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R.A. Flannagan Writing Posts

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What Capabilities Should the CAF Go Without?

I recently listened to a podcast where Canada’s Chief of Defence Staff talked about the future of the Canadian Armed Forces (CAF). As things tend to go with senior leaders from any large governmental organization, it was a guarded talk. There was however one thing I seized on from the General’s remarks. Specifically, on two occasions, he indicated that the CAF would have to choose capabilities (current or future) that it wouldn’t be able to take on. The comment got…

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How to Recruit More Soldiers into the CAF?

Recently, I wrote a detailed blog on why the Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) can’t meet its recruiting targets. Further to that post, the CAF announced it would allow Permanent Residents (PRs) to apply to the CAF. Subsequently, it was announced that 2,400 PRs applied to the CAF. This was an important and positive policy change for the CAF. If done well, recruiting, training and holding onto PRs could go some distance to increasing the CAF’s enrollment numbers and increasing the…

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What is Missing From Canada’s Indo-Pacific Strategy?

I did some reading up on Canada’s Indo-Pacific Strategy and the consensus seems to be that it’s a step in the right direction but that it is also modest. In Take Whiteman and its sequel, China plays a role, but it’s primarily in the background. In my novels, the United States is in the midst of a civil war and has largely pulled back from its international commitments. I have also assumed China has taken Taiwan and is asserting itself…

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Americans: Why do you put up with Canada’s defence spending?

I’ve now had just over 800 people download my first two novels. To my surprise, the majority of my readers indicate they’re from the United States. This being the case, I thought I would write this blog post as an open letter to my American readership.  And what am I writing to my American readers about? Just this – Why in the name of whatever you believe in do you tolerate countries like Canada spending virtually nothing on its own…

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Top 3 Books To Set You Up For Success

No Matter How Hard Life Gets At any given moment in time, life can suck. We all have bad spells. For some of us, it’s a bad day, for others it’s several years.   I can tell you that for the past two years, my own life has been particularly challenging. Perhaps the toughest two years of my life. Health issues, an extraordinary professional challenge, a new job, the selling and buying of houses, and the moving of a family…

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The Take Whiteman Defence Spending Analysis

If Canada Invested 2 percent of its GDP in defence what would the Canadian Armed Forces (the CAF) look like? The following analysis is for the purpose of having a bit of fun and creating discussion. My novel, Take Whiteman is entirely fiction. What’s below is also speculative. It is a thought experiment. It’s particularly timely in light of what has transpired in the Ukraine. Several journalists have been hand wringing over Canada’s paltry defence spending. Well, here’s something they…

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Should Canada Purchase New Submarines?

The Answer is… Yes! Now before I get into this topic, let me hedge everything that follows with this statement: Nothing in the article is meant to be a takedown of the men and women who serve within the Royal Canadian Navy. Every day, they do the best job they can do with the equipment they have and the mission they are given. They are a dedicated, competent, and admirable group of people. And I daresay, that in researching this…

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What Fighter Jet Should Canada Buy?

It should be Sweden’s J-39 Gripen So if you’re reading this there’s a good chance you read my book, Take Whiteman. Take Whiteman is fiction of course, but there are real world events that I like to offer my two cents on. Defence matters is one of those topics. And what fighter jet Canada is going to select in the coming months is perhaps the biggest defence policy issue in Canada right now. So to give my readers some unsolicited…

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