SSWG Papers


2014 Papers


Terrorism, The Internet, And the Security/Privacy Conundrum

by John Adams

John Adams, former Chief of the Communications Security Establishment Canada and Associate Deputy Minister of National Defence, investigates to what extent our nurturing of our capacity to confront the terrorist threat on the Internet should be a concern for Canadians on the privacy front. He concludes that the Communications Security Agency seeks to ensure security and privacy in tandem, increasing the former while protecting the latter.






2013 Papers


Can We Ever Have Technological Security?

by Thomas Keenan

Thomas Keenan, Adjunct Professor of Computer Science and Research Fellow at the Centre for Military and Strategic Studies at the University of Calgary makes several recommendations on how the government can improve technological security, but concludes that absolute technological security is unattainable as long as humans are part of the system.  


Shutting the Backdoor: The Perils of National Security and Digital Surveillance Programs

by Ron Deibert

In a new report for the Strategic Studies Working Group, Ron Deibert, professor of political science, and Director of the Canada Centre for Global Security Studies and the Citizen Lab at the Munk School of Global Affairs, argues that as governments have sought to monitor digital communications for security purposes, the ''Backdoor'' paradigm has become the most predominant approach.  He concludes that in the world of ''Big Data'' new methods of connecting the dots must be explored other than those that drill holes into our communications infrastructure.


The Future of Drones in Canada: Perspectives from a Former RCAF Fighter Pilot

by DF Holman

Fraser Holman, a retired RCAF pilot with 35 years experience, questions the likelihood of the implementation of Unarmed Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) in the Canadian military. he analyses their strengths and shortcomings including communications vulnerabilities, degrees of automation and autonomy, rotary versus fixed wing applications, legal and airspace management constraints, and the potential roles in which UAVs might offer an immediate advantage.


The Future of Foreign Military Training
by Mike Jeffery

The Future of Foreign Military Training by Mike Jeffery In a new report for the Strategic Studies Working Group LGen (Ret'd) Mike Jeffery examines the nature of foreign military training. He concludes that the Canadian Forces have indeed excelled at providing foreign military training, but the effectiveness of such assistance has been limited due a lack of strategic focus and consequent short term provision of training.


The National Shipbuilding Procurement Strategy: An Update
by Eric Lerhe
A new paper from the Strategic Studies Working Group, a partnership between CDFAI and the Canadian International Council by Commodore (Ret'd) Eric Lerhe investigates the claim that the $35 billion National Shipbuilding Procurement Strategy is in trouble as a result of contractual, financial, and design difficulties.






2012 Papers


Canada and NATO: A Military Assessment

by Elinor Sloan

 Elinor Sloan examine NATO's ability to conduct out of area crisis management operations in a new paper for the Strategic Studies Working Group. The paper focuses specifically on Canada in Kandahar from 2006-2011 and concludes that strong US leadership is required for NATO operations and that Canada should say "yes" to operations preponderantly led by the United States. Finally, Canada must ensure from the outset that any future NATO non-Article V operation it participates in, enjoys core US support and direction. Canada has a role to play as a dependable and capable ally, but we must decide how to respond to this opportunity.


Canada and the Five Eyes Intelligence Community

by James Cox

University of Ottawa, and Carleton University foreign policy professor, James Cox states that the arrest of Canadian Sub-Lieutenant Jeffery Delisle in January 2012 for supplying Top Secret intelligence to Russia may have been a brief set-back for Canada's credibility in the Five Eyes, but while Canada must work to restore the trust and confidence of its Five Eyes partners, there are far bigger issues looming that will ensure Canada will continue to be a valuable and credible intelligence source for the Five Eyes network.


Comprehensive Security Requires Comprehensive Structures- How Comprehensive Can We Get?

by Anne Fitz-Gerald and Don Macnamara

Despite the generational calls for ‘3-D’, ‘joined-up’, ‘Whole of Government’ and, more recently, ‘comprehensive’ approaches to security, it is still unclear as to what Canada’s concept of security is, how it is promoted, pursued and projected at home and abroad, and how it is managed by Ottawa-based government ministries and departments. A new paper from the Strategic Studies Working Group seeks to answer these questions.


F-35 and the Future of Canadian Security

by Richard Shimooka 
Canada's participation in the Joint Strike Fighter project has been fraught with much controversy and a lack of clarity. A new research paper from Richard Shimooka  aims to assess how the F-35 meets Canadian requirements over the next few decades. It concludes that the F-35 likely represents the future of Western tactical air forces for the next 40 years, and that the F-35 is best suited to meet the future range of foreign and domestic challenges facing Canada.


