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NZDF General discussion thread

This is a discussion on NZDF General discussion thread within the Geo-strategic Issues forum, part of the Global Defense & Military category; If a new government came into power in New Zealand and had the vision of making New Zealand a regional ...


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Old April 13th, 2007   #1
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NZDF General discussion thread

If a new government came into power in New Zealand and had the vision of making New Zealand a regional power, what could they to to make this happen?

New Zealand's army is very well trained as in equipt with modern weapon such as:

Armoured Vehicles

105 x NZ Light Armoured Vehicle (NZLAV)
352x Pinzgauer Light Operational Vehicle (LOV)

Missile Systems

12 x Mistral anti-aircraft missile
24 x Javelin Anti-Tank Guided Missile (ATGM) launchers

Support Vehicle

Unimog trucks
Army Tractors
Recovery Vehicles, etc

Fire Support/Artillery

34 x 105 mm L118 Light Gun
50 x 81 mm mortar
42 x 84 mm Carl Gustav recoilless rifle M3
M72 Light Armour Weapon

Weapons

Browning 12.7 mm M2 machine gun
L7A2 FN MAG 58 7.62 mm GPMG
C9 Minimi 5.56 mm Light Machine Gun
M203 grenade launcher
F88 Austeyr 5.56 mm assault rifle
SIG P226 9 mm pistol

The Navy consists of:

Frigates

2 ANZAC class

Support
1 Muli-Role Vessel
1 Replenish ship

Patrol
2 OPV
4 IPV

Other
1 Hydrographic survey
1 Dive support/mine countermeasures

I personally would like to see about 50 tracked IFV in the NZ army. The NZ navy needs to increase the number of frigates to 4 and add another MRV so that they can project power.

The RNZAF is a large topic. We know that the RNZAF does not have a strike wing but one may evolve in the future. It would not be to hard to start a strike wing within the RNZAF. Obviously a new base would have to be constructed specifically for the fighters. Once this is done the best option would be to talk with the UK and USA and organise training for pilots and ground crew. While they are being trained, 20-30 second hand fighters could be purchased for several billion dollars. When the pilots and ground crew are trained they can then set up a training structure.

Merged "What could New Zealand do to become a regional power?" AND "NZDF under change of Govt" threads.
-Preceptor


Also merged New Zealand Forces in a war zone
-Preceptor

Last edited by Preceptor; November 26th, 2009 at 04:42 AM. Reason: Threads merged into general NZDF discussion
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Old April 13th, 2007   #2
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Little search of the forum brings up this thread:

NZDF - Now and the Future.

I may merge this thread with the above link later on.

Enjoy!
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Old April 14th, 2007   #3
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New Zealand IS a regional power. Apart from Australia, which Country in her region can match the military power she can generate?
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Old April 14th, 2007   #4
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Originally Posted by Aussie Digger View Post
New Zealand IS a regional power. Apart from Australia, which Country in her region can match the military power she can generate?
I suppose it depends on which region one considers NZ to be in, is is ASEAN, or more Oceania? If it is being compared to nations in ASEAN (somewhat of a stretch given the distance...) then I don't think NZ is a power, but in Oceania it is definately a power.

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Originally Posted by WebMaster View Post
Little search of the forum brings up this thread:

NZDF - Now and the Future.

I may merge this thread with the above link later on.

Enjoy!
Would this thread work as an alternate? It's last post is somewhat old, but the thread itself hasn't been closed... Moving Forward with Maximizing New Zealands Defense Force Assets

A question I have to ask though, if the objective is for NZ to become a regional power, why? I personally would like to see the NZDF stronger and more capable, but I feel I have good reason for wanting that. But what would the reason others have for NZ becoming stronger and/or a regional power?

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Old April 14th, 2007   #5
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As AD points out, New Zealand is a region power. However it wanted to become the regional power, you'd have to pray that Oz would sink under the waves. :
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What I don't really see is why New Zealand scrapped its fighters. Apparently due to budget issues...but wuth an $11.5 billion surplus last year over 100 second hand fighters could be purchased for that. New Zealand is a rich country and New Zealand citizens pay high tax, therefore they should be guarenteed protection. With the current military build up in the asian reigon New Zealand should keep up so that they can hold their own territory. This could be done by adding a strong strike wing (34 second hand F-16's and if a threat emerges, an extra 36) and an addition 2-3 frigates and MRV.
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Old April 14th, 2007   #7
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That they can hold their territory? Against whom? NZ is so far away from everything that it is definitely under the top 10 of the less threatened countries on earth.

