I think someone forgot to flush the toilets at 101 Colonel By Drive…. the shit is overflowing at NDHQ.
Well David Pugliese had this article in the Ottawa Citizen today. The story involves the Minister of National Defence and the Canadian Armed Forces Chain of Command using the Canadian Forces National Investigation Service to harass and intimidate the Office of the Ombudsman of the Canadian Armed Forces.
The Federal court has rebuked the military and compensation has been paid to members of the Office of the Ombudsman of the Canadian Forces.
It just doesn’t get any fucking better than this.
The story is available here at: https://ottawacitizen.com/news/national/defence-watch/dnd-investigations-into-ombudsmans-staff-exposed-as-shoddy-lacking-in-evidence
The Office of the Ombudsman for the Canadian Forces enjoys a rather unique position of independence from the Canadian Armed Forces.
Unlike the Military Police Complaints Commission which may only ‘ask’ for documents from the Canadian Forces Provost Marshal during investigations of complaints against the CFNIS. And unlike the Military Police Complaints Commission which may only ‘ask’ for persons to participate in their investigation. The National Defence Act makes mandatory the participation of military members in any Ombudsman investigation.
This is because criminal charges cannot result from any Ombudsman investigation or inquiry. The Ombudsman may only recommend changes and possibly compensation or other remedies.
The Office of the Ombudsman of the Canadian Armed Forces was the agency that recommended that while the Canadian Armed Forces were “technically correct” to deny benefits or compensation to any of the 12 to 18 year old cadets that were killed or injured in the 1974 grenade explosion at Canadian Forces Base Valcartier, it was absolutely the immoral thing to do considering that the regular force member whose negligence led to this disaster was allowed to receive benefits and compensation from the Canadian Armed Forces. The Ombudsman recommended that the Canadian Forces make amendments posthaste and offer the survivors compensation, counselling, and therapy.
There is one problem with the Office of the Ombudsman of the Canadian Forces. That problem is that the Ombudsman may only undertake investigations that the Minister of National Defence agrees to.
See, the Office of the Ombudsman of the Canadian Forces would have been the perfect agency to investigate the matter from Canadian Forces Base Namao. No criminal charges could ever flow from an Ombudsman investigation or findings.
P.S. could give all the information that he wished and he would never face criminal charges for what he said. Nor would P.S. be in violation of his Non-Disclosure agreement that he had to sign with the Government of Canada in November of 2008 in order to receive his settlement from the Government of Canada.
The Ombudsman could have called witnesses, including anyone who had been subject to the Code of Service Discipline during the events of the Captain Father Angus McRae affair.
Even though my father is dead now, had the Ombudsman conducted an inquiry while my father was still alive it would have been fun asking my father to explain just exactly who the hell was looking after his children from 1977 until 1981 if he was always away on training exercises and his wife had “abandoned the family” years prior. Was he letting his children run feral on a military base? Did he just drop his kids off at a random neighbour’s house for 6 weeks while he went and played soldier out in the woods?
The Ombudsman could have made recommendations to DND and the Canadian Forces so far as how to deal with the survivors of the Captain McRae fiasco.
But I can see why the Minister of National Defence would have declined the Ombudsman the permission to review the matter.
This would have been far too risky for DND.
If this matter had been reviewed by the Ombudsman, and news of this review made it to the media, how many other former military dependents would come forward with their allegations against DND and the CF?
Would the Ombudsman have made the formal recommendation that any and all child sexual abuse matters be formally handed over to the civilian police?
Would the Ombudsman make the recommendation that the Canadian Forces and the Department of National Defence hire an independent investigation firm to conduct a completely independent and arm’s length investigation looking at how many children were sexually abused on the bases from 1950 until the present day?
Would the Ombudsman make recommendations that Parliament pass the required legislation to nullify the effects of the pre-1998 3-year-time-bar flaw and the Summary-Investigation flaw for matters that could be considered to be child sexual abuse?
There’s just far too much risk for the Minister to allow the Ombudsman to go digging into the MIlitary’s copious dirty laundry.
And I know from speaking with various investigators with the Office of the Ombudsman that the Ombudsman has been fighting for even more independence from the Canadian Armed Forces and not having to rely on the permission of the Minister of National Defence to conduct investigations that look at historical matters which occurred prior to when the Office of the Ombudsman was created in the late ’90s.