Major John Keess

John Keess

Lecturer / Ph.D Candidate

History Department

Royal Military College of Canada


John Keess is a Lecturer in the History Department at RMC who is concurrently pursuing a PhD in War Studies at the same institution. John holds an MA in History from UNB and has published on topics such as military organisation, strategic theory, and military history. He has deployed with the Canadian Armed forces to Afghanistan, Central and Eastern Europe, and the Middle East.

He is currently completing a PhD dissertation covering the life and work of Dr. R.J. Sutherland, an important Canadian operational researcher strategist and advisor of the 1950s and 1960s.

Current Interests

  • Strategies of minor powers
  • Canadian Cold War history

Selected Publications:

  • Keess, John. “Freed by Limits: The Strategic Realities of the Canadian Army, Close Engagement,  and the Potential for a new way of thinking about Canadian Land Power.” Canadian Army Journal, 19, no.3 (2022): 62-71 
  • Keess, John. “Canada ignores the security needs of its European partners at its own peril,” National Post,  16 March 2022, 
  • Canadian International History Committee, “PRISONERS OF THE PAST? A Conversation about History and Policy,” 12 April 2022, 
  • Keess, John. “International Society, Health, and Defiance: An English School Analysis of Melian and Belgian Responses to Wartime Ultimata.” Diplomacy and Statecraft 31, no. 3 (2020): 405–28.
  • Keess, John. "Strategic Parasitism, Professional Strategists and Policy Choices: The Influence of George Lindsey and Robert Sutherland on Canadian Denuclearisation, 1962-1972.” Canadian Military History 29, no. 1 (2020).
  • Keess, John. “In Defence of Victory: A Reply to Brigadier-General Carignan’s ‘Victory as a Strategic Objective.’” Canadian Military Journal 18, no. 3 (2018): 37–46.