New Zealand Army

ngatimozart

Super Moderator
Staff member
Verified Defense Pro
I read the SMA's post last night as well. I didn't bother reading the comments because I had a pretty good idea of what they would say. It is unfortunate that it has come to the point where soldiers are voting with their feet and I would put that down to them being used in MIQ facilities and working roadblocks ensuring that Aucklanders stay confined within their borders. That is not what they signed up for and they are not doing their core mission and training. That has weakened NZDF across the board and it will take a lot of time to bring people back up to pre- COVID-19 military skill levels. I would also suspect that the government will not reimburse NZDF its COVID-19 deployment costs and NZDF will be be expected to cover those from its already over stretched operational budget.
 

Nighthawk.NZ

Well-Known Member
From what I hear through the grape vine, "Operation Protect" has been the main driver of retention rate lowering as, as you said it is not what they signed up for. It will and has weakened the NZDF as a whole.

The Army haven't really had any core exercises in a a year or two, neither has the RNZAF, the RNZN has been lucky and can deploy and stay contactless which they have. But that can only last so long as well.

As for funding totally agree... they not getting that reimbursed what so ever... and would surprise me if they say well you could operate on that last last year so thats what you are getting next year... the snowball effect
 

Rob c

Well-Known Member
From what I hear through the grape vine, "Operation Protect" has been the main driver of retention rate lowering as, as you said it is not what they signed up for. It will and has weakened the NZDF as a whole.

The Army haven't really had any core exercises in a a year or two, neither has the RNZAF, the RNZN has been lucky and can deploy and stay contactless which they have. But that can only last so long as well.

As for funding totally agree... they not getting that reimbursed what so ever... and would surprise me if they say well you could operate on that last last year so thats what you are getting next year... the snowball effect
The problem is that the employment package has never been aimed at long term retention and coupled with the current low unemployment rate for the country, the armed forces do not offer a skilled and motivated person a good reason to stay when currently better options outside with out the down sides. One of the defence reviews around 10 years ago did talk about the subject and what was needed, but as it was going to cost money nothing came of it. Again a case of the pollies not giving any support to the armed forces, yet expecting them to perform miracles with nothing.
 
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ngatimozart

Super Moderator
Staff member
Verified Defense Pro
The problem is that the employment package has never been aimed at long term retention and coupled with the current low employment rate for the country, the armed forces do not offer a skilled and motivated person a good reason to stay when currently better options outside with out the down sides. One of the defence reviews around 10 years ago did talk about the subject and what was needed, but as it was going to cost money nothing came of it. Again a case of the pollies not giving any support to the armed forces, yet expecting them to perform miracles with nothing.
It doesn't help that the leadership in bullshit castle don't exactly cover themselves in glory looking out for the troops welfare either. They don't appear to have skills for looking out for troops pay and conditions or their wider concerns. In our day those with scrambled eggs on their hats didn't have to be concerned about such matters because that was handled by the pollies and public service. Now it isn't, so the troopies just pull the pin and leave, with no one wearing scrambled eggs on their hats apparently learning the lesson. That's one part of the problem and I agree not all senior officers are like that.

The second part of the problem is repeated ad nauseum in NZ threads and that's the pollies. So no need for me to go on. We all get the point.
 

KiwiRob

Well-Known Member
The second part of the problem is repeated ad nauseum in NZ threads and that's the pollies. So no need for me to go on. We all get the point.
The politicians are a reflection of the electorate, you can't blame them for not being interested in defense, defence does not win votes in NZ.
 

OldTex

Active Member
I can recall a time when I was doing some recruiting at the Christchurch A and P show in I think 1997? election where the candidates for labour, national, act etc were there doing the rounds I asked those candidates at the time "what is your partys policy on New Zealands defence? the answer from that labour candidate was the following "we don't need a defence for combat anymore!"
Perhaps the way the NZDF is currently being misused and poorly supported is just a demonstration of the long held unspoken view within at least one of the political parties (which happens to be in power at the moment). It becomes a self fulfilling prophecy on its downward spiral.
 

John Fedup

The Bunker Group
The politicians are a reflection of the electorate, you can't blame them for not being interested in defense, defence does not win votes in NZ.
That is absolutely true and it applies to Canada as well. The situation is made even worse by 1 or 2 political parties being totally irresponsible wrt defence issues and promising to divert dollars to the whining classes, another problem NZ and Canada share. It seems Australian pollies are better at keeping defence from becoming a wedge issue.
 

