Friday, January 8, 2016

Engineers help keep HMCS Brandon in the Operation CARIBBE fight

Pacific Region News / January 8, 2016

By Lieutenant (Navy) Greg Menzies

When the mission is operating a warship as part of the multinational campaign against illicit trafficking in the eastern Pacific Ocean and people are depending on you, it is essential to have a warship operating at its best. To do that requires hard work, long hours and determination. Operating in a sweltering climate makes it that much more difficult, as engineers on board Her Majesty’s Canadian Ship (HMCS) Brandon found out during their last deployment on Operation CARIBBE. The largest and one of the busiest sections in the warship has six Naval Reserve marine engineering system operators, a Regular Force marine engineer, an electrical engineer and a weapons engineer.

“The warmer weather definitely keeps us busy as it has the greatest impact on our operations,” said Petty Officer 2nd Class Luc Trudeau, an electrical engineer on board Brandon. “It’s not only the air temperature and humidity that affect our mechanical and electrical systems, but the ocean temperature and salinity as well.”

Leading Seaman Kyle Uhlig
Leading Seaman Kyle Uhlig, a marine engineering system operator, conducts his hourly round in the main switchboard room in HMCS Brandon while deployed to the Eastern Pacific on Operation CARIBBE. Photo: DND
The warship’s systems include propulsion, hot and cold fresh water, refrigeration and air conditioning, as well as steering, and every system is affected by the outside temperature, humidity and ocean salinity. For example, warmer waters have higher salinity, making fresh water production at sea more difficult. Higher levels of salinity cause more strain on the Reverse Osmosis Diaphragm process pumps, which are needed to pump salt water into the system used to make fresh water.

“In this type of environment, we need to check the CAMS [Central Alarm Monitoring System] every 15 minutes compared to every hour in more northern climates found off the coast of Canada,” said Master Seaman Katherine Van Blyderveen, a marine engineering system operator on board Brandon. “We routinely conduct visual inspections; however, these become a little more thorough and temperature readings are taken more frequently to ensure we can identify any potential problems early on.”

In climates with extreme heat and humidity, the demands placed on a ship’s mechanical, hydraulic and electrical systems can result in systems malfunctioning from continuously operating in these environments.

Before sailing to warmer climates, engineers stock up on extra parts and equipment to mitigate certain challenges while at sea. “Teamwork is all it takes to prevent, diagnose and fix any problem at sea. There is nothing more satisfying than knowing that despite all the challenges of operating in a warmer climate, a little teamwork is all that is needed to keep any ship mission capable anywhere around the world,” said PO2 Trudeau.

Canada in Iraq: RCAF Targets 3 ISIS Fighting Positions near Haditha and Ramadi

In a statement on it's OP IMPACT webpage, DND announced that on 7 January 2016, while taking part in coalition operations in support of Iraqi security forces, two CF-18 Hornets successfully struck two ISIS fighting positions southeast of Haditha using precision guided munitions.

Also on 7 January 2016, while taking part in coalition airstrikes in support of Iraqi security forces operations to clear ISIS from Ramadi, two CF-18 Hornets successfully struck an ISIS facility used as a staging area and for vehicle-borne Improvised Explosive Device (IED) storage in Ramadi using precision guided munitions.

Thursday, January 7, 2016

Virtual Reality Training for Sustaining Astronauts’ mental health at CFS Alert

News Article / January 6, 2016, DND Press Release

From the Geisel School of Medicine, Dartmouth College

A team of international investigators is testing a new virtual reality technology at Canadian Forces Station Alert, Nunavut, this winter. The project, which began last week, will see if simulated natural beauty can relieve astronauts’ psychological challenges of living in the isolated confines of deep space travel.

The original welcome sign at Canadian Forces Station Alert, Nunavut, with the many location and direction signs that have been added to it throughout the years. Alert’s long winter night – this photo was taken in the early afternoon of January 19, 2015 – makes it an ideal location to test a virtual reality system designed to maintain astronauts’ psychological health on long-duration space flights. PHOTO: Sergeant Ronald Duchesne, Rideau Hall
Canadian Forces Station (CFS) Alert, which belongs to the Royal Canadian Air Force, is the most northerly, permanently inhabited location in the world, only 817 kilometres from the geographic North Pole.

The team is led by Jay Buckey, a physician and former astronaut. The project’s primary goal is to find “effective ways to maintain and even improve astronauts’ psychological health on long-duration space flights” to Mars and elsewhere, explains Dr. Buckey, who is the project’s principal investigator and a professor at Dartmouth’s Geisel School of Medicine.

