(April 26) – The Medicine Hat News reports that the first of four British Army major training operations at CFB Suffield in Alberta will commence in late May.
About 5,000 British Army troops will arrive to take part in four major exercises scheduled for this year the first under a renewed operating agreement announced on November 4, 2013.
CFB Suffield is the largest Canadian Forces Base and the largest Commonwealth military training base in the world. It is located in southeastern Alberta, 5.6 km north-northwest of Suffield, 50 km north of Medicine Hat and 250 km southeast of Calgary — and a nine-hour 7,030 km flight from the UK.
Here are some details as outlined by the newspaper:
Prairie Storm No. 1, held May 22 to June 10. About 900 soldiers with the 1 Royal Welsh battlegroup will conduct combined exercises with members of the Princess Patricia’s Canadian Light infantry.
Prairie Storm No. 2, June 27 to July 31 – Around 2,000 military personnel from the Kings Royal Hussars and Queens Royal Lancers battlegroups.
A full battlegroup from the Yorkshire Regiment, numbering 1,500 to 2,000, will deploy in Prairie Storm No. 3, set for the month of September.
A final exercise, in the last half of October, will involve four sub-units on targeted training.
Britain leases part of the Canadian base, called British Army Training Unit Suffield (BATUS). In 1971, the then Trudeau government granted the British access to three-quarters of the Suffield Block for armoured, infantry, and artillery live-fire training. BATUS is 2,690 sq km – between eight and nine times the size of the UK’s largest military training area at Salisbury plain, which is 375 sq km. The British relocated their operations to Canada after the Libyan government led by Col. Muammar Gadhafi negotiated the closure of foreign bases in that country.
Suffield is also the base for defence science organization (chemical warfare) and the Counter Terrorism Technology Centre.
The Canadian monopoly media treats such exercises and bases as “business as usual,” all the while it is raising a hue and cry about Russian military exercises – in Russia.
In the larger context, the operations of the U.S. and British militaries in Canada are part of the imperialists’ plans to establish a global network of military bases or “hubs.” These foreign military bases in Canada and Canada’s integration with the U.S. military profoundly damage not only Canadians’ desire to contribute to peace in the world, but the sovereignty of Canada.
With a file from David Pugliese, Defence Watch, Ottawa Citizen, April 26, 2014
Read more on this website:
Tony Seed, “CFB Suffield: Britain to train thousands of troops in Canada,” November 14, 2013