairman: Shall clause 14 carry?
Some Hon. Senators: Agreed.
Senator Forrestall: Abstain.
Senator Cools: Abstain.
The Chairman: Shall clause 15 carry?
Some Hon. Senators: Agreed.
Senator Forrestall: Abstain.
Senator Cools: Abstain.
The Chairman: Shall clause 16 carry?
Some Hon. Senators: Agreed.
Senator Forrestall: Abstain.
Senator Cools: Abstain.
The Chairman: Shall clause 17 carry?
Some Hon. Senators: Agreed.
Senator Forrestall: Abstain.
Senator Cools: Abstain.
The Chairman: Shall clause 18 carry?
Some Hon. Senators: Agreed?
Senator Forrestall: Abstain.
Senator Cools: Abstain.
The Chairman: Shall clause 19 carry?
Some Hon. Senators: Agreed.
The Chairman: Shall clause 20 carry?
Some Hon. Senators: Agreed.
The Chairman: Shall clause 21 carry?
Some Hon. Senators: Agreed.
The Chairman: Shall clause 22 carry?
Some Hon. Senators: Agreed.
The Chairman: Shall clause 23 carry?
Some Hon. Senators: Agreed.
The Chairman: Shall clause 24 carry?
Some Hon. Senators: Agreed.
The Chairman: Shall clause 25 carry?
Some Hon. Senators: Agreed.
The Chairman: Shall clause 26 carry?
Some Hon. Senators: Agreed.
The Chairman: Shall clause 27 carry?
Some Hon. Senators: Agreed.
The Chairman: Shall clause 28 carry?
Some Hon. Senators: Agreed.
The Chairman: Shall clause 29 carry?
Some Hon. Senators: Agreed.
The Chairman: Shall clause 30 carry?
Some Hon. Senators: Agreed.
The Chairman: Shall clause 31 carry?
Some Hon. Senators: Agreed.
The Chairman: Shall clause 32 carry?
Some Hon. Senators: Agreed.
The Chairman: Shall clause 33 carry?
Some Hon. Senators: Agreed.
The Chairman: Shall clause 34 carry?
Some Hon. Senators: Agreed.
The Chairman: On clause 34, I have opposed and agreed. Can I see a show of hands? Those in favour? I see four
hands, Senator Losier-Cool, Senator Munson, Senator Day and Senator Banks. Those opposed? I see Senator
Forrestall, Senator Meighen and Senator Cools.
Shall clause 35 carry?
Some Hon. Senators: Agreed.
The Chairman: Shall clause 36 carry?
Some Hon. Senators: Agreed.
The Chairman: Shall clause 37 carry?
Some Hon. Senators: Agreed.
The Chairman: I hear an opposed. Those in favour? I see Senator Losier-Cool, Senator Munson, Senator Day,
Senator Banks and Senator Forrestall in favour. Those opposed?
Senator Cools: I think Senator Forrestall got confused. That is the section that repeals the solicitor general.
The Chairman: Let me do this again, please, colleagues. We are on clause 37. Shall it carry?
Some Hon. Senators: Agreed.
The Chairman: Those in favour? I see Senator Losier-Cool, Senator Munson, Senator Day and Senator Banks.
Those opposed? I see Senator Forrestall, Senator Meighen and Senator Cools.
Senator Meighen: Put me down for all the others that you did before I got here too.
The Chairman: Shall clause 38 carry?
Some Hon. Senators: Agreed.
Senator Cools: Abstain.
The Chairman: I asked the record to show that you had abstained from them all, except the ones you voted against,
Senator Cools: Yes, I abstain and oppose.
The Chairman: I assume you are the same, Senator Forrestall.
Senator Forrestall: Yes.
The Chairman: Shall clause 1, which contains the short title, carry?
Some Hon. Senators: Agreed.
Senator Cools: Abstain. I abstain on every clause of the bill.
The Chairman: I am assuming the honourable senators who wished to abstain will continue to abstain.
Senator Forrestall: I want to address the title clause.
The Chairman: Senator Forrestall, you have the floor.
Senator Forrestall: Colleagues, chair, for reasons that most of you are fully aware, I have no objections to any of the
content of this proposed bill. My objections and my subsequent abstentions, on all but two clauses, reflect my concern
about the loss of strength that the bill takes from the soon-to-be-lost Department of the Solicitor General, the law
officer of our Crown, our government. It is for that reason only that I have abstained.
We have indeed, as the chair has suggested on many occasions, advocated this type of strong position for the
minister responsible. I think it is fitting that Canada have, at the high level of Deputy Prime Minister, an officer of
cabinet, member of cabinet, who can function. I wish that she, or whoever the minister is, could still be styled the
I cannot see that far into the future, but it seems to me at some point in the not-too-distant future, we are going to
require the very significant contribution that an independent officer in cabinet can adjudicate so that we might have
continuing competence in ultimate decisions of cabinet, and to whom the people of Canada might, through their pleas,
Therefore, the loss is most discomforting. It is yet another step in the removal of all the visual evidence of the Crown
and I regret that. However, that is not the reason; the reason is that there should be some confidence in the
independence of this position and this office. Without something akin or equivalent, I can see no independence. I can
see no room for the minister of the Crown responsible for this act to exercise his or her best judgment. What that
minister will be doing will be reflecting government decisions, right or wrong, without access to appeal.
For such a little thing, it is such a wonderful thing we are about to give up. This will be one of the last chances we
have, and that is why I have abstained. I did not want to be part of it. I did not want to object to the content of the
proposed bill; I just regret the loss of it. Thank you very much for allowing me to be part of it.
Senator Banks: There is an argument being made that the title Solicitor General is imbued with some special
independence on the one hand, and with some special resonance having to do with the Crown on the other. I disagree
with both arguments.
The United States has a Solicitor General that has no relationship to the Crown. I do not think there is anything
that continues over by way of a Royal Prerogative, which is contained by definition in the office of Solicitor General,
notwithstanding that it might be an old one.
This country did very well without a Solicitor General for quite some time. There has been no evidence presented by
anyone that this country was ever led to the lip of disaster, let alone over that lip, by the absence of a Solicitor General.
There has been no evidence given that the existence of a Solicitor General, and the office in itself, has ever saved us
from making terrible mistakes in either the making of law or the application of law.
We have changed the names of members of the ministry of this country many times. The fact is that the Solicitor
General, in my view, is a member of the cabinet, a member of the ministry of this country, in the same way that the
minister of the interior once was and that the minister of external affairs once was.
The fact that the only reference in the present proposed bill to the office, aside from its abolition, is one which says
that all of the authority that was once vested in the Solicitor General is continued, and is made to continue by this very
act, in the new office which it creates.
The government must be allowed to govern; that is what the government is doing in creating this new office.
The authority is continued. There has been no evidence that absent a Solicitor General, our country went to hell in a
hand basket. I am not satisfied that the name by which we call this function in the ministry is the thing which will
determine whether it is effective. What will determine that is the quality of the persons who occupy this office. For that
reason I oppose the proposed amendment.
Senator Cools: I would like to take issue with the unconstitutional nature of Senator Banks' arguments that were
presented without any evidence and without any authorities.
I would like to disagree with both the substance and the law of what he has said. Colleagues, I would like to say that
when Senator Banks talks about the Solicitor General of the United States of America, he does not seem to grasp that
the Solicitor General in the United States of America is in exactly the same relationship to the sovereign as the Solicitor
General in Canada is in relationship to our sovereign who happens to be Her Majesty. Senator Banks seems to think it
is just in a name. I have said again and again, and it is getting tedious, why not call the Prime Minister, king? Could we
bring a bill, an act, an Order-in-Council, to say it is all in a name so the Prime Minister shall be king? Maybe that will
happen. Who knows?
I am trying to say that the weight of the jurisprudence and the weight of history and the weight of constitutional law
for centuries argue against the position that Senator Banks has put forth. I even go so far as to say it is not even a
The important matter before us is that the Solicitor General of Canada is no ordinary minister. That position holds
two positions, one as a minister, and second as the law officer of the Crown. These positions may or may not be cabinet
ministers and may or may not sit in cabinet depending on the jurisdiction that we are in and the time in history.
It is important for us to understand very clearly that the minister came before us and gave no explanation, no
justification, and no evidence as to why this position was being deleted, constitutionally. The minister did not cite a
constitutional authority and all I could hear during that evidence was that we just think it should be so, end of matter.
We do not have to cite any constitutional authority because we ourselves are the constitutional authorities. I have great
difficulty with that.
I have a lot of sensitivity and feeling for the good work that this committee has done in revolutionizing how this
country views the issues around security and defence. I commend that work but I would like to say strongly that there
is absolutely nothing in the committee's work around the consolidation of a ministry around public safety and security.
There is nothing in the committee's work that can be remotely relied upon to bring about the abolition and the removal
of the position of the law officer of the Crown, the Solicitor General of Canada. I want to make sure that we sever that
Many of the issues and questions in this proposed bill have not been canvassed or spoken to. For example, I had
hoped to ask the minister if he were to look to clause 6, particularly subclause (2),
(2) The minister may establish advisory and other committees and provide for their membership, duties, function
I had hoped to get some explanation of the constitutional position of these committees and the membership on the
committees because I think we all know that the reason that clause is in this proposed bill is to allow the minister to
draw down on the consolidated revenue fund to be able to make appointments, the nature of which no one will tell us.
I just want to say for the record here that there are many other issues in this proposed legislation that have not really
been addressed or canvassed, or spoken to and no evidence has been brought forward.
It may be okay with many members of the committee and with others that this is all right. I am told there are some
who like to bills to pass with a minimum of discussion, the faster the better. I am not one of them.
Finally, we have received from the minister and from the witnesses absolutely no explanation or reasons or grounds
presented o as to how and what the impact of this change will be on the constitutional practices of this country and on
the operation of government. Many members of the committee have dismissed the notion that the Solicitor General of
Canada, like law officers of the Crown, is a very unique and special position. I can say to honourable senators that no
evidence has been put before us on either of these points and no evidence has been put to us whatsoever for the need to
jettison that position of Her Majesty.
Senator Meighen: I want to associate myself with Senator Forrestall's remarks and explanation of his voting pattern
which I make my own since the consideration of this started before I was able to be in the room.
I think Senator Cools makes a good point that there is nothing that we have been told by way of justification for
proceeding the way we are. There is no disagreement on this committee, that the substance of the bill grosso modo is
one with which we have been long associated as a committee. We have urged this type of responsibility for the Deputy
Prime Minister and we find ourselves with a proposed bill which in substance we largely agree with but, we find
ourselves faced with an inexplicable and to me, unnecessary change of name. We might just as well have made this a
bill to revamp the office of the Solicitor General and call it the Solicitor General amendment act, or whatever. Why do
we have to come up with such a ringing title as Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness Canada which is rivalled
only by its predecessor OCIPEP?
Senator Cools pointed out that there is in the Justice Act reference to the minister of justice and ex officio the
Attorney General of Canada. At the very least, why could we not have proceeded that way in relation to this proposed
legislation and the reference to the Solicitor General of Canada? It smacks of the easy way out without any real
I agree with Senator Banks, the sky will not fall, that is true. We will continue to do well and do badly as legislators
in terms of debating public bills. Whether this is called the Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness Canada or the
Department of Solicitor General, it will not change. What will change is once again, we have severed a link with
something that has served us well in the past. I have not heard a great outcry in the public to get rid of the term
Solicitor General. I find it unfortunate and unnecessary and agree with my two colleagues on those points.
Senator Day: I respect the comments made by my colleagues. It would appear that we are about to pass this
proposed bill and it is important to recognize the work that this committee has done under your chairmanship, Mr.
In our studies we looked at the work being done by the Solicitor General and a number of other departments and we
felt that it was important to coordinate a number of different silos that were dealing with security and public safety
matters. The Royal Canadian Mounted Police, the Canadian Security Intelligence Agency and the newly created
Canada Border Services Agency, which deals with immigration matters as well as other border issues, were all brought
together under one heading, and it was this committee that recommended that coordination.
I opt for a title that expresses a new and coordinated function that will set priorities among those various
departments, agencies and areas of government that deal with public safety and emergency preparedness. I think this is
the beginning of a new era in relation to this whole area of public safety and emergency preparedness. I support the
legislation as it appears.
Senator Banks: I will not take long, but I must comment on some comments.
It is not true that any member of this committee has dismissed any of the considerations you have brought up,
Senator Cools, or considerations that have been brought up by others. I agree with Senator Day that the purpose of
the title is to clearly describe, in ways that the title ``Solicitor General's Act'' would not, precisely what is being done
here. Senator Cools, I have to say that the constitutional authority in Canada is the Government of Canada.
Senator Cools: Really?
Senator Banks: Yes.
Senator Cools: That is a novel approach.
The Chairman: Order, Senator Cools, please.
Senator Banks: If there is authority to be wielded in Canada, the entity, surely, that is constitutionally enabled to do
so is the government. With respect to evidence, I cannot present evidence that evidence has not been presented, but my
comment on evidence was that there has been no evidence presented that we get into any glue either by not having or,
in the past, by not having had a Solicitor General.
With regard to the questions on advisory committees, Senator Cools, you raised that during second reading debate
and I answered it during second reading debate. I further sent you a list, which, if you have not received it, I will
happily send you again. This is far from precedent setting. There are about a dozen acts establishing departments of
government that have advisory committees. They have no constitutional standing, but they are appropriate and very
useful. As I mentioned in that debate, I was a member of some of them before I came here.
Senator Cools: Either I was not clear or the honourable senator misunderstood me, but constitutional authority in
the lexicon of governance usually means law, not persons. In other words, we are supposed to be governed by laws, not
by people. For the honourable senator to say that the constitutional authority is the government proves my point in a
way, because I have said that the government has no legal authority to do what it is doing; it has just asserted that it
does. You have said that the government is the constitutional authority. Constitutional authority and constitutional
authorities always refer to the constitution as laws, those parts that are codified and those parts that are not codified.
You seem to think that the government can create laws simply by saying it is so. That is a novel constitutional
approach. I would like to make that quite clear.
The government has shown that it is not bound by and is not relying on any law to do what it is doing. It is an act of
someone's will, but it is not law. Let us get this straight. If you want to uphold that, be my guest.
It is fair to say that we disagree profoundly. Perhaps at some point in time the Senate might conduct some study on
the meaning of those roles and the special relationship that they bear to the sovereign, to Parliament and to cabinet.
I want to make sure that it is clear on the record that constitutional authority usually refers to constitutional law,
which is not something we should make up as we go along.
This committee's recommendations were wiser than you might think. When I observed the appointment process and
the swearing in process on December 12, I was very distressed because at that time we were told that Anne McLellan
was sworn in as Solicitor General to be styled the Minister of Public Safety and the Deputy Prime Minister. That was
an egregious thing that bothered me very deeply. However, I looked to your report, and I found you never
recommended that. You recommended the political upgrading of the position of the deputy minister and the locating
of these positions in someone very close to the top, which is different from creating a constitutional position that would
be at one the Solicitor General and the Minister of Public Safety, so perhaps we should look at your report again.
This country has a Constitution. The Constitution exists in many different statutes. Perhaps we should carry on this
debate in the chamber.
Once again, for those watching, there is no constitutional authority whatsoever for the jettisoning of the position of
Solicitor General. I can prove that through a chain of authorities that is very long and very wide.
I do not think I am persuading anyone here, but the record should show that it is not open to this government, even
though this government seems to believe it is, to change everythingwilly-nilly, do exactly as they like, and then bring it
to Parliament and say: ``It is so because I have said it is so.'' That is an objectionable form of governance that is neither
good governance nor limited governance.
The die is cast. I have spoken through my votes onclause-by-clause consideration. It would have been better had we
debated the clauses individually as we moved along so that our remarks would have been directed to the individual
clauses rather than as a general medley at the end. I am grateful to have had the opportunity to put these concerns on
I would also like to say, finally, that what is being disfigured and changed here is more than a name. What is being
disfigured and changed here is the Constitution of this country, and this is not the first bill that I have seen this
government bring that does that has brought about a change to the Constitution.
Let us understand clearly that, piece by piece, bit by bit, this government is dismantling the constitutional system of
this nation. I disagree with it and I certainly will take every opportunity I have to record my objections. I do not think
my objections will stop this government, since this government is intent at all times on foisting these wishes of a very
small minority of lawyers upon us, but it is a shame. It is a tragedy that Ottawa is so disconnected from the ordinary
Canadian that ordinary Canadians no longer know the lexicon of this place or know even the language to question all
of these changes.
They are confused and bamboozled every day when senators or ministers say this is a little name change and that it
means nothing. However, this is a profound change. We have diminished the position of the minister of public safety
by not attaching the role of the Solicitor General. We have not gone into too many issues in the proposed bill and the
enormous powers at all levels proposed therein. Those powers proposed for the minister are vast and disparate and
would have been better tempered, modified, exercised and executed under the Solicitor General as well. I hope that I
have been clear on this vast subject matter.
So much of the material before us is simply erroneous. Other than Dr. Wesley Pue, the witnesses were not especially
helpful. At the risk of being viewed as a kind of dinosaur who insists we should be loyal to the Constitution of Canada,
if I have to choose between loyalty to law and loyalty to an individual, I will choose loyalty to law and principle.
The Chairman: Seeing no one else, honourable senators, we are back to the question: Shall clause 1, the short title,
Some Hon. Senators: Agreed.
Senator Cools: Abstain.
Senator Forrestall: Abstain.
The Chairman: Shall the title carry?
Some Hon. Senators: Agreed.
Senator Forrestall: Abstain.
Senator Cools: Abstain.
The Chairman: Shall the bill be adopted?
Some Hon. Senators: Agreed.
Senator Cools: Abstain.
Senator Forrestall: I could agree that the bill be adopted.
The Chairman: Could I ask the clerk to poll the committee?
The Clerk: I will call each senator's name.
Senator Kenny: Yea.
Senator Banks: Yea.
Senator Cools: Abstain.
Senator Day: Yea.
Senator Forrestall: Abstain.
Senator Losier-Cool: Yea.
Senator Meighen: Abstain.
Senator Munson: Yea.
The Clerk: Yeas five; nays, none; abstentions, three.
The Chairman: The bill is carried. Is it agreed that I report this bill at the next sitting of the Senate?
Hon. Senators: Agreed.
The Chairman: Carried.
Senator Cools: I would expect discussion before the bill is reported to the house. Should we not debate whether the
report that accompanies the bill should have some observations? It should record some of the strong constitutional
questions that have been registered.
The Chairman: Senator Cools, the situation is such that the bill has been adopted and the committee has voted that
it be reported to the Senate. I am prepared to ask the committee if it wishes to make observations before the bill is
reported. If there is such willingness, then we can discuss the observations. Are honourable senators willing?
Senator Forrestall: Is there a reason that the committee is not on CPAC this morning for this important piece of
proposed legislation? I have a reason for wanting observations appended.
Senator Munson: From my perspective, have not the observations been put on the record? Sometimes this country
should move on, in this committee.
The Chairman: I take your point. The fault of not being televised is likely mine.
Senator Forrestall: Is there a reason?
The Chairman: I assumed this meeting would be reasonably straightforward. It could have been televised and I bear
the blame for it not being televised.
Senator Forrestall: That is not quite good enough. I have no redress with respect to the matter but you made a
judgment and that is fine. I would have thought that this meeting would be considered one of the most important in
recent months. Certainly, the consequences of it will be felt for a long time. We will live very much within the
parameters of these few short clauses. I would have thought it useful, given that we have access to public airwaves, to
have today's proceedings available to those who like to follow CPAC, who enjoy the committees and who have spoken
highly of the work of the committee under your leadership. I will discuss it with you at a later time to determine how
we might avoid this error in the future. I am disappointed.
The Chairman: I regret this and I welcome hearing from you now or at any time, Senator Forrestall. I note your
disappointment and I apologize for it.
Senator Cools: We are at the stage where we will discuss the committee report.
The Chairman: We are at the stage where we will discuss whether we will have observations.
Senator Cools: I am talking about that, which is part of the committee report.
The Chairman: The first question to be resolved is whether to have observations. If the committee wants to do so,
then we will discuss the observations.
Senator Cools: The committee is at the stage where it will discuss the contents of or any absence in the committee
The Chairman: The substance is decided after including observations is determined.
Senator Cools: I thought it would be decided by the nature of the observations.
The Chairman: I am in the hands of the committee and will take guidance from the committee. Do senators wish to
discuss whether to have observations? If the decision is to have observations, do you wish to have a discussion of
observations or do you wish to discuss observations first?
Senator Day: Mr. Chairman, on that issue we have voted to report this to the Senate. If you had said, ``reported
back without observation,'' or ``without comment,'' then we would not have this discussion. We did not do that and it
is my view that when we report the bill back we should do so without amendment and without observations.
The Chairman: That was my intent. The question is whether to have observations and I would entertain comments
Senator Meighen: I would try to shortcut by suggesting a straw poll. Before we know the outcome of the discussion,
why not short circuit it and determine the response?
The Chairman: That is what I was trying to get to.
Senator Losier-Cool: My comments echo those of Senator Day. We just adopted the motion to have the report
presented at the next sitting of the Senate. If members wanted to make comments, they should have made them when
we were on that motion. You cannot table the report without knowing the nature of the comments, and I think that the
report has been adopted.
The Chairman: We will have a straw poll, beginning with the Deputy Chairman of the Committee, Senator
Senator Forrestall: At the risk of this becoming a farce, which I do not want, I do not care whether we have
amendments. Who will read it?
The Chairman: It is a matter of having observations.
Senator Forrestall: I have no view on that subject.
The Chairman: Senator Banks?
Senator Banks: It is possible that we might have considerable discussion in the house at third reading, and that the
matters discussed this morning and others might be raised there. Since we have already determined to report the bill
amended, we should stay that course.
Senator Meighen: The writing is clearly on the wall. From what I have heard, members of the committee either do
not want to discuss it further or do not wish to add observations. That is fine; let us move on.
Senator Day: Mr. Chairman, my view has not changed from five minutes ago.
Senator Munson: My vote was my observation.
The Chairman: Senator Losier-Cool, you have already made your feelings clear.
Senator Cools: We could avoid some of these difficulties if we could proceed a little more slowly and call for debate
on the issues at the appointed time. This particular process is not especially difficult. The interesting thing is the
proposed bill has been adopted, so the government already has it in its hands, in its reach, so to speak.
The real problem is around the question of whether you should report this proposed legislation this afternoon. I
have known bills to be adopted in committee and the chairman not get authority to report the bill, so the bill just sits in
the committee unreported for a little while.
It seems to me we should have been discussing this in a timely way, so that before the final authority is given to
report, we had discussed what it is that we are reporting. It would be reporting the proposed bill plus some
observations. At the risk of being repetitive, and I must say a little game of politics that I was taught by some of the
great masters, is that in victory you can afford to be magnanimous.
Therefore, what I hear is that there is not much of a will to report the proposed legislation with some observations.
In any event, I should take the opportunity to put on the record the nature of the observation that I think the proposed
bill should be reported to say. Not to report such an observation is to impugn the proposed legislation, and certainly to
mar its efficacy.
The Chairman: Senator Cools, I have to call you to order here please. You have suggested that you have not been
treated here with fairness, and properly.
Senator Cools: I did not say that.
