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NZ Army restarts major training activity amid manning crisis

5th December 2022 - 20:43 GMT | by Tim Fish in Auckland

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Exercise Torokiki involved mental and physical endurance tasks to develop key military skills such as teamwork, weapon handling, orders and medical care. (NZDF)

The capability of the New Zealand Army has been significantly damaged by its commitment to Operation Protect, the military contribution to the government’s response to COVID-19.

Exercise Torokiki, which ran from 22-26 November, was the first major combined-arms exercise the NZ Army has carried out since Exercise Alam Halfa in 2019. It was the first step towards regenerating its capabilities, particularly in combined-arms manoeuvre, where consistent training is required to avoid skills fade.

During the pandemic, standard collective training from sub-unit through to battle group level was cancelled or postponed.

NZ Army Land Component Commander, Col Duncan Roy, told Shephard that due to extensive Operation Protect commitments, 'With the exception of the special operations forces (which remain fully deployable), the army's collective trained state has atrophied.'

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Tim Fish

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Tim Fish


Tim Fish is a special correspondent for Shephard Media. Formerly the editor of Land Warfare …

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