Canadian Forces Europe

Canadian Forces Europe was the Canadian Military Forces training in Europe during the Cold War . The CF assisted the NATO activities of Warsaw Pact and the Soviet Union .

Canadian Forces Europe (CFE) consisted of two courses in West Germany , Canadian Forces Base Lahr , with the 4 Canadian Mechanized Brigade Group (1957-1993), and No. 1 RCAF Air Division at Canadian Forces Base Baden-Soellingen , qui est devenu later 1 Canadian Air Group. Both formations closed in the early 1990s with the end of the Cold War .

Canadian Forces Europe 1989 units

Canadian Forces Europe also has a number of multi-service commands and units:

  • Canadian Forces Europe (CFE), CFB Lahr
    • Canadian Forces Element, CENTA HQ , in Heidelberg
    • Canadian Forces Element, ATAF HQ 4 , at Ramstein Air Base
    • Canadian Forces Element, AMF HQ (L) , in Mannheim
    • Canadian Forces Element, Airborne Early Warning Force , E-3A Component, at Geilenkirchen Air Base
    • National Support Unit, at Geilenkirchen Air Base
    • Communications Group Europe, CFB Lahr
      • Squadron Lahr Communications
      • Communications Squadron Baden-Söllingen
    • Canadian Forces Network , CFB Lahr
    • Canadian Forces Hospital Europe, CFB Lahr
      • Base Hospital Lahr
      • Base Hospital Söllingen
      • 35 Dental Unit, CFB Lahr
      • Detachment Söllingen, 35 Dental Unit
    • CFB Lahr
      • Base Post Office
      • Base Transportation Section
      • Base Maintenance (Land) Section
      • Base Supply Section
      • Base Construction Engineering Squadron Lahr
      • Base Ground Operations Section
      • Lahr Military Police Section
    • CFB Baden-Söllingen
      • Base Post Office
      • Base Transportation Section
      • Base Maintenance (Land) Section
      • Base Supply Section
      • Base Construction Engineering Squadron Baden-Söllingen
      • Base Ground Operations Section
      • Baden-Söllingen Military Police Section
    • 311 Forward Mobile Support Unit, providing general logistics support to CFE
      • Forward Storage Site, for units that would have been dispatched to Germany in case of war, in Zimmern ob Rottweil
    • Ammunition Depot Lahr
    • Ammunition Depot Söllingen
    • Training Area Langenhard

Canadian Army

Canada had maintained a presence in Europe as part of the NATO forces since 1951, when 27 Canadian Infantry Brigade was appointed to Hannover attached to the British Army of the Rhine (BAOR). This formation, which was formed primarily with Militia units, was moved to a permanent base at Soest in 1953. To begin with, it was intended to rotate brigades to Germany – 27 CIB was replaced by 1 Canadian Infantry Brigade Group in October 1953, which in turn Was Replaced by two Canadian Infantry Brigade Groupin 1955, and then 4 Canadian Infantry Brigade Group in 1957. The arrival of 4 CIBG saw a significant reinforcement of training capabilities; this has been done with a squadron of main battle tanks . The arrival of 4 CIBG saw a full armored regiment with Centurions and an independent brigade reconnaissance squadron with Ferrets . In 1959, when CIBG was made to change, it was changed in West Germany . CIBG and its associated brigade units in place, instead of rotating every major year.

The brigade was headquartered in Soest. Individual units were stationed both at Soest and other towns in North Rhine-Westphalia :

  • Soest – BHQ, 1 x infantry battalion, service units
  • Hemer – 1 x Infantry Battalion, Artillery Regiment
  • Werl – 1 x Infantry Battalion, Regiment Engineer, Field Ambulance
  • Iserlohn – Armored Regiment

In 1962, the brigade was reinforced with the addition of the Royal Canadian Armored Corps helicopter recce troop, equipped with nine CH-112 Nomad helicopters. By the mid 1960s, 4 CIBG’s manpower totalled 6,700 men; it featured three Mechanized infantry battalions, a reconnaissance squadron equipped with Both armored vehicles and helicopters, artillery equipped with Both fire support and tactical nuclear weapons , and an extensive logistic operation. The extent of the Canadian operation to the British describing it as „a light division“. [1]

The Canadian Mechanized Brigade Group in May 1968.

