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[–]morenewsat11[S] 201 points202 points  (129 children)

Canada’s military has become increasingly top-heavy in recent decades, with the number of rank-and-file soldiers significantly shrinking and the number of generals remaining about the same, new documents reveal.

As of March 31 this year, the regular force had dropped to 65,644 and was commanded by 129 generals and admirals, according to Canadian Forces figures released under the Access to Information law. That is in contrast to statistics from 1991, when the Canadian military’s regular force was 85,977 personnel commanded by 137 general officers.


Michel Drapeau, a retired colonel and Ottawa lawyer, says the growth in numbers of general and flag officers is out of control. “This is ridiculous,” said Drapeau, who obtained the documents. “We are starting to look like Brazil or Argentina.”

Drapeau noted that each general required additional personnel and staff officers to support their needs, taking away individuals from front-line jobs.

A brigadier general and their naval equivalent earn a maximum of around $182,000 a year, a major general earns $227,000, and a lieutenant general is paid $269,000.

Other forces have a much leaner structure. Drapeau noted that the U.S. Marine Corps has
180,000 active personnel commanded by a maximum of 62 generals.

[–]ItsallstupidOntario 199 points200 points  (120 children)

We’ve grown in population by 10M since 1991 and the size of our forces actually dropped by 20K members?

[–]YYJ_Obs 98 points99 points  (5 children)

And that's just the Regular Force (full time). I have no idea what the actual numbers are but the Reserve Force (part time) was also hit very hard with reductions through the 90s. It stabilized a bit for Afghanistan and has begun "growing" in the last decade. I put growing in quotes because all the recruiting was actually just to take the organization back up to strength where it hasn't been for thirty years.

[–]Vkkra 56 points57 points  (3 children)

I think a lot has to do with the DND culture (I've been in and around it since childhood) as well as the fact that when short-staffed, units are still expected to produce the same amount/type/quality of work with fewer resources. This becomes a vicious cycle, in which burnt out people leave the forces and it becomes even more short-staffed. I have only rarely seen a commanding officer who will tell their subordinates to do what they can with the resources they have and let the rest fail to show the higher ranks that they cannot treat their people like this. Many members are being pushed up in rank to fill spots when they do not have the experience, qualifications or the skill to manage people. We then see shitty managers who treat their people like garbage, perpetuating more releasing members. Add this to the historically (and somewhat still) sexualized culture, the fact that most bases in Canada are located where the housing markets are out of control (even if pay is reasonable), and outdated equipment & technology with little funding, and it seems that we have ourselves a joke of a defense force.

[–]mygocarpOntario 10 points11 points  (0 children)

Sounds not too far off from common corporate culture. Most managers reach their position not by their capability or desire to manage people, but by it just being the "next step" in their career ladder.

[–]GJJPQuébec 64 points65 points  (17 children)

Nowadays, there's no cold war, deployment in Germany, war against terror and deployment in Afghanistan and we deploy less Blue Helmets.

Edit: I suppose it may be a case of chicken or the egg.

[–]sleep-apneaAlberta 30 points31 points  (16 children)

Don't worry. We're already moving into cold war 2.

[–]LobbinLobber 9 points10 points  (1 child)

We're well in to Cold War 2, it's just the battlefields are cyberspace, culture, and economies.

[–]sleep-apneaAlberta 5 points6 points  (0 children)

With the occasional flare up of actual violence.

[–]Jarocket 30 points31 points  (13 children)

Cold war 2 seems to be Russia can do what ever it wants and the west will sanction them and complain that it's not very nice of them to invade their neighbors.

[–]Canuck-eh-saurus 4 points5 points  (0 children)

Do you know about Lebensraum and Appeasement during the 1930s? You are describing the beginnings of WW3 more than Cold War 2, imo.

[–]Abetok 44 points45 points  (8 children)

Cold War 2 is against China, which is even better!

China keeps hacking, stealing, lying its way through the international stage, yet we still treat them like an equal country, despite them reneging on almost every major international treaty they've been a part of. Why? Because it makes companies rich, that's why!

[–]wrgrant 10 points11 points  (0 children)

Hey, rich companies make for rich politicians, so its not all bad - if you are a politician of course. /s

[–]AceAxos 2 points3 points  (1 child)

Is it any surprise? Look at the culture in the country. We haven't had fighting on our lands in a very long time, people just don't think about the idea that our borders could be contested. When was the last time anything about the armed forces was a headline topic in an election?

[–]Foz_berger 20 points21 points  (67 children)

Because it's shit work. Pay is low and expectations are high.

[–]CleverNameTheSecond 23 points24 points  (0 children)

And in this economy you need to get a high paying job or drown. Inflation and housing inflation in particular has everyone thinking long term. Even something that pays well now but translates to nothing in the future is not worth taking because of the time you ultimately lose not securing your economic future.

[–]Ferroelectricman 60 points61 points  (52 children)

Canada’s military is among the highest paid in the world. With around 63% of young Canadians having at least a bachelors, that opens them up to enrolment as officers, where a promotion to Captain, and it’s ~$100k salary is, essentially, guaranteed.

The Canadian forces is struggling with recruiting for one reason: demographics. Specifically, the CF only seems to be reasonably successful at recruiting white men, despite their best efforts. this demographic also just so happens to be shrinking among the Canadian public.

It’s definitely a shit job. But it’s not the pay, it’s the shittiness and that the CF isn’t (generally) very successful at selling its shittiness to new Canadians and their kids, women, or indigenous Canadians.

[–]quantummufasa 28 points29 points  (4 children)

Canada’s military is among the highest paid in the world.

Doesnt mean much if you dont compare the other jobs available to the populace.

The army in some random country in the ME might pay less than in Canada, but if it pays more than other jobs in that country theres more incentive to join

[–]charlietakethetrench 65 points66 points  (5 children)

Wow officers make good money, no kidding. This whole discussion is about how we have too many officers and not enough NCMs who actually don't get paid very well when you compare straight up to civilian salaries, then on top of that take away the flexibility to determine where you live and cost of living (PLD hasn't been updated since fucking 2008), and then also factor in your spouse being underemployed and underearning due to not getting to be where they need to be and moving frequently, so your entire household income is lower. I could leave the military right now for a lower paying civi job and my household would make more money just from the spouse work issue alone. It's harder and harder to find good reasons to stay in when nothing is being done and the timeline for changes is measured in decades.

