Senior ranks of Canadian military get makeover ahead of tough federal budget

The Canadian Press

OTTAWA - A major shakeup is in the offing amid the senior ranks of the Canadian military.

The country's deputy top commander, Vice-Admiral Bruce Donaldson, along with the heads of the army and navy will retire in the coming months.

An internal notice, posted at National Defence headquarters last night, announced the changes, and they come as the military struggles to deal with pending budget cuts and a massive internal reorganization.

Donaldson will be replaced as vice chief of defence staff by Lt.-Gen. Guy Thibault, a career army officer who recently served in Washington.

The commander of the Canadian Army, Lt.-Gen. Peter Devlin, a veteran of Afghanistan, is also leaving, to be replaced by Lt.-Gen. J.M.M. Haines, who currently serves as deputy commander of NATO's joint force command in Naples.

Haines will be replaced overseas by Maj.-Gen. Jon Vance, the country's most experienced battlefield commander in Kandahar.

Vice-Admiral Paul Maddison also announced his retirement and will be replaced Rear-Admiral Mark Norman.