Canadian Army general issues additional directions on carriage of weapons after Khalsa Day Parade

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Canadian Army general issues additional directions on carriage of weapons after Khalsa Day Parade Empty Canadian Army general issues additional directions on carriage of weapons after Khalsa Day Parade

Post by Apollo on Tue 30 Apr 2019, 8:16 pm

DAVID PUGLIESE, OTTAWA CITIZEN April 30, 2019

Canadian Army general issues additional directions on carriage of weapons after Khalsa Day Parade 4-screen-shot-2019-04-30-at-2.42.15-pm

The Commander 4 Canadian Division, Brig.-Gen. Joe Paul, is issuing new directions on the carriage of weapons at public events after soldiers took part in a Sikh parade in Toronto.


Images and video showed the Canadian Forces members on April 28 taking part in the Khalsa Day Parade in Toronto carrying C7 rifles with magazines inserted and without what the military calls a muzzle plug.

“Normally, weapons are not carried at such events,” the statement issued Tuesday by the Canadian Army noted. “The decision to have personnel in full Fighting Order was made by the local commander and was not in keeping with the Canadian Armed Forces Manual of Drill and Ceremonial.”

“The Commander 4 Canadian Division is following up with the unit and is issuing additional direction to the entire division prohibiting the carriage of weapons at similar events,” the statement added.

Khalsa Day celebrates the Sikh new year and the establishment of the Sikh community in 1699.

The only time weapons are carried in public is on ceremonial parades, in accordance with very specific circumstances as outlined in the Canadian Armed Forces Manual of Drill and Ceremonial, or during military demonstrations such as a tattoo, according to the Canadian Forces.

“A blank firing adaptor (what is referred to in the question as a muzzle plug) is normally used in cases where blanks are loaded in the weapon,” the statement added. “Since the weapons the soldiers were carrying were not loaded with ammunition nor blanks, a BFA was not used.”

The Canadian Army noted in its statement that “the unit Commanding Officers authorized this in a misguided attempt to show a well-equipped CAF.”

It is typical when marching in such parades to walk out of formation, but never carrying weapons, the Army added.” Any parade in which weapons are carried would have to adhere to the Canadian Armed Forces Manual of Drill and Ceremonial.”

The Commander 32 Canadian Brigade Group approved participation in the Khalsa Day Parade and he assigned the task to the Commanding Officer of the Lorne Scots, who issued the order detailing participation – including authorizing unloaded weapon carriage and dress, the Army stated.




Sikhs in Canada - Khalsa day Parade Totonto 2019

Dream Abroad
Published on Apr 29, 2019



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Post by Apollo on Tue 30 Apr 2019, 8:31 pm

Military on defensive after soldiers wrongly given guns for Sikh parade

The Canadian Press
APRIL 30, 2019

Canadian Army general issues additional directions on carriage of weapons after Khalsa Day Parade Cpt136545636-jpg

OTTAWA — The Canadian military is scrambling to explain why a group of soldiers was issued weapons to march in a Toronto parade on Sunday for Canada's Sikh community.

Photos and videos of the event show the soldiers, many of them turban-wearing Sikhs, marching in the Khalsa parade in military uniforms and carrying assault rifles, which the military says is not normally allowed. They were also escorted by an armoured vehicle.

The only time service members can carry weapons in public is during certain military parades or demonstrations such as a tattoo, according to Canadian Army spokeswoman Karla Gimby.

The commanding officer of the Lorne Scots reserve unit, which is based in Mississauga, signed off on the weapons, Gimby added, after his commander approved participation in the parade and asked him to organize the soldiers' participation.

"Normally, weapons are not carried at such events," she said in an email. "The decision to have personnel in full fighting order was made by the local commander and was not in keeping with the Canadian Armed Forces Manual of Drill and Ceremonial."

The army's top commander in Ontario, Brig.-Gen. Joe Paul, is following up with the unit and has issued additional orders prohibiting the carrying of weapons at similar events, Gimby said.

The military could not immediately say whether a formal investigation or disciplinary action had been launched.

Held to commemorate the Sikh holy day of Vaisakhi, the annual Khalsa parade in Toronto has grown over the years to become one of Canada's largest such events, with an estimated 100,000 attendees.

This year's parade also coincided with the federal government's decision to remove a reference to Sikh extremism from a report on terrorism after it was added for the first time in December, sparking outrage from members of the community.

Balpreet Singh Boparai, legal counsel for the World Sikh Organization in Canada, acknowledged that some might try to use the photos and videos of Sunday's parade to stir up fears of Sikh extremists infiltrating the Canadian Forces.

But he said the Khalsa parade has nothing to do with extremism, adding the military has participated in many such events before and, "personally, I believe if this was a group of white soldiers, people who don't look different, it wouldn't have been an issue."