Recapitalizing the Canadian Forces’ Major Fleets: Assessing Lingering Controversies and Challenges

by Philippe Lagassé

Canada's Conservative government is commited to recapitalizing the Canadian military's major fleets - at least in principle. Unfortunately, the replacement of the military's major fleets has not gone as well as hoped. The sheer size and complexity of recapitalizing the military, as well as the burdens placed on the defence department's limited procurement staff, slowed the process from the beginning. Unless new money is invested into the CF's recapitalization efforts, the military will likely have to make do with fewer platforms, or less capable equipment.






2011 Papers


A Separate Defence Procurement Agency: Will it Actually Make a Difference?

by Dr. Craig Stone

In this new paper from the Strategic Studies Working Group, Craig Stone, Director of Academics at the Canadian Forces College, argues that creating a separate government department is not the answer to problems with defence procurement as it will not fix the underlying problems that all developed nations experience with large complex military procurement projects: cost overruns; delayed deliveries; and equipment not meeting requirements.


Can R2P Survive Libya and Syria?

by Martha Hall Findlay

Martha Hall Findlay explains that the very first time the Canadian-inspired concept of "Responsibility to Protect" was invoked by the UN Security Council was to support the no-fly zone in Libya. Ironically, it will be the events that subsequently transpired in Libya, together with corresponding inaction in Syria, which may put the future of R2P at risk.


Securing the Continent: Where is NORAD Today?

by Alan Stephenson

Col (Ret’d) Alan Stephenson, a PhD candidate at Carleton University and a 35 year veteran of the Canadian Forces, assess the importance of the NORAD Command to North American defence and security in 2011 and addresses accusations of institutional irrelevance and of infringement on Canadian sovereignty. He argues that NORAD is not only still relevant, but perfectly positioned to be the ‘eyes and ears’ of both Canada and the United States in the Arctic.


The Role of the Militia in Today’s Canadian Forces

by Jack English

 Jack English, a widely published military historian, former infantry officer and senior research officer for the Minister's Monitoring Committee for recommendations of the Somalia Inquiry and the Special Commission on the Restructuring of the Reserves, examines the role of the Militia within the Canadian Forces. He contends that mobilization must be a primary function, as well as remaining an honourable vocation in and of itself.



The Canadian Navy and the Canadian Coast Guard: Cooperating Sea Services or
Co-existing Federal Fleets

by Jy Forcier  

In this paper JY Forcier, a retired Vice-Admiral with a distinguished 34 year career in the Canadian Navy, examines the role of the Coast Guard as opposed to the Navy and answers why Canada has both services. He makes three important recommendations that will strengthen the cooperation of these two services and enhance Maritime Security.  


Canada's International Role (video)

by David Bercuson, Jack Granatstein and Denis Stairs  

On June 14th, 2011, the National Capital Branch of the Canadian International Council held a panel discussion on Canada's International Role with CDFAI's David Bercuson, Jack Granatstein and Denis Stairs. They discussed the impact of the Conservative government on Canada's international policy.



Canada’s Citizen Soldiers: A Discussion Paper (full version)

Canada’s Citizen Soldiers: A Discussion Paper (abridged version)

 by David Pratt

In this Research Paper,  David Pratt, Senior Vice-President of Public Affairs for GCI and a Senior Research Fellow with the Canadian Defence & Foreign Affairs Institute, examines the current state of the Reserves. Pratt stipulates that the historic role of the Reserves, for Mobilization, has no relevance in the current strategic environment. Instead, their current roles of augmentation and providing a footprint in the community, should be the focus. Additionally, Reserves may be able to play new roles, such as combating the threats associated with cyber-security.


‘Now for the Hard Part’: A User’s Guide to Renewing the Canadian-American Partnership

by Colin Robertson

In advance of Harper and Obama's meeting, Colin Robertson outlines what a successful deal between the two nations would encompass: “a security perimeter that embraces people and goods entering by land, sea or air”; “mutually enhanced competitiveness through coordination of infrastructure investments and regulatory compatibility”; and “joint stewardship of our ‘commons’, especially in the management of resources and climate change.”  







Monthly Column


December 2014
What’s the Saudi Game?

by J. L. Granatstein

New from Colin Robertson

  Now Available
The top task for Canadian politicians: Get to know the new U.S. legislators

by Colin Robertson

The Dispatch


Now Available
Winter 2014
Edition of
The Dispatch

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