The Chairman: You had every opportunity, as we went through each clause, to stop the debate. The first time there
was an indication from the committee to stop and discuss a clause, we stopped and we discussed that clause. I am
sorry, but you have been given every opportunity. We have just finished conducting a straw poll of the committee, and
the committee has indicated they do not wish to have observations.
We have adopted the proposed legislation; and we have adopted a motion to report it to the Senate at its next
sitting. Given that the committee has indicated it does not wish to have observations, I suggest that any observations
you wish to make further on this be at third reading.
Senator Cools: Thank you, chairman. I was not speaking about personal observations; I was talking about
The committee continued in camera.
The committee resumed in public
The Chairman: Welcome to the Standing Senate Committee on National Security and Defence. My name is Colin
Kenny and I chair the committee.
We have before us today a distinguished witness, Dr. Richard Gimblett. He is an independent historian and defence
policy analyst with 27 years of service in the Canadian navy. He served in ships of various classes on both coasts,
including as combat officer of HMCS Protecteur for operations in the Persian Gulf during the war of 1991.
He subsequently co-authored the official account of the Canadian participation in the Gulf War. He was a major
contributor to the long-range strategic planning document for the Canadian navy entitled Leadmark: The Navy's
Strategy for 2020. His newest book, published in June 2004, is Operation Apollo, the Golden Age of the Canadian Navy
in the War Against Terrorism. He is a research fellow with the Centre for Foreign Policy Studies at Dalhousie
University, is on the visiting faculty of the Canadian Forces College and is vice-president of the Canadian Nautical
Research Society. Dr. Gimblett, we understand you have a short statement and the floor is yours.
Mr. Richard Gimblett, Research Fellow, Centre for Foreign Policy Studies, Dalhousie University: Mr. Chairman,
honourable senators, thank you for the invitation to appear before you today. Your deliberations are occurring at a
critical juncture: A new chief of defence staff with a radical new vision for the Canadian Forces has just been
appointed, and in two days, when the government brings down its budget, we will see just how deep its commitment to
the Canadian Forces is.
Your committee has made important recommendations in the past, many of which were scoffed at when they first
appeared, only to be proven correct with the passage of time. With these various thoughts in mind, I am especially
pleased to have this opportunity to provide input to your present inquiry into the general state of the Canadian Forces.
There are several themes I would like to address in my opening remarks, but the first might as well be the new
concept of operations that LGen. Hillier has been revealing in the press over the past couple of weeks since his
assumption of command. Insofar as it promotes a vision to restructure the Canadian Forces to make a more
meaningful contribution to international stability through the ability to project significant and identifiably Canadian
Forces independently around the globe, I am in complete accord.
You have heard previously from MGen. Lewis MacKenzie on the subject, and I have submitted to you, as
background to my testimony today, a paper that I prepared with Major General MacKenzie and our colleagues John
Eggenberger and Ralph Fisher, speaking to the acquisition of expeditionary support ships, strategic airlift and other
capabilities required to give it effect.
We began what we called the Sea Horse Project at about this time last year, and presented it to the Prime Minister
and others at the end of June 2004. Our timing was a little bit off. We had hoped that the election would have been over
when it was delivered, but we were committed to a publication schedule that obviously got overtaken by events. It got
lost in the shuffle. However, it is pleasing to see the interest in it now.
I hope LGen. Hillier is successful in obtaining the funds needed to realize his vision. Frankly, I have little confidence
he will be successful. I suspect the upcoming budget will have barely enough new money in it to cover the deficit that
the Canadian Forces has been operating under for the past many years. Whether it is $750 million or $1 billion, that
will not be enough to allow for the recruiting of new troops, to cover the operating deficit and to allow for the
transformation of the forces. The realist historian in me has been disappointed too often by past promises that remain
unfulfilled to be optimistic when it comes to rectifying the Canadian defence condition.
As an admitted navalist, I am concerned that such a limited budget will put the emphasis on reviving the Canadian
army. That revival is much needed after a decade of underfunding and strenuous operations, but within a limited
budget increase, it can only be accomplished at the expense of the other services. That, in turn, can only lead to
interservice bickering for scares resources, and it will pull the rug out from beneath the present climate of ``jointness,''
or integration, as General Hillier calls it. His vision has fostered the most honest and positive level of co-operation
amongst the services that I have seen in my 30-plus years of involvement with the Canadian Forces.
I pray that I am wrong. LGen. Hillier is taking over at a unique moment. Public awareness and expectations have
been raised, in large part, through the good work of this committee and other like-minded organizations, and the
Canadian Forces are in such dire need of replacements for so many different types of equipment that he can literally
start over on many of them. Expeditionary support ships, strategic airlift, close battlefield direct fire support, the list
goes on and the moment is now. However, the acquisition program needs a viable concept of operations to give it
My second theme follows from that line of thought, it being that I do not believe there is sufficient understanding of
the various and important roles that the Canadian navy plays in our defence structure.
Your committee has already addressed the scandalous level of our sea defences in its publication Canada's
Coastlines: The Longest Underdefended Coastline in the World. Not to take anything away from that work, but it, and
much other analysis also now under way, points to a separation of homeland security and overseas expeditionary
operations. I believe that to be a false dichotomy.
This is more than the age-old claim that the sea is one, although there is something to that claim. Once terrorists or
others who might do us harm embark in an ocean-going vessel, it is just as easy for them to appear off our coast as it is
for us to use the oceans and conduct operations on the far side of the world.
More importantly in our case, the structure and employment of our navy is governed primarily by our geography.
The extent and challenging environment of our maritime areas of responsibility on all three coasts demands an oceanic
navy. Ships designed to patrol at the far reaches of the Grand Banks and the Gulf of Alaska, and I have patrolled both
of those areas, and eventually into the Arctic regions, by definition, have the sea-keeping characteristics and endurance
suited for deployments to the far side of the globe.
Of course, we have been troubled little by direct threats in the past, so when the fleet is not required for home
defence, our governments have a long history of deploying it abroad to very great diplomatic and military advantage.
More to the point, the security of Canada and Canadians does not begin at the 200-mile exclusive economic zone.
Canada and Canadians are made more secure by our forces addressing security concerns as close to their points of
origin and as far from our shores as possible.
We can discuss this at length in the question period, but the ideal fleet for our home defence would not look
dramatically different from that we have used to great effect in recent overseas operations. The shift of Canadian naval
priorities from the traditional expeditionary focus to a greater involvement in domestic marine security is not an
unnatural move, especially in the globalized ocean battle space of today. The simple truth is that the variety of missions
performed by our navy in the Arabian Sea and the global war on terrorism are in many ways identical to those required
to ensure security in our home waters. The command of multinational formations has direct application to domestic
joint interagency coordination. The interdiction of escaping al-Qaeda terrorists required the same search and boarding
capabilities to be exercised in surveillance and interdiction off our own coasts. Coalition operations in the littorals of
Southwest Asia had the same stabilizing effects as does our establishing presence in our exclusive economic zone. The
mutual respect that our navy has earned in the conduct of intensive operations overseas with the United States navy
will ensure the preservation of our national interest in securing our continental perimeter.
Essentially, the high-readiness, multi-purpose, combat capable and adaptive fleet we now possess permits the navy
to shift the balance among the domestic and international imperatives when and as required in a rapid and seamless
manner. To let that navy wither would be a true national disaster.
That leads directly to my third and final theme, namely, the unique position our navy plays as an effective tool for
government in international crisis response. For all the looming disaster predicted by myself and others, the fact
remains that ours is one of the few navies in the world that actually works. Let us be honest: There will always be a
Canadian navy. The question is what type and how effective will that navy be if we do not maintain the capabilities it
I spent much of my at-sea service in rusted out old steamers in the 1980s and 1990s. We still got to sea and did really
well in the war games, pretending to have the systems that the fleet now possesses. However, we would have been toast
if the Cold War had ended hotly. I understand that you have queried other witnesses as to the possibility of niche roles
for the Canadian navy. I do not believe that is a practicable option given the range of our maritime interests. However,
I put to you that our navy has carved a niche role for itself that has gone entirely unremarked.
I have recently published an analysis of the operations conducted by our navy in the Arabian Sea over the last
several years. I hope that many of you are familiar with Operation Apollo which was our part in the global war on
terrorism. You can probably recite with me the mantra that the operation was the largest sustained commitment of
Canadian naval forces since the Korean War, but that level of commitment and the special capabilities that our ships
now possess brought us the unique distinction of exercising command of the coalition fleet for most of the two years
that we were actively engaged over there. Basically, while the United States navy was focused on high-end operations
against Afghanistan and Iraq they turned to us for the task of coordinating the movements of all the other forces
gathered in the region. At the height of the Arabian Sea operations, a Canadian commodore was taking charge of
warships from a dozen different nations.
There is something quintessentially Canadian in that sort of role. Some might call it smart, focused, strategic, but
the destroyers it was exercised from are rusting out and no replacement for them has been identified. The supply ships
to replace the ones that kept the destroyers over there will not be available, under the most optimistic predictions, for
seven years. We cannot even afford to maintain the present fleet of frigates, as you heard last week from the Chief of
the Maritime Staff.
If politicians collectively do not start paying attention to our navy, you will have foreclosed an important
opportunity to deploy it effectively and strategically for the next international crisis, of which there are several looming
on the horizon. There is no doubt that we will be involved. We will be there, but will we make a difference?
The Chairman: Thank you, Dr. Gimblett, for that very succinct and useful presentation.
Senator Banks: Thank you, Dr. Gimblett, for being here and for your opening remarks.
You were a significant contributor to Leadmark: The Navy's Strategy for 2020, at which we have all had more than
a peek, which sets out a direction for the Canadian navy up to and including 2020.
Do you think that has had an effect on the direction of the navy? Would you comment on the fact the Sea Horse
Project, was not, if I recall correctly, suggested in Leadmark: The Navy's Strategy for 2020?
Mr. Gimblett: I will start with your second question, senator. The term ``Sea Horse'' does not appear in there
because we coined that term one year ago. However, many of the concepts in that are actually threaded through
Leadmark: The Navy's Strategy for 2020. Throughout the 1990s, world navies, led by the United States navy, which is
the industry standard, if I might call it that, were shifting focus away from the command of the open oceans, away
from being a blue-water fleet, in recognition that we had won command of the sea during the Cold War. There are no
peer competitors to the United States navy. They have command of the sea, and we enjoy that as part of the western
maritime alliance that helped them to achieve that command.
The United States is now shifting its focus to the littoral regions, essentially using the United States navy to help the
other American forces project power ashore. We went along with that line of thinking, which helped shape much of the
thought behind Leadmark. It is not that we would be going along hand in hand with the United States navy on every
operation, but we recognized that because we had command of the seas it was time to start shifting our attention
elsewhere and that inevitably the Canadian army and air force would start to shift their attention to the littoral regions,
and the army did so through the 1990s. Of all the operations in which we were engaged, there were only two that were
nowhere near the sea, and those were Rwanda and Afghanistan, and the United States considered even Afghanistan to
be a littoral conflict; it is only 1,000 kilometres inland. That is the reach of the United States marines and the United
We were tracking that progress, as were the British, the Australians and the Dutch. The Australians and the Dutch
were the two navies with which we performed exercises. The French, the Germans, the Italians and the Spanish shifted
focus to the littorals, the idea being that we would be assisting our various armies to project their power ashore.
The other half of that equation is that the majority of the world's population lives within 200 miles of a coastline,
therefore, the odds are that the majority of operations, especially in the Third World areas of Africa and Asia, would
be conducted in the littorals. That thinking is in Leadmark: The Navy's Strategy for 2020.
Did the Canadian navy follow that? Leadmark was published in August 2001, and supposedly everything changed
on September 11 of that year. I know for a fact that not everyone in the navy had spent as much time reading
Leadmark as you have now, until our operations in the Arabian Sea followed the strategy we had proposed in
Leadmark almost as if it had been scripted. In fact, a member of the Canadian army, knowing that I had had a
significant part in the development of Leadmark: The Navy's Strategy for 2020 asked me how we knew that was the
way things were going to happen. Without reciting the entire script, the strategy said that we would join with coalition
fleets to project power to the far corners of the world and support operations ashore, and that ultimately our Canadian
navy would take command of the coalition fleets, which is exactly what we did.
Senator Banks: The ships that we have heard about to replace the joint support ships, HMCS Protecteur and HMCS
Provider, are not thought of as the kind of projection of expeditionary force that you that are talking about, is that
Mr. Gimblett: Yes, they follow that line of thinking but only as a tentative step. The joint support ship will
incorporate a number of capabilities. It is first and foremost a supply ship for the navy to provide for fleet
replenishment. It has secondary capabilities in the nature of sea lift to provide strategic lift for army formations.
Senator Banks: They would not be big formations.
Mr. Gimblett: That is right. The three ships should carry7,500 lean metres of equipment, which is enough to support
a Canadian battalion. I, among others, argue that the odds of all three ships being available at the same time for
deployment of an entire battalion are remote.
Senator Meighen: How do you define ``battalion?''
Mr. Gimblett: A battalion is 1,000 troops.
Senator Meighen: Do you mean 800 or 1,000 troops?
Mr. Gimblett: I mean whatever magic number the government pulls out of its hat that it is willing to support. When
you look at the number of combat troops within that number that are actually deployed, you will see that it is low.
That is part of the other reason that we propose the Sea Horses Project and the navy proposed the joint support ship.
Many of the administrative functions could be accomplished by the ships' company, which would free up many more
troops of the number actually deployed to be combat-effective troops. However, the joint supply ship has room for 200
troops only, which is nowhere near the numbers just mentioned.
Senator Banks: Some regiments could be carried on that ship. My point is that to do the Sea Horses Project, which
you are proposing, we would need a fourth ship, perhaps designed differently. When you are landing troops on a beach
somewhere, you do not want that vessel to be full of fuel oil.
Mr. Gimblett: Exactly. In fairness to the people developing the concept, the JSS would insert troops and equipment
into a benign environment where the beach is already established. In the Sea Horses Project, as you rightly picked up
on, the majority of places where Canadian Forces need to be deployed would not be benign environments. There is a
presumption that we would hold the beaches and, even more so, a presumption that there is a friendly airfield on which
to land those craft.
Senator Kenny, I know you have been a proponent of strategic airlift but getting that is based on that presumption.
The majority of situations likely to arise, especially if Canadian Forces go there independently, will not be in a benign
environment. For example, we could not send the two Hercules aircraft to Haiti last year for several days while the
French went in first and secured the airfield. In the northern hemisphere, we suspect that the Americans would prefer
Canadians to go in and do that work rather than a European power.
Senator Banks: When you talk about Canadian Forces acting independently, that is new because they have never
acted independently of our allies before.
Mr. Gimblett: That is right but they have never needed to do that before. Throughout the Cold War, which was the
bulk of our military experience, we went everywhere with NATO. The three services had distinct roles within NATO,
which was entirely fine for the major concept of operations. That changed when the Berlin Wall fell and we entered
what other analysts are calling an ``era of stabilization.'' You cannot always rely on NATO to be the lead force. They
eventually got around to taking over in Afghanistan but that was not assured until long after we had become involved.
In Iraq, there is a certain amount of dithering about the Canadian Forces becoming fully involved. Frankly, the United
States cannot be everywhere; there are limits even to the amount of power that the United States Armed Forces can
project. There is any number of places where it would be in keeping with Canadian interests to become involved in
conducting an independent operation without the Americans having to prepare the reception for us.
Senator Banks: I should be quick to say that I did not mean that Canadian Forces have not operated under
independent Canadian control. However, we have never gone to war by ourselves in that we have entered into war in
the context of our allies.
How much sense does it make to concentrate that force that we will land on some far-flung foreign shore in one
ship, given the capability that asymmetrical forces now have to work grave injury upon such a thing. We could loss a
battalion and all its equipment on one ship. Do we have to take that risk?
Mr. Gimblett: Yes. We have taken that kind of risk before, for example, with the battalions sent to Kabul,
Afghanistan. Camp Julian was right in the middle of a hostile situation. We were lucky that it did not end in disaster.
We were probably members of the first army ever to go into Afghanistan that was not kicked out with its tail between
its legs. The entire army staff was worried about sending in 1,000 plus troops without a clear exit strategy. It went off
well but we cannot guarantee that every time.
The idea of concentrating all in one ship creates a risk, but that ship will not go there on its own. It would still
require an attendant force of frigates, submarines and maritime aircraft to lend support. That ship would not go there
alone. The focus of the Canadian navy will shift from blue water anti-submarine operations to littoral anti-submarine
The Chairman: To clarify the supplementary to Senator Banks' question and your last comment, the concern is with
situations such as the GTS Katie where such a significant proportion of Canadian assets were effectively tied up. It is
the very ideaof 25 per cent of our army's combat capability being on one vessel, which also carries Av gas, ammunition
and other explosives. The committee has real reservations about the thoughtfulness of this situation. Perhaps there is
logic in considering other alternatives whereby the loss would be spread out in the event of an attack. We cannot help
but think of the USS Cole and how effective an Exocet missile can be against a ship.
Mr. Gimblett: Attacks against ships are incredibly ineffective. The attack on the USS Cole killed only, and I say
``only'' with grave reservations for the people who died, one dozen sailors. Ships, especially larger ones, are incredibly
resistant to damage.
Senator Stollery: What about the HMS Sheffield?
Mr. Gimblett: Yes, but the danger there was that you had a ship that was made out of aluminium, and the fire got
burning so hot that the aluminium burned. People have learned a lot about building warships and the containment of
damage since then. It takes a lot to sink a warship, quite truthfully.
Senator Meighen: You were talking with Senator Banks about inoperability, which means largely with the United
States navy and to a somewhat lesser degree, with the navies of our NATO allies. You were also talking about the
concept of where it might be advisable and welcome for Canada, through its naval force, to exercise some sort of
projection on its own. You gave the example of Haiti. To what degree does increasing interoperability, primarily with
the United States, hamper, and restrict the ability to act independently when circumstances warrant; or does it?
Mr. Gimblett: I would say not at all. In fact, it increases our ability to exercise independently and to take
independent commands. Our navy has a unique relationship with the United States navy, even better than any of the
other NATO allies, the British or even the Australians, who have become close with the U.S. navy.
The U.S. navy has to share a certain level of codes, procedures and equipment with our navy because we are
committed to the joint defence of North America. That is a unique relationship that they do not have with any other
navy in the world, and no one will ever get that relationship. The Americans have to share with us. They only share to a
certain level, because they still have their national responsibilities, but we have access to codes, procedures and
equipment that no one else will ever get.
That access is what gave our Canadian commodores the capability to take charge of the coalition fleets in the
Arabian Sea. It was because we could still communicate with the United States navy at a high level that they asked us
to take charge of these other people who cannot get into that level of communication with them. We acted as a kind of
a gateway, taking the information from the Americans and passing it on to the other navies. The other navies could not
contribute directly to the offensive operations that the U.S. navy was undertaking, and as a result the U.S. was happy
to have us pass on the information.
Other nations tend to send warships to hot spots, just as we do, and you get quite a collection of ships that gather at
sea. Someone needs to take charge of all of them for efficiency and safety. We have developed quite a niche role in
taking command of all these other nations, which fits in with our multilateral instincts. Frankly, the Americans do not
share that instinct.
The U.S. does not appreciate the level to which the Canadian navy has been a coalition builder, keeping coalitions
together in the war against terrorism. When the Americans got distracted by Iraq they essentially turned their backs on
everyone else. If we had not been there, they would not have had the collection of flags needed in the continuing war
against terrorism; Operation Enduring Freedom as opposed to Operation Iraqi Freedom. We played an essential role
in keeping that global coalition against global terrorism going at a critical juncture.
Senator Meighen: One wonders sometimes whether the Americans notice or care, because they can do it all
themselves. Sometimes, for political reasons perhaps, it is helpful to have other nations involved.
This is all part of the growing technological gap. If the Americas have come to the conclusion that it is better to
operate on their own, it is like the old principle of delegation; teaching people how to do something takes more time
than doing it yourself. Again, we are in deep water here.
Mr. Gimblett: Frankly, the Americans are like that, unless they are told otherwise. Even our own government did
not realize the importance of the command role our navy played in the Arabian Sea. If the Prime Minister cannot take
that to the U.S. President and say, ``You do not think we are supporting you in certain direct combat operations that
we have trouble with, rightly or wrongly, but we are doing other good stuff.'' I suspect that argument was not used
because it was not appreciated by our government.
Senator Meighen: We certainly failed to convey it, I agree with you. We have heard a lot of talk about the proposed
injection of 5,000 new members of regular forces and 3,000 reservists, though we discovered a while ago that the funds
needed for that recruitment have not been cleared, and as a result nothing has happened. If it does happen, have you
any idea how the 5,000 new recruits will be divided between the three branches of the services?
Mr. Gimblett: I suspect the majority will go to the army, and rightly so. The army has been operating with under-
strength battalions and regiments for the better part of the last decade. As they went through different reorganizations,
they kept the line organizations up, but effectively they have cut a company out of each.
Senator Meighen: Is there somewhere the navy really needs an injection?
Mr. Gimblett: The navy needs an injection of sailors, but not that many unless we take on a new class of ships.
However, even a lot of that you could work through with a redistribution amongst the fleet. Probably fewer than 1,000
would be in the range of what the navy would need, but I would hope we would get around to a bigger buildup of the
Armed Forces over time.
Where the navy is critically short of people is in the higher trades and skilled trades such as electronics operators.
They are not unique in that; other services are short as well. However, these 5,000 coming in will be ordinary foot
soldiers and bosuns for the first several years of their service.
Senator Meighen: As someone who has specialized in the navy, can you give us your succinct assessment of our
undersea capability? Where do we sit with the submarine program? How necessary is such a program, and can the
present program be salvaged and made beneficial for the country?
Mr. Gimblett: I appeared before the House committee last week on that topic, so you can refer to their testimony.
The succinct answer is the HMCS Victoria acquisition was a good acquisition, and it can be made operational with the
dedication of a rather limited amount of money, time and resources. I think it was a good purchase, and those subs will
give us exceptional service when they become fully operational.
Senator Atkins: How?
Mr. Gimblett: They need time. This is a good example of what happens to a service when it loses a capability. This is
why I am concerned about any talk of taking on niche roles and discarding capabilities. It takes a long time to relearn
skills once they are lost.
We came close, in the late-1990s, to losing our submarine service. It has been a decade now since we have had a
proper submarine service going to sea and performing operational tasks. The few submariners we had in the early
1990s were very good; they were entirely professional, but people get older, they get promoted, they rise through the
ranks and they are no longer in the lower ranks. We have, in fact, a practically new submarine service now, with very
little experience in it. The older fellows on board the boats are good, but they have lost the opportunity to provide the
on-the-job training to cycle in the new guys as they become available. With time and patience, our navy can retransmit
that experience to the junior ranks and bring the people along, but you cannot just snap your fingers and expect it to
Senator Atkins: We have four subs; if they were all operational, what would be their mission?
Mr. Gimblett: I think the present distribution of two on each coast is good. They should be involved in surveillance
activities, in patrols off our coast, and be ready to go off on expeditionary operations with the rest of the task group as
a vital part of that task group when we send them on foreign deployments.