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Post by Terrarium on Wed 01 May 2019, 12:59 pm

Khalsa Day Parade Picture - Trudeau's Liberals in Trouble Again

CanadaPoli
Published on May 1, 2019



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Post by Charlie on Thu 02 May 2019, 8:37 am

CANADIAN ARMED FORCES May 1 2019


Military orders investigation after soldiers photographed carrying rifles at Khalsa Day parade

The Canadian Armed Forces have ordered an investigation after soldiers with the 4 Canadian Division were photographed in “full fighting order” at a parade celebrating the Sikh new year.






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Post by Charlie on Thu 02 May 2019, 8:40 am

May 1 2019


Sajjan reiterates unit of soldiers carrying weapons at the ready at parade was ‘inappropriate’

Defence Minister Harjit Sajjan reiterated his statement on Wednesday that a unit of soldiers carrying their guns unmuzzled at a Khalsa Day parade was “inappropriate” and said it was being looked into.





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Post by prawnstar on Thu 02 May 2019, 12:53 pm

What a poor representation of our Reserve Forces. Looks like they are on a patrol not a public parade. Their CO needs his knuckles rapped.

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Post by Jeremiah on Fri 03 May 2019, 7:22 pm

Sikh soldiers marching in Khalsa Day parade draws fire

May 3, 2019

Canadian Army general issues additional directions on carriage of weapons after Khalsa Day Parade Soldiers




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Post by Powergunner on Sun 05 May 2019, 8:40 pm

TAYLOR: There’s beauty in a clearly defined chain of command

Scott Taylor
Published: May 5, 2019

Last week the social media platforms were set abuzz over a photograph depicting a squad of armed Canadian soldiers in combat uniforms, seemingly on patrol on the streets of Toronto. The majority of these soldiers wore regimental turbans adorned with the cap badges of several different militia units. They were in loose order, rather than in formed ranks and they carried their C-7 assault rifles at the ‘low-ready’ as if on patrol.

The photo was first posted by Toronto Sun columnist Tarek Fatah along with his commentary on this as being “Canadian Sikh soldiers march in Toronto’s Khalsa Day Parade. What’s next? Jewish soldiers to mark Yom Kippur or Hindu soldiers marching for Diwali? Stop it please. Trudeau is turning our Canadian Armed Forces into an ethnic vote-getting spectacle. Stop ghettoizing our military.”

Admittedly, at first glance the photo appeared to be a fake news story, a bit of doctored click bait which Fatah had fallen for. My colleague David Pugliese of the Ottawa Citizen, undoubtedly Canada’s best defence reporter, retweeted Fatah’s twitter post with a cautionary alert to it possibly being a fake, and a promise that he would follow up the story with Public Affairs.

Turns out that photo was indeed authentic, and that the participation of these Sikh-Canadian soldiers in the April 28 Khalsa Day parade had been authorized by no less than the commander of 32 Canadian Brigade.

The approval for participation is easy enough to understand, as the Khalsa Day parade is a significant annual event for the Sikh community, drawing a crowd of more than 100,000.

Where the wheels came off this cart was when the commanding officer of the Lorne Scots Regiment was tasked to fulfil his brigade commander’s commitment. Apparently, this lieutenant-Colonel wanted to demonstrate to the Khalsa Day parade audience that Canada’s army is a well-equipped, capable combat force. To facilitate this he authorized the participants to march in ‘full fighting order,’ with assault rifles. Who instructed them to carry these weapons at the ‘low-ready’ is not clear.

For those familiar with such things, it is well known that on the rare occasions in which soldiers are authorized to parade in public with weapons, there are strict guidelines to follow. As one would expect, the Canadian Forces manual on drill and ceremony is very specific about every movement and proper sequence. Hence the surprise among the military community to see this squad posed more for an actual war-zone, than on ceremonial parade in the streets of Canada’s largest city.

In responding to media questions about this incident, Defence Minister Harjit Sajjan, himself a Sikh-Canadian veteran, stated that “While the intentions to participate in this event were good, the choice that was made was inappropriate.”

A military spokesperson confirmed that the incident is currently under investigation and could result in administrative or disciplinary measures being taken.

In response to the military’s admission of this being ‘inappropriate’ some would-be army supporters began questioning why this particular parade was being singled out by the top brass. Several other photos appeared online showing similar scenes — one included a fully geared-up special forces operative on the streets of Edmonton — as if somehow these multiple wrongs would somehow make a right.

Personally, I don’t agree with Fatah’s assertion that participation in such events ghettoizes our military. Nor do I agree with Balpreet Singh Bopari of the world Sikh organization in Canada, who commented to media in the wake of the parade, “If this was a group of white soldiers, people who don’t look different, it wouldn’t have been an issue.”

Turbans have been official headgear in the Canadian military since 1986 and Sikh-Canadians in uniform are a familiar sight within the military community.

What upset people was the image of Canadian soldiers casually displaying lethal weapons, in ragged formation on a civilian street.

This case will not need a lengthy investigation to determine who made the ‘inappropriate’ blunder. That is the beauty of a clearly defined chain of command. It should also not result in a re-writing of the guidelines. Those are already clearly defined — they just need to be followed.

Scott Taylor is editor of Esprit de Corps magazine





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