Structure 1989

  • Canadian Forces Europe
    • 1 Canadian Division (Forward) , CFB Lahr
      • 1st Canadian Division Headquarters and Signal Regiment, CFB Lahr
      • 1st Canadian Division Intelligence Company, CFB Lahr
      • 4 Canadian Mechanized Brigade Group , CFB Lahr
        • 4 CMBG Headquarters & Signal Squadron, CFB Lahr
        • 8th Canadian Hussars (Princess Louise’s) , CFB Lahr (77x Leopard C1 , 20x Lynx , 36x M113 , 2x M577 , 6x Bergepanzer )
        • 1 st Btn, Royal 22 e Regiment , CFB Lahr (2x M577, 65x M113 , 11x Lynx , 18x M113 TUA with TOW , 24x M125 with a 81mm mortar )
        • 3rd Btn, Royal Canadian Regiment , CFB Baden-Söllingen (2x M577, 65x M113 , 11x Lynx , 18x M113 TUA with TOW , 24x M125 with a 81mm mortar )
        • 1st Regiment, Royal Canadian Horse Artillery , CFB Lahr (2x M577, 26x M109A4 , 46x M113, 24x M548 )
        • 4 Combat Engineer Regiment , CFB Lahr (14x M113, 2x M577, 6x M548 , 9x Badger AEV , 6x Biber bridgelayer)
        • 4 Battalion Service , CFB Lahr (4x M113, 2x Bergepanzer, 6x MTV-R )
        • 4 Field Ambulance, CFB Lahr
        • 4 Military Police Platoon, CFB Lahr
      • 4 Air Defense Regiment, Royal Regiment of Canadian Artillery
        • Headquarters & Battery Service, 4 Air Defense Regiment, RCA (2x M 577, 2x M113)
        • 127 CFB Lahr Air Defense Battery (detached to 4 Canadian Mechanized Brigade Group ) (12x ADATS , 15x Javelin , 5x M113)
        • 128 Air Defense Battery (detached to 4 Wing), Baden-Söllingen CFB (4x ADATS , 8x 35mm Skyguard )
        • 129 Air Defense Battery (detached to 3 Wing), SFB Lahr (4x ADATS , 8x 35mm Skyguard )
        • 4 Air Defense Workshop

In case of war 1 Canadian Division-have-been reinforced by Would 5 Canadian Mechanized Brigade Group of Canada and 1,400 men from 1 Canadian Mechanized Brigade Group Would Have beens feel to bring 4 Canadian Mechanized Brigade Group to full wartime strength. 1 Canadian Division would have been assigned to the Central Army Group Commander’s tactical reserve, performing operations in support of II (German) Corps or VII US Corps.

Royal Canadian Air Force

Saber Mk 5 of No. 416 Squadron at Grostenquin, 1953

To meet NATO’s air defense commitments during the Cold War , No. 1 RCAF Air Division was established in Europe in the early 1950s with four Royal Canadian Air Force bases in Franceand West Germany. These included RCAF Station Marville ( No. 1 Wing ) and RCAF Station Grostenquin ( No. 2 Wing ) in France and Royal Canadian Air Force Station Zweibrücken ( No. 3 Wing ) and Royal Canadian Air Force Station Baden-Soellingen (No. 4 Wing ) in West Germany. These wings consist of three fighter squadrons each.

RCAF Station Grostenquin was closed in 1964 and its units transferred to RCAF Station Marville. In 1967 Marburg was closed after France’s withdrawal from the RCAF Lahr Station (later CFB Lahr, now Flughafen Lahr ). RCAF Station Zweibrücken was closed in 1969.

Structure 1989

  • Canadian Forces Europe
    • 1 Canadian Air Division , CFB Baden-Söllingen , in war with Fourth Allied Tactical Air Force
      • 3 Wing CFB Lahr
        • 3 Wing Operations
        • 3 Communication and Air Traffic Control Squadron
        • 416 Tactical Fighter Squadron Gold 441 Tactical Fighter Squadron from Cold Lake CFB , 18x CF-18
        • 425 Tactical Fighter Squadron Gold 433 Tactical Fighter Squadron from CFB Bagotville , 18x CF-18
      • 4 Wing CFB Baden-Söllingen
        • 4 Wing Operations
        • 4 Communication and Air Traffic Control Squadron
        • 409 Tactical Fighter Squadron , 18x CF-18
        • 421 Tactical Fighter Squadron , 18x CF-18
        • 439 Tactical Fighter Squadron , 18x CF-18
        • Air Reserve Augment Flight (Reserve Pilots)
        • Training Flight, 5x CT-133 Silver Star
        • 1 Air Maintenance Squadron CFB Baden-Soellingen
      • 4 Construction Engineer Squadron, detached from Royal Canadian Engineers
      • 444 CFB Lahr ( CH136 Kiowa , UH1N ) Tactical Helicopter Squadron (detached to 4 Canadian Mechanized Brigade Group )
      • Detachment Lahr, 412 Transport Squadron , 2x CC-142 Dash 8
        • 5 Air Movement Unit


  1. Jump up^ Change of Command marks long period of service in Europe- Canadian Army