A small team of Canadian special operations forces have deployed to Israel in the wake of the October 7 attack, Global News has learned from multiple sources with direct knowledge of the mission.
The deployment includes Joint Task Force 2 (JTF2), Canada’s most elite and secretive military special forces unit. Joint Task Force 2 is Canada’s national mission force responsible for the most dangerous and sensitive missions the military undertakes, including counterterrorism and hostage rescue.
Sources told Global News the Canadian Special Operations Forces Command (CANSOFCOM) troops in Israel are dealing with security at the Canadian embassy (including any possible future evacuation of essential staff) and liaising with the Israel Defense Forces (IDF).
That is consistent with what retired Major-General Denis Thompson, a former CANSOFCOM commander, would expect, telling Mercedes Stephenson on The West Block that the special operations forces typically deploy to crisis areas quickly owing to their high state of readiness and agility, activating an “immediate task force” which enables them to draw on JTF2 and other units to accomplish their mission.
JTF2 are also Canada’s designated hostage rescue unit and Thompson said they could be involved in helping the IDF plan rescue operations — but he did not suggest Canadian special operations forces would be planning any independent rescue efforts or participating with the Israeli efforts.
JTF2 is a secretive military unit. Largely engaged in acts of terrorism, the west describes as counter terrorism. Most people wouldn’t understand that reality. Think of terrorism and counter terrorism as opposite sides of the same coin.