I think we had an interesting thread about wether NZ should get back fighter jets and for what price.

BTW, if anybody overhelms your fighters then (If you purchase some) and lands troops you are doomed.

Modern equipment is also a bit over the top.
The artillery? Easy prey for every enemy with a countable counterfire capability.
Your AA? 12x Mistral are not what I would call a SAM shield.
The 2 ANZACs. Also not a top ship anymore (If they have ever been one) without major modernization.
Your AT? 24x Javelin, despite being modern, are just a very low number.

And that is just the main factor. Numbers.
For sure for Oceania standards it is ok, but OCeania is for the most demilitarised region in the world with only two other countries possessing armed forces worth the name (Indonesia and Australia) and both are stronger than NZ.
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Old April 14th, 2007   #8
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What I don't really see is why New Zealand scrapped its fighters. Apparently due to budget issues...but wuth an $11.5 billion surplus last year over 100 second hand fighters could be purchased for that. New Zealand is a rich country and New Zealand citizens pay high tax, therefore they should be guarenteed protection. With the current military build up in the asian reigon New Zealand should keep up so that they can hold their own territory. This could be done by adding a strong strike wing (34 second hand F-16's and if a threat emerges, an extra 36) and an addition 2-3 frigates and MRV.
Purchasing fighters would only be part of the budget needed to develop and maintain an air combat arm. Pilots and groundcrew would need to be recruited and trained, a stockpile of suitable weapons would be needed, and the complete support infrastructure, including spare parts, hangars, radar control and reporting units, etc, would need to be provided.

If a future government decided to re-establish an air combat force I would suggest that as a starter the MB339s could be reactivated to maintain the fast jet skills of its present pilots and begin training a new generation. These aircraft could also provide fleet and army support. If restoring the MB339s is too difficult a modern turboprop trainer like the PC21 could achieve the same aims. Some pilots could be attached to RAAF units to gain experience in advanced jets and at the end of the decade NZ could perhaps offer to take over the FA-18Fs when the RAAF replaces them with a fourth F-35 squadron. Maybe a good deal could be struck as I am certain Australia would regard a RNZAF squadron of Super Hornets as a valuable asset in the Region.

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Old April 14th, 2007   #9
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Well look what happened in Vietnam. The North Vietnamese were not well equipt but they still won the war. A similar situation to New Zealand. New Zealand troops are among, if not the best troops in the world. I remember watching the news recently and an American general was congradulating NZ's efforts in Afghanistan. He said that if you gave New Zealand tanks, we would be un-stopable. He was refering to the training and determination that the New Zealand troops have. If New Zealand was attacked, we have the perfect equipment for a gurella war. Light armoured vehicles and anti tank weapons.
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New zealand does not need fighter aircraft. It would be a waste of money. they would not have enough to deploy oversea's and they couldn't afford aircraft good enough to actually be of use.

As New zealand will never come under air attack it does not need fighter jets.

New Zealand should have excellent ocean patrolling. Global Hawk and P-3 Orions are all New Zealand would need to perform this mission.

For oversea's conflicts New Zealand should put most of its money into having a small elite army with state of the art equipment. Now that would be useful, all it needs is enough soldiers to have a continual presense oversea's. New Zealand already has a very solid foundation as its quite lean and mean already it just needs more money injected.

If the pay rate was good enough it would definitely stop them coming to Australia. By looking at the New Zealand Rugby team imagine the New Zealand special forces

Logistics wise C-130's are too short ranged to reach anywhere but Australia. Renting C-17's off Australia when needed will be all thats required. If New Zealand bought two C-17's and based them with the Australian C-17's that would be sensational. However New Zealand doesn't have anything worse deploying anyway :p

Global hawk would probably be the best purchase as it is cheaper to operate than the P-3 and can cover a larger area. New Zealand should aim to be able to do an East Timor like invasion, That would a good goal to set. Global hawk could even perform close air support.
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Old April 14th, 2007   #11
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Well look what happened in Vietnam. The North Vietnamese were not well equipt but they still won the war. A similar situation to New Zealand. New Zealand troops are among, if not the best troops in the world. I remember watching the news recently and an American general was congradulating NZ's efforts in Afghanistan. He said that if you gave New Zealand tanks, we would be un-stopable. He was refering to the training and determination that the New Zealand troops have. If New Zealand was attacked, we have the perfect equipment for a gurella war. Light armoured vehicles and anti tank weapons.
You have compared the numbers we are talking about. The north vietnamese army together with the Vietcong and other guerilla groups counted millions. And they were well enough equipped compared to what New Zealand has now. They had the tech to down a countable number of enemy planes. NZ has what? 12x Mistral? This is really near to nothing.

