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"Re-Royalization", "Re-Britification" and the Heritage Transformation

The RCN has its old rank titles and executive curl back. What should be the next step for the CF ra

  • Nothing. The current rank system works, so leave it alone.

    Votes: 128 55.7%
  • Complete return to the pre-unification ranks of the 50s and early 60s.

    Votes: 48 20.9%
  • Complete return to post unification ranks of the 70s and early 80s.

    Votes: 1 0.4%
  • Officers only return to the pre-unification ranks of the 50s and early 60s.

    Votes: 9 3.9%
  • Copy the UK rank system - it is the prototype anyway.

    Votes: 20 8.7%
  • Copy the US rank system - they are the new colonial master.

    Votes: 4 1.7%
  • Create a whole new Canadian system.

    Votes: 9 3.9%
  • Lobby for standardized NATO rank insignia.

    Votes: 9 3.9%
  • Copy the French rank system - it is the other founding nation's turn

    Votes: 2 0.9%

  • Total voters

Veteran`s son

Should the rank of Lance Corporal be part of the CF rank structure again?

Instead of having three ranks for a Private there would then be Private Untrained, Private Trained and Lance Corporal.

Of course, the exceptions are Engineers, Armoured, and Artillery who have the ranks of Sapper, Trooper and Gunner for the rank of Private Trained.

What is everyone‘s opinion on this question?
Wouldn‘t lance corporal just be a pretty name and a lot of paperwork to change?
Q: Re-introduce Lance Corporal?

A: No, not required.

If we re-introduced Lance Corporal, wouldn‘t we then have to get rid of Master Corporal? In the days of Lance Corporals and the like, the Corporal rank was the first leadership rank. That is why on ceremonial dress MCpl‘s wear two chevrons, indicating the rank of Corporal which is/was the same rank. Confused yet? Let‘s just leave the present rank structure the way it is.
Lance Corporal is not a rank, it is an appointment.

Lance Corporal does NOT equal a Master Corporal!

In the old system, you had


A private could be appointed Lance Corporal; he wore one chevron and was generally 2 i/c of a section.

A corporal wore two chevrons and was a section commander.

A corporal could be appointed Lance Sergeant, he would wear three chevrons and was generally a weapons crew commander or similar position.

They got rid of the Lance Corporal and Lance Sergeant appointments, and instead created the appointment of Master Corporal. A Master Corporal is considered a command rank like the old Corporal position; THEN you needed a junior NCO course to be a corporal. NOW you need the junior NCO course to be a master corporal.

The Corporal of old was thus equal to the Master Corporal of today in terms of authority and command powers.

Lance Corporal was a weird in between kind of a thing, and while technically considered a full fledged NCO, I don‘t believe he was all that well respected in actual practice. The Lance Corporal then and the Corporal now are in effect the same thing - a position with no real command power and little actual authority, though to a new private, today‘s corporal is a bit better at getting attention than the Lance Jack of old.
The rank structure isn‘t broke, why fix it?
Well, maybe it could use a little fixin‘... Mcpl is not a rank, it is an appointment within the rank of Cpl. Strange, considering the rank of Cpl is nothing more than a well-paid Pte, and Mcpl is the first Leadership appointment. The difference in pay is also a joke. We make fun of the number of Sgts in the US Army, but find another Army where a Rifleman (or it‘s equivalent) can be of 3 different ranks (Pte(B), Pte(T) and Cpl).
There was a study about 10 years ago to get rid of the Mcpl appointment. Not a bad idea, today‘s Cpl would be Pte(T) with the Cpl‘s pay, and Cpl would become the first Leadership rank, replacing the Mcpl. Of course it didn‘t come through, as half the Army complained about losing one chevron and being called a Pte again, some for the rest of their career...
Personally, I think we should have done it, and simplify the rank structure.
We should change the titles of all Cpls to LCpl, all MCpls to Cpl, and take thousands of $ from the Sea King replacement to make it possible. Or . . .

we could stick to priorities.

However, maybe there is room for changes to the rank structure. Consider the Warrant Officer ranks of the US military. These are intended for technical trades that require some level of authority to carry out their jobs. Instead of a third tier in the CF rank structure, could a similar effect be created by establishing appointments, which may be given to members of specific MOCs, and various ranks? (LCpl, MSgt, etc?) Typically, these appointments would not be required once an individual is involved in management duties related to their MOC, so they would not exist at the rank of WO or up.

