The Government is hoping to address attrition in the Defence Force with a major pre-Budget funding announcement that will deliver the “biggest pay increase in over a decade” for personnel.
As Newshub has previously reported, personnel are leaving New Zealand’s Defence Force in droves and Defence Minister Andrew Little has called retention his “number one priority”.
Little on Monday announced a $419 million boost to Defence’s payroll, with personnel expected to receive pay increases of between $4000 and $15,000 depending on their rank, role and service branch. This will start from July 1.
This money will pay soldiers more and hope to keep them in the military which is fine and dandy, but this doesn’t in any way shape or form prepare NZ for the military challenges in front of us.
We need to increase Military GDP spending to 3%. Interestingly Labour have quietly ratcheted GDP military spending from just over 1% to just under 2%.
I believe that the climate crisis means we need a vastly larger military to cope with civil disasters and if we are attempting to distance ourselves from China and America, we need to make a decision to dramatically lift what we spend on the military for purely defensive capacity.
How would we go about defending the realm of NZ and all our economic exclusive zone?
“We will no longer be a political football in the wars of imperial powers. We will no longer act as a Pacific spy base for the Five-Eyes Alliance”
…this is an intelligent proposal and alongside our independent foreign policy should be the bindings of a strong national identity.
For me, ANZAC Day is a solemn promise from this generation to the next that we will never waste their lives with the ease we threw previous generations into the mincers of war.
On ANZAC Day, while we remember those who fought and died, we also remember conscientious objectors, diplomats, activists, artists and all who have worked to prevent war and save lives.
As the drumbeat for war slowly echoes across the Pacific, we need collective courage for Peace first and self defence second like never before.
We must fight for peace but prepare for defence. Anything less would dishonour the memory of the fallen.
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