New Brunswick Tribune

Wednesday, January 26, 2022

The new head of the defense staff is keeping a close eye on Ukraine and Ethiopia

Key takeaways:

  • Eyre officially assumed his current role on Thursday, after nearly a year as the “acting” defense chief.

Canada’s new chief of defense staff says he’s keeping a watch on a few dangerous international situations that could necessitate Canadian Armed Forces participation or intervention, and he promises a slew of new programs geared at enhancing military culture in the coming weeks.

“We’re keeping a careful eye on the Russian buildup in Ukraine, and we’re keeping a close eye on what’s going on in Ethiopia.” What’s gone on in Lebanon is something we’re keeping a careful watch on. 

In a Sunday interview on CTV’s Question Period, he stated, “We’re keeping a close eye on what’s happening on in the South China Sea and the Asia Pacific.”

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In the last week, the federal government has expressed concerns about Russian forces assembling near the border and has urged Canadians in Ethiopia to “leave quickly” due to a “rapidly deteriorating security situation.”

“There are plenty of hotspots around the world… “It’s becoming extremely risky,” Gen. Eyre added.

After almost a year as the “acting” defense chief, Eyre officially assumed his present position on Thursday.

INITIATIVES FOR CULTURE CHANGE ARE ON THE WAY.

Following a year in which a series of sexual misconduct probes into some of the military’s highest-ranking soldiers, one of his primary duties is to oversee the needed culture change inside the Canadian Armed Forces.

The revolving door of senior commanders stepping down or standing aside has sparked criticism of both the Forces’ leadership and the federal government for failing to safeguard victims.

“I’ll be the first to acknowledge that I’ve made a few mistakes during the last nine months.” I’ve also been on a steep learning curve. 

But I’ll tell you, one of the things I’ve learned is the importance of transparency and talking about the steps we’re going to take, as well as consultation, in dispelling the impression of an old boys’ club. “It won’t happen overnight,” Eyre said.

New chief of defense staff keeping eye on Ukraine, Ethiopia No shortage  of hotspots

Eyre predicted that a series of new programs targeted at culture transformation, justice and responsibility, and survivor support would be announced in the “coming few weeks.”

Changes to leadership selection and training, “climate intervention teams,” streamlining the complaint reporting system, and introducing the Victims Bill of Rights, to name a few examples.

Eyre stated that “activity, not words,” will demonstrate his commitment to reform and that in recruiting new members, he wishes to stress “inclusion.”

“Canada’s face is changing, and talent is now concentrated in different parts of the country than it was previously. It’s a problem that our traditional recruiting pool is shrinking as our country’s population expands. 

So, if we want to be able to attract and retain the best talent from around the country, we must prioritize inclusivity, “he explained.

Source: CTV News

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