The Infantry
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Infantryman (031)

The Infantryman is the backbone of any fighting force; his role is to "close with and destroy the enemy". Trained to fight as a member of a Combat Arms team, which also includes Armoured, Artillery and Field Engineer occupations, the Infantryman is capable of performing in special operations such as airmobile and amphibious operations and environmental operations including those in Arctic, mountain, jungle desert areas.

What They Do

  • Use weapons such as rifle and pistol
  • Use explosives and pyrotechnics
  • Use mortars, machine guns, anti-tank weapons, missiles and grenades
  • Use communication, navigation and riot control equipment
  • Inspect and maintain weapons systems, vehicles and equipment (eg. clothing, survival gear and personal equipment)
  • Operate with support elements such as fighter aircraft, helicopters (troop carrying and reconnaissance, and artillery)
  • Unarmed combat, fieldcraft and battle procedures including camouflage and concealment internal security, patrol, escape and evasion tactics

Working Environment

The Infantryman performs his duties outdoors, by day or ty night exposed to all weather conditions. The work is physically and mentally demanding and is often carried out for long periods of time with little chance for rest. In combat or operational situations the job is mentally stressful and the risk of physical injury is always present.

Geographical employment can vary from stations within Canada to oversea locations throughout the world, in response to NATO and UN commitments.

Qualifications and Interests

An Infantryman must be dependable, able to react quickly and adapt readily to changing situations. Courage, self-discipline, physical and mental stamina and a positive attitude are essential attributes.

Advanced Infantry and Specialty Training Courses

Personnel who demonstrate the required ability and ambition will undertake advanced Infantry training through formal courses as they progress in their careers. Specialty training may also be available. Below are examples of training related to the MOC.

Advanced Infantry Training

Reconnaissance Patrolman
Anti-Armour Gunner
Assault Pioneer
Machine Gunners

Specialty Training Courses

Basic Parachutist
Military Freefall Jumpmaster
Para Instructor
Helicopter Observer
Mountain Warfare
Desert Warfare

Career Progression

Opportunities to career progression, promotion and advancement are good for the Infantryman. Personnel with good attitudes, leadership and man management qualities may advance quickly in comparison to other military tradesmen.

Related Civilian Jobs

The Infantry is a unique military MOC that has no related civilian occupation. The experience gained in the use and maintenance of vehicles, communication equipment, weapons and tools of all types as well as the leadership and management skills learned in the MOC can however, be very useful in the civilian labour market.

What is an Infantryman?

The foot soldier has always borne the lion's share of misery in battle. He must march long distances carrying heavy-loads. Subject to extremes of temperature, adverse terrain, and the gamut of military weaponry, his life in wartime can range from boredom to terror. Once the bombs have been dropped and the artillery fire lifts, however, he is expected to cross the final 300m separating his position from the enemy's, leaving the security of his trench or armoured vehicle to "close with and destroy the enemy." All else is the preparation for his assault. That he is able to accomplish his mission - often against his own natural fears - is a testament to his spirit, initiative, fitness, and commitment to his fellow soldiers and to the leadership of his NCOs and officers.

He has been able to persevere over the centuries because he is fit and he is flexible in his approach and employment in battle. new advances in technology give him the lethality and the mobility to continue to play a crucial role in our country's conflicts.

As a soldier, he is self sufficient as a fighting unit. He carries the tools of his trade on his back, needs little individual support and is expected to function efficiently in his assigned role. He must possess initiative, determination, team spirit and must unstintingly give of himself to those chosen to lead him and to his mates.

So you want to be in the Infantry?

Every year candidates arrive at expecting to be enrolled and trained as infantry soldiers, but have done little preparation of their own ... especially in respect to their personal fitness. As a result they cannot keep up with the rigours of daily physical training and field exercises. They fall back, they develop stress injuries, some quit. some are sent home for medical reasons due to their injuries. Others are given failing grades because they lack the necessary stamina to succeed in the infantry. This is particularly regrettable when they demonstrate the potential to be successful otherwise. In many cases, prior knowledge of the training with an emphasis on individual physical preparation can prevent the loss of a potential soldier.

Go back to the Infantry Regiments page.
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Military Word Of The Day
aerial recce
aerial reconnaissance

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Today in Military History

February 21


John Graves Simcoe proposed the "military street'' as a strategic route to help protect Upper Canada from American invasion. We know it as the longest street in the world, Toronto's Yonge Street, whose completion was announced today in history


The battle of Verdun begins


PPCLI presented with Wreath of Laurel by Lady Patricia Ramsey at Bramshot Camp, England


German resistance in Moyland Wood collapses after a week of fighting. The next objective for 1st Canadian Army will be the defences in the forests of the Hochwald.


A nine-man patrol from Princess Patricia's Canadian Light Infantry comes under fire in Korea. They are the first Canadian troops to be fired upon by the enemy in this United Nations "police action". No casualties are reported.

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