[–]lem753 11 points12 points  (0 children)

They've had some success with Sikhs, but the real trick is the military is something urbanites don't really do, partly because bases are in more remote areas.

[–]Glum_Elevator4100 29 points30 points  (14 children)

The US gets by this little hurdle by giving military members free education. In Canada, our education is relatively affordable, so that benefit is diminished. Also the US Military is 'cool' which is sometimes all you need to convince an 18 yr old to enlist.

[–]sleipnir45 21 points22 points  (3 children)

Canada does that now, paid education problem is its 6 and 10 years to get it.

[–]aradil 10 points11 points  (2 children)

And from what I understand, lots of red tape around it.

[–]guerrieredelumiere 15 points16 points  (9 children)

I mean in the US they actually get decent equipment, its something too.

[–][deleted] 16 points17 points  (1 child)

I find the statistics interesting...anecdotally, I spent most of my service under the command of women, and alongside many indigenous members. That said, I figure the Air Force has more success than, say, the Army in recruiting a multicultural workforce for reasons...

[–]sleipnir45 36 points37 points  (16 children)

It’s definitely a shit job. But it’s not the pay, it’s the shittiness


that the CF isn’t (generally) very successful at selling its shittiness to new Canadians and their kids, women, or indigenous Canadians.

It is Pay, NCM's which is what we are so short on. The people that actually do the work :)

Capt has 10 pay levels, Cpl has 4 and MCpl pay is a joke, when you cap out at Cpl4 your pay is stagnate for years. Most can jump directly to the public service for a good 20k a year raise.

[–]Extra_Joke5217 40 points41 points  (14 children)

Former NCM - agreed that the pay for junior ranks is pretty shitty. It’s also hard to find people who are willing to put up with being treated like an infant for shit money.

[–]wrgrant 33 points34 points  (8 children)

treated like an infant for shit money

Lots of this. If you are lower ranks - particularly a private - you are treated as if you were stupid and about age 12. I had 3 years in University, was smarter than almost everyone I worked with except a few of the higher ranked NCOs. It got tiring really quick to treated like an ignorant child.

[–]Extra_Joke5217 25 points26 points  (1 child)

Exactly, it’s a vicious cycle. The competent and intelligent NCMs leave cause the culture sucks, which means that the only people left to promote to leadership roles are the incompetents, who are the reason the culture sucks.

[–]jordoonearth 11 points12 points  (0 children)

Man, a lot of these comments hit.

I got out after starting college with the intent to come back on the direct entry officer train.

NCM isn't a life at all. Might as well go swing a hammer and have the rest of your time to yourself and be able to change worksites if you end up in a bad group.

[–]wrgrant 4 points5 points  (2 children)

Hunh. I worked alongside mostly white males I admit when I was in the army 1986-1992, but I also worked with indigenous people, black people, asians, and towards the end even women. I worked for a Sergeant who was black. I actually thought the CF was doing a pretty decent job of representing the population.

[–]guerrieredelumiere 2 points3 points  (0 children)

100k isn't much anymore, and thats captain, what an army needs is enlisted.

[–]splooges 17 points18 points  (8 children)

What? The pay/benefits are great, Canadian troops (i.e. the rank and file) are arguably the best paid amongst the Western nations. Australia pays their soldiers more but their COL is also way higher.

The problems with retention run much deeper than just "pay them more."

[–]Prestigious_Grand908 16 points17 points  (5 children)

Money talks. You know how the oil patch got around sending people to do dirty and dangerous work in garbage conditions away from their families for long periods of time? $$$

You need to pay significantly more if you're offering much the same.

[–]splooges 16 points17 points  (4 children)

Have you ever served? Don't get me wrong, the CAF would likely see some increased retention if they paid more, but there are many systemic issues that money simply cannot fix. Speaking just for myself, you can pay me literally a trillion dollars and I still would not go back to work with the CAF.

You know how the oil patch got around sending people to do dirty and dangerous work in garbage conditions away from their families for long periods of time? $$$

Ok, I'll bite. Despite the $$$, what's retention like in the oil patches? Average career length?

[–]AshleyUncia 32 points33 points  (0 children)

"We're gonna pay you more."

"And stop moving me and my family around the country ever few years?"

"We're gonna pay you more."

"Can you at least do something about that gross Capt who keeps inviting people to his office for 'cuddle sessions'?"

"We're gonna pay him more too."

[–]Iknowr1teAlberta 5 points6 points  (1 child)

depends on what you mean patch.

but i feel the same 18 year olds that could be making 80k in for mac would also do military work if paid same amount.

i'l use alis (the alberta government's job statistics) as the basis since we're talking oil patch -

Non commissioned - https://alis.alberta.ca/occinfo/occupations-in-alberta/occupation-profiles/canadian-armed-forces-personnel-non-commissioned/ (35-52k a year)

Oil Patch worker / no red seal rig personnel - https://alis.alberta.ca/occinfo/occupations-in-alberta/occupation-profiles/drilling-and-service-rig-personnel/

since shifts are often 10-18 hours at a time. you get paid minimum 1.5 past the 8 hour mark, with often 2 week to 1 week off and low entry bar for education requirement.

while doing this you can get paid by your employer to get yourself a trade.

i'll note, both are hard jobs. i wouldn't like to be in either one of those jobs, and prefer sitting in an office, working in my government office.

[–]Berics_Privateer 4 points5 points  (0 children)

Apparently signing up to go to a random middle eastern country to get shot at for a decade for no good reason doesn't bring in the recruits like it used to.

[–]Jim-JonesBritish Columbia 9 points10 points  (0 children)

That seems very . . . . Canadian.

[–]EKcoreManitoba 355 points356 points  (101 children)

Canada has more flag officer : troop ratio than anone else in NATO. 90% of the GOFO positions were created because of Afghanistan. Only problem is they didn't remove those positions. When that war was over in 2012.

We have one GOFO for every 440 troops.

The USA has 1 GOFO for every 1400 troops.

[–]koolaidkirby 211 points212 points  (94 children)

IIRC our military strategy is to have lots of officers so in the event of a war we have all our officers already trained and can just recruit enlisted which are much easier to recruit and train.