The virtual reality technology will bring nature’s restorative sights and sounds to the inhabitants of CFS Alert, immersing them in virtual reality scenes from New Hampshire’s beautiful mountains, produced by Dartmouth’s Digital Arts Leadership and Innovation (DALI) lab, and picturesque landscapes from Australia and Ireland. The CFS Alert personnel will also experience virtual scenes and sounds called “Virtual Wembury”, produced by Professor Robert Stone at the University of Birmingham, that allows users to navigate Wembury, a seaside village in the United Kingdom. Virtual Wembury is currently part of a research program in the UK sponsored by the Royal Centre for Defence Medicine, evaluating the impact of virtual scenes of nature on the recovery patterns of patients within the Intensive Care Unit of Birmingham’s Queen Elizabeth Hospital.

At the project’s conclusion, the CFS Alert personnel will be asked to rate the virtual scenes for their realism and immersion, which scenes they preferred and why, and how the scenes affected their mood and stress.

The Dartmouth-led project includes Defence Research and Development Canada (DRDC), an agency of Canada’s Department of National Defence, and is supported by NASA’s National Space Biomedical Research Institute (NSBRI). The research is designed to enhance psychological health in space, but it is useful in other settings such as intensive care units.

Since 2001, in a separate project, Dartmouth, Harvard and other institutions have been developing the “Virtual Space Station”, an interactive suite of software programs designed to maintain astronauts’ psychological health and to resolve interpersonal conflicts on long-duration missions, with support from NSBRI. The mental challenges of long-duration space flights have been studied for years, but astronauts currently have audio and video access to ground support only when communication links are available. On longer missions like one to Mars, transmission delays will make real-time therapy problematic. Computer-based treatment offers an autonomous way to address these important problems. The current Virtual Space Station system includes self-guided multimedia programs on depression, conflict and stress management.

Government Will move Forward on Military Vehicle Sale to Saudi Arabia

Written by Emily Chan, CTV-News

Foreign Affairs Minister Stephane Dion says the federal government "will not cancel" a private contract that sees military vehicles sold to Saudi Arabia, despite international criticism over 47 executions that took place in the Middle Eastern kingdom this weekend.

Dion told CTV News that there have "always" been concerns, but Canada will engage in a "very vigorous process" to ensure that the LAV III light armoured vehicles are not misused.

"It is a commitment we have made that we will not cancel private contracts, but we will engage with the authorities in Saudi Arabia to make sure they’ll be properly used," he said.

The $14.8-billion arms deal, negotiated by the previous Conservative government, was expected to create 3,000 jobs in Southern Ontario.

Earlier Tuesday, Dion's communications director Adam Barratt said the government "carefully reviewed" the proposed arms export before granting a permit to General Dynamics Land Systems Canada.

"Canada ensures that … human rights considerations are seriously taken into account," Barrat said in a statement.

Conservative MP Tony Clement told CTV’s Power Play Tuesday that a review was conducted during the previous government to ensure that the equipment was being used to "fight the bad guys, fight terrorism or aggressive nations that Saudi Arabia was facing in the Middle East."

"It was specifically designed to make sure they weren’t using the equipment against their own people," he added.

This is not the first time the arms deal has come under scrutiny.

In September, Stephen Harper faced flak when a 17-year-old arrested in Saudi Arabia for participating in political protests was sentenced to beheading and crucifixion.

The issue also arose on the federal election campaign trail, and in discussions about imprisoned blogger Raif Badawi, whose wife lives in Quebec.

This weekend, Saudi Arabia's mass executions renewed focus on the controversial deal.

The federal government officially condemned the executions in a statement on Sunday.

"Canada opposes the death penalty and decries the execution of 47 individuals in Saudi Arabia on January 2, 2016," the statement read. "In the wake of these executions, we reiterate our call to the Government of Saudi Arabia to protect human rights."

The statement made no mention of the multi-billion dollar agreement to export armoured vehicles to the country. It went on to express concern that the execution of prominent Shiite cleric Nimr al-Nimr could "further inflame" tensions between Shiite and Sunni Muslims in the Middle East.

Nimr's execution has already sparked widespread protests, and strained relations between Iran, which is Shiite-dominated, and Saudi Arabia and its allies.