As for guerilla warfare. 24x Javelin are not that much. You are definitely going to get some kills with them but if the enemy isn't totally incompetent you are going to lose your tank hunter teams one after another.
And your light armored vehicles are nearly useless when it comes to guerilla warfare. As soon as the enemy lands tanks, proper protected IFVs, Helicopters, Planes and their own tank hunter teams these light armored vehicles are gone.

No, the NZ army is not designed to defend NZ itself.
Everybody who thinks that NZ is able to defend itself against any invader who whants it denies military realities.
As stated very well by rjmaz they should and they are focussing on multinational oversea missions with a very deep relationship to Australia.
And they seem to be good at it.

I hope you Kiwis don't fell offended by this and I defenitely don't argue against the bravery and skills of your soldiers but there are just facts which have to be considered when talking about such a topic.
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Old April 14th, 2007   #12
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Historically the Kiwi's have fought well, and have a proud history, but currently New Zealand is about as militarily insignificant as a modern nation can make itself.

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As New zealand will never come under air attack it does not need fighter jets.
OK, if you say so. They also don't have, as far as I know, any anti-shipping missiles or platforms to shoot them off of. They have no submarines, a very limited ability to protect their small navy from air attack. They can only operate two ASW helicopters from sea, "tho as I understand under Protector this will improve". They have a small amphib capability but no meaningful way to provide CAS from either aircraft or gunnery, even if they were able to protect the amphib force, which they couldn't.

They have to few frigates to call them a "Frigate Navy", to few gunboats to be called a "Gun Boat Navy", and lacking anything else to call them I guess The "New Zealand Navy" will do. Their so called Air Force is even in worse straights. So with whatever army they can drum up they have no real way of protecting it and supporting it during operations.

I don't know what they are doing down there. Doesn't anyone on that island understand that the future is merely history on re-run?

No disrespect to the Kiwis. As I said before you have a proud history and no doubt still produce outstanding fighting men. But your leaders are bloody mad to have followed the paths they have. Even as isolationists, and as "save the whales no nukes types", there is no exuse for a free nation to allow itself to become so impotent.

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Old April 14th, 2007   #13
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Historically the Kiwi's have fought well, and have a proud history, but currently New Zealand is about as militarily insignificant as a modern nation can make itself.
And yet they still make meaningful contributions to most of the major conflicts going on around the world...

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OK, if you say so. They also don't have, as far as I know, any anti-shipping missiles or platforms to shoot them off of. They have no submarines, a very limited ability to protect their small navy from air attack. They can only operate two ASW helicopters from sea, "tho as I understand under Protector this will improve". They have a small amphib capability but no meaningful way to provide CAS from either aircraft or gunnery, even if they were able to protect the amphib force, which they couldn't.
Nor will they need to. Such assets will NOT be deployed into areas where they can't be protected by A) NZ's own assets, B)a close allies assets (ie: Australia, USA etc). If NZ can't go there safely then they simply won't go. It's not as if they will be fighting a war of national survival without external assistance.

RNZN P-3K oriion and the ANZAC class frigate are perfectly capable of employing anti-ship missiles (if equipped with same) as are the Seasprite SH-2G's which ARE armed with Maverick ASM's.

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They have to few frigates to call them a "Frigate Navy", to few gunboats to be called a "Gun Boat Navy", and lacking anything else to call them I guess The "New Zealand Navy" will do. Their so called Air Force is even in worse straights. So with whatever army they can drum up they have no real way of protecting it and supporting it during operations.

I don't know what they are doing down there. Doesn't anyone on that island understand that the future is merely history on re-run?

No disrespect to the Kiwis. As I said before you have a proud history and no doubt still produce outstanding fighting men. But your leaders are bloody mad to have followed the paths they have. Even as isolationists, and as "save the whales no nukes types", there is no exuse for a free nation to allow itself to become so impotent.

"I guess Waylander beat me to "post" but we are both saying the same thing".
But what does NZ need to achieve militarily?

UN wise it more than pulls it's weight with simultaneous deployments to Afghanistan, East Timor, Soloman Islands and until recently Fiji and Tonga.

It is under less threat of air attack than Australia, though I still believe NZ should have SOME ability to control it's airspace and provide a response and interdiction capacity in the air, just as it does at sea with patrol AND response capabilities.