There is a proliferation of submarine technology throughout the rest of the world. In Canada, we are agonizing over
the acquisition of four submarines. Every other nation in the world with a sea-going navy is acquiring submarines at
exponentially higher numbers than we are. Anywhere we deploy the Canadian navy it will potentially encounter a
hostile submarine threat.
Last week I testified before another committee and gave four examples from Operation Apollo of which I was aware
where our navy encountered foreign submarines in the waters. In one example, they were keeping an eye on the Iranian
Kilo class submarines, whose mission is to close the Strait of Hormuz.
On another occasion, an unknown submarine contact appeared near the American carrier battle group. The
American cruisers and destroyers could not identify the contact, so they called in the Canadian frigate. The HMCS
Halifax identified it very quickly with the use of active and passive sonar and escorted the submarine out of the area. It
was a Pakistani submarine that had become lost and wondered out of its agreed area. With the high value of the
American carriers, people get edgy when there is unknown submarine contact.
The Chairman: We understand that there are 48 nations with diesel electrics. We understand that it is a relatively
inexpensive platform that is very destabilizing elsewhere. Our main concern has more to do with personnel and the
reports that this committee has received that there will not be a sufficient number of submariners to man the four
vessels by the time they do become operational. We are concerned that we cannot catch up with the training and that
the skills are so critical that the vessels will not be operational.
Can you comment on that situation?
Mr. Gimblett: My main comment is that the number of capable submariners will remain low unless you dedicate the
money, time and resources to increase the size of the forces and provide enough sailors to those submarines.
The Chairman: The intervening step is time. We can create money and resources, but regardless of how much money
you throw at it, it still takes a number of years before people become qualified.
Mr. Gimblett: Absolutely, but what is the alternative? Should we scrap the service entirely and then have to restart it
when there is a more obvious threat that needs to be met?
The Chairman: How much time do you believe will lapse before we have an adequate cadre of submariners?
Mr. Gimblett: I am not an expert in that field but I would estimate four or five years.
Senator Forrestall: This is a very interesting discussion. I want to throw in another class of vessels challenged not
with niche identification but with looking after the Canadian coastline. We have given some consideration to what we
might do with the Canadian Coast Guard. There is a suggestion that it could be hived from its parent, Transport
Canada, and be reconfigured for coastal marine activity.
This committee is quite used to my suggestion that you do not need to go all that far. In Halifax, St. John and every
substantial centre in Canada we have a stood-down reserve force. In Halifax it happens to be the oldest in the nation,
the Halifax Rifles. A militia unit could be retrained and ready to go within a year, certainly long before we could
design, build and put into operation the type of vessel that could operate in a 10-foot draft with a slightly strengthened
hull that could accommodate perhaps 25 men and women, fulfilling a task of border patrol.
Have you any thoughts on how we can maintain the safety and security of our borders?
Mr. Gimblett: There is incredible merit to that idea. We need better protection of our coasts, however, I am leery
about putting the Coast Guard and the navy together.
Senator Forrestall: I did not suggest that. Let me back up. This is critically important, and I share what you are
about to say.
We have talked about imbuing the Coast Guard with its own legislative authority, perhaps similar structure-wise to
that of the RCMP, so that it would be separate from everything else. This new Coast Guard would report to the
government perhaps through the Minister of National Defence, and would stand on its own as a Canadian Coast
Guard, not perform just channel work, buoy laying and ice breaking.
Mr. Gimblett: Yes, a real Coast Guard. You are really proposing a naval militia, which I think is a good role for an
expanded naval reserve. There is a place for that type of ship, and it could perform many of the anticipated roles in our
home water at much less expense.
The problem comes down to getting the right type of ship and the right type of manning for it. A fast little ship to
get in and out of little coves is great when the weather is decent, but the majority of the time they will be patrolling
when the water is very rough, which requires a big ship that has a steady platform in order to be effective.
You need only look at the maritime coastal defence vessels that we currently have. Those are ineffective military
vessels, but they were not acquired for that role; they were acquired as the lead to a mine-sweeping force that would
have operated in relatively enclosed waters.
You need a bigger vessel. A number of offshore patrol vessel design concepts are currently being looked at that have
possibilities for other roles.
I am still uneasy about getting a vessel for a niche role because that would mean that the follow-on for the frigates is
unlikely to occur in a reasonable time. I say that because if the navy received that money, it would be the army or the
air forces' turn to receive money for a pet project.
There are a number of designs that could be looked at for a follow-on to the frigate that would allow the speed and
the shallow draft needed to get into the coastal areas. The trimaran and catamaran designs would allow a decent-sized
helicopter deck on the back, which is absolutely essential for our patrols. You could incorporate varying sizes of crews
and put modular packages into these types of ships.
The Chairman: On the same subject, one thing we are considering is that providing a constabulary role to these
individuals is not compatible with the reserve function. We recognize that to patrol the banks you need a vessel the size
of a frigate. The cutter would be the size of a frigate. It would be less expensive because there is not the same
requirement for gear inside, but it would have the same steel hull. In the ports and closer to the shore, obviously
different platforms would be required. We are talking essentially about a separate arm. Admiral Buck expressed a
concern when he appeared before this committee. He did not articulate it in exactly the way that I will but he seemed to
lack enthusiasm for the idea. He was concerned that it would come out of funding that would otherwise go for
replacements for destroyers or replacements for frigates.
If the request was to come from a different department and not come out of the navy's kitty would you see any merit
in that plan?
Mr. Gimblett: Absolutely yes. In fact, that was the concern that I just expressed. If you put this requirement up
against a replacement for a frigate or a destroyer as part of the navy's money, I would be inclined not to support it. If
the requirement was seen as part of the general security of Canada and, perhaps, taken from another department,
absolutely yes, it would have merit. There is also the question of the Rush-Baggot Agreement on the Great Lakes.
Mr. Gimblett: The Rush-Baggot Agreement has been amended many times over the years, officially and unofficially.
I believe the Americans would support the avenue that you wish to explore.
The Chairman: Would we need to amend it to put the Coast Guard there?
Mr. Gimblett: No.
Senator Forrestall: I appreciate the chair's supplementary question. Might I call upon you to busy yourself with your
colleagues in Halifax and write a description of the size of a cutter, 40 to 50 metres and 3,000 tonnes or so, large
enough to sustain at sea for a couple of weeks in waters that are usually quite rough?
Mr. Gimblett, Vice Admiral MacLean told the committee last week that when it comes to naval forces, quantity
provides a quality of its own. Do you agree? Does that apply to Canada's navy?
Mr. Gimblett: It is interesting that Vice Admiral MacLean would quote Joseph Stalin, but I think he is quite right.
Quantity does have a quality all its own. The term that the navy is beginning to utilize is ``capacity,'' which combines
the elements of quantity and quality.
Obviously, one dozen frigates can be employed in more places for a longer period of time than four frigates can be
employed. There is a rule of four uses in the military: For every four of any kind of equipment or personnel that you
have, you have one available for operations at any given time because the others are in training or refit or on leave.
The more you have of something, the more you can employ it and the more opportunities you will have to employ it.
The quality of that equipment speaks to how effective it is when it is being employed. You would require a higher
degree of quality for ships deployed to the far side of the world than you would require for those deployed in home
waters because, obviously, the threat level is lower in home waters. The quantity in home waters would not have to be
of the same quality, which speaks to the idea of the Coast Guard taking over the role suggested by this committee.
Senator Forrestall: You will understand why we jump all over the place because time is catching up to us, as it
Is there any need for us to give serious consideration to the concept of sea locks for the protection of our sea lanes,
like the old concepts of the Cold War?
Mr. Gimblett: Yes, there is, but that is a direct fallout of any level of naval capability that we have nearing our
present level. As I said, we are part of the maritime coalition that won freedom of the seas. We helped to established it,
and then fought in the Second World War and were ready to fight through the Cold War to maintain it. We are a
continuing member of that coalition. We have an interest in maintaining the freedom of navigation on the high seas.
Senator Forrestall: Does that include the North?
Mr. Gimblett: Yes, it includes the North.
Senator Forrestall: Would you resurrect the Polar 8?
Mr. Gimblett: There are arguments as to whether you would have to resurrect it depending where you stand on the
theories of global warming. I fall in with the group that believes the Northwest Passage will become navigable, for at
least a portion of each year, within the next decade. What level of presence and response you want to establish in that
area is important, and it is a political decision.
Senator Forrestall: We want to establish a presence that has a legal capacity. In other words, we would want a ship
with a courthouse, a hospital, a library, et cetera, in place at all times and bring it home only to take it out of the water
to clean its bottom.
Mr. Gimblett: There is one capability that is under appreciated in the new joint support ship. By definition, that class
of vessel would be capable of going through first-year ice with the double hull requirements and the size. It would not
be an ice breaker but capable of going through first-year ice. It would establish presence just by having an occasional
patrol to organize coastal transfers of ships going through the Northwest Passage instead of through the Panama
Canal. That kind of activity — using our own water — would be more practicable than rebuilding the Polar 8.
Senator Forrestall: Perhaps it would be much cheaper.
Mr. Gimblett: It definitely would be cheaper.
Senator Forrestall: Thank you for your work. Your papers have been enormously helpful to the committee. They
have been required reading for the last year or so for most members of the committee.
Senator Atkins: Mr. Gimblett, we have not talked about funding. In your estimate, what do you think it would take
to maintain the navy in terms of maintenance and upgrading in its present form compared to what you envision in the
Mr. Gimblett: I am not good with numbers that have dollar signs in front of them, senator. I am not in the best
position to respond to such a question. I say jokingly to my friends that I married an accountant so that I do not have
to deal with money. I would trust Vice Admiral MacLean's and Admiral Buck's advice.
I know the navy is operating on a deficit that has ranged between $150 million and $300 million over the past
number of years. I have friends who are in command of frigates that are tied up at dock because they cannot get into
the fleet maintenance facility for basic maintenance. To what degree that level of maintenance is considered in the
$150-million shortfall, I am not aware. The navy needs extra capacity and I would ask you to trust the navy's figures in
Senator Atkins: As you know, this committee has recommended that there be an influx of $4 billion, to start. Do you
have any comment on what is required for the military to make it a viable, responsible and effective force?
Mr. Gimblett: I have read your reports and I trust your analysis that $4 billion is closer to the amount needed than
the $750 million that is likely to appear in the budget this week. I do not know the precise amount.
The Canadian Forces say they are working on an operating deficit of $1.6 billion per year. Even one-half of that
amount would improve the situation and stem the decline to meet the operating deficit.
The fleet maintenance facility still has the capacity on each coast to work on two ships only at one time. There are
six or so major warships on each coast that need work at any given time. There is not enough capacity and it needs to
be spread out or built up in another way.
Senator Atkins: You mentioned that even if the government were to begin the process of taking on another 5,000
members of the military, most of them would go to the army. There has been talk that the army should be enlarged at
the expense of the navy and the air force. Do you have any comment on that subject?
Mr. Gimblett: I think that would be a mistake and it would be done, as I suggested, without a full appreciation of the
roles that the air force and the navy also perform. I am in favour of an expansion of the entire forces to 80,000, which
your committee has suggested. That is probably closer to the ultimate amount needed.
The Chairman: The number we were after was 75,000 effective, which probably means 90 plus total.
Mr. Gimblett: Precisely. That could not happen in just a couple of years. That would have to be a phased intake. The
Canadian Forces has not been able to handle all the recruits they have taken in during the last couple of years.
Senator Atkins: Would the navy have the infrastructure to absorb additional people?
Mr. Gimblett: The infrastructure is there. There are empty bunks in the ships, if you can get the ships to sea. Right
now the ships can not go to sea, so there are enough sailors to spread around amongst the ships that can go to sea.
Senator Atkins: In your view, what are the most critical threats facing Canada at the present time?
Mr. Gimblett: International terrorism is a major concern. I fall in with the counter-argument, though, that you have
to take a look at the actual risk and threat to individual Canadians. It is a relatively low threat when you look at the
damage that international terrorism actually can do to individual Canadians.
There have been several analyses published about the damage that international terrorism can do to our economic
system. A dirty bomb going off in an American port has the potential to collapse both of our economies. Such a
weapon detonated under the Detroit Bridge would have a disastrous effect on our economy and the Americans'
economy. We have a continued interest in making sure that those sorts of threats, however small or remote, are not
allowed to happen.
The other major threat is the general instability in the world. Another argument that is developing significant weight
nowadays is that we have a continued interest in helping the rest of the world become part of our global economy. This
is usually disguised as Canadian values, and that it is important for us to go off and help people in Africa and Asia to
put down trouble and instability in their areas. It is really part of our interest to ensure that stability is extended to
those remote areas of the world because it will bring them into the wider global economy.
Senator Atkins: Are we vigilant enough in the protection of our ports?
Mr. Gimblett: I am not an expert on port security, but I would say probably not.
Senator Atkins: Are we vigilant enough in the protection of our harbours?
Mr. Gimblett: There is very little security there, so I would say that it is not nearly enough.
The Chairman: Mr. Gimblett, you talked a moment ago about the absolute threat to Canadians from terrorists as
being relatively low if you compared it to car accidents or things like that. Then you moved from threats to Canadian
How should this committee communicate Canadian interests, such as stability, to Canadians? Could you assist us in
Mr. Gimblett: I would love to be able to do so. If anybody could, they would have the silver bullet to all of our
problems. Unfortunately, I am no better at that than others who have come before you, other than to state that there
are threats, they seem intangible, but the risk of allowing them to occur is just one that we cannot afford to take.
The Chairman: We have a silver bullet award. We are prepared to even give out honourable mentions to it. This is
the challenge that faces all of the people in your line of work and in our line of work. Why not give it a shot?
Mr. Gimblett: I will answer it in a round about way by referring you to a very interesting book that I have just
finished reading.It is called The Pentagon's New Map: War and Peace in the Twenty-First Century by Thomas Barnett,
who was a professor at the United States Naval War College and worked in the Pentagon's Office of Force
Senator Banks: Does he talk about Northcom and other homeland defence strategies?
Mr. Gimblett: Not by name, only indirectly. His book is the most cogent analysis of the world situation right now.
He describes, as I alluded to just a few moments ago, the world separated into two large tracks: The ``functioning core''
of which we, Canada and the United States, the functioning global economy are a part and then the disconnected
others that he calls ``the gap.'' He mapped out these different countries and the gap just happens to coincide with all the
areas of instability where U.S. forces and, by extension, our forces have deployed over the past decade. I would
encourage you to read his book. He gives the best analysis for understanding today's world and speaking to the need to
bring the non-functioning gap into part of the functioning core and in there lays our ultimate stability.
Senator Banks: I am going to return to your Sea Horse proposal, partly because it is titillating and interesting. It
foresees something that Canada has not done for a long time, and that is storming troops ashore in an unfriendly
situation where they are being opposed. Do I have that right?
Mr. Gimblett: We are not talking about storming beaches, but we are seeing many more situations that are a step
above the benign environment that the joint support ship is designed to meet. It will not be storming fortified beaches
like Juno Beach or Okinawa frankly because there are not many conditions like that in the world. However, there are a
number of areas where there is a slightly higher level of opposition than could effectively be met by a joint support ship.
Senator Banks: You do not think we will have to put forces ashore?
Mr. Gimblett: They will be opposed but it will be by a relatively lower level of violence. I will mention Haiti as a
good example, where the airport was unavailable to Canadian Hercules transports until somebody assumed control of
it. Somebody had to and it was because they landed forces that were prepared to meet the lower level of violence there.
The Haitian opposition or insurgents who had taken over did not have heavy tanks and heavy anti-aircraft weapons at
That sort of situation could be met quite reasonably by a force of armed soldiers being taken ashore by heavy
armoured helicopters or landed by a landing craft against an undefended beach. They have to be prepared to meet and
project violence when they land, and they have to be taken to the area where they are being deployed in fighting order
so that when they disembark from the ship they are prepared to undertake operations immediately.
Senator Banks: Would you subscribe to the view that Canadian or any other peacekeepers need to be able to be war
Mr. Gimblett: Absolutely.
Senator Banks: We have just had an argument on a previous matter, about names not meaning anything. Would you
call the troops marines? Would you call them royal marines?
I know you have been at great pains to say we are not talking about obviating the army and replacing them with
marines, but these people are marines, are they not?
Mr. Gimblett: Marines or sea soldiers, but I would say they are not United States marines. When you say marines,
people get the image of United States marines storming beaches, and we are at pains to use the word marines precisely
to avoid that image. Royal marines is actually a better use of the term.
Senator Banks: The royal marines, in fact, went ashore and ended a lot of slave camps. They did so in circumstances
which, given the time, would be almost exactly like you described — opposition, but opposition that was
Mr. Gimblett: I have no problem with just calling them soldiers. The Canadian soldier is smart enough, and well
trained enough to handle learning to live in a ship for a couple of weeks and then climbing into a landing craft and
getting out of it comfortably.
Senator Banks: As they have many times in the past in places in which Canadian soldiers have distinguished
themselves, but these soldiers are going to be sea soldiers. Given the nature of the kind of operation that you are
talking about would it not make sense that these sea soldiers should be under the command of the navy?
Mr. Gimblett: No.
Senator Banks: Would you have a general saying I want you to go to the back of the ship?
Mr. Gimblett: No, and I think this is where Gen. Hillier is spot on in looking at this as an integrated force that he is
planning to develop. He envisions all of these people working together. You can have a sailor in command of the
overall operation; just look at the Falklands war. The British commander of the war in the Falklands was a sailor;
Admiral Woodward was in overall command of the operation. He had a royal marine officer and a British army officer
working for him. It does not matter who commands the overall operation as long as you have the right people with the
right background there to advise the overall commander.
I do not think it needs to be a navy commander. You will still need an army commander of the troops. Whether you
embark him as the overall force commander is another question. I would suspect the overall force commander should
still be a naval officer because you are talking about a sea-based operation.
Senator Banks: Just take a moment to confirm the word ``integration'' in the sense that you have just used it. It
strikes Paul Hellyer and green uniforms fear into the hearts of people. You do not mean that, do you?
Mr. Gimblett: I do not mean it in the Paul Hellyer sense; I mean it in General Hillier sense. In fact, even if Paul
Hellyer had followed the logic of his own argument, he really meant it in the sense that General Hillier means it: a
fighting force working together.
He had a number of things working against him. First of all, the NATO concept of operations was such that there
was no need for an integrated Canadian Forces at the time that came out. He also had budgets working against him;
there was not enough money given to realize the project at that time.
Senator Banks: Comment if you would briefly on the present usefulness of looking at the 1994 White Paper as
regards to the protections and the ideas that you are now talking about going forward?
Mr. Gimblett: I think the main ideas in the 1994 White Paper were not bad as basic concepts. It was just never
funded.The 1994 White Paper called for a navy with task groups on both coasts, and that is what we had. However, the
money was not given to keep them up to speed. It recognized that the army would probably be involved in more
operations, which the army has been. It just was not funded properly to have enough people to do all those operations
and give them enough equipment to do it.
As a basic planning document, it is not bad. I will bet you that any new document would come out looking much the
same. In fact, I have done an historical study of all the white papers on defence that have ever been done in Canada,
and they revolve around the same three basic themes: defence of Canada, defence of North America, and ensuring
international stability. We just shift the priorities at any time, depending on the precise situation.
Any new paper should have those three fundamental priorities. It is just now, in the globalized world that we are in,
that they seem to be occurring all at once. That means you cannot take them and shift them from one area to another,
you have to be able to meet all three at once. To me that means more people and more equipment.
Senator Banks: Is that a nice connection between the power projection that you are talking about on the one hand
andthe 3-D concept that we hear about.
Mr. Gimblett: Absolutely; I think it is just different ways of expressing the same sort of thing. You are talking about
values or interests. You can have semantic arguments on those words, but I think they fundamentally come down to
much the same thing.
Another thought comes to mind when Senator Kenny had said earlier that he was concerned about all of our
resources being caught in one vessel. The answer to that is if you have a force of 80,000, you would obviously have
more than one vessel. Hopefully, you would have at least three or four. Again, itis 25 per cent all in one for the amount
that you fit in one ship. You are not going to have the entire army sitting in three or four ships. You would still need
the strategic airlift that you have been talking about to fly in additional troops once the airfield has been secured.
The beauty of a LPD, landing platform dock-sized vessel,as opposed to a joint support ship, is a LPD can carry,
whether you are looking at British or American designs, between700-800 fighting troops. That is a pretty effective
battalion. That is what you need to go in and establish a presence. That sort of number would be able to establish
control in the majority of places where we would want to deploy.
Senator Meighen: Just following on the LPD, landing platform dock, the paper that you wrote, in co-operation with
General MacKenzie and others, dates back to when?
Mr. Gimblett: June 2004 was the date of publication.
Senator Meighen: Have there been any developments that have caused you to change your mind or refine your view
as to what specific ship is required to constitute this LPD? You referred to the American San Antonio classes. Do I take
it that is still, in your view, the best one we could purchase?
Mr. Gimblett: I would think it is, but the type we should actually get is best left to the Canadian Forces' material
acquisition staffs. Let them make the decision.
Senator Meighen: That is a novel thought.
Mr. Gimblett: If you ask me, I would say the San Antonio. In fact, a situation has arisen that would speak in favour
of acquiring one of them somehow. It does not necessarily need to be a purchase, but the U.S. navy has just discovered
that they are building too many of those ships. They had a dozen laid down and they are facing a budget cutback as
well. However, they can afford to only man 11 of the 12 that they are taking on now. They still have a number of other
ships, but they are slowing down their acceptance of the new ships because the American forces are directing monies to
the army and marines, who are actually on the ground fighting in Iraq and other places.
The opportunity is that they have ships being built that they cannot man as fast as they would like to. They are
slowing down the production. I believe General MacKenzie told you that he could call up his friend Colin Powell and
arrange for one of those to come our way fairly easily. He has told me the same thing in more detail. I suspect he
probably is right. That would argue in favour of that; but again, I would not want to preclude the acquisition of any
other ships. There are a number of very good designs that are available right now.
Senator Meighen: Would you preclude the development and construction on our own of such a ship?
Mr. Gimblett: Absolutely.
Senator Meighen: You would favour purchasing off the shelf?
Mr. Gimblett: Yes; if possible, to be built in Canada. However, to try to design and produce our own just adds years
to the process, and I think we need to get ready to take one on now.
The Chairman: I would like to thank you very much for appearing before us. We found your testimony to be of great
assistance to our committee.
I noted you started on the budget and you concluded on the budget. It is very much on our minds, and we will all be
watching very carefully as it comes down this week to see how the government is responding to the arguments that
have been put forward.
The committee continued in camera.
The committee resumed in public
I call the meeting to order. Welcome to the Standing Senate Committee on National Security and Defence.
We have before us today two distinguished witnesses.Mr. Albert Legault holds a senior Canada research chair in
international relations at the Université du Québec à Montréal. As part of the security and defence forum he is a
member of the department of political science and the centre d'études des politiques étrangères et de sécurité. From
1969 to December 2001, Professor Legault taught at Laval University, where he was the Director of the Quebec
Institute for International Relations from 1997 to 2001. One of his latest works is a collection that he edited in 2004
entitled Canada in the American Orbit.