On Tuesday, Dion also spoke out against an attack on the Saudi embassy in Tehran, which occurred amid the protests.

"We disagree completely about what happened (with) the embassy in Iran -- it is not helping," said Dion.

"We want positive steps between these two countries. We invite these two countries to stay calm and to focus on what is really important, and it is to fight the terrorist group the so-called Islamic State."

Dion was also asked if Canada was considering reopening its embassy in Iran, which has been closed since 2012 because of "heightened regional tensions."

"Yes, but the government of Iran will need to take more seriously the Vienna (Convention) to protect diplomatic personnel and assets," he said.

Meanwhile, Clement said that Iran remains a "state-sponsor of terrorism," and that Canada should not reopen its embassy until Iran renounces its support for extremists groups,

"Unless the Tehran government can guarantee that diplomatic and consular assets are safe, then I think it would be the height of irresponsibility to open a mission," he said.

Cabinet Reviewing Options to Bolster OP IMPACT

Written by Robert Fife With a report from Campbell Clark, The Globe and Mail 

The federal cabinet is reviewing options to bolster Canada’s role in the U.S.-led coalition against the Islamic State that run the gamut from maintaining surveillance and refuelling aircraft to clandestine operations, military and government officials say.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau promised during the election to pull Canada’s CF-18 fighter jets out of the bombing mission but pledged a more robust training mission for the Canadian military.

Military sources, speaking on background, say General John Vance, Chief of the Defence Staff, has placed at least six options before the cabinet for vetting that include a substantial role for Canadian Special Operations Forces but also for the regular army.

Cabinet is expected to make a decision within the next 30 days.

“We have a lot of choices to make and we have our own means, and we must conduct a rigorous selection with the Minister of Defence, the Minister of International Development, the Prime Minister. We are looking at that very attentively,” the Minister of Foreign Affairs, St├ęphane Dion, told The Globe and Mail Tuesday.

Canada has 69 special forces training Kurdish soldiers and 600 Air Force personnel in Kuwait, where six CF-18s are based along with two surveillance planes and one refuelling tanker.

Sources say the wide-ranging recommendations to cabinet include:
  • Retaining surveillance and refuelling aircraft in Kuwait;
  • Sending up to 150 special forces to train Kurdish peshmerga fighters;
  • Using regular Canadian army trainers for Iraqi security forces;
  • Training Iraqi troops in nearby Jordan;
  • Training Iraqi police and increasing humanitarian assistance;
  • Using elite Joint Task Force 2 commandos in black ops in Iraq and Syria like Canada did in Afghanistan.
Military experts say cabinet is almost certain to accede to the Pentagon’s request for Canada to continue to provide its refuelling tanker and Aurora spy aircraft.

Retired Lieutenant-General Ken Pennie, a former commander of the Royal Canadian Air Force, said Canada’s refuelling aircraft allows coalition fighter jets to operate 24-7 while the Auroras are outfitted with sophisticated radar and optical systems to identify Islamic State militants on the ground.

“The enemy forces out there don’t present a really easy target. They are hiding in schools and in hospitals. They don’t move around in large concentrated groups … so the Auroras are really value-added because they can find these targets,” he said.

Retired Major-General David Fraser, a former commander of Canadian troops in Afghanistan, said the proposal to conduct training exercises in Jordan would face opposition from the coalition and within Iraq.

“Politically, it makes a lot more sense to us because you don’t have to worry about Canadian Forces getting in firefights, but from an operational point of view the Iraqis and Kurds won’t like that at all.”

Mr. Fraser said Gen. Vance would almost certainly propose clandestine operations by Canada’s elite JTF2 commandos, although the Foreign Affairs Minister was quick to rule that out.

“We said very clearly during the election campaign that we wanted to end direct combat activities. So if that’s the question, it’s not part of what we are considering doing. But what is left to do is so enormous anyway, we won’t be short,” Mr. Dion said.

Mr. Dion said Canada can play a role in helping to stabilize liberated Iraqi towns and cities by helping to train police and local militias.

Regardless of what the government decides, Mr. Fraser said it’s unlikely to win Canada many accolades from the United States and Western allies whose fighter jet pilots are bombing Islamic State targets.

“If we don’t have our fighter jets, we are not going to have much of a voice,” he said. “We won’t get much recognition. Strategically, at the political level, we are going to lose here.”

FWSAR Bids Due Monday

After more than a decade of delays, aerospace firms will submit their bids next week to provide Canada’s air force with a new fleet of search-and-rescue planes.

