The Department of National Defence (DND) is claiming that a senior Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) officer “wasn’t participating” in an Ottawa pro-gender ideology protest alongside far-left Antifa extremists despite videos suggesting otherwise.

Livestream footage shows Engineering Officer Pete Davidson standing in a crowd of masked pro-gender ideology protestors at Friday’s demonstration.

Various clips show Davidson, who is wearing a white tee and shorts, pointing at and shouting at demonstrators who were there to oppose gender ideology in schools. Masked Antifa protestors can be seen in the video nearby holding anarchist symbols and insignia.

Although DND’s Media Relations department was able to confirm that the individual in the video was a CAF member, it claims that “he wasn’t participating” in the protest despite the videos.

“We can confirm the individual in the screenshot is a CAF member, however, he wasn’t participating in the demonstration,” DND told True North. 

“The individual happened to be in the vicinity of the protest for personal reasons.”

True North’s follow-up questions concerning videos showing Davidson gesturing and shouting at protestors went unanswered by the deadline given. 

“We are looking into this matter and will respond accordingly. CAF members must always act in a way that displays the best of Canadian beliefs and values, at home and abroad and are bound by various policies,” said DND in a comment received after the article was published.

The protest, which resulted in clashes between the two opposing sides, brought out members from Ottawa’s Muslim community to protest against gender ideology.

True North’s Rupa Subramanya and Harrison Faulkner were in attendance to provide exclusive coverage of the event. 

Davidson’s LinkedIn profile, which can no longer be accessed on the social media platform, lists him as an Engineering Officer at the CAF.

The CAF has specific guidance on professional conduct and ethics. The Queen’s Regulations and Orders (QR&O) – particularly Chapter 19 Section 1. 19.14, Section 2. 19.36 & 19.44 – has strict prohibitions on engaging in political activity.

Additionally, the CAF has guidelines on social media activity. 

“Social networks and the comment sections of Web sites are public in nature, and comments and behaviour therein form a permanent part of the public record,” DND guidance states. 

“CAF members shall ensure that their online activity, whether on – or off – duty, does not reflect discredit on the CAF, compromise the CAFs reputation and lead other to refuse, be reluctant to or be unable to work with the CAF.”

According to an exclusive report by True North, the DND said it would investigate tweets by a handful of CAF members which disparaged Conservative leader Pierre Poilievre and the Freedom Convoy movement. 

“We can confirm that they are currently serving members,” a DND spokesperson told True North.

“While we were not previously aware of this activity, we are currently determining the appropriate steps to be taken.”