Thursday, September 10, 2009

The sad state of defence

This article makes scary reading.
Last year the 2007/2008.... the Royal New Zealand Navy was finding it difficult to sail, the Royal New Zealand Air Force to fly and the New Zealand Army would have struggled to take part in combat.

Panic not, though. Things have improved this year!

The shameful lack of cash, manpower and modern equipment for our armed services is the product of two things.

1. Complacency

2. Stupidity.

We think we'll never be invaded or threatened, and if we are, we'll have friends to jump in and help us--even if we have spent roughly the last thirty years making them mad.

We do not live in a safe world--and security depends on the ability to demonstrate that you mean it when you say you want your people safe. Even in a limited sphere (ie: the Pacific) we should be pulling our weight, doing our bit, and contributing.

More importantly still, doing that (which we have been, kinda) shouldn't strain us to breaking point.

We are never going to be able to afford aircraft carriers and nuclear subs, even if we wanted them. But an extra frigate or two, maybe an air strike force, and some basic respect for the army wouldn't kill us--it's shameful that last ANZAC Day the Auckland parade mustered a fly-over of---sparrows. No, I am not kidding. There was no fly over, due to the fact that the plane scheduled to do it broke, and we don't have another one.

The government can attend to how parents should raise their kids, what they should eat, how you should trim your trees and how much alcohol to drink, while putting on the back burner our defence policy--which is just about the most basic thing we trust them for.

I'd call it irony if it weren't so stupid.

1 comment:

Lewis said...

I would add to that list "apathy".

I remember a couple of years ago there was severe flooding in Taranaki (I think) and citizens were complaining at the lack of response from the Air Force, because all of our choppers were deployed in East Timor and the Solomons. You get what you pay for - if we underfund our defence forces, we've got no right to complain if they don't show up to defend us.