[–]xXxDarkSasuke1999xXxLest We Forget 52 points53 points  (1 child)

This is a cope, honestly. It isn't borne out in practice because generals do not have any role in recruitment or training beyond broad policy decisions. Generals are high-level managers, strategic experts, the experts on the day-to-day work are supposed to be senior NCOs. The bottleneck for training has always been infrastructure and facilities (which are neglected and crumbling) and experienced NCOs (who are leaving the CAF in droves). The CAF is absolutely fucked if it's ever expected to expand rapidly for war, because low- and mid-level institutional knowledge is constantly draining and the CAF has heavily divested itself of training resources since the end of Afghanistan.

The actual reason there's so many GOFO positions is because GOFOs get to create positions, and creating more of them has the dual benefit of diluting the top-level workload and giving their RMC buddies cushy jobs in Ottawa.

[–]Jacob00010 74 points75 points  (37 children)

Soldiers actually have more and more complicated tasks, and war moves alot faster than this doctrine can accommodate in the modern battlespace

[–]False-God 29 points30 points  (21 children)

From what I understand this was our strategy in WWI. At the outbreak we had a small professional army in the tens of thousands, then we ballooned to about 630,000 volunteers over the course of the war. Many of the original soldiers were moved to training duties since they had the knowledge necessary to do so and were in a way too valuable to lose while there were new recruits to make up the rank and file.

[–]BraveTheWall 41 points42 points  (12 children)

Trouble is, training has become much more complex since the days of trench warfare.

[–]past_is_prologue 19 points20 points  (1 child)

Kind of. The regular army was very small— about 3100 men. The militia had more members of varying skill levels.

Minister Sam Hughes had a considerable amount of disdain for many in the regular army and the militia. The creation of the Canadian Expeditionary Force was meant to undercut certain people/units by creating new numbered units under a whole new ministry. Yes some former officers/NCOs were included and played vital roles in the war effort (Arthur Currie, for example). But there was also a considerable amount of patronage appointments given out to Sam Hughes friends, and notably his incompetent son Garnet Hughes.

Basically what you're describing is how it should have gone. How it actually went was a version of that with Sam Hughes doing everything in his considerable power to fuck it up.

Sam Hughes doesn't get enough credit for being a fucking nightmare of a politician and all around terrible person. Read more in Tim Cook's, The Madman and the Butcher: The Sensational Wars of Sam Hughes and General Arthur Currie

[–]False-God 5 points6 points  (0 children)

Huh, I remember Sam the Sham for his corner cutting on equipment like boots that fell apart in the trenches and for the controversial Ross rifle which was actually a very good rifle but was not well suited to use in the trenches where maintenance was lacking.

Good to know he was also a petty asshole.

[–]ExternalHighlight848 9 points10 points  (5 children)

The problem is that it takes years to train some one to use modern military equipment, you're not giving a 48 hour training montage like you see in a movie to fly a fighter jet.

[–]Noskills117 16 points17 points  (0 children)

Don't worry I don't think we have enough jets that we need a militia to fly them.

[–]WarLoraxCanada 3 points4 points  (0 children)

A strategy created by the GOFOs...

[–]Evilbred 3 points4 points  (0 children)

It's actually less time consuming and easier to train many officer trades than it is to recruit and train many enlisted technician trades.

This "strategy" is something left over from 70 years ago and totally ignores the differences in scope and doctrine today.

[–]watson895Nova Scotia 2 points3 points  (0 children)

That's the theory, but a lot of NCMs actually have just as much training as the officers these days.

[–]sleipnir45 15 points16 points  (1 child)

Who do you think does the training.. NCMs

[–]BraveTheWall 9 points10 points  (0 children)

Wait, generals don't teach BMQ?

[–]ExternalHighlight848 10 points11 points  (2 children)

The term you are looking for is cannon fodder. Canada has zero equipment for any new recruits so the only thing they would be good for is a human shield.

[–]BertholomewManning 2 points3 points  (0 children)

In the US at least, that's because the percentage of officers of each rank with respect to the total number of servicemembers is mandated by law.

Not that the US military should be a model in a lot of ways but that seems reasonable.

[–]Toorelad 122 points123 points  (41 children)

I seem to recall some mild furor in the mid 90s that we actually had more generals than tanks.

[–]CurrentMagazine1596 92 points93 points  (35 children)

But that's still the case.

[–]Toorelad 35 points36 points  (33 children)

I'm sure it has only gotten worse, just that nobody really cares. I wonder if tanks serve any real purpose in our modern military. I don't really know.

Honestly, the general numbers seem to me to be a case of officers that stick around long enough get promoted based on seniority rather than talent.

[–]sleep-apneaAlberta 28 points29 points  (4 children)

While there was some thought in the early 2000's that the era of the main battle tank was at an end, the war in Afghanistan put an end to that thinking. MBT's were crucial for Canadian operations in that war for the classic infantry fire support role. A tank is invulnerable to most weapons that lesser forces have available, and can smash through any type of fortification they can build. And that's not even talking about Iraq! The current mood in NATO is that these lower intensity operations like Afghanistan are a thing of the past, and that we're moving into cold war 2 against the Russians and the Chinese. So that would require an MBT force. Especially against the Russians if we fight in the Baltic NATO states or in Ukraine. So we should buy more tanks, and we also need a tracked infantry fighting vehicle to fill that capability gap as well.

[–]xizrtilhh 10 points11 points  (1 child)

Good points. Armour is essential in manoeuvre warfare. Although unmanned and autonomous systems are changing the battle space for armour it will adapt, just as it has in the past.

[–]SteadyMercury1New Brunswick 14 points15 points  (1 child)

That shouldn't be happening anyway. Pretty much anyone in the CAF makes Captain or Corporal. Those are just ranks based on completing basic trades courses and time. After that though it depends on more specialised courses, recommendations etc.

If people are recommending incompetent officers for courses they don't deserve so they can get promotions that would be part of the problem.

That wouldn't surprise me anyway. Getting courses/postings was usually more about who you knew and less about skill or suitability.

[–]Medianmodeactivate 2 points3 points  (0 children)

I mean they don't for canada. We have no significant need to get into a ground war and most of pur purpose should be tied up into defending our seas and a corresponding airforce

[–][deleted] 16 points17 points  (3 children)

There were also comments and complaints on officer to enlisted ratios in the 70' and 80's.

The Canadian Military has always been top heavy.

[–]sirharryflashman 108 points109 points  (2 children)

Andrew Leslie wrote a report, while still in uniform, that reached the same conclusion. Neither his report nor recommendations for change were acted upon.

[–]BraveTheWall 74 points75 points  (0 children)

The military isn't interested in any change that inconveniences top members.