We also before us today Mr. Paul Heinbecker, the inaugural Director of the Centre for Global Relations,
Government and Policy, Wilfrid Laurier University in Waterloo, and a senior research fellow at the Independent
Research Centre for International Governance Innovation in Waterloo. These appointments follow a distinguished
career with Foreign Affairs Canada. From 1989 to 1992, Mr. Heinbecker served as former Prime Minister Brian
Mulroney's Chief Foreign Policy Advisor and Assistant Cabinet Secretary for Foreign and Defence Policy in the Privy
Council Office. In 1992, he was named Ambassador to Germany. In 2000, he was appointed Ambassador and
permanent representative of Canada to the United Nations. Welcome to the committee, gentlemen. Mr. Legault,
Mr. Albert Legault, Professor, Université du Québec à Montréal: I hope that committee members will not object if I
The Chairman: Not at all.
Mr. Legault: It is an honour and a privilege for me to be here. Many thanks for this invitation. In my brief
presentation, I will attempt to focus on three dimensions of the Canada-U.S. relations paradigm.
First of all, I would like to point out that I am interested in three specific dimensions. The first is what I call the
affect dimension, in other words, the sympathy that we naturally feel for the United States in emergencies. Examples
include providing assistance to civil authorities and the events of September 11 that forced Canada to open its borders
to planes traveling to the United States and to take in thousands of passengers. The affect dimension is very important
to understand, because it has nothing to do with the other dimension that is much more conceptual. We have defined
the affect dimension as the realm of organic solidarity. It is important to understand this dimension, as organic
solidarity is defined in the brief presentation I gave you as consisting of implementing pre-planned immediate measures
in one country in order to be able to respond to an emergency in another. To me, this dimension seems to play an
increasingly important role in Canada-U.S. relations, as we are part of a security perimeter. The Minister of Foreign
Affairs does not seem to really like that expression, since he uses the expression ``intelligent border,'' a very different
The second dimension is much more cognitive. It is a way for Canada to differentiate itself from U.S. foreign policy.
Just two weeks ago, American Ambassador Paul Cellucci said, at a conference being held in New York, that the U.S.
did not object to Canada having an independent policy, but that it must complement the U.S. policy. And someone on
a committee responded that it would be wonderful for the opposite to be true, in other words for American policy to
complement Canadian policy.
There are two very clear schools of thought in Canada, and they are discussed in the book that you quoted. They
include continentalists and sovereignists. Sovereignists will always say no to the United States, whereas continentalists
will say yes. People who are between the two will say yes depending on the circumstances. Generally speaking, Canada
is quite continentalist but only when that is beneficial to it.
The way Canada conceptualizes its foreign policy or its defence policy depends essentially on where Canada wants
to be, and that is the problem with Canada's conceptualization. Douglas Bland, a renowned expert, stated that Canada
has never had any defence policy other than that defined by NATO.
Since the Cold War, this definition problem is increasingly difficult, which is somewhat normal. Douglas Bland was
undoubtedly what we could call Canada's first Gaullist defence or foreign policy strategist. He asked the questions:
What are your interests? What should Canada do, and where should Canada get involved? I will come back to that
point later during the discussion, as the problem is an interesting one. There are huge differences in Canada and the
cognitive dimension is essentially linked to the issue of national identity, in other words how we can define ourselves
first and foremost as Canadian before dealing with the American issue.
The third element is what I call the political will dimension. You will undoubtedly get into a much more specific
discussion of this in a few moments with my colleague Mr. Heinbecker who is a foreign affairs expert. For my part, I
am speaking as an academic, but we can come back to that later on in the discussion.
The problem of political will, as shown in the table you have in front of you, is that potential tension always exists.
An issue of political will is a budget issue. There is always tension between defence and foreign policy initiatives and the
government's other social or socioeconomic priorities. As with the cognitive dimension, the question is to what degree
we should differentiate ourselves from U.S. foreign policy. Tensions can exist in the second case, in the cognitive
dimension. Other tensions exist with respect to the first dimension, called organic security, between defence as such and
national security. I think your committee is perfectly aware that when you deal with airport security or port security in
Canada, you are dealing with national security. When we discuss the role of Canada abroad, we are talking about
defence or foreign policy.
Those are the three points that I wanted to highlight. In conclusion, I think that at the international level, Canada
must develop a strategic/tactical lift capability, develop synergy between different departments on peace-building
operations, and prepare for integrated planning of its operations, with NATO, the EU, with like-minded countries, or
any ad hoc coalition that may arise in the future.
At the national level, Canada must extend the NORAD concept of air and space operations to the maritime
domain. That is part not only of intelligent borders, but also offshore protection functions, in other words, pushing
borders as far away as possible. There needs to be better integration of NORAD space operations and maritime
Secondly, I recommend increasing the level of interoperability of American and Canadian Forces, and improving
the survivability of our command and communications systems.
That, in a nutshell, is my presentation. I hope that I have not gone on too long.
The Chairman: Not in the least. Thank you for your presentation.
Mr. Heinbecker, please proceed.
Mr. Paul Heinbecker, Former Ambassador to the United Nations, as an individual: I have a few more points to make
but I will make them equally brief. Thank you for inviting me, it is an honour and privilege to be here.
The first point is there is an absolute need for coherence in Canadian foreign policy, and by that I mean the policy of
the Canadian government not the foreign affairs department. Foreign policy is the combination of defence policy,
foreign assistance policy, diplomacy work done on national security by CSIS, RCMP and others, environment
department, finance department and everyone else. Canada is not a big enough country that we can afford to have
several foreign policies. We can only afford one. It has to be crosscutting and not stovepipe-like and it has to be
integrated and coherent.
I have been asked to mention the issue of interests. The debate of values and interest is a sterile debate and people
evoke it when they want to make a point that they are more either moral or mercantile. We are the people we are and
we make the decisions we make because of who we are, because of our values. I observe that U.S. National Security
Strategy begins with a statement of American values. I do not think this is a very outrageous idea.
I think we need to go back to first principles on the UN. Debate occasionally takes place in this country about
whether we should throw in our lot with the Americans or whether we should go with multilateralism. The
fundamental issue is, if you remember how we got to the UN, quite important. We should not forget that. We started
with the industrialization and democratization of warfare, which led to alliances that led to the First World War and
10 million dead, which then led to the Second World War and nearly 60 million dead. The realists, the people who won
the Second World War, what Tom Brocaw called the ``greatest generation,'' created the UN Charter and put it at the
centre of international law, and created the system of collective security. They did that because they thought it was a
better way to proceed and no one wanted to find out how many would die in a Third World war in a world of weapons
of mass destruction.
The UN remains at the centre of international law and of multilateral cooperation. However, it is in need of reform
and that opportunity will come this fall at the UN when there will be a meeting of probably 100 heads of government.
If I were to describe the Canadian foreign policy posture, it would be comprised of two main points: Bilaterally, we
must be the best possible neighbour to the United States and partner in North American security. That means that we
have to integrate NORAD and coastal surveillance and border questions, et cetera. Internationally, we should run an
independent foreign policy. We should agree with the Americans when we think they are right and disagree with them
when we think they are wrong, as we did on Iraq. While we are hearing some better words and music from Washington
than we have for a while, there is a legacy with this administration that makes closer cooperation more difficult and
I am thinking of the way in which the U.S. misled the UN Security Council on the eve of the Iraq War. I am
thinking of the man who became the Attorney General as the one who gave the advice on how to chisel the torture
treaty and how to circumvent the Geneva Convention. I am thinking of the fact that this country runs a kind of gulag
of prisons abroad. I am thinking of the extraordinary rendition policy that sees the Americans taking people to places
like Syria, where they would be tortured. In my mind there is a limit as to how closely we want to be identified with that
kind of administration and how fast we want to turn the page from what we have seen.
In respect of the UN and NATO, I would say that NATO is becoming a kind of insurance policy. That has been
obvious for quite some time because you are bound in an organization such as NATO to ask who the enemy is and
where the threat is. It is not obvious in this case unless one wants to posit international Islamic extremists as a threat.
In that case, you have to ask whether NATO is a response to that threat. NATO is a kind of residual insurance policy
in case things go wrong.
I would like to see more Canadian participation in UN operations, if we believe in a policy of human security. We
have sponsored the report The Responsibility to Protect, which is at the heart of the UN reform process. To make that
real in a Canadian context, we have to be able to put boots on the ground. It is extremely important to invest in the
Armed Forces. I am not an expert on one service versus another service but I know that in my time as Ambassador to
the UN, we had to say no to the UN many times when they asked for assistance because we did not have the capability.
The promise of 5,000 more soldiers and 3,000 more reservists, assuming they are accompanied by enough gear to get
to where they are going and do what needs to be done, is positive.
Related to that on foreign policy is official development assistance. The UN report makes the case very persuasively
that these days the security development links are a continuum. If you are worried about what happens to failing
states, you had better not let that happen and begin to invest in them before that can happen. The Canadian
government could not make a stronger signal on this front than to commit itself to 0.7 per cent official development
assistance, ODA, by naming a date. The date it ought to name is 2015, which is the end of the millennium development
goals that have been established.
My last point is that we need a professional foreign service. There has been much talk in Ottawa, indeed even a
deprecation of the idea, of a professional foreign service. You cannot make your way in the world unless you have
professionals doing it. It should not be a monastery at Foreign Affairs but when you have people who understand the
world and spend a good part of their lives in the world that gives them a leg up on understanding and providing policy
advice to people who do not have that kind of experience.
Senator Atkins: It is truly an honour to have you both here today. I would like to pursue something that you
said,Mr. Heinbecker: There is a difference between government policy vis-à-vis foreign policy. Can you expand on
Mr. Heinbecker: I meant that the Government of Canada has a foreign policy. Neither Foreign Affairs Canada nor
National Defence has a foreign policy. Sometimes people lose sight that foreign policy is that of the Canadian
government; foreign affairs gives advice but so do other departments. Foreign affairs is the totality of what the
Canadian government thinks and what it is doing to achieve it; it is the foreign policy of the government and not of
particular parts of the government.
Senator Atkins: I would imagine that most Canadians would have thought they were one and the same.
Mr. Heinbecker: In Ottawa, the fact is sometimes lost.
Senator Atkins: You said that we need a professional foreign service. I think most Canadians believe that we have a
professional foreign service. Can you expand on that?
Mr. Heinbecker: There is a debate on that subject. There is one view around Ottawa that because the distinction
between international and domestic policy has tended to blur, we no longer need a professional foreign service and that
you can use any kind of public servant interchangeably.
We need people devoted to the international foreign service to spend a good part of their lives abroad so that we do
not take one person out of one job in Ottawa to go to Kabul and try to do a good job.
I am not making the argument that foreign service officers are somehow holier or better than other public servants
or vice versa, but there is a degree of experience needed to do the job well. If you do not have people spending the time
to learn the trade, you will handicap yourself in international relations.
Senator Atkins: Did we ever have a professional foreign service?
Mr. Heinbecker: I would say that it has been extremely professional since the days when it was first created until
now. Now, it is under a certain amount of attack and the idea that people who do a good job for DFO would be
equally qualified to do a job in Vietnam is in error.
Senator Atkins: Mr. Legault, you say that Canada knows it needs a foreign policy that serves its interests and reflects
the ambitions of its people. What do you think are Canadians' interests and ambitions? What are the implications of
this to defence and military policy?
Mr. Legault: I will begin by answering the second question first because it is easier. If we do not have a foreign
policy it will be very difficult to find out how the Canadian society coalesces around this policy. Since the Trudeau
review of foreign policy in the late 1960s, we have been trying to ascertain just what those interests are.
There is only one single Canadian interest; it is Canadian unity, to listen to what the people have to say and to look
at how we should act in a foreign environment. There have been, as Mr. Heinbecker has said, a number of difficulties
with the United States. Whether we turn the page and begin a new relationship or come up with a new North American
initiative which apparently is what the government has in mind, is debatable.
The one point we need is a foreign policy which reflects the government view. There has been a lot of discussion on
this particular area, especially in the Privy Council in making sure that the departments can come up with a common
vision of what our role in the world should be.
Mr. Heinbecker just mentioned the main dimension is foreign affairs, it is straight aid, foreign assistance aid, and
how best to intervene in the world with the number of failed states that we have today. The military situation in the
world is much more unstable than it used to be. There will be a lot more failed states in the future. This is perhaps a
niche where Canada should intervene.
What are our interests? John Holmes, who I am sure you have met or you have known, 24 years ago in the
American Assembly said if the United Nations did not exist we would have to invent it.
Canadians' interests lay in the rule of law, the ability to intervene on a multilateral way, and the respect of
international law because this is where we are at our best. I am not too optimistic about whether or not we will have the
ability to have our voice heard in Washington because even during the Korean War when we were spending more than
25 per cent of our federal budget on defence, we did not have more influence in Washington. The question is how to
The question is not so much, do you privilege multilateral institutions or do you behave unilaterally as the
Americans tend to do? The question is how we make effective international institutions. This is an important point for
the Foreign Affairs Canada. This is an important point for the future of Canada and this is where we find our national
They are general questions but your questions were also very general.
Senator Atkins: Absolutely. On that point, do you think we had any influence in view of the fact that we contributed
to the UN in Korea?
Mr. Legault: We certainly had influence as being recognized as a member of the international community but in
Korea the situation was perceived differently. There were two countries which produced a number of troops which
were very important to the alliance; Turkey and Canada. We lost an awful lot of people. It was a fair game at the time
and it was perceived as something which was worthwhile; we were there to defend democracy.
In my view, the Canadian government will come in favour of maintaining democracy in the world as the U.S. does,
except that sometimes we will have different means to look at those questions. I think we made the right decision in
Korea. It did cost lives but we were considered as a member of alliance and that is what counted at the time. We are
still a member of the alliance but we are a bit more mature than we were 40 years ago and we know a bit more about
where our interests are than at that time.
Senator Atkins: Mr. Heinbecker, you talk about UN reform and what you say is coming in September. Can you
comment on that? You said that you think Canada should have a bigger role in the UN. Could you tell us how you see
Mr. Heinbecker: Yes. The UN has been around since 1945 and over time, a contradiction has arisen in its most basic
tenets. The lead-in to the UN Charter says that the purpose of the UN is to save succeeding generations from the
scourge of war. The UN has actually done an extremely good job. It is not the only body responsible but it is done a
very good job. In the intervening years in the second half of the 20th century, there were 50 per cent fewer conflicts
than there were in the first half and there were four times as many countries. When the UN charter was adopted there
were 51 signatories, by the end of the 20th century there were about 190 members.
We had seen a great broadening of the UN and also the reduction of inter-state wars. Since the Cold War we have
also seen a greater proportion of intrastate wars, such as Congo which has actually been a mix, Darfur, East Timor,
Sierra Leone, Liberia and the Ivory Coast and other places.
That is where it runs into the second precept of the UN which is non-interference in the internal affairs of states. If
you were trying to prevent world wars, one of the ways of doing that is to try to proscribe aggression. The UN
established a very strong norm against aggression; one state against another. Internally we have seen more and more
conflict and the UN has been drawn into these conflicts because people say, ``Just do not stand there, do something. A
lot of people are dying.'' Bosnia is another example; Kosovo is a further example, some done with greater success than
A contradiction is there between saving succeeding generations from the scourge of war, and not interfering in the
internal affairs of states. This is the fundamental conundrum that we face in Darfur, for example.
Then there are other significant new issues; the nexus of terrorism and weapons of mass destruction. In this post9/11
period we have come to the realization that if terrorists had had their hands on a nuclear weapon we would not be
talking about 3,000 dead, we would probably be talking about 3 million dead. We have to think of what are we going
to do, and how the world is going to respond to these kinds of questions.
In the National Security Strategy of the United States there is not exclusively unilateral but rather a unilateralist
emphasis. One has been hearing that in Washington up until the quagmire that was created in Iraq, it became clear that
a single country is not going to be able to assure its own security and is not going to be able to have its way in the world
even if it is the most powerful country in the world. The U.S. is dealing with a country like Iraq which was in its third
war in 15 years after 12 years of UN sanctions and weapons inspectors.
All of that is to say the Secretary General appointed a panel. They went away to say what is wrong with the UN and
what needs to be done to fix it. They made 101 recommendations. I presume that was on purpose, the 101, it has a nice
ring to it. Those recommendations are going to be on the table when governments come together in September. So that
is the UN reform issue.
In the other part of it which was the Canadian role, we have had quite a significant intellectual impact on the UN.
The whole human security agenda has come to be seen in the UN as real and legitimate. The responsibility to protect
doctrine was created pursuant to the creation of a commission by former Foreign Minister Lloyd Axworthy, who
appointed a number of people to look at the question of why we were not able to do better in Kosovo and in Rwanda
and Bosnia and make recommendations about what to do about it.
There are a number of other areas that includes women's rights and the protection of women in conflict.
Senator Atkins: And Stephen Lewis?
Mr. Heinbecker: Yes, Stephen Lewis, to some extent. I am thinking of the AIDS issue. I think we have shown some
leadership on that issue but it is not quite as positive as people would like it to be; not Stephen Lewis but the policy we
followed. We have had an intellectual impact.
However, if human security means something, and if the responsibility to protect means something, we must have
the capability of putting soldiers on the ground. You cannot save innocent people in Darfur with diplomatic notes.
You must be ready when the time comes to act militarily. Our capacity to do that has become increasingly constrained,
and it is having an effect on the credibility of our foreign policy.
Senator Atkins: Does UN reform depend, to any degree, on how the Americans buy into it?
Mr. Heinbecker: Obviously, the United States is the most powerful country on earth and it is also the most powerful
country in the UN. Nothing very much happens at the UN that the U.S. does not want to happen. The reverse is often
true, namely, that what the U.S. wants it very often gets. It is quite significant. It is very much in the UN interest and I
do not think I have heard this administration criticize publicly the recommendations which have been made by this
high level panel. I am sure that in Washington they are sorting out what they think of the mini recommendations, and
there are some they will not like and some that they will like.
On the use of force the UN decided that there was no need for a new interpretation and that article 51 was sufficient.
The UN high-level panel could not imagine a circumstance in which individual countries would decide whether they
were going to act, because under article 51 there are two ways that you can defend yourself: Pre-emptive self-defence
and the other is through a decision of the council.
Pre-emptive self-defence has always been legitimate; it dates back a long way. The headline case is the Caroline case
that look took place between the British forces and American forces near Niagara Falls. I will also use as an example
what the Israelis did in the 1967 war, when Arab armies were massing and the Israelis attacked them. That is pre-
What we have seen out of the United States and what the UN high level panel has recommended against is the idea
of preventive war, that is, when the danger is not so imminent. Iraq is a very good case where the danger was not
imminent to the United States and they acted anyway. I presume the U.S. will not be very positive about that. I hear
they are not very positive about some of the nuclear disarmament issues also in the UN report.
By and large, an effective UN is a Canadian national interest and we should support that. An effective UN is in the
American national interest, although the people who worry about black helicopters and the UN taxing the people of
Kentucky may worry more about an effective UN. From Washington's perspective, I think an effective UN is in its
Senator Atkins: Would any reform have to begin with reform of the UN Security Council?
Mr. Heinbecker: It needs to end with reform of the Security Council rather than to begin with it. It is more
important to get agreement to change what the UN does than it is who does it. Having said that, there is a question of
legitimacy and representativeness there; the Third World countries don't believe they are adequately represented and
they do want to have a voice. The South Africans have argued that Rwanda would not have happened if there had
been a permanent African member of the Security Council. They would have made the case and would not have stood
for the inertia that was there and the callousness. I do not know whether that is true or not but, from a Canadian
perspective, an effective UN Security Council is in our interest. There are some ways which are better than others,
because we ought to leave open the possibility down the road that we will get one of those seats and not preclude it
Senator Atkins: What roles or missions should be assigned to Canadian Forces?
Mr. Legault: Can I pick up on this last point concerning the reform of the UN Security Council? Whether it is the
beginning or the end of the process, I think we should look to the future when it will be enlarged. I do not think there
will be more permanent members on the Security Council because you will need the consensus with the five permanent
members, plus 127 signatures for ratification because it must be approved by two thirds. If the Prime Minister's
proposal to extend the G20 works well, it will be very similar to what people envisage for the membership of the UN
Security Council in the future. I think there is some element of hope there.
As regards the mission of the Canadian armies, the role of the Canadian army is to protect our sovereignty. That is
their first mission. If you are talking on an international level, we have always assumed our responsibilities in the
world, if and when the UN Security Council has approved a mission. I do not think there have been any operations
undertaken by the United Nations on which Canada was not a member or part of. It is true that, in the last few years,
we have preferred to intervene to use our forces where the Americans wanted us to be. There is no doubt about that.
That is one way, perhaps, to get something in return, though those negotiations are usually kept in secret.
We could participate more in regional organizations if those become more effective in the future, for example, the
Organization of American States, OAS. However, they have not moved very much on those questions of issues. If you
look at the problems in Haiti, we still have a lot of problems and a lot of coordination to undertake, be it only with
Brazil or with the Chinese, or even trying to police people in Haiti. There is an astonishing tide of means and countries
involved. I think we should be involved where other countries are also interested and we should work closely with those
If the medium-sized countries were taking their responsibilities into their own hands, it would be easier to make a
difference with the United States, but they do not. The Europeans tend to stick with the European countries, although
the French may have asked us in the past to intervene in both the Côte d'Ivoire and in Haiti. Things are moving
around but I think we have to look at the missions providing they are established with the proper legal resolution and
the proper context. I am not sure we would be more in Darfur even if we had the necessary capabilities to intervene
there. At least if we have the means, we have the options open. When the Prime Minister asks for something, or asks
his department, the options are so damn limited that we are condemned very often to inaction.
Senator Atkins: Do you think we are effectively protecting our sovereignty?
Mr. Legault: We are not doing too badly. When you look at Bill C-36, Bill C-10 or all the bills that have been passed
that protect our sovereignty, we have done pretty well, I think.
If the Americans put the pressure on the Canadians will usually keep up. I remember a discussion when I worked for
Minister of National Defence, Mr. Gilles Lamontagne and they acquired four destroyers. The cabinet wanted to vote
for only three destroyers until the minister said that in that case, the fourth destroyer will be an American destroyer in
Canadian waters. With that, they decided to vote for four destroyers. If the Americans keep the pressure up, we are
usually in a position to meet it. I think we are protecting our sovereignty, but we could do more. As I have said, in the
end it is a question of money and the priorities of the government.
Senator Atkins: That is somewhat reassuring.
Mr. Heinbecker: Foreign policy costs money. There is a joke, if you will permit me that is partly true. A British
diplomat served in Washington for one year in the state department. When he went home, they said: What is the
difference between Washington and London? He said: Well, in Washington when something bad happens in the world,
they say: What should we do about it? In London when something bad happens in the world, we say: What should the
Americans do about it? In Ottawa when something bad happens in the world we say: What should we say about it?
We have never been in a position in our history whereby we could better afford an effective foreign policy than we
can today. This is not a question of money but a question of choices. We can give ourselves the military that we need;
we can provide the development assistance that is required; we can have the diplomatic capability that the situation
calls for; or, we can decide we do not want to spend the money on those things. No one should say that we cannot
afford it because we can afford it. It simply depends on what the government decides the Canadian priorities are.
The Chairman: On that last point, Mr. Heinbecker, how do you account for the lack of political will?