So far, three companies have said they plan to bid on the $3.1 billion project.

The bids are due Monday, Pierre-Alain Bujold, spokesman for Public Services and Procurement Canada, said in an email.

Aerospace companies will submit bids proposing a combination of aircraft and in-service support to replace the Canadian military’s existing fleet of Buffalo and Hercules aircraft used for search and rescue, he said.

The Buffalos, first purchased in 1967, are key to search and rescue on the west coast and in parts of the Rockies. Those aircraft are already facing mechanical and technical problems and several years ago, the air force had difficulty obtaining spare propellers.

Airbus Defence and Space plans to offer Canada its C-295 aircraft while Alenia is bidding its C-27J plane.

The Brazilian aerospace firm Embraer has said it will propose its KC-390 aircraft.

Canada released its request for proposals from industry on March 31.

But the Department of National Defence and Canadian Forces first announced the project to buy a new fleet of search-and-rescue aircraft in 2004.

The Conservatives reannounced that project as part of their Canada First Defence Strategy. In 2008, then-defence minister Peter MacKay called the project a top priority and vowed to buy a new fleet of planes by early 2009. That never happened.

In 2011, DND and the Canadian Forces again noted the project was to be one of their top procurement goals over the next three years but the acquisition has continued to limp along.

On Tuesday, a report from the Canadian Global Affairs Institute and the University of Calgary blamed delays in equipment purchases on the turnover of ministers and senior military staff as well as on delays caused by federal elections.

But aerospace industry representatives say that wasn’t the case with the proposed purchase of the fixed-wing search-and-rescue planes. Shortly after the project was launched, various aerospace firms accused the Canadian air force of rigging the contract to favour Alenia’s C-27J. Those accusations, in turn, caused years of delays as government officials painstakingly tried to ensure the process was seen to be fair.

Senior air force officers denied there was any favouritism at play.

But Alan Williams, the Department of National Defence’s former assistant deputy minister for materiel, later testified before a parliamentary committee that the Canadian air force had designed the requirements for the original search-and-rescue aircraft project to favor the C-27J, prompting the complaints to government from companies.

In 2014, the Citizen obtained DND documents that also blamed some of the delay on the Conservative government’s freeze on hiring staff. That resulted in a shortage of personnel in the search-and-rescue aircraft project management office, according to the records.

DND officials acknowledged the freeze had created some problems but noted that it was only temporary and the situation has improved.

During the election campaign, the Liberals promised that their government would “prioritize the acquisition of cost-effective search and rescue aircraft.”

The project originally envisioned buying 17 aircraft. But that has been changed and it will be up to aerospace firms to submit in their bids the numbers of aircraft they believe are needed for Canada to handle the needed search-and-rescue capability.

Canada in Iraq: RCAF Conduct 4 Airstrikes near Haditha against ISIS Targets

In a press release on it's OP IMPACT webpage, DND announced that on 6 January 2016, while taking part in coalition airstrikes in support of Iraqi security forces, two CF-18 Hornets successfully struck three ISIS vehicle-borne Improvised Explosive Devices (IED) and one ISIS vehicle southeast of Haditha using precision guided munitions.

The RCAF has increased its presence in the US-led coalition. Through the month of December, the RCAF dropped more bombs than days. RCAF CF-18s dropped 32 precision-guided bombs on Islamic State forces over a 30-day period. As of Dec. 1, 2015, the total number of bombs dropped by CF-18s during the entire Operation Impact was 514, according to statistics provided by the Canadian Forces to Defence Watch. As of Dec. 31 that had increased to 546, the Canadian Forces noted in updated stats provided Wednesday.

Wednesday, January 6, 2016

Canada in Iraq: RCAF Strikes 3 ISIS Positions Near Al-Baghdadi

In a press release on it's OP IMPACT webpage, DND announced that on 3 January 2016, while taking part in coalition operations in support of Iraqi security forces, two CF-18 Hornets successfully struck an ISIS rocket emplacement in the vicinity of Al-Baghdadi with precision guided munitions.

Also on 3 January 2016, while taking part in coalition operations in support of Iraqi security forces, two CF-18 Hornets successfully struck two ISIS vehicle-borne IEDs north-west of Al-Baghdadi with precision guided munitions.

