Well, here’s something that might come as a surprise to some people, but it doesn’t come as a surprise to me.
There were about 19,000 claims submitted for compensation.
If 40% of claimants were men that’s 7,600 men. And trust me men, especially in a military environment, are NOT going to be all that willing to come forward out of fear that others will judge them as being weak or of being a homosexual.
And if one sexual abuser in the Canadian Armed Forces had five or six victims that 7,600 sexually abused men could quickly become 45,600 men. And I don’t really want to think about the total number of men that were sexually abused by other men in the Canadian Armed Forces. According to some stats, over 90% of sexual assault victims never report their assaults.
I’ve known about this since 2014 when L’Actualite ran an exposé on sexual assault within the Canadian Armed Forces. Part of this exposé looked at male-on-male sexual assault within the Canadian Armed Forces. This exposé was stripped from the English version of this article that ran in Maclean’s magazine.
Male-on-male sexual abuse was frequently used to shame other members into compliance or to humiliate members that had “caused trouble” or used to blackmail a member into silence least his coworkers, friends, and family discover that he had participated in anal intercourse.
And I have absolutely no doubt that many male children living on the bases were subjected to this “discipline” in the household.
If a member of the Canadian Armed Forces is willing to force anal intercourse on a fellow adult member or if a member of the Canadian Forces is willing to force another adult member to perform fellatio on him in order to teach the other member a lesson or to change the other member’s non-conforming behaviour, you can bet that this type of behaviour found its way back into the PMQs on base.
Almost every type of discipline these men were taught would find its way back into the homes on base.
Once you engage in the military life, it’s almost impossible to separate and segregate the military life, the military training, and the military discipline from the home life.
I have absolutely no doubt that there are many a male military dependent that have some rather fucked up hazy memories from way back then. After all, it’s not like these male members were engaging in routine homosexual activities. They would just use male-on-male as a disciplinary tool.
It might have happened once.
It might have happened twice.
But I would be more than willing to believe that if it happened once or twice, that this would have been buried in the dark recesses of one’s mind.
Especially if it happened on a military base.
Who are you going to tell?
Who is going to believe you?
Are you really going to risk having your serving parent booted from the military?
Are you really going to endure the wrath of your serving parent if they found out that you tried to rat them out to the military police?
Sure does raise some interesting questions, doesn’t it?
Maybe this is one of the reason why the Canadian Armed Forces refuse to investigate historical child sexual abuse.
Maybe this is one of the reasons that some former serving parents are always telling their kids to forget about the past and to let sleeping dogs lie. Even if the serving parent in question didn’t abuse their own kids, were they aware of other service members that abused their own kids? Hard to keep secrets during an investigation, isn’t it? Might be best to just deny anything and everything, right?
I know that the National Defence Act and the Queen’s Regulations and Orders may be rather dry and boring reads. But everyone should at least have some basic familiarity with these acts as they are the corner stones of a separate and parallel justice system that exists in this country.
As my father would often say to me “I’m going to make this very fucking crystal clear to you”. The Provost Marshal can’t take a piss without permission from their superiors up the Chain of Command. There is absolutely no way that the Provost Marshal will ever be able to investigate persons of a superior rank without the support of someone else higher up the chain of command hierarchy.
This is the Canadian Armed Forces, not your local police department.
These members are all “Soldiers first, police officers second”.
Rank is paramount.
Yes, the Canadian Armed Forces and the Department of National Defence will prattle on uselessly about how the Provost Marshal and the CFNIS are at arms-length from the Chain of Command and can’t be influenced by the Chain of Command.
There is absolutely no language in the National Defence Act that enshrines this imaginary independence just as there is no language in the National Defence Act that requires the military police to hand off child sexual assault investigations to the civilian police even though there are administrative orders and policy guidelines that say just that. As I’ve learnt over the last eleven years, if it isn’t in the National Defence Act or the Queen’s Regulations and Orders then it means absolutely nothing.
This is the link for the current National Defence Act:
If you read through this you will see that there is absolutely nothing in there that officially places the Provost Marshal, the investigators within the CFNIS, or even the investigators within the military police outside of the Chain of Command.
Further down the same page there’s a very interesting part of the National Defence Act that says that the Vice Chief of Defence Staff may INSTRUCT the Provost Marshal on ANY investigation.
So, the Vice Chief of Defence Staff can instruct the Provost Marshal on ANY investigation, and the Provost Marshal is supposed to make these instructions available to the public, that is unless the Provost Marshal (no doubt on order from the VCDS) decides that it would not be in the “best interests of the administration of justice” to make these instructions available to the public.
Here’s an interesting section of the National Defence Act that applies to every and ALL members of the Canadian Armed Forces including members of the military police, members of the CFNIS, and even the Provost Marshal. There are NO exceptions written or implied to this section.
The term “lawful” still causes a lot of issues today. How is a subordinate supposed to know the legal validity of an order issued by a superior? There is no language contained within the National Defence Act that allows for a subordinate to ask the Judge Advocate General to provide legal opinion of a “lawful” command.