Mr. Heinbecker: Part of it had to do with the difficult finances Mr. Mulroney experienced while he was in power. At
that time we began to retrench and we removed the forces from Europe. The finances had become untenable and the
situation had to be fixed. It began under Mr. Mulroney, continued under Mr. Chrétien and eventually finances were
Another part of it is the inclination of Canadians to say: If the Americans are doing it then why should we bother?
That is an unworthy position for country such as Canada to take. We have a responsibility in the world and we ought
to acquit those responsibilities and do our share. Some of it has to do with the fact that people think they are doing
pretty well already. There is a kind of self-deception that exists in this country. There is a peacekeeping monument
down the road and when I gave speeches as Ambassador to the UN, I asked Canadians where they thought we stood
on UN peacekeeping in ranking contribution.The answer was usually: Well I do not know. Perhaps they had heard
that we were not quite as good as we used to be and they thought that perhaps we were third at a time when we were, in
fact, 38th. People think we are giving vastly more development assistance than we are giving. When you see polls that
declare that people are satisfied with foreign policy, we need to be sure to provide them with better information and
then ask them if they are satisfied with their foreign policy. That has something to do with it as well.
Leadership is another dimension. If people want to do it, they will find the money to spend on it. However, if there is
no interest or sporadic interest in foreign policy, then government policy will track that lack of interest.
The Chairman: I have two points for clarification.Mr. Heinbecker, you commented on the need to have a
professional foreign service. You were not commenting on politicizing the foreign service but rather you were talking
about having other officials in ambassadors' jobs.
Mr. Heinbecker: That is correct.
The Chairman: When we do talk about politicizing the foreign service, or putting in political people, would you say
that Washington is an anomaly in that such a post might require someone different?
Mr. Heinbecker: I am talking about both politicization and bureaucratization of the posts abroad. I believe that
these jobs are not delivered from heaven to the one person who is a natural at doing the job. At the same time,
professional experience is extremely important, whether you are talking about an official from the fisheries department
or another department or from the political system. As long as the foreign service integrity is preserved and the critical
mass is there, it makes sense to find people who have particular experience, expertise and capabilities, whether they are
politicians or public servants does not matter.
I worry about a more wholesale view that these people are interchangeable. In that case, you could end up without a
foreign service and simply send people abroad from hither and yon. The more the trend runs in that direction, the less
effective our representation abroad will be.
The post in Washington is a job for a professional. I agree with Mr. Gotlieb that this is the one post in which we
have always had professionals. I have the highest regard for the man who is about to take the position but he will not
come to it with the degree of international experience that somebody such as Allan Gotlieb or Michael Kergin or Ed
Ritchie or Marcel Cadieux possessed.
The Chairman: Did Gen. John de Chastelain have such experience?
Mr. Heinbecker: He had a great deal of international experience on the NATO military committee, et cetera. I would
give him an exemption or an equivalency.
The Chairman: I have one point for final clarification.Mr. Heinbecker, you used the word ``preventive'' war. Is that
interchangeable with pre-emptive war?
Mr. Heinbecker: I am sitting beside someone who knows this issue better than I know it. I will make an attempt at it
and he can explain it. Pre-emptive war is when the danger is immediate and the only reasonable thing you can do to
defend yourself is topre-empt it. The Israelis pre-empted the Arabs in 1967 when the Arab armies were basically on
their border. A preventive war is when you think that you are dealing with a tyrant who might have weapons of mass
destruction and who may have a malevolent intent and might, down the road, cooperate with some bad guys, so you
take him out. That is preventive war. That is what happened in Iraq and that is what is not foreseen and is illegal under
The Chairman: Thank you for that clarification.
Senator Meighen: Some of my questions have been answered, particularly the clarification on the professionalization
of the foreign service. To be sure that I understand correctly,Mr. Heinbecker you said that it is a case-by-case
assessment and that just because someone has not been a career foreign service officer does not mean he or she is not
In the foreign service, it seems to me that there has been a great deal of wasted effort. People seem to get postings
that defy logic, in that someone goes to South America, has two postings, becomes fluent in Spanish and then ends up
Is any attempt made, and would you subscribe to it, to try to develop regional expertise or continental expertise?
Mr. Heinbecker: If you have a big enough foreign service, you can specialize more. That becomes the problem. First,
it has to be rotational such that people have to be able to spend some time in Ottawa and some time abroad. We try to
specialize in areas where the languages are especially difficult, and Spanish is not considered to be one of the difficult
languages. For example, my ex-colleague Joseph Caron, who is Canada's Ambassador to the People's Republic of
China, does not speak Chinese. However, he did spend his entire career in Japan, is fluent in Japanese and has some
capacity to cope with the Chinese. His expertise on the region is vast.
It can be the same with Arabic. I learned German but the problem is that it is spoken only in Germany, Austria,
parts of Switzerland and, perhaps, a few areas of Namibia. That is the extent of it. Sometimes you just cannot have that
degree of specialization. Sometimes people get sick, things change, and you need somebody who happens to be
I think the view is that you need someone with good judgment, who can give sound advice, who has good analytical
skills and good representational skills; those are the baseline characteristics. You may have to insert that person some
place where his language skills do not fit, but you will get a basic acceptable job out of him, or her, increasingly. By the
way, the intake in the Foreign Affairs Canada is over 50 per cent female.
Senator Meighen: As a lawyer, I am not surprised. The intake in the law firms is similar these days.
Professor Legault, unfortunately, I left Laval University a few years before you arrived. So as you will see, I was not
able to benefit from your teaching.
If I may, I would like to ask you a question about the priorities you outline in your conclusion. You say that at the
international level, Canada must prepare for integrated planning of its operations. You also say that, at the national
level, Canada must increase the level of interoperability of its forces with the various American combat units.
Do you see a contradiction between these proposals? Can we do both at the same time? What will happen if the
Americans ask us to do one thing, while at the same time we must fulfil an international obligation elsewhere?
Mr. Legault: That is what I was trying to clarify in the little table contained in the document I submitted. There is
considerable tension between national defence and national security. Protecting Canadian sovereignty, NORAD and
maritime elements are all linked to maritime security. There are so many demands to protect Canadian sovereignty,
both on defence and national security, that many people in Ottawa feel that we cannot fulfil these mandates. That is
more or less the question you are asking. If we have already made a commitment abroad, will we be able to respond to
emergencies or to situations concerning national security?
I asked the same question of the Chief of the Defence Staff twenty years ago. We saw what happened at Oka. If a
similar situation were to occur in three different locations in Canada, would we have enough troops? That is the
problem. It is the elastic band theory. We are stretching our resources to the limit. There are so many demands on our
troops that it would take very little to break the elastic band.
In order for our troops to intervene abroad and at home, there must be better coordination, not only among various
departments in the case of activities abroad, but also in the case of activities at home, domestic or internal affairs.
Problems crop up and the decision has to be made. Unless the defence budget is increased significantly, Canada will
encounter problems either at home or abroad.
Senator Meighen: Perhaps I can explore a bit with Mr. Heinbecker. I do not believe that the Canadian public has put
together this whole relationship between the United Nations and our obligation and commitment there, and the tie-in
with an effective military force, and also the link between foreign policy and an effective military.
I think that the Canadian public is just beginning to understand the subtleties of this subject. I am not seeking to lay
blame anywhere, but it seems to me people do not see the tie-in. People do not go beyond saying we could not defend
ourselves, so why bother; the Americans will do it anyway.
You said, correctly I think, that most Canadians think that for every UN peacekeeping mission we would be right
up there in the first one or two, in terms of participation, and the fact that we are not is not well known.
The link between the boots and effective foreign policy, have you any suggestion as to how that can be better made?
To me, if it could, it gives a whole underpinning to the call for improved resources for the military.
Mr. Heinbecker: I can assert it; I am not sure I can prove it. I have absolutely no doubt that diplomacy without
military backup turns out often to be empty. If we are promoting the idea of human security and the responsibility to
protect we have to have the forces to do so.
Perhaps part of the problem lies in the idea about peacekeeping. Some people think peacekeeping is a kind of semi-
civilian activity. Increasingly, especially these days when you are putting UN forces into a place like Sierra Leone or
Liberia, they are going into a conflict that is ongoing.
The old definition of peacekeeping was you inserted a buffer force between two nations' armies who had been at war
and did not want to continue, and you had to prevent sparks from starting off another conflagration. Now you are
putting people down in the middle of conflicts where there may be three sides; in the Congo, at one point, there were 12
sides to this fight.
In order to be effective, it does not do any good to say you will protect people and you are going to go bare-
breasted, which used to be the UN view. That is, in fact, what the UN tried to tell us when we went into Bosnia back in
the 1990s. They tried to tell us that we did not need all of the gear that we had packed. We insisted on taking a lot of
equipment into Bosnia, and they took the view that we did not need that much, and that we were there to represent the
international community and the moral force that is there. We discovered that people like the Serbs did not pay the
slightest bit of attention to the moral force we brought with us, but they did pay attention to the tanks and the heavy
It is a fundamental misunderstanding about the nature of peacekeeping. Whether we would have gone into Darfur,
and I think we might have, you have the option for leadership when you have the military capability to do things.
Diplomats cannot save people from the rebels that we see in Darfur. You have to have military people who can go
there and stop the bad people from doing things; and until you have the capability, you are just talking. Your foreign
policy is declaratory and not real, in my view.
Senator Meighen: I agree very much with what you said.
Speaking of Darfur, does the reform of the United Nations, to which you alluded earlier, include a better
mechanism for making a decision on a situation such as Darfur, and/or is NATO the insurance company to which you
For example, if the United Nations were to continue to appear to have its hands tied and to refuse to intervene, is
that a situation where we might call up our insurance company called NATO and ask them to go in?
Mr. Heinbecker: I am not sure that you would. You might. That is what we did in Kosovo when the UN was
The difficulty we are dealing with is that the Iraq war has rather polluted the environment. It gives countries like
Sudan, with their scurrilous policies, the possibility of casting doubt on the motivations of Western interveners.
I have heard them say: ``The United States is only beating up another Muslim country; that is what this is about.''
``There is oil in Sudan; that is what this is about.'' They are able, because of the Iraqi experience, to be credible with
some people that they otherwise ought not to be able to be credible with. This also applies to the responsibility to
protect. People are taking the view that you should not be able to intervene to protect, which is what the United States
said it was doing in Iraq. Ex post facto it created a humanitarian reason for intervening in Iraq and the existence of
sovereignty is one of the few defences that poorer countries feel they have against being pushed around by the old
colonial powers, or by new ones.
The answer to your question is that they will try to improve the decision making mechanism, but fundamentally it
comes down to politics and whether or not people agree with the proposition.
China is one country that is resisting the intervention in Sudan, and I think we should be putting pressure on China.
They are talking about national sovereignty, but we know that they have economic interests there. Algeria is another
country that is resisting the intervention. The difficulty is that our arguments have been undermined by the American
preventive elective war in Iraq.
Senator Meighen: Finally, professor Legault, Canadians generally, and Quebeckers in particular, seem very
reluctant, not to overstate the matter, to support an increase in military spending. Do you think that this attitude has
changed recently? Do you believe such a change is possible? Do you think the problem is that politicians are having
difficulty expressing the rationale for such decisions clearly, and sometimes show a lack of leadership?
Mr. Legault: That is a tough question. I do not think there is any support in Quebec for an increase in military
expenditures, and I think that is the same in the rest of Canada. The last Gallup poll on the budget indicated that only
27 per cent of Canadians are in favour of increasing military expenditures. The priority is on social programs,
environment and other things. The situation is not very different in Quebec than it is in the rest of Canada.
You mentioned the myth about peacekeeping, and I think you are right about that. Presumably because Quebec has
a huge base in terms of French speaking regiments, they have believed for a long time in peacekeeping and thought that
was what it was all about.
The problem is, as Mr. Heinbecker has just pointed out, we had a peacekeeping force observing war in Bosnia and
after the Dayton Accord we had a huge army observing peace. It does make a difference, but you must be aware of
what the problem is.
Quebec people are not anti-American, but they are anti-Bush. They are living in a myth in the sense that foreign
policy is a difficult problem; especially the responsibility to protect, which I think will be an important part of the new
white paper on defence.
This is perhaps a niche that must be better explained. I think a transition has happened in Quebec with our troops in
Afghanistan. They have done pretty well, to the surprise of everyone. Of course, four of our aircraft were downed by
American fire, but that did not really affect what Quebecers thought of their troops. They have done a remarkable job.
I believe that the question of early in and early out was never sufficiently explained to the public. We are pretty good
at securing airports, getting in first and getting out first, and we have done pretty well in explaining the work of the
RCMP and other police, especially in Haiti.
Quebec is a bit behind in terms of understanding the real issues, but if you ask them to fight in a war, I think you
would have a different perspective in Quebec. They simply do not like war, like everyone else, I guess. The transition is
how to ensure that your foreign policy is understood, and that is really a question of leadership more than anything
Senator Forrestall: I have no problems with Quebecers. Making love is always more fun than making war.
I appreciate your remarks. One always learns. Although it will not happen in my lifetime, or perhaps that of anyone
in this room, sooner or later when a country's population soars toward 2 billion people, several hundred million people
will come to Canada. They will establish themselves here and grow.
That will happen much quicker than people who dare to speculate about this think. I think it will happen in this
century. I am afraid that we are not doing very much to prepare ourselves for that mentally in the sense of being told
that we must do this by tomorrow or suffer certain consequences. I do not think we are doing enough to prepare
ourselves that way with respect to defence and defence posturing.
We seem to have been followers of those structures and elements in our society that represented force. We seem to
have accepted that they were the lawmakers. We did not always have the opportunity to obey laws of our own
choosing and making. I share your observation that our foreign policy should be thoroughly represented abroad by
professionals. God knows I would have stayed in Barbados forever.
We need to strengthen these forks or we will not have the capacity to mentally prepare ourselves against the day
when it will not matter; when it will be someone else's decision.
Do you think we can get ourselves mentally prepared for that which is bound to happen in the next 20 or 30 years by
beginning to do something now? We are enjoying the last of this great nation.
Mr. Legault: Yes, and paying very little. We may have to start with equipment. We are talking about capital
investment which lasts 20 years or 30 years, and those have lapsed dramatically in the last 20 years, perhaps due to the
stubbornness of the political leader who believed that we did not need helicopters or destroyers.
We need to find the right words to convince the people. Prime Minister Martin has used the words ``humanitarian
intervention'' and this has not been noted anywhere in the country as far as I know. He talked about humanitarian
intervention in Africa.
People should read those speeches. It is new terminology. Even before the tsunami event on December 26, President
Chirac of France proposed to set up an international humanitarian intervention force at the UN. I am sure the people
of Quebec would embrace that idea. They are not ready to fight war, but they are ready to deliver justice in a different
framework than what the United States is doing in Iraq, if one can call that justice.
There is the fact that things have changed terribly since September 11, and I do not know if that is good or bad.
NATO is now dealing with terrorism, and they did not do that in the past. NATO, which has been an east-west
organization, may be a north-south organization in the next 20 years, if you look at what is going on in terms of
Islamic radicalism and what is happening in the Middle East. It is a question of striking a balance between the excessive
emphasis put on terrorism and all the laws that have been passed.
It is the contrary of what is happening in Europe. In Europe the frontiers have disappeared. If you talk about the
security parameters, the periphery of Europe is really at the end of Europe, everyone is moving freely within Europe.
It has been the reverse in Canada. We have reinvented the frontiers, even though we may want to call them
``intelligent borders.'' Is this because the United States does not have any confidence in our police system or our
immigration system? Whatever the causes are, they are putting an enormous emphasis on that, and this prevents people
from looking at future issues, as you are asking for.
If we can find the right words, and humanitarian intervention will be good ones, it may prepare for the future.
Second, as I have said, is really tackling the question of equipment head on.
Mr. Heinbecker: I disagree with the fundamental premise, if I am correct, and I think I am. International global
population has actually peaked, or the growth has peaked and is on the way down again. I do not think we will see a
world which is so crowded that we have to cope with unwanted invasions.
There is a danger of positing the Chinese as an enemy, and I think we would be wiser to think of the Chinese as a
country with whom we could cooperate. We are going to get a lot more done in the world through cooperation than we
are through competition and through seeing the Chinese as some inevitable, undesirable enemy.
We are seeing quite a bit of that talk in Washington, but we should not be emulating it because it is not wise to do
so. The Chinese have their own problems; they have the contradictions inherent in having a communist/capitalist
system. I do not know how that will shake out, and it is a consideration.
The economic growth is enormous, their behaviour has been circumspect, and we should not be taking the view that
they are or are destined to be our enemy just because they are big. That could become a self-fulfilling prophecy.
Senator Atkins: Can you explain to me why the Chinese are not more concerned about North Korea?
Mr. Heinbecker: I think they are concerned about North Korea, but nobody is quite sure of is what to do about it.
The assessment that the North Koreans have or say they have or could have nuclear weapons is certainly an important
The North Koreans, if I have the numbers right, can put 400,000 artillery shells on Seoul in an hour. Military
intervention is not a simple matter, especially when the leadership is the kind of leadership they have. They are
concerned. They are also concerned about the poverty-stricken people coming over the border. The Chinese have their
problems and would like to see more sensible governance in North Korea, but nobody is quite sure how to get from
here to there.
They participate in the six-power talks, and such influences they have, they are using. It is a complicated story. You
have at the other end of China, Taiwan, and the Japanese and Americans making statements on Taiwan that give the
Chinese pause. It is a several-sided game going on there all at once. There is no doubt that the Chinese are concerned
about North Korea.
Senator Losier-Cool: I have to go to the Committee on Human Rights at 4 p.m.. Today we are studying Canada's
international relations with respect to the conventions and human rights issues involving children.
I would like to come back to two things about which my colleagues have already spoken: the issues of leadership
and political will. I would like your comments in this.
Recently, Roméo Dallaire told us that Canada has developed leaders and now has the responsibility to show the
leadership of which these leaders are capable. How could Canada make a significant contribution to reforming the
United Nations with respect to leadership, I mean in the context of this report to be presented in September? Can
Canada do this?
My second question is about political will, to which Senator Kenny referred. Senator Meighen continued along the
same lines with reference to Quebec. Are Canadian men and women sufficiently aware of the issue? It is a vicious circle:
If people are informed, they take an interest in the matter. People are not interested in the issue perhaps because they
are not informed about the conventions Canada has signed. How could our committee make a connection between
defence and development? I know this involves a number of other questions, so I will stop there and come back later if
I need more details.
Mr. Heinbecker: There are two or three points I would make in response to your first question about how we can
contribute significantly or effectively to UN reform. In the first place, we have already done that. At the heart of the
UN reform proposals are the principles and the findings of the report called The Responsibility to Protect, which was
commissioned by us. It was not written by us, although we had some input, but it was commissioned by us. That is now
having a major impact. It was described by Anne-Marie Slaughter, who was the dean of the Woodrow Wilson School
at Princeton University, as the best foreign policy document in 50 years. It is not trivial.
Having said that, I think the next important thing is for the Canadian government to decide which parts of the UN
reform are the most important to it and to organize itself and to put the resources behind actually trying to achieve
If I can give one small advertisement, I am organizing a conference on UN reform at the beginning of April in which
we will look very specifically at how governments can give effect to these recommendations and the recommendations
of the UN Millennium Project run by Jeffrey Sachs. The recommendations say that we need a lot more money for
The government can identify these as priorities and can marshal its diplomats particularly to make the case for that.
That will be an intense diplomatic negotiation over the next six months leading up to the summit in the fall. That is
how we can do it.
When you talk about generating political will, I am not sure I know the actual answer to that but I can make a
couple of stabs at it. One of them is there is in this country, especially in this capital, a kind of a culture that does not
get you much beyond Question Period.
When I was in New York, I was despairing at our incapacity internationally to communicate. I think the same
problems are there also domestically.
I was in New York on 9/11. I went to I do not know how many memorial services representing government people
of Canada. I remember being at Yankee Stadium in particular and looking at the big Jumbotron and they were
showing the ceremonies that were happening in Canberra and what was happening in Ankara and what was happening
in Athens and the British got about three mentions. There was no recognition at all that there were a hundred thousand
people on Parliament Hill expressing solidarity.
There are many remarkable stories on 9/11. One of the most remarkable is that the Government of Canada decided
within45 minutes to take all committed inbound flights, trans-Pacific and transatlantic within 45 minutes of the first
plane hitting the first tower. That is an astonishing reality. Then we gave shelter to the 35,000 people who were on these
200 some planes. We did not know whether these planes had terrorists on them either. That story was never carried in
the American media. It was carried in The New York Times on the November 17 as part of the deal of a departing
correspondent for The New York Times that wrote the story. All The New York Times wanted to know about was
whether the terrorists came from Canada. It was not carried on U.S. television.
When we sent off troops to Kandahar to fight with the Americans, there was not even a communications plan. We
did not tell anybody in the United States that we were doing that. When we captured the Taliban and al Qaeda,
whoever those guys were we captured, we first denied it was us. It could not have been us; we do not do that kind of
I like to say that we come somewhere between Myanmar and Vietnam in our capacity to communicate. We are just
not communicating. Part of the reason is that every minister's office is riveted on Question Period. What is going to
happen on Question Period, what is Newsworld going to say?
I do not know how it can be in this country that Canadians do not know that we rank 35th in peacekeeping. I do not
know how Canadians can not know this with all of the sources of information available to them, with the Internet and
television and radio and newspapers and everything else. They still think we rank third. I do not know what the
explanation is; you are the people with the political experience, maybe you have the answers.
Senator Losier-Cool: I appreciate your comment to Question Period because many Canadians unfortunately
sometimes form an opinion on what they hear at Question Period.
This committee is doing a policy review on defence. What would you advise the committee to stress on this question
of communication defence? Should we reconcile defence with development and not use the word ``terrorism.''
Canadians are afraid of the word ``terrorism.'' The word comes from ``terror.'' Maybe we have to look at other words,
at the way we use the language and this is what Mr Legault mentioned a while ago.
The Chairman: This has been a very interesting exchange between the two of you. One of the great frustrations of
this committee is that when we make recommendations to the government, the definition of ``solution'' is whether or
not they can get it off the front pages and out of Question Period. When that happens, then the problem is solved. It is
quite a challenge to change that dynamic. We would welcome any advice you have on that issue.
Mr. Heinbecker: Right now? I would not mind having a chance to think about it a bit.
Mr. Legault: If you want to get the attention of the people of this country, you just have to reproduce what has
happened in Newfoundland with the offshore agreement. I think we should look at that in terms of getting a type of
consensus in Canada so as to include the involvement of the provinces. You would get a lot more attention and I think
this touches upon humanitarian intervention. It touches upon almost all niches in foreign policy and that may be one
way to take leadership and to communicate better.
If you involve the provinces you do not involve only one group from the air force or army. You involve other
responsibilities. It is more difficult to manage. I do not know what type of experience Foreign Affairs Canada has with
the provinces. At times I know it was difficult but I think there is a lot of room for improvement. It may help this
country because foreign policy has become a very complicated subject.
The Chairman: Professor, I thought at first you were asking us to lower all the flags when we put out our report.
Surely defence foreign policy, foreign aid, is all in the federal ambit. We are focusing too much on the provincial ambit
in any event. Should we be inviting the province to focus on the federal responsibilities?
