Vol. 32, No. 2
Summer / Autumn 2023
Arrows, Bears and Secrets
Abstract: Newly available information has made it possible for the first time to examine the role of intelligence in decisions on the CF-105 Arrow. These records show that Canadian intelligence assessments of the Soviet bomber threat differed from US estimates. In the late 1950s Canadian analysts stressed the imminent shift from bombers to ballistic missiles as the main danger to North America. The Diefenbaker government’s decision to cancel the Arrow program in 1959 was significantly influenced by this view of the changing strategic threat. In examining the role of intelligence, the article addresses a number of earlier myths, and provides a more complete picture of the decisions concerning this iconic Canadian aircraft.
Operational Research and Counter-Battery Fires in the Canadian Corps, 1917-18
Abstract: This article examines the operational research conducted by the counter-battery staff office (CBO) in the headquarters of the Canadian Corps during the First World War. It challenges the argument presented by most historians of operational research, who contend that the discipline originated with the 1935 Tizard Committee and came to fruition during the Second World War and expands upon the initial inquiry performed by scholars J.S. Finan and W.J. Hurley in a 1997 journal article. While the staff of the CBO never used the term “operational research” to describe their scientific studies, they were undoubtedly its practitioners through their innovating, trialling, experimentation and dissemination of knowledge–the four pillars of the discipline. These artillerymen applied science to their weapon systems and, in doing so, made them as efficient and effective as possible. And they shared best practices with other formations in the British Expeditionary Force. Through their studies, the Canadian Corps perfected the use of counter-battery fire to attrit the German Army and strike their most important systems. Several of the studies conducted by these staff officers were mirrored by investigations carried out by No. 2 Operational Research Section during the Second World War. As a result, this study offers a new interpretation of adaptation to technology, scientific approach to operations and learning within the Canadian Corps during the First World War.
A Documentary History of the Badge of the Canadian Army
Abstract: The general badge of the Canadian Army has undergone a number of changes over the years in response to changes in the status of the land forces of Canada. The most significant of these changes was the disestablishment of the Army as an independent service with unification in 1968. An impressive amount of documentation records the decisions taken with respect to the badge of Mobile Command, a design unlike its predecessor, which had been based on that of the British Army. The demise of Mobile Command saw a return to patterns based on the original design with crossed swords.
Since its launch in 1992, Canadian Military History has become one of the premier journals in its field. CMH is a peer-reviewed academic journal published bi-annually by the Laurier Centre for the Study of Canada with editorial and financial support from theCanadian War Museum. Its purpose is to foster research, teaching and public discussion of historical and contemporary military and strategic issues.