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Knights of the air

There are few rivals in war who have shared the mutual regard and respect, even camaraderie, as did those who flew fighter planes during the two world wars. Theirs was a singular experience, the scale and intimacy of which were unique in the annals of conflict, even aviation, before or since. The chivalric tradition...
  • Sergeant Jeremy Blair was on his third Afghanistan tour, serving with Charles Company, 5 Platoon, 1st Battalion, Royal Canadian Regiment, when his unit got hit hard during a coalition offensive in the Panjwaii District southwest of Kandahar. It was September 2006 and Operation Medusa had...
  • Return to peacekeeping ends quietly

    July 19, 2019 by David J. Bercuson
    The Canadian experiment in United Nations peacekeeping—the mission to Mali—is ending with a whimper, not a roar. The return to peacekeeping by Canada, long-promised by Justin Trudeau’s Liberals, will be over after a year, as Canada had promised. The three CH-147F Chinook heavy transport helicopters...
  • A German commander’s assessment of the D-Day invasion

    July 17, 2019 by Stephen J. Thorne
    A field report submitted by Adolf Hitler’s commander-in-chief on the western front said the Allies’ invading D-Day forces gained a foothold in occupied Europe due to four key factors. In the report filed two weeks after the June 6, 1944, invasion, Field Marshal Karl R....
  • First Blood

    July 10, 2019 by Stephen J. Thorne
    Wednesday, March 13, 2002, broke sunny and cool as 500 Canadian soldiers assembled on the tarmac in the yellow morning light at the U.S. military base in Bagram, Afghanistan. Wearing their new green camouflage fatigues on combat operations for the first time, they sat and...
  • Last men standing

    July 3, 2019 by Stephen J. Thorne
    More than a million Canadians served in the Second World War. As of March 31, 2018, just 41,100 of them remained, according to Veterans Affairs Canada. They averaged 93 years old. Some 25,000 Canadians served in Korea. Sixteen months ago, 7,200 survived, average age 86....
  • Ted Martens: Dutch resistance fighter

    June 26, 2019 by Stephen J. Thorne
    Ted Martens did whatever he could to derail the Nazi war machine while serving with the Dutch resistance during the Second World War—then the Nazi war machine derailed him, but only briefly. Martens was captured early in 1942 and came within a hair’s-breadth of torture...
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