In part 2, I will elaborate on the importance of sharing experiences with our allies, even more with the United States Military. I will only scratch the subject regarding the United States Military, as I intend to do a full article about it. Because of the current world situation and the importance of NATO, in my opinion, the allied country has to be able to operate to a certain standard alongside each other and in different weather conditions or parts of the world. Although this article is focusing on Winter Warfare, I will give examples drawn from my experience which is based on all year-round conditions.

Afghanistan is a great example of NATO’s coordination and cooperation. Countries like the United States of America openly shared their lessons learned from Iraq and Afghanistan to the less experienced allies. These lessons saved numerous lives and probably contributed to the success of combat operations.

Before we get in depth, I want to give you a quick update on RAFALE BLANCHE 2014. The exercise concluded February 5th, and the After Action Reports (AAR) from the brigade commander, Colonel Dany Fortin, were reported by 45e Nord, a French Canadian website mainly focusing on Canadian military related news.

Nicolas Laffont, 45eNord Editor-in-Chief and a friend of mine, interviewed Colonel Fortin about RAFALE BLANCHE, and here’s a summary of the interview. Please take in consideration that the quote is translated from french and might slightly differ from the original text.
”We have to relearn the basics, and one time is not enough, acknowledges Colonel Fortin. I met some soldiers who did Rafale Blanche 2012, and to do this exercise today, gave us the opportunity to work on our fundamental competencies with a rhythm that allowed us to stay focused to do them well.”

Canadian Paratroopers, a Critical Asset for Winter Warfare

With the Arctic having 0.03 inhabitants per square kilometer, we can assume there are vast open areas in Northern Canada. Paratroopers are trained to jump into those areas to cover or seize enemy positions quickly and efficiently.

Paratroopers are a valuable asset in Winter Warfare, as they are highly mobile and can literally land on the enemy positions. Along with the paratroopers, I include all the aerial delivery assets. It is, in my opinion, safer to drop goods than to drive for hours in an open area, fully exposed. This is in an Arctic situation of course.

Sharing Our Experience with the United States Military

While NORAD is focusing mainly on the aerospace issues of both Canada and the United States, both their militaries are working closely on the ground. On virtually every major exercise Canada does, there are American soldiers who are learning and sharing their experience with their soldiers. That truly shows the close relationship both country’s militaries share.

In 2011, a platoon from the Minnesota National Guard was up in Chisasibi, Quebec with 2nd BN Royal 22nd Regiment (2R22R) to experience winter warfare and learn the training, tactics and procedures (TTPs) of the infantryman of the 2R22R.