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PHOTO FEATURE

Canadians are mourning the tragic loss of another member of the Canadian Armed Forces after Capt Jenn Casey died in a Snowbirds accident in Kamloops. The cause of the crash is under investigation.

PHOTO FEATURE

All of us at FrontLine join with Canada in offering heart-felt condolences to the friends and family of each of the five missing CAF members. A repatriation ceremony took place on 6 May 2020.

PHOTO FEATURE

All of us at FrontLine join with Canada in offering heart-felt condolences to the friends and family of each of the five missing CAF members. A repatriation ceremony took place on 6 May 2020.

PHOTO FEATURE

All of us at FrontLine join with Canada in offering heart-felt condolences to the friends and family of each of the five missing CAF members. A repatriation ceremony took place on 6 May 2020.

PHOTO FEATURE

All of us at FrontLine join with Canada in offering heart-felt condolences to the friends and family of each of the five missing CAF members. A repatriation ceremony took place on 6 May 2020.

PHOTO FEATURE

Partial remains of Capt MacDonald have now been identified. FrontLine joins with Canada in offering heart-felt condolences to friends and family. A repatriation ceremony took place on 6 May 2020.

PHOTO FEATURE

All of us at FrontLine join with Canada in offering heart-felt condolences to the friends and family of SLt Abbigail Cowbrough. A repatriation ceremony took place on 6 May 2020.

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IN THE NEWS

May 29

Navantia, a Spanish state-owned shipbuilder, has formed a joint venture with Northern Ireland’s Harland & Wolff to pursue a contract for up to three logistics ships which would support the Royal Navy’s new Queen Elizabeth-class aircraft carriers. The British defence ministry cancelled the program last year, saying initial bids did not represent value for money, but is expected to restart the procurement in September.

May 29

Three contracts worth a combined $1.425 billion for upgrades to Kuwait’s Patriot missile defence system have been approved by the U.S. Defense Security Cooperation Agency. Still subject to congressional endorsement and then negotiation of details, the upgrades are described as necessary for “greater security for its critical oil and natural gas infrastructure.”

May 29

Italian Defence Minister Lorenzo Guerini is rejecting calls on his government to cancel its procurement of Lockheed Martin F-35 fighters. Responding to calls by another political party which wants funds redirected to rebuilding the country’s economy in a post COVID-19 environment, he counters that cancellation would damage an industrial sector which offers “very significant economic returns to our nation.”

May 28

An initial round of some 6,700 layoffs by the Boeing Co. will have its greatest impact on the aerospace giant’s commercial aircraft division but only a minimal effect on its military development and manufacturing divisions. “The ongoing stability of our defense, space and related services businesses will help us limit overall impact, and we will continue hiring talent to support critical programs and meet our customers’ evolving needs,” a spokesman said 27 May.

May 27

In the early morning of 27 May 2020, a combined Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) and United States Navy (USN) search and recovery team deployed a remotely-operated vehicle at the crash site and quickly located the remains of fallen CAF personnel and a large piece of the fuselage at a depth of 3,143 metres.

May 27

Canadian Armed Forces personnel deployed to help civil authorities with long-term care facilities during the COVID-19 crisis have confirmed conditions in facilities which critics say have been known for some time. A CAF report states that personnel found that equipment was used on both infected and non-infected patients without being disinfected, and that a disregard for basic cleanliness had resulted in insect infestation and rotten food.

May 27

Russia says the U.S. administration’s impending withdrawal from the Open Skies Treaty will erode global security by making it more difficult for governments to interpret the intentions of other nations. President Donald Trump’s justification for the decision has been that Russian violations made it untenable for the U.S. to remain involved.

May 27

The U.S. public is being asked to comment on the White House’s strategy for controlling the evolution of fifth-generational telecommunications networks. The administration and the Department of Defense are pushing for the removal of what they see as “foreign adversaries” from the 5G supply chain, notably China’s Huawei telecom giant.

May 27

Hundreds of Taliban prisoners were released 26 May by the Afghan government in what is described as the single largest release since the U.S. and Taliban leaders signed a peace agreement earlier this year. The government announced it would release 900 prisoners as a three-day ceasefire was drawing to an end.

May 27

Glenn Fine, deputy inspector general in the Department of Defense, resigned 26 May after he had been effectively removed as head of a special board auditing the government’s $2.2-trillion COVID-19 economic relief package. His departure is the latest in a series of what are seen as political moves by the administration to curb its critics.

May 26

Billie Flynn, the former RCAF pilot who has been a test lead on Lockheed Martin’s development of the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter, was at the controls during two flights which damaged the aircraft’s stealth coating and tail. The incidents raised concerns about the F-35’s supersonic capabilities but Flynn has opted to set the record straight.