Mr. Legault: I am sorry. I think I have been misunderstood. What I am trying to explain is that in development, in
police operation, in security, in terrorism, the provinces are heavily involved and we should build that niche in co-
operation with the provinces, otherwise it will not fly very well.
I may add even though we may have a good capability, it does not mean that we will be able to go to a given place.
What we need are options without necessarily having to decide that because we have the capability, we have to go to
Darfur. That is the problem.
The question of the Great Lake was a very peculiar incident in terms of political configuration. The former Minister
of National Defence was Director of Siocoo in Africa; the Ambassador in Washington was the nephew of the Prime
Minister. Somebody panicked, including General Romeo Dallaire and this is how the operation was put in place. It
failed miserably because we discovered that other countries had different political agendas and the whole thing fell
It is one thing to have capabilities but we need options. We need to associate other people which are best at where
we want to intervene, be it in humanitarian aid or other aid, and communicate the whole issue across the country,
simply not in Ottawa for Question Period. I am sorry, maybe I did not express myself correctly but I think the message
The Chairman: Yes, the message is there, sir. Ambassador?
Mr. Heinbecker: I would not mind responding as well. In one sense I think I am recently on the record on this
subject. Insofar as involving provinces and foreign policy is concerned, the place to do that of course is in Canada. It is
not to do it in New York and in Paris and in Vienna and everywhere else. In other words, if we are going to have a
foreign policy that represents better the interests and the capabilities of provinces, the place to create that and to
organize it and to reconcile it is here, not out in the UN General Assembly. I said recently that it is hard enough for us
to get the world to listen to one Canadian voice let alone having them sit still for 11 voices.
On the issue of how to communicate across the country, part of our problem is if we had a constitution like the
German constitution in which the Senate is part of the national government and people who are elected in the
provinces, come and sit in Parliament, you have a way of integrating it better. I think there is a problem where Ottawa
is one entity and the provinces are another, and there is no organic link between the two; that is a difficulty. The size of
the country itself means that only the most powerful messages carry all the way to the coasts.
Senator Banks: Mr. Ambassador I would like to discuss the question of UN efficacy or usefulness. I am old enough
to remember having seen the establishment of the United Nations and Canada's almost glorious role in it, the hope
that derived from that, and the confidence in the future that we would make sure that many things did not happen
again and that many things would happen which had never happened before. I have to confess that my hope has given
way to a certain amount of cynicism both in the province which I have the honour to represent and personally as well.
It seems these days that the active things that have some traction and teeth are done by international multilateral
organizations other than the UN. The UN has become, literally, a paper tiger, and you made mention of the
exponential growth in the size of the membership as a reason for its present state.
When the UN was formed, it was perceived there was a majority of ``good guys'' in the membership. We now have
an almost oxymoronic situation in which the United Nations General Assembly has elected Libya to the chairmanship
of the United Nations Human Rights Commission. That seems, on the face of it, preposterous.
The story in Rwanda having to do with General Dallaire, which has now been made into a popular piece, seems to
argue that the United Nations, when it gets into situations where people are in dire straits, is unable or unwilling or
completely dysfunctional. We often comment that NATO or the European Community has taken care of problems
that the UN used to oversee.
Can you help convince me and convince people in my part of the woods that there is hope for the UN to have some
Mr. Heinbecker: Yes, I think that is the case. I will start with Henry Cabot Lodge's remark in 1955 when he said:
This organization is formed to keep you from going to hell. It is not formed to take you to heaven.
We have a situation in which the UN is seen both as a kind of a club and a kind of independent entity. The UN is
not an independent entity; it acts only under the direction of its members, and its most powerful members are those in
the Security Council, especially the five.
I agree that Canada had an important role in the formulation of the UN. However, if you look up the glorious
Canadian role in the formation of the UN in the index of the book by the current American historian who is the son of
Arthur Schlesinger Jr., you do not find any reference to Canada.
There is a certain amount of romance in the idea that this was our golden age. It was our golden age, but other
people did not necessarily see us as playing the role that we thought we were playing.
Senator Banks: You mentioned that before in The New York Times with respect to 9/11.
Mr. Heinbecker: That is right.
On the hope and cynicism in the UN as paper tiger, it is true that NATO was effective in Kosovo and effective ex
post facto in Afghanistan. I would put the UN's record up against that in that the UN was in East Timor, Sierra Leone,
Ethiopia-Eritrea, the Congo, Côte d'Ivoire, Liberia and many other places one could mention.
NATO would spend a lot of time trying to think of its role. ``Out of area or out of business'' was a long debate that
took a long time to resolve. One of the great difficulties in the UN is the existence of the veto, and there would not be
an UN without a veto, but five countries can exercise the veto. The United States has exercised it far more than
anybody else. Perhaps the Soviet Union would have been in the same league, but it does not exist any more.
Senator Banks: The United States characterizes its use of the veto often as something to stop the tyranny of the
Mr. Heinbecker: No, it is something to stop what might contradict American foreign policy.
Senator Banks: That is the same thing.
Mr. Heinbecker: You could interpret the tyranny of the majority in that sense. I think American vetoes are oftenself-
I was in the Security Council for six months, and the only country that I did not see use or threaten use of the veto
was the French. Their record is good on not using the veto, and they are the ones who said to the Canadian
commission on intervention that there ought to be a self-denying ordinance that the members of the Security Council
use the veto only in cases of their own national security interest, not in cases of advancing their own foreign policy.
I will not defend Libya in the UN human rights commission. I think that is a catastrophe. Several of the
recommendations in the UN high level report are intended to try to get at that kind of issue.
Some people make the argument of creating an organizationof democracies, but the difficulty with such an
organizationis that the people that you want to deal with may not be present. It is important, I think, to try to include
the Chinese,and other countries. However, if you are looking at the extent of democracy in the UN, the Freedom
House, which I do not think is a particularly ideological American institution, has about 60 to 70 members of the UN
as democracies, another 60 to 70 as semi-democracies, and another 60, because that is about the proportion, are not.
When you hear that the place is run by tyrants, it is not the case, and no country comes close to being as influential in
the UN as the United States. The U.S. is the major beneficiary of the UN. We are not going to get to a world
government. We can get some marginal and incremental improvement in the way the UN functions.
I should say a word about the oil-for-food program, which has probably occurred to people. The oil-for-food
program is one in which the UN as the secretariat is getting a bad rap, and it is being done for politically motivated
reasons in Washington. I can demonstrate my thinking on that subject.
The oil-for-food program was a response to the situation that arose from the sanctions imposed on Iraq, which
worked, as we now know and as we thought at the time. However, it worked at a tremendous humanitarian cost. The
idea was that we had to find some way of getting food and medicine into the country, and the way to pay for that in an
oil-rich country is to let them sell oil.
The U.S. and the U.K. examined without exception every single contract that was let, and the U.S. put holds on
more contracts than anybody else did. That is the first point.
The second point is on the export of oil from Iraq. The export of oil from Iraq was not under the oil-for-food
program, and the smuggling was not under the oil-for-food program by definition. It was not going over mountaintops
on donkey-back. It was going out by transports, trucks and pipelines. It was being done with the connivance of the
United States and everybody else. It was an open secret; there was no conspiracy about it.
The two countries that needed that oil the most were Jordan and Turkey. Turkey in the 1991 invasion of Iraq, after
Iraq and, arguably, Kuwait, was the country that lost the most. They were on the Allied side; they participated. They
lost their tourism revenue, their major market in Iraq and their source of oil. By their own definition, they thought they
lost $30 billion to $50 billion and more. The international community would have been better if they had regularized it,
but they did not. There was no doubt that people knew where the oil was going and it was coming into Turkey to the
port of Ceyhan and was being sent out from there, bought by people like Marc Rich and others, who President Clinton
pardoned, and it was being resold. There is a problem in the UN. The Volker Commission has found things on Benon
Sevan but has not found any personally financial culpability, but has found that they were doing things that he called a
grave continuing conflict of interest.
At the same time, just to put this in perspective, the U.S. CPA, the Coalition Provisional Authority, lost $9 billion in
Iraqi money, $9 billion when the United States was in charge of the place. Ambassador Paul L. Bremmer got the medal
of honour for his service, and his explanation of why they lost $9 billion was it was terribly difficult to administer in the
circumstances that prevailed. Well he ought to try to administer it when Saddam Hussein was in charge, if he thinks it
is difficult when he was in charge. You will read almost nothing about this subject.
What you are seeing is a politically motivated attack by the American Right on the UN who for whatever reason
thinks the UN is an obstacle to American foreign policy and is trying to diminish both the UN and the Secretary-
If the Secretary-General's son has misbehaved that will come out and I am not sure how the world will react. It will
depend on whether Secretary-General was some how implicated. If he was not implicated, I presume we would hold
him not responsible.
The idea somehow that this is a unique problem on the UN's behalf when we see the kind of stuff we have been
seeing that the United States has been administering in Iraqi, I think, is proof that it is a political operation.
Senator Banks: Mr. Legault, should we continue to adhere and have hope for the United Nations? Is it in our
Dr. Legault: I think there is no alternative to the UN. That is the problem. We have tried everything. I do not know
of any multilateral organization to which Canada is not a member. The question is which one is the most efficient and
the United Nations despite its failures and despite its weaknesses is still presumably the best organization where in true
wish in fact we can have our influence felt throughout the world providing of course that you do have a legal mandate
to do so.
Mr. Heinbecker mentioned the Volker report. The reactions are very mixed when you read in the United States
about the Volker Report. Some people are going back to the UN and supporting the United Nations reinforcement
and some people seem to believe that it is still very ineffective. The future only will tell us. Of course the problem is as
you have just mentioned that Iraq has polluted the environment, but there may be other areas in the future where in
fact the UN will intervene and with the great sense of legitimate support in the world. It is too soon to pass judgment
on the future of the UN. I think it has a future.
Senator Atkins: Mr. Heinbecker, you did not mention the UN inspection team. You were in New York during that
period. I am curious to hear your view about that procedure.
Mr. Heinbecker: Are you referring to the weapons inspectors?
Senator Atkins: Yes.
The weapons inspectors together with the sanctions, the record is now perfectly clear, actually worked. All of the
talk that we heard that they were a bunch of Inspector Clouseaus in a country the size of California and they would not
be able to find anything or do anything, was followed up by a period in which there was 1,600 American weapons
inspectors with free rein to go all over Iraq and they have not found anything. Nor have they been able to establish a
connection between Al-Qaeda and the Iraqi government despite what a majority of American voters seem to believe.
The weapons inspection system actually worked and if this were a rational world, we would be saying to ourselves,
this is a great new foreign policy instrument: the UN has weapons inspection capability in places where we are worried
about it and we can use it. In fact that is one of the things that Hans Blix, who was a weapons inspector, is trying to
promote. There is a capacity there to inspect that could be used in other circumstances.
I think what we have seen is that the UN actually succeeded. When people keep saying that the UN does not
succeed, the UN succeeded on weapons inspection brilliantly. It really actually worked.
Senator Atkins: However, they do not seem to get the credit.
Mr. Heinbecker: No, because they were being actively discredited by the U.S. administration which did not want the
weapons inspectors to get in the way of a decision they had already made to go and attack Iraq.
Senator Banks: Who was right?
Mr. Heinbecker: The weapons inspectors were right, without any question in my mind.
Senator Atkins: Incidentally, Mr. Legault, you mentioned John Holmes, who was an incredible individual. He really
served our country well in his time.
Dr. Legault: He was certainly a multilateralist and he believed in what he did.
Senator Meighen: In reference to the exercise of a Security Council veto, did you make a distinction that the French
suggested that it should be exercisable only in national self interest and not in foreign policy interest?
Mr. Heinbecker: National security interest.
Senator Meighen: What is the difference between the two terms?
Mr. Heinbecker: It means that the United States would exercise its veto when there was a threat to the United States,
not necessarily a threat to one of its allies. That is the fundamental difference.
Senator Meighen: The incumbent president tells us that Iraq was a threat to United States.
Mr. Heinbecker: The United States was not vetoing anything; they were trying to get action in the Security Council.
It was the others who were saying it. You could make the argument that the threat the French made to veto was not
consistent with the proposition that they had proposed which was you would only do it in your national security
However, I do not know if I have answered the question or not.
Senator Meighen: Well, I think, in national security interest, one versus foreign policy interest, I can see the two
Mr. Heinbecker: You can, but the point they are trying to reach is that it ought not to be done on behalf of current
or future or past allies. To take a neutral example, the Russians were threatening to veto action on Kosovo because of
the kind of a relationship with the Serbs. That was not in the direct national interest of the Russians to do that, but
they did it and the argument would continue that the United States has often done that, in fact, does it routinely on
behalf of Israel.
Senator Stollery: As we know, Dean Atchison was opposed to the UN being in New York until Rockfeller gave the
land for the buildings. If the U.S. becomes so anti-UN, I agree with the thrust of your response, will the UN leave New
York City as Dean Atchison wished they had at the beginning?
Mr. Heinbecker: The odd American NeoCon still wishes they would. I do not know, it would be a very expensive
proposition to move the UN. There is a country that would take them straight away and that is Canada; there are
people in both Montreal and Toronto who would like to see that happen. The Swiss would not mind if it all moved to
Geneva and the Germans would be happy to put it in Bonn, so there would be no lack of candidates. However, I think
it is beneficial to the UN to be in New York because it is the centre of communications and it is a way of
communicating with Americans that goes beyond what the U.S. government is saying. There is an inherent value in
having it in New York and I do not think anyone would move it unless life really became unpleasant in that city.
Senator Stollery: I can never remember the name of the measure that was used during the Korean War, the majority
vote provision. It has a name.
Mr. Heinbecker: It is called ``Uniting for Peace'' and is resolution 377.
Senator Stollery: Why is that resolution not used very often?
Mr. Heinbecker: In regard to Kosovo, Canada was on the Security Council at the time that the Kosovo intervention
took place. We had the presidency for the month in question and could set the agenda. Lloyd Axworthy went down to
New York three separate times. We polled our allies and friends on Uniting for Peace, and in the end we did not do it.
Should we have done it? I think he thinks we probably should have done it. We did not do it for two reasons: First,
the Serbs were founding members of the non-aligned movement and we did not know what kind of support they had in
the General Assembly; and, second, there was a risk either that we would get a decision that we did not fully approve
of, or that it would take a long time to get the right decision, and all the while people were getting killed and being
expelled and ethnic cleansing was taking place.
There were people who felt that they had a sufficient legal position to act, but they would not have had a sufficient
legal position to act if the issue had been put to a vote in the Security Council and it had been vetoed. Under the rules,
that would have meant it was defeated. Then you would have been facing aclear-cut decision that it was not legal and
some of our members did not want to do that.
There were also the interests of the permanent members who do not like the idea of the veto being circumnavigated.
They were against it partly for that reason. They did not want to have their veto power weakened.
All in all, it is not done because it is difficult to do; it is difficult to predict the outcome and it often happens in a case
of urgency where you do not want to take the time to see how it will play out.
Senator Stollery: Using the Uniting for Peace resolution seems to be one of the ways in which the veto can be taken
on because the UN will not be effective so long as there is the veto.
Mr. Legault: The Uniting for Peace resolution just transferred a question back to the General Assembly. The
resolution cannot be used for the issue of peace and security; it can only make a recommendation, which is to the U.S.
and we are back at the problem, or make it to the Secretary-General of the United Nations, which is what we did in
1956 with the question of the Suez Crisis and the Secretary-General was left with two legal problems. The Secretary-
General had to determine what to do because he needed the consent of the host problem. This is how the host-state
agreement was born. That is why we did not have the Canadian Forces in Israel because they said no to our forces.
That is one legal problem.
The second problem is that you have to conclude between the Secretary-General, on the basis of a recommendation,
host-state and participating states agreement, which guarantee to each country that you can take benefit from the 1948
Convention on Diplomatic Immunity. It is a full circle and this one did not help.
Mr. Heinbecker: The decision was that the UN will never be effective. UNICEF inoculated 575 million children
against childhood diseases. The World Food Program fed 100 million people last year. The UN High Commissioner
for Refugees housed 22 million refugees and displaced people. The UN Mine Action Services destroyed 30.5 million
land mines and saved countless limbs.
There is a tendency for people to say that the UN will never be effective, but there is a huge amount of UN work
that most people are unaware of, and that is why I wanted to put that on the record.
The Deputy Chairman: On behalf committee we are grateful for your appearance before us. The information you
have brought us is useful. I am sure it will be of assistance to us as we continue with our examination of Canada's
defence needs. Thank you for coming, I assure you that it was much appreciated.
The Chairman: We have before us today Vice-Admiral Greg Jarvis. He is the Assistant Deputy Minister for human
resources in the Canadian Forces. He joined the Canadian Forces in 1971 as a naval logistics officer. He assumed the
appointment of command comptroller for maritime command in 1992. He was promoted to Commodore in 1994, and
became director general, financial services at National Defence headquarters. In 1996, he was promoted to Rear-
Admiral and was appointed chief financial officer and departmental comptroller for National Defence. In December of
2000, he was promoted to Vice-Admiral. Prior to assuming the position of Assistant Deputy Minister, Human
Resources, in early 2004, he served with the Conference Board of Canada, exploring best practices in human resource
Vice-Admiral Jarvis is a graduate of the Canadian Forces Command and Staff College, National Defence College in
Kingston and the Queens University executive program.
Proceed with your presentation, please.
Vice-Admiral Greg Jarvis, Assistant Deputy Minister (Human Resources — Military), National Defence: I very much
appreciate the opportunity to meet with you today to address some important Canadian Forces human resources
issues. I will be happy to respond to your questions from my perspective as the Assistant Deputy Minister for human
resources-military, but do want to make some brief opening remarks regarding the human resources-military group to
explain our role, our challenges and what we are doing to address these challenges.
The human resources-military group delivers a wide variety of programs, policy and services that enable the
Canadian Forces to carry out its mission. Principal among these are: recruiting, education and training, human
resources policy and planning, career management, compensation and benefits, spiritual services, health care services,
including the force generation of health services capabilities for deployed operations, quality of life programs,
personnel and family support programs, history and heritage and the alternative dispute resolution program. These
human resources business lines are highly interconnected, and changes to programs and policies in one area invariably
impact other areas. In total, the group has about 12,600 people devoted to these tasks, of which 7,000 are military,
including a student and recruit body averaging 5,000.
As you have heard from my colleagues, we are operating in a changing security environment. The operational and
personal tempo remains high. We are faced with many challenges; challenges to sustain our current capacity, to
transform and grow, and to ensure that the Canadian Forces remain relevant to the citizens of Canada.
The strategic intake or recruiting plan over the last few years was designed to allow the Canadian Forces to recover
from the force-reduction program of the 1990s, to ease the pressure of a very high operational tempo and to ameliorate
the attrition caused by the first wave of baby boomers. Recruitment in the past few years has been quite successful,
achieving close to 99 per cent of our target for the regular force. This stems from a variety of initiatives such as moving
from just-in-time recruiting tonear-real-time recruiting.
We also reduced the recruit processing time from 60 daysto 35 days for applicants who do not have medical or
security issues. We have introduced electronic aptitude testing and we are developing e-recruiting capabilities to allow
applications to be tracked via the internet. To ensure that we are more representative of Canadian society we have
developed diversity recruitment initiatives; women, Aboriginals and visible minorities represent a larger percentage of
our total force than ever before and we aim to improve this representation.
Despite our successful recruiting efforts, there are still a number of occupations that remain under strength, such as
the health, technical, engineering and aviation occupations. The competition with the private sector for people in these
highly skilled occupations remains fierce. We have developed or are in the process of developing many initiatives to
improve our recruitment and to remain competitive. We have subsidized education, enrolment allowances and other
As you are aware, the government intends to increase the size of the Canadian Forces by 5,000 regular and 3,000
reserve force members over the next five or six years. To manage this increase, we will need to consider both short-term
and long-term force planning issues to ensure our training system can meet the requirements for both basic and
Over the last few years, our training capacity has had to adjust to a large influx of new recruits, and we will have to
continue to adjust in the future. To manage this influx of recruits, we have dedicated more resources to our training in
order to alleviate some of the pressure on that system. To further reduce the pressure, we have undertaken initiatives
such as computer-based training and distance learning.
Our post-recruit training and education centre has developed innovative training, education and work assignments
to ensure we capitalize on every opportunity to further develop our people while they await the first phase of their
trade or occupation training.
We are also in the process of implementing a campus concept at our major support training site at CFB Borden,
which aims to better integrate resources and to optimize the employment of instructors and the use of facilities.
Once we have recruited and trained members of the Canadian Forces, one of the next challenges we face is to retain
them. Overall attrition is not currently an issue. It has remained constant over the past five years, averaging slightly
over 6 per cent of the regular force population. The voluntary attrition component of this has remained below 4 per
cent for the past three years, which is the envy of many of our allies. That said attrition in some occupations, such as
those in the medical and technical fields, remains a concern. To better monitor and manage overall attrition in general,
we have designed and implemented a retention intervention process to identify and address attrition problems within
specific military occupations.
Another concern stems from the fact that we have a large number of people approaching the 20 year point the end
of what we call ``intermediate engagement,'' at which time individuals can leave the forces with an immediate annuity.
To alleviate some of these pressures, we will implement a new terms of service program on April 1 this year. This
program will change the length of the intermediate engagement from 20 years to 25 years, which will enable us to retain
expertise, obtain a better return on individual training and education investments, and increase job security for our
members. We are also striving to retain the valuable experience of our more senior members by increasing retirement
age from 55 years to 65 years. In an age where many careers are short-term, we are working toward making the
Canadian Forces an attractive choice for those who want a long-term career.
One of the key areas that impacts retention is the quality of life that we can offer our members and their families.
This is a high priority for the Canadian Forces leadership. Canada is changing and with it so are the values,
expectations and needs of our members. We have expended significant effort and resources toward improving the
military quality of life since the Standing Committee of Defence and Veterans Affairs tabled its report in 1998. Of the
committee's 89 recommendations, 66 have now been completed, and work continues to address the remaining
There have been significant improvements in a number of areas that impact the quality of life of Canadian Forces
members and their families, including pay and benefits, family needs, housing and care of the injured, to name a few. I
will not list them all the improvements, but more examples are included in the text provided to the committee.
This being said, one of the issues that we are still wrestling with is the amount of time that our members spend away
from home. The various deployments on international and domestic operations combined with other training and
professional development have affected the amount of time away from home and increased personnel tempo. Our
ongoing research in this area is identifying what impact various levels of time away from home are having on our
members and their families. We know that too much time away is not healthy but too little time away is a dissatisfier as
well because our members typically join the forces to participate in operations and to travel. Our current policy states
that a member must have at least one year at home between major deployments with no separation from family for the
first 60 days upon return from deployment.
Another area of continuing focus in terms of quality of life is health care, as our members must be assured that they
will be provided the best possible quality of health care wherever they serve. As you know, it is the responsibility of the
Canadian Forces to provide health care for its members and fulfilling this responsibility does not come without
challenge. The overall cost of health care throughout the country is rising significantly and we are not immune to this
reality. There is heavy competition for a small pool of clinical health care professionals in Canada. Our high
operational tempo has increased our reliance on civilian health care workers and our reserve force to fill gaps in the
provision of health professionals to support operations. Our clinicians are continually challenged to maintain their
skills but often other military obligations and the various standards and licensing requirements across provincial health
care systems make this difficult.
