Defense

Four unanswered questions and one response

A few weeks ago I sent out a number of emails to a select group of politicians. They were, in no particular order: Phil Goff; Golriz Ghahraman; Julie Anne Genter; Trevor Mallard; and Grant Robertson.

In these emails, I asked some pretty basic and direct questions.

I have since received only one response.

 

To The Honourable Golriz Ghahraman I wrote:

Hi Golriz,

I just have a quick question regarding your recent attendance at the Anti-Bases protest over in Waihopai last weekend:

Did you use Crown expenses to travel to and from this event?

Thank you for your time in this matter.

 

As yet no response has been forthcoming.

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In Whose Name?

PHIL JOHNSON/STUFF CIRCUIT Harmeet Sooden

I count myself extremely fortunate to live in a country where it is not against the law to be an annoying idiot.

Perhaps the current level of liberty I myself hold would be somewhat compromised if this was not the case.

As a benefactor of the English Common Law, this nation enjoys a level of quiet moderation of jurisprudence that ensures a much more robust and transparent system of governance that few other countries possess. This is unfortunate but nevertheless a reality.

The evolutionary nature of our laws are measured against the balance of precedence which is not only better able to adapt to changing circumstance, but also far less reliant on a central power base deciding on how legislation is to be interpreted.

But with any system, there are always pros and cons and none are entirely perfect.

One such drawback I believe is the unfortunate magnetic quality such a system as ours has in attracting the most annoying self-righteous attention seekers God has ever put breath into. I mean, there are few places in the world where one can espouse an opinion however unpopular or controversial. My own presence on this Blog is a testament to that.

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Ex-Motor pool mechanic and now Defence Minister stupidly lax with medals

The ex-Motor pool mechanic and now Defence Minister, Ron Mark, has been made to look like a bit of a fool for wearing his medals incorrectly and in some cases without a permission.

In order to wear foreign medals you have to get permission. It appears Mark didn’t.

Defence minister Ron Mark has admitted wearing medals he did not have permission to wear.

He is now seeking permission to wear medals which have taken pride of place on his chest during the swearing in of Parliament and the commemorations for Armistice Day.

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Beersheba celebration photos

Here are some photos from Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu’s Facebook page of celebrations at Beersheba.

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I can’t wait for the howls of outrage over Vector’s latest investment

Vector has invested $10M in the Israeli startup that developed the impressive Iron Dome software that protects Israel from terrorist rocket attacks.

Instead of shooting down Hamas rockets from Gaza, the Israeli software developer behind the Iron Dome missile defense system, mPrest, is teaming up with New Zealand’s largest power utility to prevent summertime blackouts and cut down on carbon emissions.

By connecting multiple smart devices in an “Internet of Energy” platform, mPrest’s partnership with New Zealand’s Vector LTD indicates how many Israeli hi-tech firms are branching out and adapting defense-contracted technology to civilian use.

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The Australian Defence Force are having a bad year

The Australian Defence Force is having a bad year. They were hacked and an investigation into the hack revealed that almost anybody could have penetrated their security thanks to a simple password fail.

On top of the hack, it has been revealed that despite having only 27 transgender Defence personnel in the entire Australian Defence Force they have spent well over a million dollars on 17 sex change operations and have written more than 70 documents since 2015 on how to deal with transgenders in the military.The documents include:

20 x Senate Estimates Brief
9 x Ministerial advice briefing notes
7 x Ministerial talking points
2 x Media releases
Service newspaper articles
A ‘Public Affairs Plan’
A ‘Communications Strategies’
A ‘Communications Plan’
A ‘Diversity Communication Strategy’
A response to Questions on Notice
2 x Quarterly Diversity and Inclusion Papers
3 x DEFGRAMs

In between all of that, Defence also managed to:

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Big ticket defence decision looms for new government

The new government is going to have find some cash for spending on replacing the clapped out Hercules transport fleet:

An early job for the new government will be to make a call on what it wants from a replacement to New Zealand’s ageing fleet of Hercules aircraft.

The 52-year-old aircraft are nearing the end of their operational life and although manufacturer Lockheed Martin says it is currently doing work for the New Zealand Defence Force on how many flying hours the five planes have left, the need for new planes is getting more pressing.

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NZDF deploys 70 additional personnel to help ease the fuel shortage

New Zealand Army truck drivers help to solve the aviation fuel shortage in New Zealand by transporting fuel to Palmerston North and Napier.

Twelve New Zealand Defence Force (NZDF) drivers will get behind the wheel of tankers early on Friday as about 70 additional personnel, including refuelling operators, were mobilised to help ease the jet-fuel shortage caused by a damaged oil pipeline last week.

The extra personnel include 55 Royal New Zealand Navy (RNZN) sailors and six refuelling operators from the Royal New Zealand Air Force, to support the Government’s efforts to normalise fuel supplies.   Read more »

Taking the fight to the terrorists

Mark Mitchell has given hints that the government is preparing to take the fight to Islamic terrorists:

The Government is preparing itself for potential requests by countries in Southeast Asia for assistance in fighting Islamic terrorists which could involve air surveillance or even deploying the SAS.

Defence Minister Mark Mitchell has confirmed to the Weekend Herald that the Government is seeking advice on what role New Zealand defence forces could play.

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11% of our troops deployed overseas

NZ Navy Rating Konrad Cook (third from left) teaching members of the Fiji Naval Squadron on how to operate the 50-calibre machine gun during an exercise onboard the HMNZS HAWEA in Fiji waters yesterday. Picture: ELIKI NUKUTABU

via NZDF:

Eleven per cent of the New Zealand Defence Force’s (NZDF) regular force personnel are currently serving or training overseas, with personnel on six of the seven continents.

Major General Tim Gall, the Commander Joint Forces New Zealand, said about 500 servicemen and women were supporting 15 operations overseas, while another 500 were taking part in multinational exercises.

On average, there are only about 500 personnel deployed on operations and training overseas.   Read more »