2 Intelligence Company

Unit Identification

Intelligence Branch Crest

E TENEBRIS LUX

"Out of the Darkness, Light"

Who We Are

2 Intelligence Company deals primarily with tactical, or combat intelligence, which is intended to secure tactical advantage. The distinction between strategic and combat intelligence is essentially one of scope and point of view. Combat intelligence in a deployed command is concerned primarily with that specific operation and is generally generated from sources organic to that command, whereas strategic intelligence is more intended to support defence planning at the national level.

In general, Intelligence staffs must monitor and assess the capabilities and operations of adversary manoeuvre firepower, and information operations systems, and how these are supported by the adversary’s protection and sustainment systems. In developing an understanding of adversary functions in a given area of operations it becomes possible to predict the adversary’s intentions.

Intelligence staffs are required to develop detailed knowledge of the threats and conditions that exist for the particular mission. Maximum use will be made of classified and unclassified databases, local agencies and advanced information collection systems, such as satellite surveillance, to supplement normal combat information gathering means.

Intelligence duties involve the establishment and maintenance of various databases, containing any or all of the following: maps, documents, reports, video, imagery and multi-media. These databases can be physical or electronic, so computer skills are increasingly important.

Members normally start as collators, plotters and loggers, handling the incoming data, as well as structuring and manipulating databases for the use of analysts. They will also be required to conduct research using various conventional and electronic resources. Once proficient at managing and researching data, the member will progress to analysis, in which the data is turned into meaningful intelligence, able to be passed on to the relevant users.

Command Team

Commander: Captain D.A.M. Johnston, MBA, BA, CD

Sergeant Major: Master Warrant Officer R.D. Santos, CD

About Military Intelligence

Intelligence is the sum of our knowledge and understanding of the environment in which military activities are conducted. This includes knowledge pertaining to the activities, capabilities and intentions of adversaries, belligerent parties in Peace Support Operations, neutral stakeholders, and the physical environment where the military force must operate. Generally, Intelligence personnel are responsible for maintaining situational awareness about Enemy, Weather, and Terrain.

Intelligence is the product resulting from the processing of information concerning foreign nations, hostile forces, or areas of operations. We also use the term Intelligence to refer to the activity resulting in these products. Intelligence products can include formal written reports and summaries, graphic presentations, oral briefs, or any medium that best communicates information to those who need it.

As part of a headquarters, Intelligence staff are responsible for directing the collection of information by researching, managing and analyzing the incoming information to produce relevant intelligence and disseminating this intelligence to senior decision-makers. This intelligence is then used in the planning and conduct of operations. In short, Intelligence personnel are commanders’ information managers.

Our History

2 Intelligence Company perpetuates the presence of a military intelligence unit in Toronto that can be traced back to the original No. 2 Mounted Guides Company, formed in 1903. Before the First World War the British and Canadian armies used units of mounted guides for long-range reconnaissance and scouting tasks. Some short-lived experiments at creating a Canadian guide unit had previously been attempted: the Montreal-based Royal Guides fought a successful skirmish against Fenian invaders in 1866, while Dennis’ Scouts, recruited from Westerners, scouted for Canadian forces in the 1885 Northwest Rebellion.

Combat intelligence as we understand it today really began in earnest for Britain and its dominions with the South African War (1899-1902), and the creation there in 1900 of the “Field Intelligence Department,” as a dedicated scouting and intelligence gathering organization. Several Canadians served in intelligence roles in South Africa. When the war concluded, the value of such an organization seemed so obvious that it was organized on a permanent basis in all the Dominion armies: the Canadian Corps of Guides in 1903, the British Intelligence Corps in 1905, and the Australian Intelligence Corps in 1907. Militia guides companies were formed in all the Canadian military districts, including Toronto’s No. 2 Company.

When the Great War broke out in 1914, many Canadian Corps of Guides officers were incorporated into the (Imperial) Intelligence Corps, whose members fulfilled intelligence responsibilities for all the British Empire’s contingents. Intelligence officers wore green tabs on their uniforms, to distinguish them from other staff officers, the “red tabs.” Intelligence tasks in the First World War were very similar to those conducted today, such as the generation of intelligence summaries (INTSUMs), which contain a comprehensive picture of the threat situation. The 1st Canadian Division is recorded as the first division in the armies of the British Empire to produce a regular INTSUM, starting in 1915. Canadian formations also had a larger number of intelligence officers than other countries’, with each brigade having its own Intelligence Officer (IO), a practice unheard of in British brigades.

Remarkably, despite the value that had been demonstrated of training intelligence specialists, Britain and Canada chose to disband the Intelligence Corps as an organization at war’s end…. only to have to rebuild it almost from scratch again when the next world war began 20 years later. The British Intelligence Corps was re-formed in 1940, and the Canadian counterpart (renamed the Canadian Intelligence Corps) officially established in October, 1942. Even before the official birthday, the reconstituted Canadian intelligence staff had suffered three fatalities, all at Dieppe, 19 August 1942: another five members were taken prisoner there.

