Happy New Year?

By Dr. Ann Griffiths, 31 December 2023

It’s the time of year for reflection, so I thought I’d take a few minutes to reflect on the past year for Canadian Naval Review and the RCN, and speculate about the year to come. As far as CNR is concerned, 2023 was a good year. We had a great response to the annual CNMT-sponsored essay contest – we received so many excellent submissions that it was hard for the judges to pick just one winner! We published a joint issue with Australian Naval Review which was an interesting and worthwhile exercise to compare perspectives on issues of interest to the navies of both Canada and Australia. We published a variety of articles and commentaries on important and timely topics by authors from around the country, and from other countries as well. And the discussion on Broadsides has been lively. In my extremely biased opinion, we’ve lived up to our slogan “insightful and engaging.”

When we reflect on the past year for the RCN, perhaps it hasn’t been such a good year. Recent reports indicate that sexual harassment continues. Personnel shortages are still acute. And the navy, and the Canadian Armed Forces in general, are now facing budget cuts. But, on the positive side, the navy introduced the Naval Experience Program, which may help with personnel shortages. As well, another AOPS was handed over to the navy, although it’s still not clear what will be done with the ships – right now there are four of them docked in Halifax, beautifully decorated for the holiday season. But perhaps they should be out doing offshore and/or Arctic work. Will the Canadian Surface Combatants appear? If so, how many of them? And when? Will there be movement to replace the Victoria-class submarines?

What are your thoughts about the year 2024? I’d be interested to hear what Broadsides readers think will happen for the RCN in the coming year.  


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