Did master corporals not originally have section commander duties? When did the change to sergeant section commanders take place?
I thought the change took place when the ranks came into effect after unification. But, there are a lot of MCpl who are Sect Comds now and Cpl who are Sect 2ic. Perhapse it is a symptom of the CFs ability to retain leaders.
As McG pointed out, I have often seen cases where master jacks are sect cmdrs, and a long serving corporal gets informed on the Friday night that he is gonna be 2ic for the weekend. Our last ex, we had one of the longer serving Sgt as our PL OC, another long service Sgt as the PL WO, a Sgt who got promoted last May running one section, two MCpls running sections, and all three section 2ics were Cpls. Weps Det was also run by a Cpl.
Granted, our "usual" OC (it changes for ex to ex) was on a jump crse and we only have 1 WO left in the unit (who is on Roto). This highlights how well adapted we have become, with everyone being able to work one or two up as need be.

While the rank structure may not be the same as it was "back when it was hard", I really don‘t see a need to jumble **** everything AGAIN when, as other pointed out, we have bigger targets to take down first. I think part of the problem is we spend so much time on continual reorg that never focuses on changing the things that NEED to be changed.
I personally think rank of Corporal as currently used in CF is good, in terms of defining section chain of command.

If the section commander (sergeant) and the 2i/c (master corporal) get whacked, then the senior corporal takes charge.
Eliminates confusion to see who‘s senior among privates to see who‘s in charge, IMO.

However, I think rank of corporal should be earned, not just given away like it is right now.

I thought Brits had Colours Sergeant, not Staff Sergeant.

Also, Korean army has 3 grades of privates and corporal (or equivalent to). Usually you go up a rank every 6 month of your two year conscription.
And lots of bossing around. But that‘s army. :D
If I remember correctly,the rank of M/Cpl came in about mid 76, not on Unification 67,68.
I remember all the Cpl.‘s putting up there new hook‘s when the change came in and the discussion‘s about the new rank.As I had just joined the Engineer‘s that April,76.
The JNCO course they took was actually called "Infantry Section Commander Course" then, which qualified them for Master Corporal
The ISCC was qualifying us 5B and 6A in one 16-week course. So yes, all Infantry Mcpls were qualified as section comds, and up to the rank of Sgt.
McG, I don‘t think they would need to take anything away from the Sea King replacement project (if in fact there is such a project) to make changes to the rank structure. They could take a few million $$$ a year from all those social experiments the govt imposes on the CF... ;)
Speaking of the CF rank structure, it is interesting that not many regiments have another rank for Trained Private(Engineers, Armoured and Artillery are a few exceptions). Do I understand this correctly?

In everyone‘s opinion, should all regiments/units have another rank for Trained Private?
A lot of infantry regiments do have a separate rank for trained privates, depending on regiment.

Like, fusilier, rifleman, etc.
Guardsman is another rank title for privates in Guards units.

I‘ve seen Piper and Drummer used also, but only unofficially.
According to the opposition white paper "the new north strong and free",

Changes are also required to simplify the rank structure. Presently privates total
only about ten percent of the CF. Again as Professor Jack Granatstein said in
1997, “... with eighteen ranks between private and general, there are probably six
to eight ranks too many [with] ... a plethora of master corporals”. “Ranks”, he said
“should be rolled back at all levels”.
Wondering if anyone had thoughts on our rank structure. changes, cuts, additions, and all that. :cdn:
I‘m not sure about losing the past tradition just because of this guy that‘s not even in the military is whining about the infrastucture.

Nonetheless, the idea that there are six too many ranks is ridiculous. Look at the different levels of command, and you can see the need for them.

Section 2 i/c
Section commander
Platoon 2 i/c
Platoon Commander
Company Sergeant Major
Company 2 i/c
Company Commander
Regimental Sergeant Major
Battalion 2 i/c
Battalion commander

You thus get

Soldier - Corporal
Section 2 i/c - Master Corporal
Section commander - Sergeant
Platoon 2 i/c - Warrant Officer
Platoon Commander - Lieutenant
Company Sergeant Major - Master Warrant Officer
Company 2 i/c - Captain
Company Commander - Major
Regimental Sergeant Major - Chief Warrant Officer
Battalion DCO - Major
Battalion commander - Lieutenant Colonel

With the rank of Private and 2nd Lieutenant for an officer or soldier in training.

One might argue the need for the rank of "colonel"; it has never been a combat rank anyway, though now they have colonel in charge of brigades.

The real problem is not the number of ranks but the number of men filling high positions and drawing high salaries. I‘m thinking more of officers in research establishments, etc., but of course we all know the story about how we have more generals now than were on the establishment of First Canadian Army at the height of WW II.

I‘d love to know which ranks Doctor Granatstein thinks we need to cut out. Is this an accurate quote? I don‘t think he was talking about deleting ranks, I think he meant there were too many men holding too high a rank for their job.

It used to be a Corporal commanded a section, not a Sergeant.
You would know about htis than I Michael, but isn‘t this a return to the older system, with a corporal having more weight, etc.?
A return to the old system was exactly what Granatstein was asking for in the book.