Something aloneg the lines of a fast jet trainer that can be cued by other assets (to keep costs down, ie: no targetting radar) and an ability to employ a light cannon/ machine gun capability and WVR missiles. On top of this it could also provide a forward air control capability, limited CAS support and also "fleet and ground" attack training duties to keep RNZN and NZ Army up to speed, air attack wise.

NZ Army is very capable already, particularly in the aforementioned peace-keeping roles. Whilst the overall number of systems it operates are low, they are matched reasonably well to the size of the overall force and particularly well for the types of deployments it conducts.

Given it's generally small operational deployments (by world standards) can be supported with integral anti-armour (Javelin) and anti-air
capacity (radar cued Mistral SAM's) plus good quality light armoured and "soft skin" vehicle transport capacity, rapidly improving air mobility (thanks to NH-90 and LUH acquisitions) and a long term project exists to improve NZ's in-direct fire capacity with artillery/mortar upgrades or replacement, ensures they are pretty well off in these areas too.

Further capacity is scheduled to be acquired with greater direct fire support assets and greater logistical, communications etc capacity.

Most important future criteria for NZ are IMHO (in no particular order),

1) Improved maritime patrol and response capabilities, including an anti-ship weapon for ANZAC's and P-3K Orions.

2) A modern idigenous mine counter-measures capability for the RNZN

3) Survivability and targetting upgrades for ANZAC class frigates (already planned, but until actually delivered are only "good ideas").

4) Improved Tactical transport capacity beyond that which the C-130H upgrade project will provide. My solution would be to acquire similar (or better yet) additional numbers of A400M aircraft as a replacement for the C-130. The idea that Australia will have spare C-17 capacity to "rent" is absurd. Some intra-theatre work perhaps, but the Kiwi's will have to find their own "strategic transport" capability in future I suspect, just as they do now...

5) Increased air mobile transport capacity for Army (ie: more helo's).

6) An aerial reconnaisance/surveillance and aerial fire support capability for Army. (Helo gunship style capability).

7) An upgrade project to equip NZ's "OPV" craft with the weapon, sensor and combat systems necessary to perform a limited combat role. They were designed to operate 76mm guns and other weapons, but on the basis of cost and political ideology this was decided against. A medium calibre gun (57-76mm) with "SMART" munitions, CIWS/SAM system and an appropriate combat system and sensor suite should be the minimum level of capability these craft operate, IMHO and could provide a useful "Tier 2" combat capability for RNZN, in addition to their patrol functions...
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Old April 14th, 2007   #14
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And yet they still make meaningful contributions to most of the major conflicts going on around the world...



Nor will they need to. Such assets will NOT be deployed into areas where they can't be protected by A) NZ's own assets, B)a close allies assets (ie: Australia, USA etc). If NZ can't go there safely then they simply won't go. It's not as if they will be fighting a war of national survival without external assistance.

RNZN P-3K oriion and the ANZAC class frigate are perfectly capable of employing anti-ship missiles (if equipped with same) as are the Seasprite SH-2G's which ARE armed with Maverick ASM's.



But what does NZ need to achieve militarily?

UN wise it more than pulls it's weight with simultaneous deployments to Afghanistan, East Timor, Soloman Islands and until recently Fiji and Tonga.

It is under less threat of air attack than Australia, though I still believe NZ should have SOME ability to control it's airspace and provide a response and interdiction capacity in the air, just as it does at sea with patrol AND response capabilities.

Something aloneg the lines of a fast jet trainer that can be cued by other assets (to keep costs down, ie: no targetting radar) and an ability to employ a light cannon/ machine gun capability and WVR missiles. On top of this it could also provide a forward air control capability, limited CAS support and also "fleet and ground" attack training duties to keep RNZN and NZ Army up to speed, air attack wise.

NZ Army is very capable already, particularly in the aforementioned peace-keeping roles. Whilst the overall number of systems it operates are low, they are matched reasonably well to the size of the overall force and particularly well for the types of deployments it conducts.

Given it's generally small operational deployments (by world standards) can be supported with integral anti-armour (Javelin) and anti-air
capacity (radar cued Mistral SAM's) plus good quality light armoured and "soft skin" vehicle transport capacity, rapidly improving air mobility (thanks to NH-90 and LUH acquisitions) and a long term project exists to improve NZ's in-direct fire capacity with artillery/mortar upgrades or replacement, ensures they are pretty well off in these areas too.

Further capacity is scheduled to be acquired with greater direct fire support assets and greater logistical, communications etc capacity.

Most important future criteria for NZ are IMHO (in no particular order),

1) Improved maritime patrol and response capabilities, including an anti-ship weapon for ANZAC's and P-3K Orions.