What this results in is a police department that is of very limited independence. This is a concern that the Military Police Complaints Commission has raised before in its submissions to the External Review of the Amendments to the National Defence Act.
And I truly and honestly believe that this lack of independence is what sank my complaint against P.S..
In 2020 the Military Police Complaints Commission revealed that the CFNIS had the CFSIU investigation paperwork and the July 18th, 1980 court martial transcripts in their possession which indicated that P.S. was known to the base military police, the CFSIU, and the Judge Advocate General as having sexually abused numerous children on Canadian Forces Base Namao. It was this abuse that lead to the investigation of Captain McRae and the discovery that Captain McRae had been luring children over to the base chapel and giving them alcohol prior to “fooling around with them”. In this paperwork was also McRae’s admission to his ecclesiastical trial that he had been sexually abusing children for years. So this covers his postings at CFB Kingston, CFB Portage La Prairie, CFS Holberg, and of course CFB Namao.
According to the MPCC in 2020 the CFNIS were aware that P.S. was arrested and convicted for molesting a young child in a town just north of CFB Petawawa in 1982, that P.S. was arrested and convicted for molesting a young boy in Manitoba in 1984, that P.S. was arrested and convicted for molesting a 9 year old boy on CFB Edmonton in 1985 when his family had been returned there, and that P.S. was arrested and convicted for molesting a young teen just after he had been kicked out of the military family housing on CFB Edmonton.
I have absolutely no doubt that it was a chain of command decision to not allow the CFNIS to bring charges against P.S.. And this wasn’t to protect P.S. so much as it was to protect the Canadian Armed Forces and the Department of National Defence from humiliation.
As the MPCC have said in their submissions to the External Review, investigators with the CFNIS won’t even know that the chain of command has interfered with their investigation if the interference occurs high enough up the chain of command.
How do I think the Chain of Command interfered with the CFNIS investigation into my complaint against P.S.?
When the CFNIS took my complaint away from the EPS in March of 2011 I have no doubt that when they entered the name of P____ S________ into the SAMPIS database an alert came up instructing the CFNIS to refer this matter to the Provost Marshal or to the office of the Judge Advocate General for instruction.
Angus McRae was still alive at the commencement of the investigation. Angus McRae didn’t die until May 20th, 2011. This posed a very serious problem for the CFNIS. Due to the 3-year-time-bar as well as the Summary Investigation flaws that existed in the pre-1998 National Defence Act, charges could never be brought against Angus McRae no matter what the investigation uncovered while P.S. could be charged. The 3-year-time-bar and the Summary Investigation Flaw applied to service offences. Service offences included but were not limited to “Gross Indecency, Indecent Assault, Buggery, Sexual Intercourse with Female under 14, Sexual Intercourse with Female 14 to 16, Sexual Intercourse with stepdaughter or ward, Incest”
When I was interviewed by Mcpl. Hancock on March 31st, 2011 he kept asking me if there was anything else that I wanted to talk about, anything at all. As the MPCC said, the CFNIS had the CFSIU paperwork and the Court Martial transcripts in their possession during the investigation. I have no doubt that Hancock was instructed to “go fish” and see if he could find out what I knew or remembered about the Captain McRae court martial.
On May 3rd, 2011 Mcpl Cyr contacted me and tried relentlessly to get me to believe that P.S. was only 12 or 13 years old when he had been caught buggering me in the spring of 1980. The CFNIS knew exactly how old P.S. was as they had access to the CFSIU investigation paperwork and the July 18th, 1980 Court Martial transcripts. P.S. was born on June 20th, 1965. He was 14 years old in the spring of 1980 when he was caught buggering me. He was old enough under the Juvenile Delinquents Act to be charged with Gross Indecency, Indecent Assault, and Buggery. By insisting to me that P.S. was only 12 or 13 the CFNIS were trying to get me to believe that there was no way to legally bring charges against P.S..
On May 3rd, 2011 Mcpl Cyr also let slip about Captain McRae. If the CFNIS didn’t have the CFSIU paperwork or the July 18 1980 Court Martial transcripts already in their possession, how would Mcpl Cyr have known about a then 30 year ols court martial? I told Cyr about the 5 visits, what we’d do when P.S. took me over to see McRae, and that I have no recollection after P.S. and McRae would give me a tumbler of “sickly sweet grape juice”. I’d learn in 2020 that the military police and the CFSIU knew in 1980 that McRae was taking children to the rectory at the chapel and giving them alcohol.
On May 4th, 2011 Mcpl Cyr contacted me and told me the chapel never had a rectory, that the chapel that I indicated to him in a “google snapshot” of the base was a different chapel from when I lived on the base, that when I lived on the base the chapel was in a completely different place and that the padre lived off base.. Why was he so intent on proving that there was no connection between myself, P.S., and Captain McRae.
I would find out in 2013 that the CFNIS had scrubbed any and all mentions of Captain Father Angus McRae from the investigation paperwork.