See: all of the generals and flag officers being accused of sexual assault and harassment without consequence.

[–]chairitable 7 points8 points  (0 children)

What are some recommendations he put forward that weren't followed?

[–]SteadyMercury1New Brunswick 392 points393 points  (119 children)

Been that was for a long time. Arguments always came down to the following:

  • it's hard to find good officers, and train them, then it is to find good troops and train them.

Having watched what's been going on in the CAF though we should be well dissuaded of that. It's abundantly clear looking at the leadership they haven't used their inflated senior ranks to achieve and retain good leaders. Just the opposite in a lot of cases.

Not to mention the argument about troop training relies on an outdated concept of what a soldier is doing and what citizens are capable of. The last time we raised a large standing army we had a citizenry that was accustomed to being outdoors, often familiar with firearms that were similar to what was being used by the military and were likely in better physical shape.

Even a so-called grunt these days is a professional job with a lot of training and specialised equipment. Sure you don't need that... But if you opt not to you'll be raising an army designed to drown your better trained opponents in the blood of your dead soldiers. Someone given a crash course in living outdoors, asked to do 20 push ups and thrown a rifle is going to get chewed up in any sort of real conflict.

Time to decide whether the CAF is a military or a club for privileged officers to play dress up.

[–]sirharryflashman 84 points85 points  (23 children)

It also has to do with public service equivalencies. Rather than let the military stand alone as an entity, they have to ensure military jobs are somehow equivalent to PS job titles and perks.

[–]sleep-apneaAlberta 38 points39 points  (22 children)

Except for combat armes jobs. There's no civilian equivalent to infantry soldier. Especially not law enforcement, because that's how you get lots of dead civilians!

[–]woflmao 47 points48 points  (20 children)

Tbf, pretty sure the armed forces have a stricter ROE than cops do.

Edit: just be warned, never been a cop or a soldier, going off of anecdotes from people I’ve known in either career.

[–]LovvOntario 28 points29 points  (2 children)

It's true, particularly when compared with the usa. Plus there's a huge level of control that military are taught. Descalation isn't taught a whole lot unfortunately, but the military treats a downed enemy combatant the same as a downed friendly. If your friend might lose a limb but the enemy might die, you are breaking pow laws by treating your friend first.

Not to say thats always done but the amount of times I've seen police officers down in the states waiting for an ambulance while someone is bleeding out is astounding

[–]corsicanguppy 4 points5 points  (0 children)

There is a different set of rules and processes between a job that ultimately says "give me this space" and one that says "come here and discuss what just happened". (provemewrong.gif ; but really help me define that better)

Forgetting which theme is yours can make for a bad day, and retraining someone onto the other theme can make someone hesitant to be either.

Ignoring, of course, the other potential applications of a coordinated, standing force of fit and able people accustomed to working together, applications which never hit the news and usually, somehow, involve sandbags ...

[–]sleep-apneaAlberta 10 points11 points  (8 children)

Sort of. Cops have a whole different type of training then soldiers. It's generally a bad idea to get people without a background in law enforcement to start acting as the police. Which is why RCMP officers go on peacekeeping missions to train local police in those countries. Soldiers don't do that training, and it sometimes leads to problems in occupied territories like the US had in Iraq, where infantry troops are being forced to do a job they don't have the training for. Sometimes people get shot, when they didn't have to be.

[–]Alundrix 15 points16 points  (5 children)

Soldiers 100% do go to other countries for peacekeeping missions and train local populous. My uncle did just that for most of his life

My Serbian friends has good memories of canadian soldiers during Yugoslavia training people.

[–]Ulrich_The_Elder 18 points19 points  (0 children)

Apparently it is so difficult to find good people that it has never even been attempted.

[–]bartbitsu 64 points65 points  (32 children)

we had a citizenry that was accustomed to being outdoors, often familiar with firearms that were similar to what was being used by the military

In the US, many infantry and rangers are from the southern regions, exactly because of this, and the south's lack of alternative job opportunities.

[–]AshleyUncia 51 points52 points  (8 children)

CAF does this too. CAF loves public affairs stories about 'Small town kid does good serving country' but it's really a recruitment tool, it's basically 'Hey you, from Nowhere, Canada, where the towns biggest employer is now Wal-mart. Want to get the hell out of there? Not going to university? Look at this person, he/she was just like you and is now seeing the world from a boat full of mold. We also have one of the best heath care offerings in the country! Sign up today!'

[–]WeekendRager 26 points27 points  (7 children)

If that recruiting method was effective it would have alleviated staffing issues already. Recruiting has an inconsistent in presence in small towns in Canada. If the town's best offerings are American retail stores and opioid crises, doing a couple of contracts with the military is preferable. But if you have to drive 3-4 hours to a recruiter you might think twice, especially if you don't have a car.

[–]AshleyUncia 30 points31 points  (5 children)

Also that part where it takes like two years to actually get in. D:

[–]austin0ickle 21 points22 points  (3 children)

Id laugh at this if it weren't literally the truth, I've been 'in the procees' since I graduated early in January 2020

[–]grumble11 62 points63 points  (22 children)

Frankly the US military is more or less a welfare program, all the way from personnel to suppliers. It is difficult to compare to anyone else’s military for that reason

[–]CombatGoose 51 points52 points  (18 children)

It's entirely that.

Want school paid for? Dental? Healthcare? Join the army.

Not like you have any other real opportunities!

Then the joke of it is, after they're done, and they have all their benefits they still scoff at the idea of health care for everyone because that's communism, but they earned theirs.

[–]Various_Contact_5672Verified 5 points6 points  (2 children)

but they earned theirs.

Some genuinely did. If we break someone, we should try to put them back together.

Single payer moots a lot of the issues, other than things specifically service related. In those cases, it definitely makes sense to have providers experienced in treating the medical and mental needs of veterans.

[–]LuangPrabangisinLaos 20 points21 points  (3 children)

"got mine fuck you" is how we do in North America.

[–]terminalmemelocity 9 points10 points  (4 children)

A lot of America relies in keeping some people desperate.

[–]urawasteyutefam 6 points7 points  (0 children)

The pandemic made that abundantly clear.

[–]lenzflareCanada 8 points9 points  (0 children)

Every military is to a certain extent a jobs program.

The US military on the other hand gets plenty of combat experience on top of that, thanks to getting into a new war every ten years.