RCAF has 60 CAF Members Trained on CH-143 Cyclone

The RCAF continues to prepare for the introduction of the new Cyclone maritime helicopter. The RCAF is currently flying the aircraft, conducting Initial Operational Test and Evaluation, according to the Department of National Defence. Training of personnel is also continuing. “There are currently 40 technicians, 7 pilots, 6 air combat systems officers and 6 sensor operators currently trained on the Cyclone Block 1.0,” said DND spokesman Daniel Le Bouthillier.

As for the RCAF’s Sea Kings, 24 are currently in flying status, he added. To date, four aircraft have been removed from flying status but have yet to be formally disposed of, Le Bouthillier said. “Up to 4 more” will be removed from flying status in 2016, he noted.

Tuesday, January 5, 2016

HMCS Fredericton deploys on Operation REASSURANCE

DND Press Release:

January 4, 2016

OTTAWA — Media are invited to attend the departure ceremony of Her Majesty’s Canadian Ship (HMCS) Fredericton on January 5 as the ship deploys to the Mediterranean Sea on Operation REASSURANCE.

Operation REASSURANCE refers to the military activities undertaken by Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) to support NATO assurance measures and promote security and stability in Central and Eastern Europe through the provision of military capabilities for training, exercises, demonstrations and assigned NATO tasks. The CAF response in support of NATO’s request for enhanced assurance measures demonstrates the readiness and professionalism of the CAF.

When:Tuesday, January 5, 2016 at 1 p.m. (AST)
Where:NB Jetty, HMC Dockyard, Canadian Forces Base Halifax, NS. 

CAF Snowbirds Receive ICAS Platinum Pinnacle

News Article / January 4, 2016

By Lieutenant Patricia Brunelle

The Canadian Forces Snowbirds demonstration team has received the 2015 ICAS Platinum Pinnacle Award for excellence in the air show business in the “military performer” category. The award was presented to 431 Air Demonstration Squadron during the 2015 International Council of Air Shows (ICAS) luncheon in Las Vegas, Nevada, on December 8, 2015.

The ICAS Pinnacle Awards recognize the ideas and professional execution that are essential for the continuous sustainability and improvement of the air show industry. The awards fall into seven categories that reflect professionalism, innovation, and overall excellence in air show operations and management.

“It was very exciting having the hard work of the pilots and maintainers acknowledged by ICAS,” said Lieutenant-Colonel Brad Wintrup, commanding officer of 431 Air Demonstration Squadron – better known as the Snowbirds, who fly the CT-114 Tutor. “This project successfully showcased the skill, professionalism and teamwork of the men and women of the Royal Canadian Air Force to audiences across North America.”

The Canadian Forces Snowbirds air demonstration team break into the “Canada Burst” during their spring training at 19 Wing Comox, British Columbia, in April 2015.
The Canadian Forces Snowbirds air demonstration team breaking into the “Canada Burst” during their spring training at 19 Wing Comox, British Columbia, in April 2015. Photo: DND - TankCam
The Snowbirds received the award as a result of their excellent work with the TankCam. The TankCam is a modified smoke tank mounted on the belly of the team lead’s aircraft. The tank holds three high-performance cameras able to capture stunning video and imagery of the entire formation in flight.

“The reaction to this project was more than we expected,” said Snowbird 1, Major Patrick Gobeil, during the 2014 and 2015 air show seasons. “Spectators were able to experience flight with the Snowbirds in a way that had never been seen before.”

The effects of the TankCam went beyond capturing rarely seen imagery of the formation; air show spectators and fans of the Snowbirds enjoyed seeing imagery of their hometowns, as seen from the formation, posted to social media. The Snowbirds training program also benefited from the TankCam because it was an important debriefing tool that allowed for a safer and more proficient show team.

Monday, January 4, 2016

Den Tandt: Predicts CF-18s will Remain in Iraq

One of Michael Den Tandt's predictions for 2016 is that the Liberal Government will go back on at least one election promise, and it has to do with its decision to withdraw the CF-18s from Iraq.

In his 2016 Prediction opinion piece in the Ottawa Citizen, Den Tandt, says, "Trudeau and his cabinet will reverse course on a couple of major policy files early in 2016. The first will be their pledge to withdraw Canadian CF-18 fighters from the battle against the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant."

That could possibly happen, seeing has the US-led coalition has made big impacts over the past few weeks, helping Iraqi forces retake Ramadi, and planning on helping more in Mosul in the coming weeks.

The RCAF has conducted  17 airstrikes since December 23rd,  2015; mainly in the vicinity of Mosul, as well as Sinjar, Kisik, and Ramadi.