One of the other issues relates to the health care needs of military families. Frequent dictated moves mean that they
must look for new family doctors when they are relocated. This is challenging in the communities of many of our
Canadian Forces bases. Although it is not within our mandate or ability to provide health care for our families, we
know that a well-cared-for family improves the well-being and effectiveness of our Canadian Forces members.
A continued review of our compensation package is critical if we are to recruit, motivate and retain the right number
of soldiers, sailors and air personnel with the right skill sets. In this respect, I am pleased with the tremendous value
that the government continues to place on the contributions and sacrifices made by our members.
Since 1996, the pay of officers and non-commissioned members has increased by 49 per cent. Our pay, for the most
part, is competitive, fair and equitable, and is no longer a major dissatisfier, save a few specific concerns. We are also
reviewing our allowances to ensure that they provide appropriate financial recognition for members serving on
operations in specific environments in isolated locations and with specific skills. We continue to review other benefits,
such as our leave policy and our medical and dental programs to ensure that they meet the needs of our military
In the area of pensions, we have a major initiative to modernize the Canadian Forces Superannuation Act to reflect
the evolving human resources management objectives of the department and the Canadian Forces and to give our
members more control over their financial planning and retirement decisions. The new arrangements will bring the
current pension plan in line with those of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police and the public service and will provide
pension coverage to the reserve force members. It will continue to recognize the unique nature of military service by
providing early access to an immediate pension.
The commitment and investment that National Defence and the Canadian Forces have made in military human
resources over recent years has allowed us to address many of our people-related challenges. It has provided us with a
more stable and sustainable planning environment and we have increased flexibility to meet some, but not all, of our
human resources pressures. We have much work to do to ensure that we are ready to face future challenges and to
ensure that we can meet operational commitments.
Senator Meighen: Welcome, Vice-Admiral Jarvis and thank you for your presentation. Many of us have questions
for you. Fortunately, I get to go first. Perhaps I could start with the area of recruitment, which, as you can well
imagine, comes up all the time when we visit various bases.
I was pleased to read in your presentation that you have reduced recruit processing time from 60 days to 35 days for
applicants who do not have medical or security issues. You have also introduced other positive measures.
I appreciate that there is always a lag time, so the complaints have not ceased. The biggest complaint we hear is: ``I
applied, they said `great', and then I heard nothing. I am wondering whether they want me.''
We wonder whether the measures you have introduced will do the job of reducing the waiting time. Do you think
they already have?
You say here that the waiting time is only 35 days for applicants who do not have medical or security issues. It is my
understanding that every applicant has to successfully pass a medical examination. One of the major difficulties that we
hear about is the delay in getting an appointment with a physician. Once you have answered that I will ask you about
contracting out medical services.
VAdm. Jarvis: We have issued direction to the commander of the recruiting group to launch a complete review of
our policies and procedures for the processing of applicants. That directive has led to a list of measures that we hope to
put in place in the near-term and over the long-term.
To take a specific point that you raised in the context of medical examinations, if on initial screening by the
physician assistant in the recruiting centre there are no evident requirements for a follow-on examination by a specialist
or the confirmation of some pre-existing medical condition, we will process the enrolment and assume the risk that
once the application is further reviewed by a medical officer, what we call the part 3, only in rare circumstances will
issues arise. In other words, we are hoping that in the future the medical screening will not be an impediment because
we will do it on the strength of the physician assistant rather than awaiting the results of the assessment of the medical
Senator Meighen: What if you are wrong, despite the best intentions, and a medical issue does surface?
VAdm. Jarvis: If a medical issue surfaces and the physician assistant is not certain that an individual meets the
universality of service principles to which the Canadian Forces must adhere, that individual will have to be referred to
a medical officer.
Senator Meighen: And will not be accepted until you know?
VAdm. Jarvis: That is correct.
Senator Meighen: What if there is no apparent problem at the initial examination? Do I understand you to say you
take them in subject to verification?
VAdm. Jarvis: Yes.
Senator Meighen: Do they sign a release?
VAdm. Jarvis: They will sign a release acknowledging that if anything emerges on the subsequent conduct of the
part 3, the waterfront will have changed.
Senator Meighen: We have heard many complaints about the alternate service delivery concept. Is it working well in
your view, particularly in the medical area, or are there still major problems to be solved?
VAdm. Jarvis: In my view, it is working very well. More to the point, I view it almost as an imperative given the
shortage of uniformed health care professionals today. For example, in our medical officer cadre at the critical rank of
uniformed captain, which bears the brunt of our operational commitments overseas, we are short one-half of what we
need. If we did not utilize contracted medical professionals to backfill for our home or garrison requirements, we
would not be able to provide the health care that our people need on the home front.
I think the program is working fairly well. As you know, it has just been recompeted. We are now with a new service
provider, the Calion group. Initial assessments are very positive and it is working well.
Senator Meighen: You mentioned that you were short 50 per cent.
VAdm. Jarvis: Yes, we are 50 per cent short of uniformed doctors.
Senator Meighen: What are you doing to rectify that situation?
VAdm. Jarvis: That is an ongoing challenge, as I said in my opening remarks.
Senator Meighen: Is that referred to as a ``stress trade?''
VAdm. Jarvis: Most definitely.
Senator Meighen: Perhaps you could talk about that and any other stress trades.
VAdm. Jarvis: We define a stress trade as any trade or occupation where we are 10 per cent or more below our
preferred manning level or required strength. Medical officers over all at this time are about 30 per cent short, but the
critical trade, the captain rank level, is 51 per cent short.
We are endeavouring to make use of alternative service delivery where we can to relieve our uniform cadre on the
home front. We are offering recruiting bonuses for medical officers that range up to $225,000. We are doing everything
we can to compete, just as everyone is, for a very scarce skill set in Canada.
I am pleased to say that our attrition rate for doctors is coming down. A couple of years ago, 80 per cent of our
doctors left at the completion of their obligatory service, in other words, once they had paid back the time they owed us
for us having subsidized their education.
Senator Meighen: Do they have a different engagement contract with you than a soldier?
VAdm. Jarvis: Absolutely. There is obligatory service for us having sponsored their education.
Senator Meighen: What period of time is that?
VAdm. Jarvis: I believe it is in the order of one year of service for every year of education, senator, but I would have
to confirm that for you.
Senator Meighen: Please.
VAdm. Jarvis: I will. It is encouraging that our attrition rate is now down to 40 per cent. Only 40 per cent of the
people who complete their obligatory service are now leaving and 60 per cent are choosing to remain in the forces,
which is a good thing.
Senator Meighen: In your presentation you said:
Although it is not within our mandate or ability to provide health care for our families, we know that a well-
cared-for family improves the well-being and effectiveness of our Canadian Forces members.
That is also something we have come across at a number of bases. Two problems seem to arise. One is the access of
military families to specialists, which is a problem that confronts most Canadians. Nonetheless, it is perhaps even more
serious for Canadian Forces members since many of our bases are not in large urban areas and, consequently, the
number of specialists might be smaller. The other problem is the provision of doctors, let alone specialists, who work in
the official language of the member of the force. Is anything being done to improve those situations?
VAdm. Jarvis: Yes, indeed. This is an area of great concern to us at this time. The reality is that many of our
members' families are having trouble finding a family physician upon relocation. The base commander in Kingston has
established a medical clinic in their military family resource centre. Other bases, such as Borden and Gagetown, have, I
believe, leased space in their CANEX facility on a concession basis to establish private medical clinics.
As you can imagine, there are certain legal issues around this such as liability, et cetera. We have formed a team to
review this from a legal perspective to identify options to alleviate the situation at those units where the problem is
By some reports, access to family health care is currently the number one quality-of-life issue in the army at
Petawawa. This is very high on our agenda at this time, very high on my personal agenda, and my director of quality of
life is leading that initiative for me.
Senator Meighen: Thank you. That is very encouraging to hear. What are the other stress trades in addition to the
VAdm. Jarvis: We have the same challenges that many private sector firms are facing; our high-tech trades and
engineering occupations are particularly stressed. I can provide you, sir, with a complete list of all of our distressed
Senator Meighen: I would think the nursing profession is included in that list.
VAdm. Jarvis: Nurses are 25 per cent under strength at this time. Pharmacists are 44 per cent under strength at this
time. There is quite a list. The key issue for us is which ones are turning the corner and starting to improve and which
ones are not.
I am pleased to state that certainly on the non-commissioned members' side of the house, at our NCM trades we see
the situation starting to improve now. We brought into force a bonus scheme to try to deal with some of the attrition
problems in some of these trades. In 2001 we identified 19 trades that needed attention. I am pleased to state that in
terms of trades that are actually still on the wrong track, we only have five that are still considered critical in terms of
requiring additional financial incentives to ameliorate the situation. We are turning the corner on most.
Senator Meighen: That is good news. If all the airlines are hiring, then the air force is going to be stressed in terms of
keeping its pilots; the reverse is also true. It seems to us that you run up against another problem. That is, it is
monumentally difficult for a former member of the regulars, who has left the regular force, not so much transfer to the
reserves, but transfer from the reserves back to the regular force. Is that still the case? Why is the problem so acute?
VAdm. Jarvis: That is still the case, senator. We still have a number of challenges on that front. My vision is that a
transfer from the reserve force to the regular force should be no more complicated than a posting message. The reality
is, there are a few more issues that we have to resolve before we can get there, but certainly I have issued clear direction,
and we are working toward streamlining that process, and a number of things are being contemplated to achieve that.
Certainly if a reservist, for example, has a valid medical examination that is less than five years old and the person is
under 37 years of age we are going to accept that medical; we will not have them redo it. We will eliminate redundant
processing. We are trying to automate reserve records so we can do a more rapid evaluation of prior skills and
knowledge so that we bring these people in and do not repeat training that they do not need.
There are a number of initiatives that we know we need to take in order to improve that process. This is one of the
issues on my list of priorities, because I will be the first to admit that the current situation leaves much to be desired.
Senator Meighen: You mention automation; it sounds as though that is one of the big problems. We heard on more
than one occasion that it took up to six months to find the record of an individual who had been a regular and then
went out of the regular force and wanted to rejoin.
VAdm. Jarvis: As the records are manual, the records were located at the local unit level and had to be retrieved.
The records had to be analyzed to determine what qualifications the individual did or did not have.
You are absolutely right, senator; automation will help immensely, and we are working on that.
Senator Meighen: This committee has visited the Royal Military College in Kingston. We were pretty convinced that
they are working at 100 per cent, if not more, capacity.
Is there any consideration being given to the reintroduction of what, in my day, was called COTC and UNTD and
those sorts of programs whereby people, in return for payment of their university education, made a commitment to
the Armed Forces at an officer level?
VAdm. Jarvis: No, but we still have and make good use of our university-training program for non-commissioned
members, our regular officer-training program. We subsidize both non-commissioned members and civilians in degree
programs at that institution.
I would like to comment, if I may, on one of the comments you made about the Royal Military College working at
capacity. We have examined options that we might contemplate to actually increase capacity at the college, to actually
increase the percentage of our officer cadre that actually emanates from that institution. We have given thought to
having fourth-year students live off campus, and a number of other measures. All of that is to say we are not convinced
that there are not innovative ways to potentially increase capacity at the institution.
Senator Banks: I am going to pursue Senator Meighen's line of questioning for a moment to let you know how
frustrated I am. This is unfair to dump it entirely on you, but we hear an awful lot from people who say we know that is
a problem and we are working on it and we are working towards that. You have said in this case the question of that
transferability; I like what you said about it, that it should be nothing more than a posting notice, which makes a lot of
sense to us. These people have often been doing the job in the reserve or militia, and then they want to continue to do
the job in the regular forces and there seem to be many impediments.
We have asked that question of your predecessor, General Couture, and he said the same thing as you have when he
was here a couple of years ago, or maybe it was last year. You said that those records used to be held by hand and we
had to go through it completely by hand, a non-automated process, and perhaps that is the answer. It really is
frustrating to us that these things take so long. Why can you not just do that? You are the boss; just do it.
VAdm. Jarvis: If I could, senator, I most certainly would.
Senator Banks: If you cannot, who can?
VAdm. Jarvis: I would not want to do it at this time until we sort out a few key issues. The reality is, for example, if
we look at training, in certain reserve trades and occupations reservists are trained fully to Canadian Forces standards,
because they have been deployed on operations as such, in other cases they have not. There is a need to confirm the
qualifications of an individual so that we do not leave the individual lacking some key training or experience or
developmental opportunity that they need. Once we automate the records, it will make that process much quicker.
I do acknowledge that currently we are averaging, on a component transfer, about 12 months. Our goal is to reduce
that to 90 days. We have, as I say, a number of initiatives in train to do that. Certainly I would welcome the
opportunity to return and report, at the six-month point, in terms of our progress on that front.
I do believe we are on the right track but, when we look at, for example, the level of effort that it will take to fully
automate the manual records, the issues in terms of streamlining the medical process, the issues of doing prior-skills
assessment and ensuring that we are correctly assessing an individual's skills and knowledge so that we do not miss
anything that the individual might need for the trade or occupation that they are contemplating entering, that will take
us a little bit of time.
Senator Banks: In the meantime it actually takes a year to do those?
VAdm. Jarvis: In some cases it can take up to a year to do a component transfer, principally in cases where there is a
part-time reservist seeking to enter another occupation. We must bear in mind that on some occasions reservists wish
to enter occupations that are not open for recruitment at that time. That factors into the time as well.
Senator Banks: Yes, if there is not space there is not a space.
VAdm. Jarvis: Exactly.
Senator Banks: You talked about a new initiative moving the time from 20 years to 25 years of required service
before full annuity is available, before one becomes vested, to use the terms of that industry. I presume you mean for
persons who sign up after April 1, that you are not changing the rules in midstream for somebody who signed on five
VAdm. Jarvis: Your assumption is correct.
Senator Banks: Thank you, I am very glad to hear that.
You talked about the health care for families when they are in a place where there is not otherwise easy access to a
doctor, we have seen as I am sure you have first hand the difficulties that that brings about. I am very hopeful that you
will pursue that issue.
Just off the top of your head and in the most general terms, as a proportion of the DND budget, what is your
budget, your human resources budget?
VAdm. Jarvis: In total?
Senator Banks: As a proportion of the DND budget. You have 7,500 forces people which is somewhere around 13
per centor 14 per cent of the complement. Is it a commensurate part of the budget?
VAdm. Jarvis: It is safe to say that in terms of the defence budget, over one-half of it is spent on people-related
functions and issues. At any one point in time you can be assuredthat 50 cents to 55 cents on the dollar is devoted to
the functional areas for which I am functionally responsible. That includes everything from pay to individual training
Senator Banks: Certainly training is important. Do you have a handle on what proportion of that amount is the
overhead? That is to say the 7,500 military personnel and the other 5,000 or so others? What proportion of the cost is
VAdm. Jarvis: We could approach that question, senator, in many ways. I think it is safe to say, though, that in any
military force, from a people context, there is about 10 per cent overhead. If you look at our people we have about 10
per cent of our military personnel away on training, advance training in the recruit schools, at any given point in time.
Senator Banks: Does the 7,500 that you talked about include the trainers?
VAdm. Jarvis: It does.
Senator Banks: They are not bean counters and administrative people; it includes the trainers.
VAdm. Jarvis: Absolutely, and based upon my previous incarnation in the world of finance, I would have to say that
generally speaking, the human resources military function is a fairly lean function these days. We are facing the same
sorts of pressures as other areas of the defence budget.
Senator Banks: We learned a few weeks ago that thegeneral impression that has been given to the public is that we
have 8,000 new people coming into the military. That is neither a done deal or accomplished or actually in any sense in
The recommendation of this committee went quite a bit further than that. We recommended in the past that there
ought to be an effective strength of 75,000 in the military which would mean somewhere in the ninety-some thousand
as a full establishment, I would think.
How will your intake capacity be able to react if a significant number of those 8,000 people come in over two years
from the time they are funded? Would you be able to handle that given the present infrastructure and capacity?
VAdm. Jarvis: No, nor would I want that to happen from a force planning point of view and a personnel production
point of view.
Senator Banks: From a planning standpoint how many years would it be from the time of the announcement having
been made which was several months ago to the point that we would actually have those 5,000 permanent force people
and 3,000 reserves in place?
VAdm. Jarvis: To do it in an orderly, co-ordinated fashion, without placing undue strain on the capacity of the
training system, it would take five or six years.
If I might just elaborate a bit, we have a case where currently we know that a recruiting group, for example, has the
wherewithal now within or very nearly within existing resource levels to recruit an additional thousand people a year.
Essentially, we have some surplus capacity that could handle an increase like that over five or six years. If we look at
some of our training institutions, however — setting aside combat arms where we know there is a bit of flexibility in
terms of training at this time given the respite that they have been given to a certain extent from operations — our
support training institutions are pretty well operating at full capacity. In order to qualify our support trades and
occupations, many of which have long periods of training, we would have to make significant investments and that
would mean pulling qualified instructors off the line to augment the training establishments in the face of potentially
competing operational demands.
In the case of the recruit school, we are operating very near capacity. We would have to in order to even cope with a
thousand extra people a year, probably establish a satellite-base recruit course somewhere. There are a whole host of
considerations that when you bring these together from my perspective as a force planner, and seeking to avoid the
type of downstream impacts that we saw with the rapid force reduction program where we have a huge experience
trough where we had to put in place a recruiting surge to try to fill that gap and at the same time to try to keep people
longer than we would ideally like in terms of a perfect, if you will, career profile in terms of time in and years of service.
There are a whole host of considerations which would suggest setting aside any potential budgetary limitations there
might be in terms of how quickly we can implement this. I am not sure we would want to do it any faster than five or
Senator Banks: Correct me if I am wrong. The thousand or so that the present recruiting apparatus takes in was sort
of in the normal state and did not contemplate this additional 8,000 people all of whom are sooner or later going to
have basic training. The 5,000 permanent force new members are over and above the normal intake of a thousand
which takes care of attrition and retirements. Have I got that right?
VAdm. Jarvis: No, this would be for the recruiting group which recruits 6,000 people to 8,000 people a year regular
and reserve. It would be for them to add a thousand on top of that.
Senator Banks: Yes, it is over and above the normal intake.
VAdm. Jarvis: It is.
Senator Banks: What you are saying is over the next five years you could accommodate in some senses in basic arms
training at least, the additional 5,000 people?
VAdm. Jarvis: We could recruit them. We could train those occupations or those individuals destined for the combat
arms. Concerning the support trades and occupations, I am not sure what we would gain by bringing in the combat
arms first. We could do that, but then we would not have the support personnel to deploy them.
Senator Banks: It will be five years before we have them in the system and the last of them are beginning to be
VAdm. Jarvis: If we bring the first 1,000 in an organized package, which is a combination of not only combat arms
but also supporting occupations and trades, that first group would obviously be ready for operations earlier than the
Senator Banks: To be able to use these 5,000 people as a deployable force, which is what we were talking about
unless I totally misunderstood, we will have to have a brigade-sized group that we can send out to do the job.
VAdm. Jarvis: I have to defer that question to Admiral Buck who is responsible for force structure.
Senator Banks: You mentioned the respite that has enabled you to get the training capacity up closer to where you
would like it to be. We visited Camp Borden and Kingston several months ago, and we found a significant number of
recruits who were frustrated by the fact they had been recruited but were not getting any training. They were sitting
around twiddling their thumbs. Has that problem been alleviated?
VAdm. Jarvis: The situation is improving, senator. We refer to these people as personnel awaiting training, or
PATs.The post-recruit education and training centre we have established has done a lot to ensure we are doing
something useful and meaningful with these people. While they are waiting for their courses to start we give them
concrete skills; weapons qualification level 2 certification, driving training and computer skills. We also give them work
assignments. We send them out across the country to various bases and stations to give them work assignments in their
particular field while they are awaiting training.
The situation for those who are still in the system awaiting training has improved dramatically, and the number of
PATs is coming down dramatically.
The other thing we have done is that we did go fromjust-in-time recruiting, where we brought them in just before
their course started, to real-time recruiting, which meant we hired them no matter when the course was going to start
because we perceived that we were losing people while they were waiting for their enrolment offer. We have scaled that
back somewhere to what we call ``near real-time recruiting,'' to try to reduce the gap. I was recently down in Gagetown
and the situation has improved dramatically in the last several months.
Senator Banks: I want to make sure before I stand down, chair, that everyone understand when we said ``PATs,'' we
were not talking about Patricia's, who are very offended by the use of that term.
The Chairman: I would hope you would say ``Princess'' before that.
Senator Day: I want to start with just a point of clarification from your presentation. There is a lot of education and
training that goes on in the Armed Forces, and quite rightly. Do they all report through you?
VAdm. Jarvis: For the most part, subsidized education in all its forms is under my purview. In the context of
training, I have the majority of common trades training, that is trades' training that is common to all three
occupations. I have a number of schools that provide recruits that serve in the army, navy and air force.
Senator Day: If there is training that is specific to the air force or navy or army, is that handed by a different group?
VAdm. Jarvis: Absolutely. All combat arms training is under the purview of General Caron.
Senator Day: Part of the confusion perhaps is that a number of people that we spoke to had completed their general
training and were waiting for their specific training. As I understand you that is not a part of your focus.
VAdm. Jarvis: That is correct. The personnel awaiting training for the combat arms occupations are located at bases
such as Gagetown under General Caron's purview. For the most part, the personnel awaiting training that are under
my purview are those individuals who are waiting for a support occupation trade course of some sort.
Senator Day: Is someone in a support occupation such as communications or signals under your purview?
VAdm. Jarvis: Yes, the communications' school and electronics school is under my purview.
Senator Day: The young member we met in Kingston was in the signal side, and he was given alternate employment
for almost a year; he was working at a local bar while he waited for his training. That is what he was up to.
VAdm. Jarvis: That is the very reason we formed thepost-recruit education and training centre, so we could start
doing something meaningful with these people. I encountered that as well in my travels when I first assumed the
position, and I found that equally unacceptable, senator.
Senator Day: I commend you on your efforts in relation to human resources. It is tremendously important within
the Armed Forces, and we believe that in this committee. So often, the focus of most of the newspapers and the
electronic media is with respect to equipment, new tanks, boats and planes; but it is extremely important that we not
lose the focus on what makes the Armed Forces. That is the individuals you have, and the challenges that you have in
running an Armed Forces from that point of view.
I will ask you about the alternate service delivery aspect of the Armed Forces. This program has been introduced in
many different places. I have the sense, and a number of us have the sense, that it was introduced as a cost-saving
means back in the 1990s, when you had to save everywhere and withdrew to just your core activities.
Has anyone analyzed the various alternate service delivery programs that have been implemented to determine
whether that was a good idea, and whether it is working and whether it is in the best interests of the Armed Forces to
continue with that outside service rather than having the Armed Forces do it themselves?
VAdm. Jarvis: To be perfectly honest, this would be more the purview of our chief of review services, Mr. Jim Van
Adel, whose staff handles the issues concerning alternative service delivery propositions.
I will add that from the perspective of the humanresources-military group, I do not see cost saving as the principal
driver for considering alternative service delivery. The principal driver is to find innovative ways of filling real gaps in
meeting our requirements and hopefully, in the process, to free more uniformed personnel for duties closer to the scene
of operations. That is why when you look at the stresses and strains we have in our medical group at this time, why the
Calian contract is so important to us.