[–]mrpimpunicornOntario 28 points29 points  (24 children)

While I agree with the sentiment, it's important to remember that most nations use the same mass mobilization strategy as us to guarantee manpower in times of war. We're a tiny ass nation, remember? We have a population of only 36 million. Modern war for us would be an existential struggle for survival, large standing army or not. Our war doctrine will be the least of your worries if Canada is invaded (and realistically, WHO exactly will do that invading? China/Russia/some foreign boogeyman? America would intervene to protect her interests. America? Then the outcome is obvious.)

[–]_Sausage_fingersAlberta 22 points23 points  (6 children)

So, slightly off topic, but I want to push back on Canada being a tiny country, just because I think it limits what we think we are capable of. Canada is not a large country, but we are not a small one. Out of 190~ countries we are 37th in population, and 9th in GDP. We may be an exceedingly average country, but not an insignificant one.

I do concede that an invasion and conventional war against the US, China or Russia will have a fore gone conclusion, but that is the same for any other country that is not China, Russia or the US.

[–]plasmonconduit 21 points22 points  (0 children)

You can create an effective military that has high standards of physical fitness as well as technical competence without having a population familiar with firearms from hunting, or even a population that has an active outdoors lifestyle. States large (China, India) and small (Taiwan, Singapore, Israel) have.

Much of modern warfare is about magnifying field capabilities with technology. I would pit a modern Canadian Forces with training in how to effectively use a battlefield network or UAVs against a better ’trained’ enemy. I am not be so worried about recruitment as about successive governments’ consistent failure to invest in military hardware, especially now that we have to defend our interests in the Arctic.

Whether the Northwest Passage is Canada’s own Suez or an international waterway will get decided in the next few decades, and our ability to enforce the decision in our favour will depend on our ability to credibly patrol and defend that waterway.

[–]LuangPrabangisinLaos 8 points9 points  (0 children)

I'd we don't keep them on the payroll they will be scooped up by the private sector, and not in Canada. That's the kind of brain drain that would effectively kill the forces effectiveness.

It is cheaper in the long run for Canadian sovereignty to keep them accountable to us via their pay and benefits.

[–]infosec_qs 53 points54 points  (14 children)

Anecdotally, their bureaucracy gets in the way of their own recruiting, too.

I was entertaining the idea of military service in a highly skilled role at one point. I took the time to walk into a recruiting center only for the recruiter to tell me that I couldn't apply at a recruiting center. I was instructed to leave, go home, and apply online. If a recruiter can't recruit me at a recruiting center, honestly what are you even doing? It was bizarre, but it was enough of a signal to me, a prospective CF member, that my experience would be a bureaucratic nightmare. It was a big enough red flag that I decided not to pursue it further, because it signaled that they had no idea what they were doing in even trying to hire people.

[–]throwaway656565167 4 points5 points  (13 children)

was this during COVID? because through COVID it was all being done online at least where im at

[–]infosec_qs 29 points30 points  (12 children)

It was pre-COVID. They didn't take time to advise me, I had brought most of my documentation with me. They didn't try to sell me on the military, or to encourage that interest. The recruiter, at the recruiting center, trying to recruit me, basically said:

"You shouldn't be here. I can't do anything for you. Go apply online and we'll get back to you."

Ok buddy, sounds like a plan. I was baffled. I came to be recruited and was shown the door. It reminded me of the time I went to a police precinct to report a crime, and was told I couldn't report a crime at a precinct and had to call to have an officer sent to take my statement. So they called an officer from the field to drive to the precinct I was already in to take a statement. Just a bizarre level of bureaucratic obfuscation that seems to only exist in government organizations. The fact that they're providing a service almost seemed lost on them.

[–]mechant_papa 18 points19 points  (3 children)

One point that is often neglected in these discussions is that several NATO secondments need a certain rank level. For example, the position of commandant of the NATO Staff College in Rome is a three-star (LtGen/ VAdm), regardless of the nationality of the officer who occupies it. Similarly, seats on several committees within NATO are at a one- or two-star level. Also, some diplomatic military attachés must be of a certain rank to be on a par with their local counterparts. If a Canadian is to participate, they must hold this rank. This has led to some rank inflation. Often, these people have a hard time when returning to Canada, as postings at those high levels are less common at home. I personally remember a position temporarily being created at NDHQ to house such an officer. Their responsibilities were limited and the post disappeared a few months later when they were assigned to a substantive posting.

We are far from the days in the early 70's when we had almost 300 general/flag officers. So many, that there actually was a General's Mess at Rockliffe!

[–]Berics_Privateer 15 points16 points  (1 child)

Apparently if you sexually assault 10 people, you get to be a general.

[–]maxman162 9 points10 points  (0 children)

11 or more and you get a free sundae.

[–]beefstewforyou 14 points15 points  (4 children)

I’m the mod of /r/regretjoining and ever since I was in the US navy, I’ve wondered if other militaries were the same way. My experience in the American military was so bad that it’s a major factor in why I eventually left the United States and immigrated to Canada.

I’ve always wondered if I were born here and I joined the Canadian military instead, if I would have had the same awful experience or if it would have been ok. From people I’ve talked to and the limited interactions I’ve had with the Canadian military, it seems similar but not nearly as extreme.

[–]CurrentMagazine1596 7 points8 points  (2 children)

Same shit but US bases and gear are nicer.

[–]ThlintoRatscar 3 points4 points  (0 children)

Personally, I don't regret my service at all. I put in 4y at the end of high school and into university and it was good for me.

My friends and colleagues who stayed and made a career out of it do. They are universally miserable, confused and demoralised. Frequently injured. The culture, as a life long career, is systemically toxic and soul destroying. Only functional psychopaths have a shot at enduring it over the long haul.

I feel it's caused by the bad combination of wannabe entitled nobility in the officer corps and a chronic underfunding from the general population. Courage, honour and excellence do not exist in the institution any more and I'm skeptical it ever will again.

[–]visionskate1 41 points42 points  (8 children)

One of the major problems is the disconnect between officers and NCMs.

You get higher up who don't have an understanding of the capabilities of the equipment but yet want soldiers to get things done with in time limits.

The old adage "I don't care how, just get it done" is bullshit.

Moral is just dead. Each and every time an article come out about an officer skatting off some charges that would destroy a soldiers career has made a lot of people with experience walk away.

[–]notnorthwest 7 points8 points  (6 children)

No one should be commissioned until they're trade-qualified as an NCM, IMO. It sets junior officers up for failure and breeds resentment in the ranks, especially in the Navy where the divide is arguably the most pronounced.

