The Royal Canadian Navy’s (RCN’s) interna- tional engagements over the last several years have put a dent in the efforts of smugglers,
drug dealers, pirates and terrorists. Behind the scenes,
such operations also are building a network of relationships and alliances that will prove invaluable in the
future for the RCN and the Canadian Forces as a
whole, according to senior Canadian military leaders.
The RCN is taking part in two major international
missions: Operation Caribbe and Operation Artemis.
Caribbe is the mission to combat transnational
organized crime off the Caribbean and Pacific coasts of
Central America. Artemis is the name for Canada’s contribution to Combined Task Force 150, a multinational
effort to combat terrorism in the Arabian Sea and
Both are valuable not only for the specific accomplishments of each of the missions, but because of the relationships they create with allies, according to Canadian
Army LGen Stuart Beare, commander of Canadian Joint
Operations Command. That command oversees
Canada’s domestic and international military missions.
“They create relationships that
allow us to posture different mar-
itime operations or leverage those
relationships, networks and part-
nerships for other kinds of opera-
tions that are required,” Beare said.
“These relationships are animated
in a big way by the operations.”
In mid-December, the Canadian
Forces wrapped up Caribbe 2013.
That operation was one of the most
successful in terms of the total
amount of illicit drugs seized and
traffic disrupted since Canada
began the Caribbe mission in
November 2006, officers said.
During Caribbe 2013, the RCN
directly contributed to the seizure
of 5,080 kilograms (roughly 11,200 pounds) of
As part of the operation, the Canadian military contributed seven ships, four CP-140 Aurora maritime patrol
aircraft and a submarine. Four ships and three aircraft
deployed to the Western Caribbean Sea at various times
throughout the year, while the remaining assets focused
on the Eastern Pacific Ocean near Central America.
Overall, Caribbe represents a return by Canada to the
region. The Navy operated in the Caribbean Sea, particularly with training missions, during the Cold War, but
its presence had dwindled because of fiscal restraints.
“Around 2006, we returned with gusto to the Carib-
bean with a government of Canada mandate with Op
Caribbe,” said RAdm John Newton, commander of
Maritime Forces Atlantic. “Last year was our biggest year
ever operating in the mission.”
Caribbe has strengthened the RCN’s bonds with the
U.S. Navy and Coast Guard. There now are arrange-
ments in place to allow U.S. law enforcement officials
to operate onboard the Canadian ships and become
directly involved in at-sea interdictions.
Royal Canadian Navy’s international missions
bolster ties with allies, expand own capabilities
By DAVID PUGLIESE, Special Correspondent
The Royal Canadian Navy (RCN) has been taking part in the international missions Operation Caribbe and Operation Artemis.
■ As part of Operation Caribbe, the Canadian military contributed
assets that were deployed to the Western Caribbean Sea and
Eastern Pacific Ocean near Central America.
■ The frigate HMCS Regina joined Operation Artemis in the Arabian Sea on Feb. 15, replacing HMCS Toronto, which had been
operating in the region since February 2013.
■ Artemis has allowed Canada to develop or build relationships
with nations in the region such as Bahrain, Oman, Djibouti, Kuwait, Seychelles, Tanzania and the United Arab Emirates.
WWW.SEAPOWERMAGAZINE.ORG 32 SEAPOWER / MARCH 2014