2) A modern idigenous mine counter-measures capability for the RNZN

3) Survivability and targetting upgrades for ANZAC class frigates (already planned, but until actually delivered are only "good ideas").

4) Improved Tactical transport capacity beyond that which the C-130H upgrade project will provide. My solution would be to acquire similar (or better yet) additional numbers of A400M aircraft as a replacement for the C-130. The idea that Australia will have spare C-17 capacity to "rent" is absurd. Some intra-theatre work perhaps, but the Kiwi's will have to find their own "strategic transport" capability in future I suspect, just as they do now...

5) Increased air mobile transport capacity for Army (ie: more helo's).

6) An aerial reconnaisance/surveillance and aerial fire support capability for Army. (Helo gunship style capability).

7) An upgrade project to equip NZ's "OPV" craft with the weapon, sensor and combat systems necessary to perform a limited combat role. They were designed to operate 76mm guns and other weapons, but on the basis of cost and political ideology this was decided against. A medium calibre gun (57-76mm) with "SMART" munitions, CIWS/SAM system and an appropriate combat system and sensor suite should be the minimum level of capability these craft operate, IMHO and could provide a useful "Tier 2" combat capability for RNZN, in addition to their patrol functions...
Arming the ANZACs with Harpoons and ESSMs, plus maybe purchasing a squadron of MLU upgraded F-16s, or a larger combination of MB-339s and Block 52 F-16s, may be a good idea for a well equipped defense force with a respectable power projection capability for any conflict that requires more than peacekeeping forces, i.e., a conflict in SEA which New Zealand may be forced to participate in order to protect its trade routes, and such a force can be had for a reasonable budget, that is, a defense budget between 2 and 2.5 per cent of GDP, the armed forces you described is appropriate for peacekeeping missions, but for missions that require a more formidable conventional power projection capability, it seems to be sorely lacking, or maybe New Zealand can just buy an advanced subsonic attack aircraft with a good radar and the capability to fire AIM-9M or even X missiles to give it some air to air combat capability, sort of like the souped up Super Skyhawks that Singapore has, or had, so that it could still afford to buy a third ANZAC equipped with Harpoons and ESSMs, if the defence budget falls in the lower end of the 2 to 2.5 per cent of GDP range for New Zealand, which is still substially more than what New Zealnd currently spends on defense, which is about 1 per cent of GDP.

Last edited by ren0312; April 14th, 2007 at 02:32 PM.
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Old April 14th, 2007   #15
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Arming the ANZACs with Harpoons and ESSMs, plus maybe purchasing a squadron of MLU upgraded F-16s, or a larger combination of MB-339s and Block 52 F-16s, may be a good idea for a well equipped defense force with a respectable power projection capability for any conflict that requires more than peacekeeping forces, i.e., a conflict in SEA which New Zealand may be forced to participate in order to protect its trade routes, and such a force can be had for a reasonable budget, that is, a defense budget between 2 and 2.5 per cent of GDP, the armed forces you described is appropriate for peacekeeping missions, but for missions that require a more formidable conventional power projection capability, it seems to be sorely lacking, or maybe New Zealand can just buy an advanced subsonic attack aircraft with a good radar and the capability to fire AIM-9M or even X missiles to give it some air to air combat capability, sort of like the souped up Super Skyhawks that Singapore has, or had, so that it could still afford to buy a third ANZAC equipped with Harpoons and ESSMs, if the defence budget falls in the lower end of the 2 to 2.5 per cent of GDP range for New Zealand, which is still substially more than what New Zealnd currently spends on defense, which is about 1 per cent of GDP.
The acquisition of a third frigate would enable NZ to maintain a deployment of a frigate as part of a multi national force. It is too late to buy another Anzac, but it may be possible to have a Meko 200 hull built in Germany and fitted out like an upgraded Anzac (with the present ships also being upgraded of course). Alternatively a simplified version of the new Australian AWD minus AEGIS and the long range missile system might be a good solution. I think both these possibilities were put forward in the previous thread.

Coming back to the air combat capability, this may not be something that would be a high priority (though obviously it would be a handy asset) for home defence but, like a third frigate, it would enable NZ to contribute to multi national operations.

In this thread we are talking about a new government that wants to increase NZ's regional power status so we would have to presume that the defence budget would be increased accordingly. Increasing expenditure annually until it reached at least 2% of GDP would be a reasonable target to bring it closer to that of Australia. Over time this should enable a third frigate to be acquired and a small air combat force to be re-established as well as expanding, modernising and further enhancing existing assets, along the lines suggested by AD.


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