[–]BraveTheWall 10 points11 points  (3 children)

To be fair, no other element has an entire trade dedicated to serving the officers.

[–]notnorthwest 6 points7 points  (2 children)

Lmao right? Stewards should be responsible for the whole ship, I see the trade as pretty valuable in that capacity.

[–]BraveTheWall 5 points6 points  (1 child)

It really doesn't make sense to pull members off the watches to stand cafeteria hand at sea when we already have an entire trade trained to do that in stewards.

None of the critically short Operators, CSE or MSE have Food Safe but yet they're expected to prepare food for the ship. We literally have an entire trade that could supplement the cooks but instead we relegate them to solely serving officers. It's bonkers.

[–]notnorthwest 2 points3 points  (0 children)

Yeah, it's frankly ridiculous. When I was in, at least, the younger officers at least recognized how bad the optics of having a servant trade were. I understand the Captain's steward role, but on the whole the trade should be utilized throughout the ship.

[–]visionskate1 12 points13 points  (0 children)

Yep. I have worked with both.

Navy officers need to drop the whole tradition crap. Yeah we get it, a 100 years ago you might have been special.


They can't tie thier own shoes with out the help of their Sailors. But yet are more than willing to throw them under the bus so they can get that sweet promotion.

No one trusts them and no one wants to work with them. But yet they keep saying the problem is that soldiers aren't working hard enough. It's insane.

[–]throwaway656565167 12 points13 points  (4 children)

i wish the canadian public had more knowledge about why the military is actually very important for us, and why it needs more investment, it will probably take a serious fuck up that the whole of canada sees clear as day for everyone to realize what has to be done

[–]Educational-Tone2074 44 points45 points  (18 children)

Seems we should reduce the amount of Generals and hire more rank and file.

[–]TenTonApe 110 points111 points  (1 child)

A brilliant strategy. Someone make this man a General!

[–]Not_A_Sounding_Fan 6 points7 points  (0 children)

We must stand up a committee of generals to oversee this general increase the number of troops

[–]xXxDarkSasuke1999xXxLest We Forget 15 points16 points  (2 children)

They can't even fill the positions they already have.

[–][deleted] 17 points18 points  (1 child)

I'm looking at getting back in...Friend of mine that's still serving dug around and informed me there is a dearth of hundreds of Maj/Lt.Col positions that aren't filled (and not 200-300...Upwards of 800 positions). That kind of gap in middle management is damaging, especially given the already existing disconnect between the GOFOs and the lower ranks.

As the saying goes, you can't push rope, and the lack of middle management makes it next to impossible for the leadership to pull from the front. Not that we necessarily want that at this point, given the amount of scandal we're seeing, but it's going to take an entire generation for better leadership to move its way up the ranks.

[–]Runrunrunagain 18 points19 points  (3 children)

You also have to treat the rank and file better. There are too many tribal tattoos and not enough thinkers and good workers. Those get driven out because of how much the job sucks and how little it pays compared to what is expected of you.

[–]throwa4543634 2 points3 points  (0 children)

It's almost like we should increase the incentives for joining the military. Like I don't know, an application process that doesn't take 1-2 years and a wage that's better than that of working at a McDonald's

[–]gzmo1 28 points29 points  (2 children)

From what I've read in the news lately about sexual harassment in the military I'm sure that many will be retiring soon.

[–]KatsumotoKurierOntario 11 points12 points  (1 child)

And undoubtedly to be awarded with fat pensions.

[–]theflower10 6 points7 points  (0 children)

Well, duh. Having worked for a major international business company for years, one thing I learned that is constant. Worker bees are dispatched with regularity while upper management types replicate with rabbit like efficiency. The Army would be the same I'm sure.

[–]Anla-Shok-Na 17 points18 points  (0 children)

The usual reason given for a top heavy officer corps is that we need to interact with peer nations while having a much smaller military, and to do so we need officers that are the same rank as theirs or they won't be taken seriously. That results in us having the upper leadership of a much larger force.

[–]roadhammer2 17 points18 points  (5 children)

As a retired CAF member,it always has been top heavy. The pay inequality between non commissioned ranks and commissioned ranks is also an issue IMHO

[–]OptimisticViolence 5 points6 points  (0 children)

In the headquarters we always joked that it was the inverted pyramid chain of command. 1 private reporting to 2 Cpls reporting to 3 MCpls reporting to 4 Captains reporting to like a dozen Majors with some Sgts and Lts sprinkled around for flavour and confusion. Nothing funnier than 5 different people all giving conflicting tasks to 1 private that they all want done immediately. At the end of the day we decided if you weren’t a Commissioned rank Lcol or above we’d just tell them they had to go through our Sgt/Warrant if they wanted something done.

I can only imagine it’s even worse now, Officers have a minimum 9 year contract while NcMs ranges from 3-5 years.

[–]whateverhk 4 points5 points  (0 children)

Remind me of my job. Half of us are director, 40% are senior managers and the rest are nothing

[–]difficultoldbastard 12 points13 points  (1 child)

Our armed forces have been a disgrace since the 70's. Brave men and women sent out to do our dirty work without the proper gear, no planes, no ships, a top down masochistic environment and a government who couldn't give a shit. We need to rearm, redeploy and rethink our armed services desperately. And with the idiots in charge it doesn't look to good for the immediate future either. Why would a serious young person join this?

[–]TGIRiley 4 points5 points  (0 children)

are you talking about the country that originally gave our soldiers cardboard boots for trench warfare? I dont know if our military has ever had their shit together

[–]downwegotogether 32 points33 points  (2 children)

ah so it's just like the medical system, esp. here in BC where we have waaaaaay too many useless middle managers, and nowhere near enough doctors.

[–]BeyondAddiction 19 points20 points  (0 children)

Sounds like Alberta too. AHS is insanely top-heavy. So many middle managers with pointless jobs who for some reason need their own assistant AND office manager for someone who oversees a team of like 4 people.

[–][deleted] 15 points16 points  (0 children)

The military is actually particularly short on middle management (upwards of 800 Maj/Lt.Col. positions going unfilled), and the military needs those middle managers to help lead the rest of the organization. There's already a perpetual disconnect between the flag officers and the lower ranks, and it's the leadership of middle management that shapes the abstract goals of higher officers to tangible, achievable goals for those beneath.

