Canada’s Army Faces Shrinking Forces


The head of the Canadian Army said his forces are facing more demands at home and in Europe even as the number of troops under his command continues to decline.

Lieutenant-General. Joe Paul says the squeeze is forcing the Army to take a closer look at some of its long-established assumptions and practices to see where it could be more effective.

Commanders across the entire Canadian Armed Forces have sounded the alarm about a staffing crisis that has left thousands of positions vacant.

Paul said the Army dropped 1,200 troops last year — and possibly another 800 this year due to recruitment and retention challenges.

At the same time, the military is addressing more calls for assistance in responding to natural disasters at home, while preparing to expand Canada’s presence in Latvia.

There are already hundreds of Canadian troops working with a NATO combat group there, and Paul said the Army will respond as the military alliance moves toward force development next year.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published on December 28, 2022.

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