Intelligence in WWI and WW2

Intelligence duties in the Second World War included interrogating captured enemy personnel and examining captured material, and maintaining what we would now call a “database” on enemy forces and improvements in weapons and equipment. Enemy radio activity was intercepted and decoded, and supplemented by reports from Canadian reconnaissance patrols and tactical air reconnaissance photographs to assist in this effort. Information from all these sources was carefully evaluated, and then communicated to Canadian commanders… similar to how battlefield intelligence is practiced today. By the end of the war, several hundred Canadians were serving in intelligence teams worldwide.

This time when the war ended, there was no talk of disbanding again. In 1948, militia intelligence companies were created once again, to provide support to Canadian regular army, with 2 Intelligence Training Company located in Toronto. Intelligence in this Cold War period maintained a large focus on “field security,” specifically counter-espionage work. It seemed to made sense, therefore, when in 1968 the intelligence and military police organizations of the army, navy and air force were all amalgamated into a single Canadian Forces Security Branch… part of the sweeping Hellyer unifications that merged the armed services to create today’s Canadian Forces. As part of this change, the reserve intelligence companies were folded into local military police organizations, losing their individual identities for a time.

This experiment proved short-lived, however. In 1982 the Canadian Forces separated the policing and intelligence functions from each other, and reserve intelligence companies were reformed for a third time. Since then, Toronto’s 2 Intelligence Company has provided a ready source of trained augmentees to perform intelligence duties with Canadian contingents abroad… most recently in both Afghanistan and Bosnia.

Intelligence and Special Operations in WW2

Canadian military intelligence in World War Two worked closely with the British Special Operations Executive (SOE), which was responsible for clandestine operations behind enemy lines. Among the intelligence officers who worked with the SOE was Capt. Frank Pickersgill of Winnipeg. After receiving his MA at U of T in 1938, he went travelling in Europe, where he was caught up in the war and interned as an enemy alien by the Germans and put to hard labour. After a daring escape from a German prison camp, he returned to Britain. He turned down a posting with the Canadian External Affairs department, and enlisted instead as an army intelligence officer, briefing Canadian units on conditions in German-occupied France. He volunteered to be parachuted into France with the SOE to support the French Resistance. Along with John Kenneth Macalister, another U of T student and Rhodes scholar from Guelph, Ontario, he was inserted on the night of June 15, 1943. Tragically, the two 28 year-old Canadians were almost immediately picked up in a random search by the German army.

The two men were tortured by the Gestapo, who wanted them to pretend to still be free, and so encourage more SOE personnel to parachute in and be captured. Neither cooperated with the enemy. Pickersgill never gave up hope of escape, at one point disabling a guard with a bottle and leaping out a second story window, before SS guards shot him four times and recaptured him. Sent to the Buchenwald extermination camp, he and Macalister were strangled as spies in early September, 1944. Buchenwald survivors said Pickersgill continued to try to keep his fellow captives’ spirits up to the very end, telling bad jokes and encouraging them to march in step like soldiers.

Canadian military intelligence personnel were also involved in recruiting and screening potential SOE operatives at home in Canada. Chinese-Canadians, French-Canadians, and recent European immigrants from Hungary, Yugoslavia, and other countries were approached and interviewed for enrolment by local Canadian military intelligence staff, before being sent to the North American SOE training camp, Special Training School 103 (also known as Camp X, or just “the farm”) in Whitby, Ontario, for special operations training.

History Sources

Online

The Canadian Forces Intelligence Branch Association (www.intbranch.org)

Books

Camp X / by David Stafford. Toronto: Lester & Orpen Dennys, 1986. 327 p.

The Intelligence Service within the Canadian Corps, 1914-1918 / by James Emanuel Hahn. historical resume by Sir Arthur Currie; foreword by J.H. MacBrien. Toronto: Macmillan, 1930. 263 p.

Scarlet to green: a history of intelligence in the Canadian Army 1903-1963 / by S.R. Elliot. Toronto: Canadian Intelligence and Security Association, 1981. 769 p.

Canadians behind enemy lines 1939-1945 / by Roy Maclaren. Vancouver: UBC Press, 1981. 330 p.

Contact Us

2 Intelligence Company
LCol George Taylor Denison III Armoury
1 Yukon Lane
Toronto, ON  M3K 0A1

Telephone: 416-633-6200
Recruiting: 416-633-6200 x2954

2intcoy.recruiting@forces.gc.ca

Hours of Operation

Monday–Friday, 9:00 a.m.–5:00 p.m.
Wednesday Evenings 7:00pm – 10:00pm

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