Senator Day: At one time, there was a hospital in Kingston. Now you are saying you are putting a clinic in the
family resource centre.
VAdm. Jarvis: The decision was made to close our military hospitals in the early 1990s in the context of the
downsizing, and since that time we have managed to live within our budgetary allocations. There is no question that
our medical service suffered significantly, as did many areas of the Canadian Forces at the time.
Very clearly, through the RX-2000 initiative that is ongoing, we are talking about the re-establishment of a level of
care that our members are entitled to and should have.
Senator Day: From the point of view of human resources, do you look at the physical training personnel and realize
that you should have those individuals back in the Armed Forces performing to perform very important functions for
young recruits? Do you look at bands and orchestras that we used to have with the Armed Forces as important in
terms of developing spirit? We should not have abandoned the many regimental bands that we had.
VAdm. Jarvis: I am the functional authority for bands. The director of music reports to me and we still have a
number of bands in the Canadian Forces. During my time in the world of finance, when decisions were taken to
eliminate some of the bands, a number of tough decisions had to be made to live within the budget allocation.
Senator Day: Many of these decisions were based on budgetary constraints and I recognize that fact. From a
personnel point of view, do you not think that because we are moving back in the right direction and people recognize
we need not only ships but we also have to look after some of our people.
Are you discussing these issues when you talk about improving the quality of life of our personnel?
VAdm. Jarvis: The discussions around quality of life are principally focused on the needs of our new recruits and
today's new organization. We are dealing with an older force than we have had in the past. The average age of recruits
is over 24 years and the average age of the forces is 37 years. People entering the Armed Forces have families and that
presents a whole new series of challenges in terms of needs and expectations. That is why family health care is critical to
us in resolving this issue. If the question is whether physical fitness trainers are front and centre at this time, no, they
are not. The Canadian Forces personnel support agency that employs the contract for physical fitness trainers is
blessed by the fact that there are former military physical fitness trainers working in that organization, but there are
other issues of concern at this time.
Senator Day: Are you constrained by the amount of money that is available to you in creating your priorities? Do
you have sufficient funds to do the job that you want to do?
VAdm. Jarvis: I would put more money into health care. The second thing I would do is augment our budget for
moving members from location to location to ensure that Canadian Forces requirements are met. We face many
constraints in that area.
I do not want to infer that I am in any different position than any of my peers or colleagues in National Defence. We
all face pressures and we do not have as much money or as many resources as we would like to have. Some tough
decisions have to be taken.
Senator Day: I will conclude on this alternate service delivery aspect. Have you contemplated using alternate service
delivery for recruiting?
There are hiring agencies all over the country and you have outside medical services that are performed in the local
communities. When someone goes off on recruiting, why is that not viewed as a positive career move? If that is the
thinking, then why do we continue to have military people doing recruiting when an alternate service delivery could
function in that capacity?
VAdm. Jarvis: That is an excellent question. You may be interested to note that my commander and I recently
visited Australia. We specifically examined their experience in terms of outsourcing recruiting. They have joint
recruiting centres in Australia whereby a firm called ``Manpower'' is providing the civilian recruiting expertise. They
still have a military complement in all of their major centres but through this initiative, they were able to reduce their
military complement by about two thirds. We have that on our agenda to look at in the coming months.
Senator Day: I look forward to your deliberations and the outcome.
Senator Forrestall: I suppose we should all go to Australia to find such good resolutions.
What is the status of the pension plan of the reserves? Could you bring us up to date on that, in particular with
respect to when those eligible will receive some benefit?
VAdm. Jarvis: As you may know, a full project team stood up and we have two parallel thrusts of activity. One
thrust is focused upon finding the technical solution necessary to put this in place through the use of our Canadian
Forces pay system and the other thrust is writing all the associated regulations. These are proceeding along fairly well
and they are coming together. Our target is to have this in place by the end of this calendar year.
Senator Forrestall: We expected this before the end of 2004. Why is there a one year delay?
VAdm. Jarvis: Certainly, this has not been as simple as we envisioned at the outset. I am not sure that other
experiences of introducing new pension schemes have been done any faster, although I do take your point, senator,
that there have been delays but that is probably because we were optimistic in setting our time lines. There are technical
issues around finding a temporary solution through the use of our pay system as opposed to waiting for the integrated
government-wide solution for federal pension services, which is coming into the 2008 time frame. I am fairly confident
at this time that things are on track and at the end of 2005 is still achievable.
Senator Forrestall: For the sake of those eligible, I do hope that you are 100 per cent correct because they are
becoming a little angry over the delay, and I think with justification.
VAdm. Jarvis: I agree.
Senator Forrestall: I would like to pursue whether the date was bad advice at the outset. There are many questions,
as you said, because of time and other restrictions.
Could I take you back to the 5,000 permanent and3,000 reserves? As they come in, have you given thought to
distribution? I am curious as to whether the army will receive90 per cent and the navy 4 per cent, for example. Have
you any idea how those numbers will be distributed across the three branches?
VAdm. Jarvis: I cannot speak to that because that is the purview of Admiral Buck and his staff. It is my
responsibility to implement.
Senator Forrestall: Have you received any instructions to date on the detailed planning?
VAdm. Jarvis: We are doing detailed planning and I have a force expansion tiger team working closely with the vice-
chief staff to position us for this distribution. We have sufficient information at this time so that our plan is proceeding
apace but I do not have the specific breakdown of the numbers to army, navy and air force.
Senator Forrestall: I have been thinking about the importation of all these men and women in a relatively short
period of time. Most of the trades training could be done on the outside. I am thinking of high schools encouraging
young men and women to get their first two years of training for a trade. I am thinking of when a school bus fleet was
out of commission because they did not have enough people to check the batteries.
Have you given any thought to outside training?
VAdm. Jarvis: Yes, and that is an excellent question. As you may know, we do a certain amount of this now. We
have contracts with a number of community colleges for technical trades training. We are also increasingly
encouraging people to get a certain amount of related education and experience up front. We make it clear in our
recruiting information what we are looking for. This information is being disseminated by a number of means. I can
foresee doing more in this area with civilian education institutions because we want to capitalize on the capacity of the
civilian education sector to the maximum extent possible.
I recently had a meeting with my colleagues at Social Development Canada where we were looking at certification
for our military occupations so that it will be easier for them to transition out, as well as in, to civilian employment
upon leaving. That is an area that I see growing.
Senator Forrestall: Have you thought of putting our trades instructors into the CÉGEPs and community colleges to
assist in the final months leading to trade certification?
VAdm. Jarvis: We have a number of embedded instructors now.
Senator Forrestall: I am very pleased to hear that.
In some of their trades areas the United States has enormous overcapacity for training as a result of some of their
military acquisition programs and they are farming out a lot of empty seats, in reverse, to the private sector.
Have we thought of sending recruits either down to the United States or over to the U.K? I have no idea what the
situation is in the U.K., but it might produce 500 seats for training in the run of a year, which would be an enormous
relief on your trainers.
VAdm. Jarvis: We currently conduct a certain amount of training with the allies, but not to the extent you envision.
We have probably not looked at that as closely as we should. However, now that you have posed the question, I can
assure you that we will.
Senator Forrestall: I was thinking of calibration trades, the hands-on trades with tools.
Senator Atkins: How would you handle the application of an individual who has diabetes?
VAdm. Jarvis: I would defer to the surgeon general on that. It is my understanding that if the individual has diabetes
upon application, the individual would not meet the medical standard for enrolment under the universality of service
principle. However, I can provide you a more detailed response on that through the office of the surgeon general.
Senator Atkins: What do you do about an individual who becomes diabetic after being recruited?
VAdm. Jarvis: We have a policy that endeavours to accommodate a certain percentage of our force. We now have in
excess of 600 members who do not meet the universality of service principle. We work with these people to achieve a
couple of things: if they are close to a key term of service point, we continue to employ them to get them past the
pension hurdle, and, we also work with Veterans Affairs Canada. We have a transition assistance program to try to
transition them to civilian employment.
We do have the universality of service principle in terms of our medical standards to which we do attempt to adhere,
but we have been accommodating a fair percentage of our force in an effort to transition them to civilian employment.
Senator Atkins: There must be lots of jobs in the military that a diabetic could do.
VAdm. Jarvis: Assuming the individual did not have to deploy, I agree with you. Our standard is intended to ensure
that all members of the force are fit and ready to deploy; that is our goal. In the absence of that, those who are
physically fit end up bearing the brunt of the burden.
We endeavour to be as compassionate as possible, but we have not deviated, other than in our accommodation
policy, from our universality of service principle, which I personally believe is fundamental to having an effective
Senator Atkins: Is the incidence of post traumatic stress disorder increasing?
VAdm. Jarvis: Our incidence of mental health issues is rising across the board. As a matter of fact, mental health
issues now represent 42 per cent of our sick leave usage. We are seeing this phenomenon in many Eestern industrialized
societies and beyond. There are many pressures out there.
In terms of diagnosis, clinical depression is more prevalent than post traumatic stress disorder at this time. This issue
is very high on our list of concerns. We are studying it closely and the surgeon general is intimately engaged in this
disorder. At this time, the majority of our sick leave is mental health related. These tend to be the issues that result in
people being out for longer periods of time. Musculoskeletal issues are down to about 22 per cent of sick leave.
Mental health in general is a concern. As I said, the incidence of mental health issues is rising in the country as a
whole and our forces are certainly not immune to that.
Senator Atkins: How are incidents of sexual abuse and harassment being dealt with? I ask this question because it
was featured on 60 Minutes last night.
VAdm. Jarvis: We have a very strict policy on harassment in the institution. I am quite confident that we are
infinitely better dealing with these issues today than we were five years ago and I am confident we will be that much
better again five years from now. Certainly we are a large, complex and diverse organization. We still are dealing with
these issues. However, they are no less of a priority today, nor will they become so in future.
Senator Atkins: What is the process of a complaint in terms of being heard?
VAdm. Jarvis: I can provide the detailed policy to your staff. I would be happy to do that. It is very rigorous and
very well defined.
Senator Atkins: That is good to hear.
The Chairman: Admiral, if you could provide it to the clerk, please.
VAdm. Jarvis: Absolutely.
Senator Atkins: On another subject, what is your budget for communications and promotion for recruitment?
VAdm. Jarvis: I stand to be corrected, but I believe currently it is in the order of $5 billion to $6 million a year. I can
get you that detailed figure, senator. Certainly, that is the major national campaign budget.
Senator Atkins: For all services?
VAdm. Jarvis: Yes, and I am responsible for recruiting for all three services.
Senator Atkins: One question about the reserve in terms of funding. What we have found is that the reserve officers
are expressing that they are underfunded and that they could not deal with a full turnout on a regular basis. The
maximum, based on their budgets, would be at least 75 per cent.
Is there any thought about increasing their budgets to address that problem?
VAdm. Jarvis: I would have to defer that question to the commanders of the army, navy and air force and the
communications reserve because those budgets are handled by those respective officers for their reserve components. I
could not answer that question, to be honest, senator.
Senator Atkins: For my last question, I return to the COTC and you referred to the military.
VAdm. Jarvis: The regular officer training program?
Senator Atkins: Yes. Why would it not be a good idea to put recruitment offices on all campuses, and do it on a
regional basis? In view of student debts and high tuition costs, this would be a natural area for recruitment.
VAdm. Jarvis: I cannot speak to whether or not that specific possibility has been examined in the recent past. It
certainly has not been examined in my time. I must conclude that the reason for that is that we are meeting our
recruiting targets through our existing centres which have to be maintained. It is probably a question of resources and
whether or not we need to do that in order to meet our targets. As I said in my opening remarks, we are meeting 99 per
cent of our targets, aside from stress trades and occupations. I am not sure it would help us in respect of those latter
trades and occupations to do that type of recruiting.
Senator Atkins: That is under the present circumstances. If you are to increase your recruitment levels, however,
would not that be an area to revisit? It would help in other ways, for example in promoting the military.
VAdm. Jarvis: At this time we point in time, we receive about two and one-half applicants for every individual we
take and we have many more that we do not take that meet all of the criteria. Certainly, if we were in a position where
we were not meeting our targets, needless to say we would rapidly jump outside the box and start to look at
alternatives. At this point in time, based upon our initial planning, I think we could do this over five or six years
through the existing resources and existing structures.
The Chairman: Admiral, I am appalled at the five-year time period to get 5,000 new troops into the forces. First, if I
understood your answer correctly, the rate limiting step is the stress trades.
VAdm. Jarvis: If I could expand upon that, there are a number of factors that come into play here. When we look at
our support trades and occupations, they typically take longer to train than our combat arms occupations. To bring
the 5,000 or 6,000 in any more quickly than this would probably result in the same sort of forced planning scenario that
we had when we conducted the force reduction program, only in the reverse.
In the case of the force reduction program, we had a huge experience trough and ended up having to put in place a
recruiting surge that brought a whole bunch of people into the whole bunch of people into the system very quickly. We
had to keep people longer in order to fill that trough as well.
Currently, the training system is finding itself in a position where the people we initially recruited during the
recruiting stage are coming back now for their journeyman level training; what we call qualification level 5. We have
here a case of where we have to worry about development of our existing force and trying to manage an increase at the
same time. We have the same training resources doing both the qualification level 3, that is, the basic initial trades
training and the qualification level 5 training and the rank levels. Most impacted by this are the master corporals, the
sergeants and the captains. They bear the brunt of the training load.
If we want to ensure that we cater for the increase, at the same time that we are continuing the development of our
existing force we must carefully plan how we will tackle this particular training challenge.
The Chairman: I understand that, admiral. You qualified it by saying that you needed to have the capability to
deploy. Is that correct?
VAdm. Jarvis: In the case of recruiting, if we bringin 1,000 people and they are all, for example, combat arms,
recognizing that support trades and occupations are the limiting factor often times in deployments these days, we
wouldhave 1,000 people on the ground without the capacity in terms of an integrated force structure point of view
The Chairman: I understand that but you also implied that the only way you could increase the training for your
stress trades would be if you took people out of existing units.
VAdm. Jarvis: Yes.
The Chairman: That would limit the capacity of Canadian Forces to deploy.
VAdm. Jarvis: That is correct, senator.
The Chairman: So what? Who cares if they do not deploy? What is wrong with them not deploying?
VAdm. Jarvis: I really could not comment on that, senator. Our objective is to deliver forces that are capable of
The Chairman: I understand that, but we have gone through a period where we have not been deploying our troops
and it is because the forces have been overused. We are under strength. What is wrong if we keep the pause on longer?
Have you been given a spending profile that you are instructed to meet? Has the Canadian Forces been given a
spending profile by the government that they will provide money out over five years? Are you working to that or vice
VAdm. Jarvis: I have certainly not been given a spending profile at this time. I approach the question from a
personal production point of view and how could I manage this increase in an integrated way to cater to the training
and development needs of the new people entering the forces without compromising the training and development
needs of those currently in the service.
The Chairman: Right, but the way you could fix it is by having fewer troops deployed for the next couple of years.
You could accomplish a great deal of training if you did that, if I understood you correctly.
VAdm. Jarvis: Certainly in some trades and occupations, that would be true. That would alleviate matters
significantly, just as the respite from operations has served to ameliorate stresses on our most deployed folks.
The Chairman: Has there been consideration of that sort of continued pause?
VAdm. Jarvis: That is the purview of the Deputy Chief of the Defence Staff and I have not been engaged in that
The Chairman: Current policy states that a member must have at least one year home between major deployments
with no separation from family for the first 60 days upon return from deployment. You are currently reviewing that to
see if these periods are adequate.
VAdm. Jarvis: Correct.
The Chairman: What about the proposal that we have heard that, over a 36 month period, a soldier could expect to
be put in harm's way for six months, to be placed on training or be a trainer for four months, and be away from his or
her family for a total of 10 months out of 36 months. Is that doable?
VAdm. Jarvis: The research has not been completed. Certainly, it would be doable, but I am not sure that is the way
we want to go.
Previously, we tended to be focused on operations tempo, which was focused only upon DCDS-controlled
operations overseas. The reality is that all time away from home, be it for training or temporary duty or whatever, puts
pressures and strains on a family. The question that I pose is the following: Should we, for example, on the other side
of the spectrum, consider prorating this respite from operations?
Maybe it should not be a year after six months; maybe it should be six months after two. There are shorter periods
of time away that research would indicate in some cases is deleterious to our folks, so we are currently doing research
to determine just what the balance is. As I said, we know that too much time away is damaging, but so is too little time
away for service.
The Chairman: How much discussion do you have with your colleague the commander of the army about this issue?
VAdm. Jarvis: It is discussed at Armed Forces Council quite frequently.
The Chairman: He sat in this chair within the past three weeks and advised us that this is the plan starting January 1,
VAdm. Jarvis: The commander of the army made that position?
The Chairman: Yes, sir, right where you are sitting.
VAdm. Jarvis: I am sure he would have been talking in the context of a vision for the army. The deputy chief of
defence staff is, of course, the authority for international deployments. Certainly, it is among many options that are
currently on the table in the context of this policy development work.
The Chairman: We will review the transcripts, but he did not seem equivocal on it. It was in the context of being able
to deploy two groups of a thousand each, sustained indefinitely and surged to an extra thousand once every second
year. The corollary question was how much time do the troops spend with their families, and the answer was six
months in harm's way and four months in training. The question then was when would it start, and the answer was,
January 1, 2006. Could you clarify this and get back to the committee?
VAdm. Jarvis: I will indeed, senator.
The Chairman: My next question has to do with pay for folks overseas. We are familiar with the bonus system and
also a tax holiday for individuals who meet a certain level of harm. There is also something in place for folks at level 3
and level 4.
There is not something in place for people in level 1 who are away for long periods of time, and, at level 2, our
understanding is that it is on a case-by-case basis.
Is there any compensation for people simply because they are being separated from their families for a long period
of time? It has nothing to do with risk, or with harm's way, but just for the impact on them and their families because
they are away from home for a long time. They are not enjoying family life, or they are facing other stresses and
VAdm. Jarvis: One of the factors that is considered in the development of military compensation in general is the
disutility of military life, frequent moves, time away from home and so on. There is not a specific allowance simply for
being away from home if there are no hardships, risks or other mitigating factors. If an individual is, for example,
proceeding on a one-year assignment, we will allow that individual to proceed on imposed restriction, which then gives
the individual benefits in terms of rent and accommodation funding, so that he or she does not have to uproot the
The Chairman: I can think of a particular camp that folks go to for six months at a time on a rotation, and would
you not accept that simply being away from your family for a six-months of itself a hardship?
VAdm. Jarvis: It is indeed a hardship. If there is some specific issue in the allowance structure that the committee
wants to have examined, I am happy to do that. May I ask, senator, which camp to which you refer?
The Chairman: I am referring to Camp Mirage.
VAdm. Jarvis: I would be happy to examine that issue, and we know that our people in Camp Mirage all have a
number of concerns with the current allowance structure. To be frank, our allowance structure in general is currently
under review. We know it is not perfect, and we have been engaged in a number of discussions with Treasury Board
officials and others on this matter.
The Chairman: The issue is not unique to Camp Mirage. It is a good example, but it seems to me that in a number of
cases individuals not only are on the six-month posting but also come back and then find themselves off to someplace
else. At the end of a period of time, they are away from home for a very long time. I do not think anything can make up
for that time away from home.
Having said that, some form of monetary compensation might ease the way and be a reasonable thing. It is hard to
think of many jobs where someone pulls up, says goodbye to the family and does not see them again for six months on
a regular, ongoing basis.
VAdm. Jarvis: As someone who has spent up to a year away from his family on imposed restriction undergoing
training, I can only echo that these are very real issues for our people. We do not have at this time, senator, an
allowance simply for being away, other than the general allowance provisions that reflect the fact that in the context of
operations, you are going to an area where there are hardship risks and other foreign duty allowance considerations.
However, I can attempt to respond more fully to your concerns in the fullness of time.
The Chairman: I am asking that separation be included in the definition of hardship. We are aware of the incidents
of family breakdown, and we are aware of the incidence of stress. I do not think you can cure it with money entirely,
but it might go some way to making the families feel that the Canadian Forces and the Canadian people appreciate the
fact that working away from home that long is very burdensome.
VAdm. Jarvis: We have a joint Treasury Board/Canadian Forces Advisory Group that meets routinely and
examines these issues. I will bring this to the agenda. I suspect that it will be an analysis of the extent to which this sort
of consideration is taken into the development of the overall compensation structure, but I will bring it to the agenda
and be happy to report back.
The Chairman: I would appreciate that. It would seem to be something this might reflect in terms of family
breakdown, in terms of illness or wellness in a general sense, and I would be very grateful if we could have a response to
My last question, sir, relates to how closely the face of the military resembles the face of Canada. By that, I am
talking about how significantly the population of Canada has changed over the last couple of decades. I am curious to
know whether you have measures to indicate how it matches now. I am also curious to know about what the Canadian
Forces see looking out into the future in 10 years or 20 years. How different will Canada be and how will the people
recruited by the forces change to match the changing demographic of the nation?
VAdm. Jarvis: That is an excellent question and an issue of great concern.
It is fair to say that we have as a clear long-term objective to have a Canadian Forces that truly reflects in all respects
the Canada it serves. We are not there. We have firm targets that we are working towards, but we do not do as well at
attracting visible minorities and Aboriginals in particular as we should. When one looks at the horizon and realizes
that by 2045 or so visible minorities will likely represent the majority of Canadians, we have to get much better in the
area of attracting and retaining them.
That is why I have a hard and fast rule about that, and I have told my commander of the recruiting group that I do
not want to see any promotional material for the Armed Forces that does not reflect diversity because that is where our
future is. Therefore, it is an issue of major concern. We do have firm targets, and we have to do a whole lot better than
we have been at attracting these new talent pools of Canadians.
The Chairman: How do you see the future changing?
VAdm Jarvis: I see the future changing and I think it is changing now, by virtue of the focus that we have on
diversity in the institution right now. I am the Co-Chair of the Defence Diversity Council with my counterpart on the
civilian human resources side. We have advisory groups covering the four designated groups. We explore initiatives,
issues and concerns. We try to do everything we can to transform the institution to make it more culturally
accommodating, because one of the challenges we have is that recruiting these new Canadians is one thing, and
retaining them is quite another. We recognize that the face of the institution has to evolve as the country is evolving.
We are determined to achieve that goal. This is a very high priority for me personally. I am the champion for
Aboriginals and my objective is to see that all designated groups, particularly visible minorities and Aboriginals,
increase in terms of their representation within the force.
The Chairman: Thank you on behalf of the committee, I want you to know that we appreciate you coming. You
have provided us with a great deal of information. You have also promised us additional information that we will look
forward to receiving. I suspect that the area in which you work will continue to be of great interest to us and I expect
that we will be asking you to come back again.
On behalf of the committee we are very grateful that you have come today and provided us with so much
information. For the members of the public who are viewing this program, if you have any questions or comments,
please visit our website by going to www.sen-sec.ca. We post witness testimony as well as confirm hearing schedules,
otherwise, you may contact the clerk of the committee by calling 1-800-267-7362 for further information or assistance
in contacting members of the committee.