There’s my father’s dubious statement given to the CFNIS which excludes any mention of the fact that my grandmother was living in our PMQ and was actively raising my brother and I. The CFNIS needed to ensure that P.S. could not be linked to my brother and I in a position of authority, such as having been our babysitter. If it had been established that P.S. had been acting in a position of authority over my brother and I and that P.S. sis in fact use this authority to abuse my brother and I this would have posed problems for him. Did my father give the statement he gave to cover his own ass, or did he give the statement he gave because he had been coerced? Forgetting about grandma is a pretty significant faux-pas.
Why would the Chain of Command interfere with the CFNIS investigation of KNOWN serial child sexual abusers (McRae and P.S.)?
My guess would be to avoid public humiliation, public scrutiny, and financial risk.
To this day the Canadian public and the Canadian media are oblivious for the most part to the fact that children lived on the various Canadian Forces Bases in Canada. These children were sometimes sexually abused by members of the Canadian Armed Forces. Due to transfers, and flaws in the National Defence Act, bringing charges would often prove very hard to do.
In the matter of Canadian Armed Forces officer Captain Father Angus McRae, captain McRae was known by the Canadian Armed Forces to have molested well over 25 children on Canadian Forces Base Namao. The Canadian Armed Forces are also aware that during the court martial of Captain McRae in July of 1980 evidence was admitted that indicated that Captain McRae had sexually abused children for years.
During the Captain McRae court martial McRae’s defence counsel tried to use P.S.’s habit of sexually abusing children, as well as his recent psychiatric treatments to help him deal with his predisposition to sexually abuse children, as a means to discredit his testimony against Captain McRae.
For just about 40 years now the Canadian Forces have been able to keep this matter firmly under the rug. And the Canadian Forces are happy and content to keep it there.
I know of two persons who have committed suicide as a result of the CFB Namao child sexual abuse scandal.
I know of two persons who have attempted suicide as a result of the CFB Namao child sexual abuse scandal.
I know of others who have carried the scars of that abuse into their adult lives.
I am certain that I was not the only male child from Canadian Forces Base Namao to receive military “conversion therapy” as a result of the “homosexuality” that I had exhibited as a result of my abuse at the hands of P.S. and Captain McRae.
Also, I have absolutely no doubt that the Minister of National Defence, the Department of National Defence, and the Canadian Armed Forces do not want the Canadian public to discover that historical sexual crimes against children cannot be prosecuted against former service members due to the 3-year-time-bar and the Summary Investigation flaws that existed prior to 1998.
But I think the most significant reason as to why the CFNIS was instructed to run such a laughable investigation into my complaint against P.S. was that the Office of the Minister of National Defence wanted to avoid civil liability for the actions of their members on secure defence establishments for which the Canadian Forces owed a duty of security to those persons living on secured defence establishments.
If the CFNIS had been allowed to bring charges against P.S., how many of the other 25 children that P.S. and Captain McRae molested would have been allowed to bring civil actions against the Crown for damages for the abuse that occurred on a secure defence establishment in a building owned by the Canadian Forces which was orchestrated by an active officer of the Canadian Armed Forces regular forces?
I’m happy that the Minister of National Defence has moved all sexual assault investigations out into the civilian police. But not even the civilian police will be able to overcome the 3-year-time-bar or the Summary Investigation flaw.
And the civilian police will still run into the problem of trying to access the service records of members of the Canadian Forces who are under investigation for sexual assaults.
But yeah, there never was any independence of the Provost Marshal from the Chain of Command. Anyone who believed that the military police, the CFNIS, or the Provost Marshal from free from Chain of Command influence needs to come back to the world of reality.
Will it be business as usual or will there be meaningful change?
So Canada now has its second ever female Minister of National Defence.
The first ever female Minister of National Defence was Kim Campbell back in 1993. She wasn’t the Minister of National Defence for long as she went on to become Canada’s first female Prime Minister when Brian Mulroney, facing massive backlash for matters such as the North American Free Trade Agreement, decided to resign from politics.
Canada’s newest Minister of National Defence is Anita Anand. She has an extensive resume as a lawyer and as a law instructor. She was also the Minister of Public Services and Procurement since 2019. So she’s not exactly green behind the ears. And more importantly she has absolutely no connection to the Canadian Armed Forces and the Department of National Defence.
Will she be able to bring change to the Department of National Defence? When I first heard that Harjit Sajjan had been designated as the Minister of National Defence in 2015 after the Liberals won the election I thought for sure that he would be able to bring meaningful change to DND and the CF as he was a soldier that actually had done tours in Afghanistan and he used to be a detective with the Vancouver Police Department. I couldn’t have been more wrong about Sajjan. So I’m not holding my breath with Anand. She is a corporate lawyer, so she might understand the legal threat that examining historical child sexual abuse might prove to be for the Government of Canada.
Minister Anand has two choices.
She can use her legal background for the greater good.
Or she can use her legal background to erect walls and barricades around DND and the CF.