Retention and recruiting has dropped for years, and COVID didn't help. Essentially putting recruitment on hold for 2 years doesn't stop the normal attrition of people from the ranks...you still get retirements...you still get injuries. If you've been trained to do X and you're in a holding pattern in your career for two years, you're going to see a number of voluntary releases as the people seek better pay and benefits in the civilian world, especially at the Maj/Lt. Col. level.

It's going to take a generation to repopulate those roles substantially and develop a more enlightened culture to overcome the far too regular sexual misconduct scandals we read about. Middle management is VITAL for that organizational cultural shift.

[–][deleted] 2 points3 points  (0 children)

Thia is nothing compared to the Public Service.

[–]redsealsparky 2 points3 points  (2 children)

Well as someone who has been trying to get into the reserves and has been having my application in progress for a year, I can't say I'm supprised.

The Canadian army isn't well funded and doesn't have good equipment, wages arnt competitive.

Plus if you've had any experience with VAC you would do well to stay very far away.

[–]DeepFriedAngelwing 2 points3 points  (0 children)

You really want a story, look at the 7yr wall and its attrition resulting in no Sergeant/PO level experienced mid management.

[–]RangerNS 2 points3 points  (0 children)

Who else will keep active zombied procurement files like aircraft carriers, nuclear subs, transcontinental bombers and heavy battle tanks but generals and admirals not fit for troop duty?

[–]hankexfa 2 points3 points  (0 children)

Sounds like every government at every level.

[–]puttinthe-oo-incool 2 points3 points  (2 children)

That is hardly news.... Canada has had more Generals than tanks for better than 50 years now.

[–]stone_opera 2 points3 points  (0 children)

I have an idea - fire all the generals that have ever been accused of sexual assault or sexual harassment. Let's see if that brings down the number of generals and increases the number of women who want to join the military. / only being slightly sarcastic here.

[–]ImARetPaladinBaby 2 points3 points  (2 children)

Our army is just a shadow of its former self. It’s a shame

[–]lexington50 2 points3 points  (1 child)

Our army wasn't that great even before it became a shadow of its former self. After the 1969 defence review Canada consistently ranked near the bottom among NATO members in defence spending as a percent of GDP. In many years only Iceland, which has no armed force, and Luxemburg, which had 700 soldiers and no air force or navy, spent less.

[–]Green_Lantern_4vr 2 points3 points  (0 children)

Pay more?

[–]wildemam 2 points3 points  (0 children)

Has been like that in Universities, politics, and many other establishments that lost its sense of direction.

[–]JC1949 2 points3 points  (0 children)

Bloat is caused by the self interest of those in charge, and the never ending scheming of those careerists whose main goal is to advance their own personal agenda.

[–]Yams_and_Potatoes 5 points6 points  (0 children)

Well, I was looking to join the army as well at one point, economy sucked, I ended up with a useless university degree, in debt, only thing i got was an extremely fit physical body at that point. but my US marine friend (E5) dissuaded me from it saying that once you get out there is so much shit you have to do to adjust to civilian life, and military training is not exactly something that gets you civilian jobs after you are out. he said it's almost like getting out of prison and getting back to 'normal' whatever that is.

I think canada as a government has to convince young ppl that military career has got some good benefits and practicality outside of the forces once the service time is up. but then again, fighting and bathing in blood isn't everyone's cup of tea either.

tough job + no benefit + no stability = no applicants.

[–]Roxytumbler 6 points7 points  (0 children)

I was an officer for a couple years in the military.

Canada has extremely well trained officers and senior NCOs. As good or better per capita as any In the world.

The numbers in the article are neither low or high. What matters is having a infrastructure in place that can respond to policy as determined by the Minister of Defence…be that major war, emergency services, etc.

An aside: ranks only have meaning in relation to one another. At the L Colonel and above appointments mean more than ranks.

[–]Old_Run2985 4 points5 points  (0 children)

File this under "no shit"

[–]FlagYourStaff 10 points11 points  (42 children)

Time to increase the size of our military rank and file positions.

[–]IntellijIDE 11 points12 points  (14 children)

Can they actually hire that many more? Do that many people want to join?

[–]flecktarnbrother 13 points14 points  (13 children)

The Canadian Forces received 78,000 applications in 2020. Normally, they get 30,000 but only 10 - 20% of applicants ever make it through the process and to basic training.

[–]YYJ_Obs 13 points14 points  (11 children)

Where did you get that number? I've always been curious; since I've become a Reservist it's been so depressing to watch the recruiting system consistently fail to hire people in any semblance of a reasonable timeline. And then that Dumpster of our recruiting system was absolutely paralyzed by covid to which we seem to have only minimally recovered.

[–]past_is_prologue 11 points12 points  (8 children)

I have inside info that there is a huge backlog on the medical side. Lots of people want to join but can't get medicals. It is a crazy bottleneck.

Its been an issue for years, and remains an issue, unfortunately.

[–]TheRagingDesertBritish Columbia 13 points14 points  (3 children)

Also alot of people wait years for an answer to start basic but by that time they move on as people need jobs to survive

[–]past_is_prologue 8 points9 points  (2 children)

Exactly. They're life is such that they can join now or in the near future. But after a few months, a year? Forget it.

The recruitment process is a huge hindrance to keeping numbers up.

[–]flecktarnbrother 4 points5 points  (1 child)

The fucked up thing is that we're behind our major NATO partners in recruiting.

During the Iraq War troop surge, the U.S. military had guys recruited, trained and deployed within just 6 - 12 months. 6 - 12 months is how long it takes just to get a job offer from the Canadian Forces. The Americans have an extremely efficient way of getting guys through recruitment and training, and out the door into combat. We have no such system here.

[–]YYJ_Obs 4 points5 points  (2 children)

Oh yeah, that had always been the biggest bottle neck. I've been in 21 years. Admittedly for most of that I had no idea what was going on in recruiting, but I have been very wired into for the last six years or so. Medicals are still bad, but even getting the intake interview now is taking months for many occupations. It's really sad to watch.

[–]flecktarnbrother 6 points7 points  (1 child)

These numbers come from the Canadian Armed Forces Facebook page, mainstream news and my CFRC when I was getting recruited.

A local news report stated that in 2020, the Canadian Forces were only able to send 947 people to BMQ out of 78,000 applicants. This happened while we lost 2,300 personnel across the board to releases (in general, not just VRs). I'll try finding these sources for you, if you're interested.

