Permanent Active Militia

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Permanent Active Militia (PAM) was the proper name of Canada's full-time professional land forces from the 19th century to 1940, when it became the Canadian Army.

The PAM, also known as the Permanent Force (PF), was in effect Canada's standing army, consisting of one regular infantry regiment and two cavalry regiments until 1914. The PAM did not participate directly in the First World War; Canada's military contribution was the creation of a separate field force called the Canadian Expeditionary Force (CEF) into which volunteers (and later conscripts) were inducted for war service. The CEF was disbanded after the war.

The Otter Commission then reorganized Canada's post war military, expanding the PF to three infantry regiments and creating a system of perpetuations keeping the traditions of both the pre-war military and the CEF integrated in the Canadian military.

During the Second World War, the Permanent Force was renamed the Canadian Army (Active); it later became known as the Canadian Army Active Force, Canadian Army (Regular), and Force Mobile Command following Unification on February 1, 1968. On July 8, 2013, by order of the Minister of National Defence, the name reverted to the Canadian Army.

The counterpart to the PAM was the Non-Permanent Active Militia which existed during the same time frame, composed of part-time volunteer soldiers, and replaced in 1940 by the Canadian Army Reserve.


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