May 26

Initial height requirements for prospective pilots has been scrapped by the U.S. Air Force in a bid to encourage more female candidates. The long-standing policy, applicable for all types of aircraft, essentially limited candidates to between 5′4″ and 6′5″ standing or 34-40” seated. The new type-specific approach will use “anthropometric screening” as a first step.

May 26

The global simulator giant, CAE Inc., has reported a 44.3 percent drop in net income in its latest quarter because of travel restrictions and closures related to COVID-19. CAE President and CEO Marc Parent said military work was particularly affected.

May 26

A six per cent increase in its defence budget for 2020, to the equivalent of $178.2 billion from last year’s $167 billion is China’s lowest annual hike in nearly three decades.

May 26

The same day the U.S. warned vessels in the Persian Gulf against approaching within 100 yards of its warships, it demonstrated its defensive capabilities by having a Lockheed Martin AC-130W “Stinger” gunship conduct a live-fire exercise. The threat perimeter was announced after Iranian gunboats carried out “dangerous and provocative” approaches to several USN and Coast Guard vessels.

May 26

ThyssenKrupp Marine Systems has announced that it will buy a shipyard in southern Brazil to build that country’s new Tamandaré-class frigates. The German company heads the Águas Azuis consortium, which is building an initial four ships.

May 26

President Donald Trump’s decision to withdraw the U.S. from the multinational Open Skies Treaty could a pose a strategic challenge for Canada, according to Rob Huebert, who teaches political science at the University of Calgary. He says Canada can either stick to its long-standing policy of supporting such agreements or risk looking “like a toady” by following Trump’s lead.

May 26

The first of five Iranian tankers loaded with gasoline arrived safely in Venezuela over the weekend with the others expected this week. The U.S. had signalled its displeasure and both countries breaching sanctions but there were no signs of interference with the initial traffic.

May 26

The prospect of having to deal with an estimated 900,000 pieces of debris in low-earth orbit when planning future space missions has prompted the UK Space Agency to set aside £1 million for research grants on how to sense and track objects which could be a threat.

May 25

Russian hackers are suspected of spreading COVID-19 pandemic disinformation about the Canadian-led NATO battle group in Latvia. “Definitely not true,” the task force commander, Col Eric Laforest, says of recent reports in some Baltic and Eastern European media that there was “a high number” of cases among the CAF at Camp Adazi near the capital city Riga.

May 25

A directed energy weapon developed by Northrop Grumman has been tested successfully against an unmanned aerial vehicle. The Laser Weapon System Demonstrator was fired from the amphibious transport dock ship USS Portland last week at an undisclosed Pacific location.

May 25

The Venezuelan military says it is preparing to protect five tankers expected to deliver Iranian gasoline despite U.S. sanctions on both countries. The minister of defence, Gen Vladimir Padrino López, says the tankers will be “welcomed” into Venezuela’s 370-kilometre offshore economic management zone.

May 25

Some 400 Winnipeg-based employees of Boeing are to be laid off due to the impact of COVID-19 on the manufacturer's global supply chain. The workers were told May 22 about the plan, which is part of a company-wide response to the pandemic and affects mainly the production of parts for Boeing commercial aircraft.

May 22

On Sunday, 24 May 2020, a homecoming ceremony for Captain Jennifer Casey will take place. A motorcade procession will travel from the Halifax Stanfield International Airport, through the city of Halifax, to the Atlantic Funeral Home. Spectators are requested to wear red and white.

May 22

Zhang Yesui, a spokesman for the National People’s Congress Foreign Affairs Committee, says China will firmly defend its interests “if the U.S. insists on a Cold War thinking, and carries out strategies to contain China.” Meeting with reporters in Beijing ahead of the upcoming parliamentary session, he said his country “never flinches when trouble comes its way.”

ISSUES & IDEAS

CWGC's picture

The Commonwealth War Graves Commission is offering to personally lay tributes at graves and memorials in Normandy on behalf of relatives and veterans who cannot travel. 

Chris's picture

The federal government has done, and is continuing to do a very credible job of providing solid information and leadership during the health crisis facing the globe. Someone should tell Andrew Scheer to stop making COVID-19 a misguided political campaign (he lost already) and get onboard with trying to help Canadians deal constructively with the many challenges. 

Chris MacLean's picture

HBO has released a documentary on the rapid spread of disinformation to the public. It shows how it is being embraced and justified by the people creating it, and how readily it becomes accepted.

FEATURED ARTICLES

2019
Issue 3