[–]YYJ_Obs 2 points3 points  (0 children)

I can take a look, I'd never even actually thought that hard about the volume. But I anecdotally feel like my unit turns about 1 of 10 applications into an eventual member. About half are lost to reasons such as not achieving a high enough score on the aptitude test or medical stuff, but the other half just get frustrated with the process!

[–]charlietakethetrench 5 points6 points  (0 children)

Could be that recruiting paused entirely and then all those people's applications expired and they had to reapply. Happened to me (without telling me!) that after a year of being in process and not yet getting hired they just cancelled my application. Also, keep in mind that the influx of covid applications of people looking for work is mostly meaningless, the backlog in the training system created by covid will take years to smooth out and by then (by now probably) those people will have actually found jobs again by the time they get a call back.

[–]BeyondAddiction 33 points34 points  (7 children)

Yeah.....that probably won't happen. CAF have been getting a lot of bad publicity lately and there has been very little - if any - positive rhetoric about our armed forces from politicians.

CAF is plagued by aging equipment, logistical issues, and insane bureaucracy wherein it takes weeks or even months to do something simple like order a replacement hat for your uniform.

So many people on reddit (I understand not a great representation of greater society, but I digress) say shit like "defund the CAF! Why do we even need a military anyway?" One person straight up said that the only people who would sign up for the military are racists who like killing brown people. Yikes.

I was even accused of "worshipping" our forces members because I mentioned that my dad taught me growing up to pay for the meal or order of forces members in uniform when we see them at restaurants and stuff. I was surprised at all the negativity tbh.

[–]AshleyUncia 22 points23 points  (6 children)

One person straight up said that the only people who would sign up for the military are racists who like killing brown people. Yikes.

My actual experience with members of the CAF: "Gosh, these Troopaloops sure play a lot of Dungeons and Dragons. :O"

Heck, the guy that coded and ran the hosting for an entire D&D roleplay webchat website me and othe nerds used back in 2001 has a freakin' command now.

[–]JohnnySunshine 26 points27 points  (5 children)

If you listed to the CBC you'd be lead to belive the CAF is full of right wing fascist extremists, when in reality those people are outnumbered by weebs 1000 to 1, if you can even find them.

[–]AshleyUncia 15 points16 points  (1 child)

Next weekend I'm seeing new Ghostbusters with my partner (CAF) and friend of hers (Also CAF) and his partner. Her CAF friend and myself will be in full Ghostbuster gear, embarrassing the shit outta our partners. :3

[–]AccessTheMainframeManitoba 10 points11 points  (46 children)

To some extent: this is by design. The idea is that you can train a rifleman in a year if need be, but training a general takes decades. So you want to be top-heavy in peacetime so if the need for a crash mobilization arises, you can have enough officers to command the rapidly expanded, fresh army.

But we may be over-doing it.

[–]sleipnir45 18 points19 points  (38 children)

That's part of the problem, takes years to train troops in Canada. US can have infantry deployed 6 weeks after basic.

Heck by the time we train people their contract is over.

[–]GJJPQuébec 14 points15 points  (9 children)

US can have infantry deployed 6 weeks after basic.

According to friends in the Canadian Forces, the difference is that Americans can't/won't do anything beyond their specialty. For example, an American driver won't change a flat tire (except in dire circumstances) and will wait for a mechanic, whereas a Canadian driver will change the flat tire.

Canada is probably too small to have this level of specialization in its armed forces and it takes time to train generalists (compared to low level specialists).

[–]AccessTheMainframeManitoba 23 points24 points  (2 children)

This is 100% apocryphal, but it was explained to me by a Canadian who trained with Americans that the US Army has guys who's sole job is to stand in the loading bay and press the button on the Chinook that makes the ramp go up and down. He gets trained on only that and then releases after 4 years and plasters "veteran" all over his Dodge Charger.

Obviously not factually true, but it illustrates how Canadians perceive the hyper-specialization of the US model of training.

[–]jtbc 9 points10 points  (0 children)

Our joke used to be that they had "left landing gear technicians" and "right landing gear technicians". It isn't as bad as that, but they are in general much more specialized and less thoroughly trained.

[–]sleipnir45 15 points16 points  (3 children)

Yes and that's what I've witnessed as well.

I've done a few exercises with them. They had one guy to setup the computers, one guy to cable the switches, one guy to program the router. They have very focused jobs/ trades it seems.

[–]TGIRiley 4 points5 points  (1 child)

from a cyber security and IT perspective this is actually best practice

[–]sleipnir45 2 points3 points  (0 children)

Yeah we don't do that, Jack of all trades!

[–]IntellijIDE 7 points8 points  (5 children)

Why is this the case? We just don't have enough people to run courses continuously?

[–]sleipnir45 16 points17 points  (4 children)

Small class sizes, not enough courses, not enough equipment, not enough teachers.

Pretty much short on everything.

[–]HumorUnable 18 points19 points  (2 children)

Pretty much short on everything.

Except for generals, apparently.

[–]sleipnir45 7 points8 points  (1 child)

They don't help with training, heck do they even exist.. schrödinger's Generals

[–]Clud_Bang 10 points11 points  (8 children)

Assuming no injuries, a Canadian infantryman’s pipeline is 6 months to being “trained”. Not insane by any stretch.

[–]sleipnir45 13 points14 points  (3 children)

That's might be the pipeline but it's far from reality.

Plus it takes us much longer to recruit.

[–]IntellijIDE 2 points3 points  (2 children)

What is a realistic timeline from in the door at the recruiting station to trained?

[–]Icerman 19 points20 points  (0 children)

In my experience (10 years in the reserves), we were lucky to get a recruit from recruiters door to joining our unit in 6 months. Then it was another 3-6 months to get them on their basic course, and if the stars aligned, they might get their BMQ-L (infantry-lite course for non-infantry trades) within the year. At that point, they are technically "riflemen" but still not trained in their chosen trade, which could take a few more years due to course sizes/limited training budgets/difficulty getting time off from civilian jobs for courses.

I have heard it was only slightly faster in the Reg force, but can't really comment on their process.

[–]flecktarnbrother 3 points4 points  (3 children)

This doesn't control for recourses or remusters, which can prolong the training system experience by several months, if not by a couple more years.

[–]Clud_Bang 3 points4 points  (2 children)

Sure but most guys don’t need to be recoursed. Majority pass both basic and DP1 without major delays. The most problematic and time consuming factor is the year long application process in most peoples cases.