Last modified: 2005-07-23 by phil nelson
Keywords: military police branch | military flags: canada | thunderbird | garland: maple leaf |
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by Graham Bartram
Detail of the Thunderbird badge.
by Graham Bartram
This flag is used by the Military Police Branch (formerly the Security Branch). The flag is 1:2, white with a central red pale (one third of length) with the "Thunderbird" badge in the centre. The badge shows an Inuit thunderbird in black, while, yellow and red, surrounded by a maple leaf wreath. At the top is a St. Edward's crown and the scroll beneath reads "SECURITAS".
The Branch badge is based on the Thunderbird - a mythical native spirit, probably derived from the eagle, whose name signifies the voice of thunder. It is one of the most common emblems of the North West Coast native tribes and is usually the crowning figure on the carved totem poles placed before a chief's house. It is believed to be a symbol of supremacy and power in the life of the tribe. The mystique surrounding this emblem varies according to the legends of the tribe concerned. A common feature of its attributes, however, concerns its role as a protecting spirit, one which gives wise counsel and guards the tribe from evil and misfortune. The face on the breast symbolizes dual transformation. These attributes make it an appropriate symbol for the Security and Military Police services of the Canadian Armed Forces. It is a bold and striking emblem, distinctive in appearance and identifiably Canadian.
The heraldic blazon for the badge is: "Within a garland of Maple Leaves or, a cartouche argent edged or charged with a Thunderbird Proper, affronte head turned to dexter, beneath the cartouche a motto ribbon or, the whole ensigned by the Royal Crown Proper".
Blair Hart, Corporal
Canadian Forces Military Police Academy
11 February 2000