Rob c

Well-Known Member
The politicians are a reflection of the electorate, you can't blame them for not being interested in defense, defence does not win votes in NZ.
This I would say this is not really true as the pollies do make sure any debate is slanted in their favor. In defences case the is an agreement between the major parties not to debate defence which has been around for a number of years. This amounts to a policy of keeping the public as mushrooms and keeping them in the dark and feed on sh-t so they don't have to do anything. The pollies them selves have been brought up in this environment and know next to nothing now anyway.
The other problem is that the top brass are retired well before their working lives are finished and are reliant on the Government to either put in the good word or give them a satisfactory employment opportunity to finish off their working lives. This requires them to toe the line and not embarrass their political masters and if they play their cards right they can even make Governor General and if you don't then you can follow the example of A.V. Morrison (RNZAF CAS in the 1960's) who dared to speak up and finished his days as a building manager ( up market care taker ) in Wellington.
The end result is that the pollies ensure that the general public is kept uneducated and ignorant on defence matters and the defence hierarchy is kept in line . This is to enable the pollies to use the money saved to enhance their election chances.
The complete defence story is well manipulated by the pollies to their benefit, so I say that they can be blamed.
 
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Stuart M

New Member
The politicians are a reflection of the electorate, you can't blame them for not being interested in defense, defence does not win votes in NZ.
I think that is to deny politicians agency, they are representatives after all and to borrow from Edmund Burke "Your representative owes you, not his industry only, but his judgement; and he betrays you instead of serving you if he sacrifices it to your opinion." While I think that Burke goes to far, the democratic principle requires that government respond to public opinion at some level, I would question the judgement of New Zealand representatives as they seem to ignore a world that is rapidly changing around them.
 

htbrst

Active Member
From what I hear through the grape vine, "Operation Protect" has been the main driver of retention rate lowering as, as you said it is not what they signed up for. It will and has weakened the NZDF as a whole.
Apparently it doesn't help that MBIE workers typically do the 8am-5pm shift for more pay and none of the restrictions of Army life. Defence Force workers do the overnight shift, and given they are already experienced and doing these roles find it easy to shift to MBIE.

MBIE are hardly bolting out of the gate to employ enough people to do the overnight shifts as that probably would come out of their budget.
 

ngatimozart

Super Moderator
Staff member
Verified Defense Pro
Apparently it doesn't help that MBIE workers typically do the 8am-5pm shift for more pay and none of the restrictions of Army life. Defence Force workers do the overnight shift, and given they are already experienced and doing these roles find it easy to shift to MBIE.

MBIE are hardly bolting out of the gate to employ enough people to do the overnight shifts as that probably would come out of their budget.
Just FYI, the Head of MBIE, Carolyn Tremain, is ex RNZAF. So she's aware of how the military works.
 

recce.k1

Active Member
In amongst the "doom and gloom" of experienced personnel leaving, some positive news, it appears that 1st Battalion RNZIR have stood up Whiskey Company again. If wiki is to believed they are still a company short (Alpha Company - can anyone confirm?), but this is still good news demonstrating that Army expansion plans still appear to be in place (with this govt).


 

kiwi in exile

Active Member
well we did say that was why people are leaving in trooves

That's one way to reduce gov't spending on defence without making controversial (at least to us here) cuts.
Same is taking place in other sectors (health) but the gov't has been slow to address workforce issues.
 

Shanesworld

Active Member
That's one way to reduce gov't spending on defence without making controversial (at least to us here) cuts.
Same is taking place in other sectors (health) but the gov't has been slow to address workforce issues.
Partner is an icu nurse. Alot of her colleagues have left recently. Just sick of it. Lack of security in and around the hospital was one of the big issues
 

Shanesworld

Active Member
In NZ?
I thought it was the land of peace and harmony where folks held hands, sang kumbaya together and didn't even need a defence force?
Only if you have diplomatic protection squad. My partner has had death threats. Most of the time its worked up or bereaved family members. But the worst one was a heavily drug affected nutcase involved in some high profile murders. In a previous nurse obsession he became fixated on a nurse but follwed the wrong nurse bashed his way into her house i think she got away and he passed out there. Then back to hospital for blood loss.
 

Kiwigov

Member
RNZAF must be thanking their lucky stars that Ron Mark was MinDef long enough to get the C-130Js and P-8s through final contract confirmation - at least the Govt can't cancel those - unlike the mooted 3rd battalion, which is presumably sunk now given recruitment and (mostly retention?) issues.
Not much chance Aust will ask for (further) NZ help in the Solomons, given lack of Army capacity. Lot of potential for a certain Dragon Empire to make mischief there
 
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