CAF Rangers Travel 100km to Rescue Fisherman

By Peter Moon

A Canadian Ranger search and rescue team travelled more than 100 kilometers in severe weather conditions during a 12-hour mission to find and rescue a fisherman whose snowmobile broke through river ice, leaving him stranded near the Hudson Bay coast.

The fisherman, Sam Hunter, a guide and hunter from Peawanuck, left his bush camp on Friday to collect fire wood and do some ice fishing when his snowmobile sank unexpectedly through ice on the Burnt Point River, about 50 kilometres northeast of Peawanuck. He was thrown over the handle bars onto hard ice and injured his knees slightly.

He was unable to recover his snowmobile but he was able to get into the nearby tree line and get a fire going as the temperature dropped to -18C with a wind chill of -27C. He used his GPS device to send out a text message on Facebook to seek help. The message was seen by several people in Peawanuck who alerted the police and the Canadian Rangers.

“I put together a four-person search team,” said Sergeant Matthew Gull, the Peawanuck Ranger patrol commander, “and we left Peawanuck shortly after 4 p.m. We knew Sam needed help.”

The team snowmobiled through frequent periods of near white-out conditions caused by severe snow squalls. “It took us four hours to find his camp,” Sergeant Gull said. “We often couldn’t see 20 feet in front of us. Sam’s a diabetic and I saw right away he didn’t have his medication with him, he’d left it in his camp. We knew he was somewhere near his camp but we didn’t know where, so we had to look for him in very difficult visibility. We got turned around ourselves several times. I said we had to find him.”

The searchers were driving along a frozen river when they saw a flicker of white light. ‘It was from his flashlight,” Sergeant Gull said. “He didn’t say anything as we drove up. I just approached him and gave him a big bear hug and I told him: ‘Man, I’m glad you’re alive.’ And he said: ‘I’m glad you got here.’”

They gave him hot tea and food, recovered his snowmobile, and got it restarted. They managed to find their way back to his camp, collect his belongings, and after a quick meal, they set out for the return trip to Peawanuck, with Hunter driving his own snowmobile.

They got back to Peawanuck shortly after 4.30 a.m. on Saturday. Hunter was released after a medical check-up at the nursing station.

“I’m so proud of my Rangers,” Sergeant Gull said. “Sam was in trouble and without his medication he might not have made it. The Rangers missed out on some community New Year celebrations and I missed my daughter Emelia’s seventh birthday party. But it was worth it. We got him”

The other members of the Ranger team were Master Corporal Pamela Chookomoolin and Rangers Aaron Isaac and Zavier Patrick.

“This is another example of the readiness of the Rangers to serve their communities in an emergency,” said Lieutenant-Colonel Matthew Richardson, commanding officer of the 3rd Canadian Ranger Patrol Group. “Like Sergeant Gull, I am very proud of the Rangers. In the past year they have done some remarkable rescues across the Far North of Ontario, often in very difficult conditions, and they have saved a lot of lives, as they probably did with this rescue. We should all be proud of them. They do a great job.”

(Sergeant Peter Moon is the public affairs ranger for the 3rd Canadian Ranger Patrol Group at Canadian Forces Base Borden.)
Canadian Rangers with stranded Sam Hunter shortly after they found him are, from left, Ranger Aaron Isaac, Sergeant Matthew Gull, and, kneeling, Ranger Zavier Patrick. Photo by Master Corporal Pamela Chookomoolin, Canadian Rangers

Sunday, January 3, 2016

Canada in Iraq: RCAF Targets 4 ISIS Positions in Single Day

Released on it's OP IMPACT webpage, the RCAF conducted the following airstrikes on January 2, 2016:

On 2 January 2016, while taking part in coalition operations in support of Iraqi security forces, two CF-18 Hornets successfully struck two ISIS fighting positions south west of Sinjar, using precision guided munitions.

On 2 January 2016, while taking part in coalition operations in support of Iraqi security forces, two CF-18 Hornets successfully struck an ISIS compound near Bartallah, (east of Mosul), using precision guided munitions.

On 2 January 2016, while taking part in coalition operations in support of Iraqi security forces, two CF-18 Hornets successfully struck an ISIS compound near Kudilah, (southeast of Mosul), using precision guided munitions.

Cadets from the USAF Academy tour an RCAF CF-18 at Camp VINCENT , Kuwait. Photo: CAF Combat Camera - June 2015